It's not really fair having a wedding this great at the beginning of the season. It sets the bar unreasonably high for the rest of the year. Katie and David got married at Rancho Chiquita, a private residence, in the hills of Malibu. The grounds of the home were set up PERFECTLY for a wedding and the incredible house was a perfect backdrop to shoot against. The fact that its in the hills overlooking the ocean didn't hurt either. Haha. :)

Here are some favorites from their day!

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[June 17, 2011] Cathy and David said:
Dude. You aren't kidding! That does set the bar high! Awesome details man, I'm very jealous. :D
[June 17, 2011] Kelsey Steindler said:
Michael, you never fail to amaze me with your talent! You are truly gifted :)
[June 17, 2011] Valerie Macdonald said:
You captured the day perfectly! THANKS for making my daughter look so beautiful, and my new son-in-law so handsome!
[June 17, 2011] s h e r r y said:
:) Love the detail shots, and all the awesome locations! Wonderful!
[June 19, 2011] Taylor said:
Dude, you rocked it! Simply gorgeous images.
[June 22, 2011] linda said:
handsome man and beautiful bride!! beautiful pictures!
[July 7, 2011] Edmund Prieto said:
Still blowing my mind!
[August 29, 2011] Raleigh Wedding Photographer said:
I really like this wedding Michael, especially love the bride and groom shot near the pool.
[August 29, 2011] Mario said:
Great work. I love your style.
[December 12, 2016] Charles said:
Because here is a list of multiplayer games is that the leave was asked for more.

I shot Veronica and Jason's wedding in San Pedro a few weeks ago. As I was going through the images I loved how many great authentic moments there were. It got me thinking about my job as a photographer. Looking back over the images from Cyndie and I's wedding, the images that mean the most are the ones that captured a moment and more specifically an emotion. THIS is what weddings are about. Sure, I love to shoot portraits. I'd probably go so far to say that's my favorite part of the wedding day. But, the fact remains that in the end I'm there to shoot a WEDDING... and weddings are about 2 people coming together to join their lives. That is an incredibly emotional thing and we, as photographers, are given the responsibility of capturing it.

I've never received an email from a client saying, "I didn't even know you were there!" I talk, laugh, joke with my clients throughout the day. It makes them comfortable having me around and I feel like I get better images because of it. I'm definitely not a pure photojournalist but I take the responsibility of documenting their wedding day very seriously.

So after thinking about all of that I decided to do and entire blog post only showing "moments" from the day... no portraits, no details. The only images I had any hand in "staging" were the ones from the "First Look" and those I only told them where to stand. The rest were as real as they get.

So here's the contest.

If you're a photographer I want you to blog an entire wedding with no portraits, no details and no staged or directed shots. I don't care if you've already blogged the wedding. Go through and pick out the best moments and show me what you've got.

Leave a comment below telling me you want to be a part of the contest. You'll have 6 days to blog it. Next Thursday I will go through all of the entries and pick my 5 favorites. On Friday I'll post the finalists and we'll have a vote. Monday the winner will be announced.

One last thing... This is not about getting everyone from Facebook and Twitter to vote for you. I'll be checking up on everyone to make sure their not campaigning. Telling people to check out the contest is cool but none of this "I REALLY need your vote to win this contest" stuff I see all of the time. OK? Cool.

THE WINNER will receive a FREE 8x10 10 spread (20 side) album from Madera Books. (or an equal credit toward another size album).

Okay, now on to the images.

I love how everyone in the room has a hand in helping her get her dress on, haha. Only on a wedding day is that normal.

The first look and a quick prayer.

I LOVE this shot of Veronica and her dad watching everyone enter the ceremony. I was able to get this because I had my good friend and awesome photographer, Victor Sizemore shooting the processional. Good second shooters give you the freedom to take risks on the wedding day to get images you couldn't if you had to get the "safe shot".

Another great father/daughter moment.

A few shots from their communion that I love.

Shooting the recessional is always one of my favorite things. The couple is always so excited and usually shows a lot of emotion.

