How I became a San Francisco wedding photographer
It may seem kind of weird that someone who has gone through so so many years of schooling to earn a prestigious degree would just up and leave their field for something so incredibly different. It definitely wasn’t an overnight decision, and actually isn’t uncommon in the science field. It took many years of backs and forth's and ups and downs for me to finally say enough is enough! So where does photography come in with all this? Well, I took up photography as a sort of outlet from all things grad school; starting out with a little point and shoot camera I had at the time. A few years into my program my parents got me DSLR as a gift for passing my qualifying exam. For those who don’t know what that is…it’s basically one big torture-fest comprising of 1. writing a research proposal, 2. cramming all things knowledge of your field into your tiny brain, then 3. being pummeled with questions by a committee of professors until you feel like hiding in a cave for the rest of your life. When you get through this you’ve shaved a few years off your life and are allowed to continue on with your Ph.D. program.
At around the same time, me and Geo had gotten engaged, and I was researching photographers for our own wedding. While searching through all the beautiful images, I was inspired! Weddings are so beautiful and so happy and there are so many opportunities for a photographer to create amazing art. I wanted to be able to produce images like that. Luckily, it just so happened that we had a lot of friends getting married that year I happily took my fancy new camera to these weddings and photographed anything I could without disturbing the actual photographer. I tried to capture events, details, and angles that the photographer didn’t. I was mainly doing this for fun at the time but I gave our friends any images that I took and they loved them!
I enjoyed taking photos so much, I asked friend and family couples to do portrait shoots with me so I had more opportunities to practice. Upon seeing some of my work, one of my husband’s good friends asked me to be her wedding photographer. I was ridiculously excited but terrified at the same time. I shot this wedding, my first, in November of 2010, only about a month after our own wedding. Everything seemed to just expand out from there. Throughout 2011 I had other friends and family members ask me to photograph their weddings. The more work I had to show in my portfolio, the more people would ask me to take photos for them. I spent all of my free time researching and learning anything I could about photography.
Later in 2011 I tried to take a whack at advertising and started booking weddings! I just wanted to jump up 1000 miles high! After so many years being lost in a career I had grown completely apathetic towards, feeling so drawn to something and enjoying doing it was a complete breath of fresh air. It was at this point I wanted wedding photography to be my career one day. Despite all the excitement, it’s just so hard to let go of a life you’ve known for so long. So I tried to continue to move forward with my science career after graduation and use my degree. After two short-what should have been amazing-pos-doc positions it finally clicked that if my heart isn’t fully in it, it’s just not going to work. In early 2014, shortly after we came to the Bay Area, I took a leap of faith, left my post-doc position, and quit science completely to pursue my business full time. I don’t regret it one bit.
Since I’ve started, I’ve been so fortunate to have had the opportunity to photograph so many amazing and creative weddings and to have met a lot of awesome people. Grad school was rough but photographing weddings helped me get through it. I’m so thankful to so many people. My friends and family who helped me get some experience when I was first starting out. Those of you in Rochester who gave me a chance to really get this business off the ground by having me be your wedding photographer. Those of you in the Bay Area who’ve booked with me when I started advertising here despite only having been in the area for a few months! Good friends we’ve met through photography. My amazing parents for being totally ok with and supportive of me not using my degree. Lastly, I’m so incredibly thankful to Geo who has been my partner in crime every step of the way in starting and moving forward with this business. While he may say this is my business, we are in fact a husband and wife team! Geo has been by my side as my assistant for every single wedding I’ve shot. We’ve been married since 10.10.10 and every second is amazing. ❤︎
I am always seeing myself get better and better and more creative with each wedding I shoot. I am an extreme perfectionist and I promise I will go above and beyond to capture your event. I am continuing to strive for the best and can only get better. I love shooting weddings and being there from the planning process to finally seeing your day come alive celebrating spending the rest of your life with your best friend. Capturing someone’s special day and giving people those memories in photo form is an experience I’ve been so fortunate to go through and is something that I absolutely love. Most couples put their heart and soul into planning their wedding so you want someone who is capturing your day to also put their heart and soul into capturing it. I only invest my heart and soul into things I love, which would be my family (including my cats!), good friends, and photography.
I feel so lucky to be able to do something I really enjoy doing. In the words of Conan O’Brien “Nobody in life gets exactly what they thought they were going to get. But if you work really hard and you’re kind, amazing things will happen!” Doing wedding photography is my realized dream and I’m so glad I’ve decided to leave my science career behind and pursue this full time.
I applaud and thank you if you’ve actually read that entire thing! haha! Please take a look at my portfolio for some of my favorite weddings and portraits and my blog for my latest and greatest. I hope you enjoy looking through this site and my photos and if you’re interested in hiring me (and helping me continue to make my dream a reality!) drop me a message through my Contact page!
Please also check out “My style” and “Packages” for current prices.
❤︎ Thank you for your interest ❤︎