Michelle & Bryan’s Memory Garden Monterey wedding

Michelle & Bryan's Memory Garden Monterey wedding

Michelle & Bryan got married in Memory Garden in the heart of Old Monterey on a Friday the 13th that was anything but unlucky.

Sometimes I struggle with what to write in these blog posts — it’s hard to sum up an entire wedding day in a few paragraphs. I end up talking about how great the weather was, or how good everyone looked, but I could say those things about lots of weddings. (I could certainly say it about this one.) But those reflections never really get at what makes a wedding special.

The truth is, a wedding day is a series of moments, an unfolding set of events that when added together make up a couple’s experience of their wedding. Michelle and Bryan had a series of events that was about as close to perfect as it’s possible to get. From the thoughtful gifts they gave each other at the beginning of the day, to the priceless look on Bryan’s face when he saw Michelle in her dress for the first time, to the the ceremony and vows, the dinner and dancing, the speeches and socializing, all the way through to the post-wedding drinks at a nearby British pub. All of it was just perfect.

From my perspective as a photographer, I was thrilled that Michelle and Bryan worked out a schedule that allowed a good amount of time for photos before the wedding, and a chunk of time after as well. I was also thrilled that their decorations were so gorgeous and everything fit together so well inside Memory Garden. I’ve shot a number of weddings there and I never tire of how the lights in the trees look against the night sky as the sun sets. Such a fantastic venue, and so close to all the best photo locations that Monterey has to offer.

Michelle & Bryan’s Memory Garden Monterey wedding was also lucky enough to have two of the best kid dancers I’ve ever seen grace a dance floor. These two well-dressed young brothers (the ring bearers) had a set of moves so astonishing (slide through the legs! lay on the floor! freeze in a disco pose!) that everyone was laughing and pointing and dancing along with them. It’s these kinds of unexpected elements that make weddings so fun.

Oh, and did I mentioned that there was a self-serve Guinness station? Genius.

I had invaluable help with Michelle and Bryan’s wedding from my friend and colleague Nic Coury, who provided many of the photos of Bryan and his guys getting ready, as well as secondary angles of the ceremony and reception.

My favorite photos from Michelle & Bryan’s Memory Garden Monterey wedding are in the gallery below:

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