This was a very special love shoot. The San Diego couple came all the way to San Francisco for a well-deserved vacation and for this shoot to celebrate their newlywed status.
Latisha and Cena have had a tough go of it recently, but they continue to find respite from life’s difficulties in one another. Having got married in their hometown in summer 2018, this shoot in the fall was their first chance to take a breather and just enjoy one another with zero stress.
Latisha specifically wanted to incorporate a classic San Francisco street feel, but at the same time pair it with some nature areas and pretty architecture. We started outside the De Young Museum with its distinctive copper façade, and made our way to the California Academy of Sciences via the Music Concourse and the small tree-lined area by the Rideout Fountain.
As it was super close by, we also wandered into the Shakespeare Garden for its elegant and refined feel and to get that hit of greenery.
The California Academy of Sciences has spectacular concrete walls which speak to me because they act as a neutral, slightly edgy backdrop which this couple loved. Bathed in the late afternoon sun, the concrete really set the scene for the hip style of this city-loving couple. We played around with poses and I like to think I brought out what the couple wanted to express personality-wise in their photos.
Latisha and Cena had a couple of outfit changes for the level of formality of the settings. We started with a more casual look, then Latisha changed into a dress which was so flattering on her. I really recommend dresses of this style! Long enough to catch the breeze but not so long you have to gather it up or risk tripping over it. It creates a flattering, tall silhouette. It provides beautiful flowy dynamism, especially if it catches a San Francisco breeze! The print is neither too blocky, nor so small it gets lost – it just photographs very well. Cena’s jacket even said ‘Zoe’ on it, which I, of course, loved!
To finish up, we walked a few minutes to 10th Ave & Fulton for some of that iconic SF street vibe. Latisha saw this as symbolic of their standing strong amid the chaos and craziness of this past year: the calm in the eye of the storm.
Like most couples, Latisha and Cena had never been professionally photographed before – they didn’t actually have a photographer on their wedding day. So, this was like the wedding shoot for them.
I try to vibe off each couple as much as I can, and I give more direction to help with nerves at the start of the shoot, then as we progress through I find that it gets easier and less awkward. I try to capture the unplanned, spontaneous interactions while giving posing guidance to help you get the best from your shoot.
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