I also love focusing on the couple during the toasts. There's always a lot of great reactions.

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[February 4, 2011] Chelsea Patricia said:
Count me in!
[February 4, 2011] JenK said:
Michael! These are amazing. I'm so glad you shot Veronica and Jason's wedding. Veronica and I were just talking about how glad we were that you and Victor stayed to shoot the whole reception. I've been spreading the word about you two!
[February 4, 2011] Deborah Zoe said:
I'd like to play:) I'm posting mine on Monday of next week. Thanks!!
[February 4, 2011] Vegas Wedding Photographer - FogartyFOTO said:
I can't believe how colorful and sharp and magnificent these photos are. But then I can. Beautiful!!!
[February 4, 2011] Katie Lewis said:
I would love to participate! I'll be posting tonight!
[February 4, 2011] Hayley said:
We are totally in! :)
[February 5, 2011] Tara said:
Hey.... Not a photographer, but a floral/event designer... Can I blog a wedding that I love with the said details and enter on behalf of the photographer? Or just for me I guess! Have one in mind and love the look of your albums and would love to have a shot! =)
[February 5, 2011] Jan Garcia said:
would love to join. thanks!
[February 5, 2011] Hillary gamble said:
I love this idea! I'm blogging at least one, partially for the contest and partially just because I love it!
[February 6, 2011] Johnny5 said:
I'll see if I can find a wedding to blog. Love your shots from this one. I want to see the portraits!
[February 6, 2011] Shang said:
Such a great contest! I'm posting my entry on Monday!
[February 6, 2011] Yolie Ramirez said:
I would like to participate. Thank u! I love the books specially because you have the colors of my wedding.
[February 7, 2011] Kat Forsyth said:
I'm in! I'm no photojournalist, but I think this will be great to try. I'll try get it up tomorrow!
[February 8, 2011] Spring Smith said:
I'm in!!!! This is such a great idea :)
[February 8, 2011] Kenny Grill said:
I want to be in your contest!
[February 9, 2011] Lizzi said:
Your images are amazing... please count me in! I'm keeping my fingers crossed!
[February 10, 2011] Andy Dunn said:
Hi Michael. maybe too late and not an actual blog post, but still in the spirit of the comp. Andy
[February 10, 2011] Kat Forsyth said:
I've got to say, I was looking through all the entries so far, and I already know who I think should win. And it's not me. I'm who I WANT to win. :-) My post is here:
[February 10, 2011] Kat Forsyth said:
I've got to say, I was looking through all the entries so far, and I already know who I think should win. And it's not me. I'm who I WANT to win. :-) My post is here:
[February 10, 2011] Ryan Gladstone said:
Thanks for creating a contest that celebrates photojournalism and capturing the moments of the wedding day! My entry can be found here:
[February 10, 2011] Ashley Turner said:
I'm in! Nothing like waiting until the last minute, huh? I love this idea :)
[February 10, 2011] Monica said:
Well... hopefully just in the nick of time...
[January 23, 2012] carpet cleaning Melbourne said:
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[November 17, 2016] James said:
I conceive this website has got some rattling superb info for everyone. Dealing with network executives is like being nibbled to death by ducks. by Eric Sevareid.

This was one of my favorite weddings from last year and I'm just now getting around to blogging it. It was a collection of some of my favorite people to work with and it was at an amazing venue.

Wedding Coordinator: The amazing Angel Swanson
Florist: Kristin from the Treasured Petal
Cake: Melanie from Sweet and Saucy Shop
Venue: Rancho Las Lomas

Kristin (the bride) is a graphic designer and designed all of the stationary for the wedding. It was amazing. So much thought went into everything. Everything involved in the wedding fit together so perfectly. From the invitations to the color of her shoes, even to the color of the clothes she wore during their engagement shoot! I LOVED this wedding.

I love this shot of Kristin's mom helping her get ready... and if you look closely you can see Jessica Claire in the reflection as well. She's my favorite second shooter. :)

A couple of sweet moments from the first look:

I think parents often get overlooked during the wedding day. I love shooting the father walking his daughter down the aisle. Its always such a great moment, and you can tell how proud Kristin's dad was that day.

