We love photographing Santa Barbara weddings because it, and the surrounding towns of Goleta, Summerland, and Montecito feel like what you would imagine California to have been like in the past. The people put a premium on caring for and preserving this beautiful nook of California's coastline and the feeling of community is strong. 

Santa Barbara History

For over a century, Santa Barbara has been one of California's premiere destination towns. In 1901, the railroad made connection possible between Los Angeles and San Francisco and the town would see its role shift from pastoral to a center of American popular culture. Years before Harry Chandler had even proposed his Hollywoodland development in the central Los Angeles basin which would pave the way for the city's enduring "Hollywood" brand, Santa Barbara was already well established as the center of the U.S. silent film industry. At the time, it even housed the worlds largest movie studio, the Flying A Studios. When film production eventually shifted south to Los Angeles, Santa Barbara continued to flourish and steady growth ensued. The mediterranean climate, sprawling citrus groves, and Spanish-renaissance architecture style of the quaint hillside homes perched above the frequently calm waters of the Pacific all contribute to the region being called the American Riviera for similarities it bears to the Côte D'Azur of Southeast France. The development of the University of California around the middle of the 20th century brought a new wave of thinkers and activists to town and its place in the formation of the modern environmental movement can not be overstated. Fortuitously situated between the Santa Ynez mountains and the Pacific Ocean, Santa Barbara has something for everyone from luxury shopping to trekking in the mountains. Boating of all sorts, be it whale watching, day trips to Catalina Island, or deep sea fishing, abundant viticulture on the outskirts of town providing delicious options for wine enthusiasts, beautiful beaches and artist enclaves as well as any type of cuisine you could imagine with fresh food in abundance. While some towns respond to their growth by expanding indefinitely, Santa Barbara has exercised thoughtful restraint and in doing so, preserved the area's quaint and pastoral charm. For a relatively small town, Santa Barbara has so much to offer and it's location is convenient enough to Los Angeles for it to be practical for a destination wedding while also feeling worlds away from the hustle and bustle of an actual big city. 

Santa Barbara Venues We Love

As Santa Barbara wedding photographers, we are fortunate to have experienced firsthand, the extreme diversity this corner of the California coast has to offer. From a luxury spa wedding just a stone's throw from the Pacific at Ritz Carlton Bacara  to an intimate, glamping-inspired wedding weekend at El Capitan Canyon. For a truly memorable affair at an iconic venue dating back to those early days of the silent film era, look no further than the Belmond El Encanto. Situated in the hills just east of the harbor, the venue offers expansive ocean views and lush garden paths throughout the properties seven gorgeous acres. And, like the Ritz Carlton, the spa and culinary offerings are amongst the finest. If you're working with an event planner who can help you bring your vision to life, the Santa Barbara Historical museum has a lovely open courtyard/plaza in the classic old California adobe style.

About Viera Photographics

Viera Photographics is a husband and wife wedding photography team located in Sonoma, California. They specialize in telling stories through their style of wedding photojournalism and candid documentary wedding photography. In business since 2005 they are considered to be one of the top high-end wedding photographers. Their unique wedding photographic style emphasizes stylish storytelling with raw emotion. They bring impeccable and unmatched customer service on every level.

Jaime, Dennis and their team are available worldwide with no travel fees. They travel often photographing weddings all over the world. Some of their top destinations are: Napa, San Francisco, Tahoe, Big Sur, Los Angeles, San Diego, Santa Barbara, New York, Newport, Rhode Island, Vermont, Mexico, and Hawaii.

Viera Photographics

[email protected]
Santa Barbara, CA
(707) 934-4007

Featured Santa Barbara weddings

A Belmond El Encanto Wedding // Ashley and Patrick

bride and groom at Belmond El Encanto wedding

Ashley and Patrick’s Belmond El Encanto wedding continues a family tradition that spans four generations of life and love in the Santa Barbara community. Back when her grandparents tied the knot at Belmond El Encanto, the venue had few neighbors and the hills were sparsely populated, yet this “American Riviera” as was being marketed, was just as enchanting as it is today. Patrick and Ashley’s classic Santa Barbara wedding brought together multiple generations, new friends, and extended families in a community they have given so much to. Ashley’s parents founded the UC Santa Barbara Koegel Autism Center and there is no end in site to their family legacy as the bride and groom work in Pediatric Oncology and Internal Medicine, respectively. So, in addition to being a ridiculously gorgeous couple, they also have the intelligence and compassion to make a difference in our world…and we think that’s worth celebrating!  About the couple How we met We went to medical school together at Stanford (with with Adriana and Ro!) and became best friends. We bonded over our love for Southern California, music, snowboarding, and our families… we began dating shortly after that. We traveled to Boston together for residency and have been living there for 3 years now before we return to San Francisco to work at UCSF next year. Most important for your day My dream is for all of the people that we love and care about to be in the same place at the same time to celebrate our love. Describe the day and any important details The wedding day was perfect, weather-wise with cobalt blue skies and a sea breeze that seemed to show up at just the right times. The ceremony took place around the Belmond El Encanto’s arbor and lily pond in the presence of… Continue Reading

A Camarillo Ranch wedding // Julie and John

A Camarillo Ranch wedding // Julie and John

  “We have been together for over 7 years so we have known for a while that we would get married, but taking the vow to become family created a bond between us that we didn’t know could exist!” – Julie You could see the excitement in Julie’s face, she had been waiting for this day for almost a decade. It was really important to them to create a day that reflected them perfectly as a couple for their Camarillo Ranch wedding. So every detail was handmade, and the whole family was involved from the bridal shows, to the tastings, to the assembly lines gluing, printing, cutting, sewing, the invitations – even John and Julie’s Dad braved the long days being the only men in the room. (I am so impressed by the list of DIY’s that I have included them below for some inspiration!)  My absolute favorite DIY project of the day was John’s song to Julie. John is a very talented musician (one of the more well known bands he plays in is Tenacious D) and music is very important in his life. So he recorded their first dance song, she knew he did it, but hadn’t heard it until the night. He played every single instrument and sang. It was such a sweet moment to see both of their faces on the dance floor. There was a whole lotta love in that room! I think sometimes weddings get overwhelming for people and it is hard not to get caught up in making sure all the hard work is being executed perfectly on the day. It is hard not to get upset when something just doesn’t work out right after all those months of planning (and especially in Julie and John’s case as they did nearly everything themselves!) Julie and… Continue Reading

A Bacara Resort and Spa wedding // Panthea and Ben

 Panthea and Ben’s beautiful Bacara Resort and Spa wedding brought us to the edge of one of California’s most beautiful corners. Just north of the town of Santa Barbara in the town of Goleta, the resort offers everything one could offer, including it’s own beach access villas designed in classic spanish. Santa Barbara wedding photography is memorable in it’s own ways but what we’ll remember most about Panthea and Ben’s day was their constant, smiling faces. Despite their luxurious Santa Barbara wedding, the mood of the day was laid-back, light and fun. As Panthea prepared for the ceremony, the boys played ping-pong and after the ceremony we hopped on a golf cart with the couple as they quickly nourished themselves with some tasty sliders. The only time their smiles took a break was when Ben first saw Panthea coming down the aisle in her work-of-art dress. His tightly pursed lips revealed the strain in holding back tears of pure joy. It was never hard capturing sweet moments between the two – they truly are are each other’s best friend. Continue Reading