I had the extreme pleasure of photographing Ana Dela Cruz and her fiancés, Jeff Lee, this past Saturday. These two are an amazing couple who just oozes of love and fun. With a couple like this, it doesn’t even feel like work but rather friends hanging out as I’m snapping some photographs of them. This is one of the reasons I love these e- sessions so much, you really get to know one another and build up a comfort level before the wedding day.
We started out Ana and Jeff’s engagement session inside the beautiful San Francisco Japanese Tea Garden. This first shot, was actually taken right outside the front entrance before it opened. It was shot with a Canon EOS 1Ds Mark II with a Canon EF 50mm f/1.2L lens with a Lastolite TriGrip at camera right.
These following shots were taken inside at various locations. I should note that while the Japanese Tea Garden is a gorgeous location, for environmental photography, it’s a nightmare of lighting conditions; lots of great backdrops, but few shaded areas. A majority of the time i was combating the sun with a single flash and/or reflector. And to add insult to injury, there are lots of narrow paths making it difficult to place light stands where you need them and out of frame. Fortunately I had fellow wedding photographer Rendy Lai on assist holding my Syl Arena light stick/pole setup.
Afterward, we took a short trip across the Tea Garden to the Botanical Garden. There are lots of great potential backdrops in here and best thing is that admission is free.
Ana and Jeff wanted to do some shoots with bamboo and it so happens that the San Francisco Botanical Gardens has a nice bamboo forest, coincidentally located at the Bamboo Pond next to Cloud Forest.
We then continued photographing the engagement session around Irving Street. These shots were taken at Crepevine, a place that Ana and Jeff frequented while they were dating. One of the hostess was so kind in helping us with reserving an outside table and even going as far a providing us free red velvet cake for some of the shots! Unfortunately I didn’t get her name to properly thank her, sorry!
Rendy and I had a lot of fun with Ana and Jeff and we can’t wait to photograph their wedding in October! You can also see what they think of us by reading their blog here.