"Bals on the Side"

I've never had this option before at an eatery LOL - 

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But I guess if I had the choice that's what I would pick XD. 
Without question.

(PS - the salad was actually amazing: Chicken Curry Salad at The Devil's Teeth in San Francisco. My boyfriend & my bestie's husband had the Special Breakfast sandwich on a biscuit. They do it up right.)

\m/,
e
 

Karen & Darius ~ Truly Blessed :) . Awesome Serenading Bridesmaids, Super Cute Pink Robes, & A Very Cool Double Ceremony!!

Karen & Darius ~ Truly Blessed :) . Awesome Serenading Bridesmaids, Super Cute Pink Robes, & A Very Cool Double Ceremony!!

Sometimes you meet someone and you instantly connect with them in a very happy way ~ it was Totally like this when I spoke to Karen for the first time on the phone. She had left me a message earlier that day asking if I was available on her wedding date, and after speaking with her I hung up and was like, "OMG I soooo hope we work together!!!" (that evening I also gushed to my boyfriend how much I hoped that she would choose me, that's how much I hoped Lol!). She just had such a sweet, uplifting spirit to her, that even just chatting with her for that fairly brief time was so refreshing and wonderful.

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Who Wants to Get "Sandwich Face???" (aka "Shimojis", & the story of my phone)

Before I start, just a little background on my phone.

I got my first smart phone about 6 years ago in 2011. Before that, I had 2 hand-me-up phones from my brother (the kind where you have to push the same button 3 times to get all of the letters when you text kind of phones LOL). 

The first one's life ended when I did not follow one of my first rules of shooting:

"Put your phone in your camera bag when you are working by the ocean."

LOL you can guess what happened X( ....

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The second one, sadly, met a very similar fate.

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People who know me were not surprised (a plus is that now I can always count on my friends to send me random updates whenever any new waterproof technology comes out lol!).

So, when my brother's new iPhone 4s had a malfunctioning button, I offered to take it off his hands, went to the Apple store, and they were nice enough to send me a brand new one :D! Yay great customer service!!!  A+, I say!

All of my friends were ecstatic: Finally we could all group text!!!

(With my granny-phones they always had to text me separately - so many cheers Lol.)

I suppose in many ways I have always been a little old fashioned. So I just didn't see the harm in writing things down on a calendar, or emailing when I got back home at the end of the day. Or using things until they were completely worn out or broken - or drowned in the sea I suppose LOL.
My Mom just says that I should stop being so cheap lol - XD thanks Mom.

But with all that being said, I will be perfectly honest and say that my new smartphone did totally change my life! 
 

Fast forward to today, my awesome iPhone 4s is still a topic of conversation:

My uncle:
"Hey Erin! I saw your phone on Antique Roadshow last night!"

My best friend (whose husband works for Apple):
"Tony really hates your phone, Erin." 

Another Good Friend (when my case broken & I was using my phone sans-case):
"OMG did you finally get a new phone???"
(sad face & silence when they realized this was not true)

My boyfriend's dentist:
"Wow! Does it still run apps?"
(I haven't even met my boyfriend's dentist)

Random cashier at the drugstore when I'm buying gum:
"Dang, that's really old school."
*Silence*
My Boyfriend: ("Erin, he's talking to you.")
Me: .... X( 

So basically everyone has something to say about my phone LOL. Even strangers. 

I get it.
It's really old.
It's slower.
It's camera is kind of poopy.

But it still works!!! And I really still like it!
So.

Everybody who hates on my phone gets SANDWICH FACE!!! Wahahaha!!!

ENTER: The "Shimojis"

(Taken with my phone at Tokyo Central Japanese market in the refrigerated food section. My boyfriend & I have looked for Sandwich Face ever since that day, but have never seen him again.) 

(Taken with my phone at Tokyo Central Japanese market in the refrigerated food section. My boyfriend & I have looked for Sandwich Face ever since that day, but have never seen him again.) 

(Sandwich face is a "Shimoji". The term one of my old friends Calvin coined - basically the Shimazu form of Emojis.)

Since my phone is so old, it does not support many things (such as many of the newer emojis). Actually lots of times I get these kinds of messages from my friends, family, and Adam too when we are texting about wedding shoots coming up or about ramen lol:

Wahaha tan colored block!!! What do you mean? What mysteries are within the question mark error icon?? XO

But never fear!! I am always at the ready to reply with the appropriate homemade, low-tech, & very ghetto pictorial expression of my true feelings!!

