We first met Angela + Erica last summer during Gay Pride week in our hometown, San Francisco. Weeks earlier, Angela shared her plan with us. She wanted to propose to Erica in a tree, a place that they could both come back to and remember their special day. Prior to their arrival we scouted the city looking for the stoutest candidate, discovering a grand California buckeye in the Botanical Gardens in Golden Gate Park that Angela loved. The plan was simple and elegant: we'd take photos of the two of them like for a regular couple's photo session, and when we reached the designated tree, Angela would propose to Erica.
After taking a boat ride, posing under a waterfall, and visiting a pagoda, we wandered to the native California plants section at the Botanical Gardens, and marveled at the tall, California buckeye tree. Erica immediately found a bough to perched herself on; and Angela hid the ring behind her back. Looking up at Erica under a bower of branches, Angela presented the ring, and Erica, from behind a stream of joyous tears said, "Yes!"
Helping Erica down from the tree, they popped a bottle of bubbly under the giant canopy to celebrate. We gave them a few minutes to themselves to enjoy the moment, and wandered behind a tree of our own, to pull out a box of tissues. Tears of joy.
A few months later, we reunited, to photograph Erica and Angela's beautiful outdoor wedding just outside Austin, in Bastrop, Texas.
The weather report declared an almost certain chance of Texas thunderstorms. In fact, we passed over huge thunderheads looming like castle turrets as we flew into Austin. Although we prepared for rain, we had a good feeling about the day. Angela + Erica are the most wonderful, sweet people, and we knew their wedding day could only turn out perfectly.
As we drove to the Cedar Bend wedding site in the early morning, our windshield wipers squeaked across the glass, swatting away the rain. Uh-oh. But, as we pulled into the gravel drive of the parking lot, and turned off the engine, we stopped for a moment and heard nothing but silence. Then, the cheerful chirping of birds greeted us. The rain had stopped! Slowly, through the soft blue of morning, the sun came peering out, and once we made our way up the stairs of the red barn to see the beautiful brides, the light just came streaming in through their room windows. It was the start of a miraculous, beautiful day.
We posted a first sneak peek here, of Angela and Erica, near the ceremony site after they got married, sharing a tender moment under a pine tree, with colored ribbons from their carnival themed wedding fluttering and flowing around them. We are excited to share some more photos, from the quiet moments before the ceremony, when anticipation is high, and the brides are preparing for their big day. To keep things a surprise, Angela + Erica got ready in separate rooms just across the hall from each other, and family and friends bustled back and forth between them. As they got their makeup and hair done, they talked about how excited they were to spend the rest of their lives together, and their dreams of their future together.
All the little details were perfect, and the brides looked absolutely stunning in their white wedding gowns. They hadn't seen others' dresses, yet the style and fabrics coordinated perfectly together, and brides looked so lovely in them. Wait until you see their overwhelmed, heartfelt reaction when they see each other for the first time down the aisle! The day turned out gorgeous and bright, and with the flood of love for Erica and Angela high under the broad blue Texas sky, there was hardly a dry eye in the audience. But we're getting ahead of ourselves; we'll post Part II of Erica + Angela's wedding soon, featuring lovely wedding details and their gorgeous wedding ceremony among the pine trees.
Congratulations Erica + Angela!!! You are married! We are so happy for you.
Sam + Ariel