April 12, 2016

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Ostaraphotography_lagunabeachengagement_may_adam_007MAYBELLENE + ADAM | ENGAGEMENT SESSION | LAGUNA CANYON + LAGUNA BEACH

Maybellene and Adam may be one of my most favorite couples ever, they are funny, relaxed, not to mention good looking and they are quite obviously madly in love with one another. A powerful combination for a memorable and stunning engagement session. I could photograph them every day of the week! I can’t wait to capture their love story this upcoming September in Santa Barbara!

I met the couple when I was photographing Maybellene’s sister’s wedding last summer in Laguna Beach. Michelle and David’s wedding reception was one to remember.  If you missed it you can re-live the memories here. It’s always a huge compliment when friends of the bride and groom hire me to capture their own wedding and May and Adam are no exception! Maybellene’s family is so lively and fun and I can’t wait to photograph another Gamboa wedding!!!

Read below and find out what these two love most about one another, the proposal story and the ring that Adam mined himself!


1. How and when did you know that Maybellene was ‘the one’: It was last year in the week of her sisters wedding. I had already fallen in love with the girl but our time in California had sealed the deal. I knew I wanted to spend the rest of my life with her.
3. What do you love most about Maybellene?? I love her passion. She dives head first into everything and I have yet to see her give into a challenge. It motivates me to constantly work harder and be the best person I can be.
4. Tell me the story about  Maybellene’s engagement ring?? Maybellene’e ring was an adventure for me. I wanted to do something special and put my own touch into it.  We shared the same birthstone (sapphire) and she had told me how much she dislikes diamonds. After a tiny bit of research and weeks of emailing back and forth with a sapphire mine in Montana, I finally got permission to mine my own stone. They had never let anyone into the mine who wasn’t employed by the company and they were really sketchy with the idea of me using their heavy machinery but, I may have told them I had experience with all the tools required. At the end of last May, I hopped on my motorcycle with all of my camping gear and trekked up to Phillipsburg Montana. It stormed the whole way and I still decided to camp. After a full day in the mine, I had a handful of stones sent off to be cut. After explaining this all to my mother, she decided to send me the ring my father had used to propose to her. As soon as it arrived in the mail, I took it to a local jeweler and had the sapphire mounted.
5. How did you propose? I was flying out to LAX a couple of days after Maybellene finished her field season on the channel islands. I had come up with a series of gifts for the week we were spending together in California. I planned to give her one gift each day and present the ring on the 5th of July. One of the gifts was a photo album of all the pictures we had taken together, as well as apart for her 3 month field season. The final page of the album had a picture of my order form from the jeweler. It was the first time we shared a last name on paper. Right below that was a picture of the ring itself. So, on July 5th, she had reserved a beautiful cabin in the thick, lush forest of Topanga canyon. We were alone and far from civilization. After some wine and an evening spent under the stars in a rustic outdoor hot tub, we came inside and sat on the couch. Under the pillow, I had hidden her two gifts for that evening. The first was the photo album. We sat there and looked over our memories from the past year. When she was approaching the last page, I started to tell her about my adventure to Montana to visit a mine. She was confused by the last two photos and that’s when I finished my story about the ring and asked her to marry me. Never have I been so nervous about anything in my life.
6. What are you excited about most about your wedding??? It may sound cheesy and simple but, I see the wedding as the day we officially start our lifetime of adventure together. I’ve found my partner in crime and spending everyday for the rest of our lives together, can’t come soon enough.
1. When did you know that Adam was ‘the one’?
I don’t think there was any one time when I knew for certain. I realized it over several smaller instances like when he sent me a clown nose in a care package while I was working on the island, when our car broke down in a remote area and he insisted on hiking back to our housing carrying the bucket of mussels we collected for dinner, and when he bought me a new journal with our picture in it because he knows how therapeutic it is for me to write.
2. What do you love MOST about Adam?He’s creative, intelligent, supportive, and so many other things, but I think what I love most about Adam is that he loves ice cream almost as much as I do and always manages to get it all over his face.
3. What are you excited about most about your wedding???
I’m excited to see if I cry more at the wedding or if my Dad cries more! No, I’m kidding. I know my Dad will cry more. In all honesty, I am really excited to celebrate our relationship with our families. Our wedding will be the first time our families come together!
4. What are you looking forward most about being married??Always having someone to go get ice cream with (see Question 2). We get a free ice cream for every 10 stamps we get on our buyer’s card!
5. Anything else you want to add?????Whenever I’m really anxious or stressed, Adam will roll me up into a burrito and squeeze my toes to calm me down. He’s my safe place, and I think if you’re lucky enough to find something like that, then you don’t let it go.
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the experience