Stani Photography: Blog en-us (C) Stani Photography (Stani Photography) Tue, 31 May 2022 21:26:00 GMT Tue, 31 May 2022 21:26:00 GMT Stani Photography: Blog 120 80 SEPTEMBER WEDDING AT MOUNTAIN HOUSE ESTATE , CLOVERDALE, CA [ ASHLEY + STEPHAN] 20190914_AC_080420190914_AC_0804

This time I am really really late with all my blog posts and social media posts. Even though I needed some break up from social media and online presence I owe an apology cause especially Ashley and Stephan’s wedding was one of my very favorite events of 2019 professionally and personally. I had the chance to first meet them in 2018 during our Big Sur engagement photo shoot and I knew this was going to be one very lovely emotional wedding. Getting to know them it was very easy to see that they were meant for each other. Best friends, partners in crime and love birds, respect for each other and patience! 


After lots of planning for more than a year their dream wedding took place at Mountain House Estate in Cloverdale , CA . The perfect venue for their fall rustic outdoor wedding.  A venue that accommodates both - bride and groom from getting ready to the last dance. And again, it is always a pleasure to work with Lacey from Stacy's Farm and Events at Mountain House Estate. 

When I arrived I went straight to the bridal suit where I was very warmly greeted by both Ashley and Stephan’s moms. The whole day was just perfect. We couldn't wish for better Californian weather in September for their wedding.  Ashley and Stephan took their first look photos. She was an absolutely stunning bride. And even they saw each other before the ceremony that didn’t stop Stephan from being emotional and excited when he saw ashley walking down the aisle and reading his vows to her. 

Thank you Ashley and Stephan for loving each other unconditionally. Thank you for your kindness , being so natural and your warmest  smiles throughout the whole day. And last, but not least thank you for making me feel part of your very special day and for your super special camera necklace gift to me.  Honestly, that’s the best thing I have ever gotten as a photographer.


20190914_AC_004020190914_AC_0040 ASHLEY COLLAGE 3ASHLEY COLLAGE 3 20190914_AC_006920190914_AC_0069 20190914_AC_008320190914_AC_0083


20190914_AC_008220190914_AC_0082 20190914_AC_010720190914_AC_0107 20190914_AC_010120190914_AC_0101 20190914_AC_011520190914_AC_0115


20190914_AC_013620190914_AC_0136 20190914_AC_014820190914_AC_0148 ASHLEY COLLAGE 8ASHLEY COLLAGE 8 20190914_AC_017620190914_AC_0176 ASHLEY COLLAGE 9ASHLEY COLLAGE 9 20190914_AC_019520190914_AC_0195 ASHLEY COLLAGE 7ASHLEY COLLAGE 7 ASHLEY COLLAGE 11ASHLEY COLLAGE 11 20190914_AC_023820190914_AC_0238 ASHLEY COLLAGE 12ASHLEY COLLAGE 12 20190914_AC_026120190914_AC_0261 20190914_AC_026220190914_AC_0262 ASHLEY COLLAGE 13ASHLEY COLLAGE 13 20190914_AC_027320190914_AC_0273 20190914_AC_027520190914_AC_0275 ASHLEY COLLAGE 14ASHLEY COLLAGE 14 20190914_AC_030720190914_AC_0307 20190914_AC_029620190914_AC_0296 ASHLEY COLLAGE 15ASHLEY COLLAGE 15 20190914_AC_031820190914_AC_0318 20190914_AC_038920190914_AC_0389 20190914_AC_041920190914_AC_0419 20190914_AC_041320190914_AC_0413 20190914_AC_035720190914_AC_0357 20190914_AC_043320190914_AC_0433 20190914_AC_044020190914_AC_0440 20190914_AC_044520190914_AC_0445 20190914_AC_044920190914_AC_0449 20190914_AC_044220190914_AC_0442 20190914_AC_046720190914_AC_0467 20190914_AC_047620190914_AC_0476 20190914_AC_048820190914_AC_0488

ASHLEY COLLAGE 18ASHLEY COLLAGE 18 20190914_AC_049220190914_AC_0492 20190914_AC_050420190914_AC_0504 20190914_AC_050620190914_AC_0506 20190914_AC_053220190914_AC_0532 20190914_AC_059020190914_AC_0590 20190914_AC_059720190914_AC_0597 20190914_AC_061320190914_AC_0613 20190914_AC_062820190914_AC_0628 20190914_AC_063520190914_AC_0635 20190914_AC_064520190914_AC_0645 20190914_AC_065320190914_AC_0653

20190914_AC_071520190914_AC_0715 20190914_AC_068920190914_AC_0689 20190914_AC_072720190914_AC_0727 20190914_AC_073120190914_AC_0731 20190914_AC_073220190914_AC_0732 20190914_AC_075620190914_AC_0756 20190914_AC_077220190914_AC_0772 20190914_AC_079720190914_AC_0797 20190914_AC_081520190914_AC_0815 20190914_AC_082020190914_AC_0820 20190914_AC_082720190914_AC_0827 20190914_AC_084520190914_AC_0845 20190914_AC_085120190914_AC_0851 20190914_AC_085520190914_AC_0855 20190914_AC_086220190914_AC_0862 20190914_AC_087120190914_AC_0871 20190914_AC_087320190914_AC_0873 20190914_AC_088120190914_AC_0881 20190914_AC_088920190914_AC_0889 20190914_AC_094420190914_AC_0944 20190914_AC_096120190914_AC_0961 20190914_AC_095620190914_AC_0956 20190914_AC_096320190914_AC_0963 20190914_AC_097720190914_AC_0977 20190914_AC_098720190914_AC_0987 20190914_AC_102820190914_AC_1028 ASHLEY COLLAGE 20ASHLEY COLLAGE 20 20190914_AC_102120190914_AC_1021 20190914_AC_104420190914_AC_1044 ASHLEY COLLAGE 21ASHLEY COLLAGE 21 20190914_AC_105720190914_AC_1057 20190914_AC_108320190914_AC_1083 20190914_AC_106020190914_AC_1060 20190914_AC_107720190914_AC_1077 20190914_AC_114120190914_AC_1141 20190914_AC_116020190914_AC_1160 20190914_AC_117620190914_AC_1176 20190914_AC_118320190914_AC_1183




Photographer: Stani Photography 

Venue: Mountain House Estate 

Wedding Planner: Lacey from Stacey GoodsFarm and Events

Make up: Rachel from Labella Soul Artistry

Florist: Pedy’s Petals Flowers and Event Design 

Bakery: Shannon from My Flour Girl

Caterer: Sol Food

DJ: NorCal Pro Sound

Videography: Paul Ortiz

Wedding Dress Designer: Stella York

Bridal Dress Shop: The Bridal Vault


]]> (Stani Photography) California photography photos wedding Wed, 05 Feb 2020 20:23:20 GMT


With more than 6,000 weddings taking place every day in the USA alone, there are a lot of people tying the knot. So much so that there is a good chance you are attending at least a wedding or two in 2020. Weddings are wonderful to attend, but can be stressful for some.

This stress often comes down to trying to nail down a great wedding gift. Unfortunately, deciding on a wedding gift for your friends or family who are getting married is hard. Not only will people worry about how much to spend for a wedding gift, but also what they should get. You want to get them something unique that they will love, but also something that they will use.

Without any further ado, let’s look at a couple thoughtful wedding gifts that newlyweds are sure to use and love.

Complete Bar Mixologist & Rocks Glass Gift Set


If the newlyweds like to host or enjoy a cocktail every now and then, this complete bar mixologist gift set is a great gift. It includes a mixer, a jigger, several spouts, some glasses, a notebook and a strainer. Essentially, it has all you need to start making nearly any drink, except for the alcohol!

The contents of this set are built well and should last for years if treated correctly and used safely. This set can even be personalized to include the names of the bride and groom. Not only in terms of the box, but most of the contents can also be customized.

Purchase at: browse Groomsmen Gift Source

Coffee Subscription Box

If the newlyweds love their coffee, a good and creative option for a gift is a coffee subscription box from Mistobox. This allows them to get great coffee from all over the world sent directly to their door every month. Mistobox can choose coffee based on preference, or you can let the newlyweds choose the exact kinds that they want.

The coffee is roasted fresh by artisan coffee roasters and then sent quickly right to the customer. If the newly married couple aren’t the biggest fans of coffee, you could potentially look at other subscription boxes to get them. There are some for food, for snacks, for alcohol, for books and for dozens of other things.

Purchase at:

The Newlywed Cookbook

This is a go-to for brides and grooms who love to cook, or who you feel should cook a little more. This book is full of great recipes to make together, but also recipes to make for one another. The books can help the newlyweds take the love they have for each other, and bring it to the food they eat and prepare.

The recipes in the book are plentiful and for a variety of occasions. Whether you want to make a simple snack, or a full meal for a date night, this cookbook will have something for you. The book also includes many helpful tips and cute little anecdotes that the newlyweds are sure to love.

Purchase at:

Honeyfund Gift Card

If you can’t think of anything that the couple needs or would really use, a great option is to get them a Honeyfund gift card. Honeyfund is a company aimed to helping newlyweds have the best honeymoon possible. A Honeyfund gift card allows the newlyweds to use the gift card towards a range of things to make their honeymoon the best it could be.

They can use it for travel, for activities, for accomodations, for spas, for shopping and various other things. The newlyweds are sure to use it and the Honeyfund platform is incredible. No matter where they want to go for their honeymoon or what they want to do, this gift card will help.

In conclusion, the gifts within this blog post are great options for the next wedding in your life. Newlyweds are sure to love them and actually use them, unlike many other wedding gifts they may receive.

Purchase at:


]]> (Stani Photography) Wed, 29 Jan 2020 03:51:33 GMT
NORTHERN CALIFORNIA OUTDOOR WEDDING AT MOUNTAIN HOUSE ESTATE [HAYLEY + JOE] _MGL0629_MGL0629 It’s the beginning of June. The rains have finally stopped in Northern California. A perfect day for an outdoor wedding. We are again at the beautiful Mountain House Estate for Joe and Hayley‘s wedding ! Minimalist and rustic wedding decor complementing the venue’s country outdoor charm surrounded by oak trees and hills.  

Guests flew from all over the country even from Hawaii to celebrate this true love between two wonderful and sweet people who found each other while attending The George  Washington University in DC.

The day was perfectly organized by Tara from Ybarra Events . Everyone's mood was on the happiest mode. When I entered the bridal suit Hayley greeted me with a big hug and smile and introduced me to her awesome mama, mom in law and her friends.  Everyone was relaxed doing their makeup and hair with Tami Maytum from Hey Gorgeous Salon in Pleasant Hill, CA. 

hayley blog  17hayley blog 17

The gorgeous floral design done by one of the sweetest florist I have had the chance to work with - Gina from Gina's Floral Enchantment

hayley blog  16hayley blog 16 IMGL6479IMGL6479 hayley blog  1hayley blog 1

The bridal dress was from BHLDN - Walnut Creek, BHLDN - Jenny Yoo for BHLDN

I started with photographing the details first and then I moved to the bridal and groom suit to capture the getting ready photos.

It was my first time I photographed at the brand new groom’s suit at Mountain House Estate. The mirrors helped me to achieve some very creative images where I could have more than 2 people in my frame at the two different rooms .  The whole suit is made with the purpose for the boys to entertain themselves as well as to have a room to change.

Hayley and Joe did a first touch photos. It was as exciting moment for them as for me as a witness. A few minutes of a private moment before the ceremony , exchanging letters and touching their hands without seeing each other.

The sacred ceremony was under the big oak tree. The delicious reception was on the loan catered by Edie Johnson from Preferred Sonoma Caterers .Hayley and Joe’s grand entrance was spectacular. The speeches were beautiful from true friends and loving family.  Everything was just so perfect.

Hayley and Joe’s smiles didn’t leave them for a moment the whole day. They made that day seem so simple and so extraordinary at the same time. They are truly made for each other ! One of the sweetest couples I have ever worked with. Thank you Hayley and Joe for trusting me to capture your BIg Big day , wishing you all the best in your happiest marriage ever!
hayley blog  5hayley blog 5 hayley blog  2hayley blog 2

hayley blog  3hayley blog 3

_MGL0175_MGL0175 hayley blog  6hayley blog 6 hayley blog  33hayley blog 33 _MGL0221_MGL0221 hayley blog  8hayley blog 8 hayley blog  34hayley blog 34 hayley blog  7hayley blog 7 _MGL0386_MGL0386 hayley blog  9hayley blog 9

Tarra from Ybarra Events fixing the maid of honor's dress. This what it means to work with professional event planner for the day! Always prepared !

hayley blog  10hayley blog 10

IMGL5737IMGL5737 _MGL0404_MGL0404 hayley blog  11hayley blog 11

My gorgeous bride Hayley ! 

_MGL0464_MGL0464 hayley blog  12hayley blog 12

_MGL0154_MGL0154 IMGL5443IMGL5443

_MGL0503_MGL0503 hayley blog  14hayley blog 14

First Touch and first time me photographing this wonderful wedding concept. I was as excited as Hayley and Joe ! It was such an intimate moment for them. 

_MGL0517_MGL0517 _MGL0527_MGL0527 _MGL0533_MGL0533


IMGL6471IMGL6471 hayley blog  13hayley blog 13

 The cake and the desert bar was all done by Bryan Harris from Moustache Baked Goods - a bakery shop in Healdsburg, CA

IMGL5838IMGL5838 hayley blog  21hayley blog 21 IMGL5860IMGL5860 IMGL5877IMGL5877 _MGL0837_MGL0837

hayley blog  30hayley blog 30
IMGL5886IMGL5886 IMGL5985IMGL5985 IMGL6140IMGL6140 IMGL6157IMGL6157 IMGL6187IMGL6187 hayley blog  24hayley blog 24 IMGL6412IMGL6412 hayley blog  25hayley blog 25

_MGL1200_MGL1200 IMGL6313IMGL6313 hayley blog  4hayley blog 4 hayley blog  26hayley blog 26


hayley blog  18hayley blog 18 IMGL6531IMGL6531

hayley blog  15hayley blog 15

hayley blog  20hayley blog 20 IMGL6581IMGL6581 hayley blog  19hayley blog 19
IMGL6600IMGL6600 IMGL6676IMGL6676 IMGL6690IMGL6690 IMGL6673IMGL6673 IMGL6705IMGL6705 IMGL6758IMGL6758 IMGL6808IMGL6808 IMGL6847IMGL6847 IMGL6889IMGL6889 IMGL6899IMGL6899 IMGL6911IMGL6911 IMGL6932IMGL6932 hayley blog  28hayley blog 28 IMGL6958IMGL6958 IMGL6992IMGL6992 IMGL7017IMGL7017 _MGL1698_MGL1698 _MGL1666_MGL1666 _MGL1687_MGL1687 _MGL1755_MGL1755 _MGL1776_MGL1776 _MGL1840_MGL1840 _MGL1857_MGL1857 _MGL1871_MGL1871

Runaway DJ & LightingI always like to say that an unforgettable wedding day can't exist without an awesome entertainment.  In that day of June 7 was provided by the incredible DJ Jon Moore from

_MGL1915_MGL1915 _MGL1928_MGL1928 _MGL1935_MGL1935 _MGL1948_MGL1948


]]> (Stani Photography) concord francisco photographer photography san sonoma wedding Tue, 25 Jun 2019 06:38:47 GMT
STAR WARS INSPIRED RUSTIC WEDDING AT MOUNTAIN HOUSE ESTATE [ KARA + JEREMY] And here we are at Kara and Jeremy’s wedding day - May 4th, 2019. The perfect day for Star Wars fans wedding as K+J are. It was the perfect spring day weather and the perfect venue for their rustic wedding. I was so lucky again to shoot at my favorite outdoor country venue  - Mountain House Estate.  I like it because I can cover both bride and groom getting ready - everything is in one location - ceremony, cocktail, and reception.  Also, the venue has different settings for photography, where I can play with any light at any time of the day.

