R & B: Road trip gone wrong

I always get lost. I do, I don’t even know how that happens so much but it does. I’m the worst person to ask for directions, I can name at least 50 people who will attest to that. But my then-fiance now-husband Rhoel, God bless him, is the man with a map and a compass. He loves reading them things and is probably the most frequent user of Google Earth.  So when we decided to shoot some more after our cowboy episode at El Kabayo last June 11, the spontaneously conceived concept was a no-brainer: we would pretend to be on a road trip. Well actually, we were on a road trip (Manila-Pampanga, hello!)! but to add a little twist to it, we decided we wanted to be lost.

Of course, we weren’t really lost (our fab photographer Paolo Feliciano is a local, remember) but technically, we were not not lost either because we didn’t know exactly where we were (somewhere in Clark with VERY few vehicles) or where we were going. Just following photographer’s orders was what we were doing. 8 )

And then we decided it would be more exciting if our reliable little white car, Snarf, conked out on us…

… which would force us to walk.

We’ll end up here, in this cozy English pub on a nice, warm afternoon.

And we’ll have some drinks and live happily ever after. Well, that’s the general idea. LOL.

— The End —

Again, this whole gig would not have been half as lovely without the intervention of our make-up artist Pia Reyes and hairstylist Dave Lopez. Cowboy hats off to you guys! 8 )

P.S. Yes our beach wedding photos will be up on the blog, too (Hey, it’s mine, right? Besides, how many times can one be so self-absorbed? Ok, don’t answer.)


R and B: Yeeehah!

I got married.

Yep, I’m hoping that one line would explain everything. But because pictures paint a thousand words, I’m not going to waste any more time and space on nouns and verbs. Below,  please find evidence of my busy-ness a week before the big day.

For the record, we’re not a pose-y couple, so we never really considered doing themed shoots. We mentioned this to our photographer Paolo Feliciano and asked instead for places in Pampanga (where he is based) that are not yet gasgas as pre-nup locations. We ended up at the El Kabayo Ranch because we thought it would be fun and easy enough to dress up as cowboys. Who’d have guessed it wasn’t meant to be thematic? 8 )

TRIVIA: My white horse is named Marica, a Polo horse and their “artista” because she is often used in films; Rhoel’s horse is called Majesty, a retired champion racehorse. Cool dudes.

The ranch charges P350 for 30 minutes of horse-riding (or P650 for an hour), with a guide. It also rents out cowboy hats, vests, boots and scarves for P250/set.  We rented only the vests and hats and worked with our own get-up. Special thanks to our make-up artist Pia Reyes and hairstylist Dave Lopez for turning us into pretty little Western things.

The ranch recreated an old Western town, complete with a courthouse, bar, post office, etc. It was surprisingly original. Kudos to Paolo for finding the place (what can we say, he’s a local!).

Man, that was fun! Part 2 coming up. Change costumes 8 )

Orj and Len: Hippie love

Let’s just think of this as the prequel to a box-office hit. Except that, well, it’s a pre-nup that’s being shown after this creative couple’s big project —  their 1920s flapper-themed wedding in Tagaytay on Jan. 2, 2010. Instead of going far, Orj and Len decided to bring their engagement shoot to Tagaytay as well.

This is, hands down, my favorite engagement shoot last year. Very happy and hippie and heartfelt! It didn’t look too composed or you know, themed. It’s just effortlessly gorgeous. See what two people in love and one photographer in love with his craft can do with a yellow van, a parking space, some balloons, hoops and signs. Oh and a lot of styling by Len, the bride.

If you say so…

I totally dig this van! The couple searched for a LONG time before they found this perfect little moving thing.

A kiss for luck and they’re on their way…

If, like me, you just want to stay a little longer with these two on their hippie shoot, head over here for more photos from Joey Boquiren


Mark and Lizzie: The house on Balete Drive

Since I’m on big-old-house mode…

Welcome to the house on Balete Drive.

For those of you who did not grow up with movies like Patayin sa sindak si Barbara or Shake, Rattle and Roll (the earlier ones), you probably would not know what Balete Drive means. But for those of us who do, a house on Balete Drive is always haunted, always scary, always sends shivers down the spine.

The Alcuaz mansion was built in the 1920s, and for some reason, this is where Mark Esteban and Liza Contemprate decided to have their (third) engagement shoot. I wonder if they were horror flick freaks when they were dating?

Check out the photos from Paolo Ruiz… Goosebumps!

