Hannah & Carter planned a Lord of the Rings themed reception to follow their Orthodox Christian ceremony and the gorgeous redwoods of the Santa Cruz mountains served as the perfect setting for both the reception and their portraits.

Now, my dear friend Hannah LOVES to climb on things, so the discussion we had about getting her and her betrothed atop this stump in her wedding gown was quite short.

bride & groom on redwood stump

How cute are they!? Neither the bride or groom wanted to be stuck with tradition when it came to their outfits. Hannah’s flower crown and bouquet were constructed using local ferns and foliage with teal accents in flowers and peacock feathers to match her custom made dress.

couple whispering and smiling


black & white romantic kiss

There was plenty of tradition during their ceremony. Held at the Orthodox Christian church they both have attended their whole lives, surrounded by a strong community that supports and adores them as individuals and now as a couple.  For all the reverence, there was a distinct undertone of celebration and love, even laughter at times.

Christian Orthodox wedding entrance

Christian Orthodox ceremony

Christian Orthodox  ceremony crowns

Christian Orthodox ceremony laughter

Christian Orthodox ceremony


Christian Orthodox ceremony

With the formalities of the ceremony over, bits of their Lord of the Rings theme became more apparent. Here we see the Matron of Honor signing the marriage certificate while wearing a beautiful silver elven earcuff. 

Elven Earcuff and headband

Themed directions to the reception (or, more accurately, Directions to the Shire) were handed out as the ceremony guests exited the church


Signage continuing the theme and reiterating the sentiments of the invitations welcomed guests to the reception.


Thoughtful details reflected the theme and created a sense of whimsy and merriment that was downright contagious.

The cake table


Sweetheart table decorations:


Oversized silver goblets overflowing with wildflowers, ferns and berries adorned the long communal tables.


A signature cocktail, named “Barlog’s Fire Brew” is rumored to have similar ingredients to a Moscow Mule. ( vodka, spicy ginger beer, and lime juice)


The groom’s goblet:


The bride’s goblet:


The cutest Hobbit you ever did see was kind enough to hold the buffet table signage for a photo. His little sister also wanted a turn.


The number one question we receive when telling people we photographed a Lord of the Rings themed reception was “so, did people dress up?” Yes, yes they did. 


And they danced.


Thank you, Hannah & Carter for the opportunity to experience your truly magical and unique forest wedding. It’s an honor to capture love and creativity in so many ways all at once. You saw me cry a lot on Sunday, I cried again when I looked through your images today, all happy tears. Love you guys. Here’s a few more of our favorites. Enjoy Bali!






flying veil

  • July 30, 2015 - 4:01 am

    Megan Patzke - Amazingly beautiful!!!!

  • July 30, 2015 - 5:47 am

    Kathleen - Love it!!! So great that you made it a blog entry.

  • July 30, 2015 - 10:04 am

    Hannah Patzke - Awww this is so beautifully written and the pictures capture everything in such a compelling way! You are both artists. Love you guys!

  • July 30, 2015 - 11:26 am

    Zondra G Rapazzini - Amazing photos..truly captured a beautiful and loving couple who are enjoying their lives together…

  • July 30, 2015 - 2:49 pm

    Jeanne Rickert - Wow! What beautiful pictures. Unfortunately we couldn’t attend this most wonderful feast But the pictures make us feel such a part of this truly wonderful sacrament.

  • July 30, 2015 - 11:02 pm

    Gulnaaz Hanif - Beautiful wedding! Congratulations to the happy couple!

  • July 31, 2015 - 4:23 am

    Anna Marie Oakes-Joudy - WOW. Breathtaking and ebullient!

  • July 31, 2015 - 4:34 pm

    Karen Stevens - You really photographed the joy in their relationship.
    And you made my yard look pretty good too….where is that stump they are standing on? Thank you for capturing this moment in time for eternity!

  • August 1, 2015 - 6:43 pm

    Gerry Green - Beautiful idea.

  • August 7, 2015 - 5:23 am

    Joyce - Congrats Hanna. Looks like a beautiful day.

    Joyce and Ken Forsse

Louise and Marshall live in the same neighborhood as us and enjoy a lot of the same local Sacramento treats that we do. They incorporated their appreciation of the local beer scene into their wedding day by offering tasty brews from both Ruhstaller and Track Seven to their lucky guests.

Sacramento Local Beer

Louise chose to honor the memory of her father on a photo charm attached to her bouquet. This type of sentiment always brings a tear (or ten) to my eye.

Bridal Bouquet purple memorial photo charm

During the bridal portraits, Louise’s flower girl played up her talent for comedy and made sure these images are truly unforgettable.

funny bride and flower girl pose

But, what about the shoes? Marshall and his groomsmen wore grey Chuck Taylor All-stars. Marshall wore them in high top with mustache socks; Louise chose a silver metallic mini-wedge with a peep-toe and rhinestones.

groom converse novelty socks bridal flats

I love this shot of the bride and groom gazing at each other with the full excitement of the day in their eyes. This was just after their first sighting and before the guests started to arrive. Their venue, Vizcaya, is easy to find on 21st Street in Sacramento, with this gorgeous brick terrace and fountain welcoming  guests to the Pavilion and neighboring courtyard.

Sacramento Vizcaya Bride and Groom

A heartfelt ceremony in the courtyard with golden evening light. There was laughter, there were tears, it was perfect.

Vizcaya Sacramento sunset wedding ceremony

Getting silly during some portraits in the cool shade of the evening, Louise lets Marshall take center stage for a moment…

Funny groom and bride poses

This laugh has got to be one of my very favorites. Any bride who can be herself in front of a camera is my type of lady.

silly groom and bride laughing

A little ring-around-the-rosie with the bridal party let Mischa capture this cool, long exposure image of the bride & groom. “Just keep kissing and hold still!” Not the worst instructions you can get.

Sacramento Vizcaya unique bridal party


Mischa helped Louise & Marshall create a custom Thank You postcard to send to their guests with images from their wedding. Incorporating their wedding colors and designing exactly what they had in mind is what we love to be able to offer our dear clients.

custom designed 5x7 thank you postcard

Ryan & Phillip are a super fun couple who had a unique theme to incorporate into their engagement session and save the date cards: BART!

For those of you outside the San Francisco Bay Area, BART stands for Bay Area Rapid Transit and is the system of trains that runs all over the bay.

After the BART station, they went to the Merry-Go-Round in Tilden Park and finally the Botanic Park.

At the end of my favorites, you’ll find their custom designed Save the Date cards.

We hope you enjoy the images of these gentlemen in love!

BART Gay Engagement photography
BART Gay Engagement photographer
BART Fashion Gay Engagement
BART train in motion engagement photograph
Merry-Go-Round Tilden Park Gay Engagement
Botanic Park Gay Engagement photography
Botanic Park Gay Engagement Tilden Park
High Fashion Gay Engagement Photography, Tilden Park
Ryan & Phillip Save The Date Back Card Front
Ryan & Phillip Save The Date Back

This past Saturday, Mischa spent the day at William Land Park photographing dozens of dogs and their owners at Sacramento SPCA’s 2015 Doggie Dash.

The Doggie Dash is an annual fundraising event for the Sacramento SPCA and has a loyal following of participants and vendors alike. It was our first year and after raising $500 for the Sacramento SPCA, we’re excited to continue the trend!

To see the entire gallery go here = http://photomischa.com/proofing/index.php?gnum=326

Use password = spca

Here are some of our favorite pups and their people from Saturday’s event:




















We hope to see you and your doggies next year!