Pumpkin from Ralphs: "Happiness! :D"

(Taken at the local Ralphs in October)

(Taken at the local Ralphs in October)

Eggs Benedict Face: "Quiet Contemplation"

(After brief discussion with Adrienne, my bestie, we have decided that this contemplation is of not the most intelligent nature LOL.)

(After brief discussion with Adrienne, my bestie, we have decided that this contemplation is of not the most intelligent nature LOL.)

Anxious Whale: "Worry"

My boyfriend is really good at crane games.

My boyfriend is really good at crane games.

Anxious Whale + Tie-Dye Chicken - "REALLY Worried."

Like he's really good at them LOL :D

Like he's really good at them LOL :D

Octopus Guy - "There was no coffee today Lol."

"You Trippin'./ Hmmm? This still confuses me."

Photo cred: @forest_limit an awesome bird/nature photographer from Japan!! Totally check them out too!! https://www.instagram.com/forest_limit/

Photo cred: @forest_limit an awesome bird/nature photographer from Japan!! Totally check them out too!! https://www.instagram.com/forest_limit/

These are just a few of the Shimojis. One day I will get a new phone for sure. Until that day though, I will continue to gleefully wander out into the world to search for more unexplored weirdness. Shimojis & beyond :D!

Wishing everybody Happy Pumpkins for days!! XD
~ e :) 

Make-a-Wish* Shoot: Walk for Wishes Fundraising Event :) !

Make-a-Wish* Shoot: Walk for Wishes Fundraising Event :) !

Even the other side of the Force was with us today LOL!! 'Tis the power of wishes :D!

I was so happy and honored to be asked to be one of the volunteer photographers at this year's Walk for Wishes at the Orange County Great Park!
I've been shooting the walks for several years now, and I swear I always receive so much more than I ever can imagine I could ever give when working with these amazing Wish Kids, their families, & Wish Granters :) .  

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Omg Jordan & Jon! Can you both be any cuter?? I really don't know how :D! Engagement Session

Omg Jordan & Jon! Can you both be any cuter?? I really don't know how :D! Engagement Session

I love running around in the hills. Like really love it LOL. So what could possibly make this even better? Running around the hills with an Awesome Couple + Super bloom :D!! Yes!

Jordan & Jon are having a Destination Wedding in Cabo san Lucas next year (I am so super excited to fly over and shoot their wedding btw, Omg), and for their engagement session, they wanted to feature a place very near and dear to their hearts ~ Palos Verdes, where they both have spent much time and also now live :) . 

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Meet "Hedgy"!

Meet "Hedgy", busy keeping the wedding ring safe.

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He is the fuzzy friend of the wonderful sister of the bride (he also loves a good macaron).
Cannot resist the cute XD!!
<3,
~ e

Travis the Super Cool Graffiti Artist Tags for Our Shoot!

This was Totally a first for me!

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I was out shooting with Elise & Kristopher (one of my awesome couples :) in Venice, CA for their engagement session when we met Travis, who was working away on one of the public walls by the skatepark.
I had no idea btw that there were legal public spaces available to anyone who wants to create graffiti art!

Here's a link to learn more!

http://venice311.org/venice-beach-park/venice-public-art-graffiti-walls/

I've always loved & supported street art so this is pretty darn cool if I do say so :D.

We struck up a conversation with him, and the next thing we know, he's tagging their last name on a wall so we can take some shots with it!
LOL Travis, you totally made our day - you seriously rock \m/ .

Travis, you are shirtless & also awesome XD! Here he is tagging their name on the wall!

Travis, you are shirtless & also awesome XD! Here he is tagging their name on the wall!

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The situation was very serendipitous, as we had scheduled this mini shoot due to the fact that a couple weeks ago we had to end our session a little early due to really crazy, unexpected, high winds - LOL as you can see from the image below!

This day though, ended with a beautiful sunset :) . 

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Elise & Kris, I had a blast shooting with you both and cannot wait for your wedding next month :D!!
Stay cool,
~ e :) 

Shaka Selfies for All :D!

LOL!! We love it when our couples and their families ask us to take selfies with them XD !! 

From the mehndi, to the beautiful day of their Nikkah (gorgeous weather, shooting by the sea), and then on the day of the Walima (when we shot both in downtown Long Beach and by the super cool lighthouse by the shore! :) , we had a blast and such a warm welcome from them and from their loved ones.

Congratulations again guys!!! I can't wait to start editing!
Spread that Aloha! :) 
~ e
 

Natalie's Wish

Natalie's wish was to be a ballerina - so Make-A-Wish teamed up with Subaru USA to make it happen :) !  After a red carpet welcome and a few rehearsals, she danced on stage at the beautiful Orpheum Theater in downtown Los Angeles in front of a crowd of family and friends, alongside three amazing professional dancers. She was absolutely perfect. Rock that tutu, girl :D !!

