I’m embarrassed by how long it’s taken me to blog this wonderful wedding! Let’s just pretend that I was saving it so I could turn it into an epic Throwback Thursday post. And while we’re at it, let’s also pretend I’ve been blogging several times a week for the past year. Oh, and can we please also pretend we’re all exactly where we want to be in life, and that all of our goals have been met and we can all just spend the rest of our life on vacation? Great! I’ll tell you two people who have at least checked on the major life goals of falling in love with their match and celebrating that fact with an epic and beautiful wedding day: April and Ryan, that’s who! Their Maravilla Gardens wedding was just a lovely day. I loved the look of it, I loved the feel of it, I loved the epic dance party it turned into, and I loved documenting all of it. Here’s some of my favorites from the day.

Photography: Heidi Ryder Photography // Venue: Maravilla Gardens // Florals: The English Garden // Catering: Command Performance // Bride’s Dress: Hayley Paige // Photo Booth: Open Air Photo Booth // Suits: Black by Vera Wang // Cake: SusieCakes

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  • megan - oh this is so beautiful!! I love the way you capture all the pretty at that venue! Oh, and um I’m definitely still blogging from 2015 (when I blog ;) so you’re not alone.

  • Charlie Walkrich - I love your work, Heidi. Congrats to April and Ryan! :)

There aren’t enough words to describe how lovely Aniss and Mo’s Hummingbird Nest Ranch wedding was. So I’m just going to say that it was a pleasure to document this day, and I’m so pleased to see it get featured over at Grey Likes Weddings this week. Every detail was perfectly styled by Hovik of Modern LA Weddings and the vendor team was just out of this world. Just lovely, lovely, lovely. Here’s some pretty photos as proof…

Vendor Love: Photographer – Heidi Ryder Photography // Vendors: Planning & Design – Hovik Harutyunyan of Modern LA Weddings // Venue – Hummingbird Nest Ranch // Rentals – A Rental Connection // Videographer – White Rose Production // Florist – Enchanted Garden // Wedding Dress – Lian Carlo // Groom’s Suit – Zegna // Music – Dashing Events // Wedding Cake – Dress My Cake // Mixologist – Mama’s Medicine // Officiant – Officiant Eric // Photo Booth – Mad Mochi

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When Randy contacted me asking me to document his proposal to his girlfriend, Jennifer, I jumped at the chance because not only did it mean I’d get to capture such a special moment in these people’s lives, but it also meant I’d get to spend the afternoon at the beach. As part of my job. If that ain’t a job perk, I don’t know what is. These two were in California on vacation, and Randy had even flown in their parents and some close friends to be there and watch the proposal from afar. Then they all went to a celebratory dinner. I think it’s safe to say this is a vacation they won’t soon forget.

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  • megan - oh my goodness. so cute with all of their friends and family running up to them! Proposals are the best!!

Taryn and Nick’s wedding was just dreamy from start to finish. These two are so sweet together and I wasn’t it could get any better than their engagement session, but it totally did! Taryn hired a dream team of vendors, and the results are stunning. I’m so happy to see their wedding get some love on one of my favorite wedding blogs, Ruffled, this week!

Photography: Heidi Ryder Photography // Event Coordination: Day Of Gal // Floral Design: FHO Events // Venue: Westlake Village Inn // Wedding Dress: Monique Lhuillier // Wedding Shoes: Badgley Mischka // Earrings: R. Zach Jewelry // Hair: Anthony Pazos // Makeup: Blushington // Bridesmaid Dresses: Jenny Yoo // Wedding Cake: Vanilla Bake Shop // Cotton Candy: Bon Puf // Ceremony Music: Angelica Strings // DJ: RedShoe LA // Rentals: 204 Events // Invitations and Custom Favors: Salutations Home // Calligraphy: POPPYJack // Photo Booth: Mobile Photo Booth // Videography: Atomic Tangerine Film Co.

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It’s been a few years since I’ve shot an engagement session at Disneyland, so it was fun to do it again with Kristin and Jeremy, who actually first met on what they now suspect was a sort-of set-up/blind date arranged by a mutual friend in Downtown Disney. Turns out their friend is a romantical genius and these two hit it off so well that they ended up spending the rest of the evening at the park together. And the rest, as they say, is history! Jeremy even proposed to Kristin there! So, yeah, Disneyland is pretty special to these two, which is why it was the perfect engagement session location for them.  I loved seeing the park through the eyes of this adorable couple who spend much of their free time together there. They showed me their typical hang out spots, and explained to me their carefully honed routine of ordering the proper amount of  beers BEFORE waiting in the long and boring Toy Story Midway Mania line, so that the experience is much more enjoyable. Smart!

