Hello 2017!

Hello 2017, I’m so glad you’re here.

2016 was a challenging year for me due to some not so great family stuff. And my ex-office assistant who was the best assistant ever also left to take a full-time job. Trying to find an equally good assistant has proved challenging. It was my most booked wedding season with 30 weddings, plus other portrait & small advertising jobs. I tend to deliver a lot of photos per shoot, so without the extra help of an office assistant, it’s been a bit gnarly. BUT I loved loved loved all the wonderful people I photographed & collaborated with this year.

One of my kid lifestyle shoots was featured in a cool German publication, Süddeutsche Zeitung Magazin. And my co-photo company Gather West was named best of 2016 weddings! Woot! Usually, I work on getting a good number of weddings published, but I didn’t get the chance to do any of that last year. Love Inc Mag found me.

I’m lucky that I get to work with lovers surrounded by their loving families all year round. Not to mention the people in my life who love & care for me. Tho tough times suck, it has shown me how much love people have for me, and who I can depend on for anything or a little extra TLC. I will miss my loved ones dearly & forever. It comforts me to know that the love we have for our loved ones lives on.

My last shoot of 2016 was in mid Dec. I’ll be busy processing photos, starting engagement shoots & meetings with more 2017 inquiries for the next couple months. And my wedding season starts up again in February.

Here’s a mash-up of a few more 2016 weddings with couples from all over the world, Spain, France The Philippines, China, India…more to come from Germany, Netherlands, Japan…

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This Spanish & French fusion of families was so fun! How cool that they can speak each others language and combine their cultures so easily.

Today is my grandpa’s bday, he was a WWII hero and commercial pilot. My grandparents raised me. I was born in the Bay area, but we lived in Hawaii & Taiwan until I was 7. I traveled often with them, flying first class, and getting special treatment from the crew. It was awesome obviously! I remember being in snow in Japan, meeting my first beautiful tranny in Bangcock, and shopping in France. We settled back down in Belmont for my middle and high school years. My grandmother worked for the American embassy, then as a secretary in the Science department at Stanford University. They were the parents who made me who I am.  Because of them and my upbringing, I think that is why I love different cultures and the satisfaction I get from working with all different kinds of people.

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I got to whip out my mandarin with this cute couple from China. My mom’s side of the family is Chinese. Their roots are from China, but my grandparents escaped communism to became refugees of Taiwan in 1949. I don’t get to practice my mandarin much these days, but I’m technically fluent. 😉

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Got to work with the amazing Nicki Wolf, planner, for this sweet wedding at Triple S ranch in Calistoga. Nicki is awesome, she is soo nice, soo there for not just the couple and their family but me too. I want to work with her as much as I can,  I want her & her beautiful energy in my life.  Bouquet from Ampersand.sf-city-hall-wedding-photographer_0008

This kind couple is from the Phillipinese, the bride Tati is a stewardess, and they offered me a trip to the Phillipinese. Amazing cuz of my family’s airline history. And they brought me all sorts of dried mango treats. sf-city-hall-wedding-photographer_0009sf-city-hall-wedding-photographer_0011 sf-city-hall-wedding-photographer_0012 sf-city-hall-wedding-photographer_0013 sf-city-hall-wedding-photographer_0014

Preethi is so pretty. I love Indian culture they are so affectionate. And absolutely love her subtle hippie dress that has peace, love & daisies.

I can’t wait to make some amazing things happen this year, try to live a simpler life, spend less time on the computer & finish more home renovation projects.

Here’s to a good 2017! Let it be a good year, a happy year, a fulfilling year.

 

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Los Altos History Museum Wedding

Theresa & Anupam’s wedding was a mix of their Western and Indian cultures. It was at  the Los Altos History Museum, on  a super warm sunny day in the peninsula. SF never gets that HOT, so it was a nice change. To keep true to Indian traditions, they had to get approval from the Los Altos City Council to have a horse during the Baraat. And a Baraat they had! The drummers were amazing. If you’ve ever been to a Baraat, you know the drummers give the crowd their energetic beat. And it helps to have good guy friends, who love to dance too.

Anupam road a white mare named Dora with his ring bearer. This old tradition is not only social  and fun, it’s also romantic. Dora the horse is with Vintage Carriage Company & she loves people and music.  It  was a very eventful & festive two days. The Mercury news came to cover the baraat. An there was even an indian styled tandem bike!

Theresa & Anupam honeymooned in Iceland.  It seems to be a popular honeymoon spot this year. Another couple, Sean & Mariah, also honeymooned in Iceland. They rented a camper van and did the Ring Road.  It sounds like a quest you go on related to marriage, haha. It’s the main road that runs around the island and connects most of the inhabited parts of the country. Check out Sean’s Iceland photos from their trip, they’re gorgeous!

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The bay area is such a small place. I grew up in Belmont, my grandma worked as a secretary in the science department at Stanford. I know and love the rolling hills of 280. But it still felt like such a random coincident when I ran into Theresa & Anupam at their friend Cal’s wedding in woodside, while helping out my catering friend Chef Stephanie. In a few weeks I hope to share a shoot I worked on with Steph at one of my favorite venues.

Venue: Los Altos History Museum
Florist: Nasreen Ahmed 
Makeup – Amanda Pelham
Hair – Updos by Mina
Caterers: Silver Spoon (Indian) & Divine Catering (western food)
Horse: Vintage Carriage Company
Videographer: Marmalade sky films
DJ: Toofan Sounds

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Los Altos Mehndi Party

This was Theresa & Anupam’s Mehndi party in the Los Altos hills. I loved the Indian musician, She was fantastic and got everyone dancing.  I joined in the festivities and  had Mehendi done on my wrists, so that I could still use my hands, ha. The food was authentic & very tasty. The potted plants outside the tent were a gift, what a great idea!

The authentic Indian food was from Silver Spoon. The talented & fast Henna artist was Rachna of Henna and Beyond. And the Sangeet singer was  Gungun Kapoor.

This party was so much fun to photograph.
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SANTA CRUZ MOUNTAINS WEDDING

Angela + Farhad’s wedding was at Sanborn park in Saratoga. Their wedding was really sweet, and everyone was so loving. I am grateful to our mutal friend Lauren, who referred me. One of my favorite moments was when Angela surprised Farhad with a pocket watch with a photo of his mother inside. To help Farhad remember and feel that his mother was close on their wedding day. My other favorite moment was when Farhad surprised Angela by performing the song he wrote to prepose to her. They met at UC Berkeley, and the story goes that she was won over by his stellar lead drumming skills. However, the truth is she fell for him because of his humility, light-hearted nature & self-assuredness.

Their wedding was very unique & DIY. The color scheme was rainbow. The inspiration came from a trip they took to Nepal and India. To Angela the vibrant colors conveys joy and celebration. They had a Persian ceremony. And the backdrop was made from recycled Indian sari, and the pennants strung over the reception area is made from handmade Indonesian batik.

They made each other’s ring at Fitzgerland Jewelry Studio in NY when Angela was in grad school at Columbia. They turned out beautiful! The same day they made their rings they saw the old western swing band, they hired for their wedding called Brian Cloud Western Swing.

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Photo booth by FROM SF WITH LOVE!  Thank you to my husband Tim for running the booth & camping with me, he’s the best!

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