Urban couples photography session at Port View Park, Oakland

October 10, 2017
man dips woman at sunset shoot port view park oakland

My taste for the weird and wonderful often leads me to places that are derelict, deserted or undiscovered. I love adventuring with couples that are open to my suggestions for couples / engagement photography locations that are somewhat off the beaten path!

A couples shoot or ‘love shoot’ is an opportunity for experimenting with different looks, styles and being adventurous with locations. Too often, a couple only ever has professional photography on their wedding day.

That’s too bad, because you may well be wearing uncomfortable formal clothes or feeling the pressures of the day. Perhaps the time for the couples pictures is severely limited. Or maybe you feel those pictures don’t really reflect the day-to-day reality of your life together.

Whatever the reason, a couples shoot or ‘love shoot’ is a great idea for making images that honor who you both are, and allowing a little more time to let the nerves settle so the real emotions start to shine through. And, no-one’s waiting impatiently for you to get back to the party.

Paris and Lovell are an Oakland-based couple though they’ve lived far and wide across the US, due in large part to their backgrounds serving in the Navy.

Lovell is in school for fashion business management & product design, and makes his own clothes, including the two different shirts he wore for this photography session. He previously ran a computer business in LA. Paris has worked in film and is in media school now studying directing.

Together they run a vanlife YouTube channel. Their ultimate goal is to move to the Bahamas in a couple years’ time!

They met while they were on active duty and got married in a small town in rural Washington while serving. They’ve been married for 3 years and never had a professional photographer at their wedding. Being the highly unconventional couple they are, they married after only being together for a few short months. ‘Why wait?’ they thought.

Meeting these two amazing people, it’s clear that they are so massively into each other. They canoodle like a pair of teenagers who are left alone for the first time! This is one of the best parts of my job – being able to encourage and make my couples feel comfortable over the course of what is a very intimate (and odd!) undertaking.

Whether newly engaged, tying the knot or celebrating wedding anniversaries, I love to hear my couples’ love stories and often ask about their stories when we meet. Not just as an ice-breaker and in the hopes they relive all the romantic moments and epic twists in the road that got them where they are today, but because I’m genuinely fascinated by love and I believe there is no typical love story.

This hard-working, hard-hustling couple was a joy to get to know and it’s my hope the images I made for them will be cherished for the rest of their lives. Oh, and that the feeling of fun was mutual!

couple standing by gate entrance at port view park oakland black couple smooching at engagement session hands grasping each other's leg african american couple in oakland embrace playfully couples hands on woman's waist entwined close up of woman's face being cuddled by her man couple smooching on blanket with cranes in background man and woman in love look out at the bay with gantry cranes in backgroundcouple walking on engagement photography session oakland couple dancing and twirling man and woman in love stylish pose at engagement photoshoot port view park looking down at man and woman's touching hands showing engagement ring looking down on couple in love from above port view park couple standing with large freight ship in background couple walking away on pier at port view park oakland couple canoodling on wooden bench close up of black couple cuddling at edgy urban photoshoot man lifts his woman off the ground at sunset in port view park laughter at sunset man and woman in love man dips woman at sunset shoot port view park oakland silhouette of woman in man's arms at sunset back to back couple with san francisco skyline in background man protectively places arm around woman while watching sunset man and woman in love shoot embrace with eyes closed man and woman at sunset playful port view park shoot silhouetted figures of man and woman at sunset close up woman leading man clasping hands close up of engagement ring as woman leads man by handjumping shot at port view park oakland with container ship in background