Nothing is more exciting for me to photograph, than a couple who has decided to have Sleeping Beauty Castle wedding photos on the morning after their wedding. It’s always at some unearthly hour, it’s always the morning after a jam packed wedding day, and it’s always, always, amazing. I just finished going through the photos for Chris and Carrie’s beautiful wedding day, and couldn’t help but share a few behind the scene images from the day/night/morning with you.
Chris and Carrie’s wedding day was really sweet. There were so many moments that I can’t wait to share, but for this particular post, I’m going to start at the end. Right when everyone was hugging and singing and saying goodbye.
Victor, from As You Wish Events, wrapping up the night.
The nice thing about having a castle shoot the day after a wedding, is there’s less pressure. Whenever I photograph a wedding, there’s always a running list in my mind of details and couple photographs that I want to take. For morning castle shoots, I know I’ll have Chris and Carrie’s undivided attention for an hour at the castle . I never have that amount of time on a wedding day, so there isn’t as much of a time crunch when I work through my list. Before saying goodbye to Chris and Carrie for the night, my assistant Louise and I went over our list of what we’d taken and what needed to be done in the morning. We packed a few details from the reception for the next day, let Carrie know to keep her bouquet, and made a shot list for the castle (in addition to what we’d already planned). Then it was time to go! Once we said goodbye, I drove to my friend’s house for the night because I live pretty far away and didn’t want to fall asleep driving.
Confession: I didn’t go straight to their house though. First I went and got some coffee for the next morning. It was going to be old coffee, but at least it was coffee! I made it to Cathy’s at 1:15 in the morning, and was so happy to see she had left me a Nightmare Before Christmas blanket to use.
side note: Trevor is making fun of me for including this photo, but it made my night. It’s the little things, amiright?
I set my alarm for 4:00am and took about two seconds to fall asleep.
After sleeping for two and a half hours (ack!), I woke up, rechecked my camera gear, grabbed my cold coffee, and made my way to Disneyland. Now that I’m looking back, I’m not sure why I left with cold coffee. I think I was too tired at that point to make good decisions…like taking one minute to use the microwave.
It always feels so strange to see the Rose Court Garden so early and quiet the morning after a wedding. It was funny to think I’d been there just a few hours before, and there wasn’t a trace of the beautiful wedding decorations anywhere to be seen.
When I made it to the Adventure Tower, I had a few moments to finish my coffee up before Chris, Carrie, and Tara from Fairytale Hair and Makeup came out of the elevator. I love it when I work with Tara on these shoots, she’s always just as excited as I am. It makes me feel a little less dorky…..just a little. 😉
*things to notice in this photo:
1) The skirt and the shoes in the photo below? My feet were killing me, and I knew Carrie and Chris wouldn’t mind if I had a morning of comfort over style.
2) zomg, it is still dark outside.
3) There’s no steam from my coffee cup. Next time I will take a moment to use my friend’s microwave.
Chris, Carrie, and Tara coming out of the elevator. I think they were all tired too, because after Chris came out, the doors accidentally shut and Carrie and Tara remained in the elevator while Chris started to press the button to get it open, teehee:
Here is a photo of Tara and I, excited to be up at four in the morning. Seriously, what is wrong with us?
While we waited to be picked up and taken to the park, we talked about the wedding the night before. When our golf cart arrived, we said goodbye to Tara and made our way to Disneyland. When we got there, it was still dark.
But we didn’t mind. 🙂
Things you notice early in the morning before the park opens:
1) You can really hear the music in the park because it’s so quiet.
2) The park has a completely different feel when it’s empty.
3) The park is spotless. I think it’s clean during the day too, but in the morning it’s so clean that it sparkles….I’m thinking there has to be pixie dust involved.
4) You always discover new details that are harder to find when the park is open (and you’re too busy to notice because you are on a mission to get to Space Mountain.)
5) Everyone is so friendly. Seriously, all of the Cast Members that open up the park are so friendly. I think it makes the Cast Member’s morning to see a wedding couple at the beginning of the day, and Cast Members always says congratulations and comment about how beautiful the bride looks.
6) Watching the sun rise while you’re in Disneyland is beautiful. Nuff said.
Having a castle to yourself as the sun rises is one of the most amazing experiences a photographer can have, and I feel so fortunate that I’ve had the opportunity to take photographs here. So much so, that I feel teary eyed every single time I walk through the drawbridge and hear “When You Wish Upon a Star”. Every. Single. Time. Holy smokes, I’m sappy.
When the sun began to rise, we had a wonderful time posing around the castle. We took photos by the wishing well, behind the castle, and in the castle area that is adjacent to Pixie Hollow. I love this area because imo, it’s always where the sun looks the most beautiful in the morning (I think it looks best on the Rivers of America when the sun sets at the end of the day).
Doesn’t Carrie look lovely?
When we left, I turned around and quickly snapped a shot of the Partners Statue before leaving and saying goodbye to the park.
When we arrived at the hotel, I finished up the photos from the list, and then said goodbye to Carrie and Chris. I’m going to miss those two. I asked them if they can have a one year anniversary wedding at the park again next year, I think they nearly passed out when I brought up the idea.
But in all seriousness, what a morning! And all finished before 7:30 AM! I made my way home, inhaled some hot coffee, spent time with my son and husband, then uploaded photos from the wedding and started thinking about the day all over again. <3