Palos Verdes is my home. Not by birth or even by longevity but from my first visit over six years ago I could feel the sea calling to my soul. This town is truly magical -- each cove holds new adventures, each cliffside with a unique face. It is peaceful in a way that could take you novels to describe. For the past year I've called it home.
Southern California is one of the world's most popular destination for weddings. There are beaches, deserts, mountains, lakes and everything in between. Just within Los Angeles county there is almost every landscape imaginable. With gorgeous locations comes many talented creatives. I decided to pull together just a handful of them to combine our visions and create a story that personifies just one part of Palos Verdes that I love. The rich history, the mysterious fog enveloped hill, the bold colors and lush greenery, the Italian-inspired architecture that inspires many a home in a sea of eclectic mansions. The ageless beauty that is Palos Verdes.
My dear friend and stunning model, Jessica, lent her talents to this session. I love working with Jessica because we always seem share the same brain wave. While the start and end of our shoots is always filled with sarcasm and laughter, we're silent artists in the midst of our sessions working purely off of energy. She embraced this character of a young siren with grace and ferocity. While bridal sessions are typically joyous and light, we incorporated my signature edge into this session.
Flowers came from the wonderful Brie Walter of Brie's Honeybees & Flowers in Redondo Beach. Brie fully understood the vibe of this session and arranged a gorgeous bouquet of loose, dusty roses and matched the bright, tropical greenery of the peninsula. Pops of deep cranberry and a dot of navy added a touch of class to the piece.
Vivan Tran from Vivian Tran Hair-Makeup Artistry created a loose up-do with a side fishtail braid that perfectly mixed both sophistication and bohemian elements. She matched this with dewey, bronze skin and a smokey neutral eye. Matte rose brown lips finished the look.
January from January Rose Bridal was on hand to add a touch of metal or a soft veil when the moment called for a bit extra. Her delicate handmade headpieces were the perfect addition to every look -- from a discreet, small gold branch at the base of the hair to a more elaborate crown-style piece, she had a unique creation for everything.
We worked with two gowns from Dreamers & Lovers from Torrance, CA that were absolutely stunning. The first was a thin strapped, body hugging dress called Amber that showed off Jessica's curves while remaining the element of class. We wanted to still portray a California setting where skin is adored and the body is everyone's temple. The second was the Alice gown and I chose it for many reasons: we wanted a more conservative option for our church setting, the train was long and loose and the low back was a our edgy surprise. This gown was everything. We effortlessly took it from youthful and fun to bohemian and cultural to high-class and formal. With just a bit of unique styling, there really wasn't an occasion where this dress could fail!
Last but certainly not least, our location. The Neighborhood Church has been a staple in the Palos Verdes history for almost a century. Originally built as a private estate by J. J. Haggarty in 1928, this seaside Mediterranean mansion has since slowly evolved into the areas oldest and most iconic church. They hold a wide array of weddings each year with one of the nation's most desirable coastlines as a backdrop. I'd like to give a special thank you to the church manager, Lauren, for helping to make this shoot happen. The church was the original inspiration for this shoot as it embodies everything that Palos Verdes is about: beauty, elegance and a bit of mystique.
Model: Jessica Draven
Flowers: Brie's Honeybees & Flowers | www.briewalter.com
Gown: Dreamers + Lovers | www.dreamersandlovers.com
HMUA: Vivian Tran Hair-Makeup Artistry | www.viviantranmakeup.com
Accessories: January Rose Bridal | www.januaryrosebridal.com
Venue: Neighborhood Church of Palos Verdes | www.neighborhoodchurchpve.org
Photographer: Jes Workman | www.jesworkman.com