Tania & Robert Vow Renewal

Tania and Robert’s vow renewal was wonderful day filled with so much love between these two. They have a rather unique story. They were officially married five years ago in Vizcaya in downtown Sacramento. However, after having two beautiful kids together they made the decision to annul their marriage and marry in the Catholic Church. That way they could truly follow the path their faith had led them in. It was a great thing to be able to capture as a photographer and videographer.

Because it wasn’t a full-fledged wedding, the atmosphere was a little more relaxed than normal but even so, we were able to capture some great video footage and photos.

The getting ready section we only captured on Tania’s side at the couple’s home together. Tania was there with her oldest daughter (the maid of honor) and youngest daughter (less than a year old) as well as her granddaughter (also less than a year old). Although it was a little chaotic with the babies, they made it work and it made the getting ready time uniquely special. Something they will always remember.

Church Vow Renewal Wedding
Church Vow Renewal Wedding
Church Vow Renewal Wedding
Church Vow Renewal Wedding
Church Vow Renewal Wedding

The bride and her party took a limo to the church. They did a pre-reveal or “first look” where they saw each other before the ceremony so that they could take some nice portraits and Robert read a beautiful letter to Tania.

Church Vow Renewal Wedding
Church Vow Renewal Wedding
Church Vow Renewal Wedding
Church Vow Renewal Wedding
Church Vow Renewal Wedding
Church Vow Renewal Wedding
Church Vow Renewal Wedding
Church Vow Renewal Wedding

It was a full Catholic ceremony where just a few intimate relatives and family friends attended, and just what they wanted.

Church Vow Renewal Wedding
Church Vow Renewal Wedding
Church Vow Renewal Wedding
Church Vow Renewal Wedding

Afterward, we did a few more portraits outside the church before heading to their house for the reception.

Church Vow Renewal Wedding
Church Vow Renewal Wedding
Church Vow Renewal Wedding
Church Vow Renewal Wedding
Church Vow Renewal Wedding

They went for a purple theme at their home reception and had a larger crowd.  

Church Vow Renewal Wedding
Church Vow Renewal Wedding
Church Vow Renewal Wedding

Tania and Robert’s older children gave some heartfelt speeches and then they had their special first dances.  Robert even had a father daughter dance with his youngest daughter.  He sure loves that girl to pieces.  The rest of the night, they partied and danced the night away.  A wonderful vow renewal, and I was happy to have captured it!

Church Vow Renewal Wedding
Church Vow Renewal Wedding
Church Vow Renewal Wedding
Church Vow Renewal Wedding
Church Vow Renewal Wedding
Church Vow Renewal Wedding
Church Vow Renewal Wedding
Church Vow Renewal Wedding
Church Vow Renewal Wedding
Church Vow Renewal Wedding
Church Vow Renewal Wedding
Church Vow Renewal Wedding
Church Vow Renewal Wedding

The Wedding of Erika & Matthew

Erika and Matthew’s wedding was truly one of the most fun weddings I have ever shot.  It began with both Erika and Matthew getting ready at separate houses in Galt.  They were both so excited about their day and having fun with their parents and bridesmaids before the big day.

The ceremony itself took place at Saint Robert’s Church in Sacramento.  It was a beautiful Catholic ceremony.

Before taking off for the reception location in Dixon, Erika and Matthew wanted to take some portraits with family and their wedding party both inside the church and outside the church in down town Sacramento.

Their reception took place at Jess Jones Vineyard.  It was a gorgeous location and I love taking couples portraits in the vineyards.  It can really make for an iconic image.

The reception included a cultural Hawaiian dance by Matthew’s niece, some great speeches and of course the special dances between Erika and Matthew and their parents.  Finally, they were joined by the rest of their guests for dancing well into the night.

Classic wedding ended beautifully!

