Top Rated Santa Barbara Wedding Photographers

“My wife and I hired Kiel for the elopement package. In short, he was terrific. After suggesting a few ideas of what we were looking for, Kiel proposed a bunch of great venues to take shots at. He was a joy to work with, and was very flexible for our wishes. Highly recommend!~ Jibraun Ruiz, June, 11th, 2017.

“Kiel is AMAZING! We hired Kiel to shoot our multi-day wedding celebration in Northern California. We had events planned over multiple days that I wanted photographed and he did a tremendous job. He used the down time in the days leading up to the wedding to scout locations and look for the best lighting. He helped us set up the wedding arch so it would have the best lighting for photos during the ceremony. As a fellow photographer, pictures were really important to me. Kiel did a great job in making sure everything was lined up. Because our wedding was over a long weekend where everyone was staying together, we really wanted to create a community feel. We brought Kiel into our celebration and he immediately befriended everyone. It was so great to see and I think it really paid off in the end because all our guests were really relaxed and excited when he was coming around the taking pictures of them.

Kiel is so much fun to work with. He is up beat, positive, fun, knowledgeable and professional. You end up spending a lot of your wedding day with your photographer so having someone who is fun and easy, that feels like another friend makes the experience way more enjoyable–especially so for people who may not like having their pictures taken. Kiel made the couple, family and bridal party photos so fun and was very efficient in moving people into position.

Kiel did a great job of creating some images that I had in my head that I wanted and also used his artful eye to capture my husband and I in ways I couldn’t have imagines. He is a true artist.

We decided that having a second shooter would be best for our wedding due to the large venue and number of people. The person Kiel brought with him was just as wonderful to be around which was a huge plus. It was great to have them both there because they were able to document different things at the same time. For example the hair and make up people were really late getting me ready. Kiel had budgeted ample time for the pre-ceremony pictures but due to me being over an hour late we didn’t get to take photos of my husband and I in all the locations I wanted. It could have been a stressful situation but Kiel was super professional in handling it, making sure we got the first look, family and bridal party. We snuck away during dinner to take more photos. He made us feel better about it by talking about how great the light is that time of day (and it is much nicer). He also got us back by the time everyone was finishing up. AND his second shooter was around to document the dinner festivities.

Of course we got back from the wedding and I could barely wait for the photos to come back. Within a week Kiel had sneak peak images for us. I was thinking he would give up something like 5 or 10 like I have seen from other friend’s weddings. Kiel gave us a bunch. It was so fun to relive the moments. Can’t wait to see the rest.

If you are looking for a talented photographer and an amazing person to spend time with, Kiel is your man. ~ Sierra Stevens-McGeever, June 27th, 2017.

“I have been in the wedding photography industry for nine years now and I can easily say that Kiel is one of the best in California. His shot selection and diversity is truly amazing and his observation of natural light is inspiring. It is safe to say that if you can have Kiel as your wedding photographer, then you are in more than good hands. ~ Eric Roland, November 29th, 2016.

“Kiel did both our engagement photo shoot and our wedding, and my husband and I couldn’t be happier! The photos are absolutely gorgeous! Kiel does an amazing job of capturing the light in such a way that his photos absolutely glow! He has a definite eye and a beautifully natural style. He captures the natural beauty of both the couple and their surroundings, whether the wedding be inside or outside. Kiel is professional and is able to take gorgeous photos without needing constant direction. Throughout our entire planning process he got back to me quickly whenever I had questions and was always very accommodating. If you are ever searching for an amazing wedding photographer, look no farther because Kiel is definitely it!” ~ Alyssa Leyva, July 28th, 2016.

“If we could give Kiel more than 5 stars, we would. He does not just take pretty pictures. There are poetics in his point of view, the way he captures the light and the moment to help tell your story. These are not your same tired wedding shots. Kiel is where wedding photography is headed. We feel honored and gifted to have had the opportunity to work with him before his talent pulls him out of our reach. Not only is Kiel a fantastic photographer but he is the kind of person you would like at your wedding. He was wonderful with our families, patient and gracious, but still got his shot. Kiel made wonderful efforts to get to know us long before our wedding day. Because of this, we both felt extremely comfortable with him and knew he understood our vision completely. Our engagement pictures were phenomenal and our family and friends were very impressed with Kiel’s talent. He is genuine, authentic, professional, warm, and an all around amazing person. We recommend him very highly. Thank you Kiel!” ~ Anna & Stephen Jones, May 22nd, 2015

“Long story short, Kiel is not only an amazing photographer but an amazing person with a great presence. Life has a way of aligning things how they should be and this totally happened for my husband Jake, I and Kiel. The end result was amazing. He captured the magic of my dress and the wedding and when I saw the results I cried tears of joy!! We received numerous compliments about him from our wedding party and guests and knew that he was meant to be there for us on such a momentous day. The story: We first reached out to several photographers in Santa Barbara and Los Angeles. Kiel was over our budget but just in my interaction with him I guaranteed to refer him in the future! He was that great! So we decided on a more affordable photographer but long story short, two photographers ended up flaking on us and the last one the night before our wedding. (Never skimp on such an important part of your wedding) I remember having such a pleasant experience communicating with Kiel so on a whim I left a voice mail for him at around 8AM the morning of my wedding. About 30 minutes later he called me and said he was on his way down from San Francisco from shooting another wedding and would be happy to be my knight in shining armor!! You can only imagine my stress level that morning. Kiel came to our rescue, allowed us to relax, he is great at making you feel comfortable in front of the camera and just has this presence that you can’t describe. I should have known that from our first communication he was the one. Turns out he even knew a lot of our close family guests. Just as I knew my husband was the one…..I should have known Kiel was the one but the universe made it so anyway and I am so happy the stars aligned. I highly recommend Kiel. Great photographers are hard to come by, but it is even more hard to find one that understands your relationship and how it should be portrayed and can make everyone feel comfortable. Choose Kiel!! Your Search Ends Here!!” ~Isa & Jake Muñoz, December 19th, 2014

“I had the pleasure of having Kiel photograph our wedding last September. He did our engagement photos several months prior and they were amazing, so I knew the photos would be good. What I got after the wedding was nothing short of incredible. I received over a thousand edited, frame-worthy photos. There are so many good photos that I cannot even pick which ones to print. What we received was the perfect array of artistic, practical, candid and group photos that look absolutely stunning. He did a great job of photographing everyone who was in attendance at the wedding without even feeling like he was there. To top things off, all of my guests loved him and could not say better things about him. He is truly one of the best photographers out there and I would recommend him for any event or style of shot. I hope to find a reason to use him as our photographer again. I truly cannot say enough good things about him and his business. He is amazing!” ~ Lauren Wood, Bride

“I recently had the pleasure of having Kiel photograph our wedding in September.  He did our engagement photos several months back and they were amazing, so I knew the photos would be good.  What I got after the wedding was nothing short of incredible. I received over a thousand edited frame-worthy photos.  What we received was the perfect array of artistic, practical, candid and group photos that look absolutely stunning.  He did a great job of photographing everyone who was in attendance at the wedding without even feeling like he was there.  To top things off, all of my guests loved him and could not say better things about him.  He is truly one of the best photographers out there and I would recommend him for any event or style of shot.  I hope to find a reason to use him as our photographer again.  I truly cannot say enough good things about him and his business.  He is amazing!” – Lauren Wood, Bride

more reviews of kiel rucker photography. . .

e. kiel@kielrucker.com | p. 805-770-7733