I was lucky enough to photograph not just one girl’s quinceaneara, but two! Sophia and Giovanna are cousins and best friends. I had never been to a quinceanera before, so I wasn’t quite sure what to expect. To my surprise, it is actually very similar to a wedding, there’s a girl in a beautiful gown who walks down the aisle with her “court” (her close friends, kind of like bridesmaids), then there’s a ceremony with a priest, traditions during the ceremony, an announcement, a father/daughter dance, speeches, cake, and more dancing. Only there is one big difference from a wedding, there is no male counterpart. This ceremony is to announce the coming out of a girl into womanhood. This is the first time the girl (technically) is allowed to wear high heals, this signifies that she is ready for men to start courting her. It’s a very beautiful tradition in the Latin culture. These two girls had me wiping away tears throughout the ceremony, especially when Giovanna turned to Sophia’s parents and said, “Thank you for having Sophia and giving me my best friend” Such maturity! Although these two girls seem very different, their bond is tight and their families even tighter. What a wonderful day we had welcoming in Sophia and Giovanna’s womanhood!