Nicole Caldwell Photo

First Look | Insight into a Bride and Grooms experience | Photographed at the Surf and Sand Resort, Laguna Beach


    “That first look and those moments are truly felt and will be kept as “Ours and our own.” and that is  what made the “the first look”……Awesome.   –The Groom

From the Groom-
      I guess most people believe growing up it was going to be “bad luck” to see the bride prior to walking down the isle. I do not  believe in bad luck or superstitions really, unless they have been specifically cast upon me…..  When Vinessa told me we were doing a “first look shoot” I was actually very relieved and even more excited than I was already.  Having spent a little time behind a camera I know  that the best photos are spontaneous, unplanned and are  filled with emotion. Also a moment like this can not be replicated or duplicated. This is why I was so I was eager to comply.

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Having not seen Vinessa in her dress, or how she would wear her hair, what pair of the hundred  pairs of shoes she had bought and returned would she be wearing….I was waiting for the whole picture to come together and even though I am a huge “spoiler alert” I didn’t want to ruin this one as I was holding it close to my heart especially knowing that it would be one of the most memorable memories…of our lives together.first_look_wedding_photos_nicole_caldwell_surf_and_sand_resort0007

Emotions  are sometimes very  unpredictable, this I know. I may not cry often or for no reason. If I do, it’s for a pretty good reason and most times it’s that Sarah McLaughlin abused animal commercial. It just breaks my heart. But I knew when I would see Vinessa in her dress, hair, bouquet in hand that I would be very emotional and may even cry, a lot. Or uncontrollably. And that is what I did. simply put…I cried because she was just beautiful and words could not describe.  Vinessa just had the beauty of a goddess  sitting there in the courtyard on the bench, glistening! With her angel-like personality and demeanor, I could not believe that I was about to marry this warm and beautiful woman. I felt so lucky to be the one that she had chosen to be with. Yes, it was a great moment!


I wanted those emotions and images to be captured in a private, secluded, in an intimate setting as they were.    I would not have done it any other way. And yes, I recommend the first look shoot to everyone  who wants to capture those moments, emotions, feelings, those tears, the weakness in your knees, the butterflies in the stomach in a way that will be kept close to your hearts and forever, every time you “look into the photo”!


From The Bride:

Q. What made you decide to do the first look?
A. I wanted to do the first look because I wanted to have this moment with my soon to be husband so that we could share and enjoy each other privately. It provides an intimate moment that we can freely respond to each other physically and emotionally that we would not have had during the ceremony. Sometimes we try to hold our emotions in when we are in front of people and by doing the first look we don’t have to worry about that. It provides us with a memory that we can always remember and share together for the rest of our lives. It’s OUR moment together.
Q. What were you thinking before, during and after?
A.     I was nervous and excited before the first look. Nervous to see him and what his reaction would be. Excited because of the moment and the occasion. I was extremely happy to see him and how handsome he looked. Afterwards I felt happy and not nervous at all for the ceremony.
Q. Are you happy you chose to do the first look?
A. I’m happy that we did the first look because now we have an intimate moment during our wedding that we can always look back upon. The day of the wedding can be so rushed and full of activity that we don’t get time to relax and enjoy each other until it’s all over. It also helped ease some of the nervousness before the ceremony and made me more happy and joyful for the rest of the day.


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Photographed by  Nicole Caldwell  at the Surf and Sand resort in Laguna Beach.