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It is always an honor and a joy to work with these wonderful people and all of the incredible wish kids! The experience is amazing and very humbling at the same time - and I always feel like I am gifted so much more from it than I give.

This is just one of my favorite shots of the day.

Much love, 
~ e

#7 - Jump the Record-Setting Snow In Mammoth! (aka We Got Snowed In!!)

"Jumping Awkwardly In Front of Impressive Objects Until I'm 80"

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"So. Although I don't take a lot of photos of people jumping, I started this collection a couple years back and am going to continue to do this until I'm 80 - so eventually there is going to be an 80-year-old woman jumping. 
Not sure why, but that never stopped me before anyways Lol!"

Wow! I have never seen so much snow in Mammoth, not even from way back in the day when I used to go skiing with my folks. It was sooo pretty, but not very good for driving in Lol - Hwy 395 was completely closed for 2 days! But we got really, really good at digging out cars from the snowbanks and putting on chains XD! And what about the bread at Erik Schat's on the way back in Bishop, eh? Yay! 

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We also made a Snow Chicken! He lives in a snow cave LOL.

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Powder for DAYS!!!

Stay warm :) , 
~ e

Best Pen Ever!! :D

Who wouldn't want to write with a little tuna roll?? All we had to do to win you was to eat 15 plates of sushi LOL! 

ErinShimazuPhotography_sushipen

My boyfriend took me to Kula Revolving Sushi Bar in Torrance, and I was very pleasantly impressed! Just the fact that I get to watch food revolve all around me pretty much makes it for me X) , but much of the sushi is quite tasty for the price (although our go-to in LA is still Sugarfish of course :), and there is also a really cool secondary conveyor belt: it's right alongside the regular one and delivers any made-to-order food right to your table! I want to go back and take a video of this, since right before your plate leaves the kitchen on the belt, you hear a "Ding-Dong!" doorbell sound lol! 

Cannot resist the cute!!
~ e

#6 - Jump the Washington Monument! Preeti & Aman's Destination Wedding, Virginia

"Jumping Awkwardly In Front of Impressive Objects Until I'm 80"

ErinShimazuPhotography_jumpwashingtonmonument

"So. Although I don't take a lot of photos of people jumping, I started this collection a couple years back and am going to continue to do this until I'm 80 - so eventually there is going to be an 80-year-old woman jumping. 
Not sure why, but that never stopped me before anyways Lol!"

We traveled to Virginia to work with one of our awesome couples, Preeti & Aman - I absolutely love them, they're so cool :) . About an hour or so after we landed, we were welcomed with open arms at the mehndi, where we were treated to homemade Indian food :D (Omg totally one of our favorite kinds of food - other than traditional after-wedding ramen of course Lol)! It was soooo good - we felt super lucky!!

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Preeti waiting for her mehndi to dry!

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They're so cute, thank you so much again you guys!!

They're so cute, thank you so much again you guys!!

We then took advantage of arriving three days before the wedding to shoot some detail shots of Preeti's jewelry and the couple's wedding outfits!  From chatting with her I knew that she really loved nature and greenery, so I totally wanted to incorporate this theme into her photos as much as I could.  It just so happened that there was a very lush forest-y area in the back of her parents' home which turned out to be really fun to work with! This still is one of my favorite wedding jewelry series I've done to date - can I take the forest with me on all of my shoots Lol? I would really, really like that.

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Thank you Adam, for all the cool shots of Aman's outfit too!

Thank you Adam, for all the cool shots of Aman's outfit too!

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The next two days of shooting were so much fun as well.  We had a blast at both the Sangeet and on the Big Day, and were so grateful and honored to be a small part of this amazing celebration :) . 

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Thank you so much again Preeti & Aman! You guys are the best, and many congratulations again!
~ e

Italia! A Few More Post-Destination Wedding Adventures :)

"Scorps", our super rad scorpion car (aka the Fiat 595 Abarth hehe) took us on many an adventure after Matt & Michelle's amazing castle wedding. Here are just a few images from our travels :) .

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After eating ALL of the gelato (lol see previous post!) we explored more of the beautiful city of Siena.

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I have a thing for windows :).

Firenze! :D  Photo cred: Adam Dotson

Firenze! :D  Photo cred: Adam Dotson

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We had to try it just once LOL. Courtesy of Adam's iPhone.

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We totally wanted to stop here LOL!

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Ciao for now!
~ e