I also love shooting the parents during the ceremony. There are always so many great moments.

A few portraits on the amazing grounds at Rancho Las Lomas.

The couple with Angel Swanson, one of my favorite people to work with!

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[January 31, 2011] Jon S6 said:
Skills, love it. Crisp, clean, awesome.
[January 31, 2011] Jeffrey Neal said:
Dude, you have been blogging a storm. So stoked that your living your dream. Awesome wedding. I really hope I get to hang out with you at WPPI. I miss you man.
[January 31, 2011] angel swanson said:
awww -- you know you're one of my favorite people to work with, too! love, love, loveeeeee all of these images (but you already knew that!). definitely an all-time favorite wedding for me.
[February 1, 2011] SvetlanaHillKovich said:
Thank you so much for blogging more! I love to see your work! =]
[February 2, 2011] debb campbell said:
I missed the wedding day but helped at bit prior to with crafty was amazing well designed and done. I esp enjoyed the pics of the parents, my High School buddies, Dave and Susie. Your skill at capturing the mood and the 'heart' of the people you photograph is stellar!
[February 2, 2011] Edmund Prieto said:
You are still the man! The expressions you catch are priceless.
[March 6, 2011] Daniel Balboa said:
Beautiful work as always.
[August 5, 2013] Clipping Path Outsource said:
Its always a great moment, no words it is a nice photography.
[August 22, 2015] Anonymous said:
awww -- you know you're one of my favorite people to work with, too! love, love, loveeeeee all of these images (but you already knew that!). definitely an all-time favorite wedding for me. Clipping Path Service

In the fall I shot Kevin and Danielle's wedding in California. It was held at Rancho Capistrano, a really beautiful property in South Orange County. Like most Southern California days it was pretty much perfect with beautiful light and amazing weather... if you're in to that sort of thing. :) I think my favorite part of the wedding though was seeing how the two families interacted. I've been to a lot of weddings but I'm not sure I've ever seen two more loving families. It was a really great thing to be a part of. Here are a few favorites from the day.

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[January 21, 2011] Lane Dittoe said:
Mr. Norwood, i love that wedding party shot!
[January 21, 2011] Clark Lara II said:
Awesome Work! I am little jealous about everything you shot.
[January 21, 2011] amy said:
Pure goodness!
[January 22, 2011] SvetlanaHillKovich said:
Amazing Job once again! Every picture shows their personality and love just perfectly!
[January 22, 2011] SvetlanaHillKovich said:
Amazing Job once again! Every picture shows their personality and love just perfectly!
[January 22, 2011] FogartyFOTO said:
Your shooting here is so clean and bright, consistently. Such high energy and so much beauty. Simple, elegant, organic - I just love it.
[January 24, 2011] Helen (Dogeared) said:
CUTEST and BEST cake toppers ever!

It's been too long. Let's just leave it at that.

This is Kenny and Bri. They were clients when they hired me a year ago but after their engagement shoot, wedding in Anguilla last summer, lots of meals and time hanging out they're now great friends to Cyndie and I.

In November Bri called and told me she wanted to surprise Kenny with a trip to New York. We set the whole thing up and she pulled off a flawless surprise. He had no idea they were coming here until they got to the airport! I love a good surprise. :) They came and stayed with us for a few days and while they were here I shot a day after (5 months after) session for them. This was a lot of fun.

All of this stuff was shot within a couple blocks of our place here in Manhattan.

Here are a few of my favorites.

These are the steps of Liv Tyler's townhouse around the corner from us. I guess it would make sense that she has the best stoop in the neighborhood. Ha. Did anyone see her dad on American Idol? He was actually pretty cool. Not annoying at all like I expected.

I LOVE this image. It has a very old world quality to it that I really like. It was processed with a film grain product that my friend Edmund and I have been working on for a while. I think we're almost done with it. Keep and eye out for it.

We went up to our roof for the final few images. I love it up there. Its such an amazing view of the city. I think I'd go up there a lot more if I didn't have to climb 7 flights of stairs to get up there. Haha.