The ceremony was under the big oak tree where we were able to take group photos after the official part.   The cocktail hour was in the lawn and the reception in the patio, followed by the dancing part inside the main house of the estate.  Everything was so emotional the whole day and evening.

The most impressive thing about Kara and Jeremy’s wedding planning was the DIY handmade objects that Jeremy made all by himself especially for the wedding.  Things such as the Groomsmen Boxes, the Wedding Hashtag Sign, the Corn Hole Boards, the Giant Jenga, the Seating Chart and the Card Box and the Chalkboard Signs on Dessert Table with collaboration with his sister and dad.  Everything was very creative and arranged in a Star Wars theme. Witnessing his fine detailed work that day and Kara’s calm attention to every detail during the planning process made me realize the dedication and affection to one another they have.

The rustic wedding decor was beautiful,  elegant and chic,  touched with subtle simplicity with the help of their wedding planner Lacey Davis from Stacey Goods Farm and Events who I had the pleasure to work with again at another epic wedding day.  The rustic elements of the wedding were also part of Kara’s hairstyle. The Star Wars theme was very subtle as well as it appeared in some keepsakes such as  Star Wars Toasting Flutes and Glass Cannons, man’s accessories such as Jeremy’s Star Wars Watch and Bow Tie, and Star Wars Socks, and some of the signs such as the Star Wars Welcome Sign and the Star Wars Seating Chart.

It was a very special day for two people who were meant to be together.  


Star Wars Welcome Sign - HayleesCloset (Etsy)

717A8971717A8971 BLOG WEDDING 2BLOG WEDDING 2 BLOG WEDDING 3BLOG WEDDING 3 The Bridesamaids dresses were 


Groomsmen Socks - Stance



Bridesmaid/Bridal Floral Robes - Timeless Accessory Inc (Etsy)


Bridesmaid/Bride Champagne Flutes - Accented Occasions (Etsy)


Bridesmaid Totes - DreamState (Etsy)


BLOG WEDDING 17BLOG WEDDING 17 BLOG WEDDING 14BLOG WEDDING 14 717A9131717A9131 _MGL8638_MGL8638 _MGL8409_MGL8409 _MGL8875_MGL8875 _MGL8881_MGL8881 717A9217717A9217 717A9225717A9225 717A9245717A9245 717A9241717A9241 717A9252717A9252 BLOG WEDDING 12BLOG WEDDING 12 _MGL8924_MGL8924
BLOG WEDDING 22BLOG WEDDING 22 _MGL8941_MGL8941 _MGL8958_MGL8958 _MGL8968_MGL8968 _MGL8976_MGL8976 _MGL8999_MGL8999 _MGL9013_MGL9013 _MGL9021_MGL9021 _MGL9041_MGL9041 717A9318717A9318 _MGL9038_MGL9038 717A9372717A9372 717A9458717A9458 717A9461717A9461 BLOG WEDDING 23BLOG WEDDING 23 717A9519717A9519 717A9570717A9570 BLOG WEDDING 25BLOG WEDDING 25 717A9582717A9582 BLOG WEDDING 24BLOG WEDDING 24 BLOG WEDDING 26BLOG WEDDING 26 _MGL9257_MGL9257

717A9625717A9625 717A9666717A9666 717A9695717A9695 _MGL9397_MGL9397 _MGL9413_MGL9413 _MGL9445_MGL9445


Wedding Cake Topper - MorganTheCreator (Etsy)

_MGL9493_MGL9493 BLOG WEDDING 34BLOG WEDDING 34 _MGL9504_MGL9504 _MGL9638_MGL9638 _MGL9668_MGL9668 _MGL9807_MGL9807 717A0133717A0133 717A0067717A0067 717A0082717A0082 BLOG WEDDING 36BLOG WEDDING 36 717A0110717A0110 717A0116717A0116 BLOG WEDDING 37BLOG WEDDING 37 BLOG WEDDING 38BLOG WEDDING 38 BLOG WEDDING 39BLOG WEDDING 39
717A0033717A0033 _MGL9843_MGL9843 BLOG WEDDING 40BLOG WEDDING 40 _MGL9986_MGL9986



venue:  MOUNTAIN HOUSE ESTATE  @mountainhouseestate

photographer: Stani from STANI PHOTOGRAPHY @staniphotography

Wedding Planner: Lacey from  STACEY GOODS FARM AND EVENTS @staceygoodsfarmandevents

Make up: Brittney Campos from ON FLEEK STUDIO  @onfleekstudiO

Hair: Krista Schafer from @elevated_beauty_norcal

Bakery: Shannon from MY FLOUR GIRL  @myflourgirl

Caterer: Don Garrett from WINE COUNTRY ARTISANS CATERING @wca_catering

Florist: Bekah from @flowersbyrebekah

DJ: Tony from NOR CAL  PRO SOUND @norcalprosounddjservice

Bridal Dress Store: GESINEE’S BRIDAL

Bridal Dress Designer : CASABLANCA BRIDAL

Ring Designer: SHANE CO.

Groom Suit Designer and Shop: MEN’S WEARHOUSE

Invitations: MINTED





]]> (Stani Photography) 4 bridal bride country couple dj dress elopement engagement groom hair make may napa photography planner planning portraits proposal rosa rustic santa star up venue vintage wars wedding Fri, 31 May 2019 04:59:08 GMT
WINTER WEDDING AT THE BRAZILIAN ROOM [HEATHER + CLAYTON] When I first met Heather and Clayton a month before the wedding to tour the venue and discuss some final details about their dream wedding day instantly I knew how much in love with each other they are and how lucky they are to find each other 11 years ago. A very romantic outdoor couple,  who decided to travel to Yosemite a year ago  for the weekend in one  cold , rainy winter day... They "sat at the cafe of the Ahwahnee Hotel , drinking tea and hot chocolate, waiting for the snow. Little did Heather know, Clayton was planning on proposing to her when it was snowing. Once the likelihood of snow increased, Heather and Clayton started venturing through the valley, back to their hotel. They stopped at a place along the river with a perfect view of Yosemite Falls on the right and Half Dome on the left. Clayton stood behind Heather, hugging her, spun her around, and got down on one knee asking if she would marry him. Of course, she said yes! "

A year of wedding planning after the proposal on January 19th, 2019  Heather and Clayton , a high school sweethearts tied the knot at The Brazilian Room in Tilden Park , Berkeley, CA. An indoor venue with an outdoor ceremony side and absolutely spectacular landscape surrounding it.  The day was more than perfect. Although , it rained almost the entire week, luckily at Heather and Clayton's wedding there wasn't even a drop of rain that day. 

Heather and Clayton's  wedding day was filled with love and laughter . The smiles of their faces didn’t leave them the whole day and evening. Even when I asked Heather to just relax for some portraits she couldn’t hide her happiness  and smile from her beautiful face.  When Clayton opened his gift from Heather, his hands were shaking , his heart was trembling, and when he saw Heather walking at the aisle his face was the happiest man's face I have seen, honestly... it was almost time to say I do. It was a very special winter wedding day surrounded by family and friends and I was more than thrilled to be a part of it. Thank you Heather and Clayton for your trust in me and my work to capture your very memorable day. Besides that I am very thankful to Trish McDermott from The Arlington for being the event coordinator and making everything to run so smoothly that evening. 

The wedding day started at The Lafayette Park Hotel and Spa and ended with a wild dance party at the Brazilian Room. 

H+C blog 1H+C blog 1

Ring Designer: Brilliant Earth


_MGL0700_MGL0700 H+C blog 3H+C blog 3

Make up and Hair by Adela Lopez from The Traveling Stylist 


_MGL0709_MGL0709 H+C blog 23H+C blog 23 _MGL0973_MGL0973 _MGL0951_MGL0951

H+C blog 22H+C blog 22

Beautiful Girls' robes by LeRoseGifts on Etsy


H+C blog 24H+C blog 24

_MGL0604_MGL0604 H+C blog 28H+C blog 28

Bridal Dress by Gesinee's Bridal and designed by Pronovias 

H+C blog 27H+C blog 27

H+C blog 21H+C blog 21 H+C blog 4H+C blog 4 H+C blog 20H+C blog 20 H+C blog 30H+C blog 30

_MGL1138_MGL1138 _MGL1146_MGL1146 _MGL1147_MGL1147 _MGL1169_MGL1169 _MGL1182_MGL1182 _MGL1188_MGL1188 H+C blog 29H+C blog 29 _MGL1201_MGL1201 H+C blog 6H+C blog 6

H+C blog 5H+C blog 5 H+C blog 8H+C blog 8 H+C blog 11H+C blog 11 H+C blog 12H+C blog 12 H+C blog 9H+C blog 9 H+C blog 16H+C blog 16

Florist Valarie Rome-Jessup from A Loves in Bloom

H+C blog 15H+C blog 15 _MGL1269_MGL1269 H+C blog 7H+C blog 7 _MGL1357_MGL1357 _MGL1358_MGL1358 _MGL1371_MGL1371


IMG_8652IMG_8652 _MGL1417_MGL1417 _MGL1426_MGL1426 _MGL1442_MGL1442 _MGL1455_MGL1455 IMG_8667IMG_8667 IMG_8675IMG_8675 IMG_8678IMG_8678 IMG_8681IMG_8681

IMG_8716IMG_8716 IMG_8730IMG_8730 IMG_8746IMG_8746 IMG_8752IMG_8752 IMG_8759IMG_8759 IMG_8780IMG_8780 H+C blog 17H+C blog 17 H+C blog 18H+C blog 18 _MGL1507_MGL1507 _MGL1525_MGL1525 _MGL1528_MGL1528 IMG_8798IMG_8798 _MGL1542_MGL1542 _MGL1543_MGL1543 _MGL1550_MGL1550 _MGL1558_MGL1558 _MGL1562_MGL1562 _MGL1907_MGL1907 _MGL1932_MGL1932 H+C blog 19H+C blog 19 IMG_9052IMG_9052 IMG_9066IMG_9066 IMG_9068IMG_9068 IMG_9059IMG_9059 IMG_8852IMG_8852

IMG_8884IMG_8884 IMG_8872IMG_8872 IMG_8811IMG_8811 IMG_9008IMG_9008 _MGL1616_MGL1616 _MGL2209_MGL2209 _MGL2196_MGL2196

Heather's friends admiring her wedding ring 

_MGL2329_MGL2329 H+C blog 10H+C blog 10

The very special gift from Clayton to Heather. A heart inside a walnut box made by Clayton for Heather. 

_MGL2458_MGL2458 _MGL2540_MGL2540 _MGL2545_MGL2545 _MGL2634_MGL2634 _MGL2685_MGL2685 _MGL2693_MGL2693 _MGL2765_MGL2765 _MGL2774_MGL2774 _MGL2856_MGL2856 _MGL2895_MGL2895 _MGL2963_MGL2963 _MGL2904_MGL2904 _MGL2915_MGL2915 _MGL2942_MGL2942 _MGL2966_MGL2966 _MGL2974_MGL2974 _MGL3012_MGL3012 _MGL3024_MGL3024 _MGL3033_MGL3033

]]> (Stani Photography) California family outdoor photography photos wedding Thu, 21 Feb 2019 20:38:50 GMT
ENGAGEMENT PHOTO SESSION AT BIG SUR [ASHLEY + STEPHAN] 20181028_AC_003920181028_AC_0039 This blog post it has been  waiting to be written and published from a long time ( two months to be exact) . Here, I am sitting in front of the computer and typing , inspired by the adventurous souls of Ashley and Stephan and the magical beauty of the west coast with its unique silent redwoods and windy dramatic beaches.  

When Ashley and I were trying to decide where to capture their engagement portraits with Stephan we had many options from a summer ranch house Ashley’s family is owning in the Bay Area to anywhere we can get for a one day trip. Doing an adventurous engagement session that involves a one day travel at least it had been on my travel work list for a while.  Finally, it was achieved- a day trip to the Big Sur .

And because Ashley , Stephan and I saw each other  in person for first time, (we have only seen each other once on facetime) first we met at the Big Sur Bakery and Restaurant . It’s right on highway 1 on the right side if you drive south. Great food and atmosphere complemented with an  outdoor sitting area! May be because it was Sunday at the end of October, but it was pretty quite around 2pm. 

The fun part of the whole trip and photo shoot was that none of us had ever been to exactly this area and location , so we had no idea where we were going to shoot . We had only drove by a time ago, bt never stop to explore it.

Of course we did some research in advance and we had few places in mind. First, we stopped by the Redwood Deck. Beautiful place...  if you want to get photos where the water is accessible to walk in that’s the place ,as I have always wanted to . So to me this whole photo shoot it  was a dream come true . The bonus part was that the river was surrounded by redwoods where brought the real story of teh redwoods in Big Sur.

After that we drove on a narrow  almost one way road to discover the gorgeous  windy hidden Pfeiffer Beach.

But for sure we couldn't go home without wrapping up at the Bixby Creek Bridge at twilight.

I can’t wait to see Ashley and Stephan as  a bride and groom in September because their love story is a special one , but for that later in their wedding blog post .

I am so thankful to Ashley and Stephan for their adventurous spirits to be able to make these breathtaking photos of them at one of the most exclusive locations in The USA. 




