[b]ecker's blog http://blog.thebecker.com/ the becker photography blog en-us wedding in asheville http://blog.thebecker.com/index.cfm/postID/1092/wedding-in-asheville http://blog.thebecker.com/index.cfm/postID/1092/wedding-in-asheville Sat, 21 Mar 2015 01:19:00 GMT Jessica Claire. The groom was a friend of hers from when she lived in NC. He was Super Cobra pilot who did several tours of duty in Iraq and Afghanistan. I've also met the groom several times over the years and I was happy to tag along. I loved playing poker with him for 2 reason... he had awesome stories from his military career... and he's not a very good poker player and I usually took his $$$ ;-)

Here are a few of my favorite relaxed portraits, amazing details and real moments:

St. Sophia wedding & Athenaeum reception http://blog.thebecker.com/index.cfm/postID/1118/St-Sophia-Wedding http://blog.thebecker.com/index.cfm/postID/1118/St-Sophia-Wedding Mon, 09 Feb 2015 08:01:00 GMT St. Sophia's Greek Orthodox Church in Downtown Los Angeles followed by a lovely reception at the The Athenaeum at Caltech in Pasadena.

Here are a few of my favorite relaxed portraits, amazing details and real moments:

I love the detail in her Monique Lhuillier gown:

The grooms father officiated a small ceremony in the side chapel before the main ceremony took place:

This is one of the most beautiful & photogenic cathedrals in Southern California. Thanks to my lovely & talented fiancee Ashley Douthit for this sweet image:

This belly dancer was amazing and entertained the guests during dinner:

Fight on... to victory! I love when the USC marching band makes an appearance at the reception!!!! Go Trojans!!!

Barcelona http://blog.thebecker.com/index.cfm/postID/1117/Barcelona http://blog.thebecker.com/index.cfm/postID/1117/Barcelona Sat, 24 Jan 2015 11:45:00 GMT

I think my favorite part of the trip was visiting the La Boqueria Market just visiting all of the little booths sampling all kinds of different local fresh foods. Ham is a big deal in Spain and we had plenty of it throughout the trip.

Speaking of hams:

The don't quite display the meat selections like this at Whole Foods:

This actually made Ashley cry a little and then she claimed she was going to become a vegetarian. Just a short while later we had meatballs, sausage, ham and patatas bravas for lunch:

We spent several hours checking out La Sagrada Familia one afternoon. They started construction on this church in the late 1880's and it's still not finished! They are hoping to have it finished in 2026, 100 years after the death of the architect, Antoni Gaudi.

Even though it wasn't finished, it was still absolutely breathtaking. And just like the Taj Mahal, photos do not do this place justice. It's truly incredible and a site to see. Don't mind the cranes:

The detail is just mind-blowing:

I love how the steel organ pipes caught the light of the stained glass windows:

Here's a view of most of the city from a gondola we took to a castle overlooking the city and the Mediterranean. You can see the La Sagrada Familia just to the right of the center of this frame, right on the horizon:

The next day, we spend some time at the W, which is my favorite hotel brand in the world. This particular hotel is something special:

It was hard getting Ashley our of this chair swing.

You can see more images from this trip on my Instagram page.

Manhattan Beach Engagement Photos http://blog.thebecker.com/index.cfm/postID/1116/Manhattan-Beach-Engagement-Photos http://blog.thebecker.com/index.cfm/postID/1116/Manhattan-Beach-Engagement-Photos Mon, 12 Jan 2015 23:19:00 GMT

Of course I made them stand in front of the Becker sign:

And they wanted a photo by the mural of the bar where they first met over 4 years ago.

The rain started picking up, so we stayed under the pier for a bit...

Then we all got brave and weathered the weather:

I might have caught a cold that day, but I think it was worth it.

Note to photographers: The last few shots in the rain were taken by placing a 600ex speed light + MagSphere on a stand behind the couple, and triggering it with my Yongnuo YN-E3-RT wireless trigger.