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[January 19, 2011] Cathy and David said:
These are beautiful man. I'm sure the couple will be THRILLED with the images. :D
[January 19, 2011] Bri Grill said:
Ooooohhhhh snap! You're awesome!
[January 20, 2011] chipgillespie said:
7 flights = totally worth it...
[January 20, 2011] SvetlanaHillKovich said:
Simply Beautiful! Always looking forward to seeing your work! ;)
[January 20, 2011] Terri Lindholm said:
Fabulous images. Great light and I love the city backdrop!
[January 21, 2011] Josh McCullock said:
You've gotta love a bride who braves the cold to create awesome photos!
[August 5, 2013] Clipping Path Outsource said:
It is a wonderful shot.awesome, I LOVED this wedding.
[September 7, 2015] Peter Majdan Nottingham said:
great images!

This incredible Nigerian wedding was held at the Penn Museum in Philadephia on the campus of the University of Pennsylvania. It might be the most fun I've ever had at a wedding... well at least one I was shooting, haha. I want to shoot more Nigerian weddings... and more at the Penn Museum. So great.

The bride, Bola, is a wonderful photographer based in Philadelphia. It's always such an honor to be asked to shoot a photographer's wedding... it's also a bit nerve wracking. Haha. But you always know if you're shooting a photographer's wedding that you'll have plenty of time for photos, and more importantly, time in good light! We made the most of our time that day, here are some of my favorites:

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[October 23, 2010] Doyin said:
WOW! These look so amazing, got my crying all over again! It was a please meeting you at the wedding and your work is amazing! Can I just say..... THAT IS MY GORGEOUS STUNNING ADORABLE FRIEND! She looks so stunning!
[October 23, 2010] Ayesha said:
Stunning images. Bola you and Gbolabo looked amazing!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! everything is so beautiful. Great job Michael.
[October 23, 2010] Wande said:
OH MY GOSH!!! These photos are amazing!!! Bola and Gbolabo look absolutely stunning. I remember you dancing to Motown Philly with us. Awesome job!! :)
[October 23, 2010] Fisola said:
The pictues are amazing!!! Bola and Gbolabo, you guys look so adorable. Great job Michael
[October 23, 2010] Kathryn said:
Michael- absolutely 100% stunning. Bola must be thrilled. She is insanely gorgeous!!
[October 24, 2010] Bola said:
Our photos are AMAZING Michael - we absolutely love them! Thank you so much for helping us relive our wedding day!
[October 24, 2010] Bola said:
Our photos are AMAZING Michael - we absolutely love them! Thank you so much for helping us relive our wedding day!
[October 24, 2010] Kathy said:
Michael, I completely agree with you about this being one of the best weddings. Ever. The couple was beautiful and you masterfully captured the essence of their day!
[October 24, 2010] Kathy said:
Michael - I completely agree with you about this being one of the best weddings. Ever. The couple was beautiful and an absolute pleasure to work with. You've masterfully captured the essence of their day!
[October 24, 2010] Kathy said:
Michael - I completely agree with you about this being one of the best weddings. Ever. The couple was beautiful and an absolute pleasure to work with. You've masterfully captured the essence of their day!
[October 24, 2010] Hilary Felton, Country Meadows Florist said:
Kathy forwarded these shots to me...can't wait to see more! I'm the florist who did this event. The photo of the guest tables is spectacular! Please let me know when I can buy copies for my're truly a master at your trade! I look fowward to hearing from you! Hilary
[October 24, 2010] jenberry said:
what a gorgeous wedding. sophisticated. i love the groomsmen shot. they look so natural, happy and fun. also love the lipstick shot and how the light wraps just around her face.
[October 25, 2010] Tunji Sarumi said:
...simply amazing
[October 25, 2010] Kathy said:
Sorry for the triple post - part of the joys of using my iPad from a hotel room with a poor wireless signal! :)
[October 25, 2010] Kathy said:
Sorry for the triple post - part of the joy of using my iPad from a hotel room with a poor wireless signal! :)
[October 25, 2010] Gloria said:
Absolutely gorgeous images!
[October 25, 2010] B. Gresham said:
Dude, it's been too long. This wedding is gorgeous, and I'm loving your tones through the portraits. Inspiring stuff.
[October 26, 2010] chipgillespie said:
Dude! You still shoot weddings?!? Cool! I'm just messing with you -- phenomenal shoot, brotha. Can't wait to see more...
[October 26, 2010] CO said:
Beautiful images. The reception hall is fabulous! love the lightning, love the brides shoes, and the reception dress. UBER-FAB!!!
[October 28, 2010] Viviane said:
Amazing pictures...awesome job Michael!I would love to get some pict. for my portfolio!
[October 28, 2010] TEE said:
[October 29, 2010] Daniel Balboa said:
That venue is stunning. And the Limo shot is classy. :-)
[October 29, 2010] Fola Adewole said:
Gorgeous, gorgeous....Bola and her hubby look fabulous...
[October 31, 2010] Ovue Irune said:
Amazing!!! Great Job. Brings back memories. Wish we could replay the wedding all over again. Can't wait to see more of your work.
[November 1, 2010] Hannes Uys said:
Amazing ring shot Michael!
[November 8, 2010] Jason Armond said:
Amazing. I love this wedding. Nice Work Michael
[November 9, 2010] omojesu said:
Congratulations to Onada. I love love love the pictures. Great job Michael
[November 14, 2010] TGA said:
these are beautiful!!! you did a fantastic job! i know bola is pleased!!
[November 19, 2010] Steve Elmer said:
This is one awesomely detailed and classical coverage of a rad wedding. So goooood!
[November 21, 2010] Rad said:
Very nice!
[December 30, 2010] full lace wigs said:
sounds good
[January 15, 2011] Carson said:
Wow, what amazing images. Nice Work.
[May 2, 2011] Haven said:
good list.
[August 25, 2011] Yinks said:
Wow. Now I wish I was there too but the photos suffice beautifully. Bola you glowed and your shoes- mm mm mm! Great coverage here! Congrats to the happy couple! Nothing do you!! :)
[August 10, 2012] cheap lace wigs said:
very good, love it, this blog is beautiful..
[January 10, 2017] Daniel said:
Normally I do not read post on blogs, but I wish to say that this writeup very compelled me to try and do it! Your writing style has been surprised me. Thanks, quite great article.

