PRO PHOTOGRAPHER TIP: Ban heels from photoshoots. Just kidding. Well, only a little. Katherine and Jason flew all the way from El Paso, Texas to elope in one of the most beautiful city halls in San Francisco, CA. Kat was just glowing as the most beautiful bride in her layered lace dress and minimalist nude heels. But take off those heels, and behold - a whole new person with the brightest laughs, the cutest smiles, and the sweetest embraces! (I mean, look at all those stairs we had to climb!) I love that these two sweethearts passed by each other in their high school hallways never knowing that they would one day be MARRIED to each other - funny how life works right?! Happy 4 1/2 years together, and many more happy years to come!
If these photos don't scream romance, you've got no soul. This beautiful cliffside spot in Big Sur has been Brian and Candice's secret hideaway for the last 7 years. Each year, they return to where they fell in love to picnic atop the coastal bluffs. This year, he had an extra special surprise for her.
Behind the scenes, their very excited photographer arrived to the unmarked turnout (only recognizable because of the GPS coordinates he had sent her) and wondered if the only other car (with an adorable dog in it, waiting patiently for its owner) that was parked could be theirs. They had agreed to meet at 4 PM, but the photographer wondered if the couple had headed out first. That seemed like the likely situation, right? There was no cell service of course, so she walked out to the path to find two diverging paths - one was blocked by some tangled brush but seemed to be the main path. Upon closer look, the photographer noticed an arrow drawn in the dirt pointing right. So she ventured onward, following the arrow, until she stumbled upon a very, very narrow, downhill path, and just beyond it - silhouettes of two lovers picnicking at the end of the path.
(After the session, Brian told me that he had pretended to go back for the dog, put the tangled brush there, drawn the arrow in the dirt, and even wrote a note for me, which flew away, hoping that I would be able to find my way there. He was just a bit worried. But the proposal - and the sunset - was certainly one of the most beautiful ones I had witnessed yet - so worth the trek.)
Milk Tea, Sushi, and Giant Robots. That is what you think of when you think of Taiwan and Japan right? Well this past Christmas break, we broke those stereotypes (well except the milk tea one) in our amazing Taiwan and Japan trip! Check out our itinerary below for things to do, places to eat, and tips for travel.
When you spend the holidays with family in Taiwan and Japan and your brother says he asks you to photograph his proposal in Japan...the answer is of course yes! These two dragged themselves out of bed for an early morning trek out to the forest, as we knew that it would become crowded quickly. We stood in the quiet, peaceful silence of the forest hearing nothing but the whistling of the wind as it weaved through the tall bamboo stalks rising above our heads. As we walked on the path, the snow started to fall in the most magical way to make for the perfect proposal. Welcome to the family Bess!
When Ellie and Sami of Wilder Events approached me to photograph redwoods forest styled elopement in the Santa Cruz mountains, I couldn't resist the opportunity to collaborate with such amazing vendors! Could you guess that this was just on the UC Santa Cruz campus? With the location picked on the fly, we had such a beautiful array of details, from the florist to the calligrapher. Plus, this real life couple were just too adorable! So if you need inspiration for your own redwoods forest elopement, check out the rest of the session below!
Alright, who has the best blind date story to tell? These two met 8 years ago...and it wasn't the romantic movie ending at all. They parted ways, never expecting that years later, they would reconnect and fall in love. In the middle of a storm, braving the roaring waves in a little dingy, he proposed on the tiny island of Sandy Spit in the British Virgin Islands. Though their original plans to marry on the island fell through with Hurricane Irma, they tied the knot in the sweetest, intimate Christmas City Hall wedding.
Lessons learned: One year olds do not particularly like 60 degree weather. But with a quick deadline for Christmas cards and not exactly a lot of time to get a quick family session in, this beautiful multicultural family braved the wind chill for a golden hour session at a local park in San Jose. Though these might not scream holiday photos with Christmas trees, blankets, or string lights, I have to say that I don't quite mind it! So if anyone else wants to throw out tradition for a fun session that you can use year-round (this was also their annual family session), don't hesitate to hit me up!
When our apartment complex announced a holiday door decorating contest, we immediately raided our craft closet to see what we could make. With leftover rope and artificial flowers recyled from our wedding arch, ribbons from a few floral projects, string lights, and wooden letters from a party, we made this boho macrame Christmas wreath to bring in the holiday spirit!
When you live in California and fall basically means dead trees and grass (and not beautiful autumn leaves), the struggle is real. So when Jessica approached me wanting to surprise Austin with a photo session for their one year anniversary, I wasn't sure what we'd find with the weather changing the landscape so quickly. But hey, the photographer's job is to make anything work, so we adventured out to see what we could find, and happened to stumble upon the most awesome tree nest! Whoever built this fort around a fallen tree trunk, thank you!! With the last light disappearing from the forest, we couldn't have found a more perfect spot for these two lovebirds.
P.S. Just because you aren't engaged doesn't mean you can't have awesome photos!
Imagine walking into the living room to find a dog with a tuxedo bowtie chasing down your camera lens, weaving between three children running around half dressed in casual wear and half dressed in formal wear, and pulling back a sea of white drapery to find the most beautiful, elegant flower arrangement and aisle lined with lanterns and candles. This was the definition of the most perfect, backyard elopement.
Between the daughter zipping up her mother's dress, the bride and groom reading poems to their children, the children running up before the kiss and asking why mom was crying during the ceremony, the gifts the children presented to celebrate their joined family, the dogs interrupting every scene to make sure they were in the family photos, the officiant guiding the oldest son to sign the marriage certificate, and the cake-smeared face of the groom (first by the bride, then of course by the children), I couldn't imagine a more precious, beautiful ceremony for this family. The stunning details so carefully planned out juxtaposed with all the laughter and jokes made every moment so memorable. They couldn't feel more at home, and it truly showed how much this day meant to them as a family. Check out the rest of the backyard elopement below!