I often get asked “Why weddings?”. My response is simple. I love a good love story. From cheesy romantic comedies to epic historicals, they always leave a footprint on my emotions. What makes weddings so wonderful is that the stories are real. They’re YOUR story.
When Borrowed & Blue, a locally-focused online wedding resource, asked to learn more about me & my photography studio, I happily took the opportunity. I wanted to give couples more insight into my love for weddings and give them everything they need to know about our photography services.
Here’s our Q&A with Borrowed & Blue:
What photo sums up your aesthetic?
Some of my favorite moments in a wedding are the in-between moments. That second, just before lips meet or the touch of a hand to a flower girl’s head as she passes by. This photo, while not candid, still captures a quiet moment. This particular photo was taken in Half Moon Bay. The couple, newly married, enjoying a moment for themselves before their reception. I love the richness of the woods hugging the bride and groom and adding texture and warmth to the image. I can almost feel them relax into their new life as husband and wife.
What is your favorite moment to photograph at a wedding?
I know it might sound cliché but that moment when a groom sees his bride for the very first time is such a special moment. It’s a moment where his guard is down and he’s just living in that space. There’s such an emotional impact for the groom and the bride just radiates under his gaze. It’s so, so beautiful how much raw emotion can live in those few minutes.
I also love when the bride hugs her dad before turning to her groom. It’s a moment that truly tugs at the heart strings as he hands his little girl over to a new life.
What are some of the most photogenic spots for engagement shoots?
My favorite is mustard season in the Napa Valley. The land is awash in golden blooms and everything is so picturesque against the old stone buildings and sweeping landscapes of wine country.
Where else do you love to photograph?
I love the energy and texture you find in downtown San Francisco. I love going into Union Square and capturing the movement and energy that takes place in the heart of the city. Often, I search for narrow alley ways with boutique shops or quaint restaurants that make you feel like you’re in a different time and place.
Hawaii is the home of my heart and also one of my favorite places to photograph.
What’s your favorite out of all the San Francisco wedding venues to shoot at?
San Francisco has so many wonderful venues for weddings. My personal favorite is San Francisco’s City Hall. The architecture and lines in that building are just beautiful. I love capturing the breadth of the building as well as the details.
What is the first thing you ask couples when they approach you?
For every couple I meet, I want to know their story. One of the first questions I ask are along the lines of “How did you meet?” or “Tell me your engagement story”. I want to know about them. Getting to know them is just one of the ways I personalize their photos and their experience with me. Throughout the next several months, that’s exactly what I’ll be doing – finding out about what’s important to them. What’s their emotional trigger? What makes their relationship so unique and so theirs?
What’s the biggest mistake the couples make when choosing their photographer?
Only looking at the numbers. I think it’s important that a couple not only choose a photographer that fits their budget, but that they also connect with them. Shooting a wedding involves attention to detail, time management and an understanding of a couple’s needs. I think it’s important that a couple is able to communicate freely with their photographer.
What tips do you have for couples who have never been photographed before?
Before every photo session, I always layout what a couple can expect from the session. The unknown creates uncertainty and anxiety. I like to give them my general plan for the session, what to expect and tips to organically engage with me and with each other.I tell them to relax, breathe and simply be yourself. If they were alone on an empty trail, what would they be doing? Do that and I’ll tweak things along the way.
Maryrose Serac is a Lifestyle & Portrait Photographer based between the San Francisco Bay Area and Sacramento Valley. She provides photography services in Sacramento, Napa, Lake Tahoe, Sonoma, Vacaville, Fairfield, Benicia & worldwide. Her photography focuses on storytelling - finding the connection with her clients through relaxed, fun and engaging lifestyle sessions. She found her passion early on in life, enjoying countless hours in the darkroom before moving on to digital photography. Her photography has taken her around the world and has allowed her to witness incredible, moving moments with her clients. You can also find more of her personal work at A Mommentary Life, where she documents her life at home with her family.