A First Time for Everything and Wedding Photography Moments.

There is always a first time for everything. We’re continually embracing all of our new experiences and searching for new projects to push us further creatively and personally. But for the last 10 years when we had our family portrait and special events studio business, we had always dodged requests to photograph weddings.

The thought of photographing a wedding is just exhausting. We understand the intense amount of work it takes to photograph a wedding well. It’s a huge responsibility to capture the epic day for a newly married couple. That’s why we have an immense amount of respect for all you wedding photographers out there.

Sara, our friend, the beautiful bride

Over the years, we’ve turned down many requests to photograph weddings and recommended other wedding photographer friends that we respected and admired. But a few months ago, there was an event which changed all of that for us. It began with some dear friends of ours that we consider like family.

When Sara and Shawn sent the word out that they were finally getting married, we knew instantly that we had to break out of our normal photography routine. Sara and Shawn are some of the dearest people on Earth and their love and generosity to everyone around them makes us become better people. We love them so much, we had to offer to photograph the wedding.  For us, it would be a huge honor if they agreed and allowed us to do so.

Guess what? They said, “Yes” And next question we asked was, “How many people attending?” These are all important logistical questions that we, as special event photographers, must ask.

Sara replied, “About 400 people”

We gasped, not because the number of attendees scared us, but more because they knew that many people to invite! As mentioned before, Sara and Shawn are so loved, we wouldn’t be surprised if they had over 1,000 people fighting to get an invitation.

the back detail on Sara’s dress was just stunning

There it was, our first wedding photography gig for dear, dear friends with a massive family and friends list. This was a first for us and a very special first at that. And a little, “What the hell did we get ourselves into?” for the um-tee-nth time.

The approach was very simple, as if we were shooting any other special event. But the emotions behind this shoot were so dear and deep because we were capturing a very significant day for two people that we love very much.

It was such a gorgeous day with our friends to witness from behind the lens. It was so hard to not cry during the ceremony and trying to keep the lens still at the same time. Holding back sobs of joy was not easy, especially when we’re there to capture to endearing moments when everyone else is sobbing.

View of Los Angeles from their home terrace where they’ll be married

The long day came to a spectacular reception end and we also captured the whole reception at the photo booth. Each photograph was a pure delight to be a part of. Shawn and Sara’s lighthearted, fun personalities being reflected in all of their friends and family. The best part of the day was to just be able to witness the union of two amazing people and to have something to gift to them as long lasting memories.

Wedding photography is something we’ve always avoided, but thanks to Sara and Shawn, they made our first time at capturing a beautiful wedding day so memorable.

There definitely is a first time for everything and in our case, it wasn’t painful at all. In fact, it was a life changing experience. Hopefully you’ll head out there, fearless and experience something for the first time and make it wonderfully memorable.

Just do it, especially if it’s your first time.


diane and todd

Mayor of Los Angeles Antonio Villaraigosa officiated the wedding

family and friends gathered on their lawn and decks

we all witnessed a beautiful moment on this beautiful day

Shawn and Sara as husband and wife

cutie family members enjoying the celebration

Sara and her best friend sharing a congratulatory hug

sneaking in on the niece’s conversation

Hundreds of candles lit the wedding reception till the wee hours of the next morning


{ 29 comments… read them below or add one }
  1. backcountrybelle

    Beautiful photos! I’m sure having you both as their photographers was such a pleasure!

  2. Lori Lynn

    Such an enjoyable post. I love the relaxed style of your wedding photos. Congrats to Shawn, Sara, and the both of you too.

  3. Jeremy M

    The photos of the kids on the stairs are brilliant.

  4. VeggieGirl

    What beautiful photos, great job! I love the photos of the kiddies on the steps, cute!!

  5. Angie @ Bigbearswife

    beautiful, just stunning!

  6. Sarah

    We’ve never had professional pics of our kids and family, so having those precious pics of our sweeties on the stairs are priceless. We love those memories of that special day. Thanks!

