Zoe’s Golden Gate Club Presidio San Francisco Bat Mitzvah – from a top san francisco candid documentary wedding photographer

I was honored to be an associate photographer for Bruce Forrester Photography, with Jennifer Paschal at the Golden Gate Club. It is always a special feeling to be able to shoot for another studio and create wonderful images for them.

The Golden Gate Club is nestled in the hills of San Francisco’s Presidio district. Each and every time I photograph there I am amazed at how the building is transformed so perfectly to suit the special event that is held there. Young Zoe was such an adorable girl. She was ecstatic to have all her friends and family see her mature and celebrate her Bat Mitzvah. Her party was set up like a really cool amusement park. All the windows were covered and black lights were hung throughout the building so that everything glowed. There were so many super duper fun things for all her friends to do – basketball, spray paint party hats, air hockey, giant 4 person pac man, a photo booth, glow stick, party hats, a dj with dancers that choreograph moves for everyone, and a candy room only Willy Wonka would be jealous of. What made this bat mitzvah stand out from all the others, was a special pre entry red carpet. Before guests could even enter the Golden Gate Club there were a slew of photographers and videographers snapping away like paparazzi at the Oscars. This is where everyone was able to strike a pose for the cameras. One cute and quirky part of the party was the entrance to the club. Giant security guards stood blocking the doors so it resembled a VIP event. Each and every kid that went in had to be patted down and every girl was asked for their ID.  I’m sure Zoe will remember this day for the rest of her life. It truly was a phenomenal party that was not to be missed.

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Golden Gate Club Bat Mitzvah

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Golden Gate Club Bat Mitzvah

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Golden Gate Club Bat Mitzvah

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Golden Gate Club Bat Mitzvah

 

 

 

 

If you like this post and want to book a photoshoot with Liz, booking with Liz is easy. Check out how to book your session here. Or just contact Liz here.

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Cazadero Music Camp Wedding – Ellen and Dustin – from a top san francisco candid documentary wedding photographer

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Have you ever met a couple so sweet and in love and special and darling and gosh.. I can’t even describe the immense cuteness these two exuded. It was a true pleasure to be present for the wonderful sunset ceremony at Cazadero Music Camp. Ellen was breathtaking in her Grecian style gown. She effortlessly strolled through the Russian River bed to see Dustin for the first time in her dress and he in is tweed blazer and cornflower blue checked dress shirt. The bridesmaids wore midnight blue gowns and the groomsmen a simple black slack, with white dress shirt and suspenders and yellow corsages.

The ceremony was held at the summer camp band shell under beautiful chinese lanterns. Reception was in the camp lodge where Ellen and Dustin had wild flowers on every table and seeds for their friends and family to plant in their gardens. The three layer butter cream icing cake was topped with an adorable hand made miniature fire place with couch and little kitty cat. The relaxed and low key vibe the wedding and dinner had ratcheted up into a fun party vibe during dancing. Ellen tore it on on the dance floor busting out some stellar moves. Dustin made the rounds chatting up his guests and ensured that everyone was having as good as a time as could be. As the evening started to wind down the guests made their way to the camp fire pit for a roaring bonfire.

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If you like this post and want to book a photoshoot with Liz, booking with Liz is easy. Check out how to book your session here. Or just contact Liz here.

Campy Guerneville Wedding Reception – Gino and Tony – from a top san francisco candid documentary wedding photographer

I can’t get enough of Guerneville. I love it there. I mean I really really love it there. Every time I go there for a wedding I think, gosh, I need to come back here, everything is so beautiful and relaxed. The immense amount of trees make this place serene, but that’s not all, the river is so fun to float down on and the actual town of Guerneville is full of boutiques and my favorite cafe, Big Bottom Market. The people are pretty sweet too.

It’s no wonder that Gino and Tony chose this place to have a layed back wedding reception with only their closest family and friends. The two were married privately earlier in the year but wanted to celebrate with a good old fashioned cook out and pig roast. Tony’s brother brought a giant smoker and bbq so that they could fit the entire baby pig. It was pretty phenomenal. The whole afternoon was filled with fun. Kids were playing soccer, parents were sitting and enjoying the sun, and later in the afternoon a giant bonfire was lit for marshmallow roasting and snuggling next to.

