Bruce Willey Photography: Blog en-us (C) Bruce Willey Photography (Bruce Willey Photography) Fri, 27 Aug 2021 20:54:00 GMT Fri, 27 Aug 2021 20:54:00 GMT Bruce Willey Photography: Blog 120 111 Mammoth Mountain Wedding After a year of mostly elopements and minimonies (thanks Covid), I was really happy to finally do a larger wedding . And to to document the wedding of Kristine and Wade, who I had met way back in 2019 during an engagement session, was an absolute honor. The couple are good people and easy to photograph, and it was a joy to meet their family and friends. Getting ready took place at the Tamarack Lodge, one of my favorite places to do these kind of pictures. A lot of cabins in the Mammoth area can be cramped affairs. Not these ones, and the proximity to the Forest Chapel is super-handy.

Speaking of Mammoth Mountain's Forest Chapel, the place always reminds me of John Muir's quote: I'd rather be in the mountains thinking of God, than in church thinking about the mountains. Reception was held at the Mammoth Mountain's Parallax Restaurant which can only be reached by gondola ride. Beautiful wedding, beautiful time. Thanks to the excellent staff, in particular Natalie, at Mammoth Mountain Weddings and DJ Channa (@weddingjukebox). 

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(Bruce Willey Photography) California Wedding Photographer Forest Chapel Weddings Mammoth Lakes Wedding Mammoth Lakes wedding photographer Mammoth Mountain Wedding Photographer Mammoth Mountain Weddings Mammoth Mountain Tamarack Lodge Fri, 27 Aug 2021 20:53:54 GMT
Marriage Proposal at Mammoth Mountain Jack emailed me weeks in advance to plan for his proposal to his girlfriend Lara. It had to be totally secret and at times it felt as if we were both bit players in a spy movie. Eventually Jack booked a Snowcat tour with Mammoth Mountain that takes you up to the amazing Minaret Vista in total comfort and fine style. See: for more information and booking. 

The snowcat driver was in on the secret and he let me ride up front to act like I was an employee. Food and drink were served and I went off to hide under a pine in the snow with a long lens. It was absolutely gorgeous as Jack got on his knee. I always get goosebumps witnessing the beginning of a long life together. 


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(Bruce Willey Photography) Convict Lake Lakes Mammoth Mountain photographer Resort Snowcat tours Wedding Weddings Fri, 22 Jan 2021 00:48:25 GMT
Alabama Hills Wedding Anniversary Celebration Twaritha and Varun wanted to celebrate their one year wedding anniversary. They had married in India and wanted to document their love for each other and their splendid, rambunctious new dog. So off to the Alabama Hills to spend the afternoon chasing light spilling over the Whitney Massif. 

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(Bruce Willey Photography) Alabama County engagement Hills Inyo Lakes Mammoth Mountain Owens photographer Valley wedding Weddings Fri, 22 Jan 2021 00:32:26 GMT
Convict Lake Minimony Love overcomes the cold and the virus with the beautiful couple Anastasia and Nate. Absolutely loved this couple doing their engagement session and wedding, all within two days at the Convict Lake. 


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(Bruce Willey Photography) Convict Lake Lakes Mammoth mountain photographer Resort Wedding Weddings Fri, 22 Jan 2021 00:25:28 GMT
June Lake Winter Wedding It was the last wedding before masks became fashionable. Finished the wonder couple (and now friends) Kari and Justin's wedding book a few days ago and I was astonished by how much the Coronavirus has affected our world. So weird and somehow comforting to see the lack of social distancing and fearless hugs. Some day soon—and sooner the better—we'll be back to our old selves, hopefully better humans as a result of this hardship. 

Anyway, Kari and Justin's wedding will go down as one of my favorites. We met a couple of days before the wedding after long and literary email exchanges—enough so that I felt I knew them well already. We squeezed in an engagement session at Mammoth Lakes, Convict Lake, and ended up at Hot Creek for a sunset. Kari had made an amazing dress herself that really needed snow to shine with its "the cold doesn't bother me anyway" theme, so we were all hoping for a storm in what had already been a lackluster winter. As luck would have it, it began to flurry just about when AlpenGlow Bridal (Nicki) was putting the final touches on Kari's hair. 

Ceremony had to be moved to June Lake Beach at the last minute, which turned out to be a splendid change of plans. Catch the little PhotoFilm at the end to see how a thoughtful minister ducks out of the way for the grand finale. Wish every man and woman of the cloth would have this kind of foresight. Afterwards, everyone repaired to the June Lake Community Center. I've done a few receptions at this venue and it works out really well for friends and family to comingle and have a good time, though the dance floor leaves a lot to be desired. Which was perfect because the whole party just moved up the street to the T-Bar Social Club where everyone danced until the whole town of June Lake warmed up a few degrees. 


