Aloha, and welcome to Julia Bach Photography, Hawaii Photography Blog

Not every photographer is lucky enough to call Hawaii his or her studio. The Islands provide some of the most dramatic and beautiful backdrops for a wedding, family portrait, or event. From lush tropical rainforests, to expansive sunsets, being a Hawaii photographer on the island of Oahu is certainly living Aloha (the breath of life).

I met Michelle and Neil at the Honolulu Bridal Expo not too long ago and instantly clicked with this couple. They are fun, young, self proclaimed “townies” and wanted to have their engagement photos taken in their local stomping grounds. We began the photo shoot at the Hilton Hawaiian Village lagoon and trekked all the way to Fort DeRussy park for some sunset shots. I normally don’t shoot in Waikiki for engagements, as most couples require a fair amount of seclusion in order to feel comfortable opening up, but these guys were just as natural and affectionate as if there hadn’t been hundreds of people on the beach! In fact, I don’t think they even noticed when a horde of other photographers gathered around to use them as their subject matter too!

Michelle has a job in the Wedding industry, so maybe that’s how she was able to so appropriately plan their outfits for the shoot. How perfect the blues and pinks of the Hawaii ocean and sunset matched their outfits! I am convinced she has control of the weather because it couldn’t have been a more beautiful day. I am so excited for this couple and their upcoming wedding early next year! I can already tell its going to be magical.

Couple embrace at Honolulu Marina Engaged Couple kiss at honolulu harbor Engagement Kiss in Waikiki Engagement Photography Honolulu Engagement Photography at Hilton Lagoon Engagement Photography at Hilton Lagoon Engagement laying on flowers Engagement embrace on Waikiki Beach Engagement Photo of Couple leaning on Palm Tree Engaged couple sit on tree in Honolulu Engagement Photography at Fort DeRussy Park Engagement portrait on Waikiki Beach Couple on Waikiki Beach at Sunset with Diamondhead Sunset Engagement on Waikiki Beach at Sunset Engagement on Waikiki Beach at Sunset Sunset Engagement Photography Waikiki

Bride and Groom on Secret Island To all you brides out there, I dont know how you do it. Planning a wedding has been one of the most stressful years of my life! As a creative person, who is constantly involved with and surrounded by weddings, you would think that this whole wedding business would be a piece of cake! Not in my case, but thanks to my friends and family it was one of the most beautiful events of my entire life, and as I mentioned, I have attended quite a few.

Jason and I are settling into married life quite well, and are so happy that we got to have some great times with all the friends and family that made it out to Hawaii. For those of you planning a wedding in Oahu, I highly recommend having your wedding at Kualoa Ranch. It is away from all the hubbub of Waikiki, which is what we wanted. For those of you unfamiliar with Kualoa Ranch, it is the location where several movies and tv shows are shot. Jurrasic Park and LOST are just a couple to mention. It has breathtaking mountains and is super green and lush. We got married on the Secret Island which is only accessible by boat, and then we got our own private beach to give our vows. The price for the venues is one of the least expensive, and they allow for outside catering, and are great staff. Check them out at

I used Bob Brown Hawaii Photographer for my photos. I had worked for him on Big Island for a while, and he is an amazing photographer. Him and his wife Naomi are so dear to Jason and I, and we love every picture we got from him. You can view Bobs Oahu work at as well as his Big Island work here!


Bridesmaids at Kualoa Ranch with Bride

So there is a new kind of lighting soon to be released called the gunlight. Specificially the Lowel GL-1 Power LED. Its a constant, dimmable, focusable light source with no wires attached. It almost looks like a giant flashlight! Apparently it is a very powerful solution to the downsides of lighting equipment. No more umbrellas, flutes, metering, and test shooting for light placement, just easy point and shoot. No more toting around bulky lighting equipment, just grab and go.

If you go to their website at you can check out samples of photographers work using the gunlight. I have to say, I am definitely intrigued. The gunlight comes out late summer, but you can pre-order now. Still so many unknowns though. Do you absolutely need an assistant to hold the light source, and what is the pricing? I am going to keep my eyes peeled for reviews on it once released because I didn’t feel that the website was a wealth of knowledge. Go check it out for yourself!

Being a Photographer in Hawaii, you inevitably end up shooting a lot of small weddings.  My very first wedding I photographed was probably my very favorite. Even though it was a small intimate ceremony , Erik and Jelina were the most in love couple that I have ever photographed. They just beamed at each other with love from the moment I met them, and frankly, couldn’t keep their hands off each other. Being from Seattle, there keen fashion sense, and quirky personalities really showed through.  I had an absolute blast shooting them, and even though I feel like my technique has improved since then, I still get the most compliments on their wedding.

Puako, HI Photography

Wedding Photography in Puako Hawaii

Wedding Photography on the Big Island

What couple wouldnt want their love to translate to camera so well!?! I have a few helpful hints for those Brides to be on how to get those cute lovey pictures you want so bad for your wedding day.

Numero uno: Meet your photographer beforehand. This may be tricky if you are having a destination wedding, however, it is important. You want to be sure that as well as loving their photography, that this is a person that you get along with, someone who keeps you at ease. Also, meeting them before hand gives a sense of knowing the person, that way you don’t get all stiff and awkward when some stranger is pointing a camera at you. For those of you who do not get a chance to meet this person face to face, be sure you get plenty of phone time with them. Although a wedding coordinator will probably do this anyway, be sure you discuss whats important to you for that day as far as pictures, and give them a sense of who you are and what you want.

Numero dos: Keep to a schedule. There is a schedule for a reason. So often brides are late, or ceremonies run long, or it just wasnt timed right, and you lose some of the most beautiful shots of your special day. Sunset shots! This is such a beautiful time of day to shoot, if you are having a wedding in Hawaii, you should make these pics a priority. It really sets your wedding apart as a destination, and Hawaii, or most islands are known for their unique and beautiful sunsets, dont miss it!

Numero tres: HAVE FUN! Your Wedding is a one time deal, enjoy it! Dont worry if the photographer is getting your bad side, or if you are bloated from too much filet mignon, photoshop can help later with any sort of personal insecurities you may have. What photoshop can’t do is create lasting memories of you having a great time at your wedding. So be goofy, be spontaneous, and show off your love to the world, and your photographer will handle the rest!

Using the sunlight the hour after the sun rises and the hour before the sun sets provides some of the most beautiful natural light photography that you can get. Because the sun is lower, sunlight travels through more layers of the atmosphere. The sunlight is more indirect and diffused by the time it hits your subject. Using the golden hour as lighting really brings some intense color to my images without me having to overdo it with the saturation. This creates some really beautiful warm hues. Patricia Gonzales proved to be the perfect model for this particular portrait photography session. Getting this yummy light isn’t easy though, we (me and my assistant) had to wake up at 5:00 to prepare and get to our location. Just as the sun was rose over Hualalai we began shooting. Because the sun was directly behind me, we were able to capture some really gorgeous blue sky as well.

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