70's Disco Lovefest Wedding Inspo at Fruitcraft in Hillcrest, San Diego! Photography by Kami OlavarriaRead More
I'm not going to gush and get all emotional about how much I LOVE The Big Fake Wedding and everything they stand for and believe in, because I just did that when I photographed the Seattle event last fall. All I have to say is that I had SO MUCH FUN photographing the San Diego event and I have been freaking out so excited to share these images. This was truly an amazing team of vendors to work with and I had such a wonderful time. San Diego - you have my heart!Read More
Last month, I had the opportunity to be a photographer at an event called The Big Fake Wedding. To be honest, I never considered doing a wedding show. But this was different. The premise of the event is putting on a fake wedding so you can see vendors in action. Instead of being to a show where there are dozens and dozens of different vendors and you are just shaking hands behind a display table - you are only seeing a few (or one!) of each kind of vendor. Seeing them in action. Seeing their real work on tables. Watching them work and seeing them do their thing. The Big Fake Wedding's philosophy is to inspire local businesses AND inspire committed marriages, which is something I absolutely stand behind. The "wedding" is an actual vow renewal between a real couple, which reminds all the couples planning weddings out there that the most important part of being engaged is laying the foundation for your MARRIAGE, not just planning a wedding day. I absolutely love this company and their heart for what they do. Not to mention, it was SO fun collaborating with all these other vendors putting their best work forward. I felt like I was in a photographers play-land. I felt so honored to be one of three photographers shooting this incredible event. This day in Seattle was pouring, absolutely downpouring the whole day, which made the neon/bright color theme so fun. I loved the contrast of the gloomy day and the party full of bright colors happening inside. I'm all about bright and bold color palettes (not usually seen in the PNW!) and I was so excited when I saw the inspiration board for this event. I am so impressed with all the vendors and everything they created!
ALSO - I will be a photographer at the Big Fake Wedding in SAN DIEGO in just a few weeks! I am so excited and I can't wait to share that event with y'all.Read More
About 4 years ago, a friend from church asked me to shoot her wedding. At that time, wedding photography wasn't even on my radar. I had been doing makeup at weddings for years, but never had any interest in wedding and portrait photography. At the time I was studying photojournalism at Western Washington University, mostly doing live music photography and working for music blogs and small publications. For some reason, I said yes. Now looking back that seems crazy - if I knew how hard wedding photography is and how in-over-my-head I was, I probably would have said no. I had never even second-shot or assisted anyone, I was going in totally blind and completely just following my intuition on how I should do things. Luckily, I had about 9 months to prepare, so I spent that time learning everything I could about portrait photography and working with couples. I shot their wedding, it went great, and people saw those original images from their wedding and I ended up booking more weddings. And all of a sudden I was a wedding photographer.
I feel extremely lucky for that opportunity and for their trust. I know photographers who try for years and years to book their first wedding. Trying to get a couple to trust them with that task. I always kind of joke that wedding photography happened to me rather than me pursuing it. I feel like I owe my whole career to Whitney and Dan. If it wasn't for them, would I have become a wedding photographer? I have no idea. Maybe wedding photography still would have found me one way or the other. But the way I see it, I owe it all to them.
I took them out to their wedding venue on their 3-year anniversary, set them up with a hair and makeup team, created a bouquet for her, and re-created some wedding portraits for them. To celebrate their love and give them the wedding portraits I wish I knew how to create back then. Also as a celebration for me - that day was also my anniversary! The anniversary of my first wedding. And that's a huge day for me. There's no other way I'd rather be celebrating that than shooting with these two: the two who started it all for me.
Thank you, Whitney and Dan, for seeing something in me that I didn't see in myself back then. For giving me my start and trusting me to capture your most intimate moments. I owe my career to you.
Huge thank you to Shannon Mercil Makeup + Jamae Wiederhold hair for coming along and being my dream-team glam squad. Thanks to Jeremy Millar for coming along and assisting! He also got some gorgeous images of the day, check out his work to see what he created.Read More
The Vine and Flourish workshop hosted by Carly Bish Photography and Kristen Marie Parker was *such* an amazing way to kick off the wedding season. This was my second workshop this year and workshops will always be an important part of my personal and professional growth. We are *never* in a place where we know everything and there is always so much to learn from others. A fresh boost of energy and inspiration to carry me through the season. Being a wedding photographer can feel so lonely at times, but it doesn't have to. Fostering community and connecting with other artists is always a worthy investment and will always be a priority to me.
I can't take credit for how amazing this shoot turned out, because Carly + Kristen planned the entire thing. The styled table, the couple, the vision... it was all them. I am so thankful for the opportunity to shoot alongside them and create some images I am *so* in love with. Personal work like this is so good for the soul.
Thank you to Rob and Cici for being amazing models!
Cici's hair+makeup by Shyn Midili of Pacific BridesRead More