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Noel + Kristine | Baguio Wedding

And sometimes
you find yourself
back where you started,
but stronger and softer
all at once.
Swim inside the ocean of tenderness,
yet build boundaries
on the sand.
An open heart is
a paradise to protect.
- Victoria Erickson

~

Location: Calasiao, Pangasinan, Philippines

Jimrey + Jaja | Pangasinan Wedding

It can never be said enough: weddings are a celebration of love. The happy couple, the supportive guests, the beautiful venue. All elements conspire to usher such a memory-etching event. Yet it begs the question - why a celebration? The couple could simply sign a contract and still get married anyway. Simple. Weddings are a testament that love is still possible. The Bible foretold that today in the last days, “the love of the greater number will grow cold.” (Matt. 24:12) We see evidence of this everywhere. Yet inspite all these odds, still, two people found each other, cherished and trusted, each other and fell in love. And weddings are a cultivation of that concept. That no matter how loveless this world comes to be, as long as there are hearts that hope, strong and inextinguishable love is still possible.

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Location: Naga, Camarines Sur, Philippines

Wilson + Lalaine | Naga Wedding

What can I say? This wedding took us on another incredible journey. We had to do a 10 hour land trip from Manila to Naga City, shoot the whole day, and then go on another 10 hour drive right after the reception to get back to Manila and arrive just in time for the next day’s wedding. Truth is that this kind of schedule isn’t something that’s new to our team. Yes tiring, some might say, but it really doesn’t matter if you just remember the responsibility that your brothers actually entrusted you the privilege to document a very important day in their lives. Now its something that’s been said time and again, but that really is the only underlying purpose that will drive you when you’re dog tired even before the day starts. Yes, its hard to think creatively when you have almost zero sleep, but when you shoot a wedding like this that’s already teeming with happiness and love, in a way its a relief, for you really don’t have to hustle to create a fancy photo anymore. All you have to do is click the shutter and you’ve got memories people will cherish for a lifetime. Want to know what i'm talking about? Check out this full feature from Wilson & Lalaine’s wedding right here. 

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Location: Infanta, Quezon, Philippines

Dennis + Joyce | Engagement

I hear galaxies screaming
Singing their dreams
They tell me stories
Of how they long to be
Transformed from stardust

Into you & me

They dreamt of us dreaming of them
We dream reality

~

Location: Tacloban City, Leyte, Philippines

Jahaziel + Abegail | Tacloban Wedding

Tacloban was my birthplace. During my childhood days in Leyte we visit this city maybe once or twice every few months. When people ask me where I was born and I tell them this city’s name, no one really knows. It is a city that's almost completely incognito to everyone. That was until November 2013. Typhoon Haiyan. The whole world saw what happened. Suddenly, it became a city that everyone knows. For a time, Tacloban was the center of the world. 

Fast forward 3 years, and here we are, back to my birthplace, this time to cover my childhood friend Jahaziel’s wedding. The city has recovered from the catastrophe, and as expected, the brothers welcomed us warmly, accommodated us generously. Then as we go on and meet more of our brothers and sisters there, we began to slowly unravel the experiences they had during the typhoon. We tried to avoid it since we know it is full of painful memories, but I think most of them recovered enough that these stories were merely stories told over dinner. As we hear these stories straight from the mouths of those who experienced it first hand, it was almost a surreal retelling of a movie. Some of them were almost hard to believe, a reality almost impossible to fathom. Yet the grim truth is that these stories are hard facts, and it is painful to think that our brothers had to go through these hardships. 

And yet, like a sunbeam through a thunderstorm, there’s a beautiful lesson we took home from their experiences. First is that Jehovah truly (and when I say truly it is TRULY) helps those of his servants who are in need. We don’t need to experience a super typhoon to realize that God’s hands are never too short to help us in any trial we may face. And second, is that the bond we share as Christian brothers and sisters would be more than enough to keep us going through any difficulties. In times of distress where other people scatter and leave others behind, our brothers stand hand in hand, ready to face the challenge head on. 

