Los Angeles Wedding & Boudoir Photography – Hazelnut Photography » Los Angeles Wedding & Boudoir Photography - Hazelnut Photography

 

Before we really settled in to our house, I took meetings with new clients at coffee shops.  It definitely wasn’t my favorite.  Finding a good table wasn’t easy, it was always loud and so awkward staring people down as they walked through the door to try to figure out if they were the ones I was meeting.  It was a few years into my business before I really transformed the formal living room into a meeting space.  Best.Decision.Ever.  It’s quiet, the coffee is great and I’m positive that the first couple walking in the door is the couple I’m waiting for.

I didn’t think I’d made too many changes here in the last few years, but I just recently saw a photo from the Glitter Guide feature (and a few more on this post) and realized it’s almost completely different!   I’m on the hunt for a new coffee table, but I’m so happy with how this room has slowly transformed.  A little less antique, slightly more modern and so many colors!  And even more functional!   When McC was born, we juggled all of our rooms and the studio pulls double-duty as my office too.  A much more efficient use of the space and that ENORMOUS cabinet.  So, a little update on the studio space!

 

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Joella played a pretty amazing role in Hazelnut Photography, and I don’t think I ever really told her about it.  See, she was one of those very early supporters of this little business of mine.  Back in 2008, she hired me to shoot an event, in Paris.  That event gave me the push to quit my full time job and pursue photography full time.  I wasn’t sure how it was all going to work out when I got home, but Paris.  So, I was sure I would figure it out.  It was such an incredible experience and I am still so grateful for it.

So, over eight years later, she called me for an engagement session and I was so thrilled to oblige!  We met up at USC and walked around a bit in the freezing cold.  The campus is so beautiful and these two were so fun to watch together. Then we chased the sun to a little rooftop downtown where it was even colder, and getting progressively darker.  Joella & Oro were such good sports.  They posed and nuzzled and pretended the whipping wind wasn’t freezing cold.  They were rockstars and let me take some time to really get it all right.  And it was all so good!

Joella & Oro: Thank you so much for a fantastic session!   You two were absolutely wonderful and I couldn’t appreciate it more!  Hope you enjoy!

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And just like that it’s 2017 and engagement session season has begun!   How did it even happen so quickly?  Every time I turn around it’s the start of a new month!

I started the year with these two, in one of those magical places.  I don’t make it down to Orange County too often these days, but this place is incredible and stomping around these green fields with Colleen & Irvin was kind of the perfect Saturday.  I couldn’t possibly be more excited to get the season started with these two!

 

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2016 was pretty incredible.  Looking back over it through these images makes me feel so good.  These people that entrust their wedding days to me, I am absolutely honored to know them.  Thank you beautiful people for letting me do something that I love so much.  I hope I do you all justice!

It wasn’t easy, but I picked a few favorites from 2016.  Okay, 50 favorites.  But it was too hard 🙂

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I’ve been spinning a lot lately. I kind of love getting totally lost in the loud music, just moving my legs and really sweating.  It clears my mind and makes me feel invigorated for a great day!  As I’m clearing my head, I like to think through the day ahead of me and what I’m going to have going on.   The other day I was thinking about pulling my favorite images from 2016, which ones they might be, why I liked them, etc.  And it suddenly occurred to me that my favorite images are probably not my clients’ favorite images, for a whole host of reasons.  While I probably love the expressions, the light, the location, the way the dress is draped across the floor, my clients might not really see any of that.  They probably love the moment, remembering how they were feeling, the way he is looking at her or simply the people that are included in the frame.  I decided to ask a few of my favorite clients from 2016 which single image they would say is their favorite, and why.  I’m so happy with their responses because they point to so many reasons why this job of mine is so important.

 

PINAshleigh & SethThe Athenaeum

While I have so many wedding picture favorites, this picture has and will always be so special to me.  Not only is the moment of walking down the aisle officially as husband and wife so special and such an important part of a wedding, but if you look closely – you can see my mom on the left side looking at us.  I lived with my parents until we got married and while the wedding was SUCH a happy occasion, it was also a milestone of closing another chapter of my life and separating from my parents.  My mom is my best friend and this picture captured almost the exact moment of where both of us had to let go of each other.  I am so happy that Jordana caught this special moment that most would have missed. 