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  • Urška Majer - That first photo is my fave! Love the whole session :)

I’m so excited to share Jeff and Tim’s wedding today, because it’s a good one, but I’m even more excited to announce that it’s featured on the front page of Style Me Pretty this morning! This couple, and this wedding, warmed my heart from the very start, and it was such an honor to be a part of it. I won’t say too many more words because I chose so many photos to share, but I am just so happy for these two and I’m so glad the world gets to experience all the love today, too. :) Check out the SMP post by clicking here.

Photography: Heidi Ryder Photography | Cinematography: Crescent Bay Films | Coordination: HoneyFitz Events | Floral Design: Seed Floral | Invitations: Song And Pen | DJ: Let’s Party LA | Venue: Tiato | Desserts: King Kone Truck | Getting Ready Venue: Culver City Hotel | Photo Booth: Fotosonthego | Rentals: Edi Party Rental

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Oh, this family is just the sweetest! I first met these three on the day of Melissa and Derek’s sweet courthouse wedding. Maddie was just a teensie thing back then, and now she’s a big sister! I already got to meet little bro and get him in front of my camera, and I’ll share that session soon, but today I just want to swoon over this light, this family and their love for each other. <3

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  • megan - ohhhhhh this is so gorgeous. And that blue dress is absolutely perfect in that setting. so so so pretty!!

What I loved most about documenting Shelby and Steve’s wedding, was that everyone was just so damn excited. There was such a palpable mix of joy, excitement and tenderness throughout the day, which was just lovely to document. Shelby and Steve are a beautiful couple who were lucky enough to get married at the amazing home of a family friend. Backyard weddings are the best, especially when the backyard looks like this one. Congratulations, Shelby and Steve! Thank you for letting me be a part of your day. <3

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  • megan - holy smokes, what a gorgeous backyard wedding! I mean, that space! wow! and what a sweet couple! they’re happiness is infectious!!

Personally and professionally speaking, 2015 has been one of the best years of my life. So many good things came out of this year, and I’ve never been happier doing what I do for a living! I am so grateful to all of the couples and families who trusted me to capture their cherished memories this year, in previous years, and in the years to come. This has been one of those “pinch me” years for me—wherein I have the kind of life that is more than I could have dreamed of. I’m honestly kind of sad to see this year come to an end, but I’m excited to see what 2016 has in store. I decided to share one image from each one of my wedding and portrait shoots from this year as a way to re-cap the fun I had. Many of these still need full blog posts, so that’s something to look forward to in the new year!

Happy New Year, everyone! I hope 2016 has lots of great things in store for you all.

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Cathy and Max are a fun and colorful couple and I’m so glad their engagement photos depict this about them. We had fun exploring downtown LA together and these two made me laugh the whole way through. They’re adorable together and I’m so glad I got to photograph their wedding recently, which I’ll share soon! Congratulations, Cathy and Max!

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  • Chrystal - Wow these pictures are incredible!

  • Charlie Films - Wonderful pictures especially the black and white!

My favorite thing about Eve and Eric’s Saddlerock Ranch wedding was how excited the two of them were to be marrying each other. These two are quite in love and they repeatedly got lost in moments together, as if no one else was around – when close to 100 of their closest family and friends were literally two feet away. It was just the sweetest. It’s just a bonus that the rest of the day was so beautiful! The other cool thing was that one of my past brides, Annika, was their coordinator! She joined the Orange Blossom team not long after they coordinated her wedding and this was our first time working together. It was such a fun full-circle moment!

Coordinator: Orange Blossom // Venue: Saddlerock Ranch // Officiant: Rev. Ogannes Agayan // Rentals: A Rental Connection // Videographer: ShaunPaul Creative // Florals: Humberto Hernandez // Ceremony Musicians: International Strings // DJ: RedShoeLA // Cake: La Fleur Pastry // Hair + Makeup: Meg O’Hare Beauty // Photobooth: Lucky Photobooth

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  • megan - love this one!! That shot of her walking down the stairs though just about stopped me in my tracks. Stunning!!

  • Charlie Films - Stunning pictures especially the last one!

Oh, this wedding. It was earlier this year, one of my first of the season, and I just remember floating on air all day long because the entire day was so wonderful. Every person was wonderful, every nook and cranny of the venue? Wonderful. The weather? Super wonderful. Trisha and Jason – more than wonderful. Their love was palpable and they made my job easy. This was a good wedding and I was super honored to have been a part of it. The best part it is, this wedding made me two new friends in this super awesome couple, and for that I couldn’t be more grateful.