Review Preview http://blog.thebecker.com/index.cfm/postID/1115/Review-Preview http://blog.thebecker.com/index.cfm/postID/1115/Review-Preview Thu, 01 Jan 2015 09:00:00 GMT
First a look back.

After closing The [ b ] School after 7 years last January... I was really looking forward to the launch of PhotogRefers!

Unfortunately, that did go exactly as planned.

The initial response was great, but then we ran into some unforeseen issues, I split with my partner and then had a parting of ways with our main developers. Not good!

Then the site broke, and it's still not 100% operational.

Fear not... I am not giving up! I am not ready to call PhotogRefers a failure. I look at it like a hurdle and I am still trying to get over it. I'll be posting more info for our members in our FB group soon, but I still think PhotogRefers holds a lot of potential for helping photographers book more jobs.

On a more positive note, 2014 marked my 18th season as a wedding photographer and once again I was blessed with some incredible couples who trusted me to be a part of their days. Here are just a handful of my favorite images from the past year:

By the way, if you know anyone who got engaged over the holidays... please send them on over to thebecker.com!

Another great thing that happened last year... I attended the annual wedding photographers convention in Vegas as per usual. WPPI was fun as always, but the best part about that trip was reconnecting with the love of my life.

Shortly there after, we took a road trip from SoCal to STL as I moved to the midwest. We stopped at Bryce Canyon and absolutely loved it!

We also took a road trip down to Memphis:

Of course the annual trek to Burning Man was one of the highlights of my 2014:

You can see more images from Burning Man by clicking the photo below. Warning (NSFW)

We went to our fair share of Cardinals games:

We shot a wedding in Hawaii which turned out to be a life changing trip (more on that later).

We went to NYC for PhotoPlus (I made a very expensive purchase on that trip too).

I played lots of poker in St. Louis. I can walk to one casino, and there are 3 others within a 15 to 20 minute drive. I AM GOING TO MAKE IT BACK TO THE WSOP THIS YEAR!!!

This biggest event of my 2014 was locking this girl down! I liked it so I put a ring on it!

Seriously... I am so incredibly happy. I feel so lucky to have gotten another chance with this girl and I will not blow it this time. We have learned so much, grown so much and I do not have the words to describe how much I love this girl. She is a gift from God and I am one lucky guy.

And finally, I finished my first eBook just a few days ago. (Photographers... click the photo to check it out):

As far as what is on tap for 2015 goes... I just gotta say this could be the most memorable year of my life.

First up... health & fitness. Long story short, I lost 70 pounds a few years ago, but I never hit my final goals. In fact, I put some weight back on and slipped further from my goals. This year I am 100% committed to finishing what I started. This book is going to help me. Click the photo to see what I shared on FB about my plan.

Next up... I am going to have my 2nd eBook for photographers ready by January 15th (gotta set a deadline to put some pressure on myself). You can reserve your FREE copy by clicking the photo below:

Right after the book launches, we're am off to London for SWPP where I'll be giving 3 presentations:

Then we'll be taking a trek to Barcelona. Neither of us have ever been and we're very excited.

It looks like it's going to be another full year of weddings for some cool clients. We'll be shooting here in St. Louis, back in California, Jamaica, NYC, Illinois, Florida and hopefully many more destinations.

We're also looking forward to planning our own wedding which is tentatively scheduled for the spring of 2016. (And no, we don't know who our photographer is going to be yet).

Lastly, and of course most importantly... remember how I said Hawaii was a life changing trip? Well... long story short we are expecting a baby girl this June and couldn't be more excited!

Cheers to a fabulous 2015!

The Engelken's Christmas Portraits http://blog.thebecker.com/index.cfm/postID/1114/The-Engelkens-Christmas-Portraits http://blog.thebecker.com/index.cfm/postID/1114/The-Engelkens-Christmas-Portraits Sat, 20 Dec 2014 19:09:00 GMT
Addison is 6 and a half and Caden is 9 and a half and they really are good kids. I miss them so much and I am going to be sad not to see them for Christmas this year. Thankfully I'll be back right after New Years to have a belated celebration.

