Reconstructionist Jewish Wedding – Commander’s Mansion

Reconstructionist Jewish Wedding – Commander’s Mansion – Alex & Adam

Alex and Adam held their wedding on a pleasant cloudy June day at the Commander’s Mansion in Watertown, Massachusetts. The Commanders Mansion is a stately old building dating back to 1865. The history of the building is not without minor controversy, and is certainly worth a read. Take a look at that light filtering in through the old glass windows, that, my friend, is a photographer’s dream. The ketubah signing, in particular, shows off the charm of the building.


Rabbi Alex Weissman and Rabbi Adam Lavitt are both, well, rabbis, so, as you can imagine, the day’s ceremonial bits were very well orchestrated. This was to be expected, but still, the eloquent and heartfelt words of their friends and family during their tisches, and Rabbi Jacob Staub‘s words as he officiated under the chuppah, were overwhelmingly moving.


What I couldn’t have seen coming, was that Adam and Alex would be so delightfully, infectiously, playful. This made our portrait session a total pleasure. The duality of attending to the spiritual realm with intelligence and intention, while holding deep reserves of playfulness, was brought to light metaphorically in their dress. Both wore a harmonious and subtle blazer-shirt-tie-pocket square combo, that matched their boutonnières to a T, but down below, they wore silver and gold Chuck Taylors!


One of my favorite moments of the day happened during a toast Alex’s mother gave. She quoted at length from a beautiful poem, and not until she was through, did she reveal that she was quoting Rabbi Adam Lavitt, her new son in law. I leave you with the poem:


This is balance:
The world is entirely consumed by darkness,
then brimming with light.
The seasons approach one after the other,
bring unbearable heat, bitter cold and everything
in between. Joy fades. Loss
makes space for growth and new life.
Balance is not a perfect blend
of extremes. It is something that takes place
inside a larger system. It is a perspective,
an awareness that makes space for us
to fully experience winter and then spring,
light and then darkness.
Darkness and then light.
Life of all Worlds, thank you
for giving us the strength
to allow our world, our heart,
to be big enough for it all.



Venue : Comander’s Mansion

Catering: Cuisine ChezVous

Officiant : Jacob Staub

Florals : Celebrated Flower

DJ : DJ Red Dawn


East Bay Regional Parks Botanic Garden Wedding Berkeley CA

East Bay Regional Parks Botanic Garden Wedding Berkeley, CA

Eli and Tobie were married in a shady grove of towering redwood trees in the East Bay Regional Parks Botanic Garden in Berkeley, California. They are both super charismatic, and they were great in front of the camera. When the connection between a couple is electric, like it is between Eli and Tobie, my job is easy.

Yes, Eli and Tobie’s wedding was overflowing with glorious colorful outfits, but Tobie’s pants — come on! They brought a burst of color to every image he was in. Tobie’s parents constructed a freestanding chuppah that looked like an erector set in the best possible way. There is one image of Tobie’s dad seeming to summon the chuppah from the earth. Poems were read, songs were sung, Eli’s family staged a production of the Owl and the Pussycat, replete with costumes and props. Eli is a talented musician, namely a singer songwriter. Throughout the ceremony and toasts, there were references to songs Eli had written, including a love song he wrote when he was first falling in love with Tobie. At the reception, guests were served the fanciest, most delicious, vegan barbecue you might ever encounter, especially that chimichurri sauce, yum! It was a typical Bay Area day, sunny and hot in the middle, cloudy and windy in the afternoon. I loved how one couple grabbed their travel quilt and got cozy.

Vegan Catering by It’s From the Garden


Art Museum Wedding

Art Museum Wedding – Nathan and Jeannette

Nathan and Jeannette held their wedding at the Decordova Art Museum. This was certainly apt as Jeannette is a talented artist. Meaningful details revealed themselves at every corner as the day unfolded. I will try to list them, but I know there are many that will elude me… I feel as if I got to know the two better through the intelligence of the decisions they made in planning their wedding. They met when they were teachers, so their wedding favor was a triad of pencils inscribed with a quiet and gorgeous fragment form a Walt Whitman poem, “There we two, content, happy in being together, speaking little, perhaps not a word.” On the wedding altar was placed a table occupied by a bonsai tree into which Nathan had poured his attention and love for more than a decade, and succulents belonging to Jeannette’s mother. Nathan’s father donned three outfits as the day progressed, a suit for getting ready, his vestments to officiate the wedding, and a tux to celebrate. Not only did Nathan’s mother make the cake, and enough ice cream cake to feed all the wedding guests, but she commissioned a sculptor to make a cake-topper depicting Nathan and Jeannette’s three dogs. The florals were exquisite, almost avant-garde in places, perfect for an art museum wedding. Jeannette’s dress was at the same time elegant and sculptural. There were many moments where it inflected the art on the museum walls. Thanks again, Jeannette and Nathan, for having me make art about your wedding!

printed pencil wedding favors

Venue : deCordova Art Museum
Dress : Amsale
Florist : Hanaya Floral Design
Makeup : Christie Torres
DJ and/or band : Fine Tune Entertainment, Joe Kaszuba
Cake : Rachel Coppersmith
Catering : Swartz Catering
Invitations : DWRI Letterpress


