Weddings

Lars & Sarah :: Palos Verdes & Huntington Beach Wedding

When people talk about modern weddings, where couples are really thinking about what they want, scaling back, and remembering what's most important, I think my brother and his wife really hit the mark. They had a private ceremony in Palos Verdes on Thursday at sunset, at a stunning location that meant a lot to Sarah when she was growing up. It was just them, her brother officiating, and me, and it was so very special. They opted to stay in a lovely nearby hotel that night and really got to enjoy being married without any distractions.

Then Friday was the parrrrtay at the Newland Barn in Huntington Beach. It's the cutest location that you wouldn't even know was there, with food from one of their favorite vegan restaurants and all their favorite people. What more do you need, right? Being the amazing party planner that she is, Sarah made sure everything looked lovely without being fussy.

I've already shared their engagement photos and a few from the ceremony, so here's a selection of my favorites from those two days. It's always hard to narrow down favorites, but when it's family it's extra hard!

They really lucked out with the weather, it was perfect both days - not always a guarantee in March, even in SoCal!

Big thanks to my dad for taking a few shots that actually had me in them! :)

Family to the rescue when the groom cuts his finger!

They've been together 10 years, so I already know their marriage is going to be amazing - they need no luck wished upon them! I can't wait to see what life brings for them.

P.S. Hooray for adding two sisters-in-law to my family in 6 months!

Lars & Sarah Sneak Peek

Just had to share a few bits from my brother's private wedding ceremony on the cliffs in beautiful Palos Verdes, California. Sarah's brother officiated and made us all tear up with a wonderful speech. It was a perfect evening!

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They got married on their 10 year anniversary, isn't that awesome? I know they don't need any luck in this next chapter of their lives, but I will wish it for them anyway!

xo

Heather & Rick :: Coronado Island Wedding

If there are any Trojan fans reading this, I suggest you avert your eyes now. Heather and Rick met at UCLA in 2004, and their lovely, intimate wedding at a private residence on Coronado Island this fall was a reflection not only of their alma mater, but their easygoing, loving spirit that made the day full of laughter and deep emotions. These two weren’t about to let a little rain get in the way!

So let’s start off with the details, shall we? They tried to be as eco-friendly as possible, and put personalized touches into everything. 

Coronado Island UCLA Wedding Ellingsen Photography

I think the biggest hit was their NuptiAle and personalized glasses with a photo of them and their dog, Hope!

Coronado Island UCLA Wedding Ellingsen Photography
Coronado Island UCLA Wedding Ellingsen Photography
Coronado Island UCLA Wedding Ellingsen Photography

Their custom painted peg people cake toppers were the cutest things I’ve ever seen. A couple after my own heart, including their dog like that. :)

Coronado Island UCLA Wedding Ellingsen Photography
Coronado Island UCLA Wedding Ellingsen Photography

They kept it simple with the wedding party as well – Rick had his two best friends as co-best men and Heather’s sister was her maid of honor. Everyone was up for anything photography-wise, which always makes my job easier. We had SO much fun!

Coronado Island UCLA Wedding Ellingsen Photography
Coronado Island UCLA Wedding Ellingsen Photography
Coronado Island UCLA Wedding Ellingsen Photography
Coronado Island UCLA Wedding Ellingsen Photography
Coronado Island UCLA Wedding Ellingsen Photography

I just loved how Heather carried the blue and gold theme all the way down to her toes. :)

Coronado Island UCLA Wedding Ellingsen Photography
Coronado Island UCLA Wedding Ellingsen Photography
Coronado Island UCLA Wedding Ellingsen Photography
Coronado Island UCLA Wedding Ellingsen Photography

Heather and Rick opted to do a first look before the ceremony, and it was one of the sweetest moments I’ve ever experienced in all my days of shooting.

Coronado Island UCLA Wedding Ellingsen Photography
Coronado Island UCLA Wedding Ellingsen Photography

The family and wedding party made time to do portraits before the ceremony, which meant that they could get right into the reception afterward. It really made the whole flow of the day so much more relaxed! (Having an awesome sense of humor doesn't hurt, either.)

The rings! You can’t start a wedding without the rings!

Coronado Island UCLA Wedding Ellingsen Photography

Before the guests started arriving, Heather and her dad retreated to the big boat that was docked, and the rest of the wedding party went into the little cruiser to await their big entrance. Such a cool touch, right?

Coronado Island UCLA Wedding Ellingsen Photography

Rick’s niece was the flower girl, and she was going to make absolutely sure she threw every last petal. Such a cutie pie! :)

Coronado Island UCLA Wedding Ellingsen Photography

In case you were wondering, doing a first look didn’t take away from Rick’s reaction to seeing Heather walk up the aisle at all.

Coronado Island UCLA Wedding Ellingsen Photography
Coronado Island UCLA Wedding Ellingsen Photography
Coronado Island UCLA Wedding Ellingsen Photography
Coronado Island UCLA Wedding Ellingsen Photography
Coronado Island UCLA Wedding Ellingsen Photography
Coronado Island UCLA Wedding Ellingsen Photography
Coronado Island UCLA Wedding Ellingsen Photography
Coronado Island UCLA Wedding Ellingsen Photography
Coronado Island UCLA Wedding Ellingsen Photography

A few quiet moments following the ceremony to let it all sink in.

Coronado Island UCLA Wedding Ellingsen Photography
Coronado Island UCLA Wedding Ellingsen Photography

Then it was on to the reception, which, thanks to the residential location, had plenty of room for guests to either get their groove on or relax on sofas and catch up. 