Yes, we went here for work, to cover a wedding, but we went home carrying more than pretty pictures. Most importantly, through the brothers and sisters we met in Tacloban, we went home with renewed faith and trust in Jehovah.

A big shoutout to the Rodado and Pacurib family for accommodating us generously through our stay. You not only fed our stomachs, but you also warmly catered for our hearts.

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Location: Quezon City, Metro Manila, Philippines

Von + Alma | Wedding

I trust you, because
I fall asleep in your arms
While your amazing voice sweeps over my life

I like you, because
I can tell you eveything
Without any fear about what it may cause

I'm laughing with you, because
Your humour is just as great
As your abillity to be serious

I think of you, because
You tell me what you really think
About everything I tell you

You make me smile
Every moment that I'm with you
That's why I love you

~

Location: Pasig, Metro Manila, Philippines

Erkki + Ida | Wedding

All people understand the power of the still image to capture emotions and preserve memories. Some events though only happen once in a lifetime, and photographers of all people understand the weight of that responsibility, that vow to document those important never to happen again moments in their client’s lives. So when Erkki, a photographer himself, asked me to cover his wedding for him through photos, I felt honored and humbled at the same time. I felt honored for the most part because a person who shares the same passion on the craft of photography has trusted me enough with this crucial task of covering his wedding day, truly a once in a lifetime event. Being a photographer’s photographer isn’t a title you get to helm everyday and it truly was an awesome privilege. At the same time I was humbled because I know that I am not the best person for this job. Even if I wanted to deliver the ultimate best output for them, I know that someone out there can surely do it better than me. But as storytellers, we make do with what we are handed with, and for Erkki and Ida’s wedding, it was a one in a million kind of story to tell, for it was theirs. I tried to keep these photos simple and straightforward, focusing on emotions rather than gimmicks, just like how a fellow storyteller would like it! So I hope you enjoy my take on their wedding day the same way I enjoyed spending it with them!

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Noel + Kristine | Baguio Engagement

This fleeting moment I seize with care,
For here I have discovered a feeling so rare
The scent that you leave as you walk by
Darling all I can think of is you and I
With your head on my shoulder,
My world is complete
A happiness that you give
Of which I can never be replete
And with hope in my mind
Of the beautiful kind,
I savour every single second that passes by.

~

Location: Dipolog City, Zamboanga del Norte, Philippines

James + Kathy | Dipolog Wedding

Weddings only happen once in a lifetime. But as photographers, our job is to actually bear witness to a lot of weddings. Although each wedding we go to are unique and special by themselves, we are merely observers, outsiders if you may, to this intimate affair especially between the couple, their family, and their friends. Sometimes, though, events take a unique turn. Sometimes, the story being told is ours. This wedding we feature today is one such wedding, for this here is my best friend’s wedding. I’ve known James, the groom, for a long time. Through thick and thin, wet and dry, I can say that this man is someone really close to my heart. My words cannot truly express the happiness I have of witnessing him get married to the love of his life, Kathy. The reality that I am actually covering my best friend’s wedding didn’t really sink in to me for the most part of the day. It all seemed kind of surreal that this person is actually turning the page into a new chapter of his life. It was not until the couple’s portrait after the ceremony that reality really struck me. After doing so many weddings in the past, for the first time, my hands were actually shaking, and I was teary eyed as I try to pose them for the portrait. I actually hate having a camera on my face all the time, but this time I was actually thankful for it. As I take their first portrait as husband and wife, that right there is a moment I will cherish my entire life. Another really special thing that happened on this wedding is the people that I worked with to cover it. Seeing these really talented and passionate people come together once again to create art and share their vision is something I genuinely consider momentous. Being able to be part of the team and work with them once more is an awesome privilege. I’m excitedly looking forward to the next reunion! Also a big shoutout to the Machutes Family for taking care of us (very well) for the whole duration of our stay! The unlimited Lechon is very much appreciated! Haha. So without further ado, here we present you James and Kathy’s wedding day!