So this afternoon, Jaclyn and Nate Kaiser, of The Image is Found, both jokingly twittered that they are making a new rule that they'll only travel to places that Jet Blue or Virgin America fly to. This spurred a little Twitter debate between Nate and I about airlines and it got me thinking about why I make the choices I do when I travel.

I'm not sure whether it's apropos or ironic that I watched the George Clooney movie, Up In The Air, on a flight to New York but I sure did identify with Clooney's character and his quest for frequent flyer mile domination, haha. As photographers, we get the opportunity to travel more than the average person. Over the past few years I've traveled a ton and since we moved to Manhattan earlier this year, the past 6 months I've traveled even more than usual. I've found that if you do it right you can both enjoy your travel more and make your travel and destination weddings more profitable. I thought I'd blog about the things I've figured out regarding air travel.

#1 Pick an Airline

There are a bunch of airlines out there and I'm not going to try to say that one is "best" because the "best" airline for you might be different than the best airline for me. The first consideration should be your location. Which airlines have hubs in or near your city. If you're in Dallas, American would be you're best bet.  Houston, Continental would be a good choice... etc.

The benefit of choosing an airline with your city as a hub is that you'll have the most direct flights available. This is super important as a frequent traveller. Layovers make your travel days way longer, increase the chance for delays and generally suck. The more planes you take, the more chance there is for a flight to be cancelled/delayed...etc. If you fly direct, there is no connecting flight to miss even if your flight is delayed. Also flights in and out of hubs are, for the most part, cheaper and there are way more available to choose from.

