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Puerto Rico has lots to offer anyone who is planning a destination wedding. For one, you or your guests do not need US Passports to travel there from the US. They have some of the most amazing beaches in the world. They also have many five star resorts that offer great service and exceptional hospitality. So If your thinking of having that beautiful destination wedding on the beach with your closest family and friends why not make it in Puerto Rico.

If you are a Southern California Bride and you are looking to have a Puerto Rico Destination Wedding we are you studio. See, there are some advantages of hiring our studio for your Puerto Rico Destination wedding needs. Some of them being very simple. I speak spanish fluently. So I can communicate all your venue personnel. If your family is from Puerto Rico I’ll fit right in, giving your crazy uncle a hard time and having a great time with your family and friends.

You will find it easy to fulfill all your needs here at our Orange County studio. After your wedding,  you will be able to visit with us in our studio to proof your albums and any other products that may be in your package. You won’t have to wait and wonder when and if your product and service will meet your standards. Our wedding studio is one of Orange County’s sought after wedding photography studios. Even if you on the east coast we would still be able to proof your products and video chat online as we get to know each other. My laid back, fun personality allows the two of you to feel comfortable in front of the camera. Which makes capturing amazing images of you and your handsome / beautiful fiance, while in Puerto Rico, effortless. While planning your Puerto Rico Destination wedding, you may find it hard to coordinate with all of your vendors that are in Puerto Rico. With our studio, you will find it easy to make your photography plans a reality. Our new online booking system allows you to add what ever your heart desires to your package. With secure online payments made easy.

Puerto Rico Destination Wedding Photography | Orange County Wedding Photographers

While looking through a magazine (Bienvenidos) my brother brought back from the Island. I ran into a great article of information on Marriage requirements in Puerto Rico.  I was able gather the information just for you.

I hope that it is useful for you in your planning…

Marriage Requirements in Puerto Rico

Puerto Rico has so much to see and do that couples opting to marry on this beautiful Caribbean island will be tempted to spend their honeymoon here, too. But before you can say “I Do” in this tropical haven there are a couple of things you should know.

Residency Requirements

To get married in Puerto Rico , you don’t need to be a resident or an American citizen. If either party is a citizen or a resident of a country other than the U.S. a declaration certifying  that he or she is not married must be sworn before a Notary Public or other person authorized to administer paths in that country. This declaration must accompany the application.

Marriage License

A marriage license is required a must be requested in writing via the registry address  below. Both the bride and groom must appear in personal the time of applying for the license. The amount of time needed to complete the license requirements is around two months, so prepare in advance.

Laboratory tests

A medical certificate with a VDRL blood test is crucial for the marriage process.  You can submit a medical certificate from a lab in the state or country you reside  (the test cannot be older than14 days on the the day of your  wedding).

Authentication of documents

A quick visit to the Demographic Registry and $30 worth of license stamps gets your license authenticated.

Identifications

Don’t forget to bring a valid photo identification or your original passports. Non U.S. citizens will need a passport  and  a declaration certifying that he or she are not residents of Puerto Rico, the purpose of the visit is to get married and that he or she will not stay in Puerto Rico longer than the U.S. territory entry states. This declaration must be sworn before a Notary Public or other person authorized to administer thats in that country.

Other Certificates

If you have been divorced or are a widower, please bring the corresponding certificates.

Religious and Civil ceremonies

For your marriage to be legal, it must be performed either by a registered minister, judge or authorized clergyman. Written consent of parents is required where individuals are under 21, but over 16 years of age.

Where to obtain a marriage license

All marriage licenses in Puerto Rico are expedited by the Demographic Registry, and that actually is a one-stop shop. You can contact them by phone or mail regarding any doubts you may have obtaining  your marriage license or certificate. Or download the your marriage license application by clicking here PR Marriage license App

Demographic Registry
P.O. Box 11854
Fernandez Juncos Station
San Juan, PR 00910
Tel (787)767-9120

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The Power of the social Media Facebook, Twitter, and form of social media is crazy.  Last week over twitter I posted a simple question. ” Does anyone Know of a good interior designer in OC?”  I received several responses from friends and colleagues which I expected.  But one that I didn’t expect was a response from and actual Interior Designer.  Her response was simple and to the point.  “@miguelpola I am a local professional interior designer in OC. How can I help?”  We corresponded  via twitter a few times then spoke over the phone a couple of times.  See, my Studio is in need of a little face lift and I initially figured “what the heck I can make a couple of changes here and there and spruce it up a bit.” But then I started to think, “Why don’t I hire a professional to do this?”  Someone who does this this for a living, someone who is passionate about what they do.   In talking to Audra Miller of Audra Miller Interiors, a couple things.  1st she an awesome person. And shes a great listener.  She hears what you want and need.  Super important when your trying to achieve something that will be great for you the client.  If your newly married and you need some great inspiration for your new love nest be sure to hit Audra up.  Let her know that I sent you.  She’ll take great care of you.  :)

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Puerto Rico has lots to offer anyone who is planning a destination wedding. For one, you or your guests do not need US Passports to travel there from the US. They have some of the most amazing beaches in the world. They also have many five star resorts that offer great service and exceptional hospitality. So If your thinking of having that beautiful destination wedding on the beach with your closest family and friends why not make it in Puerto Rico.

