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Are engagement Photos a good idea?

Are engagement Photos a good idea?

Ariana & Brett - Cesar Quijada Photography - 25If you make a quick search of “Engagement Pictures” on Google you’ll soon find threads and threads of people wondering if they’re necessary or not. To be honest, I don’t think it is the right question. People should be wondering, in my opinion, if they’re a good idea for them or not. Every couple is unique therefore every wedding is unique. What works for one couple does not necessarily work for another. Today I present a series of reasons why I think engagement photos are a good idea so you can decide for yourself.

But first, a quick definition:

“Engagement photos” is the name given to a series of photos (usually professional) a couple takes of themselves before their wedding. In theory, they’re done right after the couple gets engaged. How formal or casual these pictures are completely depends on the couple. Most of the times, the pictures are taken by the photographer hired to do the wedding pictures.

Now that that’s out of the way, I’ll explain why I think having your engagement pictures taken is a good idea:

They are a way of announcing your engagement

Some people send them to the local newspaper, others use them on their “save the date” or even their wedding invitations. Even if a wedding invitation with pictures is not your cup of tea, you can certainly use them to update your profiles on social networks. They will certainly look better than your average Facebook photo.

Yesenia & Michael - Cesar Quijada Photography - 27A chance to get acquainted with the photographer

“Engagement Photos” are a great way to get to know your photographer and, also very important, for him or her to get to know you! A professional photographer will take the time to talk to you and your partner. He’ll study your angles and find the best possible way to make you feel comfortable. You’ll feel more relaxed on the day of your wedding if you’ve already had a positive experience with the photographer.

Test Run

Aside from getting to know your photographer, some brides see this photo shoot as an opportunity to test run their hair and make up. It is not the same thing to see yourself on the mirror than on a photograph.

It is fun!

Yesenia & Michael - Cesar Quijada Photography - 31A photo shoot is a fun and different activity that you and your partner can engage in. It is a chance for you and your loved one to take an afternoon off and celebrate yourselves.


People who say that “Engagement Photos” are a waste of time, are thinking of the “now” and not on the long run. Wedding photos are nice, but we don’t necessarily walk around in suits and long dresses everyday now do we? Engagement photos tend to capture a more “natural” side of the couple.

These are probably the best moments in a person’s life, wouldn’t you want to capture them in the best way possible?

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Ancient Wedding Traditions from around the World

Ancient Wedding Traditions from around the World

3f09da08419c3225169a834b9f785c5a_1M.pngAs empires throughout history have risen and fallen so have our spiritual beliefs, our clothing, transportation methods and languages, but there are certain elements that remain the same in the evolution of civilization. Marriage is one of them.

In one form or another, weddings have existed in every major society throughout history. Some of these traditions may seem crazy to our contemporary standards. For example, did you know that Spartan brides had to dress up as men the evening before their wedding? Bellow you’ll find a list of some of the most curious ancient wedding traditions from around the world.


The charivari (also known as chivaree or shivaree) is an old tradition that started in the middle ages. It goes as follows, friends of the bride and groom would go to the couple’s house on the first night as a married and make a fuss. Eventually, it would get so loud that the couple had no option, but to receive the unannounced visit and give them something to drink. This tradition is still practiced in France.

Ancient Rome

There was an actual law in ancient Rome that required 10 people to dress like the bride and groom on the wedding day. This was believed to confuse any evil spirit who might have wanted to curse the couple. A theory suggests that this started the tradition of having bridesmaids and groomsmen dress in the same way.


Brides in Sparta were required to shave their heads and dress as men before their future husbands kidnapped them.


Back in the 17th century, Scottish grooms gave their brides a brooch called the Luckenbooth as a sign of their love. The pin represented a crowned heart or two intertwined hearts made out of silver. It was also given to new mothers and babies to protect them from the evil eye. The brooch is still popular today.


Irish men used to give their future wives a bracelet woven out of human hair. The bracelet was a symbol of their everlasting connection.


In some parts of this Asian country, people did not wear wedding rings on their fingers; instead they wore them on their toes. The rings were inserted on the second toe of each foot. Some men also wore them on their big toes.

Ancient WeddingAncient Greece

Ancient Greeks had a three-day long wedding celebration. The first day was called Proaulia and it was when women spent their last day with their female relatives preparing for the wedding. The second day was called Gamos, which was the actual marriage ritual. It started with the sacrifice of an animal to the gods. And then the last day was called Epaulia, a celebration similar to current bridal showers.

Yunnan Province, China

For the Lahu people, the society of this Chinese province, was common place to be bald. In fact, the only people who were allowed to have hair were single girls. After the wedding was celebrated, the women’s heads were completely shaved leaving only one lock of hair behind. The lock was referred to as hunmao or “hair of the soul”. Nowadays this ritual is rarely practiced.

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Why do dogs look like their owners?

Why do dogs look like their owners?

It is somewhat of a myth in popular culture and a constant punch line in movies and cartoons, but recent studies have shown that dogs and owners that look alike are not a myth (it might still be a joke), and the reason why may surprise you.

Pet PhotographySeveral researches in various countries have tried to debunk and/or confirm this theory and their results have been surprising. Recently in Japan, a study was conducted where test subjects were shown several pictures of human and dogs’ faces. The backgrounds and bodies were removed from the photos. Then they were asked to pair the dog to their respective owners. More often than not, the volunteers guessed correctly. Then the same researchers went as far as to cover the entire faces of both owners and dogs, leaving only the eyes exposed. People still managed to successfully pair them up 75% of the time.

Another study conducted in the 90’s asked several women to choose the breed of dog they preferred. They were shown four pictures of four different breeds of dogs and asked which one they preferred. Most women with long hair that covered their ears chose dogs with lop ears (long) and women who had short hair tended to choose dogs with pricked ears (short).

Scientists have found explanation to these outcomes in a psychological phenomenon called the mere-exposure effect. The mere-exposure effect is a psychological effect in which people tend to, unconsciously, choose elements that they’re familiar with. If our brain is acquainted with it, and we’re still alive, then it means that it is safe and therefore will grant our survival. If we think about it, dogs aren’t (most of the time) randomly assigned to people. They’re chosen by their future keepers. The concept also explains why we like to watch the same movies and listen to the same songs over and over again. The mere-exposure effect is not to be confused with nostalgia, that’s a different thing. Other humans are also affected by this kind of circumstance. Studies have proven that we tend to choose as friends and potential romantic partners people who share similar genes to ours.

BRITAIN/There might also be other reasons to why dogs look like their owners. It has also been proven that dogs tend to imitate their owners’ facial expressions. For them it is a matter of life and death. They depend on our caring for them to have shelter and food. Being empathetic to their owners’ feelings, secures the dogs’ survival. Dogs are also affected by their owners’ lifestyles, which often leads to more similarities. Overweight humans more often than not own overweight dogs in the same way that a smoker might give their pet health issues like coughing, asthma and even lung cancer.

So next time you go hiking and spot a person and their dog that should belong in a look-a-like contest, you’ll know that it is not your brain playing tricks on you – They actually look like each other!