  7. Sara Sedlacek

    Todd & Diane thank you!!
    We are sooooo incredibly blessed to call you our friends. These lovely shots are such a small fraction of the wonderful images you guys captured for us that we will cherish always – we are honored to have been your first wedding and can’t thank you enough. We love you guys!!!

  8. Brian @ A Thought For Food

    I remember you talking about this event on Twitter and we all gasped when we heard 400 people! But it looks like it was such a wonderful, relaxed event.

  9. Lori @ Lemons and Lavender

    Never a doubt in my mind that you guys could tackle something as big as a wedding ceremony. Beautiful job!

  10. TripleScoop

    See you had nothing to be scared of! Great stuff as always.

  11. jenjenk

    That’s exactly how i feel about wedding PLANNING. yikes!!

    …and for the record, i suspect you & todd would be tipping over the 400 person wedding mark when you guys get hitched. 🙂

    1. White on Rice Couple

      JenJen- ha. And if when we do, you’re for hire, right?

  12. Kimberly

    How cool is Sara’s wedding dress?! Beautiful photos, Diane and Todd! One of the big challenges of shooting a wedding is capturing the intimacy between the couple and their friends, especially with such a large guest count. You did a superb job!

  13. Broderick

    Those kids are SO cute! Fun photos

  14. Kiran @ KiranTarun.com

    Gorgeous shots and you guys captured memories for them to cherish forever 🙂 I hope to someday renew our vows and perhaps get you guys to photograph? 😀

  15. Platanos, Mangoes & Me!

    So beautiful all around and you captured the moment….

  16. Amanda@EasyPeasyOrganic

    wow. what a dreamscape! I just helped a good friend shoot a wedding a few weeks ago (it’s her specialty) and it was *exhausting* … plus I got to go back to real life the next day while she headed out for another 8hr event. But, saying that, the joy of the day is indescribable. Worth it.
    Lovely job.

  17. Catherine McCord

    You’re amazing! I live for your work, but to see the pics of Sarah and Shawn truly warmed my heart!!

  18. colleen

    Beautiful. I agree with these comments. Marvelous photos. :o)

  19. Maria

    Beautiful surroundings! Lovely couple.

  20. SoupAddict

    I love that you didn’t shoot a paint-by-numbers wedding photo album, like soooo many. “Okay, shot of bride and groom’s wedding rings.” Next…. “Shot of bridesmaids in goofy poses.” Next…. “Shot of ring bearer looking shy and clumsy and cute.” Your photos show authentic moments. The kids hugging on the stairs – priceless. If I were getting married, I’d hire you in a heartbeat!

  21. Connie / Marinating Online

    Your friends are lucky to have you documenting their big day. Great job. You really show love in these photographs.

  22. Cookin' Canuck

    What a beautiful event and how lucky your friends were to have you behind the lens, capturing the moment of the day with the eye of a photographer and invested friend. Gorgeous shots!

  23. Sally

    What a challenging assignment! and you pulled it off with flying colors. (I can only imagine the pressure….)

  24. J2Kfm @ Motormouth From Ipoh

    That’s more than a splendid job, really.
    I am about to be tasked with one, but I have been shunning the opportunity just like how you have been doing. The pressure is huge, almost leaving no room for mistakes.
    But then again …. in life, one has to take up the challenge to move forward/upwards. So, maybe I will do this for a close friend of mine too.

  25. Michelle

    spectacular job!

  26. Amy

    The bride’s dress is amazing!

  27. Averie @ Love Veggies and Yoga

    I remember when I was in Boulder at Food & Light with you and you said you don’t do weddings but you had one on the books that was going to be a big event. THIS was that big event…and you captured it beautifully! And yes, what a huge responsibility to capture a wedding and my hat is also off to wedding photographers…at least if I goof up food photography, the food doesn’t complain to me 🙂

    1. Laura @ GotChocolate

      I agree with you, Averie, about the food not complaining if I mess up! “Action shots” such as these in the photos would be a true challenge and she did SO well! Something for me to aim for!

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