MaryJane booked us for her wedding a good year and a half in advance, before she had even found a venue. But she had found her man and she found the date to tie the knot with him. We spent that year and a half in constant communication, helping her bounce around ideas and provide logistical help as much as we could. She had toyed with the idea a San Francisco elopement, but as many brides learn, elopements can quickly turn into…weddings! Once her and her groom Andy started exploring having their wedding near their beloved city of San Diego, they realized that they could have their dream California wedding a lot closer home with a lot more of their closest people with them. Once MaryJane started to explore Southern California wedding venues, we started to get emails saying, “How do feel about a San Diego wedding?” Followed by, “How do you feel about a wedding at winery in the San Diego hills?”
That’s where MJ (MaryJane is MJ from here on out because we are basically best pals now!) discovered that the answer to her prayers lay in having a beautiful Fazeli Cellars Temecula wedding. This would be a brand new location for us. A lot of times couples will ask if you have photographed at their venue before. In Oregon, the answer is quite often yes. Now we are going to let you in on a little secret….we love to shoot at a brand new location. Photographers out there know how we feel. The first time you lay your lens on a new destination wedding unlocks a new set of eyes. A new set of creative images. A new story to unfold. It’s so exciting and often results in some of our best work.
Daniel was the lucky one to fly down for MJ’s Temecula wedding and ugh…I’m so jealous. MJ was a vision- a VISION! – in a Lillian West gown from a local San Diego bridal shop, Mon Amie Bridal. Her floral bridal wreath from Studio Fluerish effortlessly complemented the stunning makeup from Wonderpin Studio of San Diego. After working with this dream team of wedding professionals, we are half tempted to move to San Diego! After getting ready, MJ surprised her bridesmaids with her completed look which was such a fun and new “first look” for Daniel to capture.
It was really important for MJ to incorporate the memory of her father, who had passed not long before the wedding. Her thoughtful details were a really lovely representation of his memory and his presence was definitely felt by all. MJ had an embroidered runner with the words, “Dad, I know you’re walking with me from heaven.” Cue tears by pretty much everyone. She also left a chair for him with his US Marine jacket. MJ handled this all so gracefully and we feel honored to have captured such a special tribute for him.
Before she walked down the aisle to meet Andy, the two had a private moment to read letters to one another but without seeing each other. It was super sweet and brides, this a great way to have a first moment together if you don’t want to “see” each other but still want to connect somehow. Andy & MJ’s touching ceremony was felt in the hearts of everyone from row to row. After exiting among flower petals thrown in the air, Daniel made great use of the Fazeli Cellars venue by taking portraits of the newlyweds in the vines, under the moon and by their picture perfect LOVE sign.
With all this emotion and beauty happening, it was easy to forget that a rockin’ reception was coming! Guests and the couple enjoyed DJ Danny Metric’s smoke filled and strobe lit dance floor with no one cutting a rug more than MJ herself. Daniel loved every moment of this special wedding and we both feel so grateful that MJ booked us all those months ago. MJ and Andy are coming up to Oregon this August and now we both get to photograph this gorgeous couple as MJ already put in her request for a Cannon Beach portrait session. Done, and done! See you soon!