E and B were willing to meet me early in the morning at Wildcat Canyon for a hike and engagement photo session. I think of this as the Berkeley Hills, even though it’s a teensy bit North of Berkeley. This set is a sunrise engagement session! My absolute favorite. We met early in the morning, and used the delicious soft light coming through the grass, rolling over the hills, emanating from the city below, for our glory. While sunset engagement sessions are also lovely and ubiquitous, they generally involve lots of other people in the scene to avoid. We had a particularly quiet morning, and for much of our hike, there was nobody else in eyesight. The part of the hike up on the ridge line next to the forest was special, lush and new. It was January here in the Bay Area, the rainy season, but we got lucky and had a clear, sunny morning. The rain brought out the green grass and the mushrooms.
Here we have a year of weddings as seen through “moments.”
2018 brought a lovely diversity of venues throughout the Bay Area and beyond, including the Sierra Mountains, Big-Sur, The Boston T and the Boston Public Library, Art Museums, Tiny Chapels and Massive Urban High Schools, Small High Schools and Redwood Theaters, a Mansion that once belonged to a general…
I feel overwhelming gratefulness for all the joy and ritual that I experienced through a camera lens this past year.
But why “moments”? Because they draw us in through their storytelling power. They make us feel what exists on either side of them. They don’t just show a gorgeous dress. They show a woman in a gorgeous dress flushed with joy as she dances with her father. Her gesture shows the freedom and the fun she has shared with him. They don’t just show a marriage license sitting upon a table. They show a group hug between a bride, a groom, her sister, his brother, and the closest of friends, the marriage license gripped between the groom’s fingers.
A photograph is time frozen. Sure, etymologically speaking, it is a light-drawing…but maybe we should have called it a nontempograph… because it’s conceptual implications are: it takes something that exists in the spatiotemporal world, and strips it of time, leaving it to a solely spatial existence. It is of time and yet out of time. A spatial representation of time at a standstill.
And in it’s spatial existence, it can only hint at temporality. It is those photographs that gesture grandly toward temporality that move me most.
Here’s to a 2019 of making wedding photographs that gesture grandly toward temporality.
Industrial Chic Wedding Bok Building – Eliza & Dirk
Eliza & Dirk had the distinct pleasure of walking from their home in their South Philadelphia neighborhood to their wedding venue, The Bok Building. Part of the vision for the day, as far as photography, was a walk through the neighborhood with bridal portraits in front of Eliza & Dirk’s favorite murals. We got lucky, and happened upon an Italian street festival, replete with red white and green pendants strung across the street. Philadelphia is a city of hidden magic on tiny alleys, and we found that magic again and again as the day unfolded.
Eliza is an urban planner, Dirk a geographer, so it was apt that the backdrop for their wedding was a view of the city grid of Philadelphia from above. The florals were fantastic. I love the arrangement at the altar with the city peeking through beyond. Post-industrial splendour exploding with flowers!
Sometimes as I photograph a wedding I pick up on a subtle dynamic I didn’t see coming. On their wedding day, from getting ready, through the ceremony, into toasts, I was struck by what an exceptionally strong chosen family Eliza & Dirk have cultivated, and now cherish.
Let’s also not forget that there was an astronaut in attendance, and he made every photo he graced with his presence ten times better.
I could write volumes, but these photos!! I won’t keep them from you any longer.
USA Road Trip on Color Film
Honestly this road trip my wife, Addie, and I took across the USA feels like ancient history, but I love these images I made primarily on medium format film, and I wanted to share them. When we moved from Cambridge, MA to San Francisco we drove a northerly root through Buffalo, NY, up through Niagara Falls and on to a farm North of London, Ontario,. Then we came back down through Detroit, the Indiana Dunes, Illinois, Iowa, Badlands National Park, The Black Hills, down into Laramie Wyoming. I flew out of Denver, photographed a wedding in Boston, and then a wedding in Philadelphia. I flew back into Denver, and we headed Northwest across Wyoming and up to Grand Tetons and Yellowstone. We slept in Idaho, and Eastern Oregon both dispersed camping on BLM land. The end of our trip we went to Crater Lake, slept in Ashland, and then near Redding by a hot spring. It was my first road trip all the way from the Atlantic to the Pacific and it did not disappoint.
Boston Public Library Wedding – Alexandra & Eric
Photography : Paul Gargagliano / Hazel Photo
Wedding Coordinator : Bryanne Pepin The Catered Affair
Florist : Brattle Florist
Bride’s Dress : Jenny Packham
Bride’s hairpiece : Gigi Burgiss
Groom’s Tuxedo : Prada
Hair : Darren Le
Makeup : Anthony Joseph Beauty
Ceremony Music : Keros Entertainment
Cheese Wedding Cake : Formaggio
Catering : The Catered Affair
Invitations : Pickett’s Press
Mill Valley Wedding – Lisl & Zach