A colleague of mine from the Arizona State University school newspaper, the State Press, asked me to photograph her SLS Las Vegas wedding. I love it when old friends get in touch to have me photograph their weddings – so I jumped at the chance. I love the desert in the spring. The Sayers Club at the SLS Las Vegas is a private event space and bar – they host concerts and other events, and sometimes weddings. We were treated with a ceremony at the same time as the sun set over the world’s largest gift shop across the street – and I couldn’t resist capturing the reflection in the big gorgeous SLS windows. You might recognize the officiant, by the way – I photographed his wedding years ago in Tempe, AZ. This is my first wedding of 2017 – turns out an SLS Las Vegas wedding is a glamorous way to kick off the season.
Chris and Mark were married in Alameda this summer and followed up their beachfront wedding with an East Bay wedding reception in the hills overlooking Oakland and San Francisco. I stepped out to the patio just ahead of them, as they arrived with close family before their guests, and snapped this shot of locals picking out landmarks amongst the clouds for friends in from out of town. A friend of the family agreed to let them use her home for their celebration; the view of the dual cityscapes from this East Bay wedding reception was unforgettable. Italian Colors in nearby Montclair catered the dinner.
McKaley and Jake had a beautiful Loveland wedding ceremony last weekend, at the McC Ranch just outside of Fort Collins, Colorado.
McKaley is my cousin; that’s my uncle Scott in the photo, saying goodbye to her as she leaves for the first look at Bobcat Ridge Natural Area. Some of the wedding photos that I love the best happen in and around cars, at the inflection points that happen as we travel through the wedding day. You can see a gorgeous saturated blue sky behind Scott’s shoulder; we enjoyed a mix of rain and bright sunshine cascading over the Rockies on this wedding day, and the clouds cleared just as we pulled up to Bobcat Ridge.
Anna and Brett and I took some Germany football jerseys and beer to China Beach and climbed on the rocks at sunset for their San Francisco engagement session.
They met in San Francisco while watching a World Cup game as they cheered on their favourite team. It was windy but bright, sunny, and a truly picturesque view; a few other photos from this session feature the Golden Gate Bridge prominently in the background. I’m delighted to be flying to Berlin next summer with them to photograph their wedding. I’m also grateful that they were such good sports about rock climbing on the beach.
In between, we snuck back to their place in North Beach to celebrate their San Francisco wedding on the roof with a glass of champagne.
They live directly across the street from a former wedding client of mine – it’s such a small world in San Francisco!
We were connected by my friend Mike Byrne – an excellent photographer and first assistant. I’m shooting his wedding later this summer.
See more from this rooftop, more from the Swedenborgian, more from The Chapel, and more lovely people drinking all sorts of things, including champagne, at this link: http://www.movephotography.com/Wedding-Selections/Wedding-At-The-Chapel-San-Franci/
Here’s an image from Mitzi & Jake’s Rockridge engagement session in the Oakland hills a few years ago.
We shot around Rockridge, the neighborhood where I met my own beautiful wife, and then drove up to Skyline on a whim. That’s their car’s headlights through the fog in the background. It was cold, but the views were stunning and the atmosphere was electric.
Engagement sessions are tricky for me; my background is in newspaper photojournalism, and I pride myself on my documentary coverage of weddings. It’s hard for me to showcase my skills at capturing candid, honest moments at fundamentally posed engagement sessions, but it’s also an opportunity for me to explore graphic and artistic components of photography.
Also, some news: as of 8 days ago, I’m a father. Two weeks before that, I accepted a job on the product photography team at Stitch Fix Inc. I’m very excited to continue to photograph weddings; I’ll be taking fewer commissions each year so that I may focus more on my clients.
Here’s one more from the same wedding; Chelsea wanted to make sure this adorable ring bearer tried the cake after a day of running around Domaine Chandon and B Cellars. This is in the wine cave at their B Cellars wedding reception.
Chelsea and E were married today and this was taken at the end of her wedding preparations, at Vanity for Guys and Dolls in downtown Napa. She’s fresh from hair and makeup at the Napa salon and just finished putting on her dress. That’s her dog, Chef, at the bottom right. They had a morning wedding on the glorious lawn at Domaine Chandon, and a private lunch reception a few minutes up the road at B Cellars.
I don’t do this often, as I like to think that after 6 years as a wedding photographer, I’ve honed down my camera kit to the essentials. But I just picked up a 90mm tilt shift lens and have begun bringing it along to weddings. It lets me employ selective focus like what I’ve done above, which is impossible with a normal lens. Tilt shift lenses are tricky to use but wonderful and unique, especially for candids. They allow me greater control over where the viewer’s eye goes. I’ll be posting more photos taken with this lens in the future. This particular dress is hanging from a staircase in a farmhouse in Mendocino; that’s the bride’s brother coming down the stairs.
I’ve been going back to my roots a bit as a wedding photographer. I began as a photojournalist with an interest in how people move about the world – hence the name, “move photography”. I forgot all about this motion for a few years as I held myself to higher and higher standards for technically perfect photos without any blur whatsoever – but lately, I’ve been loving it. Here are a bride and groom on their way out of their exquisitely planned wedding reception to enjoy a private moment together.