I’m also happy to report that Ruffled Blog loved this one as I much as I do and they’ve featured it today! Hooray!Fig_House_Wedding_0001Fig_House_Wedding_0002Fig_House_Wedding_0003Fig_House_Wedding_0004Fig_House_Wedding_0005Fig_House_Wedding_0006Fig_House_Wedding_0007Fig_House_Wedding_0008Fig_House_Wedding_0009Fig_House_Wedding_0010Fig_House_Wedding_0011Fig_House_Wedding_0012Fig_House_Wedding_0013Fig_House_Wedding_0014Fig_House_Wedding_0015Fig_House_Wedding_0016Fig_House_Wedding_0017Fig_House_Wedding_0018Fig_House_Wedding_0019Fig_House_Wedding_0020Fig_House_Wedding_0021Fig_House_Wedding_0022Fig_House_Wedding_0023Fig_House_Wedding_0024Fig_House_Wedding_0025Fig_House_Wedding_0026Fig_House_Wedding_0027Fig_House_Wedding_0028Fig_House_Wedding_0029Fig_House_Wedding_0030Fig_House_Wedding_0031Fig_House_Wedding_0032Fig_House_Wedding_0033Fig_House_Wedding_0034Fig_House_Wedding_0035Fig_House_Wedding_0036Fig_House_Wedding_0037Fig_House_Wedding_0038Fig_House_Wedding_0039Fig_House_Wedding_0040Fig_House_Wedding_0041Fig_House_Wedding_0042Fig_House_Wedding_0043Fig_House_Wedding_0044Fig_House_Wedding_0045Fig_House_Wedding_0046Fig_House_Wedding_0047Fig_House_Wedding_0048Fig_House_Wedding_0049Fig_House_Wedding_0050Fig_House_Wedding_0051Fig_House_Wedding_0052Fig_House_Wedding_0053Fig_House_Wedding_0054Fig_House_Wedding_0055Fig_House_Wedding_0056Fig_House_Wedding_0057Fig_House_Wedding_0058Fig_House_Wedding_0059Fig_House_Wedding_0060Fig_House_Wedding_0061Fig_House_Wedding_0062Fig_House_Wedding_0063Fig_House_Wedding_0064Fig_House_Wedding_0065Fig_House_Wedding_0066Fig_House_Wedding_0067Fig_House_Wedding_0068Fig_House_Wedding_0069Fig_House_Wedding_0070Fig_House_Wedding_0071Fig_House_Wedding_0072Fig_House_Wedding_0073Fig_House_Wedding_0074Fig_House_Wedding_0075

  • megan - suuuuuuch a great wedding! That first look makes me so happy!!

  • Charlie - Wonderful pictures such a beautiful couple!

I don’t even know where to begin with this sweet family. I knew them when they were just two: Huoy and Walter, about to embark on a life journey together, but just newly engaged. I shot their engagement session around the Venice Canals (FIVE years ago!) right before they moved to and were married in Seattle. Now they’ve got the sweetest little girl and they are a family of three. Just blows my mind sometimes when I watch my clients’ start families!

Huoy has turned into quite the talented wedding photographer herself and it was an honor to photograph these three right back where it all started. Baby Elle is just the cutest and it was like winning the lottery every time she laughed or smiled at me. ;) Thank you, Chen family, for spending time with me and my camera once again! <3Venice_Canals_Family_Photos_0159Venice_Canals_Family_Photos_0160Venice_Canals_Family_Photos_0161Venice_Canals_Family_Photos_0162Venice_Canals_Family_Photos_0163Venice_Canals_Family_Photos_0164Venice_Canals_Family_Photos_0165Venice_Canals_Family_Photos_0166Venice_Canals_Family_Photos_0167Venice_Canals_Family_Photos_0168Venice_Canals_Family_Photos_0169Venice_Canals_Family_Photos_0170Venice_Canals_Family_Photos_0171Venice_Canals_Family_Photos_0172Venice_Canals_Family_Photos_0173Venice_Canals_Family_Photos_0174Venice_Canals_Family_Photos_0175Venice_Canals_Family_Photos_0176

