Gorgeous Engagement Shoot Inspired by 'The Notebook' is the Ultimate in Chick Flick Inspo Styled Shoots!

hey girl….I think we can all agree that The Notebook is one of the all-time best of the bunch chick flicks - an old fashioned true love romance for the ages! And that’s why this talented team of wedding pros cerated this charming and old fashioned engagement styled shoot inspired by the Ryan Gosling Rachel McAdams movie and of course book by Nicolas Sparks. We love the gentle beauty and slowed down Southern feel of this shoot!

Wedding Vendor Credits:

Photographer Infinite Imagery

Hair & Makeup Stylist Marissa Torres

Videographer: http://www.instagram.com/dvphilm

Event Planner Carmen Navarro Designs

Styled Shoot Designer My Infinite Adventure with Natasha Hayes

Dream San Diego Engagement Sesh with the Beach, the City and, of course, a Dog!

From the get-go, Lauren and John’s relationship has never been easy. John’s military commitment often took him away and they had to quickly figure out how to keep dating while they were apart. They came up with having “wine and scotch dates” through FaceTime. This made it so cool and meaningful to incorporate that into the session; Lauren had her glass of wine and John had his glass of scotch! Cheers to being together!

Before heading out to the beach for the sunset, they brought out their fur baby for some pictures. Have you ever seen a double doodle!?!? Says Photographer Camila Margotta, “He [meaning the dog!] is just the cutest and, from the minute I met him, I wanted a double doodle for myself. It was awesome to be able to get some great pictures of the three of them, together. Ending the session on the beach in Coronado was amazing. The good thing about a Coronado beach engagement session in January is that you pretty much get the beach to yourself! We even found a random boat that had washed up on shore and made for a pretty cool photo prop!”

Tender Couples Joshua Tree Engagement Session by Parallel 33 Photography

We love the tenderness and intimacy evident in this gorgeous Joshua Tree engagement sess! Photos like these really show more than the subject’s emotion- they capture the artists’ heart as well. Scroll down to get to know Parallel 33’s Artist photographer Bree Hulan.

And the couple? Says Photographer Bree: “Dave plays like 15 instruments or something and even has recorded with some bands for their albums! He also has battled some gnarly things and is still ridiculously positive and upbeat.

Tully has a super adventurous spirit and has moved all over the place. Wisconsin to Nashville to San Diego and now to Virginia. I love her no-fear attitude and go with the flow style. She has a peace about her I can’t describe!”

Bree, we think you described both of them perfectly with your artist’s eye and your camera lens.

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Hey! I'm Bree Hulan, a born and raised San Diegan photographing adventurers and people down for a freaking awesome time.  I’ve got a country and wanderlust spirit, and I’m not afraid to get a little dust on my jeans. Traveling and photographing people out in nature is my jam. I am especially in love with the ocean, warm light, the mountains, and running around in meadows with my shoes off. Also, hammocking and burritos, duh.

My purpose is to stay true to the world and people I photograph. I want the real YOU and your relationships to shine. I want to facilitate and capture the incredible outpouring of joy that happens when you’re just being you with the ones you love!

Those candid, fun, running/dancing, laughter-filled moments. Don’t worry, I’ll give ya some posing guidance too!

Bride and Groom and a Dog Named Toby - an Ocean View Engagement Session in Del Mar California

Every time wedding and engagement photographer Paul Douda was with Ariel & Jeremy, everyone was full of giggles! Says Paul, "We had the best time with them at Seagrove Park in Del Mar, California for their engagement session. We were also joined by their pup named Toby, who is VERY excited that his humans are getting married this September 2018! You can tell just by the look on their faces how happy Ariel and Jeremy are as well." It was such a special moment to close the session out on their very own stadium seats from Fenway Park. These seats are very special to Jeremy not only because they remind him so much of his life in New England attending games at Fenway Park (before the remodel) but also because Ariel proposed to him on these very seats on the balcony of their home in San Diego! Check out their "how we met" and how SHE proposed story below as told by the bride-to-be, Ariel!