Classic Church and Topsail Tent Wedding – Jocelyn and Tom

Classic Church and Topsail Tent Wedding – Jocelyn and Tom

The story of how it came to be that I photographed Jocelyn and Tom’s wedding is on the complicated side of things. Jocelyn reached out to see if I was available to photograph her wedding on the Sunday of Memorial Day. She is an incredible storyteller, and went into detail in her initial query about the history of her grandma and grandpa’s house where the reception would be held. The house actually had it’s 300th birthday this year. There was a fabled apple tree, apple pies, peach jam, and a grapevine Robert Frost had written a poem about. Jocelyn and Tom were high school sweethearts at Exeter where they both rowed on the crew team. Very sad for me! I was booked Sunday, but I was available Saturday, so I cheekily suggested they change the date of the wedding to Saturday.

 

By mere chance, or some celestial tinkering, Jocelyn and Tom changed their wedding date to Saturday, and booked me as their photographer! I anticipated the wedding with excitement all year long, and when it finally came to pass, it did not disappoint.

 

The wedding was a classic. It started in the Exeter church, and ended with joyous dancing under a topsail tent. The thing that struck me most about their wedding was how right it felt. They were surrounded by family and friends who could see with great clarity how happy Jocelyn and Tom made each other and what an incredible match the two made. Each, in their own right, is a force to be reckoned with, but together, they are indomitable. Woe to anyone who should impede their path. They had their first look on a worn marble staircase at Phillips Exeter Academy where they had first met and forged their connection. I made couples portraits of the two down at the Exeter Boathouse, the site of their first date! I could go on and on about the wonders of their wedding… Thank you again for being so lovely to work with, Jocelyn and Tom.

 

Many many thanks to the talented Cara Brostrom for coming on as a 2nd photographer.

 

Sitting Bride Groom Portrait San Francisco Wedding Photographer

 

Bride’s Dress: Amsale from The White Gown

Groom’s suit: Custom made by the Black Lapel

Florist: Cymbidium Floral

DJ and/or band: DJ Jodi Entertainment

Catering: Stone Oven Catering and Las Olas

Invitations: Crane & Co


Big Sur Wedding Photographer

Big Sur Wedding Photographer

This was my first time photographing a wedding in Big Sur, and the landscape did not disappoint. There are reasons to get married in a setting as beautiful as the Wind and Sea Estate. You need less decor! Just look how the landscape and the light change color as the day proceeds. That’s California for you. Honestly, Big Sur is kind of a wedding photographer’s dream.

 

Jess and Nick had an intimate wedding with just 20 guests at the gorgeous Wind and Sea Estate in Big Sur, California. I definitely got to know the guests a bit better than I do when photographing a wedding with over 100 guests, and I am grateful for this, because across the board Jess and Nick’s people were delightful human beings. This was unsurprising really, as they are two of the warmest people I have ever had the pleasure of photographing. That warmth was on their faces all day long, and a week later when I saw them again, they were still glowing from deep within.

 

Late into the night, after Jess & Nick had, surfed, and showered, and donned spiffy spiffy togs, and processed through verdant hills, and spoke their vows, and kissed at a seaside altar (not once, but whenever the spirit moved them, like champs, like people who know exactly what they want) and after they read Shel Silverstein’s The Missing Piece to their guests, after they were showered again, this time with lavender confetti, and after they dined, and danced, and were showered again, but this time with the words of their eloquent friends and family, they had a bonfire, and listened to the sea, and it grew dark.

 

Big Sur Wedding Photographer Wind and Sea Resort

Big Sur Wedding Photographer Wind and Sea Estate

Wedding attire: Jill Stuart/BHLDN

Florist: We are gonna buy a bunch of succulents

Wedding planner: Sea and Stars Catering, Jamie

Hair: Kim Larson

Makeup: Kim Larson

DJ and/or band: Spotify Playlist

Videographer: none

Cake: Sea and Stars (Pies, cookies and s’mores by a fire pit)

Catering: Sea and Stars Catering

Invitations: paperlesspost


San Francisco Marriage Proposal Photographer

San Francisco Marriage Proposal Photographer – SF MOMA

Kevin found me on yelp, figure that. He told me that he lived with his girlfriend, Maggie, down in San Diego and that they were planning a trip up to San Francisco, and it was going to be quite a trip, because he was hoping they would be engaged on the return flight. We made a master marriage proposal plan to be carried out at the spectacular Battery Godfrey. I sent him a video of exactly where he would stand in front of San Francisco’s Golden Gate Bridge… point there, tap here, kneel there… every detail of the marriage proposal was planned out except for the rain (I hear it doesn’t do that in San Diego.) So it definitely rained. We made a backup master marriage proposal plan at San Francisco City Hall, and Kevin executed it perfectly. I have to say it’s thrilling every time I get to photograph a marriage proposal, and these two were about the nicest giddiest folks you could hope to spend a rainy afternoon photographing. After the proposal at San Francisco City Hall we headed over to SF MOMA for a few more deliriously happy photographs.

marriage proposal photographer san francisco bay area