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Azadeh and Mustafa-wedding-1206

When your bride is a Persian beauty and your groom looks the part of a dashing Afghan prince, this is one multicultural wedding not to be missed. You might remember Azadeh and Mustafa from their engagement session in downtown Chicago. Azadeh and Mustafa tied the knot at the Chicago Marriott Naperville; from the soft romantic color palette and the wintry accents to the gorgeous ruffled cake, this multicultural affair is a true mix of all things pretty with a dash of whimsy. The Bride: beyond beautiful with her striking features and dark eyes. The ballroom: lit up in purple perfection. The guests: a room full of similarly stunning Persian friends, oh, and obviously everyone full of joy and love for the newlywed couple. I mean, “cultural beauty” is a style term we like to throw around in the wedding world, and Azadeh and her crew nail this head-on.

Our outdoor portrait session got cut a bit short, but I love what we got anyway, with Azadeh looking so pretty all wrapped up in her fur wrap, and our indoor shots at the hotel having a fun, retro glamour vibe. I loved getting to know Mustafa’s side of the family who came from Los Angeles, especially his super younger, super hot sister. I must have said that to her and Mustafa at least 10 times that day. Scroll through to see more photos from Azadeh and Mustafa’s special day!

 

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Azadeh and Mustafa’s Wedding Guide ::

Venue, Chicago Marriott Naperville // Cake, Chicago Marriott Naperville // Catering, Kabobi Grill // Music, Armin Jalali

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chicago couples engagement smiling having fun natural

I remember meeting with Azadeh and Mustafa and just loving how sweet this couple is. She is soft-spoken, a little shy about speaking English because it’s not her native Persian language and she’s only been in the States for two years. And Mustafa, the lucky groom-to-be, just couldn’t stop smiling at Azadeh the whole time we were together. I could tell, right off the bat, these two adore each other!

We braved the frigid temps and notorious lake effect in downtown for this Chicago engagement session, just to get those iconic city shots amongst the soaring skyscrapers of the Financial District and the mixed Art Deco, Art Nouveau styling of the Lyric Opera of Chicago. You’d never know it was freezing out, because Azadeh’s bright smile and pretty pink dress really injected a dose of fun into this wintry engagement session. Each time I posed them and told them to snuggle up and laugh with each other, they stayed all wrapped into each other, even when my camera was down. Language was no barrier and that has to be my FAVORITE thing about photographing my couples: they’re so joyfully in love that they don’t need me snapping away in order to show their affection.

After our shoot, we ducked into a French brasserie to warm up, and chatted over soup, oysters and drinks about their upcoming wedding. It’s right around the corner in December and I cannot wait to be part of their big day. Hope you enjoy my favorites from their downtown engagement session!

xo, Melissa

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female birthday photo shoot

When you turn 40, some people celebrate with a big party. Others do something momentous like sky dive or go on a fancy trip. And some gift themselves boudoir shoots like I did, or special portrait sessions. As a photographer, I always recommend every woman to embrace her individuality by doing a custom portrait session – or a boudoir shoot, if you’re feeling risqué.

female birthday photo shoot

Yoko here is a dead ringer for Chrissy Teigen, ya think? Yoko’s 40 and fabulous, and although she said her mom will freak out about the girls peeking out, we managed to walk the line between tasteful and sexy with this empowering portrait session to celebrate Yoko’s milestone birthday. In an artist loft somewhere in Chicago, we experimented with natural light, poses, and paint can props to bring out the best of Yoko – you can see, they don’t have to be of the 50 Shades variety. Read on for a few tips on how to rock your next portrait or boudoir session:

female birthday photo shoot

  1. What to wear. Something I always say: what to wear is really an opportunity for the client’s personality to come out. A cozy knit cardigan and over the knee boots is modest enough but inviting and reflects Yoko’s soft and sweet side. Her casual workout gear in one of her looks brings out the “girl next door” vibe who takes pride in taking care of her body. And of course, always bring a variety of looks to shoot.
  2. What about props? As a portrait and boudoir photographer, what you should wear will dictate both your props and accessories. Yoko paired a coffee mug in her first look, and this worked well to show a quiet time of contemplation by the window. So bring items that define who you are and the symbol you want to portray.
  3. Beauty advice. Don’t neglect to get dolled up for your epic birthday shoot. Professional hair and makeup always looks more finished than when you do it yourself. You won’t regret this!

female birthday photo shootfemale birthday photo shootfemale birthday photo shootfemale birthday photo shootfemale birthday photo shootfemale birthday photo shootfemale birthday photo shootfemale birthday photo shoot

female birthday photo shoot

female birthday photo shoot

female birthday photo shoot

female birthday photo shoot

Yoko-137female birthday photo shootfemale birthday photo shootfemale birthday photo shootChicago Portrait and Boudoir Photographer

Melissa Diep Photography is a highly sought after wedding, engagement, family, maternity, newborn, baby, and children portrait photographer based in Chicago. Melissa strives to capture organic moments as works of art. She loves to incorporate natural environments and soft light to create beautiful imagery.

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