Viewing entries tagged
Tucson

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Alisa + Andrew

There’s a really nice feeling you have inside when others trust you to “do your thing.” I think this is true with all aspects of life, whether work, sports, or in relationships (I don’t mean “Do your thing *wink wink*, but more so, “just be you.” Get your mind out of the gutter). To have others not just recognize your ability, but ask for it, unmoderated. I bring this up because Alisa & Andrew were explicit in letting me “do my thing.” In our discussions they understood the aspects of a film and what I’m continually trying do with my work. I am so grateful for their trust and that of my other clients, and it’s certainly not something I take for granted. There are times I’ll be driving in my car when recognition of this strikes, and I’ll let out a joyous yell in celebration (I don’t do this with passengers, as that would make it obvious what a goof I am. And I don’t think anybody reads my blog so I should be safe confessing it here). What I’m saying is that it’s a privilege to make my films and do what I do, and I want Alisa & Andrew to know how happy and thankful I am for their trust. Now, onto their film!

I spent quite a while simply thinking about the direction I wanted to go with their Highlight Film. I want things to ebb and flow, but there’s always a narrative backbone with a certain mood or emotion. This dances on a spectrum of upbeat celebration on one end to powerful emotion on the other. Typically with comedic and sentimental moments sprinkled throughout. In my longer Signature Films I can shift up and down this spectrum, but it’s much harder to do in the short span of a Highlight Film. However, Alisa & Andrew’s wedding day played strongly on both ends, with intensely emotional vows and one of the best reception dance-offs I’ve ever seen. So, I made the decision to start their film with an immediate emotional pull, and then witch gears halfway to a festive build and climax. This is certainly one of my more unique films and I’m so happy with how it turned out!

Just an epic dance-off involving pom-poms

Just an epic dance-off involving pom-poms

Filming at La Mariposa is one of my favorite venues in Southern Arizona. The large grounds and trees make for a beautiful backdrop in an otherwise desert landscape. They also shroud the venue to make it feel intimate and separated from the city.

La Mariposa wedding gazebo

La Mariposa wedding gazebo

I <3 cafe lights

I <3 cafe lights

I LOVE a clean and distraction free background for toasts

I LOVE a clean and distraction free background for toasts

*Gear talk* I had a commercial shoot scheduled for the week after Alisa + Andrew’s wedding, for which I had rented a Movi. It’s a motorized gimbal that keeps your camera nice and steady for shots with a lot of motion. Similar to a Glidecam, but more versatile. I had a lot of fun running around throughout the day with it. The most notable shots with it in their Highlight Film are during the processional, the dance-off, and the post-ceremony bride & groom filming session (something I always encourage couples to add to their timeline to get intimate shots. Typically about ~10 minutes).

Forgot to bring a monitor. Whoops. Still grabbed some stellar shots at Alisa + Andrew's wedding!

A photo posted by Carl S. Miller (@carl.s.miller) on

Here’s wishing Alisa, Andrew, and their son a wonderful future! I know good things are in store for you guys.

~Carl

Had an awesome time working with the vendors below:

Veronica Dominguez Photography & Priscila Matei Photography

William Olguin and The Ohhh Booth (Check out the gem below of me with my second-shooter Matt)

Gigi Bridal

Cakes by Genevieve LLC

Endless Decor

 

 
Wedding videographer photo booth
 

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Jolene + Ken

Jolene and Ken had a beautiful "destination wedding" in southern Arizona this summer. From Phoenix, they wanted to get away somewhere different (but close) to create their wedding memories. They ended up picking some of the best venues the Tucson area has to offer. The ceremony was at St. Augustine Cathedral is in the heart of downtown Tucson, which is always a pleasure to film at. The Spanish Colonial style adds a rustic romance to the Catholic ceremonies that is hard to match on the west coast. Preparations and the reception were at the J.W. Marriott at Starr Pass, which is nestled up in the mountains just west of the city. If you'd like to see cactus no matter which way you look, stay at the J.W. Marriott at Starr Pass. 

