The Journal for New York City's Top Wedding Photographer Jide Alakija

Houston Discovery Green Engagement Session, TX, Olu + Dupe

Not very often I get a couple that does two engagement sessions. Usually it happens when your couple love fashion and enjoy dressing up. I've worked with Olu and Dupe before in Nigeria covering their Nigerian Traditional Wedding in Lagos. Having had that experience with them really added a new dimension to their engagement session. You might be wondering, aren't they married already? Why do an engagement session in that case. Most Nigerian couples have two wedding ceremonies (Nigerian traditional wedding and a blessing). It's very common to do an engagement session between the two events.

10 Degrees Event Centre Lagos Traditional Wedding, Olumide + Dupe

It's not very often you hit it off with a prospective client, and become good friends with them before they become a client. While that's not exactly what happened with this couple and me, it was close. After they signed me to shoot their Houston wedding late in the summer of 2016, I  quickly became really good friends with them.

Last fall, I was in Houston for a wedding photography assignment, and while there I hooked up with Dupe for coffee. Olumide was working as a management consultant and was on one of his postings out of state. I enjoy taking any chance I can to get to know my clients better, so I try to see them when I'm in their city for other jobs or just passing through.  Just from this little conversation, we both thought it would be a good idea to fly me down to Lagos, Nigeria so that I could shoot their traditional wedding. It seemed even more appealing to me, as I would get to spend Christmas and New Year's with family based there.

I also had the opportunity to work with an alumni of a recent Alakija Studios Workshop on this wedding. I have long admired the editorial work of Emmanuel Oyeleke, so having him shoot this event alongside me was a complete honor.

Houston Engagement Session, Ibukun + Tolani

I was very lucky to have shot Ibukun and Tolani's engagement session earlier this summer. I was ws referred to them by Tolani's sister who's wedding I had shot the previous year in Houston. I haven't blogged that wedding yet (one day I'll get round to it as it is one of the most beautiful weddings I've photographed). Ibukun and Tolani have such amazing chemistry quite different from most couples. They share their relationship interests on their YouTube channel which is where I got to know a lot more about them. Tolani is a really talented lady with interests including Hair and  Make up, they both are engineers with who love to dance when they unwind. With so many creative interests it was hard not to feel intimidated doing their engagement photos. With the help of Chioma from Dure Events, we decided to present a different side to their personality by doing a very "Glam" session, quite different from what I usually do with couples. We got them into very stylish attire and took them to the docks East of Houston where we got to do half of the shoot on a boat then we did the remaining part of the shoot in the prestigious Omni hotel presenting their more elegant side of their personality.

Paris Engagement session, Dipo + Ruby

I have been looking forward to updating the blog for sometime now and now that I have had the chance to do so I will not hold anything back.

I was introduced to Dipo and Ruby earlier last year while they were planning their wedding. I was on a brief work assignment in London and it seemed like a good idea to meet and discuss the potential coverage of the wedding. Dipo threw in the middle of the meeting the idea of shooting their engagement session in Paris. Apparently Paris is one of Ruby's favourite cities and being the romantic that Dipo is he was really game with the idea. We went over there at the beginning of what we thought would be spring (it was really cold) and we thought the fresh blossoms would be awesome with the landscape. I had a VERY good feeling from this shoot, the couple gave me plenty of room to tell the story of their love using the landscape.

As I don't speak very good French I had the pleasure of working with my very trusted colleague, Crystal Deroche who runs a creative agency in London and Paris to help out on the day. We couldn't have gotten by without her help. I really enjoyed working with Dipo and Ruby on their engagement shoot and was even excited about shooting their wedding in the fall in London. I shall be posting their wedding story soon.