20181028_AC_004620181028_AC_0046 ASHLEY BLOG 1ASHLEY BLOG 1 ASHLEY BLOG 3ASHLEY BLOG 3 20181028_AC_004120181028_AC_0041


20181028_AC_005520181028_AC_0055 20181028_AC_005620181028_AC_0056 20181028_AC_005920181028_AC_0059 20181028_AC_006120181028_AC_0061 20181028_AC_006320181028_AC_0063 ASHLEY BLOG 6ASHLEY BLOG 6 20181028_AC_007220181028_AC_0072 20181028_AC_007620181028_AC_0076 20181028_AC_008320181028_AC_0083 20181028_AC_008520181028_AC_0085 20181028_AC_008820181028_AC_0088 20181028_AC_009420181028_AC_0094 20181028_AC_009720181028_AC_0097


ASHLEY BLOG 8ASHLEY BLOG 8 20181028_AC_010020181028_AC_0100 20181028_AC_010220181028_AC_0102 ASHLEY BLOG 7ASHLEY BLOG 7 20181028_AC_011620181028_AC_0116 20181028_AC_011820181028_AC_0118 20181028_AC_011720181028_AC_0117 20181028_AC_011920181028_AC_0119 20181028_AC_012120181028_AC_0121 20181028_AC_012220181028_AC_0122 20181028_AC_012420181028_AC_0124 ASHLEY BLOG 10ASHLEY BLOG 10 20181028_AC_012720181028_AC_0127 20181028_AC_013420181028_AC_0134 20181028_AC_014420181028_AC_0144 20181028_AC_016020181028_AC_0160 20181028_AC_016120181028_AC_0161 20181028_AC_016320181028_AC_0163 ASHLEY BLOG 9ASHLEY BLOG 9 20181028_AC_017020181028_AC_0170 20181028_AC_017220181028_AC_0172 20181028_AC_017820181028_AC_0178 20181028_AC_017920181028_AC_0179 20181028_AC_018420181028_AC_0184 20181028_AC_018820181028_AC_0188 ASHLEY BLOG 11ASHLEY BLOG 11 ASHLEY BLOG 13ASHLEY BLOG 13 ASHLEY BLOG 12ASHLEY BLOG 12 20181028_AC_020020181028_AC_0200 20181028_AC_021920181028_AC_0219 20181028_AC_022220181028_AC_0222 20181028_AC_022620181028_AC_0226 20181028_AC_023020181028_AC_0230 20181028_AC_023420181028_AC_0234 20181028_AC_023620181028_AC_0236 20181028_AC_024020181028_AC_0240 20181028_AC_024220181028_AC_0242 20181028_AC_024320181028_AC_0243 20181028_AC_024520181028_AC_0245 20181028_AC_025220181028_AC_0252

]]> (Stani Photography) adventour California family outdoor photography photos travel wedding Wed, 16 Jan 2019 23:55:38 GMT


Ceremony and Reception Venue: Piedmont Community Hall

Wedding Coordinator: Kianna Lamont

Florist: Flower Outlet and Gifts

Caterer: Thai Rice Spoon Catering

Cake: Oak and Fig Bakery

Officiant: Lama Kunga

Bridal Dress shop: Fantastic Finds

Make up and Hair: Jessica

Ring Designer: Santa Fe Designs

Invitations: Joy Wedding App



I have to be honest. Californian fall weddings are some of my very favorites. Warm colors, cooler days and evenings, and happy people in love, still dancing and dining outdoor under the open blue sky.  That was what Karen and Guy’s perfect October wedding felt like. I am very thankful that I was part of their wedding day and for their trust to capture it. It was a delightful experience for me. Their wedding took place at the beautiful outdoor wedding venue Piedmont Community Hall in Piedmont, CA among the redwood trees. Piedmont park IS where the venue is located has a very special place in their hearts. This is  the place where they play tennis since they know each other, the place where they walk their dog Nimmy and where some of the first sparkles of love stroke them. Although, their wedding had more than 100 guests it did feel like a very small intimate wedding event attended by very close friends and family of the happy couple.

Karen and Guy had a magical Buddhist ceremony by Lama under the big red trees. It was so much joy to see those two tying the knot after knowing each other for 13 years. Well, after eleven years of playing tennis and traveling the world together,  they finally realized that they were meant for each other. It’s like one of those movies, where you are best friends with a man, but then something happens and you realize that this is THE person. I call that a destiny and Karen and Guy are so lucky to share this very special relationship with one another.

It was really really beautiful wedding day. The speeches were very emotional , the bride and groom were absolutely stunning and present in the moment. The best part of our bride and groom portrait session was going to the tennis court and take some photos there . Having Nimmy, their dog in most of the photos was very unique experience for me as a photographer and  mother. I think though the whole time I was comparing it with my kids and how better behaving Nimmy was compared to them. Having her in the photos with Karen and Guy it brought even more passion and shared love to the story of their life and love. 



BLOG 33BLOG 33 20181006_KS_002720181006_KS_0027 BLOG 8BLOG 8 20181006_KS_003220181006_KS_0032 20181006_KS_006120181006_KS_0061 20181006_KS_006320181006_KS_0063 20181006_KS_006620181006_KS_0066 20181006_KS_007420181006_KS_0074 20181006_KS_007520181006_KS_0075



20181006_KS_012920181006_KS_0129 20181006_KS_013920181006_KS_0139 20181006_KS_015620181006_KS_0156 20181006_KS_015420181006_KS_0154 BLOG 28BLOG 28 BLOG 27BLOG 27 20181006_KS_017020181006_KS_0170 20181006_KS_017920181006_KS_0179 20181006_KS_020720181006_KS_0207

20181006_KS_025120181006_KS_0251 BLOG 26BLOG 26


20181006_KS_027120181006_KS_0271 20181006_KS_027620181006_KS_0276 20181006_KS_028820181006_KS_0288 20181006_KS_029220181006_KS_0292 20181006_KS_027720181006_KS_0277 20181006_KS_028020181006_KS_0280 20181006_KS_028320181006_KS_0283

BLOG 4BLOG 4 20181006_KS_028120181006_KS_0281


BLOG 23BLOG 23 BLOG 12BLOG 12 BLOG 15BLOG 15 20181006_KS_033520181006_KS_0335 20181006_KS_034020181006_KS_0340 20181006_KS_034620181006_KS_0346 BLOG 17BLOG 17 BLOG 20BLOG 20 BLOG 18BLOG 18

BLOG 14BLOG 14 20181006_KS_038520181006_KS_0385 BLOG 21BLOG 21 20181006_KS_039020181006_KS_0390 20181006_KS_039520181006_KS_0395 BLOG 11BLOG 11 20181006_KS_039820181006_KS_0398


20181006_KS_041920181006_KS_0419 20181006_KS_038420181006_KS_0384 20181006_KS_043020181006_KS_0430 20181006_KS_044420181006_KS_0444 20181006_KS_045620181006_KS_0456 20181006_KS_046120181006_KS_0461 20181006_KS_050420181006_KS_0504 20181006_KS_054420181006_KS_0544 20181006_KS_055320181006_KS_0553 20181006_KS_055820181006_KS_0558

20181006_KS_055920181006_KS_0559 20181006_KS_052720181006_KS_0527

]]> (Stani Photography) California outdoor photography photos wedding Fri, 26 Oct 2018 17:59:03 GMT



I can’t tell you how much fun I had photographing Kara and Jeremy in the redwoods of Moraga, CA.  I believe that making their engagement photos was a desteny between us. I happened to meet them at my first bridal show ever in April this year at The Ranch at Little Hills wedding venue in San Ramon, CA . A week after I met them again at Mountain House Estate where I was invited as the only photographer at their open house. A month after the event I got an email from Kara and Jeremy that they would like me to photograph their wedding.  And here we are in the middle of the redwood forest in the East Bay Area of San Francisco. It's 3pm in the afternoon , we walk under some of the tallest trees in California and the sun is hiding behind the leaves in mid September.

I love how much chemistry and devotion between Jeremy and Kara was going on during our photo shoot.  These beautiful soulmates  met exactly on March 10th , 2012 at Jeremy’s birthday party joined together with his roommate who was Kara’s friend from high school. When is meant to be it will be I love to say! 7 years later on March 25, 2018 Jeremy proposed to Kara after he was hiding the ring for couple of months and trying to come out with the perfect proposal when one lazy Sunday afternoon he pop the question. “She started crying and asked me several times if I was being serious, but ultimately she answered the correct way.” Oh Yeh! Horoay! 

As natural lover as I am  Kara and Jeremy insisted having their engagement portraits taken at the redwoods of Moraga. I knew this hidden place in Moraga from an elopement I shot  there in 2012. Honestly? I was very excited to go back there after all those years. It does feel a very special place. With special love energy. A perfect location for an intimate photo shoot away from the crowd and at the same time very easy accessible from the road.

We ended shooting around 4:30pm and it was already getting pretty dark there so I needed to use my camera with higher ISO. That’s why I always suggest when you want to have images done at the redwoods to start shooting earlier especially in the fall and winter seasons. The trees are so tall that barely any light comes through sometimes. Remember  you will most likely not even get a sky in the frame cause you just can't see it and it could be a little bit chilled. too.But also redwood forests are one of the most magical places to be inside. Regarding photography it will always be a win win location for anyone.

20180915_KS_001520180915_KS_0015 20180915_KS_001720180915_KS_0017


The first outfit was more casual elegant and we took the photos around the redtree grove. The second outfit I would say was my favorite because I am just a big fan of anything cowboy especially the boots. We took those photos near and on the little bridge area. Talking about bridge I would love to be there shooting in the spring when there is  a water in the creek.

20180915_KS_001220180915_KS_0012 20180915_KS_002220180915_KS_0022

20180915_KS_001920180915_KS_0019 20180915_KS_002520180915_KS_0025

20180915_KS_002820180915_KS_0028 20180915_KS_003220180915_KS_0032

20180915_KS_004920180915_KS_0049 20180915_KS_005120180915_KS_0051 20180915_KS_004720180915_KS_0047 20180915_KS_005620180915_KS_0056

20180915_KS_007520180915_KS_0075 20180915_KS_007720180915_KS_0077


20180915_KS_004120180915_KS_0041 20180915_KS_008220180915_KS_0082
20180915_KS_008720180915_KS_0087 20180915_KS_009120180915_KS_0091

20180915_KS_009620180915_KS_0096 20180915_KS_011020180915_KS_0110 20180915_KS_010820180915_KS_0108

20180915_KS_011720180915_KS_0117 20180915_KS_011320180915_KS_0113


20180915_KS_011820180915_KS_0118 20180915_KS_012120180915_KS_0121 20180915_KS_012020180915_KS_0120


20180915_KS_013920180915_KS_0139 20180915_KS_013520180915_KS_0135

20180915_KS_015420180915_KS_0154 20180915_KS_015620180915_KS_0156

20180915_KS_014320180915_KS_0143 20180915_KS_015220180915_KS_0152


]]> (Stani Photography) Wed, 10 Oct 2018 19:49:45 GMT
5 Latest Bridal Trends to Pay Attention To charisse-kenion-340543-unsplashcharisse-kenion-340543-unsplash Photo by Charisse Kenion on Unsplash

Text by Wendy Dessler

Outreach Manager

Wendy Dessler is a super-connector who helps businesses find their audience online through outreach, partnerships, and networking. She frequently writes about the latest advancements in digital marketing and focuses her efforts on developing customized blogger outreach plans depending on the industry and competition.


Now that summer's drawing to a close and fall's almost here, we are in the heart of some of the busiest months of the wedding season. This means more reason for Champaign and a toast to love but also a glimpse at some of the trendiest wedding dresses today.


If you’re in the midst (are on the cusp) of wedding planning and not sure which wedding dress to get, check some of these tips out!


1. Expect to See Some Innovative Wedding Designs

According to Transparency Market Research, millennials are drawn to innovative wedding dress styles and designs. But that’s not all. Expect to see more innovative dresses as more and more millennials are entering the “marriage years,” aka more walks down the aisle.


This is one factor why Transparency Market Research reports the wedding dress industry will only continue to boom, from a whopping (roughly) $32.45 million last year (2017) to $43.5 million once 2022 wraps up.


Back to Innovative Wedding Dress Designs…


What makes a wedding dress innovative? While Transparency Market Research didn’t hash out the details, however, Harper Bazaar mentions Danielle Frankel, spotlighted wedding dress designer, is pulling out all the accessories when it comes to current wedding dresses that are both chic and classic.


Frankel told Harper Bazaar that she wants the dress to be wearable after the wedding, not just during it. Our guess? Innovation means some off-the-shoulder, sleek evening dresses with some major wedding bling, from jackets to jewelry.     

sweet-ice-cream-photography-123164-unsplashsweet-ice-cream-photography-123164-unsplash Photo by Sweet Ice Cream Photography on Unsplash
2. Could Flower Headpieces Replace the Veil?

Whether on your Facebook or Instagram news feed, you may find a bride or two choosing a colorful yet simple flower headpiece over the traditional wedding veil.


For one, flower headpieces are never out of season. Fall brides can walk down the aisle wearing rust-colored leaves and orange blossoms. Sunflower headpieces are perfect for summer, while white- and blue-colored flowers would go great for winter and warmer-colored flowers for spring weddings.


Another reason the flower headpiece is top on the wedding accessory could be price. It may be easier — and less expensive — for brides to get their hands on a flower headpiece than that traditional white veil. Creative brides could even DIY their own headpiece, freeing up more room in their wedding budget for other wedding necessities like venue décor and catering.

Having some wiggle room in your wedding budget is huge, as the average wedding in the US is a little over $30K ($33,391, to be exact). However, if you live in New York City, this number actually is on the low end — think $76,944 tops. While Business Insider goes on to say weddings in say New Mexico is more like $17,584, minimum.


So, if we had to guess, price may factor in why flower headpieces are paving the way — not to mention, they’re minimal yet fairy-like and whimsical, perfect for a romantic-blissed-out day.


3. DIY Is All the Rage

DIY has taken the millennial generation by storm, and wedding dresses are no exception. As reported by the Huffington Post, DIY wedding dresses could be tye-dyed or even bright pink. In the land of DIY, there is no one right way to create, wedding dresses included.


As mentioned earlier, DIY wedding pieces can give some breathing room in an otherwise tight budget. Since three out of four millennials are struggling with some debt, DIY wedding dresses — not to mention, weddings in general — could increase.


4. A Classic Royal Train Is Never Out

If you were watching the royal wedding a few months ago, you probably noticed Meghan Markle’s beautiful cathedral train trailing down the aisle. So, flower headpiece or not, the cathedral train is always in.


Brides could follow in Markle’s footsteps and go with a long, cathedral train with minimal wedding accessories and wedding dress details. As The Knot, states, go for less when it comes to wedding accessories, as too much jewelry screams too busy or distracting.


5. Long Sleeves for a Wedding Dress? Why Not — Bringing Vintage Back


Laced — or even solid — sleeves are a go when it comes to bridal trends. (Of course, laced sleeves are more common, but never say never on solid sleeves.)


