When Alan and I did our first destination wedding it was for family in the Berkshire’s. The Berkshire’s is a country setting in Massachusetts. We went for the weekend. We covered the rehearsal and the wedding and we managed to have a great time with the family.
Since then we have traveled to Kaui, Arizona, and Annapolis Naval Academy to name a few.
***The reasons we learned for couplies choosing a destination wedding is because their families are spread out across the country.
A 3 Day Wedding gears everyone into having a great time. The couple doesn’t feel rushed and the guests are truly engaged.
Sometimes a destination wedding can cost less than a high end venue or a golf course or country club wedding.
Our wedding was set in St Thomas on the beach. We booked a cruise invited family and friends and planned for our day in St. Thomas. The cruise left from San Juan with the first stop being St. Thomas. We reached out to the St Thomas community and found a Justice of Peace, Flowers, Limo, and one of our guests was a professional Photographer. After the beach ceremony we headed to the Ritz Carlton for lunch before getting back on the cruise ship. Not counting the cost of the cruise our wedding cost us less than $2000.00
Our guests felt our wedding was an exotic stop on their vacation.
Many All Inclusive Hotels offer wedding packages. That way your guests are likely to enjoy themselves and stay on a few days. We recommend Anna’s Adventures for inquiring about a destination wedding. https://www.facebook.com/annasadventurestravel/?timeline_context_item_type=intro_card_work&timeline_context_item_source=1417731446&pnref=lhc
Booking the photographer for a destination has two options. Booking at the location, (this can be expensive), bring one from home. Some photographers will charge extra for travel and hotel. Do your research, many photographers are eager for destination wedding business and they may not up-charge as much as you would think.
Sechrestphotos was kept very busy this October and November taking family portraits. I have a few tips for the families thinking about using a professional photographer.
- Discuss with your photographer the location. Families can choose locations that may not produce the best result. If the location has sentiment the photographer can make it work but if your goal is awesome photos let the photographer choose. The family can lead with park or country settings, beach, or city.
- Wardrobe can make or break your family portrait. Speak to your photographer with your ideas and listen to suggestions. If someone in the family is a rebel and wears plaid while everyone else is in white that family member will be the focus in the pictures.
- Time of day. Schedules often dictate the family availability but being a little flexible can make a big difference in the light and the final product.
Finally have fun. A good photography will be able to relax the family and capture the love relationships family members share.
Alan and Ina
Sechrestphotos captures many holiday parties.
We photograph corporate parties which generally are on weekdays during December. We also cover family parties which occur right up to January 5th.
Corporations want photography to provide their employees images of themselves when they are dressed up and socializing outside of their work environment. Often companies hire us to also provide a memento image, printed and framed and provided timely during the party.
The images may be shared on company websites which allow employees to comment and download easily.
Corporate holiday parties are often at hotels or simple venues that are centrally located to the employees.
Families often use photography at their holiday parties when families are together; often out of town guests who haven’t seen each other in a long period of time, or aging families are in attendance, and families want to capture the “family moments.”
These images are often very valuable and cherished over time.
Family holiday parties are often at a family member’s residence but sometimes at a centrally located venue.
We love what we do and we won’t miss a moment. Call us to schedule us for your Holiday Party.
Ina Sechrest for Sechrestphotos
After completing many Graduation Shoots I have learned some very important “Best Practices” I’d like to share.
- Location, Location, Location! Pick a location that has some meaning to the graduate. Laguna Beach, Downtown San Diego, and Local Parks are all good choices just to name a few. Talk to your graduate for what they are interested in.
- Outfits: Educate the graduate and their family on what will look good at the location. Suggest several outfit changes. This gives more meaning and insight to who the graduate is.
- Props: Props are fun. If the graduate is interested in reading, writing, sports, etc. Bring some items to utilize in the shoot.
- Timing: Pick a time of day that the light is useful to the shoot.
- Last but certainly not least: Make sure the experience is fun for the graduate and the family. I would suggest take a few family shots after you capture the graduate.
Christopher and Bethany eloped at Moonlight Beach, in Encinitas California in October of 2016. Christopher had connected with Alan and stated he was looking for a wedding photographer to capture his ceremony. He told Alan it was an elopement. He was surprising his future bride with the photographer. Bethany and Christopher are both in the Coast Guard. Christopher was stationed up in SFO and Bethany was arriving near Oceanside. They had just a few days together.
They planned their ceremony at Moonlight Beach at 2:00 with just the Justice of the Peace as their witness. The ceremony was on the bluff in a small park above the beach.
Bethany glowed with happiness and love as well as Christopher. None of their family knew. After they read their hearfelt vows Alan suggested we go down to the beach to take some additonal photographs.
Photography Shoot Challenges: There was a fence on the bluff that Alan had to manuveour around. It was a very bright day without any clouds; very difficult lighting conditions. Alan worked his magic and captured the emotion of their eleopement and some beautiful photos on the beach.
Photographers are often handed difficult lighting situations and they to make the best of it. This is some best practices:
- Use a 3 stop filter
- Place the couple in a location where the sun won’t cause them to squint
- Use a strong flash (that seems ironic with the bright light, but the flash actually takes away some shadows.
- Alan USED a HD Range on some of the shots to contrast the hight and low lights
Alan and I had the privilege of witnessing and capturing the images at the ceremony of Katrina and Adam at the beautiful Green Gables Estate venue in San Marcos, California.
Katrina is a stunning bride, hosting a large wedding party and a well attended celebration. The day was beautiful, filled with warm air and light breezes. The Green Gables Estate offered many photo opportunities which we gratefully and greedily took full adavantage of.
During the many months of planning we discussed with the bride and groom the pros and cons of capturing the large percent of images before the wedding ceremony. For Katrina the only thing holding her back, was the ‘First Look’ image.
Capturing that “First Look” is always an important piece of the ceremony photos. We assured our bride we could cature that look at the pre-ceremony photo shoot.
We needed to coordinate with the best man and time it perfectly. We were able to successfully cature that moment. We also understood that after the look, it is important to give the bride and groom a few monments of intimacy. The venue offered many locations to allow our couple some private moments.
Our pre-ceremony shoot was almost two hours. The Bride and Groom were thrilled that after their ceremony they were able to join the celebration.
Working closely together will assure a successful wedding experience for the bridal couple.
Making sure the bride and groom enjoy their photoshoot is key in “Capturing the Moments”. During Naiomi and Jeremy’s wedding we made sure they felt relaxed and enjoyed their shoot. We were short on time but still made sure to capture the emotion and the love they felt.
When the couple have a large wedding party “Fun” is what we supply. You can see how much fun everyone was having…the camera never lies.
When we met with young Sandy and her family in San Clemente; the job was for a Family Portrait for grandma. There was seven grandchildren from 2 families. We wound up spending extra time and taking individual portraits. Alan and I enjoy getting to know the familes and making sure we can get our photo subject to relax and let their personality come through.
Sandy started out shy but soon was having fun posing and moving through the shoot.
A good photographer will know how to relax their clients and how to “capture the moment” .
Alan used the natural sunlight as his main light to accentuate Sandy’s blound hair. It was at 2:00 PM when we shot this picture.