Brian LaBrada Photography »

Growing up, my family owned a 10 acre ranch complete with chicks, chickens, pigs, wild donkeys, llamas (we’re Peruvian), goats, a giant Christmas tree farm, and last but not least, 25 Thoroughbreds we would raise and train for racing. You would think I would have a love for horses and great memories of riding my horse for miles and miles in a romanticized manor. But unfortunately, my experience with our horses was cleaning their pens, balling hay, feeding, and washing them. I once rode a five year old mare bare back for about 10 minutes. I was suppose to be warming her up but she gave me a look while I was putting her bridle on that said “Hey… you gonna get on today? I won’t tell,” and then I swear she smiled at me. I ran her around the corral a couple of times, then I grabbed her my the mane (that I hadn’t yet braided) and hopped on. It was a great 10 minutes, yet kind of painful – bare back riding is not as fun as it sounds.:)

Although I didn’t really get to ride them, I did get to go to the race track to see them run and man did I love it, I still go now any chance I get. My favorite part would be in the winner’s circle waiting for our picture to be taken. The horses would still be cooling down from the race and I would place my hand right above one of the front legs and I could feel their hearts pumping so hard still. I could literally feel my hand being pushed away from the force of the heart beat.

A few weeks ago I went out to Santa Anita Park in Arcadia, CA to watch the races. It was a great day of betting, popcorn coma, and the coldest beers ever.:)I walked around for a couple hours, camera in hand and shot everything that caught my eye. Here are a few of my favorite shots. Can’t wait for next month’s live races!

 

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A few months ago I had the opportunity to attend The Hybrid Workshop at the Ace Hotel in Palm Springs, Ca. The main reason I attended was because it covered shooting film and digital side by side and allowed for a way to get the images from both mediums to match in color and consistency. When I first started in photography, all there was was film and I really loved using it. Not only did I love spending time in the dark room, I really enjoyed making my own prints. I could spend days in the film lab and not even think about it! Nothing else mattered, life was easy.

As time passed, and more and more film stocks became unavailable – along with the ever increasing price of development and scanning becoming too much to bare – I slowly but surely switched over to digital. All the time I would spend in the film lab disappeared, and eventually, so did the prints I loved making and sharing. Quite honestly I never LOVED digital as much as I LOVED film…until now. A couple of years ago, while sorting through old prints and digital files, I said to myself “Man, I wish digital looked like this!” Film is so beautiful outdoors and in bright light, while digital is not so great in contrasty light but excels in low light. I started thinking that I could use both mediums’ strengths to my advantage and I started implementing film back into my workflow – 1-2 rolls every shoot. One roll of color film and one roll of black and white film. The workshop helped me refine my process. I never advertised that I was shooting film and digital together (in case I screwed it up), I just did it. And although clients couldn’t quite pinpoint what it was, they would say things like, “I love your work… I don’t know what it is about it, but it’s got something.” I knew that “something” was film, proven to me by them predominantly choosing the film shots as their favorites.

The best part of shooting film is that the prints came back and that’s why most of my Wedding Collections come with printed proofs. The ability to look at your wedding day, engagement session, family session, etc. on printed pictures right in front of you is something you have to experience for yourself. For a long time, the tangible print was dead but I’m bringing it back.

Can you tell which are film below?

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 Special Thanks to all the great vendors!

Planner/Stylist: Yellow Bird Weddings & Event Production | Florals: Peony & Plum | Rentals: A Rental Connection & FOUND rental | Linens: Luxe Linens | Make-up: Ting Makeup | Calligrapher: KA Kalligraphy | Cake: Butterend Cakery | Hair: Billion Dollar Hair | Invitations: Prim & Pixie | Wedding Gowns: JENNY YOO Collection | Tuxedo: Friar Tux Shop

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Meet Miranda and Matthew, a sweet young couple we had the absolute pleasure of meeting and working with for their beautiful wedding. It was held at the cutest little farm nestled amongst the wineries in Temecula – Peltzer Farms. The venue served for both the ceremony and reception, offering the bride and groom a gorgeous background for their photographs! Have to say that this was a super fun outdoor wedding to photograph, from the lush green hills to the ready-to-pick vineyards and fresh vegetable garden, it was the perfect setting for their special day. Absolutely love these two and wish them lots of love and happiness.:)

 

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Venue: Peltzer Farms
Florist: Epic Stems
Cake: Cakes To Celebrate
DJ: KSDJ
Videographer: Vier Photo and Video

 

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With every one of my brides, I always try to achieve three things in my images – beauty, elegance, and timelessness. That’s what inspired this styled shoot at The Casino San Clemente. The venue was perfect! Extra points as it served for an excellent rehearsal (we have a wedding this year at the same venue!). We couldn’t have been happier with how fitting of a backdrop we had – from the lush green garden and large, outdoor fireplaces every corner of the venue was picture perfect.

Added to the beauty of The Casino San Clemente was the vintage furniture provided by Storied Rentals. The classic plates, flatware, and napkins provided by Dish Wish, along with all the gorgeous flowers from Enchanted Fine Florals, were expertly styled on our table by Starla of Enchanted Fine Florals. The gold, orange, and red tones of the tablescape brought the set together wonderfully with the venue’s natural setting (LOVE those gold sprayed pomegranates!).

Our lovely bride wore a stunning gown from Bonny Bridal – as if made to order. To complete the look, Melina and Jerry provided flawless makeup, while Dana styled hair to perfection. Photographing the stunning couple was a true pleasure.

We’ve worked with several of these vendors on other shoots in the past, and when we reached out to them to be a part of an Autumn Inspiration Styled Shoot for our brides we got a resounding “Yes!” This group of individuals brought together a gorgeous set-up that I was beyond excited to capture and share.

 

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Venue: Casino San Clemente
Flowers & Tablescape Stylist: Enchanted Fine Florals
Hair: Dana Matta
Makeup: Beauty By Melina
Dress shop: Bonny Bridal
Prop/furniture rentals: Something Borrowed Something Vintage , Storied Rentals & Dish Wish
Modeling Agency: Brand Models
Makeup: Jerry Avila

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Last week I had an amazing time photographing Parissa and Jeyson’s engagement session. We started the session in Los Angeles’ famed Union Station. There were so many great spots to shoot there that it was so hard narrowing it down to just a few. We then walked over to Olvera Street just across the street and took a few more shots. (Olvera Street is very special to me, when I was a boy my grandma and grandpa had a store there called “LaBrada Imports.” I use to spend all of my free time there – sweeping, cleaning, dusting, running the register, etc. Definitely some of my favorite childhood memories.) After Olvera Street, we drove over to the 4th Street bridge and got some of my favorite shots from the session. To finish off the session we headed to Santa Monica Pier and shot right on the beach. The light was so beautiful right after sundown that the water went a very beautiful blue. I loved it! I cant wait for Parissa and Jeyson’s wedding later this year at the beautiful Casino San Clemente. Here are a few of my favorite shots.:)

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