Tim and Brittany's San Diego Backyard Wedding

When Brittany and Tim got engaged in early 2017, they both knew that, between switching careers, moving, and saving for a house, they wouldn't have time to put together something special for them and their guests. That is why Brittany's mother, Dolores, took it upon herself  and put her heart and soul into making this wedding everything that the couple could ever want.

To save money, Dolores, who owns a gorgeous Spanish-styled home in San Diego, suggested that they have the wedding at her home to cut costs. The mother and daughter created a Pinterest board to help them brainstorm, collect and pin ideas, themes and decor that they could get inspiration from to complement her mother’s home and make it pop. She has a keen eye for staging a room, something she gained from when she used to flip homes before the 2009 economic crash. "I am a very eclectic person, so I gave Dolores full control to make sure nothing clashed on my big day. She was with me every step of the way!" Brittany told me when I was talking to her about the inspiration behind her day. "She also was the one who picked out my wedding dress! Sometimes your mother really does know best!"

Because family and friends are such a big part of who Brittany and Tim are, they wanted to have their wedding feel like a big family dinner. Tim's father built four long, redwood picnic tables that fit elegantly in the backyard. (Seriously, he built those tables FROM SCRATCH.) Throughout the year, Dolores thrifted for every single decoration, plate, silverware, etc. She has such an eye for finding unique items and finding a beautiful purpose for them – Tiffany lamps for centerpieces in tables, dinner-wear with different colored themes, and an assortment of candlesticks and taper candles. It was all so unique and yet still eclectic like Brittany's personality.

This backyard wedding put Pinterest to shame, so I wanted to heavily photograph the details to show off the style of the wedding and how it complimented the house. It all flowed together so eloquently and made me feel like I was attending an epic tea party in Mexico City or Tulum, Mexico.

For the ceremony, they tied the knot in an area of the home with the most epic colors and bright light. There were tears of happiness as they said their vows, only to be broken by laughter as the family dog made their way down the aisle to play with the couple during their most intimate moment. The pictures speak for themselves when I tell you it was the most beautiful ceremony with compliments of the most loving dog.

The drinks, decorations, and the epic table scheme was complimented by a taco truck in the backyard where we had the most amazing tacos I have ever had. It was taco truck etiquette so we all just walked up and got our own tacos. "Puede tener cuatro tacos con pollo, " I said to the truck owners who gave me the most beautiful plate of tacos, rice, and guacamole. After everyone was served, they really stole the show when they started passing out churros in a cup with ice cream and sweet chili powder on the rim. Their bartender, a martial-arts opponent bag dressed up in Hispanic garb, had a sign next to him reading, "This is Manny. A terrible bartender but a great listener. Please help yourself!" (That was so clever that I was cry-laughing at that.)

The rest of the night was full of fun and often meaningful speeches, including some that made me hide my tears behind my camera. You could tell that everyone was just so happy these two wonderful people were finally married. After speeches, the DJ started playing Freaky Friday by Chris Brown and Lil Dicky.  Ironically, this was a song we were blasting earlier in the morning while getting ready. Everyone rushed to the dance floor and did all these choreographed moves that made my reception photos awesome as hell. The party never fizzled out as time went on, even the older guests were on the dance floor busting a move. That was sometimes a hilarious sight to see, but also just proof the crowd was just as good as the wedding. Once the wedding party finally came to an end, everyone made a tunnel around the couple with rice in hand to send off Brittany and Tim to their honeymoon.

I wanted these photos to tell a story and also show the emotion of the day. That's why my favorite images are the ones where Brittany is laughing the hardest and when someone was pumped about the churros. I tried shooting things with new perspectives and incorporating new kinds of editing to make the colors pop. When I was getting ready to pack up, Brittany told me about her mother, "Planning this wedding filled her heart with great purpose. To be honest, my mother was the greatest inspiration for this wedding."

*Commence Tears* The End