The laced sleeves make the dress look vintage yet classic and, dare we say, fresh. Pair laced sleeves with a laced neck for a beautiful Victorian wedding dress look.

charisse-kenion-229492-unsplashcharisse-kenion-229492-unsplash Photo by Charisse Kenion on Unsplash
Final Thoughts: Your Wedding, Your Dress


No matter what the bridal trend is, your wedding dress, like your wedding day, is yours and yours alone. In other words, you do you. If that means wearing a sparkling tiara or a more classic and traditional look, do it. If it means polka dots or a wedding suit, why not. Just as wedding traditions have become more relaxed, so have the wedding dress rules.


Have any more modern bridal trends to share? Do you agree with our list? Feel free to comment below.


]]> (Stani Photography) Thu, 06 Sep 2018 18:01:42 GMT
Mountain House Estate Wedding in Cloverdale, CA [Stephany + Erick] “He took me to a beach in San Francisco and he set his phone down to record , but I had no idea why until he got down on one knee and asked me to marry him!”

20180728_SG_007920180728_SG_0079 20180728_SG_029220180728_SG_0292

It was very hot summer day at the end of July, over 100F.  Impatiently to meet Erick and Stephany, a high school sweethearts  I was driving to Mountain House Estate in Cloverdale, CA to shoot their wedding. The horizon was filled with fog from the wildfires burning in Mendocino County. Thankfully, when I got there the sky was crystal blue and the day was more than perfect.

The whole wedding day was very well organized by the very professional Lacey from Stacey Good Farms and Events . The wedding inspiration was white tulips with white tablecloths, very simple and very elegant. It was a big wedding, but my day was short. However, I was able to capture  a little bit from the groom and bride getting ready, the entire wedding decoration, the family and friends portraits and we even had enough time to capture Erick and Stephany’s intimate photos in the picturesque garden of the Mountain House Estate. Moments filled with love, kisses, smiles and beautiful emotions.

I was so happy how everything was working out so perfectly that day that I even decided to stay a little after my work hours  to capture S+E's first dance. It was the best lighting and I knew I was going to regret if I didn't capture this beautiful couple during that time of the day. And on top of it I ended up capturing some very raw emotional moments like the one of the bride’s mom. 



Beautiful white cake done by John Die of Moustache Baked Goods in Healdsburg, CA and decorated with tulips by Lacey from Stacey Goods Farm and Events

STEPHANY BLOG 13STEPHANY BLOG 13 Make up and Hair by ONE Fleek Studio  Windsor, CA 20180728_SG_011720180728_SG_0117 STEPHANY BLOG 6STEPHANY BLOG 6 20180728_SG_007520180728_SG_0075

20180728_SG_008120180728_SG_0081 20180728_SG_008320180728_SG_0083

20180728_SG_003120180728_SG_0031 20180728_SG_000720180728_SG_0007 20180728_SG_001020180728_SG_0010 20180728_SG_001520180728_SG_0015 STEPHANY BLOG 2STEPHANY BLOG 2


STEPHANY BLOG 1STEPHANY BLOG 1 Jewelry Design by Kay's Jewelry  20180728_SG_007320180728_SG_0073

20180728_SG_016120180728_SG_0161 20180728_SG_016420180728_SG_0164

The boys looking at the far distant wild fire smoke 20180728_SG_016320180728_SG_0163 20180728_SG_019520180728_SG_0195 STEPHANY BLOG 5STEPHANY BLOG 5 20180728_SG_021920180728_SG_0219 Bridal Dress by Starlet Bridal and Groom's outfit by Mendocino Bridal and Tux

STEPHANY BLOG 9STEPHANY BLOG 9 STEPHANY BLOG 4STEPHANY BLOG 4 I thought the garden was the perfect place for S+E photo session. As both are from Mexican origin I found the perfect colors symbolizing their culture. 

20180728_SG_024320180728_SG_0243 STEPHANY BLOG 10STEPHANY BLOG 10 20180728_SG_023120180728_SG_0231 STEPHANY BLOG 11STEPHANY BLOG 11 STEPHANY BLOG 12STEPHANY BLOG 12 STEPHANY BLOG 14STEPHANY BLOG 14 STEPHANY BLOG 15STEPHANY BLOG 15 20180728_SG_010620180728_SG_0106 20180728_SG_033320180728_SG_0333 STEPHANY BLOG 16STEPHANY BLOG 16

Catering by Papa's Pizza Cafe

20180728_SG_038420180728_SG_0384 20180728_SG_039920180728_SG_0399 20180728_SG_040320180728_SG_0403 20180728_SG_043720180728_SG_0437 20180728_SG_046020180728_SG_0460 Thank you Stephany and Erick  for your perfect wedding day and trusting me to capture it.

 Venue: Mountain House Estate

Planner: Lacey from Stacey Goods Farm and Events

Photographer: Stani Photography

Sweets: Moustache Baked Goods

Makeup: One Fleek Studio

Jewelry: Kay's Jewelry

Food: Papa's Pizza Cafe

Rentals: Encore Events Rental

Bar: Bartending Prestige

DJ: Emilio 

]]> (Stani Photography) beautiful decor dress engagement hot love mountain photography ranch ring summer tuxido wedding Fri, 31 Aug 2018 19:13:35 GMT
CRYSTAL JADE JIANG NAN WEDDING IN SAN FRANCISCO [ALICE +FREDIE] what's your favorite memory when you first started dating? 

Alice: My surprise Valentine's Day.

Fredie: On our first date--"Children are like dogs."  "Yeah, but you can't call 'em bitches."

It was 2013 in Beijing  when Alice met a handsome Swedish guy at a Karaoke Bar. The first thing she thought  was ‘Who is that drunk hipster?’ and Fredie’s thoughts were ‘DAMN’ when he saw her. This is how their romantic relationship started.

Very beautiful and devoted relationship between three continents, one place they both call home  now and a romantic unexpected proposal on one early Friday evening. “One Friday after work, Alice was very tired coming home and was looking forward to the weekend. She walked through the door and their dog, Haley, came running to her with a box around her neck! It fell off and Alice picked it up and then came Freddie dressed up and down on one knee.”He proposed her.  


Five years later after Alice and Fredie first met and still madly in love living and working near Hong Kong , they came to San Francisco to tie the knot, the city where Alice was born and raised. Friends and relatives  from all over the world joined them for their intimate celebration at the Cantonese restaurant Crystal Jade Jiang Nan. The restaurant has a spectacular view of the Ferry Building. It was the perfect place for their wedding celebration. I love photographing those small weddings filled with honest emotions shared with close family and friends.

I had the big pleasure to be part of their wedding day on July 21st, one day before my 37th birthday. I was very excited to meet Alice and Freddie in person at their wedding. When they booked me in the beginning of January this year we only met during our skype video call once because of the long distance between each other as they live far far  in Hong Kong. Their wedding day was pretty much the only time I got to know them more in person. But honestly, it felt like we knew each other from a very long time. It was so much fun to photograph them, everything was clicking so naturally between my camera and them posing. I was told Fredie doesn't like being in front of the camera, but now I am not sure if I should believe that. They were both very patient and enjoying the moment together that day. Being around hem that day I felt I could keep photographing them without stopping, unfortunately we were going to run out of time and they wouldn’t be able to enjoy time with their guests.

20180721_AC_052020180721_AC_0520 Few weeks before their wedding Alice found out that the restaurant had permanently closed to the public in an online newspaper. Of course she freaked out in the beginning,  but fortunately was still open to booked events like theirs. Luckily, they were one of the last couples to had their wedding in that venue with million dollars view of the beautiful Ferry Building . I call this lucky couple. 





20180721_AC_002220180721_AC_0022 20180721_AC_003320180721_AC_0033


20180721_AC_003520180721_AC_0035 20180721_AC_003820180721_AC_0038


The cake and the cupcakes were from Kara’s Cupcake . The cake was decorated with the same flowers that were used for the centerpieces and the bouquet. I  found that very attractively beautiful approach and chic. All the fresh flowers were bought from San Francisco Flower Mart


20180721_AC_046020180721_AC_0460 20180721_AC_047520180721_AC_0475




ALICE BLOG 1ALICE BLOG 1 ALICE BLOG 2ALICE BLOG 2 ALICE BLOG 4ALICE BLOG 4 ALICE BLOG 12ALICE BLOG 12 20180721_AC_017020180721_AC_0170 20180721_AC_017520180721_AC_0175 20180721_AC_010020180721_AC_0100


One of the things that make me love what I do is the opportunities to capture wedding traditions of different cultures. This is Chinese Tea Ceremony, which reminds me of some similar Bulgarian wedding traditions. 


20180721_AC_015520180721_AC_0155 ALICE BLOG 11ALICE BLOG 11 20180721_AC_021520180721_AC_0215 20180721_AC_021820180721_AC_0218 ALICE BLOG 3ALICE BLOG 3 20180721_AC_032820180721_AC_0328 20180721_AC_034220180721_AC_0342 20180721_AC_045720180721_AC_0457 ALICE BLOG 10ALICE BLOG 10 20180721_AC_048120180721_AC_0481 20180721_AC_054320180721_AC_0543 20180721_AC_051220180721_AC_0512 ALICE BLOG 8ALICE BLOG 8 20180721_AC_057820180721_AC_0578 ALICE BLOG 9ALICE BLOG 9 20180721_AC_058120180721_AC_0581 ALICE BLOG 6ALICE BLOG 6 20180721_AC_058620180721_AC_0586 ALICE BLOG 5ALICE BLOG 5 ALICE BLOG 7ALICE BLOG 7 20180721_AC_061420180721_AC_0614 20180721_AC_062220180721_AC_0622



]]> (Stani Photography) Thu, 23 Aug 2018 16:45:01 GMT

Mr. + Mrs. Bencea

June 3rd, 2018

Jenna and I both knew each other from our photography classes at the School for Visual  Arts in NYC . We both went to pursue the beginning of our photography careers there. I remember Jenna as one of the happiest girls in school, always smiling and always very generous. Years after graduating we reconnected on instagram following each other’s art work. One day, I got an email from her telling me she got engaged and  loves my wedding photography as she has always loved it. She asked me if I can photograph her wedding day next year in CT. Honestly, I was very surprised and more than honored at the same time. I knew this will be a very special love to capture as I have been following Jenna’s romantic relationship with Dani through the years. For sure it was very different wedding than any other one I have worked on before. Photographing the wedding of the Senior Photo Editor  for Hearst Magazines: Cosmopolitan, Seventeen, Women's Health and Good Housekeeping was more than an honor for me, but I can’t hide that it was intimidating as well.  However, I knew Jenna trusted me entirely and I am very thankful to her for that. She knew my personality and my work ethic enough to decide to work with me.

Jenna and Dani found love in the middle of New York City during their college years. They had part time jobs at the 5th Avenue Flagship Abercrombie & Fitch as store models in the winter. Both were working on the first floor near the door. Jenna was always freezing in the skimpy outfits they dressed her. Handsome Dani, always being such gentleman gave his scarf for the whole week without saying a word. And on a snowy Sunday of December 4th, 2009 he asked Jenna on their first date. The same evening they went to Russian Tea Room, took a romantic stroll in Central Park and it couldn't be more perfect than that for their first date.

In 2017, eight years after they first met, Jenna and Dani went to Mexico on vacation. Sailing from Puerto Morelos around the Riviera Maya he got on one knee and asked her  to marry him. They went snorkeling and had a romantic 5 course dinner on the open seas. He didn't stop the surprises on the open waters. He had their room decorated in rose petals with champagne and chocolates waiting!

And talking about romance and ocean , one of the most favorite things for Jenna and Dani to do is walking on the beach and enjoying the sunset with its vibrant colors. No wonder their wedding day was set on the beach at the beautiful Anthony’s Ocean View  wedding venue in New Haven, CT. If you can’t travel to the Carribean beaches or to the Mexican resorts and you live near New York this is your venue. The pictures doesn’t do the justice here. Their wedding theme was entirely about anything ocean, beach, navy blue, gold and white. Every little detail of the wedding decoration mattered and it was very carefully chosen by Jenna. The wedding day was more than perfect love fairytale!


It was all about the sea that day even Jenna's bracelet. 

20180602_JA_000720180602_JA_0007 20180602_JA_002420180602_JA_0024



20180602_JA_001620180602_JA_0016 20180602_JA_001420180602_JA_0014 I was also honored to be invited to the rehearsal dinner and I knew Jenna has been talking a lot about how much she wanted a photo with the Lighthouse in New Haven with Dani. We knew we wouldn't have time the next day to drive to that beautiful and romantic place and decided to go and do a mini session before the dinner. It was amazing. After that I met both families and it was wonderful to get to know them before the wedding day. It helped a lot the next day to allow me to capture some very intimate and emotional moments.

20180602_JA_001720180602_JA_0017 20180602_JA_001820180602_JA_0018
20180602_JA_001920180602_JA_0019 20180602_JA_002820180602_JA_0028
20180602_JA_003320180602_JA_0033 20180602_JA_003220180602_JA_0032

Those very special family moments of the night before your wedding day worth every capture. 


20180602_JA_002220180602_JA_0022 20180602_JA_002020180602_JA_0020


The Airbnb  Beach House. It was the perfect place for J+D to get ready. Right next to the venue and all decorated in the ocean style with seashell driveway.

20180603_JA_000420180603_JA_0004 20180603_JA_000320180603_JA_0003


 Groom and groomsmen socks were all monogrammed by Sock Prints 20180603_JA_000620180603_JA_0006

Custom Mrs. Bencea hanger by Whiskey and Wedding Bells on Eatsy

20180603_JA_001020180603_JA_0010 20180603_JA_000920180603_JA_0009

Bridal shoes by Betsy Johnson        Wedding Rings: bride by Jewelry Design groom by AnL Jewelry 

20180603_JA_000820180603_JA_0008 Monogrammed wedding band for Dani just because he loves wolfs and moons and Jenna loves him to the moon and back.  Isn't that very original and practical. Working as a NYC cop Dani chose the titanium as metal for his ring by AnL Jewelry



Jenna's gifts to her besties: robes by Marley Lilly and custom jewelry by her mother's Etsy shop Charms of Faith 20180603_JA_002420180603_JA_0024

20180603_JA_001920180603_JA_0019 20180603_JA_001820180603_JA_0018

Cheers with monogrammed champagne flutes by Cambridge Avenue on Etsy

20180603_JA_002020180603_JA_0020 20180603_JA_002220180603_JA_0022


The moment when Dani's mom Valentina sees him  getting ready and his father fixing his bowtie. It was very emotional for both of them. 20180603_JA_003020180603_JA_0030

20180603_JA_003120180603_JA_0031 20180603_JA_003220180603_JA_0032


20180603_JA_003820180603_JA_0038 Dani's groom suit by Joseph Abboud  20180603_JA_004520180603_JA_0045

The breathtaking view of the ceremony side at Anthony's Ocean View. So romantic, so peaceful and sunny. 