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(Bruce Willey Photography) Center Club Community June Lake Lakes Mammoth Mountain Social T-Bar wedding Weddings Thu, 27 Aug 2020 23:44:44 GMT
Proposal Atop Crystal Crag, Mammoth Lakes, CA She said yes atop Crystal Crag. Super-fun proposal with two extraordinary people. Hid on the summit of Crystal Crag overlooking Mammoth Lakes region, enjoying the Sierra light. One of the more complicated proposals to pull off but well-worth it. And I've made some new friends. 

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(Bruce Willey Photography) Engagements June Lake Lakes Mammoth Micro-wedding Microwedding. Minimony Mountain Proposals Secret Wedding Tue, 25 Aug 2020 23:02:42 GMT
Mini-wedding at June Lake and Hot Creek, Mammoth Lakes Micro-wedding or the better and the more apt term "minimonies," are the best. And even if we weren't going through the most serious pandemic in a century, they would still be one of the best ways to get hitched. For but one example, you don't have to worry about any drunk uncles. 

Krista and Brenn's minimony was one of the best-planned, most fun I've had the pleasure of attending. Wedding began at June Lake Beach and then we headed over to Silver Lake, Krista's longtime haunt. Everyone took naps and we met back at Hot Creek to watch the sunset. A beautiful day. 


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(Bruce Willey Photography) June Lake Lakes Mammoth Micro-wedding Microwedding. Minimony Mountain Wedding Tue, 25 Aug 2020 00:26:56 GMT
Elopement/Wedding in Bishop, California Every now and again I get asked if I know a minister who can officiate the ceremony. Well, I know myself as much as I can, and I happen to be a man of the cloth as well as a photographer. Well, how can you do both? they ask. The answer is simple: one camera on a timer going off every five seconds and a second camera around my neck making me the second shooter/minister. I write a sermon customized to the couple and I put on my best wedding day garb. This wedding in Bishop was especially moving. We even had a reception and first dance afterwards. And my dog/assistant got to come along. 

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(Bruce Willey Photography) Bishop CA Eastern Elopement Elopements High Lakes Mammoth Minister Officiant Photographer Sierra Wedding Weddings Wed, 18 Dec 2019 21:14:31 GMT
Maternity Climbers Had the great opportunity to photograph a climber couple expecting their first. With three locations, we were allowed the time to talk about climbing and kids, something I have a little bit of experience with. Super fun evening, starting at Convict Lake, then up to Rock Creek Lodge, then settling down into the Tablelands for sunset and a full moonrise. 

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(Bruce Willey Photography) Bishop CA Lakes Mammoth Maternity Photographer Photography Tue, 20 Aug 2019 05:14:55 GMT
Patagonia Kids Matilda had the honored distinction of being chosen to represent Patagonia in one of their ad campaigns. Here are some of the out-takes from the shoot in the Alabama Hills when she was 4 years old. 

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(Bruce Willey Photography) Alabama Climbing Hills Kids Patagonia Mon, 19 Aug 2019 20:38:18 GMT
Mammoth Lakes Wedding, Forest Chapel and The Mill Megan and Austyn are the good people, the people who change the world. They work in Guatemala, lifting people out of poverty. So when it came time to be married they came back to the States and went to their spiritual center, the Eastern Sierra. 

With the ceremony at the newly renovated Forest Chapel and the reception at The Mill, the wedding day was beautiful and emotional, two families becoming one. They're somewhere out on the John Muir Trail, enjoying their honeymoon the hard way. A well-deserved break from the worries of the world. 

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(Bruce Willey Photography) Chapel Forest Lakes Mammoth Mill Mountain Photographer The Wedding Weddings Mon, 19 Aug 2019 20:14:44 GMT
Convict Lake Wedding Convict Lake weddings are always special affairs, but when you throw in two extraordinary people like Amanda and Abe (or A2 as they're known now), it becomes really special. Then you add some cultural with Middle Eastern dancing/drumming, a tightly practiced dance routine with Abe's groomsmen, emotional vows with the Sierra light spilling across Convict Lake, and you have a never-to-begotten wedding day. 

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(Bruce Willey Photography) Convict Lake Lakes Mammoth photographer Wedding Weddings Sun, 18 Aug 2019 21:23:12 GMT
Bishop Wedding Elk's Park The amazingly beautiful wedding of Mellissa and Tyler at the Elk's Park in Bishop, CA. Such a great spot. Engagement session at an undisclosed location near Bishop, CA. Many thanks for allowing me to be part of this true love. 

