Updated in January 2021


Hi friends! A little under a year ago, I switched website hosts, which means I also had to copy over every blog post with text, images, and then go through and re-format it + keyword photos. This was one of my favorite posts, but since I was trying to market to Chicago more than SF, I didn't end up copying it over right away. It's been sitting in my drafts since then. Olivia shared some of these photos on her Instagram yesterday and we exchanged some kind words, and I realized I had never published this on my current website/blog.


It was truly an experience I will remember as I grow older, and I still think about it often. So as you go through and read this post that might not have added up in a Covid-filled world, know this all happened back in September 2019, when the world was still bright and good and normal.


Enjoy!

I was in California this fall to shoot a beautiful vineyard wedding.

My mom always told me not to talk to strangers growing up, so I found these two on the internet, reached out, met up with them in a city I've never been in, and hopped in the car and hung out for a while.

They were the cutest, most easy-going people. Olivia + Matt live about an hour outside of San Francisco, and we found each other through Instagram and set up a time to do engagement photos while I was in town. They had plans to visit the in laws and hit up an art and wine festival in the city while I was there. It ended up working out perfectly, because I was free on the day they were going to be in town! These San Francisco engagement pictures reaffirmed my belief that I need to head back to California soon.

man in navy suit and woman in white dress holding hands laughing at Golden Gate Park engagement pictures
man in navy suit and woman in white dress holding hands laughing at Golden Gate Park engagement pictures
young couple in navy and white standing under tree at sunset in Golden Gate Park engagement photos
young man dipping his fiance in a white dress at sunset in San Francisco
young couple in navy and white standing under tree at sunset in Golden Gate Park engagement photos
young man dipping his fiance in a white dress at sunset in San Francisco
man in navy suit twirling woman in white dress at sunset in hills in front of Golden Gate Bridge in background

Olivia + Matt were so sweet, fun, and welcoming. It was a lot of back and forth to organize their session and find a date and time that worked for everyone, and I am so so thankful for them working through that craziness with me!


WE MET ON THE HILLS WITH A VIEW OF THE GOLDEN GATE BRIDGE IN THE BACKGROUND.


I felt like I had known them for so long after only a few minutes, and our session ended up feeling like I was hanging out with friends.


black and white image man kissing woman on her forehead with eyes closed for San Francisco engagement pictures
man in navy suit leading woman in white dress through hills near Golden Gate Bridge engagement pictures

As much as I love shooting in Chicago, there is something so different and special about the light in San Francisco engagement pictures, the rolling hills, some fog, and of course a bridge everyone who grew up watching Full House recognizes.

So many of these photos are so different than what I can make in Chicago, and this black and white photo is my favorite...might print it out and hang it on my own wall!

woman in white lace dress leading man in suit through San Francisco hills at sunset engagement pictures
man in blue suit kissing woman in white dress at sunset in San Francisco

I'm the type of person who constantly wants change, a new challenge, and something to be excited about.


I'm always wondering about my future--will I stay in Chicago? End up somewhere else? Maybe California? I've been to both LA and SF now, and I can say with certainty that the Northern half of California was my favorite. I loved being outdoors, the mountains, the greenery that didn't seem to be as lush in the Southern half.

man in navy suit twirling woman in white dress at sunset in hills in front of Golden Gate Bridge in background
man in navy suit twirling woman in white dress at sunset in hills in front of Golden Gate Bridge in background
man picking up woman in white dress kissing in front of Golden Gate Bridge engagement pictures

We walked and explored around the bridge, and then went to the Palace of Fine Arts--which is really cool, by the way, but we were all wondering what it’s there for besides looking pretty. LOL. The grounds at the Palace are beautiful and it was pretty quiet besides a few runners and other photographers. I definitely want to head back and take more engagement pictures at the Palace of Fine Arts!

San Francisco has so many engagement photo locations, but this is definitely one of the ones I wanted to check out during my time there.

man and woman hugging and smiling in front of Palace of Fine Arts San Francisco engagement pictures
man in blue suit picking up woman in white dress kissing in front of Palace of Fine Arts in the summer
man in blue suit leading woman in white dress in front of Palace of Fine Arts San Francisco engagement pictures
man and woman hugging and smiling in front of Palace of Fine Arts San Francisco engagement pictures

None of us were in a rush, so I tested out some night photos and was SO excited to see how they turned out! The three of us grabbed dinner together afterward, and then Olivia + Matt gave me a mini tour of San Francisco on the way back to my hotel.

silhouette of two hands interlocking under roof of Palace of Fine Arts at night time

I am seriously in love with California. And this San Francisco engagement session just made me fall even harder. ;)


IF YOU’RE IN CALIFORNIA AND LOOKING FOR A FUN PHOTOGRAPHER TO EXPLORE, CAPTURE YOUR STORY, AND (MAYBE) GRAB SOME FOOD WITH, THEN I’M YOUR GIRL!

young couple in front of Palace of Fine Arts at night, lit up with blue sky in background
young couple in front of Palace of Fine Arts at night, lit up with blue sky in background
silhouette of hands interlocking under ceiling of Palace of Fine Arts at night time

If you loved this San Francisco engagement session, you might also like this North Avenue Beach sunrise engagement!

I’m based in Chicago but travel anywhere - contact me to plan your session or wedding!

And if you're reading this in 2021 or after, follow me on Instagram to stay connected. I'm a pretty frequent traveler when it's a covid-free world, so I may even be back to San Francisco soon. I sure hope I am.