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Hollywood Wedding at Madera Kitchen // Ben + Katie

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I seem to always forget how hot it gets in LA in the middle of summer. We may not have the humidity of the east coast or southern states but holy moly was it HOT on Ben and Katie’s wedding day in California. It might have felt even warmer than normal because we were in the heart of Hollywood in the middle of the day in July surrounded by asphalt, cars and people. But even with the high temperatures their wedding day was absolutely perfect.

Our entire day was spent in about a 3-block radius, which was really fun. Ben and the guys got ready at his apartment while the ladies were over at Mama Shelter. If you haven’t heard of Mama Shelter or stopped by for a visit you should make plans to do so right away. It’s a darling boutique hotel with funky style, a restaurant in the lobby, a bar and lounge as well as a newly renovated rooftop bar with 360 degree views of Los Angeles. I’m fairly certain that I’ve rambled on about this before, but if getting ready photos are important to you then think long and hard about the room you will be getting photographed in because that room will have a look and feel that will be very obvious in the images. Does it have ample window light? Are the walls light and bright or are they a muddy orange or brown color? Is there a fun aesthetic that matches your vibe or is it stuffy and out dated? Is there enough room for everyone and their stuff without looking overly crowded? I know there are so many things to think about when it comes to a wedding and your hotel room seems like the bottom of the list but all I’m saying is that if that part of the day is something you want documented in a beautiful way then put some thought into your getting ready location! A few of my favorite LA spots for getting ready before a wedding are the Ace Hotel in DTLA, Mama Shelter Los Angeles or picking a home on Airbnb.

But back to Katie and Ben’s celebration! For their venue they selected Madera Kitchen, a casual eatery in Hollywood with retro décor and an open patio space. Madera is amazing for a smaller wedding because they already have so much décor that all you really need to add are florals and signage. The alter was at the front gates and all of guests gathered around, some sat and others casually stood in the back while sipping their welcome champagne. After the sweet ceremony the wedding party and I took a few laps around the neighborhood so we could get some action shots. I love being with a bride and groom in public when they are in their formal attire. The positive attention and genuinely happy honks, whistles and shouts that they receive always makes my wedding-photographer-heart melt a little bit. And Hollywood sure was excited to see this newly married couple! The rest of the evening was spent laughing, drinking, eating, dancing and celebrating Ben and Katie.

Congratulations you guys! It was an honor spending your big day with you both.

Palm Springs Fashion Editorial // #seeyouinthedesert

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Okay you guys, this is something totally different than what I normally share on my blog. I am first and foremost a wedding photographer but there are times when stepping out of my comfort zone and away from weddings can really refuel my creative energy. So today I’m sharing some of my favorite images from part one of our #seeyouinthedesert project.

Back in January my amazing friend, Allison Wagner of Allison Wagner Designs, and I decided we needed a break from our normal lives and a way to let some creative magic happen with new people in a new location. Allison is in the fashion world and creative direction is her thing so we thought we would spend a few days in Palm Springs styling and photographing a handful of ladies in the desert. Our inspiration for this project was centered on the desert and more specifically Palm Springs. Cactus, palm trees, pale pinks and greens, retro houses, sun kissed skin and festival approved looks. We came upon some rad Los Angeles fashion bloggers who happily signed up to come play with us in the sun as well as some other local LA vendors for hair, makeup, florals and a few décor elements. After all was said and done we walked away with 2 days of shooting, 4 girls, over 20 looks and 10 locations. I don’t think Allison and I really knew what we were in for with the heat and so many looks but after months of planning and prepping everything went just as we wanted and our finished product was more than we imagined.

Stay tuned for part two coming later this summer!

Lastly, Allison and I are beginning to plan a PNW project that will have a similar feel but different aesthetic so any creatives/models looking to participate in a fashion project later this year in the Seattle area let us know — more details to follow.

VENDOR LOVE ///

Photos: Jenna Bechtholt Photography

Creative Direction: Allison Wagner

Hair/Makeup: Lauren Hendrix

Florals: Violette’s Flowers

Rentals: Circa Vintage Rentals

Models: Amberli Jahn, Melissa Ziegler, Cortney Erin + Ashlynn Aleno