Featured in The Knot Magazine!

I don’t know how I refrained from this news, I wanted to shout it from the rooftops when I found out originally. I was contacted a few months ago by The Knot Magazine to ask for permission to feature photos from Melissa & Peter’s wedding at Europa Village in their Spring Edition of their Southern California magazine. The moment it hit the stands I was at the grocery store picking up my (ahem 4 copies) copy! So excited to share this with you being my first post of the year! On top of it, we were officially announced as a winner of “Best of The Knot Weddings 2014.” So many amazing opportunities in 2013, and praying for many more in 2014.

Vendors that made this wedding fabulous include:

Makeup & Hair: Riley Brianne Makeup & Hair
Gown: San Patrick
Suit: J. Crew
Florals: Sweet Pea Floral Creations
Cake: Cakes to Celebrate

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The BiG Announcement – A different baby in the making…

As many of you have seen I’ve hinted here and there on Facebook that there has been something in the works. Many of you already know that Jason and I are expecting our 3rd little one at the end of November, so that’s obviously not it. The new venture has been a dream and a vision for the last few years that is slowly becoming a reality over a very short amount of time. And the big announcement is….

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WE ARE OPENING A STUDIO!

(photo above is a sneak thanks to Sheena Gutierrez)

The thing is it’s not just any studio, it is a Contemporary Portraiture Studio filled with glorious natural light. It also is complete with 2 of the best hair & makeup artist professionals in the area. The experience will be like no other and the imagery is to die for. It’s always been my wish to pamper women, make them feel as beautiful on the outside as they are on the inside, and prove it to them with images they will keep for the rest of their lives.

Where we are now? We are still under construction, we’ve made amazing progress in the last week. Awaiting the furniture and the flooring to be installed and then we will be open for real!

Meet Riley & Carly

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These girls are not only incredibly talented, but they make my job so much easier by pampering and beautifying the women that come into the studio. They are also two of the most adorbs people in the whole entire world!

Sneak Peeks!

Here are some amazing Before & After transformations from some of the shoots we have been up to. I love how glamour transcends age, ethnicity and season of life :)

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Finally…

One last image to leave you with, you will be seeing A LOT more in the near future. This is the lovely Sheena from our shoot yesterday in our new studio!

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Venue Coordinator vs. Wedding Planner

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One of the most common misconceptions we see when it comes to weddings is the expectations of Wedding Coordinators. Really the confusion lies in the difference of venue coordinators vs. wedding planners. Many times our couples will book the venue with the promise of a coordinator on the day of, and while there are the rare gems that really take on that role, the majority of the time they are coordinating the venue staff and catering.

I think it’s important for couples to understand the difference so it’s fair to all! We’ve seen in the past expectations set on venue coordinators to arrange timelines for the wedding day, setup centerpieces, keep the wedding party on time, setup photobooths, gather family members for the processional, etc. On the day of they may take the initiative to help in anyway they can with the extra time they have, but for the most part they only have the time to manage their staff for catering and troubleshooting any problems that may arise with the venue itself.

To ensure a smooth delivery of the day, and even the months prior, I HIGHLY suggest a wedding planner. And if you are worried about it not fitting into your budget, many times the wedding planner pays for itself in the way he/she saves you money because she has strong connections with other vendors, rental companies and understands budgeting for a wedding.

I asked Natalie Vishny of Swellegant Events to outline the importance and difference between the two roles. Natalie has years of experience and an incredible knack for planning. She is also one of our preferred vendors!

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Catering Manager + Wedding Planners + Wedding Couples = The Perfect Match

You’re engaged! Congratulations! First steps, of course, will be to spend time searching for the perfect venue and call a professional wedding planner. Simple advice? Call your wedding planner first, and then search for the perfect venue.

When you find the perfect venue, your Catering Manager will be fabulous at providing the following:

  • A tour of the venue
  • A menu consultant and coordinator for everything related to food and beverage
  • Arranging and taking detailed notes at your menu tasting and giving you great advice about menu selections
  • Detailing what’s called the BEO (Banquet Event Order) for everyone on staff at your venue
  • Creating room layouts and venue designs
  • Acting as the liason between venue, wedding planner, and you
  • Creating a cost breakdown for your financial commitments to venue
  • Providing a staff member to make sure that all venue details are carried out according to the Banquet Event Order

When you hire a Professional Wedding Planner, they will be fabulous at providing the following:

  • Assistance and advice with overall budget (venue is typically 50 -65% of total wedding budget
  • Tools to help move things along, including a personalized planning checklist for your wedding year and a list of preferred vendors.
  • The ability to relax and leave the vendor details to us- communication with your wedding vendors, review your vendor contracts, create a minute-to-minute wedding day timeline for them to follow, as well as specific load-in, load-out instructions.
  • Complete orchestration of your wedding rehearsal and a final review with all wedding participants, including the officiant, bridal party and wedding couple.
  • A day-of-ceremony and reception packing list so that nothing gets missed
  • Reminders and instructions for Wedding Party so that they know exactly what is expected
  • Creation of Wedding Ceremony and Wedding Reception timeline
  • Providing a wide variety of Vendor Referrals, and many cases, discounts on many local vendors
  • Complete oversight of wedding ceremony and reception setup including personal items
  • Overall responsibility before, during, and after your wedding for all details
  • Catering Managers work hand in hand daily with Wedding Planners, and in doing so, we create a perfect environment for your perfect wedding.

