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Last night while surfing the web, Amelia ran into this little article on MSN’s home page. I thought it was a nice bit of information to consider while planning your wedding. The article was written by the Knot.

Wedding Guests’ Secret Gripes

You’ve been to a few weddings yourself, so you know there are just some things that can rub you the wrong way. Here are a few helpful reminders about what guests can’t stand.

You may think your wedding is all about you and your groom (or maybe just you) but, hello, you’re hosting a party! If your guests are miserable, your wedding will be remembered for all the wrong reasons. So we talked to dozens of frequent wedding guests — from always-a-bridesmaids to recent brides to guys in their 20s and 30s — to find out what they hated about the events they’ve attended. We’ve kept the guests’ names secret just in case they’re coming to your wedding!

Your Timing Stinks

Huge time gaps between the ceremony and the reception — the ones where the ceremony starts at noon, but the party isn’t until 7 p.m. — are annoying because you’re often leaving us in the middle of nowhere with absolutely nothing to do. We don’t want to kill time at a restaurant because we’re hoping you’ll feed us well at your reception. And there’s only so much lingering we can do at a coffee shop or a bookstore … in our dressy clothes! We’d much rather head straight to the party after the “I dos.”

You Picked a Bad Day

We’ve had weddings on every holiday, from Mother’s Day to Super Bowl Sunday (yes, that counts as a holiday). You must realize that we’d rather be with our moms or watching the game instead of going to your wedding on those days. And please don’t ruin our holiday weekends. We get it; you can save a bundle if you get hitched on the Sunday before Memorial Day, but maybe we’d like to take our vacations then. If nothing else, please don’t get married on some random Tuesday night. That means we have to take off two days from work just to go! Let us use our vacation days for vacations.

You’re Boring Us

The ceremony may be the most important part of the day to you, but the reception is what we’re really looking forward to. When it takes forever to get dinner served, each speech is 25 minutes long, and you play a string of songs that are all inside jokes with the same group of friends, there isn’t much time for getting our groove on. Uh, and if the band’s so bad that no one’s dancing — including you and your groom — we just think, Why are we even here? Showing us a really good time is the least that you can do to thank us for giving up our free day, traveling, and getting you an expensive gift.

The Food Isn’t Great

Why would you bother spending thousands on your flowers if your food is going to taste terrible? We want a delicious meal way more than we want pretty centerpieces. You don’t know this, but we actually think of that $200 gift as a contribution to a great meal. If it’s not as good as something we’d have at a restaurant, we’re going to be disappointed. Even if the food is tasty, don’t make us go hungry. We don’t need an eight-course meal, but we don’t want to have to push through other guests just to get to the tiny hors d’oeuvres you’re calling dinner.

You Make Us Pay?!

Treat your guests like guests; don’t make us bring our wallets whenever we want a drink! When you have more than 300 guests and a cash bar, we wish that you would’ve just cut the list and paid for our drinks instead. How exactly are we supposed to feel when we paid for flights, a rental car, a hotel room, and a gift, and then you make us pay at the bar? So not cool.

You Sat Us Here

We want to have fun at your wedding, believe us, but it’s pretty tricky when you seat us right in front of giant speakers. We won’t be able to talk to anyone at our tables or enjoy our dinner if you’re blowing out our eardrums. Before you book your venue, make sure there’s enough space for tables without having to make us sit in the DJ’s lap. And don’t make us suffer in the heat. If you’re having a summer wedding, do it somewhere with air conditioning!

Also, if you want to be outdoors, don’t make us rough it: Walking around in the mud, swatting bugs, or using porta-potties is even less fun in formal attire. And please give us plenty of places to sit. Cocktail hours are great, but it’s pretty tough to balance our plates, drinks, and purses while standing — in heels no less!

You Don’t Invite a Plus-One

Nothing reminds us of our dating status like a wedding. No need to rub it in our faces with even more reminders. The garter and bouquet tosses are like saying, “Hey, look at them. They’re single!” Could you blame us if we hide in the bathroom as soon as the DJ announces it? And, come on, even if they did honestly predict we’d be the next to marry, do we really want some cheesy guy slipping garters up our legs? Of course, we’d prefer to be invited with a date, but we get why you may not be able to give us that, especially if we’ll know lots of other people there. But if everyone we know is making out with their significant other all night, we’re going to be pissed that you couldn’t include one extra person to make us feel a little more comfortable.