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(Bruce Willey Photography) Bishop CA Elks Lakes Lodge Mammoth Park Weddings Thu, 16 May 2019 05:31:01 GMT
A Winter Wedding, Mammoth Lakes When the groom sports a name like Winters, a couple is left with little seasonal choice than to have a winter wedding. With one of the biggest storms to hit the Eastern Sierra in a few years just two days before the wedding date, I was glued to Howard Sheckor's weather page (, summoning as much optimism as possible. Yes, it's possible to make pictures in a blizzard, and I've done that before, but sideways blowing snow is bad for carefully coifed  hair, to name one thing. 

But Saturday dawned bright and clear like a bluebird song. Both the Lopez and Winter family were amazing, along with their friends And of course it was great to see Cindy and Will after getting to know them over the summer when we did the engagement pictures in and around Mammoth Lakes. 

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(Bruce Willey Photography) Lake lakes Mammoth photographer photography wedding weddings Fri, 25 Jan 2019 06:06:11 GMT
Alabama Hills Wedding Rose and Max are two of the finest people one will ever meet. Both work for the Park service and are dedicated individuals. When they said they were getting married in the Alabama Hills I got goosebumps. We did engagement shots early, early in the morning, before the sun rose and it was one of the most illuminating session to date. 

Of course these engagement sessions help a lot for both me and the couple. It gives us a chance to get to know each other and for me to figure out how they move around each other so that when the wedding comes I'm prepared. 

Despite the timing of the wedding in the bright afternoon sun, it was a beautiful affair with the reception held at the Inyo County Museum. 

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(Bruce Willey Photography) alabama bishop ca eastern hills lakes mammoth Owens photographer Sierra Valley wedding Thu, 27 Dec 2018 04:56:50 GMT
Kauai Princeville St. Regis Wedding Destination weddings are a lot of fun and a lot of work. Happily I got to get in a little surfing but was beat from the 12 hour wedding day. Nevertheless, an incredible day and beautiful couple. 

(Bruce Willey Photography) destination hawaii kauai photography princeville regis st. wedding Sat, 10 Feb 2018 22:53:51 GMT
Tahoe City Gatekeeper's Museum Dan and Natalie are one of the coolest couples I've met. They came up to the Eastern Sierra to have their engagement pictures done and as luck would have it there was a blizzard that day at Convict Lake. No matter, they braved the sideways blowing snow and we had a blast. Their wedding at the Gatekeeper's Museum was decidedly warmer thanks to the summer. It went off without a hitch and was an amazing time. So glad I got to know them and we will keep in touch. Oh, and did I mention there were a dozen groomsmen, none of whom knew how to tie a bowtie? Much fun!


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(Bruce Willey Photography) city gatekeeper's lake museum photographer photographers tahoe wedding weddings Sat, 10 Feb 2018 22:29:17 GMT
Mammoth Lakes A fine wedding last weekend at the Pokonobe Lodge and Marina on Lake Mary, Mammoth Lakes. Reliving moment by moment making the album.

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(Bruce Willey Photography) and chapel. forest lake lakes lodge mammoth marina mary pokonobe tamarack wedding Fri, 09 Feb 2018 02:59:28 GMT
Convict Lake Resort Wedding Great couple from SoCal and Texas who have a strong connection to the Eastern Sierra. Of course they chose wisely where to get hitched: Convict Lake Resort. Great fun spending the day with these two and their extended family and friends.

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(Bruce Willey Photography) convict lake lakes mammoth photography resort wedding weddings Fri, 09 Feb 2018 02:38:06 GMT
Engagement: Mammoth Lakes, Convict Lake We had never met before. And it was beginning to feel like a spy novel. I wrote specific instructions to meet at the end of Convict Lake. There would be an X placed on the boardwalk with gaffer tape. I placed long strands of grass over my head and over my body and lay low, waiting with a telephoto lens suitable for shooting a deer at long range. A small boy walked over and spotted me. Terrorized, he ran back to his mother, who also ran back to their boat on the beach. Authorities were no doubt alerted. At last, two of the most beautiful men one could ever lay eyes on walked through the aspen forest. The man who had contacted me months before, the man that had put a nondescript duffel bag filled with money at the drop-off point, stopped when he saw the X. He bent down and proposed. The other man said yes! It was beautiful and moving documenting this historical moment in their lives.

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(Bruce Willey Photography) ca convict county lake lakes mammoth mono photographer photography wedding weddings Thu, 08 Feb 2018 21:57:33 GMT
Lake Tahoe Wedding What a splendid wedding at the top of Heavenly Resort with Hailey and Devin. Just got word they are having a baby in May. Huge congrats!

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(Bruce Willey Photography) heavenly lake photographers resort south tahoe valley wedding weddings Thu, 08 Feb 2018 21:45:04 GMT