Let me introduce myself. My name Is Miguel Pola. I own & operate Miguel Pola Photographers.  I am a Puerto Rican Photographer who lives in Orange County Ca. or Southern Ca. and would love to photograph your Puerto Rico Destination wedding. I am a husband, a father, I am honest, I am easy going, I am funny, I am creative, I am loyal, I am professional, I am hard working, oh yeah… I am a photographer. Here are some of the things I love… I love my family, I love when my girls laugh so hard that they almost loose their breath, I love my wife’s smile, I love my clients, I love my job.

See, there are some advantages of hiring our studio for your Puerto Rico Destination wedding needs. Some of them being very simple. I speak spanish fluently. So I can communicate all your venue personnel. If your family is from Puerto Rico I’ll fit right in, giving your crazy uncle a hard time and having a great time with your family and friends. If you are a bride or groom who lives in Orange County you will find it easy to fulfill all your needs here at our Orange County studio.  After your wedding,  you will be able to visit with us in our studio to proof your albums and any other products that may be in your package. You won’t have to wait and wonder when and if your product and service will meet your standards. Our wedding studio is one of Orange County’s sought after wedding photography studios. Even if you on the east coast we would still be able to proof your products and video chat online as we get to know each other. My laid back, fun personality allows the two of you to feel comfortable in front of the camera. Which makes capturing amazing images of you and your handsome / beautiful fiance, while in Puerto Rico, effortless.  While planning your Puerto Rico Destination wedding, you may find it hard to coordinate with all of your vendors that are in Puerto Rico. With our studio, you will find it easy to make your photography plans come true. Our new online booking system allows you to add what ever your heart desires to your package. With secure online payments made easy.

 Wedding Photography | Orange County Wedding Photographers

If you are interested or planning a Puerto Rico destination wedding, Please feel free to Contact me for details.  (800)497-1815 Toll free WEPA.

If you are a bride planning a Puerto Rico Destination Weddings be sure to check out some of these gorgeous wedding venues that Puerto Rico has to offer.

El San Juan Hotel & Casino, San Juan, is the ultimate in Old World elegance. The vibrant pulse of Puerto Rico beats into the night at the elite San Juan Hotel & Casino. Enjoy the island’s finest white-sand beaches. They offer breath taking settings for a memorable San Juan wedding. One of the oldest grand hotels in Puerto Rico has a unique elegance.

El Conquistador Resort, Fajardo, Puerto Rico, has one of the most spectacular views in Puerto Rico with ultimate luxury. Enjoy peace and tranquility in breath taking surroundings on your wedding day at El Conquistador. Exchange vows at your luxurious Puerto Rico Destination sprawled across a 300 ft overlook where the Atlantic meets the Caribbean Sea. Pledge your love on a white sand beach at sunset.

El Gran Meliá Resort, Rio Grande. Gran Melia Golf Resort Puerto Rico will help you create a unique romantic escape to luxury and romance. The only thing you have to do is relax and make every moment memorable. Gran Meliá Puerto Rico Resort is a bold utopia of tropical flora and fauna, and sophisticated architecture; swallowed by the turquoise waters of the Atlantic.

Ritz-Carlton, San Juan Hotel, Spa & Casino, San Juan. A wedding at the Ritz Carlton San Juan sets a new standard in romantic elegance. It has a glamorous and vintage feel and look to it, with an incredible service and yummy food. You can have your wedding under the gazebo and your reception under the stars right at the beach with a fantastic gourmet BB-Q.

Hotel El Convento, Old San Juan. For a very unique Old World experience there is nothing like Old San Juan. Discover the majestic Old San juan Wedding site for your special day. Right in the middle of Old San Juan with its over 500 years of history, El Convento is located across the second oldest cathedral in the New World, La Catedral de San Juan. Many choose to have their ceremony at the Cathedral and cross the streets to celebrate at El Convento. Featuring sweeping Colonial architecture and elegant design. Beautiful reception rooms in deep colonial woods, black and white floors with big chandeliers.

La Concha, A Renaissance Resort, Condado, is another beautiful location for a Destination Wedding. If your are looking for the grand ballroom elegance experience amidst a modern, fashionable hotel, La Concha is your place. Recently renovated, la Concha has a lot of history & is one of the prominent local & international artist venues.