How We Met by Ariel Vollero: "I (Ariel) had just moved to San Diego in late July 2016. It was my fourth day at my first real job and my co-worker Noah was taking me around to the different courthouses to become familiar with my role. That Thursday, we were in El Cajon courthouse in front of Department 4 when he stopped to talk to an attorney named Jeremy Elias, who had a client on our program. We were briefly introduced and then I stood by silently as they had a conversation. The next day, I was observing in Department 9 in the Downtown courthouse. I walked in, took a seat in the second to last row and who should be at the podium doing his thing, but Jeremy, the attorney I met the day before. I was so excited because I didn't know many people in San Diego and was excited I recognized someone after my first full week at work! And to make matters even more exciting, he recognized me and came and sat down next to me! He started asking me what I was doing, helped me with my observations, and invited me to spend Thanksgiving with him, you know, casual first conversation stuff. He then gave me his business card and said to text him. we talked for a little more and then he got up to leave and said again, 'no really, text me'. So I did just that, but from my work cellphone. That is, until I realized he was definitely (maybe?) trying to ask me on a date. I eventually gave him my personal cell phone number and we agreed to go out on Saturday night! And we have been together ever since!"

How SHE Proposed by Ariel Vollero: "It was like any other night, Jeremy and I were sitting outside on our balcony on our bleacher seats. We were talking about eloping, a conversation we had been having for awhile. He then made a comment, 'well, we can't elope yet. We aren't even engaged yet!' So I said, 'well, maybe I can change that!' And I got down on one knee, professed how deeply I was in love with him, and asked him to marry me. He was speechless and just nodding his head. He asked me (jokingly) if I had a ring for him and I, unfortunately, didn't. We found a keychain flashlight, took the key ring off, and I got down on one knee again and asked him again! Of course, he said yes again! The next day, we were going to the Barrister's Ball at his law school, so we were getting all dolled up. Early in the day, we went to Robin's Brothers The Engagement Ring store and I bought him a real engagement ring. That night, before the ball, when we were all dressed up, I got down AGAIN, with a new speech, and asked him to marry me, officially! Later on, once we selected our wedding venue (Tom Hams Lighthouse) Jeremy surprised me at the altar in front of a few of our friends and our moms and returned the proposal with an engagement ring for me as well." 

Tim Otto Photography brings Beauty and Drama to your Engagement Photos

We caught up with local wedding photographer Tim Otto to get a little insight into this talented artists' aesthetic and why so many couples rave about working with him for their engagement and wedding photography! 

Q: So Tim how would you define your style?
T: I like to blend a variety of styles when I photograph weddings: everything from a photojournalistic editorial approach to a contemporary fashion edge to classic romantic style.  I am comfortable photographing grand elegant celebrations at large venues and small intimate weddings on the beach. I can give direction to make sure everyone looks great and is in the best light but also can observe and make sure I'm in the right place to capture the spontaneous moments.

Q: Tim tell us a little about you.
T: I have been photographing for over 20 years but the last 15 have been devoted to weddings, engagement sessions and family portraits. I can’t imagine doing anything else. I truly love what I do and I aspire to produce the finest photography I am capable of without compromise. Creating photographs that you love is priceless. I was drawn to wedding photography and telling the story of the day by capturing the personalities, emotions and the desire to create amazing photographs!

Q: You are clearly a creative art photographer, why weddings?
T: I always enjoyed photographing people and capturing their individual spirits; I think this is what drew me to weddings. I love weddings! I love telling the story of the entire day by capturing the many personalities and emotions on display as the events unfold.  I want to capture not only what people look like, but show what they feel like.  I want to give my clients, dynamic and beautiful photographs that they will treasure for a lifetime! I want to create an amazing and fun experience by making my couples feel comfortable in front of the camera without interfering with the flow of the day. A wedding is a celebration of love with family and friends; truly an amazing event.  I am honored and privileged be part of your day.

Q: We know you love to travel, where have you shot? 
T: I have photographed weddings through out the United States and countries around the world including Dominican Republic, Italy and Mexico. 

Q: Anything special you like to do on days off?
T: I love deep sea fishing, camping in the High Sierras, watching the Chargers and Padres, cooking, music, wine, sushi, landscape photography, road trips and traveling to exotic locations... of course with my camera. 