Another consideration when choosing an airline is where they fly. One of the reasons I chose Delta is that when I was choosing an airline is that they were in talks with Northwest to merge and become the largest airline in the world. Either them or their partner airlines fly to more destinations than any other airline in the world. An airline like Virgin America or Jet Blue may meet some of the criteria but they are quite limited in the cities they serve. So if you choose them there's a good chance you'll have to fly other airlines at some point. Pick an airline that will take you pretty much anywhere you want to go and allow you to earn miles on all of your flights, not just on flights to cities they fly to.

#2 Stick with that Airline

Frequent flyer programs benefit "frequent flyers" and you'll never be a "frequent flyer" if you're flying a different airline every trip.  All airlines have frequent flyer programs but the benefits vary greatly between airlines. If you fly a budget airline such as Jet Blue or Southwest, basically, the only benefits to frequent flyers is award travel (free flights). With full service airlines you'll still get the award travel but you'll also get a ton of other benefits.

#3 Rack up the miles

Once you reach elite status, usually 25,000 miles in a calendar year, you get all kinds of fringe benefits. Here's a list of a few:

Priority Check In. Frequent flyers always have their own check in line. There's no waiting in a line of a hundred people at the airport anymore to check your bags.

Free checked baggage. With Delta, my guests and I get up to 3 bags a piece at no charge and the weight limit is 70lbs not the usual 50lbs. This alone is worth hundreds if not thousands per year.

Priority Security Screening. At most airports there is a lane for first class or elite travelers. Again, no more waiting behind a hundred people. Security screening now only takes a few minutes.

Priority Boarding. As a photographer this is one of the biggest deals. When I travel with my camera gear, the last thing I want to do is gate check it. I want it with me the whole way. As a frequent flyer with elite status I get to board the plane before the general public, meaning there will never be a time when I get into the plane and the overhead compartments are full.

FIRST CLASS. This is huge when you fly a lot. I've never paid for a first class ticket but I now fly first class almost exclusively... easily 90% of the time. Delta, and most other airlines give free or very low cost upgrades to their frequent flyers. It makes a big difference having the extra legroom but the biggest difference is the "shoulder room".  The fact that there are only 2 seats in first class where three fit in coach makes all the difference in the world. There's never a time when I worry about who is going to be sitting next to me in first class, but every time I have to sit coach I dread the waiting game of watching the people file in. I just know when I see the 6'5" 350lb mountain man, he's going to sit right next to me. Also, meals and drinks (even alcohol) are free in first class which is pretty nice.

Priority baggage handling. I think this is one of the coolest things Delta does. Whenever I check a bag a special tag is placed on it and upon arrival my bag will be among the first delivered to baggage claim. No waiting around for 30 minutes as bags trickle on to the carousel.

Bonus Miles. Once you make it to elite status, you get between a 25% and 125% bonus on your travel. Once you get to a certain point miles start adding up like crazy.  At the beginning of the year this year it took me 5 round trip flights from LA to NYC to earn the 25000 miles for a free flight. Now it takes only 2.5 round trip flights because I get a 100% bonus on all travel... fly 5000 miles, get 10000 frequent flyer miles.

#4 Don't sweat it if you have to pay a little more to stick with your chosen airline.

If I were to fly American Airlines I'd have to pay $25 each way to check one bag. Sticking with Delta saves me *at least* that much over another airline. If the difference between tickets is even more than that, the fact that all of my miles are with one airline more than makes up for it. The average cost in miles for a free flight is 25,000 miles.  If I have 6000 miles with Delta, 8400 with American, 3700 with United...etc, it doesn't matter that I've got 18100 miles in total because they're with 3 different airlines. I'm still 16400 miles from an award ticket. Don't worry about paying a little more for a ticket with your airline, you'll get it back later.

#5 Pack light.

If its possible carry everything you need on. The time you'll save by not checking bags and not having to wait for them at baggage claim is worth way more than having your choice of 14 pairs of shoes and 23 outfits for that week long trip.

There are lots of other tips I've picked up but this should do for now. Maybe this will help you, I sure wish someone had told me all this a few years ago. :) 

If you have any tips I'm missing here leave me a message in the comments. I'd love to hear them!