20180603_JA_004020180603_JA_0040 20180603_JA_003920180603_JA_0039
20180603_JA_004220180603_JA_0042 20180603_JA_004420180603_JA_0044

Flowers by Danielle 

Caroibbean Vibe Steel Drum Band

20180603_JA_005320180603_JA_0053 Sand Dollars for guests' favorites and name tags.

20180603_JA_005020180603_JA_0050 20180603_JA_006420180603_JA_0064

Cake by Petonitos Bakery and heart cookie decorated with the bride and groom initials with the colors of sand and ocean by Jenna's mom Jackie.


All the candy bar was designed by the bride's mom and her aunt Stacy. The M&M candies had the bride and groom initials and their wedding date. 

20180603_JA_006320180603_JA_0063 20180603_JA_005120180603_JA_0051

The centerpiece had a white knot symbolizing Jenna and Dani's marriage. 

20180603_JA_006520180603_JA_0065 20180603_JA_006720180603_JA_0067

20180603_JA_005820180603_JA_0058 20180603_JA_006920180603_JA_0069

All signs designed by Jenna's best friend and maid of honor Sasha Preziosa, another friend and very talanted photographer I know from SVA . It was awesome reconnecting with both of them after all those years. 

She used printing and paper from White Fox Paper Co on Eatsy

20180603_JA_005520180603_JA_0055 20180603_JA_005920180603_JA_0059 20180603_JA_006020180603_JA_0060 20180603_JA_017720180603_JA_0177


20180603_JA_007120180603_JA_0071 20180603_JA_007220180603_JA_0072

20180603_JA_007920180603_JA_0079 20180603_JA_007320180603_JA_0073 20180603_JA_007520180603_JA_0075 one of the cutest moments at the wedding , the flower girl playing with the sand during the ceremony

20180603_JA_008020180603_JA_0080 20180603_JA_008120180603_JA_0081
20180603_JA_008420180603_JA_0084 20180603_JA_008520180603_JA_0085

Parents really got emotional during the vow exchanges . Valentina's only son and Eric and Jakie's only daughter  20180603_JA_008720180603_JA_0087 You can't call it beach wedding without the sand ceremony and here it is the white and navy blue sands mixing with one another. 

20180603_JA_008920180603_JA_0089 20180603_JA_008820180603_JA_0088

20180603_JA_009020180603_JA_0090 20180603_JA_007720180603_JA_0077 20180603_JA_009120180603_JA_0091

20180603_JA_009420180603_JA_0094 20180603_JA_009620180603_JA_0096 Who said the flower girl should throw flowers instead of sand ?  20180603_JA_009720180603_JA_0097 20180603_JA_009820180603_JA_0098 The bridal party   all dressed in navy blue 20180603_JA_010120180603_JA_0101   20180603_JA_010420180603_JA_0104

20180603_JA_010320180603_JA_0103 20180603_JA_001720180603_JA_0017


20180603_JA_011320180603_JA_0113 20180603_JA_015720180603_JA_0157
20180603_JA_011720180603_JA_0117 20180603_JA_010920180603_JA_0109

20180603_JA_011520180603_JA_0115 Jenna's bridal dress by  Keinfields She couldn't look more perfect and stunning than with that dress.  20180603_JA_012020180603_JA_0120 20180603_JA_012220180603_JA_0122 20180603_JA_012420180603_JA_0124 20180603_JA_012720180603_JA_0127 20180603_JA_012820180603_JA_0128 20180603_JA_013120180603_JA_0131 20180603_JA_013920180603_JA_0139 20180603_JA_014320180603_JA_0143

20180604_JA_014520180604_JA_0145 20180603_JA_015220180603_JA_0152

20180604_JA_014820180604_JA_0148 20180603_JA_015320180603_JA_0153 20180603_JA_015420180603_JA_0154 20180603_JA_015620180603_JA_0156 20180603_JA_015820180603_JA_0158 20180603_JA_015920180603_JA_0159 20180603_JA_016120180603_JA_0161

20180603_JA_016020180603_JA_0160 20180603_JA_016220180603_JA_0162

20180603_JA_016420180603_JA_0164 Instead of DJ there was a life band at the wedding. Timmy Maia was entertaining the guests all night with variety of music.  20180603_JA_016520180603_JA_0165 20180603_JA_016620180603_JA_0166 20180603_JA_016820180603_JA_0168 20180603_JA_017220180603_JA_0172 20180603_JA_017020180603_JA_0170 20180603_JA_017920180603_JA_0179 20180603_JA_018120180603_JA_0181

Honestly, I never shot sparkles at the end of the wedding . There is always a first time and I think it turned out amazing. Real people, real moments! What's a better way to call it off the wedding night than having sparkles!  20180603_JA_018220180603_JA_0182


]]> (Stani Photography) beach navy ocean photographer sea shells water wedding Tue, 24 Jul 2018 02:35:16 GMT





I met Amber in 2013 while shooting  their artist portraits for their website. We clicked right away. You know that feeling when you rarely meet really spiritual and happy souls and you want to stay in touch with them after that and follow their creative career.

Four years later I get an email from Monique referred by Amber to be their wedding photographer. Honestly, I was thrilled and I knew this would be a very unique  and emotional day even for me to be a part of it.

This is how they met. Both were attending the Esalen  Retreat Center in Big Sur, CA during the Holiday Season in 2014. Monique was taking a soul motion dance retreat and Amber was taking a tai chi/sound healing retreat. Sparkles bursted right away when they met on the dance floor during the Christmas Eve dance party. It was a magical night and couldn't be more romantic and memorable for them. The first question Amber asked Monique was ‘Don’t  I know you? Haven’t we met before?’. It wouldn't be possible as Monique lived in Hawaii where she was from and Amber in San Francisco at that time. They both shared their coming out stories and dating history in the first hour they met, which they had so much in common. But, it was the first 5 minutes conversation though between two of them that they knew were meant for each other. Their love for sure has a special relationship to hot springs . On April 13, 2017 they drove to Myvatn Nature Baths in Iceland, the most beautiful hot spring they have ever visited . They were pretty much alone in a huge pool and it spontaneously came to Amber to pop the question to Monique. They  tied the knot on May 26th, 2018 in the beautiful rose garden of UC Berkeley Botanical Garden, CA.

Their ceremony was so beautiful and spiritual. The concept was to walk in the circle  and make an eye connection with everyone who came to their wedding day and acknowledge their presence. I thought this was absolutely beautiful and so personal. It made me think that every wedding ceremony should have this moment in it, a moment of presence and connection with the people who we love and appreciate.  “The rose garden was in full bloom, and roses symbolize love. You could smell their heavenly fragrance. The rose garden is also up on a hill, with a view of the Bay and Golden Gate Bridge. We liked the expansive view. It was Monique's dream to move to the Bay Area--being in the rose garden with the view on the hill felt like being in the heavenly realm of sacred space with wafts of roses. “

20180526_MM_000720180526_MM_0007 20180526_MM_001020180526_MM_0010 20180526_MM_006720180526_MM_0067

a personal moment

20180526_MM_007320180526_MM_0073 20180526_MM_007520180526_MM_0075

blog 2blog 2

The gorgeous bridal bouquet and the bouttenniere were by Vanessa from Bell and Trunk Flowers   Amber's suit was custom made by Thùy Custom Clothier



Monique was proud to wear on her wedding day her grandma pearls. 

20180526_MM_012320180526_MM_0123 20180526_MM_014620180526_MM_0146 20180526_MM_018220180526_MM_0182

connecting with each other though touching each other heart


Monique makes eye contact with Amber's mom. Very emotional moment for both of them. 

20180526_MM_010720180526_MM_0107 blog 2blog 2

Walking in through the little gate at the rose garden. Monique walks with her two sons. 


Gorgeous view from rose garden at UC Botanical Garden garden . Golden gate bridge in the far distance. 

blog 4blog 4

connectig with the closest family members 


 I thought their wedding rings with natural gemstones like turquoise were so meaningful and beautiful made by Thomas Carusetta

blogblog 20180526_MM_030320180526_MM_0303

As Monique is Japanese American, the Japanese garden was a very special and significant place for her. 

20180526_MM_030920180526_MM_0309 20180526_MM_032020180526_MM_0320 20180526_MM_032720180526_MM_0327 20180526_MM_033220180526_MM_0332 blog 3blog 3

Bridal Dress by Nicole Miller and  silver/grey suit with eggplant piping, white shirt and iridescent blue/pink/silver vest by Thùy Custom Clothier


cakes made by M+A friend table flowers by Good Eggs

20180526_MM_039420180526_MM_0394 20180526_MM_038820180526_MM_0388 20180526_MM_034920180526_MM_0349 20180526_MM_036020180526_MM_0360 20180526_MM_038220180526_MM_0382 20180526_MM_039920180526_MM_0399

blog 10blog 10

Catering and Wedding Coordinator by  Simon from S&S Gastro Grub Catering

blog 4blog 4

Wildflowers on the tables by Good Eggs and guest favorites by Upcountry Maui Jams and Jellies



20180526_MM_043220180526_MM_0432 20180526_MM_044120180526_MM_0441 20180526_MM_050320180526_MM_0503

free your voice 



the speeches were even more heartbreaking especially when little kids want to be a part of them


blog 2blog 2 20180526_MM_054420180526_MM_0544 20180526_MM_060220180526_MM_0602

The two moms are connecting. I believe this is a very memorable photo for the family album. 


Congratulations Amber and Monique and Thank You for believing in my work. It was more than an honor to be a part of your wedding day. 

]]> (Stani Photography) gay lesbian lgbt loveislove lovewins queer wedding Mon, 25 Jun 2018 01:35:05 GMT

When I first received an email request from Kimberly about their wedding at Bull Valley Roadhouse in Port Costa, CA  I knew this was going to be a very special and unique day. Fifteen years ago at a job training on February 1st 2003 , Kimberly and Kevin met each other and soon after that they started dating. Nine years ago, on March 20, 2009  while Kevin had been carrying the ring around in his shirt pocket he kneeled and proposed to Kimberly at Union Square in San Francisco where they have spent a lot of time together during the years they dated and with a giant smile from ear to ear she said yes.  

It is special relationship, one that not many of us have the chance to experience it, one that requires a lot of patience and care for each other. In the early years of their relationship, Kimberly would help Kevin over the weekends with some college classes. Kevin would pick her up on a sunny Saturday afternoon and go on a long drives sometimes to san Francisco other times to places that have never been before , just to talk and be together. They have been motivating each other at work and life, both having a wit sense of humor made each other laugh and enjoying life together while creating memories for a lifetime.  Kimberly and Kevin have been sharing more and more similar values while growing up in their relationship through the fifteen years of being together. Values and actions of devotion, patience and care made them realized their destiny together to share lifelong commitment and love. And on February 1st, 2018 in a beautiful sunny late afternoon they promised each other to comfort and protect each other and to love. Forever.

Their ceremony and reception took place at Bull Valley Roadhouse, settled in the historic downtown of Port Costa, CA. If you live in the Bay Area and never heard about Port Costa you know you are not the only one. But if you have a chance to go there you must visit it.

Since, Kimberly and Kevin decided to have a first look photos , we decided to do those at a location closed to Port Costa. Kevin was super nice to check Briones Regional Park in the Martinez side and he wrote me that the place was absolutely beautiful. Knowing from our conversation  that they like nature and they live in the area I thought that this will be the perfect place for their portrait session. I scouted the location before they showed up and found a magical forest with shade and sparkling sunlight coming out of the far distance behind the trees. We did have to walk about ten minutes to the location, but it was all worth it. It was a very special place I thought , so intimate and so spiritual.

Kimberly and Kevin, words can't describe how honored I was to be a part of that very special day for you and your families: THANK YOU , thank you for believing in me and  making me feel like the luckiest photographer to document the story of your love and happiness. Much Love and appreciation....Stani ! 

San Francisco wedding photographerSan Francisco wedding photographer Napa wedding photographerNapa wedding photographer


menu with the  bride and groom names on top and the date of their wedding day

pleasant hill wedding photograherpleasant hill wedding photograher martines wedding photographermartines wedding photographer

First look photos at Briones Regional Park in Martinez , CA . Emotional and excited Kimberly walked behind Kevin. Kevin, thrilled to see his bride and wife to be. 

Bay Area wedding photographerBay Area wedding photographer Walnut Creek photographerWalnut Creek photographer

magic of love and happiness in the middle of the woods 

Walnut Creek photographerWalnut Creek photographer

briones park portraitbriones park portrait Bride and groom portraitBride and groom portrait

bull valley roadhouse weddingbull valley roadhouse wedding Forest weddingForest wedding Briones regional park MartinezBriones regional park Martinez

Bride portraitBride portrait Wedding bouquetWedding bouquet

Kimberly was wearing a gorgeous  art deco kind of dress by Adrianna Papell with her hair down. Holding a beaitiful white wedding bouquet made by Anne Mendenhall 

Fine art wedding photographerFine art wedding photographer Martinez wedding photographerMartinez wedding photographer 20180201_KN_013820180201_KN_0138 20180201_KN_015320180201_KN_0153

Formal Portraits were done before the ceremony so we have some more time for the bride and groom extra photos after, plus teh timeline didn't allow much time for formal portraits after the ceremony.  

bull valley roadhouse weddingbull valley roadhouse wedding

Bull Valley Roadhouse has a permanent  knot where the wedding ceremony takes place. 

20180201_KN_016320180201_KN_0163 20180201_KN_016820180201_KN_0168

20180201_KN_016620180201_KN_0166 bull valley roadhouse weddingbull valley roadhouse wedding

A long table set for 24 guests . menu was printed at the restaurant with family shared plates and decorated with a flower on top of the plate. Simple and Elegant.


20180201_KN_017320180201_KN_0173 20180201_KN_015920180201_KN_0159

Cake was made by Alpine Pastry and Cakes and decorated by the florist Anne Mendenhall . White , navy blue and organic natural elements were the wedding decoration and accents. 

20180201_KN_016120180201_KN_0161 bull valley roadhouse weddingbull valley roadhouse wedding

bull valley roadhouse weddingbull valley roadhouse wedding bull valley roadhouse weddingbull valley roadhouse wedding

bull valley roadhouse weddingbull valley roadhouse wedding

20180201_KN_022220180201_KN_0222 20180201_KN_023020180201_KN_0230 20180201_KN_023120180201_KN_0231 20180201_KN_024120180201_KN_0241

Twenty four of the closets family and friends gathered to celebrate Kevin and Kimberly's love and marriage. 

