Bay Area Wedding Photographer Gabriel Harber » Fun, Artistic, Joyful Photography that is Real and Full of Stories

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With fires and storms raging and life being uncertain as it is, connecting with loved ones feels that much more important.  Chelsea and Daniel’s celebration at the Triple S Ranch, set against mature nut trees and beautiful Victorian buildings with a charred landscape just a stone throw away, was a reminder of the delicate balance of life.  Thankfully dance, good food, and merriment dominated their wedding day.  Niki Wolfe Events (Niki is the BEST), Front Porch Farms, and Golden Bell Music helped to make the day run smoothly, look great, and keep the party jumping.

Norma lost her husband and Henry lost his wife.  Through the marvels of modern day technology (JDate.com), Norma and Henry found love again.  Their sweet intimate ceremony at the Temescal Beach House in Oakland was heartfelt, full of laughter, and focused on the love these two have for each other while honoring the love they had for their previous spouses.  They were married under a quilted Chuppah made from Norma’s late husband’s clothing and Henry’s late wife’s jewelry.  There was joy and tears, and a sense that not only was the day a celebration of love, but a healing of broken hearts.

 

Weddings can be many things, and people hold these celebrations for different reasons.  Most of the people I work with have been living together for several years.  Many of the wedding traditions of the past are outdated, and are therefore passed by.  The ones that resonate with people continue to be used.  I feel that the modern wedding is about joining of families and communities in celebration and public declaration of the love and commitment that the couple personally know that they hold for one another.

In recognition of this era of freedom, I try to allow things to flow naturally so that couples can spend as much time as possible with the people they have invited to their celebration.  I try to capture the essential feeling of the wedding, the emotionally packed moments, and the ephemeral.  I like to keep it real and fun.  In the end, my hope is to show a genuine, fun, artistically interesting story of the wedding day and to work in collaboration with the couple and their guests to create an enjoyable experience for all.

I try to limit the immediate family and wedding party pictures to just a few posed combinations which I take before the ceremony.  This allows folks to go directly into cocktail hour and celebrate and eat and drink as they are naturally inclined to do.  Any additional posed groupings happen organically during the cocktail hour or reception.  I try to present myself as I truly am both in my personality and in my work in order to stay true to myself and my clients and to create a trusting and positive working relationship.

This long preamble is a way of introducing a wedding that was beautiful and fun, but somehow left the bride feeling as though I had failed to meet her expectations.  You can find her review of my work here.  The wedding was held at Ru’s Farm in Healdsburg, which is a fantastic little venue run by a wonderful couple.  It has beautiful views, well kept grounds, a gorgeous barn, mature trees and gardens, and is just big enough to accommodate a good crowd, but small enough so you can walk from one end to the other in a short amount of time.  Luisa and John had a beautiful celebration here on a hot day toward the end of June.  Their friends and family all brought wine, a live brass band rocked the house, and much merriment was had by all.