Since posts without pictures are boring, here is an image from a wedding I shot in Anguilla (in the British West Indies in the Caribbean) last month. I'll be blogging the whole wedding this week!


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[August 22, 2010] Lara said:
I'm a Delta girl through and through too. Great post!
[August 22, 2010] Rachel Perry said:
Oh my goodness... I can't wait to see the rest of that wedding!
[August 22, 2010] Taylor said:
Blah blah blah blah blah RAD PICTURE!!! ;) Seriously, good advice, especially for someone starting to rack up miles. Virgin is just starting service to DFW this fall but AA flies everywhere and their prices are among the cheapest out there. Anyway, back to the image...such a looks freakin' awesome though and you better blog the whole wedding soon!
[August 22, 2010] 10.11. Makeup said:
Stunning. Soooo beautiful. Bri, you look amazing- of course :) Can not wait to see the rest!!
[August 23, 2010] chipgillespie said:
According to your sister-in-law, streaking through the security checkpoint is another way to get through quickly...
[August 23, 2010] Travis Hoehne said:
Michael...that's a killer shot! Seriously...really good! On a side note, I thought you were taking me on that wedding? I guess Cyndie was a better roommate ;)
[August 24, 2010] Jeff said:
Totally with you - great post outlining why everyone should choose one airline, and stick with it. I've been a Delta guy for what seems like forever, and now with the NW merger they are even better than before. Plus I feel like the domestic first class service and seats are way better on Delta than on the other biggies. However, I think United wins on international business class service. Or Singapore Airlines.
[August 24, 2010] Bri Grill said:
Your "blah, blah, blah" got us talking about making an airline commitment soon... and of course... love seeing how awesome you made us look!
[September 22, 2010] Morgan Taylor said:
WOW! This is amazing! I am putting it in my folder of curated photos that inspire me!
[October 14, 2010] Dorothy Snyder said:
Stunning photo!
[May 19, 2014] Bernice A. Johnson said:
Your all images are looking very nice
While working on an album from a wedding I shot last year, I came across one of my favorite wedding party shots of all time. I don't try to do too much with wedding parties. I don't have them in crazy poses, jumping over each other or posing like Charlie's Angels. I'm not trying to make them look like models posed like they're too cool for school. This is a wedding. They're friends. I want them to look like they're a bunch of friends having a great time on the best day of the bride and groom's life. Simple, classic, timeless... at least that's my intention.

Sometimes I get close to what I'm after, this time I got exactly what I wanted from a wedding party photo. I love *everything* about this photo.


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[July 30, 2010] Jessica Zodikoff said:
This is one of the best wedding party photos I've seen. Love your philosophy.
[July 30, 2010] Fred Egan said:
Very good point Michael. Your/our clients will thank you/us as the years go on.
[July 30, 2010] Heather said:
Such a prefect shot!!!
[July 30, 2010] Adam Nyholt said:
Good stuff, Michael. I definitely agree with your philosophy, and love the shot.
[July 30, 2010] jenberry said:
i agree. natural. friends. real. i thing this is the perfect example. full of life
[July 31, 2010] Tracy said:
Its natural and its wonderful. Definitely prefer this over the posed stiff shots.
[August 3, 2010] Jon S6 said:
That's a fantastic shot!
[October 15, 2010] Mary said:
love it love it love it.
[November 6, 2010] LaVonne Crawford @Adorations said:
Agreed! Perfect! Thanks for sharing! Love it!

Last month I travelled to Dallas to shoot Taylor and Amanda's wedding at the Old Red Courthouse in downtown Dallas. Its probably most famous for being where JFK was shot. In fact all of the outdoor portraits were taken right next to the infamous "grassy knoll". Fascinating, eh?

Anyway, here a some of my faves from the day.