The Wedding of Nia & Daniel

Roseville Sacramento Wedding

Nia and Daniel’s wedding was a simple yet elegant affair on a warm Sacramento early May day.  I was referred to Nia for this wedding by the DJ, Sounds To Go, which underscores how important it is to network in this industry and build relationships with other vendors because you never know when it can result in a job.

Among wedding professionals, there is often a bias against backyard weddings, but I have done several this year and they have all been in gorgeous backyards and this one is no exception.  It provided the perfect backdrop for this wedding.  When I arrived Nia and her family were incredibly welcoming and introduced me to all of the major family members and wedding party. Upon arriving, I was able to get some great detail shots of the location and some of the details of the setup.  

Roseville Sacramento Wedding
Roseville Sacramento Wedding
Roseville Sacramento Wedding

Since Nia did not require photos of her getting ready, I right away started shooting the groomsmen.  We took some great posed shots.  Daniel sure has some great guys supporting him.

Roseville Sacramento Wedding
Roseville Sacramento Wedding

After finishing up with the guys portraits, the girls were ready to go so we took some nice shots of Nia and her bridesmaids and the flower girl.  

Roseville Sacramento Wedding
Roseville Sacramento Wedding
Roseville Sacramento Wedding

The ceremony started on schedule and was short and sweet with the traditional entrance of the bridesmaids and bride, vows, ring exchange and kiss.

Roseville Sacramento Wedding
Roseville Sacramento Wedding
Roseville Sacramento Wedding
Roseville Sacramento Wedding

Following the ceremony, we took some nice posed photos of the bridal party all together as well as one picture of all the guests.  It’s always a challenge to make sure I can see everyone in these kind of photos but I think this one turned out pretty good!  This was a fun group too, and they did a pretty cool silly picture!

Roseville Sacramento Wedding
Roseville Sacramento Wedding

The bridal party then made their grand entrance to start the reception portion of the evening’s festivities.  There was a great dinner, socializing and some great speeches.  I hear many wedding speeches every year, but the speeches from this wedding will stick with me for a long time.  The best man (the bride’s brother) spoke about how he first realized Daniel and his sister were dating. Before dating his sister, he had only known Daniel as part of a rival baseball team who had just recently beat his team in the championships.  You can imagine his surprise when he opened the door to his home one day and found Daniel sitting on the couch with Nia.  The other speech that sticks out in my mind came from Nia’s step father.  He talked about how he had always wanted a daughter and was delighted when Nia entered his life and filled that role.  His words were so heart-felt and touching, I could tell that he meant it from the deepest of his soul.

Roseville Sacramento Wedding
Roseville Sacramento Wedding
Roseville Sacramento Wedding
Roseville Sacramento Wedding
Roseville Sacramento Wedding

After the speeches, the couple shared a precious first dance with each other and then with their parents.  And that’s about the time my work day finished.  Nia was so thoughtful and wrote me a nice card that she sent me home with (and a little something extra), which is always appreciated for me and my team.  What a great May wedding to remember!

Courtney & Rich Engagement

Courtney and Rich Engagement Shoot for Loomis Wedding
Courtney and Rich are so excited to marry each other!

The months of February and March have been booming for engagement shoots. With wedding season starting to ramp up in April, these first few months of the year are ideal for engagement shoots, and is a sign of a couple that is on top of their wedding planning tasks. The shoot of Courtney and Rich happened at the UC Davis Arboretum Teaching Nursery in mid-March. This location is really a great hidden gem for taking engagement portraits. It has areas of tall green grass great for photos, landscaped walkways and striking trees, some still with yellow fall leaves on them. If you are a Sacramento or Davis area photographer or wedding planner, I would definitely recommend you keep this park I mind for engagement shoots for your couples!

On the day of the shoot, at 2:00 PM, a heavy rainy downpour was under way in the Sacramento area and the shoot was planned at 4:00 PM. But I looked down at the weather app on my phone and saw that the weather was supposed to clear up shortly, and I prayed that for once my phone would prove correct. And it did! The engagement shoot went through, on schedule with no rain!

