With their upcoming wedding in the beautiful redwoods, Ray and Carmen wanted to document their engagement somewhere different - so we adventured out to a beautiful park in San Jose (one of the rare hidden treasures I stumbled upon!) and chased the magical sunlight until sundown.
When you drive up the windy roads of Mt. Tam at 5 in the morning only to find that it is closed just that weekend, you make the most of what you got. But these two seriously rocked their motorcycle smoke bomb engagement, so I can't say I'm disappointed after all (more just a tiny bit jealous of how cool they are). With that, I must introduce this post by singing "These two are on fireeeee..."
So sometimes worlds collide and you find your awesome couple twin - these two, like us, met our senior years of high school, lived just down the street from each other, did the college long distance thing from Davis (Allison and I graduated just a year apart!) to the Bay Area (Chris and my husband Keith both studied business), and proposed in the city of San Francisco...plus we shared a mutual love for the outdoors and leaned a bit on the competitive side when our nerdy sides came out. So we were so excited to capture Allison and Chris's wedding as they celebrated a decade together by getting married at the dream venue Nestldown. It was truly a fairytale come to life, from the staircase leading down through the redwoods, to the elegant mirror welcome sign hand calligraphed by Allison herself, to the vintage Lincoln Town car that chauffeured them around. Congratulations A + C!!
When most people come to visit the city of San Francisco, they love taking photos in front of the Golden Gate Bridge - it is iconic after all. But for the few that venture out of the city, just across the bridge is a rugged coastal landscape reminiscent of Big Sur - rocky cliffsides, black sand beaches, and views for miles. That was just the kind of the landscape that Arielle and John came to see, having travelled all the way from New York to celebrate their one year anniversary.
5 AM wake-up call...totally worth it. These two rose early for a sunrise session in Santa Cruz, and we could not have witnessed a more beautiful sunrise. As we were driving up the mountain roads, I stumbled upon an overlook where the clouds were resting just above the mountains. Though Louisa and Dylan came to the Santa Cruz mountains for the redwoods forest, I quickly dragged them to the overlook for a quick stop as a the sun peeked over the horizon. We then ventured into the forest, leaving with a few new koi fish friends, dirty feet, and lost car keys (don't worry, they were found). Not a bad start to the morning!
Be careful what you wish for...is the moral of this story. Amber and Clark came back to where they tied the knot just a week earlier for an adventure trash the dress session. Clark almost had wanted to change the session location because he had seen photos of the crashing waves (which he loved) in San Francisco, but I assured him that this beach did indeed had strong waves. As we climbed down to the beach, Amber mentioned possibly keeping the dress while Clark was all for selling it. Though I also was a supporter of Clark's side...it was a different story at the end of the session when they were dripping head-to-toe from a rogue wave. But I mean, how cute are these two?! We soaked in the last light running into the ocean, watching the sunset over the ocean and even caught a glimpse of the moon rising as the last hurray to their wedding celebration.
Bring on all the tears...7 years ago, these two met and knew from the very beginning that it was a love worth fighting for. From their tearful first look to the most ecstatic cheers and hugs when they walked down the aisle together hand in hand as husband + wife, their beautiful Mexican boho wedding was the perfect way to celebrate the start to their marriage. Congratulations Melissa and Justin!
When you decide 6 months into dating that you're going to do long distance halfway across the world, you know that it is for real. These two sweethearts quickly bonded over their love of adventure and (first his, then both of their) love of Game of Thrones. Watching them giggle with happiness and joy on their wedding day was just so precious and telling of how much they loved each other. Congratulations Amber and Clark!
These two had the best of both worlds - an intimate elopement at San Francisco City Hall with tear-jerking vows followed by a beautiful Persian ceremony and the best dance moves I had ever seen by friends and family young and old alike. Neda was the most beautiful bride in her elegant Naeem Khan gown, perfect for the romantic steps of City Hall. And then the real fun began two days later - good food, good music, and very good dance moves. Now that's the way to do it!
It's such a blessing to get to see into a small window of couple's love story, and even more precious when it's two friends. Brian had been a good mentor of Keith's back in college when they were in church ministry together, so we were so excited to get to capture their engagement photos in the redwood forest here in the Bay Area with their overseas wedding planned for Yixin's hometown in Australia. It was such a fun adventure with these two as we bonded over where we were now as old(er) adults in life, the differences between Australia and the US, and all the cute ways these two showed love to each other as we walked along the redwoods trail. Congratulations Brian and Yixin, we wish you so many blessings for your upcoming marriage!