You Put Us to Work

We know we’ll have to help out with some tasks when we agree to be in the bridal party, but it’s insulting when you consider a task like manning the guest book table an honor. We’d rather just be a regular guest at the wedding than have some silly duty like that. At the very least, give us a heads up if you’ll need our help. Don’t spring flower girl babysitting duties on us minutes before the reception.

You Don’t Say Thank You

It’s frustrating when we fly all the way to your wedding and you don’t take the time to thank us for making the trip. Even if we haven’t come a long way, make an effort to thank us for coming anyway. We know it’s hard to talk to every guest at the wedding, but that’s why, at the very least, we better get a thank-you card from you when you get back from your honeymoon!




Thank you for visiting My Wedding photography blog.

Feel Free to visit my portfolio.

Contact me. (800) 497-1815

Miguel Pola Photographers | Miguel Pola Photographers Blog | Orange County Wedding Photography | Los Angeles Wedding Photography | Wedding Photographers | Orange County Family Photographer | Los Angeles Family Photographer

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Project Cuddle has been a non profit organization that I’ve been working with for the passed 8 years.  Project Cuddle represents a small group of people devoted to preventing the abandonment of unwanted babies throughout the nation. In 1996, Debbe Magnusen started Project Cuddle in her garage. Over the past 15 years Debbe has helped save just under 700 babies by providing free care and protection for the expecting mothers. With the help of Oprah, Ellen, and several television networks word about Project Cuddle is spreading and more babies are being saved from abandonment and many times, certain death.This year they had a fundraiser dinner at the Anaheim White House. The dinner was hosted by Mr John Stamos and feature Chef Bruno Serrato. This years event was great Images were published in the Modern Luxury Riviera Magazine.  Here are some of the images of the great evening.

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Found this on another photographers site Great article!… So true! Great article written by Grant & Deb. Thanks for such a real article. Miguel

So you’re meeting your prospective wedding photographer for the first time. You found them on a Google search, and their site seems nice enough. But how do you really know they are the best for you?

The easiest answer is also the most ridiculous; in 30 initial minutes you can’t. BUT … there are a few things you can look for to become more comfortable with your decision.

1. Relationship – Relationship – Relationship

The absolute most important aspect to you reaping the results you desire from your final wedding photography is that you fall in LOVE with your wedding photographer(s). And by LOVE I don’t mean you’d ebay your rings, cancel your date and marry them – but I do mean you feel so comfortable that you’d be able to brag about them to your closest friends or have them over for dinner at your house.

A wedding photographer worth hiring doesn’t take pictures, and that sounds totally weird, I know. A great wedding photographer isn’t really a photographer at all but an artist who uses a camera and lens to paint and CAPTURE MOMENTS in digital files filled with emotion and passion. Their images – each and every one – CAPTURE a narrative or story that with one glance creates an emotion from the viewer; namely you. ANYBODY can take a picture, especially with the advances in today’s geeky low-priced digital cameras. But only true wedding photography ARTISTS can capture your story with passion and emotion.

Someone who is bestowed such a precious and significant task as being your ONLY wedding photographer must be someone you absolutely love and admire. In fact, a true wedding photography artist will almost always be easy to be comfortable with because they themselves are depending on building a strong relationship with you so they may better understand what is important to your final outcome.

2. Passion

Ask your prospective wedding photographer if they take their cameras with them to family birthday parties or if they shoot pictures of their niece’s soccer games. Only someone passionate about their craft integrates that passion into their lives – and a great wedding photography artist always integrates their passion into their lives.

When you’re sitting across the table from them, how do they make you feel? Are you getting excited about your day as they talk about their involvement? When they talk about their product, do they exhibit a kind of giddiness or are they just selling? What adjective comes to your mind to describe them if you were asked 5 minutes after you’ve left the appointment?

Passion HAS to at least be a likely adjective you could choose. If not? Run – do not walk – to the next photographer.