Now gorgeous venues are important, but it's the atmosphere created by family & friends is what makes it a wedding. I had a blast getting to know members of their wedding party (many of whom are a hoot) and the reception had everybody on their feet. You can't really beat a choreographed first dance with confetti canons. Having an awesome vendor team definitely helps to ensure the day goes off without a hitch, and it was a pleasure working along side Lori O'toole Photography and all the awesome guys at Satyr Entertainment

~Carl

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Rebecca + Frank

I’ve been listening to a lot of old vinyl lately so it was easy to notice Frank’s extensive collection in their home. There was some Paul McCartney, Huey Lewis, and Earth, Wind, & Fire in there. Good stuff indeed. I bring this up because details like this so easily remind me of how much I love what I do. I’m a filmmaker for a lot of reasons, but being able to get to know the amazing couples and people I work with is something I find intrinsically rewarding. Without sounding mushy-gushy, it allows me to care about my clients at a deeper level than what most professional relationships allow. I create better films because of it. Not just because I can include certain content and showcase it in a way that is more personal, but because we all work harder to please those we care about. I want to repay the couples who allow me a glimpse into their life with the best possible wedding film they can image.

From attending their rehearsal dinner at Carusos (a pretty amazing Italian restaurant in Tucson) to bringing in the New Year with them, Rebecca & Frank gave me a pretty amazing glimpse. I got to eat churros & Sonoran dogs, listen to a didgeridoo, and by the end I felt as if I was part of their wedding party. Rebecca and Frank started building an amazing life together long before their wedding, and I have no doubt they’ll continue to be as in love and committed to another as a married couple. Now go watch their amazing film above (perhaps again) .

~Carl

Awesome wedding vendor shout-out:

Photography: Jason + Anna Photography (Scottsdale, Arizona based)

Planning: Alain Garcia of Small Town Event Design (Serving Tucson, AZ & Mexico)

Venue: Museum of Contemporary Art (MOCA) Tucson

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Jen + James

James, I know what it's like. My wife loves stealing my pizza crust, too. I'm not sure what it is, but giving her that small piece of bread wins me huge bonus points. Maybe on our anniversary I'll figure out a way to make a pizza that is 100% crust. No sauce or cheese, just crust. Does that sound ridiculous? Ya, you're right it does. I think that's just called "bread." 

Jen & James, your wedding was fantastic. From the Fireball GoPro to Mr. Dang's surprisingly short speech , Matt and I had a blast being surrounded by all of it. It would be hard to pick a favorite moment, but Jen, as you were preparing to leave the bridal room for the ceremony, you gave us this gem:

Arizona Wedding Video

^ I think this shot sums up your wedding perfectly - you two gave everyone a smile that day. From a filmmaking perspective, it was nice to smile so much while editing your films as well .

Here's to sharing the blankets, laughing at cheesy jokes, and enjoying venti double shot dirty chai's with soy!

~Carl

We worked with some awesome vendors at Jen & James' wedding! Check them out: Lauren Button Photography (Tucson, Arizona based). Venue: Westward Look Wyndham Grand Resort & Spa. Make-up & hair: I Do Hair and Makeup Artistry (Servicing Arizona & Puerto Rico)

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Sofia + Hector

Shakespeare, Plato, E.E. Cummings, John Lennon....just to name a few. I have never been to a wedding ceremony with works read from such a pantheon of great minds. Sofia & Hector's ceremony was a beautiful experience, and one that makes you reflect on what the best man described so eloquently, "that great majesty and mystery, that we call love."

I wanted to do something different for Sofia and Hector with their wedding film. Both are artists, and so I wanted to paint their narrative in a way that spoke to them. The opening sequence is designed to catapult you into their story. It's the climax at the start, which bends the typical narrative arch, but hey, some rules are meant to be broken, right? It's a story within a story, and it sets the tone for rest of the film. It's hard to pick a favorite experience from the night, but as a music lover I especially enjoyed the groom/best man musical performance at the reception. I would highly recommend you check out Hector's awesome music here.

I wasn't able to fit all the amazing readings and toasts into their highlight film, so I made sure their longer Signature Film had the others. I can't express enough what a dream it was as a filmmaker to have so much amazing content to work with. On the note of our Signature Films, we do get a lot of inquiries regarding what they are like. Simply contact us and we can provide you with a private link if you'd like to watch one.

I can't say enough good things about Sofia & Hector, and truly wish them the best as they walk hand in hand across the universe.

~Carl

Shamless vendor plug: We had a fantastic time working with the people at La Mariposa (as always) and with the pretty rad Torey Salyer Photography (Tucson, Arizona based)!

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