San Francisco Photography Weddings » San Francisco Wedding Photography, Where Fine Art & Photojournalism Collide

Barbara & Don’s Wedding, The Purple Orchid Inn, Livermore CA

Their wedding was epic. All the regular adjectives (beautiful, gorgeous, emotional, exciting… etc.) apply with fervor. But here they apply in a different sort of way. Barb and Don have been through the ups and downs of life in a way few couples who are just getting married have. And on their wedding day, as I woke up and drove out to Livermore I felt like everything about the day had been created for them. The deep blue sky, the rich olive trees, and the roses growing through the grounds of the immaculate Purple Orchid Inn were all were saying in unison… “we are alive to celebrate this couple, join us!” And the people did! For me this was one of the most emotional weddings I’ve ever shot. Don and Barbara have, over the course of the last 6-8 months after I met them become my friends, and I was moved by their wedding and the tenderness with which they obviously love each other. Rarely, if ever do I cry at a wedding, since I’m so intent on shooting and my mind is running a mile a minute. But I think I cried twice on this day, once during the ceremony, and then again during the best man’s toast. And I wasn’t the only one.

While they could have been married anywhere in the Bay Area, and many of their friends drove in from San Francisco, they chose to get married ten minutes from their house. Livermore is a rich wine country, but it also has some beautiful orchards, and the Purple Orchid Inn is nestled at the foothills of some olive trees which were dripping with ripe olives. I love the burnt summer grass and juxtaposed with the flower gardens. Personally every six months or so I feel like I take my photography to the next level. I’m not sure what exactly happens, but all of a sudden things I’ve been working on fall into place, and bam! I’m struck by how excited I am about the images I just captured. I feel this wedding, along with the one I shot a couple days ago (which is soon to come) was one of those turning point weddings, and I’m thrilled to share it with you today. Please leave a comment and let me know what you think.

Along for the day, I had the talented Chris Shum, who caught this shot below, and some of the details you’ll see later in this post.
Chris’ shot below.
Don had pocket watches made for all his groomsmen, and I wanted to catch his reflection in the shine of the watch (above). I also thoroughly enjoyed photographing his groomsmen, who were some of the easiest guys to work with. I could almost palpably feel how much they cared for and respected Don. I think the image below embodies that.
I try to always have my second shooter with the bride right before she is about to walk down the aisle, here she’s watching from a room as the ceremony begins. Nice work Chris.
Along with the tears there was quite a bit of laughter during the ceremony.
Just following the ceremony the couple and their best man and matron of honor went upstairs to sign the marriage license. Sometimes the best was to catch an emotional hug is to look for a different angle. I loved what I saw and dig the final result below.
Is she stunning or what?
Don and Barbara are also part of a sweet band which did set the crowd rocking later on in the night. Everything looks so classic all set up and ready to go.
The favors were fantastic little cookies that Don’s mother baked from scratch.
Before the band took the stage Barbara surprised Don with a song that put him and pretty much everyone else in tears.

Awesome job! love all the details and your use of shadow 😉

Wow! Love love all these images! Your composition and lighting are fantastic as well as your ability to capture a true moment. I am crazy about your last shots and the silhouette shots too. That shadow of them by the door…. Fantastic! 🙂

love the colors you’re getting. So bright, clean and saturated. Fantastic job on the silhouette shots too.

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