20180201_KN_025520180201_KN_0255 20180201_KN_026720180201_KN_0267 20180201_KN_027020180201_KN_0270 20180201_KN_028120180201_KN_0281 bull valley roadhouse weddingbull valley roadhouse wedding

bull valley roadhouse weddingbull valley roadhouse wedding bull_valley_roadhouse_wedding_port_costabull_valley_roadhouse_wedding_port_costa















Many thanks to all the amazing vendors who made that celebration possible :


Venue: Bull Valley Roadhouse - Tuala Garcia-Zuazua


Florist: Anne Mendenhall Flowers


Cake: Alpine Pastry and Cakes


Officiant: Scott Gillespie


Bridal Dress: Adrianna Papeell


Shoes: Michael Kors

]]> (Stani Photography) area art bay deco florist francisco marriage planner san simple wedding Wed, 21 Feb 2018 00:08:41 GMT

[the best time of the day for a family portrait session]

I can’t tell you how thrilled I was when Jen contacted me on facebook to photograph her family of four this fall. In 2013 , being pregnant myself I photographed Jen and Kevin’s wedding day. Since then, they have stayed in my heart as one of the sweetest couples I had the chance to work with. Now, I had the pleasure to really get to know them as great parents too to some of the most adorable kids I have known.


When we were discussing locations in the Walnut Creek area , the historic Old Borges Ranch came to my mind first. I know kids love farm animals and especially when they can pet them. The ranch is absolutely picturesque and is a great place to create a day with my family story like. From the rustic wooden walls, the cactus next door, the old vintage tractors  to the goats and chickens that are pasturing around the ranch. The place is a beautiful set that has everything that a family can enjoy for couple of hours. It has bathrooms too, parking lot and beautiful hiking trails to Diablo Foothills Regional Park.

Getting there is easy , just be careful that is kind of a one way mountain road, so drive slowly.

I have done session at the Old Borges Ranch before and they all turned out beautiful . The best time is in the afternoon. I prefer shooting there before the rains start in November. September and October are the ideal time if you want to get to images ready for the Holidays. After November , it might be muddy there if it has rained the day before or so. And don’t forget that the time changes with an hour back in the beginning of November. Plus, as closer we get to the holidays the place can get very crowded with other photographers shooting family portraits there last minute( once there was four other photographers there and we have to respect each others time and space of shooting too). Yes, apparently the place is pretty famous among the lifestyle photo community in the Contra Costa County. But who can you blame for it when it has everything to create beautiful portraits with pretty background. Once, we even spotted deers .

Best time to shoot: after 4pm before November and from 3pm-5pm after the Daylight Saving Time ends.

As always my goal is the family I photograph to have a great time as a whole and at the same time these authentic moments to be recorder inside the rectangular frame.

Old Borges Ranch  

1035 Castle Rock Rd, Walnut Creek, CA 94598

20171007_JS_001020171007_JS_0010 20171007_JS_001620171007_JS_0016

20171007_JS_001320171007_JS_0013 20171007_JS_002520171007_JS_0025 20171007_JS_003220171007_JS_0032 20171007_JS_003620171007_JS_0036 20171007_JS_003720171007_JS_0037 20171007_JS_004920171007_JS_0049

20171007_JS_005420171007_JS_0054 20171007_JS_006420171007_JS_0064

20171007_JS_005620171007_JS_0056 20171007_JS_005720171007_JS_0057 20171007_JS_006020171007_JS_0060 20171007_JS_007120171007_JS_0071 20171007_JS_007520171007_JS_0075 20171007_JS_008520171007_JS_0085 20171007_JS_009320171007_JS_0093 20171007_JS_009820171007_JS_0098 20171007_JS_010020171007_JS_0100

20171007_JS_010920171007_JS_0109 20171007_JS_010720171007_JS_0107 20171007_JS_011420171007_JS_0114 20171007_JS_011920171007_JS_0119 20171007_JS_012020171007_JS_0120 20171007_JS_012120171007_JS_0121 20171007_JS_012620171007_JS_0126 20171007_JS_013120171007_JS_0131

]]> (Stani Photography) Thu, 09 Nov 2017 18:38:07 GMT


Where do I begin? I know Vladi since I know my husband. He is  my sister in law’s brother, but I have heard about his charm and adventurous spirit  long before I met him in person. Both Bulgarians living in the States, Diana and Vladi are very free spirted souls. In the late spring of 2014, Vladi decides to quit his job and follow his dreams. He buys a ticket to Bogota, Colombia and begins year long exploration through  South America one country at a time, all the way to Antarctica. During that time one of Vladi’s friends who lives in Chicago introduces him to Diana and in February 2015, she joins him in Buenos Aires, Argentina. This is how it all began.  When he first saw her she captured him with her mysterious beauty of a wild child. Then they visited Uruguay and Brazil. It was just meant to happen. After  coming back to USA Diana moves from Chicago to Orange County where Vladi lives.

In the Christmas night of 2016 Vladi hides a ring in Diana’s Christmas gift box and proposes.

Knowing both of them as happy campers and travelers I can’t imagine having their wedding somewhere else, but in a forest.  They planned their wedding not just in any forest, but at the Giant Sequoias at Kings Canyon National Park. All the guests stayed at Azalea campground, which was absolutely beautiful and bonding experience. The ceremony took place at the magical Sunset Campground Amphitheater and the reception at the picnic area near the Azalea Campground under the grant sequoia trees. It was just the perfect setting for their forest wedding.

To be honest I was quite surprised when they asked me to be their main photographer at the wedding. I really didn’t expect it, as my family was one of the guests too and Nikola was invited to be the ring bearer. And to say it was an honor for me to be their wedding photographer is not enough. When someone I know invites me to photograph their wedding, it means a lot to me. It means trust and appreciation to my art. But that also means that I need to work extra hard  not to disappoint them and to separate work and personal emotions. Plus it was Nikola’s 4th Birthday at that day. So many emotional events in one day.


Diana and Vladi’s wedding was all DIY. You can see from the images how much they put from their heart in it. There were so many personal elements to it. Diana created all the centerpieces and the decorations. Well, when you have a wedding in the middle of the forest it’s also hard to have a wedding planner or a caterer either.  I think that was one of the most creative and beautiful weddings I have photographed. Sometimes, you don’t need a lot to keep it simple and elegant. Boho Chic kind of style, with Bulgarian Live Folk Music and dancing horo , all was merging so well in the enchanted environment of the big trees around.

Not very popular these days , D+V decided to have a touch of authentic Bulgarian traditions in their wedding, like the groom with his entourage  picking up the maid of honor and the best man. Then they dance horo in front of their housing , which in this case was John Muir Lodge where they stayed for the weekend . That is followed by picking up the bride from her lodging, which in this case was one of the cabins near. There the groom’s family and friends are trying to “buy’ the bride - giving money to her parents and guardians in order to let the grom  enter inside and see his bride. Of course this was done all for the entertainment purposes and it was awesome.  Once, Vladi was let inside “the bride’s  house” he had to find one of her shoe and put money in it so it fits the bride’s foot. From there they both exited ‘the house’  and the bride led the horo dance . The guests were having traditional pita bread with honey as symbol for the newlyweds sweet life together.

The wedding ceremony was another elaborate scene from Diana and Vladi’s wedding. It was  full with humor, love and beautiful mixture between western wedding traditions with Bulgarian ones, and some that I have never seen before (such as telling something on each other’s ear  while putting the rings on).

Diana and Vladi’s outfits were custom designed and sewed by their maid of honor Ivanka Georgieva.  Her wedding dress was inspired by the legends about Samodiva . And everything else looked just like a magical fairytale in the forest.  


beautiful white lace was spread in the middle of each table 

20170916_SG_046720170916_SG_0467 20170916_SG_046820170916_SG_0468

Diana made these two wooden tiles by herself. One was for the best man and the maid of honor and the other one for her and Vladi. 


The only heavy weight wooden table in the picnic area served as the newlyweds table. It was just perfect . It was decorated with pine cones and wild dry flowers.

20170916_SG_049720170916_SG_0497 20170916_SG_048720170916_SG_0487


20170916_SG_049620170916_SG_0496 20170916_SG_049420170916_SG_0494


20170916_SG_000220170916_SG_0002 20170916_SG_001020170916_SG_0010 20170916_SG_004920170916_SG_0049

Guests dancing horo in front of John Muir Lodge when picking up the best man and the maid of honor. 

20170916_SG_007120170916_SG_0071 20170916_SG_007220170916_SG_0072 20170916_SG_010920170916_SG_0109

20170916_SG_011020170916_SG_0110 20170916_SG_012120170916_SG_0121

20170916_SG_011820170916_SG_0118 20170916_SG_012820170916_SG_0128 20170916_SG_013420170916_SG_0134

Milen Varimezov plays gaida (bagpipe) when the bride exists 'her house' . 

20170916_SG_013620170916_SG_0136 20170916_SG_013820170916_SG_0138 20170916_SG_014020170916_SG_0140 20170916_SG_014220170916_SG_0142 20170916_SG_014520170916_SG_0145 20170916_SG_015120170916_SG_0151 20170916_SG_016020170916_SG_0160 20170916_SG_016120170916_SG_0161

After Vladi found the right shoe he is trying to put it on Diana's foot and inserts money on the back so the shoe can fit. 

20170916_SG_016620170916_SG_0166 20170916_SG_016820170916_SG_0168 20170916_SG_018120170916_SG_0181

The bride leads the horo dance in front of 'her house' .



And someone broke one of the champagne glasses. But as we it ' The broken brings happiness'.  



The guests are trying the pita with honey for bride and groom's sweet life together.

20170916_SG_021820170916_SG_0218 20170916_SG_022120170916_SG_0221

20170916_SG_022420170916_SG_0224 20170916_SG_024120170916_SG_0241

20170916_SG_024220170916_SG_0242 20170916_SG_024420170916_SG_0244 20170916_SG_025320170916_SG_0253 20170916_SG_025520170916_SG_0255 20170916_SG_025920170916_SG_0259 20170916_SG_026320170916_SG_0263 20170916_SG_026220170916_SG_0262 20170916_SG_028020170916_SG_0280 20170916_SG_027120170916_SG_0271

Some tourists watching the ceremony from the back.

20170916_SG_027420170916_SG_0274 20170916_SG_031220170916_SG_0312 20170916_SG_029520170916_SG_0295

20170916_SG_032220170916_SG_0322 20170916_SG_032320170916_SG_0323


20170916_SG_033120170916_SG_0331 20170916_SG_031420170916_SG_0314 20170916_SG_035420170916_SG_0354

20170916_SG_036920170916_SG_0369 20170916_SG_038220170916_SG_0382 20170916_SG_037720170916_SG_0377

20170916_SG_038520170916_SG_0385 20170916_SG_048620170916_SG_0486

20170916_SG_038920170916_SG_0389 20170916_SG_041820170916_SG_0418

Bride and Groom Photo session at the Grant Grove in Kings Canyon National Park. 

20170916_SG_040420170916_SG_0404 20170916_SG_040020170916_SG_0400

20170916_SG_041520170916_SG_0415 20170916_SG_042420170916_SG_0424 20170916_SG_042620170916_SG_0426 20170916_SG_043020170916_SG_0430

20170916_SG_043720170916_SG_0437 20170916_SG_043620170916_SG_0436

The bride in front of the Fallen Monarch

20170916_SG_044320170916_SG_0443 20170916_SG_048520170916_SG_0485 20170916_SG_046920170916_SG_0469

]]> (Stani Photography) after bulgarian camping canyon dancing decoration diy enchanted ever fairytale folk forest happily kings live music national park photography planning portraits rings samodiva sequoia wedding Wed, 27 Sep 2017 17:44:03 GMT
MOUNT TAMALPAIS ENGAGEMENT PORTRAIT SESSION: R+U To say I am happy for R and U ( for client's discretion)  who are getting married in a few days is an understatement.  I met R at the same time when I met my love and father of my two boys, George. It was a hot summer wedding in Clearwater Beach, FL, six years ago .  George played the bagpipe, R was the lead singer, and I was the photographer. Who would’ve  thought that one day our lives would continue to cross time and again. When I first heard her singing, she captivated me with her colorful voice. She is one of the most beautiful, multi talented person I know with a lively smile.

Ever since, R would appear in my life and disappear around the world following her dream to become a healer. She volunteered in many humanitarian missions, when she was in dental school.  When I was in my last days of pregnancy with my first son, she came in September to do a headshot portrait  she needed for a residency application.

We met again in September  two years later, when she came to my house for my son’s 2nd birthday party.   It was just before she traveled to Jamaica again to volunteer as a dentist there.

Well, by life’s serendipity all the occasions are happening in September .. she even got engaged in September last year and now she is getting married in September!



When things are meant to happen they happen even  with online dating. This is how it all started, as R and U describe:  ...”with a picture R had taken in Ocho Rios, Jamaica. It happened so that Ulf saw the picture and recognized the place which he had just gotten back from. Over the next few conversations they discovered they have similar views about the world and passions about community, family, dentistry, adventure and food. It was a miracle that their first date actually happened. Growing up in Switzerland, U showed up right on time. Growing up in Bulgaria, R also showed up right on time - about 45 min late. Regardless of the few roadblocks on the way, she drove down to meet U and was pleasantly surprised that he was still there, true to his word, with a smile on his face. Although they met just for drinks, Ulf was impressed that Radka can devour a cheeseburger and fries in record time. "Finally a girl that can eat," is all he said. “  

Then followed a year of dating, full of amazing adventures,  going places, hiking, skiing, and traveling.  “On a beautiful sunny day, R and U went on a mountain bike ride up Mount Tamalpais. They stopped for a picnic to enjoy the beautiful scenery. Little that she knew, U had it all planned out. He knew that R loves Kinder Surprise chocolate eggs. To her surprise, rather than a toy she found The Ring...she agreed on wearing forever.”

I met U for the first time when R asked me to do their engagement photo session. I was impressed by U’s personality and really flattered by their decision to pick me as the photographer.

We chose couple of locations for the engagement session: Muir Beach and Mt. Tamalpais.

Mt. Tam was the place where U proposed R, so it was very special place for them. We went there around sunset and it was mesmerizing , the fog was just showing and created a sea of puffy clouds in the horizon.  

We even found by chance a picnic bench and table where we were able to capture a lovely “ end of day and week” moment  with a glass of red wine and cherries.  It was more than beautiful and so romantic.