Castillo Serralles, Ponce. This venue is in my fathers home town and home of the Bomba & Plena. This arquitectural marvel was the residence of the Serralles family, owners of Don Q rum. They have now turned  the sprawling property into a thriving museum and is a very popular and sought after wedding venue. Sitting high above the city of Ponce, this Castle is surrounded by beautiful gardens and an incredible views.

Casa España, San Juan, is one of Puerto Rico’s high society wedding venues. It has an authentic spanish-morish arquitecture that transports you to the colonial times. It was built in 1932 to house a private civic and cultural organization composed of Spanish citizens living in Puerto Rico. This Venue oozes beauty and romance!

 Wedding Photography | Orange County Wedding Photographers

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Recently, one of my photography colleagues,  Greg, posted a link on his twitter acct of a very realistic article that was written by a London Wedding Photographer Randolph Quan. Here it is…

I’m often asked about how much people charge for photography, and then frequently in the context of wedding photography. Honest truth? I don’t really know, but the persistent feeling out there is that wedding photography is really, really expensive.

This is, in fact, true – it ain’t cheap to get your wedding photographed – but have you ever thought about why that might be? I decided to find out, and spoke to Randolph Quan, a London-based wedding photograher.

In Randolph’s own words…

Spring is in full bloom here in the UK, so the hectic summer wedding season is about to arrive. Lately I’ve been getting a lot of couples asking me why wedding photography prices are so expensive. While it may seem like wedding photographers live an amazing life by charging through the roof for a day of work, it’s hardly the case.

It goes without saying that weddings are a costly affair. From the venue to the caterer to the wedding favors, the tab just keeps getting higher, and it often seems that wedding photographers are charging a large chunk of that tab. But have you ever though why wedding photography prices are so high? It’s because of the associated costs of being a wedding photographer.

Being a good photographer is an expensive investment. Sure, you can find cheap wedding photographers out there, but they’re cheap because they’ve possible cut corners on equipment, and insurance. Or they’re just plain stupid (you hired cheap and stupid?) So let’s take a look at what goes into a photographer’s overhead that adds up to the final cost of your wedding photographer.

1. Labor costs. This one is pretty standard across all industries. A photographer’s work doesn’t end when your wedding does. After the 5-10 hours they’ve put in working (on a Saturday, no less) at your nuptials, the photographer spends hours and hours editing your images so you get a wide array of perfect photographs by which to remember your day. Its not uncommon to work a full 3-4 days editing a wedding. Their time is even more valuable when you factor in the limited number of weekends in a year there are for a photographer to work.

2. Staff salaries. If you book a photographer that comes with assistants or second photographers, your cost is going to be higher. In return for getting more images from various places on your day, your photographer is going to have the pay those assistants.

3. Equipment. The pieces of equipment a photographer carries around is not your typical point-and-shoot. High-end lenses and bodies average around £1500 each. Photographers also carry back-up equipment in case their primary equipment fails, which adds to the cost of the wedding photography prices. In case your photographer is living in the Jurassic period and hasn’t switched over to digital (there are a few out there, somewhere), you also have to factor in the cost of film. Good wedding photographers easily can bring over £10,000 worth of equipment to shoot your wedding. Add in the prices of computers and editing programs like photoshop ( you did buy it right?) and costs begin to skyrocket. Luckily, its not always necessary in the UK to own a car so let’s not go there.

4. Insurance. Because cameras and equipment cost so much, photographers are smart to insure them. Just in case your drunk (who your mom insisted on inviting) cousin Jimmy decides he wants to spray champagne all over the wedding photographer’s equipment for a joke.

5. Web site. In this day and age, a photographer has to market himself with a very high-tech, professional Web site, which can cost a lot to design and maintain if the photographer doesn’t have web design skills. Its not unreasonable to spend over £5000 a year on website updates, and online marketing such as the sponsored links on Google.

6. Advertising. In that same vein, photographers also have to spend money on other types of advertising such as ads in the newspaper, business cards and brochures.

7. Photo extras. If you knew how much albums cost you’d have a heart attack. Albums are extraordinarily expensive and are often added into the wedding photography prices. Don’t forget the time it takes to design them as well.

8. Education. The more educated a photographer is, the better techniques and specializations will be used while shooting a wedding. As everything else, that education comes at a cost through instructors, college degrees, extra classes and seminars, etc. Intangibles such as expertise aren’t easy to measure monetarily, although we try!

So while you may be asking, “why does photographer X cost so much more than photographer Y?” the answer might be simple: Photographer X has spent more money developing his or her business into a full-fledged photography service, which ends up costing more money than an inexperienced photographer who moonlights part time on the weekend.

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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?

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