I've got to give Amanda some props. It was about 16 degrees that day and she was such a trooper. Sooooo cold, and she never complained once! My kind of bride! :)

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[February 27, 2010] camille said:
photos look great! your exposure makes me jealous. :) good stuff!!
[March 1, 2010] Lissette Q Garcia said:
You are so incredibly talented. I am sooo happy to see you blogging more often so people can see the genius at work.
[March 2, 2010] jeret slack said:
Great post cute couple. Amazing images once again :)
[March 2, 2010] Matt Paddack said:
That blue wall was sweet! To bad you didn't have more time to shoot there.
[March 3, 2010] bob Parsons said:
[March 11, 2010] Rachel Perry said:
I love that dress! You wouldn't happen to know what designer it is, would you?
[March 16, 2010] Nessa K said:
That backlighting is absolutely DREAMY!
[March 17, 2010] Dominoe Imus said:
Seriously, you made that bride look so gorgeous, you could have fooled me and said it was 70 degrees outside, she looks so calm and comfortable. Beautiful!
[April 6, 2010] jenberry said:
love the blue wall contrast. gorgeous. and of course the walking into the sunset photo. excited for your brave move to NY. so incredible.
[May 17, 2010] Suzanne said:
Loved these pictures ... and especially the one with the bubbles! Fabulous!
[May 19, 2010] karl Bratby said:
suoer set of images
[June 10, 2010] Michael Roberts said:
Breathtaking images, couple is adorable.
February 19, 2010 Weddings

Since we're smack in the middle of winter... (well most of you are, we don't really get winter here in Orange County) ...I thought I'd pull out a wedding from last summer that was never blogged to warm you up a bit.

This wedding was designed and coordinated by Courtney Toney of Joyful Weddings and Events, one of my favorite people to work with. The flowers were by another one of my favorite vendors, Kristin Brancaleone of The Treasured Petal. The wedding was held in the backyard of the bride's parents home. Calling it a backyard really isn't fair though as it would give most other backyards an inferiority complex.

Carl and Kelsey were so fun and so easy to work with. Loved this wedding.

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16 Comments Add A Comment
[February 19, 2010] Kayla said:
Gorgeous! So pretty!
[February 19, 2010] Shawn Kloster said:
Killer job, man! Looks like that was a rough day. ;)
[February 19, 2010] kristin @ The Treasured Petal said:
you rock, michael! you're so good at photographing fluffy pink weddings; who knew? but seriously, these turned out amazing. such a fun day!
[February 19, 2010] jessica claire said:
i always forget how freaking good you are when you don't post weddings for a really really long time. this is FAB photography, great job.
[February 19, 2010] Hayley said:
love your detail shots!!! and actually my favorite pictures are the ones you took during the ceremony. you are good!
[February 20, 2010] Matt Paddack said:
You know you shoot too many awesome weddings when a wedding like this just gets "skipped" for 6 months or so. I agree with Jess though, this week of productivity has completely reestablished your awesomeness.
[February 20, 2010] courtney toney said:
Yay!! Love these two and it was so fun to work with you on their wedding! The photos are stunning. I could look at them all day.
[February 20, 2010] Bethany said:
I do not know if you remember me but I just wanted to let you know this wedding is absolutely amazing!! God I just love your work!!! BRILLANT
[February 21, 2010] Jamie said:
What a cool wedding party!! Love everything!
[February 22, 2010] Anne Nunn PHotographers said:
beautiful! You are so talented! :)
[February 22, 2010] tim tab said:
love it! thanks for sharing!! If ever I do get married I'll do my best to get you out to chicago and capture my day !!! haha...
[February 22, 2010] jenberry said:
that last photo is naturally beautiful. It's a moment/memory gorgeous.
[April 22, 2010] Lindsay Chavez said:
Love this collection of images! I especially love the details! :)
[June 10, 2010] Nicole at Southern Weddings said:
Gorgeous wedding, love all those pretty details and the last shot of the bride against the groom's shoulder, it's so sweet!
[June 19, 2011] lindsey said:
Could you please tell me where you got the bridesmaid dresses? I LOVE them!!!
[June 22, 2011] Alyssa said:
Marriage is the happiest thing in the world!!the bride is so beautiful! it's a cool wedding party!happy day!!