A Manhattan Beach Wedding: Stephenie + Aaron

This love story is about trust, surrender, and divine synchronicities in love.  Stephenie first met Aaron in the workplace at her New York City advertising agency.  Aaron, a South Bay California native, accepted an opportunity to work temporarily at the same office--for one short month to be exact.  The second Aaron entered into the office, his laid-back California vibe and style caught Stephenie's eye.  She learned quickly that Aaron had been renting an apartment not far from hers.  Without skipping a beat, Stephenie audaciously asked him to walk her home.  One walk turned into every day walks, then dates, then a lifetime of memorable romantics.  This love went so well, Aaron even extended his stay by a couple of weeks. 

Of course, reality set in and the two were separated--Aaron returned home to California, Stephenie remained in New York City.  Despite the 2,441+ miles between them, the two continued their relationship.  Their love, patience, and trust were tested but never broken.  Seven months later, Aaron surrendered all that he had, packed up his belongings and moved to New York to be with Stephenie.  And that's their story...a love grounded by trust, surrender, and divine synchronicities in love.

Stephenie + Aaron now reside in Hermosa Beach, California.  The two chose to marry amongst loving family and friends at their family church, American Martyr. 

Thank you Stephenie + Aaron, for welcoming me to document such a momentous and beautiful occasion.  To witness the love that the two of you share was refreshing + breathtaking--a true testimony to the kind of love we all dream +  fight for.  I can't wait to see what the future hold for people as amazing as the two of you. 

Second Shooter: Jesus Chuy Rodriguez
Wedding Venue: American Martyr Church in Manhattan Beach
Reception: Whiskey Reds in Marina Del Ray
Wedding Coordinator: Jessica Lynn
Florals: Stems by Kate
Make-up Artist: Erica Pennings
Hair Artist: Stefanie Duarte
DJ: Vox DJ's Diego Terry

Mrs. Brown's wedding dress fitted her so perfectly--in style + in grace.

Mrs. Brown's wedding dress fitted her so perfectly--in style + in grace.

Stephenie picked such a beautiful palette of soft pink blush and soft pastel blue. 

Stephenie picked such a beautiful palette of soft pink blush and soft pastel blue. 

Erica and Stefanie doing what they do best

Erica and Stefanie doing what they do best

Last touch-ups!

Last touch-ups!

Stephenie getting ready to put on her dress.  Also, love these bridal robes.

Stephenie getting ready to put on her dress.  Also, love these bridal robes.

Bubbles to celebrate the occasion AND to calm the nerves--let's be real, here.

Bubbles to celebrate the occasion AND to calm the nerves--let's be real, here.

Meanwhile, Aaron getting ready separately with his groomsmen + dad + these rad socks.

Meanwhile, Aaron getting ready separately with his groomsmen + dad + these rad socks.

I thought this photo of Aaron's dad was so funny!  One of the groomsmen made a concoction and the dad looks a tad bit skeptical!

I thought this photo of Aaron's dad was so funny!  One of the groomsmen made a concoction and the dad looks a tad bit skeptical!

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I love it when a wedding dress has so many buttons.  It slows down the moment so that I can capture plenty of photos!  More buttons; More moments!

I love it when a wedding dress has so many buttons.  It slows down the moment so that I can capture plenty of photos!  More buttons; More moments!

Voila! She finally made it in her dress and as expected--STUNNING.  JAW-DROPPING.  GORGEOUS.

Voila! She finally made it in her dress and as expected--STUNNING.  JAW-DROPPING.  GORGEOUS.

A better view of her amazing dress!

A better view of her amazing dress!

Black + White.

Black + White.

The bride's gals

The bride's gals

Aaron all spiffy-ed up!  Model alert!

Aaron all spiffy-ed up!  Model alert!

The boys.

The boys.

Not a bad-looking group of men.  AT ALL.

Not a bad-looking group of men.  AT ALL.

A lady bug for good luck

A lady bug for good luck

Taking a peek and prepping for the first-look.

Taking a peek and prepping for the first-look.

Aaron was pretty nervous and anxious to see his bride. 

Aaron was pretty nervous and anxious to see his bride. 

The first-look moment

The first-look moment

One of my favorite photos.  Veil photos always come out to be the best!

One of my favorite photos.  Veil photos always come out to be the best!

Time for the ceremony at American Martyr Church in Manhattan Beach

Time for the ceremony at American Martyr Church in Manhattan Beach

The look

The look

Aaron's dad surprised everyone during the ceremony with a beautifully written song for his son and daughter-in-law.  He was so unbelievably good!  And oh so sweeeeet!

Aaron's dad surprised everyone during the ceremony with a beautifully written song for his son and daughter-in-law.  He was so unbelievably good!  And oh so sweeeeet!

Tugged at all our heart strings, Mr. Brown!

Tugged at all our heart strings, Mr. Brown!

He managed to get through the entire song without getting emotional.  Until he sat down.  SO beautiful.

He managed to get through the entire song without getting emotional.  Until he sat down.  SO beautiful.

They did it!  They sealed the deal. <3

They did it!  They sealed the deal. <3

Everyone was ready for a celebration.  They took the party to Whiskey Reds in Marina Del Ray.  The sunset was perfection.

Everyone was ready for a celebration.  They took the party to Whiskey Reds in Marina Del Ray.  The sunset was perfection.

The market hanging lights are so beautiful to capture in photos.  And look how cute their sweet heart table was!

The market hanging lights are so beautiful to capture in photos.  And look how cute their sweet heart table was!

Not a bad view!

Not a bad view!

Their first dance

Their first dance

Son and mother + daughter and father.

Son and mother + daughter and father.

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I wanted to try something a little different for the dancing photos--I set an extremely slow shutter speed to capture the lights and create a more party vibe.

I wanted to try something a little different for the dancing photos--I set an extremely slow shutter speed to capture the lights and create a more party vibe.

This was an adorable moment.  Aaron got just a bit of cake on her nose and kissed it all off :)

This was an adorable moment.  Aaron got just a bit of cake on her nose and kissed it all off :)

And I leave you with this photo taken on Manhattan Beach immediately following the ceremony.  Beautiful you two <3

And I leave you with this photo taken on Manhattan Beach immediately following the ceremony.  Beautiful you two <3