Thanks Tim for these lovely engagement photos! See more of Tim's photographic talent on his website and galleries

San Diego Featured Engagement Shoot: Stormie + Katie's Secret Garden Shoot

The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett was the inspiration for Katie and Stormie's engagement session at the Felicita County Park in Escondido. It's also been the inspiration throughout the entire wedding planning process-- Stormie even proposed to Katie during the "Garden of Lights" Christmas celebration at the Encinitas Botanical Gardens! Lush, romantic landscapes and twinkling lights have been a staple in everything so far, so we can only imagine that they will be present at the wedding as well, keeping with the theme. What a fun way to cherish something that the couple loves so much!

University of San Diego Couple Shares Stunning Balboa Park Engagement Shoot

Our beloved Paul Douda has "wowed" us once again with this stunning engagement session. However, it's not just the photographer that makes the pictures. Kelly Sheeran and Daniel Perez have such a bright light shining between the two of them that these pictures truly lit up our screen. The two met in college at the University of San Diego, and they have been together since then! Apparently Daniel had been trying to ask for her parents' approval multiple times last year, but Kelly kept figuring out the surprise. So, he was finally able to get everything approved and set up without her knowledge and proposed in December of last year at Sunset Cliffs! The two plan on having their ceremony at the Immaculata at USD followed by their reception at the US Grant Hotel downtown! This local couple will most definitely have a breathtaking wedding in 2018! 

Love, Laughter, and Louboutin Bring a Black and White Engagement Shoot to Life

Who doesn't love a good pair of perfect, black patent leather pumps? They are the ultimate shoe to dress up or down. We'll take it even further. Who'd doesn't love a good pair of black patent leather Louboutin pumps? You can never go wrong with Louboutins!

Talia Benzaken feels the same way and made sure these bad boys made their debut in her engagement shoot at Balboa Park. Talia and her fiancé, Jon Rapel, took full advantage of the beautiful backdrops that Balboa Park offers. From the breathtaking architecture to the jaw-dropping gardens, this couple saw it all.

All of this while in 4 inch Louboutin heels. Talk about girl power!

Photographer: Alex Bruce Photography// Venue: Balboa Park

San Diego Featured Proposal: Rustic Romance

Paul Douda Photography has done it again. He beautifully captured this couple's best day (so far!) of their lives. However, pretty soon they will share an even better day when they say, "I do." Take a peek at this fun loving couple and their romantic, rustic proposal at Baileys Palomar Resort!

Featured Artist: San Diego Wedding Photographer Jay Resh

Meet our featured Artist of the Day, San Diego Wedding Photographer Jay Resh. 

It is my goal, through my photography, to express the emotion of important moments, and tell life stories that will live vividly through time.
— Jay Resh

As a child, Jay spent as much time as he could exploring NYC’s MET (Metropolitan Museum of Art), Natural History Museum, and Hayden Planetarium. It was easy to see that his interests where deeply rooted in the arts and sciences. It was particularly at the MET where Jay fell in love with the idea of exploring his creative side.

The colors and contrasts of Romanticism painter, J.M.W. Turner, and the naturalism of form and detail in the sculptures of the great, Gian Lorenzo Bernini played a very large part in the formation of Jay’s interpretation of artistic styling.

Nothing seemed as inspiring to Jay as living within a world built upon, and surrounded by art. For Jay, photography was the artistic outlet he was looking for. It continues to provide him with the ability to be creative, and the mechanics and software processing involved with his photography also satisfies his love of sciences. It was the perfect combination.

Find more information on Jay Resh Photography on his website.

It's Marry Me Monday with a Surprise Beach Proposal [spoiler: She Said Yes!!]

Marry Me Monday starts with a surprise beachside proposal at Bird Rock La Jolla. 

Marry Me Monday!

@Bird Rock, La Jolla

Ryan had planned his proposal to Leslie for a long time. Everyone around them knew it was happening but no one knew when. Wedding photographer Johanna Kitzman of Studio Frejya (who happens to Ryan's sister-in-law) had shown up earlier to this beach, a spot that holds special meaning to the couple and to Leslie's family, to put some writing in the sand. Of course a written proposal in the sand ended up being a big attraction for everyone who arrived at the beach and everyone wanted a snap of the message!! 