From Paolo:

Every detail of the architecture was preserved in such a way that you will detach yourself from the present time. I was kind of expecting an old deep-eyed butler, in a sleek yet faded suit, to welcome us to the place. Instead, we were welcomed by a cool dude in short pants. All is well.

One of the best things I love about wedding blogging (besides the break it affords me from real-life issues caused by my recently crazy day job) is discovering emerging talents in the industry. Like Paolo Ruiz here. This guy, who recently dipped his finger into wedding photography, is charging only P5,000 for back-up wedding coverage and engagement shoots. I tell you, that rate is almost impossible to beat, and frankly, it’s not proportional to his talent. But hey, he’s just starting and I say if you need one good photographer whose fees won’t scare you, then you know where to look.

Mark and Lizie got married at the St. Peter Parish  last Dec.5, 2009 and had their lunch reception at the House that Fried Chicken Built. Yes, you got that right, Max’s! 8 ) Enjoy married bliss you guys!

Fashion-editorialized engagements

In this day and age of themed everything — weddings, pre-nups, parties,  personalities (LOL) — only the dead have no concept to speak of. Everyone, and I mean EVERY. BREATHING. ONE. has some idea of some event in her mind (I use her because, face it, brides are the ones who do most of the thinking in weddings. Peace men!). Few, however, actually manage to pull it off. Most just end up trying hard (so sue me for honesty!)

(TIP: Read to the end for a gift!)

Zarah and Dan, on the other hand, not only pulled off their themed engagement shoot. Their smoking Moulin Rouge pre-nup was hotter than 10,000 mashed chilis! You look at their photos and you know that this couple can-can-can!!! What’s their secret? Well, let’s just say, a guy named Rene Gaviola, past winner of the Prix dela Photographie Paris, who, by the way, also shot these:

ANGEL & RAYMOND: Psyche

(I swear, I wish I were the one on this picture. This is what a thousand words is made of. My favorite bridal portrait.)

CLAIRE & GERRY: Filipiniana

LEA & RHETT: Romance in the (Nike) Air

DIANNE & CARLO: Anime

CHA & RYAN: Fully Booked

How Harry Potter is this next one?

And another from Zarah and Dan’s Moulin Rouge set:

So, green with e-n-v-y yet? Imagining yourself now in one of these portraits? (I know I am!) Well, good for you because Rene here, the man behind the lens, has caught on the Christmas spirit and decided to offer moonsnjunes readers — for a very limited time only — his engagement shoot + back-up photography package for only P20,000. That’s, let’s see, P 15,000 less than his usual rate? I’m not a reliable mathematician, but I know — and I say this with confidence, LOL —  that this offer translates to almost half of the total cost. HUGE thing.

This generous spirit expires with 2009. So shoot him an email at shootme@renegaviola.com before the fireworks light up the 2010 sky!

Dan and Zarah: Moulin Rouge!

He met Marmalade down in old Moulin Rouge

Struttin’ her stuff on the street

He sat in her boudoir while she freshened up
Boy drank all that Magnolia wine
On her black satin sheets suedes and dark greens.

Giuchie, Giuchie, ya ya here (here ohooh yea yeah)
Mocha Choca lata ya ya (yea)
Creole lady Marmalade

Voulez vous coucher avec moi ce soir

Voulez vous coucher avec moi

But when he turns off to sleep memories creep,
More-more-more

Somebody pick up my jaw from the floor. It’s still there somewhere.

I am just. in. AWE. of this couple — Zarah Cabral and Dan Ruiz — for pulling off a Moulin Rouge-themed engagement shoot. It’s probably the most dramatic — and definitely the most seductive — pictorial I’ve ever seen. Kudos to Rene Gaviola for the amazing work! What can I say, the guy is king of themed/fashion pre-nups!

Zarah and Dan have nothing but praises for their photographer, who spent five whole hours with them at Victoria Court to shoot this wildly believable interpretation of the Nicole Kidman-Ewan McGregor hit (one of my and my fiance’s faves, too!). Of course it doesn’t hurt that the dresses were (borrowed) from Gerswin Qua and the make-up was done by Kris Bacani. The headpieces were courtesy of the Lucban Hat Factory, a real find for those who need hats and fascinators. Everything just worked out perfectly.

Now if you want this kind of pre-nup photos, stay tuned because the man behind the lens here is announcing a GREAT, IMPOSSIBLE-TO-RESIST DEAL here on moonsnjunes pretty soon. For now, its okay to drool. 8 )