This is probably one of my favorite engagement sessions of late because of how easy and simple it all was. Eric and Eve looked great (I mean – that dress!), the cloud cover provided gorgeous light for us to shoot in, the location was gorgeous and the couple was in love. That’s really all you need for a good shoot. Multiple outfit changes, multiple locations, props – none of that is important. This session was just genuine and fun and gorgeous. And soon I’ll share their wedding, which was equally as fun and genuine and gorgeous! Congratulations, Eve and Eric!Palos_Verdes_Engagement_0001Palos_Verdes_Engagement_0002Palos_Verdes_Engagement_0003Palos_Verdes_Engagement_0004Palos_Verdes_Engagement_0005Palos_Verdes_Engagement_0006Palos_Verdes_Engagement_0007Palos_Verdes_Engagement_0008Palos_Verdes_Engagement_0009Palos_Verdes_Engagement_0010Palos_Verdes_Engagement_0011Palos_Verdes_Engagement_0012Palos_Verdes_Engagement_0013Palos_Verdes_Engagement_0014Palos_Verdes_Engagement_0015Palos_Verdes_Engagement_0016Palos_Verdes_Engagement_0017Palos_Verdes_Engagement_0018Palos_Verdes_Engagement_0019

  • megan - oh i love this one!! her dress is so pretty and goes so well with the locations. I love the beach shots and the one of them standing on the rocks looking out at the ocean is my fav!!

  • Charlie - Lovely pictures such a beautiful couple!

When so much pretty happens in one session, I just wanna frolic through fields and do cartwheels. I managed to contain myself during this one, but it wasn’t easy. ;) Taryn and Nick are a lovely couple who were up for just about any idea I suggested, including taking off their shoes and walking through a slimy creek. And that’s when the magic happens, people! I’m so excited for their wedding day, where I’m sure there’s plenty more magic where this came from.

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  • Ala Cortez - so so so amazing! these are some of my favorites!!

  • Megan Welker - holy moly!! These are absolutely STUNNING! Some of my favorites from you! And that park is magic. All of those spots you found are amazing!

  • Charlie Films - Gorgeous pictures absolutely lovely!

I love taking portraits of families. It can be challenging because kids are involved, but I always find it rewarding, especially when I feel like I’ve captured the spirit and love of a family in the frames that I’ve made of them. I REALLY love when I get to photograph families at their home. These sessions tend to be more comfortable, more relaxed, and—most importantly—more genuine.

A couple of months ago I was hired by the Johnson family to take their family portraits in their home. I knew Brandon, the dad, because he is an amazing artist who happened to do the cover art for the graphic novel my husband wrote. I have admired Brandon’s work for a long time, so I was floored that he wanted me to take his family portraits. I hadn’t met his wife and kids, but I knew they were going to be awesome, and I was right. And their home? Incredible. Cozy, but minimalistic. Full of art and color and lines. I fell in love with it instantly. It was so fun to photograph in and it felt like the sixth member of the family. More family sessions like this, please!

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  • Ala Cortez - seriously, that home! these are so full of life!

  • megan - oh yes. I am SO into these. One of your best family sessions for sure!

  • Charlie Films - Gorgeous pictures absolutely adorable!

Oh, this wedding! Easily one of my favorites of the year and not just because every detail was so beautiful. It’s true that a wedding at Saddlerock Ranch is basically guaranteed to be gorgeous, but I’m a firm believer that the people are what make a wedding amazing. Megan and Brian are an amazing couple and their family and friends were equally as amazing. This day was full of fun and laughter, happy tears… and lots and lots of dancing. Just the way I like a wedding! ;)

Some of my favorite things from the day: Megan chose to go barefoot the entire day (“I grew up in Alabama, I was always barefoot as a kid,” she told me); the entire wedding party walked to the ceremony together as a huge group and then proceeded down the aisle one by one. Watching a huge group of people descend upon the ceremony was cinematic and inspiring and it made me tear up from behind my camera; Megan surprised Brian with a Carvel ice cream cart – his favorite treat from summers growing up in Jersey; Brian and Megan surprised everyone with a fun choreographed dance that got the party started in a perfect way.

This was a good one, kids, and I’m glad to have been a part of it. And, I’m excited to share that today it’s featured on Style Me Pretty, one of my favorite wedding blogs! Here are a few of my favorites, be sure to head over to SMP to see more.

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  • Megan Welker - CRAZY goooooorgeous!! Love those bridesmaids shots so much!!

  • Charlie - Amazing pictures I love it!

  • Cullen Griffin - Wow! These photos are amazing. Glad I stumbled upon this post. I really like the creativity and it’s something we should try to implement in our photo booths in the future! Thanks for sharing the information!