This is another installation in our candid photography series. I want to talk about a couple who have become two of my favorite people in the world.
Months ago, I was contacted through my website from a man called Steve, who it turned out that he and his then fiancé, Susie, live in England. They had this beautiful plan to come to the Bay Area, find a photographer who would meet them, or pick them up in the middle of the day, where they would be fully dressed in their tuxedo and wedding dress. They wanted a chaperone, a tour guide and a photographer all wrapped into one.
As you may know, many of my other international clients, don't have a scope of the size of the United States, let alone the Bay Area. So, they gave me a list of places, which would have taken us about a month to go and see all of them. After some discussion, I whittled it down the places that I knew were most important to them and lent themselves best to everything they wanted to do, see and experience.
We went to pier 39 and to the Palace of Fine Arts. We went to Crissy Field, to the Embarcadero and then we ended the night at Baker beach. What's beautiful about what they did was they combined an engagement shoot with their wedding, because the whole day was a photoshoot for them. We had a brilliant time because they are hysterical, wonderful and kind.
The day ended with us going to Baker beach and meeting their wedding officiant Lauren. They were tourists, fiancés and got married all in one day, something I have never seen that done before. What made it even more special, I not only was their photographer, but also their witness. The following day, they went back across the pond to England and had a big party with their friends and family back home.
Now, while there are thousands of pictures from that day, there's one that encapsulates the two of them. And, coincidentally, it's Steve's favorite photo of our experience together.
What we're looking at is the two of them when they arrived at Baker Beach. Generally speaking, these are two of the happiest people you've ever met. What we have in this image is Susie, with her feet in the Pacific Ocean, holding her bouquet, and Steve holding her shoes, like the gentleman that he is. There's nobody in the world in that moment except the two of them. You can see that Susie's looking directly at her man minutes before he becomes her husband. The setting was perfect as can be expected at Baker Beach. Right behind me was Lauren, the wedding officiant watching them smiling, waiting for them to be ready because there was no schedule or time constraints. We started when we wanted, we finished when we were done. We all enjoyed the day at own pace.
They were very clever choosing Lauren and I to shoot their day-long journey and marry them, respectively, because we're both incredibly mellow people that respected a cared for our clients. All we wanted to do was to ensure that they experienced their day as they envisioned it.
If you look at this, it gives you everything. On the surface, it's a wedding on the beach, and you can't beat that. The things you don't see are that they flew over 5 thousand miles. They executed a plan that nobody else had the audacity to do, and to be honest, if more people did things like this, just follow their dreams, they would be happier.
As some readers might know, weddings can turn out to be about mom, or about Grandma, or about the family and unfortunately not about the two most important people, the bride and groom. They understood that.
This beautiful couple came up with this wonderfully adventurous idea, that carried inherent risks; They had never come to the United States before and they didn’t know me. We certainly had video Skype conversations and emails and fell in love with each other beforehand, which was great, nevertheless they were still taking my word for everything.
Everything worked, everything was perfect. And you can feel that when you look at Susie’s face. And while in the two photos you can't see Steve's you know exactly what he looks like and how he feels, both of them were blissful.
What a brilliant day!