Says Johanna, "Luckily, Ryan texted me as he arrived at the location and I was able to ask everyone to step away and we instantly had the beach for ourselves. Under the pretense of helping me with a family session, Ryan led Leslie down to the cliffs. Nervous as he was, he barely made it to the spot before he got down on one knee, and with shaky hands pulled out a stunning diamond ring."

It took Leslie a few moments before she realized what was going on and when he pointed at the text in the sand her hands flew up to cover her mouth as she screamed out in joy. A resounding YES and a few tears later they celebrated with some champagne at a spot that will always hold a dear place in their heart.

Congratulations Ryan and Leslie!! 

Congratulations Ryan and Leslie!! 

One of our favorite Wedding photographer's favorite photographs from 2016

Tim Otto is one of our favorite San Diego wedding photographers and it is easy to see why!

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Tim Otto [one of the nicest people you will ever meet!] is the kind of guy who at the end of the year can't wait to sit back and review all the weddings and engagements he photographed to reminisce about all the love, fun and memories he made with his couples. Here are Tim Otto's favorite wedding photos from 2016: they clearly show the heart and soul he puts into the weddings he photographs.  

When you look at his work you can see that Tim likes to blend a variety of styles when he photographs people in love and weddings:  Tim works with everything from a photo-journalistic editorial approach, to a contemporary fashion edge, to classic romantic style.  Says Tim "I always enjoy photographing people and capturing their individual spirits; I think this is what drew me to weddings. I love weddings! I love telling the story of the entire day by capturing the many personalities and emotions on display as the events unfold.  I want to capture not only what people look like, but show what they feel like.  I want to give the bride and groom real, dynamic and beautiful photographs that they will treasure for a lifetime! I want to create an amazing and fun experience by making my couples feel comfortable in front of the camera without interfering with the flow of the day. A wedding is a celebration of love with family and friends; truly an amazing event.  I am honored and privileged be part of your day."  Yes Tim, we can tell! Please enjoy Tim Otto's favorite photos from 2016!

Puppy Love: Engagement Photography Sessions Featuring Man's Best Friend

Everyone knows the saying that dogs are man's best friend, and we couldn't agree more! So, today we want to focus on the newer trend of featuring your best friend in your engagement and/or wedding photoshoots! The idea couldn't be any more perfect: it's a photoshoot that already features two people so in love, that they chose to spend the rest of their lives together.  So, why not include the non-humans that have been there for you throughout all of your ups and downs?  The ones who have sat beside your bedside when you weren't feeling well. The ones who are always so excited when you walk in the door from work. The ones who are just as excited for your wedding day as you are. We are saps for a good love story here at SanDiegoWedding.com, and adding dogs to the mix just makes us melt. Check out our list of top San Diego wedding and engagement photographers who would be tail waggingly happy to do your engagement session with your best furry pals! 

Photographer: MKL IMAGES

Attention engaged couples one of San Diego's fave engagement shoot locales is now open!

One of SanDiego's most popular engagement session photography locations is open for the season! The famous Carlsbad Flower Fields welcomes hundreds of engaged couples each year looking to capture their love amongst the beautiful endless fields of flowers.

Amateur photography is free but professional photography requires an advance application, a photography fee and proof of insurance so be sure to read and follow their rules for photos in advance.

Colorful Ranunculus are a beautiful pop of color

Colorful Ranunculus are a beautiful pop of color

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Lavender Fields and Lots of Love Fill this Joyful Southern California Engagement Session

Beautiful lavender fields and dappled sunlight through oak and pine tree branches at the Highland Springs Ranch and Inn (famous for its lavender festival) make this joyful engagement session with photographer Rosanna Hanson a treat. Rosie & Israel wanted to incorporate lavender in their wedding and take advantage of these beautiful California lavender fields at the end of the season with this romantic day of love.

And our most popular Pinterest pin of 2016 was......our favorite too!

And here it is our most popular Pinterest pin from 2016....with 28,711 people loving this photo of "the doggie paw engagement shoot" by Derek Chad Photography ... see the full engagement photo session here.... we get about 38,000 viewers on our San Diego Wedding Pinterest boards each and every month so be sure to follow us here. Thanks Derek Chad it looks like tens of thousands of people love your work as much as we do!