Hello ladies!

I can make these kids laugh like nobodies business. It usually involves fart noises.

After a long shoot they needed to blog off a little steam.

Addison is absolutely in love with her soon to be Aunt Ashley!

Wedding at the La Venta Inn http://blog.thebecker.com/index.cfm/postID/1113/Wedding-at-the-La-Venta-Inn http://blog.thebecker.com/index.cfm/postID/1113/Wedding-at-the-La-Venta-Inn Wed, 05 Nov 2014 21:20:00 GMT La Venta Inn in Palos Verdes Estates, which is one of my favorite wedding venues. The property is nestled in a gorgeous community overlooking the Pacific and provides an incredible view of the South Bay. The New York Food Company provided the catering and La Tulipe Floral Designs did the flowers.

Here are a few of my favorite relaxed portraits, amazing details and real moments:

NYC engagement session http://blog.thebecker.com/index.cfm/postID/1112/NYC-engagement-session http://blog.thebecker.com/index.cfm/postID/1112/NYC-engagement-session Mon, 03 Nov 2014 11:55:00 GMT 08-08-08 groom. The groom to be is a professional magician and we had a blast roaming around Central Park and Time Square. I'm really looking forward to coming back to NYC next summer for the wedding.

After the shoot, they treated Ashley & I to an incredible dinner at Quality Meats (Amazing!). Joshua also performed a few cards tricks after dessert and one of them still has my mind racing trying to figure out how he did it. Seriously... it pissed me off it was so good!

His new book, Big Magic for Little Hands is being released this month and is perfect for anyone with kids who are interested in magic. He signed a copy for Ashley's niece who loves it. So sweet!

Wedding at the Inn at Rancho Santa Fe http://blog.thebecker.com/index.cfm/postID/1111/Wedding-at-the-Inn-at-Rancho-Santa-Fe http://blog.thebecker.com/index.cfm/postID/1111/Wedding-at-the-Inn-at-Rancho-Santa-Fe Tue, 21 Oct 2014 11:33:00 GMT The Inn at Rancho Santa Fe in San Diego. It was a pleasure working with Karina Hale and her team from Couture Events. Adorations divan amazing job with the florals & decor and thanks to the girls at Natchurale for the wonderful job they did on everyone's hair and make up.

Here are a few of my favorite relaxed portraits, amazing details and real moments:

maui wedding http://blog.thebecker.com/index.cfm/postID/1110/maui-wedding http://blog.thebecker.com/index.cfm/postID/1110/maui-wedding Mon, 22 Sep 2014 17:36:00 GMT Ashley and I shot a gorgeous destination wedding at the Sugarman Estate on Maui.

It was a special one for me to shoot because the bride is actually a wedding planner who I've known for several years, Jennifer Renee. I was quite honored that she chose me out of all of the photographers that she knows and has worked with. She was a gorgeous bride and the groom cleaned up nicely as well! I love shooting these kinds of weddings. Small, intimate, and the people were just so much fun!

We had the privilege of working with Michelle and her team at Aloha Events & Catering. They were great... when it started raining, they were calm and brought plenty of plastic tarps to cover the table and benches. You could tell it wasn't their first rodeo!

Although it rained for a bit and the ceremony was delayed for an hour or so, it turned out to be a beautiful day and we were able to capture some of our relaxed portraits, amazing details and real moments. Here are a few of my favorites:

The bride had this gorgeous piece of art commissioned as a gift to the groom. It has a bunch of personal items and images built into it. It was done by Bethany Commemory Fine Art:

A quick peek at Instagram won't hurt anyone! #pirainowedding

5 in a row of the bride, then 1 of the groom (that seems about right!):

*Feel fee to share any of this images on Pinterest or Facebook, but please do not crop or alter the images in any way. Also, a photo credit linking back to http://blog.thebecker.com is very much appreciated.

Please leave a comment and share this link with anyone you know who might be looking for a wedding photographer. Thanks!