Rick's friends were a crackup, and as soon as I pressed the shutter I knew this photo would be one of my favorites.

Don’t you just love the mix of desserts? Such a great idea. The lemon squares are Heather’s personal favorite.

Coronado Island UCLA Wedding Ellingsen Photography
Coronado Island UCLA Wedding Ellingsen Photography

So many lovely speeches and toasts!

Coronado Island UCLA Wedding Ellingsen Photography
Coronado Island UCLA Wedding Ellingsen Photography

Heather and Rick, you effortlessly made me feel a part of your family and I’m so grateful to have such awesome people like you call me their photographer!

xoxo

Weekend Sneak Peek

This weekend couldn’t have been busier or more lovely, and I can’t wait to share more of it with you guys. However, I’m heading out of town tomorrow through the rest of the week, so these sneak peeks will have to do!

Heather and Rick were married in Coronado on Saturday in a lovely ceremony at a private residence. These two images really represent the day – lots of emotional moments full of love, and also lots of super fun moments full of laughter.

Ellingsen Photography Coronado Island San Diego Wedding Photography Heather and Rick

I also met up with Melissa and Brandon and their sweet pup Ruby Jane at Whittier College, which is where they first met ten years ago. It was a perfect blustery fall day and we had such a great time exploring the campus!

Ellingsen Photography R Family Pet Portraits Whittier College

Hope you all are doing wonderfully! I’ll see you back here next week.

xoxo

Lindsey & Josh :: Los Angeles Arboretum Wedding

Lindsey and Josh are both the kind of people that make everyone feel like they’re their best friends. You know the type? The ones that just exude love and happiness, and have a multitude of close friends in their life that would do anything for them as a result? That’s Lindsey and Josh. So when they asked me to capture their day, it was an immediate yes. Especially since I knew it would be lovely, seeing as they’re both brilliant artists (she does mostly portraits and watercolors, he does carpentry).

She’s sister to my dear friend Mindy, so that made this day even more special. I’ve been hogging these photos to myself all summer, clutching them like a greedy kid with her Halloween haul, but it’s high time I took a lesson from L&J and shared the love.

On a warm summer evening at the Los Angeles County Arboretum, we celebrated. I absolutely loved the casual family atmosphere they created. It really felt like they were just having everybody over for a dinner in their garden!

We started out with a marathon of girly-ness getting ready in a nearby hotel. With champagne at the ready, naturally.

Los Angeles Arboretum Wedding Ellingsen Photography
Los Angeles Arboretum Wedding Ellingsen Photography

Oh, those baby blues!

Los Angeles Arboretum Wedding Ellingsen Photography-3

They exchanged vows officiated by Lindsey’s aunt, who’s a rabbi, and literally surrounded by their closest family and friends.

Los Angeles Arboretum Wedding Ellingsen Photography-8
Los Angeles Arboretum Wedding Ellingsen Photography
Los Angeles Arboretum Wedding Ellingsen Photography
Los Angeles Arboretum Wedding Ellingsen Photography
Los Angeles Arboretum Wedding Ellingsen Photography-13
Los Angeles Arboretum Wedding Ellingsen Photography
Los Angeles Arboretum Wedding Ellingsen Photography-7
Los Angeles Arboretum Wedding Ellingsen Photography

The setup and service at the arboretum was lovely. Dinner was served family-style, which was awesome because you had the convenience of a seated meal, but it allowed you to choose which entree you wanted (or combination thereof). The guests loved it, and I’m sure it made things easier on Lindsey and Josh because there was no need to worry about who’s eating what!

Los Angeles Arboretum Wedding Ellingsen Photography

These next few are a couple of the film shots I was able to snag that day, just for fun. I loved the succulent theme and the rock table numbers, it just fit in perfectly with their personalities and the location.

Los Angeles Arboretum Wedding Ellingsen Photography-Film Scans-5
Los Angeles Arboretum Wedding Ellingsen Photography-Film Scans-10
Los Angeles Arboretum Wedding Ellingsen Photography-Film Scans-12

Those who were in attendance will laugh at this shot of the peacock, because while it was amazing to watch them stroll the grounds, these suckers are loud. (Just think of the bird from the movie Up.) So when they decided to get chatty during the ceremony or toasts, we just had to laugh and wait until they were finished. :)

Los Angeles Arboretum Wedding Ellingsen Photography

Before dinner got going, we snagged a few last minutes of daylight for some portraits. Prepare thyself for sun flare overload.

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Los Angeles Arboretum Wedding Ellingsen Photography
Los Angeles Arboretum Wedding Ellingsen Photography
Los Angeles Arboretum Wedding Ellingsen Photography-30

Work. It. Girl.

Los Angeles Arboretum Wedding Ellingsen Photography

And then it was time for good eats, good toasts and good music.

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Los Angeles Arboretum Wedding Ellingsen Photography-27
Los Angeles Arboretum Wedding Ellingsen Photography-28
Los Angeles Arboretum Wedding Ellingsen Photography
Los Angeles Arboretum Wedding Ellingsen Photography
Los Angeles Arboretum Wedding Ellingsen Photography
Los Angeles Arboretum Wedding Ellingsen Photography
Los Angeles Arboretum Wedding Ellingsen Photography

Much love and blessings to you both! Thank you so much for letting me share in your celebration. (And I’m so thrilled you’re moving back to the west coast!)

xoxo