Jessica Hickerson Photography » Blog

My vision for this shoot was to tell the story of a deconstructed bride.

She begins completely drenched in tulle.
Slowly taking away the elements that make up a “bride.”
From the bouquet, to her hair, to her gown.
As each piece is taken away, what remains is just as beautiful.
And with the details forgotten she glows with confidence.
Embracing the one day she gets to play this role.
For tomorrow she will become a wife.

 

Photography + Design: Jessica Hickerson Photography

Model: Lindsay Hundley

Gown: Theia (top) + Leanne Marshall (skirt) Lovely Bride LA

Florist: FlorUnique

MUA: Lauren K. Williams

Hair Stylist: Beauty by Bristol

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It was the summer before high school.  Scott and Julia were 13 and 14, on a week long cruise to Mexico with their families. From the moment they said “hello” they became inseparable. The next four years were filled with school dances, football games, and using every one of their cell phone minutes in a long distance relationship.

They grew up together, discovering their independence at separate colleges but falling more in love during those precious weekends they could spend together. Every date, every day, and every year felt special. Julia and Scott made the most of the distance until everything fell in to place and they moved into their home in San Francisco.

Last summer, Julia went away for a girls weekend at June Lake. As she was returning from a night out, Scott appeared on the cabin’s dock wearing a suit and the biggest smile she has seen. She joined him next to the water, full of excitement and questions, as he dropped to one knee. He asked, she said yes, and they will be getting married at the same church where her parents got married in Palos Verdes.

These two are such a dream and I cannot wait for their wedding this August!

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I’m just a little obsessed with this family. Not only did I get to photograph their maternity and newborn session, but that cute little mama is my favorite second shooter and weekly coffee date. When they asked me to do an extended family session for them I was so excited! Knox is one loved 8 month old squish. Here are a few favorites:

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As a small business owner, I truly value the relationships I have with my clients. From our first email to far beyond their wedding day, I do everything I can to earn their trust while also being aware of what type of relationship my client wants. Sometimes that simply means I’m available via text for some quick questions, and other times it means coffee dates where we end up talking about so much more than their wedding.

In all honesty a very small portion of our job as a wedding photographer actually involves our camera (ironic, right?!) We are responsible for telling the story of our client’s wedding day and doing everything we can to make them feel comfortable and confident throughout our relationship. It only takes a few small gestures and a servant attitude. They come to you expecting someone to snap pictures, and as a photographer we have the opportunity to surprise and delight. Imagine all of the great things that could happen if you were to go above and beyond for each and every one of your clients!

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Here are five ways you can go the extra mile for your brides and grooms (without even touching your camera):

1. Be a resource

You have more than likely been to more weddings than them. Share what you know! Make a list of websites, magazines, blogs, etc. that your former brides have found helpful. Keep an excel document of vendors that you have worked with (and enjoyed) and pass along their name. Its a great way to build rapport with vendors as well as your bride. And yes “being a resource” might mean you are the person that bustles the bride’s dress, re-pins the boutonniere, or creates a toss bouquet. Wear your many hats proudly!

2. Ask questions

What is the couple most excited about on their wedding day? Where did the bride get her dress? Where are their families from? What details are they DIYing? Ask questions and actually remember the answers. Not only will this help you build a relationship with your clients, but it will also give you some great things to write about in your blog post about their wedding.

3. Help create a timeline

Other than a wedding planner, a photographer is the only person that understands the proper timing and layout of a wedding day. A month or so before the wedding I send my brides a sample timeline that covers the wrapping up of hair and makeup to the last dance of the reception. (Click here to see the sample I use as a starting point to create timelines for my couples. I customize it based on their ceremony start time, dinner time, and other items they set earlier in the planning process.)

4. Be kind

On a wedding day its easy to become flustered or just 100% “in the zone.” You focus on your bride and groom (which is great!) but forget about the other 100 or so people that are also watching you work. When your camera is down and you have a moment to breath, show some personality: play a little game with the ring bearer, take some time to talk to Grandma, ask the MOB if you can do anything for her. You role and personality should be kind and supportive no matter what crazy things happen!

5. Stay in touch & make yourself available

This is the big one. We’ve all heard the horror stories of photographers “disappearing” after the wedding or taking longer to deliver the photos than what was promised in their contract. Clear communication means so much to a stressed out bride! There are a bunch of little things you can do to make your bride feel comfortable. For example: answer her emails within 24 hours whenever possible, offer to do a walk-through at the venue, and send a congratulatory email or text the day after the wedding with some preview images. Its up to you to take initiative when it comes to communication.

Be open, be honest, and manage expectations, and it will only be the start of a great relationship!

 

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As always, comments and questions are encouraged! If you are interested in learning more from me please send me an email at jessica@jessicahickerson.com.

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Elena and Alan’s wedding was the most amazing way to begin 2016. They chose to have their winter wedding at The 1909 in Topanga Canyon. In the weeks leading up to the wedding the fear of an “El Nino” storm hung over their heads, but in true California fashion the forecast ended up predicting 75 degrees and the rain pushed back another week.  It was beautiful. From the perfect blush vintage details to the constant flow of happy tears, the day could not have been more perfect.

I will never forget how Elena’s sweet 11 year old daughter (also one of her bridesmaids) stole everyone’s hearts with her toast, how Alan could not take his eyes off his wife all night long, and the sound of Elena’s infectious laughter. Here are a few favorite moments:

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Photographer: Jessica Hickerson Photography

Second Shooter: Andrea Dickherber

Coordinating: Events by M and M

Venue: The 1909

Rentals: All Valley Rentals & My Lovely Events

Caterer: Fire Stone Grill

Flowers: Flowers by Maria

DJ: Rich Fandre

Desserts: Comforting Sweets

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  • Andrea - These. Are. Phenomenal. Love them all, and love all of the emotion in them!ReplyCancel

  • Christy - STUNNING images of a beautiful day!!ReplyCancel

  • Danielle Bacon - What a beautifully captured, joy-filled wedding! Those portraits. Gahhhh! The B&W image with the twinkly lights in the background – just stop it. So dang good! Beautiful work, Jessica!ReplyCancel