I recently returned from the San Francisco Bay Area where I was shooting Tara and Gary’s wedding at City Hall! Tara and Gary had a 20’s style theme to their wedding weekend and reception, which was a lot of fun. They kept their dress/tux combo more toward the modern side as you see above, but the rest of the wedding party and guests were all dressed and encouraged to keep their styles closer to what you’d expect in the Great Gatsby or similar. My favorite part were all the youngest kids/cousins/etc running around in their outfits!
For those who don’t know, I met Tara about four years ago at Tom and Roxanne’s wedding in Monterey for Roxanne’s beach wedding. Tara and Roxanne are childhood friends and Tara was one of the many bridesmaids running around that weekend.
Roxanne and Tara during Roxanne & Tom’s wedding reception 4 years ago.
Tara and I have stayed in touch on Facebook over the last couple years and now mostly comment back and forth about triathlons and training – I’m bugging her to do the Tahoe Half Ironman next year when I go to do the full. Roxanne, sign up for the Half Iron and go too! haha!
Well, when Tara started planning her wedding a while back she reached out to me about shooting for her and Gary as I had done years ago for Roxanne. Dates were selected, details worked out, and after many more months the wedding date rolled around.
The rehearsal and wedding were both in Downtown San Francisco – an area I don’t usually get a chance to shoot. The rehearsal evening was pretty quick and was at the hotel everyone was staying at. The ceremony the next day though was at City Hall – which is gorgeous. I thought it was going to be a bigger hassle dealing with camera gear/etc, but it was surprisingly easy. After the ceremony we went down to the water for a few photos before heading to the Athletic Club for the reception where we were be all night with the rest of the guests.
As usual I’ll leave the rest for captions. So click past the break for just nearly 300 images from Tara and Gary’s wedding weekend!
Tara, getting everyone lined up to start the rehearsal
I think everyone spent more time laughing and joking during the first run through then actually paying attention to the order of events. haha!
One more run through before dinner
Early the next morning the girls started bright and early. Tara was sitting on the bed laughing with her grandmother
Tara handed out her presents for the bridesmaids
some toasting after breakfast arrived
Time to start letting her hair out and continue getting ready
Tara mentioned she was hungry… everyone came to help!
Tara’s cousin Nadescha was doing hair for everyone
It was long before Tara started making faces at me while I was shooting… this went on most of the day actually. hahaha!
Tom came by to visit for a bit, too! He was filling the girls in on the last part of the night before that they couldn’t remember.
So the hotel provides condoms in these funny little cases in the room… So of course we had to take a photo of the rings with them. hahaha!
Downstairs the guys were starting to get dressed
Gary, helping long time friend and Best Man Rodney with his bowtie
Gary had also assembled boxes for each of his groomsmen gifts that he handed out as everyone got dressed that morning.
Back upstairs Tara was getting her makeup done
Getting the dress on!
Tara’s dress was a side-zip, so she was laughing at having to have her arm up awkwardly as the girls got it all fastened
Roxanne, cheesin’ it up for the video cameras
Last up was jewelry and then Tara was ready to go!
There were plenty of cameras that day though… haha! Video at every focal length!
All the girls, looking amazing!
Ready to get married! And looking amazing!
I went ahead of the girls and joined the guys on their trip to City Hall
Everyone was trying to get their boutonnieres straight
Upstairs the guests were arriving
All the kids were looking sharp! I think the girls totally win for their awesome dresses though
Almost time for things to start, so the girls came out of hiding from down the hall were they were at
The before-the-ceremony selfie with the bride!
Sat with the bride for a few minutes. The combination of the un-expected warmth inside the Hall, combined with a hectic morning and hunger had Tara feeling a little woozy before things started. She powered through and rocked that wedding though!
Tom, getting ready to start the ceremony
There was some question as to if these two would make it all the way down the aisle… they did awesome!
Right as Gary saw Tara coming down the aisle..
A kiss for dad
Exchanging of leis
So as Tom opened up the wedding and said a few words he made a joke that only Tara and Gary laughed at for the most part… I think it was lost on a lot of the family..
Right after that Tom basically was like “welllllp, guess I’ll just do the wedding stuff and skip anything funny”. lol. I had your back, Tom. I was laughing. haha!
As tricky as lighting was in most of City Hall it was a beautiful ceremony. And incredibly fitting for their theme that day
Gary, exchanging vows with Tara
Rodney had the rings for safe keeping
Gary, giving Tara her ring
And saying a few words
Tara giving Gary his ring..
