I’m going to start off by saying. Best groom/best man shoot ever. Todd and his brother must have had this planned. Due to timing, I split up with Katrina and she captured these shots while I was with Jeannine. My favorite has got to be the shot where they are split behind a tree. It’s too good, I can bear to see it done again.
I was introduced to Todd and Jeannine through my favorite wedding coordinator, Rebecca from Be-Hitched. I was out of town, so we met via FaceTime, but even separated by a screen, we got good vibes from each other and were on the same page with the type of wedding photography they wanted. We did another 2 hour FaceTime call 3 weeks before the wedding day to iron out the details and by the time we were threw, I felt like we were already friends.
I started the morning at a VRBO the couple had rented out in San Francisco. I had to do a double check because I nearly mistook Jeannine’s sister for her when she answered the door. You know how you have that awkward few seconds where you wait for the other person to introduce themselves while you greet them as warmly and enthusiastically as possible, because you know, you think they might be the person you’ve been talking to for a few hours over FaceTime. No?
So I finally meet Jeannine, in person, and problem solved. I prefer to capture real life over staging “wedding” shots. That means, if you’re ironing, I’ll get that. It may or may not make the final edit, but as mundane as ironing is, it’s something that happened. Because amongst those mundane moments, sometimes, you get the unexpected moments that are properly capture worthy.
With the girls, I was able to just get them being themselves around each other and Jeannine spending some warm moments with her family. I rode with the girls to the Andy Goldsworthy wooden “Spire” installation in the Presidio. With a bit of coordination, we set it up for Todd to wait in a clearing, while Jeannine walked up to him from behind for their first look. People express emotions differently, and while Todd did not well up or cry, their first hug showed in its tenderness everything he needed to express in seeing Jeannine for the first time that day.
We spent a little time to do a quick portrait session before inviting the rest of the wedding party to join for a shoot by the Spire. Even posed, this group showed their personality and I loved capturing the bits in between getting to locations as much as at the locations themselves. We went to Fort Point for a second setting. This is my favorite place to get a shot with the Golden Gate Bridge because you are literally right underneath it and it’s not your typical pose in front of the GGB shot.
The limo now packed everyone in and took us back to the Chapel of our Lady for the ceremony. The couple provided beautiful little handkerchiefs for their guests and it’s the little details like this that I like to capture.
In the chapel the interior was lit, but darker than the light outside, which meant I could play with some silhouettes or overexpose a shot to give a glow behind the subject as they enter. This worked out really well for the processional shots. Once my camera was facing the altar, the lighting was a lot more even and made shooting fleeting moments a lot easier since I didn’t have to worry too much about changing my settings every time I moved the camera.
The party moved next door to the Officer’s Club, where Todd and Jeannine were almost immediately able to hang out with family and get through the family photos. Since we had already done our portraits earlier in the day, they were able to mingle with their guests and enjoy their cocktail hour. And they really did. Just look at that shot of Todd being carried by Jeannine’s cadre of lady friends.
The reception started with a little twist as both bride and groom changed into dancing shoes and put on quite a show for their guests. With a pretty open schedule, we left plenty of time for the couple to go around and hang with their guests as well as a sunset portrait session. This gave them some private time and allowed us to shoot with some perfectly defused late afternoon light in the woods behind the venue.