You see – any great wedding photography artist is in the “game” for more than just the coin. They are always – and I mean always – looking to become your wedding photographer because they are passionate about painting your special story with the lenses of their camera that tell the story through fine art photography. In fact, a passionate wedding photography artist will always be a remarkable artist.

3. No new stress – please!

The wedding photographer sitting across the table from you has no idea what your plans are for your upcoming fairy-tale day. In fact, just because they’ve taken pictures for hundreds of brides before you, there are no other weddings even close in style or substance as yours, period.

If your prospective wedding photographer isn’t asking the right questions of you, questions pertaining to your day, how YOU plan it to unfold, how many bridesmaids, groomsmen, the venue, is there going to be dancing, will your dad walk you down the aisle, who your maid-of-honor is and who she is to you …

If they are insisting on showing you their previous work, and how awesome they are, and who they’ve photographed before ever asking about how YOU envision your day? RUN – do not walk – to the next prospective photographer.

The most counter-productive and stressful situation is to have your wedding photographer not clearly understand your time line. And the best scenario in this situation is to have a needy, whiney, and question ridden person running around taking pictures creating more stress. The worst scenario? They don’t ask and subsequently don’t GET the pictures you envisioned. In either scenario? Stress and disaster.

Actually, the absolute BEST scenario is a wedding photographer who sits across the table and interviews YOU. That’s right, you’ve invited them to the table to choose them – but what you really want is someone who wants to work with you because you both click. Someone who asks you a bunch of questions, and diligently writes down YOUR answers about YOUR day as they interview YOU. Why? Because when they truly understand YOUR day, and how it will unfold, you have found someone who doesn’t need to create stress on your day (or before), you’ve found someone capable of discovering and understanding what you want prior to your day. Someone who can click with you (and hopefully – FOR you – wink).

4. Show me your stuff

More than likely, you’ve seen a lot of your prospective wedding photographer’s work (and probably their best work) from their web site. And having a look at an album or prints or canvas or … is a good thing too. But understand this, nothing they show you across the table is going to be what you get – ever. You are seeing a compilation of work from perhaps their best work, which is understandable. But even on a perfect day, no two weddings are the same, nor are any two wedding albums, or prints, or … the same.

Obviously your wedding photographer needs to be able to nail their focus, and exposures, and all of those technical photography details in order to even be considered. But, going back to the number one “must” – other bride’s relationships with your photographer have got to be great.

Ask your potential wedding photographer to give you a couple of brides you can contact. And when they provide those names, call those brides and ask one question; “What do you remember most about Photographer xx?” That’s it! You’ll get the whole story from that one question. And the best part? You’ll also get your answer overall from that question.

5. It’s gotta be fun

Ask the wedding photographer this question; “So what do you do for fun?” Not that you need to care WHAT they do for fun – but you do care if they do anything that IS FUN.

Just because your wedding photographer will be working as a “vendor” on your awesome day does NOT mean they have to portray it as work. They have to have fun at it – and you’ve got to have fun at it – and that does NOT mean it’s up to you to make it fun. THEY have to make it fun – the whole day. It may be 98 degrees in the shade or 2 below zero – but THEY have to be able to roll with the punches or change direction at any given time and still make it fun and stress-free for your entire party.

And there is really no way to know if that person you just met is that person other than to know they know how to have fun on their own, hence “So what do you do for fun?”

Fun = happy. Stress = ugly. Which do you choose?

My best friend Deb and I specialize in being a husband and wife Wedding Photography Artist team. You can view more of our work and our galleries at our Wedding Photography Artist Site at or you can stay up to date with us on our BLOG at


Thank you for visiting My Wedding photography blog.

Feel Free to visit my portfolio.

Contact me. (800) 497-1815

Miguel Pola Photographers | Miguel Pola Photographers Blog | Orange County Wedding Photography | Los Angeles Wedding Photography | Wedding Photographers | Orange County Family Photographer | Los Angeles Family Photographer



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Ok, so now that your engaged, Now what?  Where do I start…  After the dust settles from the excitement of your engagement. Most couples try to figure out where to start with their planning endeavors. The majority of the time the first thing that is thought about is “Where should we get married?” Once that is taken care of, usually the next step is to start shopping for your photographer.  Lately, with the increase of quality that digital cameras have to offer, you are finding more and more people calling themselves “Professional Photographers”.  We would like to give you a few tips on what to look for when you are soliciting Wedding Photographers.