.. and the rest of her vows
A few more words from Tom…
And they’re married!!
So before we started all the photos Tara was chatting with Tom and it looks like it’s just any ol’ Friday afternoon. Meanwhile there is total madness going on right behind me! haha!
We rocked through a few big family group shots
Looking amazing everyone!
After the wedding guests had left we had a bit of time to do a few more photos around City Hall
After photos we all hung out and waited for the limo to come pick us up. Friday afternoon in SF meant a lot of traffic. So we had a bit of time to wait.
Once in the limo we headed down to the water for some photos. Tara laid down on Gary since she was pretty tired at this point
We had to cut one of the stops out of our photo excursion simply because traffic was too bad. But we did get one last shot in Chinatown before heading to the reception
And we were able to jump on a cable car briefly as it came by for a photo!
Gary and Tara had these little custom bottles of liquor with everyone’s name on them. Pretty cool
Gary’s a fireman, so their guest sign-in board had a hatchet, naturally
Time to get things started! The MC introducing the wedding party once more
Mr. and Mrs. Agbin!
As dinner service was getting started Tara and Gary started walking tables early to spend more time greeting guests
The dessert table was starting to get set up. Tara went out to see her cake
Cutest little custom topper!
So this was some sort of game they were playing where it pretty much results in the bride/groom kissing…
..I didn’t hear the rules, though.
Buttttt clearly it worked. And I’m sure all these photos ended up on Facebook about 5min later. haha!
A little later Tara and Gary finally had a bit of time to sit and eat dinner
Best Man Rodney got up to give his speech..
He shared a story about when he knew he wanted to be Gary’s friend… it was back in grade school when they were selected to be moved into a different classroom. Gary cried and Rodney said he thought something like “This is who I want to be friends with, because he cried so no one will pick on me now!” Pretty good logic, really. Haha!
Gary was laughing at the story the whole time Rodney was talking
Next up was Roxanne, Matron of Honor
She talked about growing up together with Tara..
.. and how they were perfect friends because as teens their taste in men was completely different so they never fought over boys! Haha! She also talked about Tara meeting Gary and how he immediately was different in every way
Following the speeches it was time for the first dance
Tara and Gary sang to each other, laughed and joked during the dance
Next up was the Daddy-Daughter dance
Following the Daddy-Daugther was the Mother-Son. However Gary’s Mom passed so he danced with his Aunt!
They were both all smiles! Very sweet
These two were in tears nearly the whole time! I think they’re Gary’s cousins? Do I have that correct? Either way, it was really touching
Between the donuts, the chocolate covered Oreos, and cake pops, there was something for everyone
After the band had played several songs they suddenly changed it up for a moment. Tara pulled a chair to the center of the dance floor. Gary seemed to think it was her, perhaps the garter toss, for a moment until Tara made him sit down…
She had learned a hula! Tara is part Hawaiian in her heritage, and she learned a hula for Gary!
He had the biggest smile when he realized what was happening
She rocked it, too!
Friends and family were all there watching as well
Tara pulled Gary up briefly to dance with her as well.
All the girls fixing each others hair
A bit later it was time to cut the cake.
This is probably my favorite photo… they were struggling to cut the cake….
And it simply would NOT cut…
Then Tara remembered that they only had the small top layer to cut. The bottom part wasn’t actually cake! Haha!
So of course the top part cut easily
After cake and dessert it was time for more dancing and socializing
Tara and Gary were outside enjoying the cooler air
Long and tiring day but I had get a shot of these two who were busying breaking it down on the dance floor! You guys might remember Roxanne and Tom’s gorgeous beach wedding in Monterey 4 years ago.. See below
If you guys want to check out Tom and Roxanne’s wedding weekend, you can do so by clicking HERE
Had to get a photo with the bride and groom as the night was winding down.
Gary and Tara spent the last part of the evening on the dance floor gettin’ down
Last song of the night… so they made it a slow one..
And that was it! A very busy day bouncing around the City with Tara and Gary! But their City Hall wedding was gorgeous and the 20’s themed reception was a blast. Honestly the only downside I can think of, if you want to call it that, was it was windy and cold at the waterfront for photos! But hey, that’s SF for you!
Thank you to both Tara and Gary for having me up to shoot for you guys! I hope you enjoyed these images so far. I have many more to get through and finish editing before I send the rest out to you!