Mexico Day Two: Wedding Day

Saturday morning I awoke to the melody of various birds, wind, and water. It was so peaceful and such a wonderful way to begin what was to be a wonderful day. It was only later that these calming noises would be eclipsed by the “UNO! DOS! TRES!…” of the water aerobics instructor barking orders to her elderly minions in the pool below me.

My morning was spent bouncing back and forth between the beach, the spa, and the boys rooms getting photos of everyone and everything in the midst of “getting ready” mode. The most educational part of my trip was spent in the spa with Katherine and Liz (her maid of honor) while our bride was having her hair done. The stylist did not speak any English, so we spent a good amount of time learning words like suave, desorganizado, torcedura, and cabello. Nearly two hours later- with the help of my iphone dictionary, the spa’s receptionist, and step-by-step photos Katherine had taken during the “dry-run” here in Seattle- her hair was done and looked amazing.

Hair done, I was off to Dale’s room to snap a few pics of the guys hanging out before the Big Dance. A few toasts, some ring pics, and one mandatory vodka-cran later I was off to Katherine’s room to capture the bride donning her gorgeous wedding gown. No doubt, she looked amazing. (Dale didn’t look too bad himself in his slick Tommy Bahama sport coat and slacks.)

The ceremony was elegant, short, and sweet. There were a few laughs when the officiant had Dale repeat “…for richer or poorer…” and then “… for richer or richer…” And because of the heat, neither of their rings slid right on each other’s fingers, but that was all part of the fun.

Cocktail hour and family photos were followed by a fabulous buffet of fish, fresh fruit, salad, rice, beef, and a super tasty spicy shrimp pate. After which came heartfelt toasts, cake cutting, and first dances. Even the DJ was great. Some seriously creative dancing (Matt & Derek I’m talking to you) followed as everyone else joined in the dance party, which lasted deep into the evening.

The night growing late, and the moist air consuming everything in its path, Katherine & Dale said their good-byes and retired to their suite. Others were off to continue the party at a local bar, but I was exhausted and knew I had lots of work to do. After two trips to the front desk to reactivate my room’s keycard and one long awkward walk back to my room with the maintenance guy to unlock my door, I finally settled in for some Advil, uploading, and some much needed sleep.

Adios mi amigos! Day three is coming up soon!


Last Friday I had the great opportunity to hop on a flight to Cabo San Lucas, Mexico for the wedding of Katherine Fountain and Dale Mackinnon. Let me first tell you that they are an amazing couple, suited for each other in every way and quite awe-inspiring in the way they care for each other.

I touched down in Los Cabos a little after 2pm and after plenty of baggage checks (don’t ever fly with a bunch of lenses if you want to breeze through security…) I made it to my shuttle and then to the resort, the Pueblo Bonito Rose, around 4:30pm.

My room was wonderful, with terra cotta tiled floors and a beautiful balcony over looking the huge pool located in the center of the U-shaped resort grounds. We all met up on the beach at 6pm for the rehearsal and then whisked off to La Fonda restaurant for dinner. The food was, of course, amazing.

After dinner we were off to The No Where Bar on the marina for cervesas, dancing, and crazy photo ops of our fabulous wedding party (I’ll save a little dignity to some by refraining from posting those…)

After the bar it was back to my room for downloading and editing before slipping soundly into peaceful AC-induced slumber. Stay tuned for Day Two (wedding day!!) coming up next.


I know that many of you are eagerly anticipating photos from Katherine & Dale’s wedding in Mexico. Well, they’re coming. First I want to share with you some photos from a senior portrait shoot I had this afternoon.

Since neither of us are into traditional studio pics, we decided to find a cool place outside for our shoot. So, 16 hours after touching back down on a rainy Seattle tarmac, I set out this afternoon to meet up with Molly, her friend Mikey, their pup Anakin, and a troll under a bridge. We were then fortunate enough to stumble upon a house for sale with some awesome graffiti before heading off to wait for the Interurban. As far as I’m concerned, that’s really all you need for a great Seattle shoot.

Congrats on your upcoming graduation Molly!!!


Yesterday you met Chorus, today I’d like to introduce you to the reason she’s such a goofy, fun, vibrant little girl- her parents, Katie & Brian. As I mentioned, my main purpose for our shoot Saturday was to capture some nice maternity photos of the family before their son is born. Katie even had local henna artist Jada-Moon write on all of their hands as well as her belly to document the occasion.

Since it was raining, I assumed all our shooting would have to take place indoors and expected the shoot to only last about a hour. Little did I know that the whole family (especially Chorus) would be more than happy to don umbrellas and brave the drizzle. The result? Some amazing images and nearly three hours of shooting while having way too much fun in the process.

Well, enough of my yapping. Meet the Gilstraps ~


Last Saturday I hopped in my car and headed out to Edgewood, Washington for a maternity shoot with Katie and her husband Brian. Those images are to come, but first I just couldn’t wait to share with you their three-year-old daughter (soon to be big sister), Chorus.

Katie & Brian are a wonderfully fun, happy couple and it should have been no surprise to me that their little girl possessed WAY too much sparkle and personality for just one kid. She was such a joy to photograph and I look forward to taking the first photos of their expected little boy. As I’ve said, there are more photos from our shoot to come, but for now, here’s Chorus…

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