Ysa + David | California Wedding Photographer | Marissa Merrill Photography

Ysa + David’s Southern California wedding was such a blast to photograph. Traveling for weddings is something I have always dreamed of doing and I cant help but feel like this day was just the beginning of something amazing!

Ysa and David reached out to me at the beginning of last year about their engagement session. After shooting their engagement photos they decided to book me as their wedding photographer (yay yay!!). At the time, they were getting married in Texas, but later in the year they decided to change their wedding to be in California and I was STOKED. 

California is one of my favorite places in the whole world. Mainly because of the weather but also because of all the BEAUTIFUL scenery. Ysa + Davids wedding day was at the STUNNING Green Gables Estates in San Marcos California. I was speechless from the first moment I arrived. The getting ready rooms were perfection, the outdoor ceremony space was to DIE for, and the reception decor was spot on.

I loved every minute of this California wedding day, and im so lucky to have been their photographer. But now, you guys know the drill, its time to hear from the bride and groom themselves! Enjoy the sweet words that Ysa + David shared about their day! 

Detail photo of ring bearer pillow
Detail photo of lace details at vintage California wedding day
Wedding rings in light leak on wedding day
Bridal bouquet detail photo on vintage wedding day in California
Green gables wedding estate getting ready building
California wedding stationary detail photo with red flowers
Bride getting ready in bridal room with bridesmaid
Bride and bridesmaids wedding dresses hanging up in getting ready room
Brides wedding dress hanging in getting ready room
Bride getting florals put in her hair before her wedding ceremony
Bride getting her curly hair styled on her wedding day
Bride and bridal party getting ready in maroon bridal robes on California wedding day
bride and bridesmaids hanging out in adorable getting ready robes
Groom putting on wedding tie before ceremony starts
Brides grandma and mom helpingg her put on her wedding dress before her ceremony starts
Bride looking in the mirror before her wedding begins
Brides family getting dressed before wedding ceremony in California
Bride sitting in light leak while waiting for wedding ceremony to start
Bride waiting for wedding ceremony to start
Bride playing with adorable flower girl before wedding ceremony starts
Moody black and white photo of bride hugging her flower girl
Flower girl hugging her mom before wedding ceremony starts
Bride sitting in light leak before ceremony
Moody black and white bridal photo taken before California wedding ceremony at green gables estates
Father daughter first look at Green Gables wedding estates
Bride and father saying a prayer before he walks her down the aisle in California
Moody black and white of father daughter first look on wedding day
Brides dad holding back tears before he walks her down the aisle
Moody black and white of bride and dads first look
Bride crying while seeing her father for the first time before they walk down the aisle


We met in July of 2015, on the boardwalk in Carlsbad, CA while David was stationed in Oceanside in Camp Pendleton. We haven’t stopped talking since! From Good morning to Goodnight, we were talking all day long for at least two months straight.

David and I met a few times on base within those two months, and he told me he was going on leave to see his family in August. I was so sad, I didn’t want him to go, because I realized I felt calm and happy any time I  was with him. That’s when I knew he was the one for me! We talked about the future together often and we knew we wanted each other in it. David one day said that he was going to Texas after he got out from the Marines and asked me to come with him. Obviously I said yes!

Fast forward to August 2018, I had stayed the summer in Cali while David went back to Texas to work and get our living accommodations ready after getting out of the military. Little did I know he had bought my ring in May of 2018 in Texas. In August, we hosted a little “going away” party for me since I was moving to Texas with david (secretly an engagement party) . He proposed in front of all my family in a small Italian restaurant in my hometown!

Bridesmaids and bride take moody photo together at Green gables wedding estate
Boho bridal party in red dresses taking a photo
Candid bridal party photo
Groomsmen wedding photo before ceremony begins
Groom and groomsmen taking a photo together before ceremony
Bride walking down the aisle with her dad
Young flower girl getting distracted as she walks down the aisle on wedding day
Brides dad walking her down the aisle on their wedding day
Bride walking down the aisle on her wedding day
Groom crying as his bride walks down the aisle
Groom holding back tears during his California wedding ceremony
Bride kissing her dad before she stands at the altar
Bride standing at the altar looking at her soon to be husband
Bride and groom exchanging rings at their wedding ceremony in California
Bride reading vows to her groom on their California wedding day


// Ysa’s Answer

David has always been inclusive and caring since the first day we met. Since when we started talking, I felt connected with him. I knew I wanted to marry David when he asked me to move to Texas with him. He technically never asked, BUT he told me he wanted me in his future. We had been dating for a while, and his contract in the military had been coming to an end. He knew he wanted to move back to Texas after he got out, and when he told me, I started crying. When I told him that I was sad he wanted to move away, he said “Well of course I want you to come with me DUH!”. I was all in, and then I was crying because he had included ME in HIS future. Happy tears, of course.

// David’s Answer

Ysabella is real and not judgemental. She never judged me when we met. We had different upbringings in our pasts, and not once did she judge me or make me feel bad for being me. She was always for “us”. When we first started dating, she offered to do all my laundry every week and she also offered to cook me dinners any chance she got after I got off of work. She brought all sorts of pots and pans of food to the barracks when we were first dating. She showed me love, and I knew with her commitment and love that we would be great for each other.

