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Category Archives: event

my brother’s wedding | Destination Gay Wedding on Coronado Island

I’m retired from photographing weddings. It was the way in which I cut my teeth learning photography. I’m grateful for the experience because I’m rarely rattled at a shoot…ever.

This, however, was my final wedding. (If I keep saying that, maybe it’ll be true;)

My brother’s. And, it was on Coronado Island at a beautiful venue. I celebrated my own anniversary at the Marriott on Coronado Island last year. I love not needing a car. The wedding weekend was so beautiful that I had the fleeting thought that maybe I’d do more weddings if the climate and ambiance was so beautiful. Mostly, I’ve photographed weddings in Texas, which means that 6 months out of the year, I’m sweating and getting a sunburn. I don’t have a fitbit because I obsess easily about well, everything, but I’d guess I walked 5 miles to and fro the groom’s hotel rooms which were on opposite sides of the complex. People ask me often if I’m from San Diego because my brothers and father all live there. For different reasons, they’ve all landed there over the past few years, and I’m fortunate to visit frequently.

This was my first time traveling with a baby. And, well, I can remember the days when I used to pack…drunk…a couple hours before a flight. I began packing for this trip on Sunday. We left on Friday. With one of those rolling carts you rent at the airport, full of luggage – everything from camera equipment to a bassinet. You’ll see one photo of the top of his head. He slept through the ceremony and spent most of the weekend in the hotel because well, Texas born babies don’t understand how to switch over to California time.

What memories we made!

I loved this rehearsal dinner spot. Monello in Little Italy. So fresh and good!

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I took a yoga class the morning of the wedding, and I’m glad I did because man, I got my steps in.
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I pretty much forced my brother to do a first look. And, can’t you see why?!
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I was relieved to find out that a funny guest had these made – and not my vain brother. Haha.
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Special thanks to my wife who second shot for me. She’s my favorite second shooter and I trust her implicitly, which means I was able to shoot more film than I normally would at a wedding. And, of course, film holds up well in southern California high sunshine.

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There were a number of toasts. But, my favorite moment of the reception was when my new bonus brother danced with his mom. Isn’t she adorable?
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And then, of course, my mom whom I don’t mention much. I am the oldest child and have never liked to share. She epitomizes the proud mother always. She loves us so much.

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I knew my brother would begin to drink and dance…we joke that our little boy better not get his dance moves from Uncle Zach…and suddenly, he wouldn’t want to do any photos. But, when I photograph weddings – which is rare because this was my last one – I always try to steal the bride and groom…or in this case, the grooms…away for a few minutes. On your wedding day, you should have fun and remember why you’re there.

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And, I mean, it was a full moon, which is second only to sunsets in my favorite subject to photograph.

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And they ended up using this image for their holiday card. Aren’t they cute? (Trust your wedding photographer).

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I cherish the photographs I have from my own wedding. It’s a day I want to remember for the rest of my life. I’m grateful for the photography skills I’ve garnered through the years. And never have I been more grateful than to utilize these skills to be of service to my family and friends. So, unless we share a gene pool or I’ve coined you as my chosen family or you’re getting married in Fiji or somewhere comparable (and my growing entourage can join me…with all of our luggage), this was my final wedding. And, it was one of my all time favorites.

yoga retreat in Iceland

I’ve always wanted to see Aurora Borealis, or what’s commonly called “The Northern Lights.” When The Travel Yogi asked me where I’d like to host a yoga retreat, there was no question: Iceland. I’ve had this trip in the works for a while now. It’s about half full. People often ask how many people travel with me on retreats. I feel as if 12 is a magical number. This enables me to offer everyone enough attention in the group classes. Beyond that number, I see bodies. With 12 people, I see souls.

As the trip nears, I’m planning what to wear (naturally). Suggestions for clothing from my friends above the Mason Dixon line is welcome. And, I’m becoming more and more and more excited about the classes I have planned and the sights we will see.

What I love about hosting a retreat through The Travel Yogi is that they create impeccable itineraries. When I host retreats on my own to places I’ve never visited, when it’s over, I often think, “Next time, I would’ve done this instead…” Because they have been to Iceland numerous times, they’ve fleshed out all the details for me. So, I can teach. Teaching is my favorite. This is the reason I don’t own a yoga studio or manage someone else’s. I long for one thing: to teach. This is my path, my dharma.

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(photos: guidetoiceland.is)

I am excited to walk along tectonic plates. This scientific phenomenon has always fascinated me. In Iceland, you can have one foot in North America and the other in Eurasia.
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(photos: Antti Pietikianen)

I’ve been researching and contemplating how to best photograph these lights. With my packing, how many cameras can I carry? Decisions, decisions…
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(photos: bluelagoon.com)

The Blue Lagoon – um, I cannot believe this is going to be my life for a week. If you want one of the 5 remaining rooms, find all of the details here:

ICELAND

I’m about to book my flight. I’m hopeful to go to NYC for a day and then to Iceland. On the way home, I’d like to go through London (never been). I’ve gotta talk this over with the people in my life who matter most, of course 😉

Atlanta and Seattle are also great places to fly from. You’d be surprised how reasonable airfare to Iceland is. If you have any additional questions, don’t hesitate. Send me a note: amber@ambershumake.com.

a film journey through Joe T. Garcia’s | DFW film photographer

For every single celebration, my family meets at Joe T. Garcia’s, the famous restaurant on the northside of Fort Worth. I’m a plant lady, so I have always loved their vibe. Stepping into the gardens here is like stepping into another world. Every quarter or so, I have the pleasure of taking photos for their social media and web branding, and it’s always a joy. The rich history of the restaurant and its lush gardens beg for the classic tones of Kodak Portra (along with a few Ilford 3200 black and whites). Thank you to Richard Photo Lab for the beautiful, timely processing.
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light up your life retreat 2.0

prana del mar 2017 announcement

I can remember sitting in my room awaiting the shuttle to the airport and fully knowing that I would be back the next year. And then I got home. And life happened.

Illness. Bills. Work.

Don’t get me wrong, beautiful things happened, too. Even in the trenches of life, there is beauty to behold.

For a brief moment, I thought, Maybe I’ll wait a few years to book another retreat.

In all honesty though, the experience on this retreat, in many ways, prepared me for what were some of the most challenging days I’ve had in this life. I can see how one experience prepares us for another.

See the magic that occurred a few months ago here.

Packages are available for $2195 – 2995. If you sign up prior to August 1st, you receive $100 off. Email me for all the details. amber@ambershumake.com

awaiting a winery wedding | destination wedding photographer

Sometimes, the light just can’t get any better. And this was one of those evenings. These two are blending their two families. And the kids were super sweet. I tried to make the event as painless as possible, as I’m sure 4 teenagers have other things they’d rather do on a Saturday evening. I’ll travel with them to photograph their destination wedding in Walla Walla, Washington at a winery in May. Then they honeymoon in a cruise through Europe. And upon their return, they’ll party with a few hundred of their favorite people at the Delaney Vineyards in Grapevine. I can’t wait.
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celebrating 70 years of life | Fort Worth photographer

This sweet family asked me to photograph a 70th birthday in the Texas Hill Country at Chinquapin Ranch and by the end of the weekend, I felt as if I had a whole new family. With the wonderful outdoor springs and indoor games, there was much to keep the kids and adults alike busy. Each night boasted beautiful concerts each night from a group of musicians who’ve been playing together for decades. And, they lacked a drummer, which my second shooter and partner in life happens to be.

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