Sarah & Chris – COVID Wedding San Francisco

Sarah & Chris were married in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic and a historic uprising for racial equality. 

Sarah & Chris were married on a gorgeous, sunny day at their apartment in the Mission District with bright blue skies overhead and wisps of fog off in the distance. 

Sarah & Chris were married on a moody day, dense with fog and magic in a redwood grove in Golden Gate Park. 

All  of these sentences are true. It’s the concept of “Yes/And:” 

Yes, Sarah & Chris, had their plans for a larger wedding upended by the COVID pandemic… and they planned a gorgeous, multi-climate micro COVID wedding anyway. 

It takes a special sort of person, and a special sort of mind to live out the “Yes/And.” Sarah & Chris are both that kind of special person with that special kind of mind. For some, being forced to cancel or reimagine wedding plans due to COVID-19 is primarily felt as a loss. But Sarah & Chris found about a million ways to make their COVID wedding day one of the most meaningful, gorgeous, unforgettable days the two shall ever live. 

The City of San Francisco offered them a virtual wedding ceremony with a virtual officiant on June 19th… so, they said “Yes/And.” Yes to the virtual wedding ceremony (which they were able to share with their families through a Zoom screenshare) and yes to the fact that the day on offer was Juneteenth, a day of protest and celebration for equality and liberation of black people. They would find ways to honor Juneteenth as part of their wedding celebration. 

The day started in Sarah & Chris’ apartment, where they live surrounded by objects imbued with their love and their story: including carefully tended house plants, a web of photographs from their shared adventures, elaborate paper masks, homemade sourdough bread, and a glossy magazine that Sarah made as part of their mutual marriage proposal. After the official ceremony with the City of San Francisco, sealed with a ring exchange and a kiss, they shared personal vows in front of their family on Zoom. They placed leis over each other’s heads and toasted with champagne.

We made  a few portraits in their apartment and on the roof deck, then headed downstairs, where a bike trailer packed with wedding reception fixings lay in wait. On the bike ride to Golden Gate Park, they wore placards that read (small print) “Just Married” and (large print) “Black Lives Matter.” We biked the Wiggle with sweet passersby cheering and honking in support and celebration.

When we arrived in Golden Gate Park we made some portraits at the Music Concourse, the Rose Garden, and the Redwood Grove, where we met up with a few of the couple’s closest friends. There, they hosted a socially-distant wedding reception with well-spaced group portraits, more celebratory signs, and a socially distant dance party.

If you’ve made it this far reading this post, you too can say Yes/And: Yes, we can enjoy witnessing Sarah & Chris’ expression of love — And we can honor them by joining the struggle for racial justice and equality. Breonna Taylor’s killers walk free. You can find resources for action here, here and here.


Round Pond Estate Wedding – Napa Valley

Cat & Ross held their wedding rehearsal dinner at Round Pond Estate, a gorgeous vineyard and winery in California’s Napa Valley. The Approach to Round Pond down the palm-lined driveway is absolutely iconic, as is the architecture of the winery. The first floor is comprised of a large wine cave with a glass ceiling. The 2nd floor houses a tasting room with a massive window down onto the wine cave below. Dinner was served on a patio off the 2nd floor overlooking the vineyard and the rolling hills beyond.

When Cat & Ross, and their guests arrived they were treated to a tour of the vineyards, the garden, and the wine cave. Dinner was a 5 course tasting menu paired with Napa Valley wines from Round Pond winery. Between the courses we ran out into the field to make couples portraits with the rows of palm trees, and the rows of grape vines. I’m particularly fond of what happened with the light in the vineyards after the sun had dipped below the horizon, such supple bright light for these two the night before their wedding.


Beltane Ranch Wedding Sonoma, California

Beltane Ranch Wedding Sonoma, California – Cat & Ross

Cat & Ross were married at Beltane Ranch in Glen Ellen, California on a gobsmackingly beautiful April day. They opted for an elopement with only family in attendance. Over the weekend I was able to get to know them and their families a bit, especially so as I also photographed their rehearsal dinner at Round Pond Estate the night before. Both nights were celebrations of love, of course, but also of food, as Cat and Ross have a bit of a flare for the gastronomic. But, I’m getting ahead of myself here.

The truly remarkable thing that happened on that Saturday in April in Glen Ellen California under a live oak tree overlooking a vineyard, is that time came to a standstill. The wedding ceremony was proceeding as planned. Ross’s mother led him to the altar. Cat’s father led her to Ross. Ross’s brother, the officiant, spoke eloquently. Cat’s mother shared a reading. The wind rustled the ribbons tied to the chairs, and the leaves of the oak overhead, and all of the rows of grapevines beyond out into the horizon. And then Cat produced a small notebook and began to read her vows. Like that. Time stopped. It was everything I could do to continue making photographs. Cat’s words demanded the attention of all present, Ross, her family, the old ranch house, the chef, the farm kitten, but also, the clouds, and all of creation. I had never experienced anything quite like that before.

It feels strange to go on, but one must. We all found our legs again, and the two recessed down the aisle, husband and wife. Champagne was poured, toasts were made, hugs were dispensed with abandon. The sun began to reach for the horizon. Cat and Ross shared a first dance under the oak tree to the dulcet tones of a string trio.

Dinner was served at a long table flanked by heat lamps overlooking the vineyards. This wedding may only have had 10 guests in total, but there were seven courses on the menu. Wines from Sonoma Valley were poured to pair with each course. When golden hour struck, Cat, Ross and I hopped in an ATV with Lauren from Beltane, and headed off to the rolling hills of vineyards to make a few portraits. When we returned we were graced with an absolutely spectacular sunset to close out the night

Venue : Beltane Ranch
Photographer : Hazel Photo
Hair and Makeup : Ashley Jensen
Wedding attire : Grooms Suit: Jojayden, Bride’s gown: Jenny Yoo
Cake : Bouchon
Catering : Beltane Ranch
DJ/Band : BellaRosa String Quartet
Wine : Schramsberg , Davies Vineyard


St. Helena Wedding – Napa Valley

Intimate wedding in St. Helena, Napa Valley, California

B & K were married on a storybook sunny April day in St. Helena in California’s Napa Valley. The poppies were out. The wisteria was out. The rows upon rows of grapevines looked lively and healthy. 


This was an intimate wedding, just immediate family and a pair of friends in a glorious backyard with vineyards and mountains as a backdrop. 


After the ceremony, we headed over a few blocks to Downtown St. Helena for the wedding reception at the incredible Charter Oak Restaurant. After the meal, we headed out to play with sparklers in the balmy night.