In mid-February I travelled to San Francisco for the ultimate tourist and foodie weekend, and I loved every moment! My travel buddy Emily and I LOVE food and have dinner together a few times a week with our guys (see Em's Boulder engagement session at Flatirons Vista Trail). We were in heaven in SF. We ate oysters by the Bay Bridge, dim sum in Chinatown, clam chowder in a sourdough bread bowl on the sand near Santa Cruz, and the best pastries from Tartine and Mr. Holmes. We marveled at the redwoods at Muir Woods, strolled Fisherman's Wharf, biked the Golden Gate Park loop, hiked the beaches of the Presidio, and so much more. One of the main reasons for my trip was to visit one of my September couples, Ashley & Ryan, and photograph their engagement session! Ashley and I grew up in the same town with Ryan not far away, but she moved to California via Colorado a few years back for a job at Facebook in Cupertino. I was so thrilled when she contacted me to photograph their wedding in Delaware this fall. Not only is it truly special to photograph people you know, it's also priceless to have a reason to travel back East and visit my family in Philadelphia. Their wedding is going to be wonderful.
We began Ashley & Ryan's engagement session at Shark Fin Cove amidst soft sand, crashing waves and late afternoon sun. Shark Fin Cove is a gorgeous cove near Santa Cruz with a bluff, a beach, and even a natural tunnel. From the bluff we could look out over the ocean and admire the massive Santa Cruz mudstone rock shaped like a shark's fin (/tooth, maybe?). If you're surprised that I know it's mudstone, don't be - I am dating a climber, which means he is also an amateur geologist. After the cove we backtracked 20 minutes towards San Francisco for sunset engagement photos at Pigeon Point Lighthouse. Ashley's English Springer Spaniels Lillie and Striker tagged along in exchange for treats. The sun hitting the bluffs was magical. The ice plant succulents covering the ground with their white flowers added to the ambiance. As the temperatures started to drop we headed back to our cars to say goodbye. For mid-February, I have to say the weather held out for us beautifully. One of the best parts of the shoot was knowing that Ashley picked both locations based on where she heads every weekend with her dogs, making it a meaningful location for their photos. The entire shoot was gorgeous!