Gino and Tony were so darling. They doted on one another the entire afternoon and were so grateful that all their very best friends to be there. I was truly special to see these two families joined together by the love of these two men. I wish them the very best in their lives together.

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Guerneville Same Sex Wedding Reception Cook Out

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Guerneville Same Sex Wedding Reception Cook Out

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Guerneville Same Sex Wedding Reception Cook Out

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Guerneville Same Sex Wedding Reception Cook Out

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Guerneville Wedding Reception Cook Out

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Guerneville Same Sex Wedding Reception Cook Out

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Guerneville Same Sex Wedding Reception Cook Out

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Guerneville Same Sex Wedding Reception Cook Out

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Guerneville Same Sex Wedding Reception Cook Out

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Guerneville Same Sex Wedding Reception Cook Out

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Guerneville Same Sex Wedding Reception Cook Out

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Guerneville Same Sex Wedding Reception Cook Out

 

 

 

 

 

 

If you like this post and want to book a photoshoot with Liz, booking with Liz is easy. Check out how to book your session here. Or just contact Liz here.

James and Alastair’s Engagement, Embarcadero, San Francisco, CA – from a top san francisco candid documentary wedding photographer

What a fun engagement shoot! James and Alastair really wanted their shoot to be candid and photojournalistic. And that is just my style. Doing the traditional San Francisco iconic backdrops was not what they were looking for. They wanted to have their engagement shoot be a time for them to warm up in front of the camera so they’d be ready for their wedding day photos.

How better to keep things comfortable than to shoot at home. We had an amazing time in their kitchen as Alastair made one of his signature pies. On the menu for the day was blueberry.  All the ingredients were laid out and the two got to making the most delicious pie I’ve had in a long time. James is pretty lucky to have such a great cook.

While the pie was in the oven we popped up to the roof for a few photos where you could see Twin Peaks in the background. Then down to the garden and out to front of the building for a few more photos and then some photos with the kitties Sharla and Onyx. It was a great afternoon with James and Alastair and I felt really lucky to be invited into their home to see a glimpse of their life and their love for each other.  I’m really looking forward to their wedding day at Hotel Vitale and capturing more great moments.

 

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James and Alastair came to me as a referral from Snapknot. If you have found me because of my photos there, please email me directly from their to get a discount on your photos.

If you like this post and want to book a photoshoot with Liz, booking with Liz is easy. Check out how to book your session here. Or just contact Liz here.

Stow Lake Golden Gate Park San Francisco Wedding Anniversary – Claire and Duncan – from a top san francisco candid documentary wedding photographer

Golden Gate Park is such a gorgeous setting to walk about, and what a better place than Stow Lake to celebrate a 10 year wedding anniversary. If you’ve never been to this part of the park it has a little bit of everything. There’s the lake, of course, but then there’s a waterfall, two bridges leading you on and off the island, multiple benches to sit and contemplate, a boat house where you can rent peddle boats and row boats, a cute cafe with a huskie who helps out customers, a Chinese pagoda, and in the middle an island that climbs and climbs and climbs to a peak called Strawberry Hill where you can find loads of butterflies if you have the patience to wait for them to show up on the petals of flowers.

Originally from England, Claire and Duncan have been living in the Bay Area for many years. They wanted to commemorate this milestone in their lives with a photoshoot in one of the places they both spend many hours together, either on morning walks with their two cute pups or out for runs. The park is like a second home to them as they live just steps away.

Ten years goes by in the blink of an eye, yet the energy and love these two have for one another is just as strong as when they met. When they look into each other’s eyes, it’s almost as though they know exactly what the other is thinking. Claire and Duncan are really such a sweet and loving couple. I was especially happy to be able to photograph this time in their lives and hope to be able to capture them together just as loving for their twenty year anniversary.

