VI & JAMES
- Getting ready: Private residence in Chino Hills (bride) and Sheraton Los Angeles Downtown Hotel (bride and groom) in Los Angeles, CA
- Ceremony: Saint Paul The Apostle Church in Chino Hills, CA
- Reception: Taglyan Cultural Complex in Los Angeles, CA
Wedding photos at Taglyan Cultural Complex:
I first met Vi and James at my studio in Downtown Long Beach about a year before their glamorous wedding at Taglyan Cultural Complex. It was such a delight and pleasure getting to know them and I was honored that they booked me there and then! We did an e-session together in Downtown Los Angeles and at the Griffith Observatory, and I was really excited to reconnect when their special day rolled around this summer.
Getting ready photos at a private residence in Chino Hills:
While James is Filipino, Vi is Vietnamese, and they were starting the day with a traditional Vietnamese tea ceremony at her parents’ place in Chino Hills. My wife Charlene and I drove over early in the morning to capture the bride as she was getting ready with her bridesmaids, wearing a gorgeous purple ao dai dress.
Her sister then escorted her to meet James and his entourage, and they performed a tea ceremony to honor their elders. James also playfully pretended to propose all over again before securing a necklace around his bride’s neck.
Ceremony photos at Saint Paul The Apostle Church:
We then headed over to Saint Paul The Apostle Church which is also in Chino Hills for their Catholic ceremony, with Vi changing into a classic white wedding gown. Her father escorted her down the aisle of this modern and spacious church, and I captured the couple’s reactions as they exchanged vows in front of their friends and family (including one little boy who was obviously being kept awake!).
Portraits at Saint Paul The Apostle Church and Downtown Los Angeles:
After numerous Catholic rites and rituals, they made their recessional walk down the aisle as “husband and wife” and we had a short couple portrait session within the church’s dramatically-lit interior.
It was then around an hour’s drive west into Downtown Los Angeles where we had another portrait session outside the MOCA Building and its iconic fountain, before heading to the Sheraton Los Angeles Downtown Hotel where Vi and James had a room booked. It was here that they did a gift exchange, with James treating his bride to some gorgeous shoes and a watch, and freshened up before the reception kicked off.
Getting ready photos at Sheraton Los Angeles Downtown Hotel:
Portraits at Taglyan Cultural Complex:
I joined the couple in their limousine for the drive over to the Taglyan Cultural Complex, grabbing a couple of creative portraits en route. Once there, we also had time to squeeze in a few more portraits of just the two of them, with Vi and James allocating plenty of time for photography throughout the day. In addition to a bird’s eye portrait of the bride nestled in her white gown against a bright red carpet, we also managed to steal a shot in the middle of their lavish ballroom venue before the guests arrived.
Reception photos at Taglyan Cultural Complex:
The reception then kicked off with the couple’s first dance in the midst of the smoke-filled dance floor, followed by speeches and toasts from those closest to them. I captured Vi’s emotional reaction as her sister gave a touching speech, as well as the parental dances. Vi then changed back into her Vietnamese ao dai and the couple personally thanked each table of guests for sharing in their special day, before changing again into a glimmering silver evening dress.
Throughout the reception, I captured Vi and James popping a bottle of champagne together during their cake cutting ceremony and all the fun of the bouquet toss and garter removal. While the wedding guests hit the dance floor, we snuck outside for a nighttime portrait session around the Taglyan Cultural Complex, utilizing its illuminated trees and fountain features.
Wedding photos at Taglyan Cultural Complex:
Vi and James’ wedding at Taglyan Cultural Complex was particularly memorable as they were so sweet and caring towards us throughout the day. Rather than just photographers, they treated us as friends, and it really meant a lot to both Charlene and myself. I was thrilled to be the Los Angeles wedding photographer for this special union and wish Vi and James so much joy and happiness in their life together.
August 29, 2013