To break the ice with Courtney and Rich, we started with a simple “V pose”. I call it a “V pose” because the couple takes a simple head on picture slightly turned towards each other forming a fat V shape. That is a pose that most people are familiar with and always helps people get in the mood of photo taking.

Courtney and Rich Engagement Shoot for Loomis Wedding
Traditional shot in the park. Gorgeous lighting!

After that first initial shot, we began to walk through the park area. At one point I looked up towards the tree branches, and I noticed a soft light shining down through the trees hitting the yellow leaves creating a sort of glowing atmosphere. I truly believe that outdoor photoshoots are the best studio you can have if you know how to read the natural light. In my mind, I realized that this was the perfect time and place to capture my “awkward pose”. Now, I call it the “awkward pose” because I ask couples to face each other head-to-head and stare into each other’s eyes, which always feels incredibly awkward no matter who you are staring at. Then I make it fun by challenging them to see who can make the other laugh first. In this case, Richard cracked a joke and Courtney couldn’t help herself but laugh. My camera was there to capture that genuine moment of laughter.

Courtney and Rich Engagement Shoot for Loomis Wedding
The lighting hits the couple and provides a beautiful glow as they look into each other’s eyes.
Courtney and Rich Engagement Shoot for Loomis Wedding
The “awkward pose”. Richard cracked a joke!

There always comes that point in an engagement shoot when as a photographer you want to make sure the couple has an opportunity to show off that engagement ring. Whenever possible, I like to take three variations of a picture to make sure I get the shot and also to provide the couple with options in creating their albums or save the date cards.

Courtney and Rich Engagement Shoot for Loomis Wedding
The engagement ring here really stands out.
Courtney and Rich Engagement Shoot for Loomis Wedding
Showing off that ring.
Courtney and Rich Engagement Shoot for Loomis Wedding
Hanging out on a bench, enjoying the scenery and conveniently showing off that ring.
Courtney and Rich Engagement Shoot for Loomis Wedding
They had so much fun walking and talking.

We continued our walk through the park area and stopped every now and then to capture some of the more traditional couple poses that you typically see in engagement portraits. I like to make things casual on these shoots, allowing couples to walk together and stop where it feels natural. I and my assistant usually tag along behind them snapping pictures as we walk and evaluating where the best lighting and angles are.

Courtney and Rich Engagement Shoot for Loomis Wedding
Great photo with the yellow leaves in the background.
Courtney and Rich Engagement Shoot for Loomis Wedding
Another great traditional engagement shoot.

I do, however try to direct couples to areas that will provide particularly appealing background settings for photos. That is how we ended up near a tree with branches extending along the ground and providing a natural bench for Courtney and Rich to lean on and take a few shots.

Courtney and Rich Engagement Shoot for Loomis Wedding
The branches provided such a great background for this engagement shot.

With all the walking we were doing, we were all starting to get tired and I wanted to make sure Courtney and Rich were relaxed for the final photos of the day, so I had them first lean up against the tree and take some fun casual photos.

Courtney and Rich Engagement Shoot for Loomis Wedding
The tree was nice for Courtney to relax and lean on. And still a great casual pose for their engagement shoot.
Courtney and Rich Engagement Shoot for Loomis Wedding
A kiss for the groom. Not the first, and surely won’t be the last from this bride!
Courtney and Rich Engagement Shoot for Loomis Wedding
A nice casual pose between two people engaged and in love.

Nearby there was an area of dry leaves that covered the grass. Courtney proposed taking a photo in the area, and I always like to encourage my couples to get involved and suggest locations/poses, etc. Plus, I thought this was an excellent idea. I posed them down on the floor, so that we could make sure we got the full effect of the dry leaves in the portrait. Rich wasn’t sure about sitting in the leaves at first, but I think he did it for Courtney. Love is a powerful thing! And I think the photo came out pretty darn good! So good call Courtney!

That’s all I got for this one, until next time everyone …

Peace out,
Philippe