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Golden gate park san francisco wedding anniversary photography

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Golden gate park san francisco wedding anniversary photography

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Golden gate park san francisco wedding anniversary photography

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Golden gate park san francisco wedding anniversary photography

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

If you like this post and want to book a photoshoot with Liz, email her at lizcaruana@gmail.com or go to her website at lizcaruanaweddings.com

RUSTIC HIDDEN VILLA, LOS ALTOS WEDDING – from a top san francisco candid documentary wedding photographer

If you’ve never been to this rustic wedding location, Hidden Villa, is pretty much one of the best out there.
It has trails, barns, farms, a lodge, and lots and lots of animals. I highly suggest you check out Hidden Villa in Los Altos California on a day hike or just to pet the chickens, goats, or cows. Yes, that’s right pet the animals. They encourage that. You can walk right into the yards. I was elated to be able to photograph this wedding as an associate photographer for Erin Beach.
How do you make this rustic location more beautiful, well, have a wedding there of course?!!
Susan and Viktor met online and most of their first dates involved walking their sweet pup Charlie.  They bonded over their love of animals and their pup was dressed in a tux and the chosen ring-bearer at the wedding!  Susan made him a suit to match the groom and groomsmen by altering a suit meant for a 3 year old boy. Her sewing skills did the trick because Charlie looked adorable and fit right in.
Susan’s dress and hair were Grecian style. Long, flowing, and perfectly elegant.  The bridesmaids dresses had a gorgeous sway to them following Susan’s Grecian lead. Flowers were a mix of pink, purple, yellow, orange and red, popping out against the lush green backdrop of the Lodge front grounds.
Both families and friends gave the sweetest speeches at the family style dinner toasting and dancing well into the night.
Susan and Viktor chose an amazing Journey cover band that played rock classics like “Don’t Stop Believing” and “Anyway you want it” to let loose to and break out their moves. Any and all who were their took the opportunity to sing along to the power ballads and dance their hearts out.
It is truly inspiring to see a couple that is a perfect match. Their life together will definitely be filled with love and laughter!
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If you like this post and want to book a wedding with Liz, email her at lizcaruana@gmail.com or go to the website at lizcaruanaweddings.com

RUSTIC WEDDING AT DAWN RANCH LODGE IN GUERNEVILLE CALIFORNIA – from a top san francisco candid documentary wedding photographer

The all white bridal cabin, the daisy filled meadow for the reception, and the tree lined pool and cabana area for the after party. There are so many wonderful details that Gwen and Cory crafted around their color theme of turquoise and red, it’s stunning to see them all play together.

The Groomsmen’s suspenders and pocket squares, the Bridesmaids dresses, jewelry and flowers, even their nails follow the theme.
The matching does not stop there! Gwen, a clothing designer by trade, created the table runners, candleholders, place cards and succulent displays donned in a different print all in theme. The cake topper, hand made by Cory, was the cutest wood and felt figurines in the likeness of the bride and groom, including a tiny banjo played by Cory and a replica of Mr. Peanut their rescue pup and ring bearer.

This teeny version of the newlyweds stood atop their three layer turquoise lace and red strawberry cake. Gwen’s friends are truly wonderful and helped out with everything from make up, to flowers, to DJing. Gwen’s vintage dress was to die for! Long, flowing with white lace, and embroidery all accented by red Bakelite jewelry and custom-made red suede shoes. Gwen walked down the aisle arm in arm with her parents and accompanied by a single guitarist. It was fitting that bikes were incorporated into their special day as Cory proposed to Gwen at the finish of her epic ride from San Francisco to L.A.

After vows were exchanged they rode off together on a tandem with Mr. Peanut in the front basket for photos in front of the family airstream that was brought up from Gwen’s parents home in Laguna Beach, California. Travel is also a big part of the couple’s lives as Gwen and Cory make it a point to go on an epic trip every year.
Cory’s family made a special trip from his hometown of Mississauga, Canada to celebrate in the festivities of the weekend.

Gwen and Cory created a truly magical atmosphere that paired beautifully with the rustic ranch setting.

 

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 If you like this post and want to book a photoshoot with Liz, booking with Liz is easy. Check out how to book your session here. Or just contact Liz here.