Natalie’s headshot provided by www.peppernix.com. Natalie in action at Jessie & Chris’ wedding at the Woman’s Club of Orange.

Behind the Scenes: Woman’s Club of Orange Timelapse

Last year we photographed Jessie & Chris’ Wedding at the Woman’s Club of Orange and it was so much fun. We had the chance to work with the incomparable Natalie from Swellegant Events and the amazing team at The Event Company. When I chatted with Natalie before the wedding day she had mentioned getting some before and after shots of the room because she knew it would be a huge transformation. I decided to go a step further and put together a timelapse. Except, I had no idea how to, so I recruited my good friend Kyle to school me.

We setup a camera in the corner of the room to watch the room be transformed. The result was really amazing, I mean, it didn’t even look like the same room when it was lit up at night. Reasons why I HIGHLY suggest having your reception professionally lit… it is so worth it. It creates a mood, a vibe, and it comes across in your photos :)
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And just a little behind-the-scenes photo from that day of me shooting :)

Callaway Mixer for Temecula Valley Chamber

Some exciting (maybe boring to some) news but we are now officially members of the Temecula Valley Chamber!! Jay and I will be shooting many of the events this year as well so if you are a member you will probably see us :) A couple of weeks ago we had our first mixer at Callaway Winery. Callaway recently renovated and added a new tasting room and a beautiful seating area above it with gorgeous views of the valley. It was a really fun night!

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I’ve been a bad girl…

That’s right. I’ve been neglecting the blog :( But new things are happening, crazy changes arising, everything new and exciting and I can’t wait to share them with you! I’ve got a bunch of weddings I have to share with you because they were amazing and we love our couples! There may even be a little updated look to the blog coming :)

And because the picture above is now over a year old, I thought you might like an updated picture. Every post is made better with a photo right?

The Edmonds Family 2013

… and yes… poor Charley is still baldy  :-P

Our First Engagement Session Giveaway!

I am so excited to be hosting this giveaway on my blog! There are three simple steps, make sure you do all three for your entry to count. One entry per person is allowed, which means your fiancé can also enter for an extra chance to win. You must be engaged to enter!

A complimentary One (1) Hour on-location Engagement Session is given by Ashley Bee Photography in this contest. Winner will be announced on the blog Monday, March 5th, 2012 and must contact photographer via email to book engagement session no later than June 1, 2012, session date and time will be subject to availability and normally should be booked 30 days prior to preferred dates. Engagement session will take place at a location of photographer’s choosing within the Riverside or Orange Counties. The engagement session can not be transferred or exchanged for monetary value. If winner does not claim prize, the winner forfeits his or her photoshoot. Couples from out of town or state can also enter but Engagement Session WILL take place in Southern California so winners will be responsible for travel expenses.


Step One

Click the “like” button! (if you haven’t already)


Step Two

Share this giveaway on your Facebook!


Step Three

Enter the giveaway by filling out the form.

End Piracy, Not Liberty

Millions of Americans oppose SOPA and PIPA because these bills would censor the Internet and slow economic growth in the U.S.

Two bills before Congress, known as the Protect IP Act (PIPA) in the Senate and the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) in the House, would censor the Web and impose harmful regulations on American business. Millions of Internet users and entrepreneurs already oppose SOPA and PIPA.

The Senate will begin voting on January 24th. Please let them know how you feel. Sign this petition urging Congress to vote NO on PIPA and SOPA before it is too late.

Please go here to sign the petition!

A New Year, A New Look

Well, folks. It’s finally here! I’ve been looking forward to this moment for awhile. The. New. Blog.

Since last fall I’ve had this strong desire to write on a more personal level. We had been in the works of rebranding and creating a whole new look but it took much longer than I anticipated. Unfortunately the perfectionist in me has a really hard time making design decisions for myself, but in early November I finally created something I really really liked. And the best part was Jay loved it too! Then what to do about the blog. With a lot of thought we had decided that we would not hold back on the feel of keeping it so “business-y”. Hey! It’s my blog, and I’ll post what I want to!

Although I will ALWAYS post my weddings and portrait sessions because I LOVE my clients… I felt the strong urge to really challenge myself to write this year. To write about life, about the girls, about being a mommy, about being a wife, about being a photographer…. maybe write what I learn, what I accomplished, what I failed at. I promise this won’t become some teenage drama fest!

So to those of you faithful readers (ahem… Mom…), thank you. If you feel the urge to take a peak around, there are some new things. Like the About Me section :)

And to get you pumped, there’s an amazing engagement session coming to the blog tomorrow! This is a sneak of Danielle & Andrew.