Portland Courthouse Wedding

It can be easy to fall into the rhythm of your city, head down, following your daily routines, somewhat oblivious to your surroundings. However, sometimes a gentle reminder, which for us came in the form of an elopement shoot, can serve as a great reminder of the natural beauty that is at our fingertips in Portland.

Shannon and Sean are a lovely, easy to work with couple and we're so happy that all seemed to align to bring this Michigan based pair to have a Portland Courthouse Wedding. This shoot was a great opportunity to see our city through the eyes of a visitor and to get some really good photos that not only capture the love between these two, but also some of the highlights of the many faces of the Pacific Northwest.

With their wedding party in tow, we were able to capture natural light portraits of the couple and their close friends outside of the Multnomah County Courthouse and the surrounding area, and we couldn't resist shooting under the Portland marquee at the Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall. One of our favorite downtown scenes was shot in a somewhat unexpected space, under the blooming trees outside the façade of the Edith-Green-Wendell Wyatt Federal Building. Shannon and Sean were great sports as they soaked up the sights and received a continuous stream of congratulatory shouts from the downtown passerby.

After catching a few of the iconic spots downtown, the group traveled to Pittock Mansion to capture a different side of Portland. We got some great group and couple shots on the Wildwood trail, while also capturing inspiring frames of the couple overlooking the city.

We are grateful not only for the opportunity to meet this couple and their friends, but also for an opportunity to fall in love with our city again. We only scratched the surface of photo shoot worthy locations in Portland and can't wait for future shoots. If you're planning a Portland elopement or courthouse wedding of your own, we'd love to hear from you! See more of our work here and drop us a line!

WeddingsChris Brodell
Wedding at Chapel of Our Lady Presidio

Romance, natural scenery, stunning views-these aren’t usually the first words that come to mind when describing a former military place. However, residents of San Francisco will readily agree that the Presidio is one of the city’s natural gems. Old barracks and meal halls have been transformed into a gorgeous backdrop for weddings, special events, or just a sunny SF weekend.

Kathleen and Joshua knew that this San Francisco landmark was the perfect spot for their nuptials. They started their day at the gorgeous Inn at the Presidio, had their beautiful ceremony at the Chapel of Our Lady, followed by a reception at The Commissary. The presidio is one of those wonderful locations that make you feel like you are out in nature and off the beaten path while still being close enough for you to meander into the thick of the city.

We loved the huge windows in the Chapel of Our Lady, which allowed the light to stream through and provide a warm background to the charming indoor chapel ceremony. Joshua and Kathleen walked out of the chapel through a line of exuberant friends and family members who greeted the new couple with streamers and shouts of joy. We loved capturing the moment that Kathleen walked out of the chapel with her arms outspread with pure exhilaration.

The couple didn't have to travel far to enjoy the rest of their evening at the beautifully appointed Commissary. Their love for San Francisco was evident throughout the night, especially in the elegant wedding cake, which featured the silhouette of the city skyline and Golden Gate Bridge. This wedding was not only elegant, chic and beautifully executed, but there was also an intentional atmosphere of fun that punctuated the event. It’s not everyday that we get to photograph bridesmaids playing a game of cornhole!

We loved working with Kathleen and Joshua and look forward to more weddings with more couples that love living in the Bay Area.

WeddingsChris Brodell
Wedding at the Gardens at Heather Farm

The Gardens at Heather Farm is such a beautiful venue and among one of our favorites in the Bay Area to shoot a wedding at (check out some of our other favorite outdoor wedding venues in Oakland). The afternoon sun that blanketed the grounds of Heather Farms on Emily and Ben’s wedding day presented a beautiful backdrop for a day full of fun, adventure and love- attributes of the couple themselves.

We have photographed a lot of weddings over the past decade, but we never get tired of capturing the moments on each unique wedding day and truly appreciating the work and attention that couples put into to making the day special not only for themselves but for their family and friends. One touch that we really loved at Ben and Emily’s wedding was a table that displayed the wedding photos of their family members. This highlighted one of the biggest aspects that we love about wedding photography, which is helping families preserve generational memories. It is great to know that the pictures we have captured throughout the years will one day be placed on tables such as these.

