JACE & JON
- Getting ready: Hyatt Centric At The Pike in Long Beach, CA (groom and groom)
- Ceremony and reception: Aquarium Of The Pacific in Long Beach, CA
Wedding photos at Aquarium Of The Pacific:
I had the privilege of photographing Jace and Jon’s same sex wedding celebrations at the Aquarium Of The Pacific after a mutual colleague had recommended me to them. This incredibly sweet couple had been together for years and shared plenty of memories, but had decided the time had now come to tie the knot. From the emotional reactions as they read their pre-wedding gift cards, to the dramatically-lit portraits throughout the evening, this wedding at Aquarium Of The Pacific was an absolute pleasure to photograph.
Getting ready photos at the Hyatt Centric At The Pike:
The day started at the Hyatt Centric At The Pike hotel, situated just around the corner from my studio in Downtown Long Beach. Myself, my second photographer Charlene, and our assistant Natalie, drove over with the car loaded with photographic equipment. We knew that the Aquarium Of The Pacific was a challenging venue to photograph, but we had come prepared!
Both Jace and Jon were getting ready in separate rooms, surrounded by their siblings and parents. There were lots of beautiful candid moments to capture, not only as the grooms read the gift cards they had received from each other, but also as their family helped them add the final touches to their suits.
Pre-ceremony portraits at the Hyatt Centric At The Pike:
They had decided to hold a first look session, but were mixing it up by doing a back-to-back first look so that they both saw each other at exactly the same time. After capturing some candid shots of their reactions, we did a short portrait session around the Hyatt before continuing to photograph on the short walk over to the Aquarium Of The Pacific. The venue was just closing to the public for the day, meaning that Jace and Jon had exclusive use.
Pre-ceremony portraits at the Aquarium Of The Pacific:
Anybody who has visited this Long Beach aquarium will know that it is very dimly-lit, with the blue hued tanks providing the main source of light. For photography this can be tricky, but we had come prepared with not only high quality lenses and off-camera flashes, but also the experience of having photographed here before. In these Aquarium Of The Pacific wedding photos I captured Jace and Jon embracing along a candle-lit walkway and alongside a medusa filled tank, aiming for creative shots through the use of dramatic lighting techniques.
Ceremony photos at the Aquarium Of The Pacific:
It was then time for the wedding ceremony itself, and both the grooms’ mothers walked them down the aisle hand-in-hand. We captured candid moments and expressions as Jace and Jon read their vows, as well as wide-angle shots taking in the spectacular surrounds.
Post-ceremony portraits at the Aquarium Of The Pacific:
Reception photos at the Aquarium Of The Pacific:
After another short portrait session with the newly married couple around the Aquarium Of The Pacific, we moved on to the reception that was being held in a lavish private club under an immense blue whale sculpture. From the elevated second floor, one of us was able to capture this complete scene as the grooms had their first dance, while the other photographer was at ground level capturing more intimate shots and expressive reactions.
Following the mother-son dances, the party really kicked off, with speeches and a traditional Japanese banzai toast, as well as plenty of fun in the slow-motion photo booth.
I usually like to sneak out for some nighttime portraits with my bridal couples during their wedding reception, but here the whole event was being held within the dramatically-lit indoors of the Aquarium Of The Pacific. Nevertheless, I think the final silhouette image of Jace and Jon, backed by an immense fish tank, was one of the most dramatic of the night and summed up just how spectacular this venue can be for wedding photography.
Wedding photos at Aquarium Of The Pacific:
It was an utmost pleasure and honor getting to photograph Jace and Jon’s wedding at the Aquarium Of The Pacific, and I wish them a lifetime of love and joy!
April 3, 2015