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Jayson + Andrea | Wedding

Burdened by the fact that weddings are a once in a lifetime event, couples looking to get married have the tendency to spend too much precious time and money on unnecessary details. Lavish invitations, intricate bouquets. Overfancy jewelry and expensive shoes. Believing that these details would make their big day extra special. But really, what makes  a wedding special? Weddings are a celebration of love. And a celebration wouldn’t be complete without the people who took their time and made effort to show support for the couple. Indeed, at the heart of every successful wedding are the people who made a concerted effort to make the wedding possible. Of course, wedding details like rings and bouquets also have their importance. Take Jayson and Andrea’s wedding as an example. From the classic color theme to the hand-drawn invitations, their simple yet personalised approach to their wedding details produced timeless artifacts adding to the specialness of their wedding day. So couples, always keep in mind, the cake may be fancy but its your friends all around you that truly matters! (1 Cor. 16:17, 18, Prov. 17:17)

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Location: Sampaloc Rd, Tanay, Rizal, Philippines

Jerick + Sienna | Engagement

Faster than a shooting star
Baby you stole my heart
I never want it back
I never thought it'd be like this
So surprised by your kiss
I didn't have time to react
When you’re lost in love
You never want to find your way out.
When you’re lost in love
You never want to be found.

~

Location: Lingayen, Pangasinan, Philippines

Jimrey + Jaja | Pangasinan Engagement

Show me one shining star I'll show you the sky
Bring all your old scars and I'll kiss them goodbye
Will you show me where to start will you show me where to stand
Oh for one last time give me your heart
And I'll be your man.

~

Location: Marikina, Metro Manila, Philippines

Mark + Melissa | Wedding

It is often said that love conquers all. And while it is a very powerful sentence, it is also very easy to take it lightly. I even saw that sentence used for a detergent commercial. But really, what is the real meaning of love conquering all? Interestingly, the Bible through the Apostle Paul talks about “a surpassing way.” Illustrating what he meant, he enumerates that no matter what great things one accomplishes in life, without love, it would all amount to nothing. The same also applies for relationships. Couples can face and actually solve great problems together in life. But without love, one giant problem may come and crumble the relationship. What assures a couple that their relationship will stay strong no matter what? Indeed, it is the surpassing way of love. Mark and Melissa have went through a lot in their road to marriage, but they conquered it all. The heartfelt first dance and their solemn promise to one another almost takes us firsthand through the difficult journey they went through. But seeing them there, making their vows to each other once again shows that love indeed is a surpassing way, and that love can, and does conquer all.

~

Location: Ilocos Norte, Philippines

Richard + Princess | Ilocos Norte Engagement

I took your hand and you looked at me
And I realised something that can rather be
From time indefinite an unbeckoned mystery
The answers were here with me apparently

Could it be the wind whispering in my ear?
Or is it this sea churning waves assured and continually?
For the universe’s secret, it decided to keep
That is was you all along love, right here beside me

So now as we hold hands, my knees become frail
I now know the answer from what was once a telltale
It didn’t seem possible that I have found this holy grail
Truly, we share nothing less than a love on an epic scale.

~

Location: Tanauan, Batangas, Philippines

Elmer + Kim | Batangas Wedding

Elmer and Kim are very hands on with what they do. Even at the very morning of their wedding day, they were still busy going to and fro, arranging things themselves. Elmer had almost zero sleep having just arrived from purchasing flowers from Manila, which is about 60km away from their venue. Kim was also busy making sure everything was set at the venue and around town.  Even though unexpected events led to their last minute change of venue, their hard work along with the help of all the equally hardworking brothers and sisters from their congregations, their specia  day was a beautiful and solemn garden wedding. It was blazing hot the whole morning but during the ceremony, we were helped by a cool breeze from the rain shower outside, which happened to stop just in time for their portrait session! Truly, these things may be little, but they are the details that prove how Jehovah truly blesses those who are rightly disposed towards him!

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