FULLERTON & PERRIS, CALIFORNIA - Weddings and culture go hand in hand, and I always find it fascinating to experience human complexity through them. This year alone, I've been in the middle of the traditional drum beats of a Muslim wedding. I've photographed Southerners lining up for a country-style line dance. I've shed a tear seeing the way Asians honor their parents. I've broken into laughter from the great times of my Black brothers (Yeah, I have 7% African blood in my DNA, so yeah, my brothers). The point is, sometimes you experience all these cultures only to realize you have fallen out of touch with your strongest blood. In our case, the Mexican culture.
Although I have no regrets experiencing all these cultures, you do get a sense of appreciation for your own culture when you come back. Jasmin and Jose's wedding did that. See, Jose is a Charro. They are a big, proud part of our culture. They are what cowboys are to Americans, what samurais are to Japanese, knights are to the English. I think you get my point.
When Jasmin contacted me about her wedding and the style she was going for, I was ready to run over my own mother to get this wedding. Not only because of the style they were going for, but also because I was curious how the photography style we use for the Old Hollywood Portraits would do with the Charo-style the wedding would have. I hoped for Cine De Oro vibes. Google that.
We arrived at the church in Fullerton as people were waiting to get in. My wife and I went in to meet with Jose. We found him in a small room on the side of the main area. He was in a calm state, waiting for Jasmin, his bride-to-be, to arrive.
My wife and I separated to capture different aspects as the guests waited to be given the chance to go in and take their places. Meanwhile, Jose and I talked about the day ahead and photographed some shots of him and his awesome custom-made Charro outfit.
Once the congregants arrived and took their seats, Jasmin arrived, and the ceremony began. Jasmin entered the room and stole everyone's breath away. She looked so beautiful in her white dress, her gorgeous eyes focused only on Jose as he began to tear up. Well, I think all of us did. There were so many tearful and happy moments after the ceremony as well.
By the way, my people are so gorgeous. Seriously, not to diminish others, but seeing the crowd of Mexicans and Chicanos along with my wife, I concluded that we are very beautiful people.
WHILE WE WAIT
After the ceremony, we traveled across counties towards Perris to celebrate Jasmin and Jose's wedding, but we had too much time to kill. We couldn't do the wedding portraits because the sun was way too harsh. So we grabbed our cameras and photographed some little moments while we waited for the sun to lower down. We took advantage of the time to photograph some details of the outfits the newlyweds wore, along with details of the reception venue.
When the sunset arrived, we headed out around the neighborhood and took advantage of some open fields to take some beautiful shots of these two lovebirds. I was happy with the results of them. I could have photographed them forever.
I never felt so at home as I did when the reception began. Seeing the guests enjoying their beers, the Mexican food, the random dust devil that nearly took out some guests who were under the tarp, the dirt floor, the Charros, the banda music playing in the background. It made my heart happy. Although banda music has never been my favorite genre, I do enjoy the sound of them at a party. Enough about me; let me shut up and just let you see the photos and let them tell you the story.
CINE DE ORO
Back to my curiosity, The Charo Style Wedding with My Old Hollywood Style. To put it shortly, A success.
We want to thank Jasmin and Jose along with the friends and family for giving us the honor of photographing their wedding. We also want to thank them for putting us in touch with our roots again. We hope nothing but love for you and the people that make your world.