I finally had the opportunity to visit Venice Beach, Ca. Unfortunately my time was limited, so I was only there for about an hour. I wish there was some way to convey my experience besides the photos I took.
There is an energy that pervades the atmosphere. Music emanates from the storefronts. People eating, walking, talking, be-bopping, watching, entertaining, riding, dancing, playing, hanging out – this was just a slice of the energy of people converging in a space that invites us, all of us, to an experience of openness and freedom of expression.
It was a perfect summery late afternoon that invited me to join in. My favorite parts . . . walking along the boardwalk, making contact with a fellow free spirit and dancing our way down a ways to the music – and encountering a group apparently making a music video. I observed the gamut from Muscle Beach enthusiasts to art forms of various types.
And many thanks to my bff Cathrine for accompanying me and helping support me in my difficulties navigating from the parking area and back. Oh, and who has a building dedicated to the love of someone named Werner across from the parking area one block from the beach?! Simone, I hope your love story continues on.
Perfect autumn day, perfect couple with perfect chemistry! I believe a photographer gets insight when we shoot a couple getting their pictures taken. The ease of being with each other, the spontaneous laughter, the looks shared that a photographer can’t elicit, but only hope to capture as they happen. Ilana and Jake, I believe, have it all – and when I sit here and go through image after image, my belief is totally confirmed. No, life won’t be perfect – but I think they have what it takes to face whatever comes their way with trust, strength, and a bond that won’t be broken.
Luis and Vaneza said their vows in a room full of friends and family from far and wide (as far as Germany!) After the ceremony they made their way to Shell Beach Dinosaur Caves Park in the coolest 58 Chevy for a photo session overlooking the beautiful blue Pacific Ocean. Then, on to the iconic Madonna Inn for a reception that included lots of dancing, toasts, and even a Mariachi Band. A highlight of the evening was when the mothers came forward and shared special words and prayers, along with a few tears.
Brian and Linda arranged for their 5 kids, their wives, and their children to all meet up at the Taft Barn in Atascadero, Ca. Especially because their daughter Jen, her husband Michael and their 3 adorable boys were visiting from Michael’s homeland – Australia. Maybe the ultimate challenge for a photographer is a huge family grouping – but there was such a great camaraderie amongst this family that it made my time with them a great pleasure!
I realized that many of the photos from this session epitomize who I am as a photographer. I strive to capture the heart of who people are – not direct people to put on a “smile for the camera”. I don’t want to come away with a series of pictures of people who performed for the photographer – I want to portray people in moments as they interact with each other. And that they will be left with pictures that years later will evoke emotions and feelings and special memories of their times together.
My daughter Carly used to hate me taking pictures of her. She finally accepted the inevitable and willingly models for me. We went out recently on a spring day. I had sort of a vision of what I wanted to do, which includes a lot of work in photoshop – going for a very arts look.
I glanced up the hill and caught Zoe watching and got this shot – she’s turned to be a pretty good model too . . .
Two of the shots were taken at Justin Winery in Adelaide – the rest we shot on our property in Atascadero, Ca.
Tawny and Bob chose to have a small, intimate wedding at her parent’s beautiful victorian house in Paso Robles. Everything was perfect from the weather to the setting to the vows which touched hearts to the delicious brunch served up by Chef Jeff. By 2:00 they were off for Yosemite which I’ve heard is the most beautiful it’s been in years.
My time shooting Chris and Emily’s wedding was short and sweet – about 3 hours – but it was a great time with a fun couple and a fun time. We were unsure about what the weather would hold for the day, but as Emily had researched in the Farmer’s Almanac, the weather held up perfectly for this special day.