 

PINCourtney & BrianSaddlerock Ranch

Ever since I can remember, I’ve dreamed about my wedding day. But it wasn’t until I met Brian that I eagerly anticipated getting married. Throughout our engagement, and with a lot of Pinterest inspiration, I imagined all the tiny details that would make the day special. While there were many things that didn’t go quite as planned, seeing him for the first time that afternoon was magical. My smile in this photo still hasn’t faded and I am delighted I get to spend the rest of my life with this incredible man. 

 

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Erisa & Broch, Alexandria Ballrooms

There are definitely multiple images that I love, but I think a “favorite” stands out pretty easily. It probably relates to our venue choice / style of the wedding somewhat, but image 1694 stands out. I love it because it’s candid and captures us at a key moment in a flattering way (we’re married, we’re both smiling and in a moment together, posed ok, etc). 

*I just wanted to put a little note here about second shooters, because sometimes people ask me if they really need one.  Yes, yes you do!   Because while I was taking the big group picture at the top of the aisle, my second shooter was taking this more intimate shot of the couple.  And it’s their favorite!

 

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Hillary & JoeThe Surf & Sand Resort

It is almost impossible to choose just one picture from our wedding day! I chose this photo because it shows that in this second, we were officially married, completely relaxed, and just lost in the moment. It was so beautiful that evening as the sun was going down at the Surf and Sand Laguna Beach, and I remember taking those moments to really just be thankful for the gorgeous ceremony we had just had and for the fact that we had found each other and were about to start the rest of our lives together. 

 

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Laura & WillRose Hill Plantation

One thing we really wanted to do at our reception was to dance with our friends and family. Little did we realize there wouldn’t be much time for that! For the last song the band played Free Bird and our guest took the votive candles off the tables and made a see of light around us. We didn’t plan it but it was magic. You captured all of our joy from the day in this one shot! 

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Michaela & Mark, Malibu

It’s my favorite photo because I love being held in Mark’s strong arms. Right by the clashing waves of the ocean it was one of the best moments of the wedding day! 

 

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This is our favorite picture. It just feels like quintessential Palm Springs. On the day of our wedding, we were drained after we spent 30 minutes taking group pictures in the scorching 108 degree desert. We were ready to go back to the air-conditioned hotel room when Jordana found a location for us to take more couple pictures. Little did we know how captivating the background and scenery was at that time. Once we received the final proofs from Jordana, we were stunned on how this particular photo came out. The lush and green palm trees along with the sunlight made the perfect background. Even with the amazing background, the focal point of the picture is on us. Of all the beautiful pictures Jordana took that day, this one encapsulates the day perfectly.
This is our favorite photo from our wedding although it is very hard to pick just one. It encompasses the connection Ben and I felt through out the entire experience. It also captures the mood of the whole event that we strived for- Minimalist, modern and romantic. 
This is our favorite pic from the night: the two of us on the dancefloor during our Bruce Springsteen impersonator’s performance. We’re both joining in and singing along with him, clearly having the best time. It was such a hard secret to keep from our guests — including our families — that he was coming and such a true moment of joy getting to see everyone crowd around him, singing and dancing their hearts out once he appeared. What we wanted more than anything with our wedding was the feeling of unbridled fun and this moment totally encapsulates it. You can also see the two of us filled with so much joy, singing along with The Boss, sharing in the moment with our very, very favorite people on the planet. It’s such a special pic. In fact, it’s the wallpaper on Jessica’s phone and has been since the wedding!!! 
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Some of these I might have picked too, but maybe not for the same reasons.  I love that these images evoke their feelings in that moment, and I hope they will continue to do that for many many years to come!  I’m so grateful to have been a part of these beautiful days; thanks so much for participating guys!