Author: F.A. Formica Studios

When I am behind the camera I am creating art, not just taking pictures of an occasion. My style has evolved from fundamentally photojournalistic to one that incorporates varying approaches

St. Mary’s Parish Wedding

How we met

It was so random, but remarkably unforgettable. It was summer and traffic was heavy, so I allowed myself to be talked in to carpooling. I definitely noticed the grace with which she walked, spoke and how well dressed she was the first time I saw her. We exchanged pleasantries and didnt think much of it. It will be a while before crossing paths again, when I, by chance, answered her call to the office. She remembered me, and we ended up having a 30 minutes conversation about what we have been up to and ended up meeting for a working lunch. She hated it and made it clear though, but I suspected she enjoyed being around me as much as I did, so I invited her to a social gathering to make up for that disastrous lunch and we just clicked. She was noticeably guarded and cultured but refreshingly curious. I now know we both found each other fascinating, which explains the volley of conversations afterwards. We harmonized naturally and most people assumed we had been friends for a while, naturally after that night, I started thinking “Okay, this could be something!”, the thought of which inexplicably felt like a billion joules. But again, it will be awhile before we will meet again and for the first time, I felt and noticed her absence.

How we got engaged

Kobby and I are both Marine Corps Officers, which has marked and define our relationship. It was days before Christmas, we had spent the day preparing for me to depart the United States and as usual he was playing our favorite song “Lay with you-El DeBarge”. I found myself screaming over the music for him to get my bags without success. The music suddenly died down, I walked in and there he was, down on one knee with a pretty little box! Ive wondered how long he was in that position waiting for me to walk in. It took me a few seconds to figure out what was going on, I gasped out of surprise, I shouted “YES,” teared up and we were engaged! There were no cameras, no fanfare just the two of us. And just like that we were split up again, less than 24 hours after being engaged. While he was in North Carolina, I was on an aircraft carrier somewhere in the middle of the Pacific Ocean. It was difficult for us to see each other and we only had an opportunity to do so twice in 2 years. During his last visit he spontaneously planned a backpacking tour overnight which took us from Okinawa and Hong Kong to Palawan, Philippines. After that trip, we decided it was time to let the world know of our love and commitment to each other and how excited we were about the next chapter in our lives.

Best & Worst About Wedding Planning

Best – it is so exciting, to see this picture of this day you have imagined all your life come to life! At a minimum you will be the star and the center of attention of your own coronation, at most you will probably over dose on excitement and love. Worst – wedding planning is a daunting task and should be approached accordingly to avoid chaos, frustration and exhaustion. Expect disagreements and stress and have a plan to handle it.

Advice for Future Couples

Hire a wedding planner, it will be worth it. But if you decide to go our route then have at least one person who can be counted on when you need a hand, you will need it. I am stationed in California and he is Stationed in North Carolina, we planned our wedding from conception to completion. It was stressful at times and we disagreed on a number of things but it was rewarding, fulfilling and helped us build a baseline on how we will handle stress, disagreement and future collaborations. Invest in a wedding website with RSVP, Registry and schedule, it will help you manage and disseminate information effectively. Choose your wedding gown, caterer, and most important your photographer wisely, that is what will define your wedding how you will memorialize your wedding. In general, recognize that your family and friends are there to help you celebrate, do not let them distract or keep you apart! They will out of excitement. Spend time with them during the wedding rehearsal and at the rehearsal dinner. Last, for the first and probably last time its about you, you planned it, you created it, it is your coronation! your wedding day! Enjoy it! That cannot be overstated. You will have more fun if you lose your phones, only exchange pleasantries or 30sec conversations, focus on each other and dance the night away!

Videography: David Smith
Ceremony: St Marys Parish, Annapolis MD
Reception: Byzantium Banquet Hall, Annapolis MD
Make-up Artist:  
Hair Stylist:
Gown: Allure Romance 3059, Brides of California San Jose CA
Bridesmaids gowns: #131933, JJs House
Groomsmen suits: Midnight Blue Tuxedo
DJ: Valere Entertainment
MC: Brice Jokung,
Caterer: Jasmin Haralambatos, Custom Catering Annapolis MD
Cake: Cakes Plus, Laurel MD
Florist: Potomac Floral Wholesale MD

  • | F.A. Formica Studios
  • | F.A. Formica Studios
  • | F.A. Formica Studios
  • | F.A. Formica Studios
  • | F.A. Formica Studios
  • | F.A. Formica Studios
  • | F.A. Formica Studios
  • | F.A. Formica Studios
  • | F.A. Formica Studios
  • | F.A. Formica Studios
  • | F.A. Formica Studios
  • | F.A. Formica Studios
  • | F.A. Formica Studios

In her book Its Her Wedding and Ill Cry if I want to, Leslie Milk, who is the lifestyle editor of the Washingtonian, gives the following advise to brides: “Now that every Dick and Jane seems to have a digital camera, it is easy to underestimate the importance of having a true professional photographer with many years of experience.  Sure, anybody can take wedding pictures.  If they shoot enough of them, there are bound to be a few good ones.  But only a pro can light pictures to make everyone look good.” 

Styles of wedding photography that you might consider.   

  1. Photo-journalistic or documentary wedding photography…It is characterized by a natural approach from the photographer who follows the couple and the guests throughout the day while recording the events of the wedding as they happen in an unobtrusive manner. Minimal amount of posed shots are taken. Some photo-journatistic wedding photographers only use natural light for their photos.  Photos that are taken using only available light preserve the atmosphere and originality.  Some danger here as lovely natural light is not always available. Be sure that if you select this style be certain that the photographer will introduce artificial light using flash photography if needed.
  2. Conventional wedding photography…It is dominated by carefully posed shots of groups ranging from the whole wedding party to just the wedding couple themselves. 

These are combined with photo-journalism for the ceremony and reception. 

  1. Fashion wedding photography… It is partially inspired by editorial bridal magazine photography. The emphasis is on creating high impact visually interesting images. Although shots are set up, they are less formal or rigid. The photographer aims to find interesting spots as a backdrop and uses or creates strong light effects and unusual angles. The created images are often given further treatment in post-production. It is then combined with photo-journalism for the ceremony and reception. 

First be sure that you select a professional with years of experience. These pros are facing the challenge being created by those newcomers who have just purchased digital SLRs and are virtually unskilled in the fine points of photography.  Some have jumped into the market with the philosophy of shooting a ton of mediocre images and handling the bride a CD of images a short time after the wedding for a low price.  

Once again, Leslie Milk says it best. “ Here’s the most important thing you need to know about wedding pictures:  Book the best photographer you can afford as soon as you set the date.  The wedding music will fade, the flowers will die, and you won’t even remember if you ate, let alone what you ate, at the reception.  But the wedding pictures last forever.” 

A wedding album is the first family heirloom of a brand new family.  Think about the value associated with that statement.