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San Juan Capistrano Mission Wedding Photography | Brenna + Brett

Today there won’t be a Tuesday Top 5 post. Instead, I have a wedding to share. A very special wedding that totally made my week, nay my MONTH. So I think it makes sense to post it on the day I usually reserve for talking about the highlights of my week, right?! Brett and Brenna’s San Juan Capistrano wedding last Saturday was so much more than just a wedding for me…it was an INCREDIBLE learning opportunity.

Last December, when I was ready to take my career to the next level, I joined the [b]school. The [b]school is a private online community of photographers, started by [b]ecker who is one of the biggest wedding photographers in the country, perhaps in the whole world.  The [b]school is all about photographers learning from other photographers and everyone helping each other be better, which of course makes the industry better as a whole. Beyond just creating this amazing community, [b]ecker really goes above and beyond by personally sharing his knowledge with [b]schoolers. He often will choose [b]schoolers to shoot alongside him at his weddings. Which is truly the ULTIMATE learning experience. The thing is, the opportunities are coveted. I never thought I’d ever get select by [b] to shoot with him. But I wrote it down as a goal last January and set it aside. All year, every time [b]ecker had a wedding, it seemed I was already shooting a wedding of my own. Oh well, I thought, I’d probably be way too scared to ever shoot with [b]ecker anyways. Then finally this November, he posted he needed two shooters for a wedding. I was available! But what were the odds he’s even choose me?? Needless to say I almost fell off the couch when I saw his email asking if I’d like to tag along. YES, I would! And that is where Brenna & Brett come in…

Saturday wasn’t just my day to learn from one of the best wedding photographer, it was Brett & Brenna’s wedding day! And I got to help capture their love story, which is what I love. Brenna is so my type of girl– vibrant, stylish, a ham for the camera, and in starry-eyed love. Brett can be quiet and calm, but when he gets comfy he totally lets loose and becomes a big goofball. Brett and Brenna fit together. Their love is BIG, just like their personalities! And I couldn’t have been more thrilled to document that crazy big love they share.

Thank you Brenna & Brett for being awesome. Thank you Lexi, my fellow [b]schooler who shot the wedding too for being a great carpool buddy, shooting buddy, and an all around wicked fun girl! And thank you SOOOOOOOOOOO much to [b]ecker for being so generous with your time, giving me the opportunity to shoot with you and see first hand how you work your photographer magic, and for being so open and honest! I will always remember this awesome wedding, and I can’t think of a better way to wrap up the 2010 wedding season!!!!!!! And now…pictures!

Brenna’s late grandmother’s rosary was wrapped around her bouquet. A truly sweet detail.

Brenna’s wedding colors were taupe and red, so when I saw this red chair in her mom’s house, I knew I HAD to photograph her shoes on it! And Taylor, the flower girl, is just so sassy! Love!

Gahhhh, Brenna! You are stunning!!!

Their ceremony was held at the Cathedral at Mission San Juan Capistrano! The Cathedral is GORGEOUS!!! Such a breathtaking place for a ceremony.

Loved the bows on the bridesmaids dresses and the red shoes they wore! Such chic details!!

Even the priest was practically in tears over their first kiss! SO special!!

I quickly grabbed this shot as the bridal party was walking to the old Mission for portraits. This shot turned out to be one of my favs of the day!!

A good second shooter catches little moments, when the main photographer is taking care of the big picture. While [b]ecker was grabbing portraits of the bridesmaids, I snapped this shoe shot! LOVE those sexy shoes ladies!!

Then [b]ecker went to photograph Brett and the groomsmen, so Lexi and I had some playtime with Brenna & the girls!! Love this fun candid shot!

Brenna!!! It’s not even fair how STUNNING you are!!!

It rained on Saturday. A LOT. But luckily their was a break in the rain for our portraits! And the good news? That gorgeous overcast light! Look how amazing Brett & Brenna look!!

These two have winning smiles!!! Their kids are gonna be super smiley and cute, I can guarantee it!

I love these shots because they really show the day. A little wet and rainy. But super warm and cozy in the love department!

This might be my FAVORITE shot of the day! I know, no faces! But there’s something about it!

At the end of the portraits, the sun peaked through the clouds and created the MOST dramatic light, which resulted in the photo on the left!!! KILLER, right?? Then when the sun went away we all headed to the car. And I snagged this shot of Bret & Brenna walking. Again, it totally sums up the day!!!

The wedding had some stunning decor!! Look at those big beautiful roses on the cake! And then another detail I LOVED was their heritage table, filled with old family wedding and engagement photos! So much history! And it shows how valuable wedding photography truly is– not just for the bride and groom, but for their kids, grand kids, and great grand kids too!

Loved the submerged floral centerpieces and orange uplights! Seriously brides, if you are considering lighting for your reception, I say DO IT!! It adds so much to the look and feel of your reception!!

The toasts were full of laughter & tears!

And the first dance? Well it was SWOON WORTHY! Brett and Brenna are fabulous dancers!!!

This shot? It just makes me LOL!!! I realized I don’t post enough funny reception shots, so I thought this would be a good place to start!

Another LOL! Brenna was calling out to her single lady friends to get up for the bouquet toss! The bouquet toss is very serious business. Don’t mess with it.

See what I mean about serious business? These ladies are FIGHTING for that bouquet!

The night ended with a sparkler send off! I have never actually seen or done one of these so I was SUPER stoked! [b]ecker asked me to shoot from behind the couple and follow them through the arch because I am so tiny. It was a great way to give the couple another perspective. So here’s the shot I captured. It’s got motion blur because I was actually running while shooting it. Not really how I shoot, but this was a learning experience and so it was super cool to try something new! So I wanted to share the results!

The last shot of the night. Perfect way to end an perfect day!!!

Lastly… here is some photobooth fun of me, Lexi and [b]ecker!! How HILARIOUS are we? Answer: soooo very.
  • [ b ] - bravo! well done! it was great having you along. you did a fantastic job!

  • Lexi - Loved working with you Ashleigh:) So fun to see such a different perspective on the same day. These shots are beautiful!

  • Tira J - Yay Ashleigh! Your images are outstanding! Beautiful work. I am so glad you had this opportunity to shoot with [b]ecker. He is the greatest teacher. Check it off the list.

  • Jen Johnson - Ashleigh, these are such beautiful images!!! Excellent work!!!

  • Corinna See - Ashleigh, these are great! I just checked out Lexi’s images too. You both did a wonderful job. I’m a [b] schooler who shot with Becker a few weeks ago. What an amazing opportunity right?

  • Alex - Aweeeesome!

  • Calley O'Henley - Ashleigh, Loved all of your pictures!!We were so glad to have you and Lexi there to take more shots!Thank you for sharing the day with us! ( and the pictures, of course!:)

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