Just like any boy meets girl story, this starts with… You guessed it… A boy who meets a girl… Not just any boy and girl… A Rocker Boy and a Ballerina to be exact. The year, 2011. The month, August. The place, an online dating website. 

Out of pure curiousity our heros engage in typical flirting with each other. Online flirting that lead to the legendary first date. Not knowing what to expect, the Rocker Boy and Ballerina met for the first time. After establishing that he was not a serial killer and she not a call girl, they clicked. A night of laughter, high fives and red meat. Perfect. The end? Not even close. They wanted more… Thus the second date was planned.. And the third, forth, fith and so forth. He wrote a song for her to ask her out, seeing that he could sort of play guitar and write music. She was hoping he would just ask her out already. Driving with his guitar in his car he waited for the perfect moment, but alas… The hopeless romantic could not hold out any more and in the wee hours of the morning of the 9th of October 2011 he asked her out. She cried and said yes! December 2011 she decided that she really liked his face and he moved in with her. Did not have to ask him twice. Now we fast forward to 10 October 2015 at 14h50. He asks her to marry him and with no hesitation she says yes! This story reaches its second milestone on the 9th of April 2016 as these two soul mates embark on their new journey as Mr and Mrs Botha. Coming back from honeymoon, they brought along a surprize… Low and behold their love manifested in the third and latest addition of their newly formed family. To be continued…

This is the story of how Chrizanja and Riaan met. Two beautiful souls. Different, Unconventional, loving and DEFINITELY meant for each other.

I was REALLY excited to shoot their wedding, like it was a family members wedding. The had to get married more than a year earlier, but decided to wait a while. I was actually very sad about this wedding not happening at the time because they are clearly meant for each other. But we kept in touch, and when the call came to say: “We are getting married again, are you available” I was over the moon.

They decided to get married at Chrizanja’s aunt’s house in Pretoria, I was skeptical at first, until I met the aunt and saw what they are going to do. This was perfect for them, so different, so unique, just the way they are. One of the most special and beautiful weddings I have ever attended.

We did the photoshoot at the same park where Riaan asked her to marry him.

But the most special for me was the penguin and pebble story? Confused?

Let me explain…

They call each other “Penguin”

A Penguin mates for life. When he decided who is the right female penguin for him the male penguin look for a beautiful pebble, he present it to the female penguin, if she accepts it, she is hers. Riaan did the same, he went to the beach, looked for the most beautiful pebble, and presented it to Chrizanja on their wedding, with some words on it of course.

This is the part that the minister incorporated in the ceremony about the penguin and the pebble:

“Humans give flowers and candy when wooing a lady. Penguins give rocks. Not just any rocks, though — male penguins search through piles of pebbles to find the smoothest, most perfect ones. When a penguin has selected his pebble, he presents it to his intended companion. If she approves, she puts the pebble in her nest.

Riaan and Chrizanja – You are each other’s Penguins’. Soulmates. So in light of your “Penguin-ship” we will now proceed with the Pebble Ceremony

  • Riaan, do you have your pebble?
  • Present Chrizanja with your pebble symbolising your eternal love and commitment
  • Chrizanja, do you accept his pebble?

Chrizanja, take this pebble home and keep it as a sign of your commitment and make this part of your foundation for your home and family”

Isn’t this just awesome?

I love you guys

Photographer: JC Crafford