This is somewhat of an emotional post for me, as Erik’s father Gene recently passed away due to cancer and is no longer with us. I feel honored that I was able to photograph both his son and daughter’s weddings this past year, and to be part of these great celebrations. In the brief time I’ve known Gene, he treated me like one of his own and was just the coolest dad for Erik and Christina–not to mention he’s was always one of the first to cut loose on the dance floor. I remember the first time I saw him dance at his cousin’s santa barbara wedding and was surprised to see him totally gettin’ down on the dance floor. Gene definitely knew how to boogie and, although I recently learned that he knew of his cancer back then, he was totally sticking it to it and living life to the fullest, savoring the moment. Gene was a proud, working man that owned his own landscaping company and built a beautiful oceanfront home and gorgeous family. For some reason or another, he always reminded me of Grandpa Joe in the original Willy Wonka’s Chocolate Factory–just a fun-loving guy with a whimsical mustache that wasn’t afraid to enjoy himself and say to hell with his age.
I’ve been meaning to post the complete set of these photos for some time, but it always became one of those ‘things that you tell yourself you’ll eventually get around to’ but never quite seem to get there. Life is too short to leave things on the back burner and wait for the perfect moment to make things happen. So i’m dedicating this post to Gene by ‘getting around to it’ and showing you guys the deeply emotional, incredibly hilarious celebration that was Erik and Christina’s wedding at the Santa Barbara Museum of Natural History.