20170730_RV_001320170730_RV_0013 20170730_RV_001420170730_RV_0014 20170730_RV_002120170730_RV_0021 20170730_RV_004020170730_RV_0040 20170730_RV_004520170730_RV_0045 20170730_RV_005020170730_RV_0050 20170730_RV_004420170730_RV_0044 20170730_RV_007120170730_RV_0071 20170730_RV_007620170730_RV_0076 20170730_RV_008720170730_RV_0087 20170730_RV_009120170730_RV_0091 20170730_RV_010520170730_RV_0105

RADKA BLOG  2RADKA BLOG 2 20170730_RV_011820170730_RV_0118 20170730_RV_012820170730_RV_0128 20170730_RV_013220170730_RV_0132 20170730_RV_013420170730_RV_0134 20170730_RV_014520170730_RV_0145


20170730_RV_015320170730_RV_0153 20170730_RV_0157-Edit20170730_RV_0157-Edit

20170730_RV_016020170730_RV_0160 20170730_RV_016320170730_RV_0163 20170730_RV_016420170730_RV_0164 20170730_RV_016920170730_RV_0169 20170730_RV_017520170730_RV_0175 20170730_RV_018120170730_RV_0181 20170730_RV_018420170730_RV_0184 20170730_RV_018820170730_RV_0188 20170730_RV_019120170730_RV_0191

]]> (Stani Photography) Sat, 09 Sep 2017 17:47:50 GMT


June 17th, 2017

Mariachi music, salsa dancing, lots of laughing,  tears and beautiful sincere emotions at Sonia and Alex wedding day. 

Sonia and Alex are one of the matchy matchy soul mate couples I am having the chance to work with. And on of the most wonderful people I have met in my life. Both good hearts and all-around kindred spirits as they describe themselves.  When they first contacted me a year ago to book me for their wedding, things just clicked right away between us.  And I knew their wedding will be full with fiesta and tears.    

Sonia and Alex met in 2012 while working on a music together. Alex was the music producer and Sonia was the vocalist. And that's how everything began around music, fun and laugh. It just meant to happen. As Alex says: ‘ I thought Sonia was really beautiful, but not only that, she was also down to Earth and easy to talk to. I almost immediately felt like we had known each other for a long time.’  

Four years after, they both flew to the Bay Area one day where their parents live. Very well planned,  Alex made one of the most romantic proposals to Sonia at the Palace of Fine Arts . With rose petals set by their parents , guitar player playing 'Besame Mucho' and a photographer hiding behind the bushes to capture the moment. Alex got down on one knee and asked Sonia to marry him. Then both sides parents popped out from their hiding places and all drank some champagne and took photos. It was one of the most wonderful  days in their lives.

Sonia and Alex dream wedding took place at the gorgeous  historic wedding venue Mountain House Estate, located  at the rural wine country at Cloverdale. It was just the perfect venue for their wedding day, away from the traffics and hustle in Southern California where the couple lives.

They married, outdoor under the big oak tree at the Mountain House Estate property, surrounded by birds singing, wind breeze touching Sonia’s veil and the leaves of the native trees. A place that bees are buzzing and hills are rolling at sunset time.  Empty canvas to be filled with wonderful memories. Their outdoor Mexican wedding at the Mountain House Estate was just spectacular. Sonia who was born and raised inside the traditions of mexican culture and fiesta created one absolutely beautiful mix of cultural traditions and contemporary wedding inspirations.

_MGL6476-Edit_MGL6476-Edit wedding blog 2wedding blog 2

Sonia reading Alex's vows to her before putting her dress on and tears are coming out of her eyes. What a priceless moment !


One of my favorite backdrops at Mountain House Estate 

wedding blog 11wedding blog 11

 I love that moment of the bridesmaids excitement about Sonia's wedding dress by Essense of Australia design

wedding blog 17wedding blog 17


wedding blog 15wedding blog 15

Personal and elegant. Alex's custom made suit by Indochino  has embroidery inside his jacket with his and Sonia’s initials and their wedding date.


wedding blog 9wedding blog 9

wedding blog 10wedding blog 10

Having a wedding at one location that has separate bridal and groom suits like at Mountain House Estate, allowed me to capture both bride and groom getting ready. 

_MGL6739-Edit_MGL6739-Edit wedding blog 12wedding blog 12

Father and son ready for the Big Day 


Acoustic guitar player at Sonia and Alex wedding ceremony.


Sonia's father escorts her . Very emotional moment! 


It was 100 F that day , but still the big oak tree shade was cooler place to be while saying your vows. 

wedding blog 5wedding blog 5 wedding blog 6wedding blog 6

And the first kiss... 


And presenting you Mr. and Mrs. Noble 


At sunset time after dinner we went to the open field to get some romantic natural light photos of S+A . Just two of them. 

_MGL9921-Edit_MGL9921-Edit _MGL9924-Edit_MGL9924-Edit _MGL9875-Edit_MGL9875-Edit _MGL9905-Edit_MGL9905-Edit _MGL9913-Edit_MGL9913-Edit _MGL9932-Edit_MGL9932-Edit _MGL9812_MGL9812 _MGL9865-Edit_MGL9865-Edit _MGL9846-Edit_MGL9846-Edit


The beautiful flower center pieces were one of the main details of the wedding decor and a reference to the Mexican culture. 

wedding blog 14wedding blog 14 _MGL9351-Edit_MGL9351-Edit

The small sweets bites were one of the top hits of the evening. Beautifully decorated on top of a cart and served in white plates. 


wedding blog 7wedding blog 7

What is a wedding without a glass of champagne...

_MGL8073-Edit_MGL8073-Edit _MGL8162-Edit_MGL8162-Edit

Capturing the moment ... the bridesmaids fixing Sonia's gorgeous wedding dress. 

wedding blog 1wedding blog 1

Mexican inspired wedding decor ... And have you tried Noble Martini? 

wedding blog 13wedding blog 13

decorated buffet tables with beautiful Mexican ceramic pots 

wedding blog 4wedding blog 4

tablecloths were in different vivid colors - purple, yellow, blue 



_MGL8270-Edit_MGL8270-Edit _MGL8178-Edit_MGL8178-Edit

Bridesmaids were wearing grey shade long dresses that were all so beautiful and unique . The flowers by Franceska's Flower and Garden complemented them just perfect. Make up done by Soyi make-up and hair. 





_MGL8541-Edit_MGL8541-Edit _MGL8858-Edit_MGL8858-Edit _MGL8990-Edit_MGL8990-Edit

Images can't describe the emotional moments during the toasts .

wedding blog 2wedding blog 2 _MGL9295-Edit_MGL9295-Edit _MGL9266-Edit_MGL9266-Edit _MGL9421-Edit_MGL9421-Edit

and the first dance ...

IMG_3026-EditIMG_3026-Edit IMG_3185-EditIMG_3185-Edit _MGL9558-Edit_MGL9558-Edit

Dancing to Vivir Mi Vida by Marc Anthony - the perfect song to start the wedding party dancing.

_MGL9690-Edit_MGL9690-Edit IMG_3202-EditIMG_3202-Edit

and we ended up with a quick group photo with all the guests from above the balcony. 

many thanks to the amazing team of wedding vendors who brought that perfect day to life.

Many thanks to the amazing team of wedding vendors who brought that perfect day to life.

Venue: Mountain House Estate

Event Planner: Meghan Magnasco from SoEventful

Event Venue Management: Jenna Britton from theKgroup

Florist: Francesca’s Flowers and Garden

Make up and Hair: Kelly from Soyi

Caterer: Gil Vega Catering   

DJ: DJ Cody from Sutherland Entertainment

Acoustic Guitar: Matthew Fish from Sutherland Entertainment

Officiant: George Crespin



]]> (Stani Photography) boho mexican modern outdoor ranch wedding Fri, 30 Jun 2017 22:21:10 GMT
MOTHER'S DAY IS EVERYDAY [BAY AREA FAMILY PHOTOGRAPHER] Confession from a mother or a letter to my mom


Mother’s Day is just around the corner and I am very happy to curate this blog post with most of my favorite images I  took throughout the last few years of my career as a lifestyle photographer of mothers including some self portraits too.  

My mom has been here since November. I don’t know what I would do without her. She has been helping me with my kids and the household, and so many other things, so I can focus more on my business, my inner balance, being a better parent and better artist. She has been my best friend and biggest support ever , and always next to me when I need her. My mom she even left her job and everything back in Bulgaria last year so she can come here temporary and help me with raising two children. Now, I realize that this wasn’t just a help , but it has been a tremendous  reconnection between us two. Getting to know each other in the last six months after all this years living apart , bonded us event deeper as mother and daughter. Now, myself as a mother of two  I realize the sacrifices my mom has made throughout the years for me and my sister. Even now, when I am a grown up woman she still does it. That makes me think how much sacrifices a mother needs to make and for how long? It is not going to be a day or two , or year or two, it’s going to be a life time for sure. But, knowing that someone out there loves us and needs us and that ‘someone’ is our own child  who we are sacrificing everything for makes us - mothers happy  and loved, and that all matters to us. Nothing else.

It took me a while to decide, which images to select to go on the blog post ( and trust me there were much more ). When I began curating them, the first thing that came to my mind was love - sacrifice for love. The look in all those women’s eyes speak about sacrifice and about love,  and about hope , and future, and something sacred, unique, all so special and inseparable from one another.  Looking at those photos I am so personally touched that all those women - some of them clients, some self portraits, and clients who became friends after all , they all allowed me to capture them so closely and intimate  in that very special moment in their life. So vulnerable, so sensitive , so emotional and still so strong and loving.

Mother’s Day is everyday, don’t forget that. I am surrounded by many mothers nowadays and I can see all the sacrifices that day do for their kids. We must respect, love and always remember that they are our best friends, out support and our strength. The mother will always love you, no matter what, where you are and what you do.



mother images  37mother images 37

mother images  40mother images 40 wedding photographer san franciscowedding photographer san francisco

concord photographerconcord photographer mother images   43mother images 43

mother images  42mother images 42 maternity photographer san farnciscomaternity photographer san farncisco

concord photographerconcord photographer mother images  1mother images 1

wedding photographer san franciscowedding photographer san francisco

bay area family photographerbay area family photographer bay area family photographerbay area family photographer bay area family photographerbay area family photographer

walnut creek wedding photographerwalnut creek wedding photographer

mother images  4mother images 4 mother images  34mother images 34

mother images  33mother images 33 mother images  31mother images 31 mother images  44mother images 44 concord photographerconcord photographer mother images  32mother images 32 mother images  23mother images 23 mother images  40mother images 40 mother images  7mother images 7 mother images  8mother images 8 walnut creek wedding photographerwalnut creek wedding photographer

mother images  16mother images 16 mother images  14mother images 14

bay area family photographerbay area family photographer mother images  29mother images 29 mother images  24mother images 24


mother images  13mother images 13 mother images  13mother images 13

walnut creek wedding photographerwalnut creek wedding photographer walnut creek wedding photographerwalnut creek wedding photographer
mother images  28mother images 28

walnut creek wedding photographerwalnut creek wedding photographer mother images  2mother images 2 bay area family photographerbay area family photographer

mother images  36mother images 36


mother images  12mother images 12 wedding photographer san franciscowedding photographer san francisco

wedding photographer san franciscowedding photographer san francisco mother images  16mother images 16 mother images  11mother images 11 mother images  19mother images 19

mini photo sessionsmini photo sessions

mother images  18mother images 18

mini photo sessionsmini photo sessions



]]> (Stani Photography) best family friend friendship kiss love mom mother photographer relationship Fri, 05 May 2017 19:36:05 GMT
BOTANICAL WEDDING NEAR SANTA CRUZ, CA [RANCHO SOQUEL] Leilani and Matt tying the knot in a beautiful fall afternoon

on October 8th, 2016 at the spectacular Rancho Soquel venue in Aptos, CA.


Leilani and Matt’s wedding was really a dream come true. Surrounded by all the close family and friends, love and happiness were all around us. Five years ago L+M met at Palapas Restaurant and Bar on the sea cliff of Aptos, CA. Those five years were filled with adventures and romance in Costa Rica, Kauai, Mendocino, Santa Barbara, Bali and in Santa Cruz where Matt is from. While living in Kauai where Leilani is from, one warm evening at sunset Matt proposed Leilani. Leilani describes it as ‘He made it all so sweet and romantic! I was totally surprised!!’ Knowing both of them for almost a year, I can say that those two lovebirds are just made for each other. The pictures show it all. Leilani - a nature beauty  inside and out and Matt - the man with the gold heart.

Leilani and Ariel who is her maid of honor, best friend and partner in crime since childhood are the owners of Botanic and Lux, a luxurious lifestyle store in the Downtown Santa Cruz . Described by them as ‘a place for dreamers, lovers and seekers of all things beautiful’. So if you are in the area of Santa Cruz or doing a highway 1 trip don't forget to stop by Botanic and Lux. Talking about their live indoor plants business and born and raised in Hawaii,  Leilani has always been surrounded by nature and flowers. No wonder, she choose Rancho Soquel for the place to say ‘I do’ .  A place in first sight that can be a botanical garden or part of an excotic island. For her wedding day they both wanted everything to be as simple as possible, but the same time to be fresh, elegant and authentic.