  1. The Photographer’s Visual Perspective: It is sometimes referred to as the photographer’s eye.  Here is where you need to take notice to what the photographer sees during the day of events. How do these images make you feel? Are they unique or do they look like every other photographer’s work you’ve looked at. Do they look extremely staged? Does the bride and groom look uncomfortable? Does they look like they are having fun?  Are they romantic enough for you?  Are they too riske for you? Do they tell a story?  Finally, which photographer’s work puts a smile on your face and do you feel connected to.
  2. The Photographer’s Experience: In my opinion, experience is a big factor.  It’s important that the photographer that you are gravitating to has experience dealing with the day’s hectic people and schedule. Don’t base your choices on costs.  Wedding days consist of lots of emotions, personalities, and sometimes egos.  The question you should ask yourself is “Does this photographer have what it takes to deal with my families diverse dynamics?”  It’s important for a wedding photographer to be “Chameleon Like” to fit in with the mother of the groom that can’t stand the new wife…   Or the overly eager wedding coordinator that has her job to do. Even your crazy uncle Leo who decides that the line at the appetizer bar is more important than the family photos that he’s supposed to be in. With experience comes patients and an understanding of what a client’s needs are. We are contacted 6-8 times a year to create an album for clients who’s photographer has either gone out of business or just handed them a disc of images. This is a dis-service. It is important that your photographer has the ability to create these memories for you to enjoy with your family.
  3. The ole’ Switch-e-roo.  Now that you’ve decided on what studio will be photographing your wedding. Be sure to get in writing that the photographer you chose (hired) will be the photographer that will show up to your wedding.  Some companies offer multiple shooters to choose from. Others offer services and often double, and even triple book weddings on any given day. Sending any photographer to cover your event. Make sure that the photographer that you interviewed and who’s work you fell in love with, will be the same photographer that will photograph your wedding.

Finally, A photographer with an easy going personality with experience that is flexible enough to fulfill your needs would be your best choice. Ultimately, you should love their photography and there products that they have to offer. Great photography + great personality+ great products  + awesome experience = Happy Clients (Bride & Groom)

These are just a few tips to help you choose the right wedding photographer f0r you. We hope that this article was helpful for you while you are planning your beautiful wedding.  I wrote this article to share an insider’s point of view.  It’s through experience and having had the privilege of photographing hundreds of weddings  that I consider myself both an expert on wedding photography and an expert wedding photographer.  I really hope that you’ve found this article useful in your search to get the best wedding images from your wedding photographer.

If you have any questions about our wedding photography, Please contact us at the links below. Feel free to share this post on your facebook page by clicking the share button below.

Written By Miguel Pola

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Every once in a while I run into a great article of information. My buddy Diana Romero of Ah Le Party Wedding & Event Planning wrote a nice little article on tips for your guest list. You can read it here or visit her blog to read it.  Thanks Diana for the wonderful bits of info you provide for brides. We at Miguel Pola Photographers would like to wish all the newly engaged couples who got engaged of the Holidays the Warmest of Congratulations on your engagement.  Be sure to browse our Wedding portfolio to see some of our amazing couples.



10 Great Guest List Tips

1. Create a guest total depending on your venue limitations and budget
2. Create an A and B list with the A list having the total guest count number
3.  If one side is paying for the wedding such as the Father of the Bride, please set a limit on their list
4.  It is appropriate to give both families the same limit on their lists
4. It isn’t necessary to invite all of your co-workers.  Only invite co-workers if you associate with them outside of the office
5.  Mail out your invitations to your A list ten weeks before the wedding
6.  Write the names of who is invited on the envelope to clarify who is invited (for example just the parents names if children are not included)
7.  As you receive regrets from your A list guests, begin sending out invitations to your B list
8.  Children?  Inviting children costs less as a whole since they eat less and take up less space
9.  If you are inviting single friends keep in mind that if they have a significant other, it is appropriate to invite the significant other
10.If you receive RSVP cards with a number higher than invited, kindly inform the guests that there are venue limitations

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