The ceremony and reception were filled with bouquets of soft, beautiful floral arrangement that coordinated with the romantic pastels of the bridesmaid dresses, which there were ten of (evidence of how well loved this couple is)! The couples wrote their own vows to each other and it was hard not to get a bit emotional ourselves when we listened to the stories of how their love has grown so far and how they will intentionally foster it’s continual growth. It is a pleasure to look back at photographs of the couple under the wooden gazebo draped with natural greenery and know that this was a moment that they were able to convey just how much they love each other while surrounded by their friends and families.

Emily and Ben created an evening full of love punctuated with many thoughtful details that really highlight the beauty of a natural light venue. Cheers to Emily and Ben and cheers to love!

WeddingsChris Brodell
Nonprofit Business Headshots in Oakland

It can be easy to associate portrait photography with a yearly elementary school photo shoot or glammed up headshots for an aspiring model. However, headshots and portraits for nonprofits and other businesses in the bay area is becoming increasingly vital to helping agencies get a leg up in creating landing pages and social media content that clearly and attractively conveys their mission. The applications for portrait photography are endless and are increasingly used by companies and nonprofit organizations to draw visitors, donors, and community members alike, to their website.

Nonprofit organizations tend to value not only the clients and populations that they serve, but also have a very committed workforce. Having portraits of each employee on the website, along with their biography and contact information can lend a personal appeal to a nonprofit website. This recent natural light portrait shoot that we booked with a Bay Area nonprofit was evidence of the power of photography in creating a visual representation of the organization. They had struggled with low quality, poorly lit and mismatched photos of their staff and they wanted images that were consistent and captured their organizations surroundings in downtown Oakland. This nonprofit now not only has words to describe their mission, but also now has full color photos of the staff that helps this mission become a reality. Staff portraits on a website can add a personal touch to a nonprofit website as people who may be seeking help can be comforted that they will be greeted by a familiar face that they have seen on the website.

Environmental portrait photography is another aspect that we really enjoy delving into. Being able to shoot artisans at work, in their own workshops, with their own tools gives them the material to give their patrons a sneak peek at how their business functions.

Whether it is for a large nonprofit organization or a small pottery workshop, portrait photography allows companies and artisans alike to have a visual medium to share their work with the world.

Let us help you with your headshots and portraits!  Fill out our contact form and let us know about your project. We can't wait to hear from you!

Family Portraits in Portland

Summer is here! Which means it is a great time to schedule your family portraits in Portland. Family sessions are some of our favorite shoots to schedule, especially as we get to take photos of families enjoying the natural beauty of Portland. Our natural light photography is candid and photojournalistic and we use the plethora of parks and outdoor spaces in the Portland area to our advantage.

We have been taking family portraits for over a decade and feel really lucky to have been able to document so many growing families. The casual, outdoor style that we utilize in our sessions has helped us have consistently smooth sessions, including for the little ones who may otherwise feel confined in a smaller studio space. We love to document the joy that is elicited when families enjoy the sunshine together; an element that shines through in your final photos.

While we can recommend several outdoor locations for family sessions, we would also love to tag along on a more “adventurous” family session*. There are so many ways for families to have fun and enjoy the outdoors together and we are always open to hit the trail. We also know that corralling a family together to sit for portraits is not the easiest task to complete, but we have success in our sessions due in part to our positive attitude and our ability to go with the flow, not to mention staging and experiencing photo sessions with our own families!

Sessions can be scheduled as a mini session or full sessions, which are both 30-45 minutes in length. Mini sessions are priced at $250 and include 10 edited high-resolution images. The full sessions are priced at $300 and include access to the entire gallery of edited high-resolutions images (most sessions yield 20+ edited images). 

*please note that a more remote location may impact the session fee

For more information about our family sessions or to check our availability, fill out our contact form and we'll get back to you right away. We look forward to meeting you and your loved ones!

FamilyChris Brodell