Leilani's hair and make-up were done by the talanted Briena Gleitsman 
20161008_LK_000320161008_LK_0003 20161008_LK_001220161008_LK_0012 20161008_LK_000420161008_LK_0004 20161008_LK_001320161008_LK_0013
20161008_LK_001520161008_LK_0015 20161008_LK_001720161008_LK_0017 20161008_LK_001820161008_LK_0018 20161008_LK_002020161008_LK_0020
lei  lei  28lei lei 28
Debbie, Lei's mother in law giving her a special gift to her - a silver necklace she got it in Macedonia for her. Very original and pretty! 
20161008_LK_002720161008_LK_0027 20161008_LK_002820161008_LK_0028
20161008_LK_001120161008_LK_0011 20161008_LK_003020161008_LK_0030
20161008_LK_003320161008_LK_0033 20161008_LK_003420161008_LK_0034 20161008_LK_003520161008_LK_0035 20161008_LK_003620161008_LK_0036
lei  lei  4lei lei 4
20161008_LK_003920161008_LK_0039 20161008_LK_004320161008_LK_0043 20161008_LK_004220161008_LK_0042 20161008_LK_004620161008_LK_0046
lei  lei  5lei lei 5
Leilani's hair and make-up were done by the talanted Briena Gleitsman 
lei  lei  6lei lei 6
Wedding dress by Stone Cold Fox , Bridal bouquet by Willi Wildflower 
lei  lei  1lei lei 1
After the first look Matt opened a bottle of champagne that he got it at the day of their engagement and kept it to the day of the wedding to open it up. This was a very special moment.
Proteas were chosen for the main accent flower of the wedding day. It is special and exotic flower. In the Hawaii culture is consider as a symbol of hospitality and grace. The beautiful bridal bouquet and the bridesmaids' proteas were done by Willi Wildflower
20161008_LK_006620161008_LK_0066 Leilani is one of those people that makes everything looks so easy and simple around her. Her smile is captivating. People wants to be around her and that explains her big bridal party of all that awesome people I had the honor to meet and photograph that day.  The bridesmaid dresses were one of my favorite accents of the wedding theme. Long dresses with flower prints on them , but all uniquely designed from one another by Show Me Your Mu Mu.
While to complement the lady’s more elaborated fashion style the groomsmen were dressed with dark grey pants and plain white shirt. 20161008_LK_007020161008_LK_0070 20161008_LK_007220161008_LK_0072 20161008_LK_007420161008_LK_0074 lei  lei  7lei lei 7 20161008_LK_008120161008_LK_0081 20161008_LK_008220161008_LK_0082 20161008_LK_008420161008_LK_0084 lei  lei  8lei lei 8 20161008_LK_009020161008_LK_0090 20161008_LK_009120161008_LK_0091 20161008_LK_009220161008_LK_0092 20161008_LK_009420161008_LK_0094 20161008_LK_009520161008_LK_0095 20161008_LK_009720161008_LK_0097 20161008_LK_010320161008_LK_0103 lei  lei  18lei lei 18
The center pieces are by Botanic and Luxe
lei  lei  19lei lei 19
Catering by Feast for a King Catering 
20161102_LK_0002-Edit20161102_LK_0002-Edit 20161102_LK_001420161102_LK_0014

The beautiful invitations were printed by Wedding Paper Divas and the Thank you card was designed and printed by me, the photographer. 

lei  lei  21lei lei 21

The guests name tags were handwritten by Matt’s talented step sister Margo. All the little, but important elements were in a botanical theme. Cake by Jennifer Fontes.  20161008_LK_012620161008_LK_0126 lei  lei  10lei lei 10

20161008_LK_011620161008_LK_0116 20161008_LK_012820161008_LK_0128 20161008_LK_012920161008_LK_0129 20161008_LK_013120161008_LK_0131 lei  lei  14lei lei 14
lei  lei  13lei lei 13 lei  lei  15lei lei 15
lei  lei  22lei lei 22 lei  lei  23lei lei 23
invitation 2invitation 2



One of the most authentic elements at the wedding were the inherited ring from Leilani’s grandma whose mom gave it to her at the day of the wedding and Matt’s cufflinks from his grandpa given to him by his mom as well.  

20161008_LK_016320161008_LK_0163 20161008_LK_016520161008_LK_0165

20161008_LK_015420161008_LK_0154 lei  lei  20lei lei 20 20161008_LK_0674-Edit20161008_LK_0674-Edit
20161008_LK_022720161008_LK_0227 20161008_LK_016020161008_LK_0160
_MGL2884_MGL2884 20161008_LK_000120161008_LK_0001
invitation 3invitation 3
20161008_LK_018220161008_LK_0182 lei  lei  11lei lei 11 lei  lei  12lei lei 12 20161008_LK_018920161008_LK_0189

One of the best parts of the party night was the father -daughter dance.

invitation 4invitation 4

Leilani’s mom dancing Hula dance, a hawaiian traditional dance. It as an ancient dancing , Aloha in action. Beautiful! 

invitation 5invitation 5 invitation 6invitation 6 invitation 8invitation 8 invitation 7invitation 7 invitation 9invitation 9 20161008_LK_022320161008_LK_0223
Congratulations to Mr. & Mrs. Zehnder!
]]> (Stani Photography) Sun, 20 Nov 2016 01:33:38 GMT
GETTING MARRIED IN THE COMMUNE [LA SELVA BEACH WEDDING] Cheers to love, laughter and happily ever after for

Madelaine and Scott

May 28th, 2016


I am so excited to share my experience from Madelaine and Scott’s commune wedding.  I got a call from Scott one day that they are looking for a photographer for their wedding. It’s not very common to get a request by the groom. He sounded pretty excited about it and of course he was getting married to the love of his life.

Since they live away from me in Santa Cruz we had our first face to face meeting over a skype video call.  We clicked right away. Of course we did. We all used to live on the L train line in New York and we have a lot of life experience to share with. Who knows maybe we had bumped into each other in the subway without knowing it.

S+M’s story is a destiny. Both newlyweds are from California, whose lives came across at a bar in Brooklyn, NY. However, as it says the home is where your heart is. They moved back to the ocean side of beautiful California in the city of Santa Cruz where they settled down.  Cuba was the place where Scott proposed to Madelaine at Las Jardines de la Reina. This is how their journey began with planning their wedding party at Madelaine’s family house - The Commune at La Selva Beach.  

S+M are one of the sweetest couples I have had the chance to meet and photographed. They wanted a simple outdoor wedding in a location closest to their hearts. And they wanted a big wedding where they can enjoy as much time as possible with all their family and friends. The Commune was the the perfect place for their wedding day. They chose Memorial Day Weekend for their wedding date, so the guests can fully experience the wedding weekend at La Selva Beach.

wedding signwedding sign

hippie weddinghippie wedding

bride with cellphonebride with cellphone wedding datewedding date

la selva beach weddingla selva beach wedding fine art wedding photographyfine art wedding photography

M+S decided to do have their photos and the formal photos made before the ceremony. The first look was the perfect way to start it! 

first look photos la selva beachfirst look photos la selva beach first look photos la selva beachfirst look photos la selva beach first look photos la selva beachfirst look photos la selva beach

bay area wedding photographerbay area wedding photographer walnut creek photographerwalnut creek photographer


bridal portrait with poppiesbridal portrait with poppies

bridal portrait in ranchbridal portrait in ranch la selva beach weddingla selva beach wedding

walnut creek photographerwalnut creek photographer

Can't say no to a dog in a photo especially with a name Porkchop. 

formal group wedding portraitsformal group wedding portraits

Photo of all the three families living at The Commune. 

walnut creek photographerwalnut creek photographer bridesmaids la selva beach weddingbridesmaids la selva beach wedding

outdoor weddingoutdoor wedding

DIY wedding table decoration for an outdoor reception. 

diy wedding decoration californiadiy wedding decoration california diy wedding decoration californiadiy wedding decoration california



wedding guest tag ideaswedding guest tag ideas wedding reception menuewedding reception menue

All 208 name tags were hand written.

oak and rye pizzaoak and rye pizza All the catering was handled by Oak and Rye Pizza. The woodfire pizza oven was one of the dining attractions at the wedding.  oak and rye pizzaoak and rye pizza

santa cruz wedding photographysanta cruz wedding photography While waiting for the ceremony to start Madelaine was enjoying drink and talk with her friends.  la selva beach weddingla selva beach wedding

la selva beach weddingla selva beach wedding santa cruz wedding photographysanta cruz wedding photography

santa cruz wedding photographysanta cruz wedding photography

The boys and girls houses were accross each other. Capturing lots of candid shots was the must at the wedding, so much was going on around it! 
best bay area photographersbest bay area photographers best bay area photographersbest bay area photographers california weddingscalifornia weddings 20160528_SS_000920160528_SS_0009

california weddingscalifornia weddings best bay area photographersbest bay area photographers

kids at weddingkids at wedding ...and there was plenty of fun for the kids too around The Commune!  20160528_SS_001720160528_SS_0017 california weddingscalifornia weddings california weddingscalifornia weddings And here comes the beautiful bride... walnut creek weddingswalnut creek weddings wedding ceremony at la selva beachwedding ceremony at la selva beach wedding ceremony at la selva beachwedding ceremony at la selva beach I thought I was the only photographer at the wedding. I always try to capture the face of the groom when his wife to be very soon is walking the aisle. It's one of the must have photos for the wedding album. You never know who else will be inside the frame.  best bay area photographersbest bay area photographers wedding ceremony at la selva beachwedding ceremony at la selva beach wedding ceremony at la selva beachwedding ceremony at la selva beach and tears are rolling over her face from happiness and emotions.. wedding ceremony at la selva beachwedding ceremony at la selva beach wedding ceremony at la selva beachwedding ceremony at la selva beach 20160528_SS_002920160528_SS_0029

You know what love means when his eyes are shining so much.  wedding ceremony at la selva beachwedding ceremony at la selva beach wedding ceremony at la selva beachwedding ceremony at la selva beach Funny and real stories are the best during the wedding vows! 

wedding ceremony at la selva beachwedding ceremony at la selva beach

and sometimes some of the sweetest guests fall asleep during those speeches.. wedding ceremony at la selva beachwedding ceremony at la selva beach 20160528_SS_003420160528_SS_0034 wedding ceremony at la selva beachwedding ceremony at la selva beach Madelaine and Scott ceremony was under a big oak tree where she used to play there as a free spirited child surrounded by vegetable farms and the golden hour of the warm Californian sunset.  20160528_SS_003620160528_SS_0036

wedding ceremony at la selva beachwedding ceremony at la selva beach It calls sister's love... wedding ceremony at la selva beachwedding ceremony at la selva beach wedding ceremony at la selva beachwedding ceremony at la selva beach 20160528_SS_004120160528_SS_0041 non traditional weddingnon traditional wedding wedding ceremony at la selva beachwedding ceremony at la selva beach

The ring bearers... so cute and so little and so in style...It's the image when the bride gives a kiss to the youngest at the wedding. Oh, darling.. they are so adorable!  wedding ceremony at la selva beachwedding ceremony at la selva beach commune weddingcommune wedding commune weddingcommune wedding commune weddingcommune wedding

and the first kiss...

non traditional weddingnon traditional wedding commune weddingcommune wedding 20160528_SS_007420160528_SS_0074 commune weddingcommune wedding commune weddingcommune wedding non traditional weddingnon traditional wedding

california weddingscalifornia weddings

There were lots of wine and champagne and an oyster bar by Bill the Oyster Man. Guests were enjoying the nice outdoor weather, mingling with each other.  20160528_SS_001920160528_SS_0019

20160528_SS_012720160528_SS_0127 non traditional wedding cateringnon traditional wedding catering wedding cake bakery bay areawedding cake bakery bay area

All 20 cakes were homed backed 

cocktail hour at sunsetcocktail hour at sunset cocktail hour at early afternoon sunsetcocktail hour at early afternoon sunset cocktail hour at early afternoon sunsetcocktail hour at early afternoon sunset cocktail hour at early afternoon sunsetcocktail hour at early afternoon sunset cocktail hour at early afternoon sunsetcocktail hour at early afternoon sunset vintage weddingvintage wedding

commune weddingcommune wedding commune weddingcommune wedding

Thank you M+S for sharing this joyful day with you! Cheers! 

]]> (Stani Photography) . best ceremony champagne cheese commune couples cruz diy family friends happiness love marriage married marry oak outdoor oyster pizza rye santa smiles tree wedding wine Mon, 06 Jun 2016 22:41:55 GMT

location: Mount Diablo near Clayton, CA 

As I didn’t feel taking any photos while I was pregnant I really wanted to take photos of all the pregnant women that I know.  I had no energy to that at that time though. Well, I did that months after I gave birth. Suddenly, many of the women around me were expecting a second child. Now, a mother of two I invited them to a group maternity shot. Curious, how an image with group of pregnant women will look like. Should I do it in a studio or outdoor? Should they be naked or all dressed up? I decided outdoor and let them choose  how they want to be photographed. It wasn’t a documentary work where I could portray what really feels to be pregnant and what pregnant women have to deal with nine months in their life.  It was staged where women should look beautiful and like themselves when they the image. I only needed one image. 


flower crown from red rosesflower crown from red roses


flower crown from plum blossom treeflower crown from plum blossom tree


maternity portrait  like paintingmaternity portrait like painting

maternity group portrait with flower crownsmaternity group portrait with flower crowns

I thought that as a metaphor for beginning of  a new life,  spring was the best season of the year for the photoshoot. After, raining so much this year in the Bay Area everything was blooming, the grass was saturated green , flowers all over the hills and a nice fresh air is coming out of all the leaving flora  around after the rain. It’s a great opportunity for spring photos here.

Pregnancy is a very special time for us women. It lasts only nine months. Women are glowing during that time.  A new life will be born. We, women feel beautiful and realize that this is not going to last forever and ever. At least I felt like that when I was pregnant both times. Women are Goddesses. That’s how I envisioned that photoshoot.

pregnant women depicted as goddessespregnant women depicted as goddesses group maternity in naturegroup maternity in nature pregnant women dressed in lace dressespregnant women dressed in lace dresses maternity portrait in white dressmaternity portrait in white dress pregnant woman in her thirtiespregnant woman in her thirties maternity portrait in flower dressmaternity portrait in flower dress

happy maternity group portraithappy maternity group portrait portrait best friends pregnantportrait best friends pregnant concord maternity photographerconcord maternity photographer


]]> (Stani Photography) belly crowns diablo flower maternity mount nature pregnancy spring Thu, 05 May 2016 22:20:33 GMT
ONE DAY FAMILY TRIP TO POINT REYES NATIONAL SEASHORE, CA [FAMILY-TRAVEL PHOTOGRAPHY] Where in California you can see in one place a whale, elephant seal, tule elks and a historic lighthouse? 

 At Point Reyes  of course. 


Point Reyes has been in my to do travel list destination for a quite awhile. After I gave birth to Damian  we haven't had so many opportunities for traveling with hiking and sightseeing. Now, when he is more than nine months old I felt much more confident to do such trips with the kiddos.  Plus my grandma is here from Bulgaria, which is another good excuse for such trips.

George and I visited it once when I was pregnant with our first son in the summer of 2013. But now , it was different. I felt much more energetic and enthusiastic to even make some photos there. That day we were very organized as unusual. We left the house at 8 am, stopped for a coffee at Bovine Bakery in the small town of  Point Reyes Station, CA  and got at the lighthouse parking lot at 10:15am. No traffic, just a green grass all over the road, farms and fresh spring air.

We had a plan that day. Wow, making plans with two small kids? Yes, at least I try and especially that day it worked.  Point Reyes is a very educational place and especially for kids and great outdoor activity location in Marin County for a family weekend. If you are lucky as we were that day you could see a whale swimming in the ocean,the northern elephant seals and a herd of  tule elks.

Oh and the spring. We did the trip in the first weekend of April. Let me tell you everything was so beautiful out there, the hills were covered by all kind of flowers and the air was so fresh.
What makes Point Reyes National Seashore a must see travel destination in Northern California is that  it is the second foggiest place in North America and the windiest place on the Pacific Coast. Driving to the lighthouse in the fog felt like going into the infinity . We saw few deers near the road . We didn't see any cars on the road, so I was wondering if the lighthouse is open. But we saw few deers near the road Once. Once we got to the lighthouse parking lot there were few cars there. Suddenly, after our arrival the parking lot started filling up quickly. In fifteen min the lot was almost full. If you plan a trip to the Point Reyes Lighthouse get there by 10am if you want to really enjoy what the park offers and get to the lighthouse before it closes in the afternoon ( I think 4pm).