Beautiful altar in California for traditional wedding day
Groom reading vows to his bride on their wedding day
Groom emotionally reading his vows on wedding day
Bride and groom doing a sand ceremony on their wedding day
Bride and groom pouring sand together during their wedding day
Brides grandma getting emotional during their ceremony
Bride and groom standing at green gables estates outdoor ceremony location
Bride and groom kissing for the first time on their wedding day
Bride and groom kissing at the end of their wedding ceremony
Bride and groom leaving their wedding ceremony excitedly
Bride and groom leaving their wedding ceremony in California smiling
Newly weds smile as they leave their California wedding ceremony at green gables estates
Bride and groom kiss as bridal party cheers them on


// Ysa’s Answer

David is a hard-worker, compassionate, and simply just has a heart of gold. He works incredibly hard to provide for me and to take care of me. Anytime my mother needed help with something around the house, he would fix it without having to ask twice. David proved to me that his heart is truly filled with love. He claims to not be emotional (yeah right), but he is filled with nothing but love. I love his sense of humor and that we can definitely be ourselves around each other. My heart and soul are peaceful when I’m around him!

// David’s Answer

My wife is silly, beautiful, smart, and just an all around caring person. We laugh together and I don’t have to pretend around her. She cares about me and makes it a point to make sure that I am taken care of. Whether it’s laundry, food, clothes, or pretty much anything else, she does everything she can to help, and it makes me feel loved.

Romantic photo of bride and groom standing close after their ceremony
Bride and groom kissing in the courtyard at green gables estates
moody image of bride and groom looking in opposite directions after ceremony
Bride and groom under veil in California on wedding day
Golden hour photo of bride and groom underneath brides veil
Bride and groom about to kiss while covered in wedding veil
Bride and groom kissing under wedding veil
Bride and groom showing off their boots after their wedding ceremony
Bride and groom pose in front of vintage pickup at wedding venue
Black and white of bride and groom about to kiss
Moody black and white image of bride and groom standing closely
Bride and groom kissing at golden hour at their wedding venue


// Ysa’s Answer

First waking up and for the majority of the morning, I was totally calm. I had stressed so much about all the California wedding planning, but when I woke up on the day of, I told myself to “let go and let God”. I was marrying my best friend! That, plus the fact that I knew I was taken care of by God and my loving family, is why I felt at peace ! As soon as we finished makeup, I started to feel giddy. I couldn’t wait to see my handsome groom (:

// David’s Answer

Anxious. The big day was finally here. I couldn’t wait to see Ysa in her dress and I was excited for her to officially be my wife.

Bride and groom entering their wedding reception at green gables estates in San Marcos California
Romantic photo of bride and grooms first dance
Bride and groom kissing during their first dance
Bride and groom kissing romantically during their first dance
Green gables wedding estates father daughter dance
Bride and groom sharing first dance and being romantic
Bride and groom sharing their first dance in front of large light up sign
Dad holding daughter close as they share a dance on her wedding day
Dad dancing with his daughter on their wedding day
Father daughter dance at being reception
Bride hugging her father during their wedding reception
Mother son dance on wedding day with emotional mother
Groom dancing with his mom on his wedding day
Bride and groom cutting the cake on their wedding day
Bride playfully shoving cake in grooms mouth on their wedding day
Groom taking off brides garter in a funny way during reception
Groom taking off brides garter without his hands
Groom taking off brides garter with his mouth, funny wedding photo
Funny garter toss on wedding day in California
Garter toss on wedding day in California
Bride dancing with grandma at wedding reception
Wedding guests enjoying wedding reception


// Ysa’s Answer

So I flew to California about 2 weeks before our wedding, without David. I hadn’t seen him for 16 days before our actual wedding day. My favorite part was finally getting to see David at the end of the aisle after 2 whole weeks of not seeing him. Nothing brought me more comfort or joy than first seeing my man at the beginning of our ceremony!

// David’s Answer

I can’t truly choose one part. I enjoyed hanging out with my guys in California before the wedding. My mom and I had a special moment before as well, which I knew meant a lot to her. I loved seeing Ysabella walk down the aisle. I told her repeatedly that I would not cry when I first saw her, and not to get her Hope’s up when I don’t cry at the wedding. When I saw her on the big day, I may or may not have shed a tear, or it was just really bad allergies that made my eyes water.

Bride and groom dancing in front of large light up letters
Wedding guests dancing in a train at the wedding reception
Bride and groom dancing at their California wedding reception
Green gables wedding estate reception space dane party bride and groom kissing
bride and groom golding each other and dancing at the end of their wedding day in California
Bride dancing with her hands in the air a their wedding reception


Kailey and Mason were absolute DREAM clients. It’s not often that two people are brave enough to have their wedding ceremony outside in the winter. But DANG, I’m so glad they chose to do that! I loved getting to capture their day and get to know this sweet couple in the process. I pray that their marriage is just as perfect as their wintery wedding was!

Makeup – Honey Lux Salon

Hair- Indigo Salon

Photography – Marissa Merrill Photography

Venue – Green Gables Estates

Decor and Flowers – Bluebell Florals

Cake – Cute Cakes

Dress – D’Angelo Couture Bridal