This is part 2 of 2 for Marie & Charlie’s Ocean Beach and Sutro Baths engagement session. For part 1 at Sutro baths, click here. After “golden hour” at Sutro Baths, Marie and Charlie changed into an elegant ensemble of a black suit and a flowy white cocktail dress for the 2nd part of their engagement session at San Francisco’s Ocean Beach. The Great Highway has been closed to cars for a couple years now, and during the day the road is full of cyclists and runners and strollers, but at “blue hour” midweek, we had the Great Highway entirely to ourselves. After making a few portraits in the middle of the road, we headed up onto the dunes. The last licks of light were spectacular as Marie and Charlie explored the dunes and watched the last of the sunset.
Michelle & Hayden’s Pacific Heights engagement session fit my ideal to the tee. It took the shape of a fun and casual date meandering through meaningful haunts. All of this in the good light of course.
We used the occasion of the engagement session as an excuse to revisit their old Pacific Heights stomping grounds. When they first met, they were both living in Pacific Heights, just a few blocks away from each other. We met up for a drink at a sidewalk cafe called Palmers, that they had visited many times in their early years of dating. From there we explored the neighborhood. We stopped in front of their old homes for portraits, and continued our walk down towards the water, eventually we made it to the Marina, and on to Crissy Field East Beach to catch the sunset. The weather and the light treated us remarkably well.
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.
Palace of Fine Arts Engagement Photos – Kristin and Nick
Kristin & Nick met and fell in love when they were living in San Francisco, so it was a treat for them to have an engagement session with the splendor of the city as a backdrop. Nick actually proposed at the Palace of Fine Arts, so this was a return in another sense for the two. The weather did not disappoint. It was San Francisco through and through, toasty in the sun, and freezing cold in the shade, or when the wind blew. After exploring all the nooks and crannies of the Palace of Fine Arts, listening to accordion music, finding the good light on some large green doors, etc. we headed over to the beach at Crissy Field for a few more photos with the Golden Gate Bridge, and the San Francisco Bay. A seagull and a frisky dog made cameos. “Karl,” the fog, hung just past the bridge to remind us exactly where we were.