Noah Hawthorne Photography | San Francisco Wedding Photographer » San Francisco wedding photographer specializing in artistic wedding photojournalism with an elegant, personal touch. Service to the San Francisco Bay Area and destination weddings worldwide.

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Giselle & Alex | Santa Clara Mission Church Wedding | The Ranch Golf Club

Alex and Giselle were married last weekend at the Santa Clara Mission Church, followed by the wedding reception at The Ranch Golf Club in San Jose. I have been to the Santa Clara campus several times, but this was my first time visiting the campus church- with its impressive 18th century Spanish architecture. We braved an unseasonably hot day, getting ready at home- taking a few portraits at the nearby Ranch Golf Club, and then heading off to the ceremony as the cooler evening started to settle in.

Alex getting ready

Giselle and Alex seeing each other for the first time on their wedding day.

Giselle brought her Grandmother’s rosary to the ceremony, wrapped around her beautiful bouquet.

We stopped for a few moments before the ceremony to take some bridal portraits on the Santa Clara campus, just outside of the church. There were some thick imposing adobe brick walls that made for an excellent backdrop (not that Giselle needed much of a backdrop to look fantastic).

The Santa Clara Mission Church was absolutely beautiful, especially for a sunset wedding with the summer heat fading gently away.

Santa Clara Mission Church wedding

The Ranch Golf Club has a great view over San Jose and the Silicon Valley, especially at night.

The family Rojas Band also played during the wedding.

Rojas Band

Congratulations to Giselle and Alex! Thanks for making my job so easy. More photos are still to come!

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  • LibbyJames - October 8, 2009 - 4:41 am

    wow, what a fantastic wedding. the bride looked stunning!

  • Adam Cavanagh - December 7, 2009 - 8:15 pm

    Some really stunning work there. Well done.

Mike & Melissa | UC Botanical Gardens Wedding | Shoreline Center Wedding Reception in Oakland

Mike and Melissa, friends of mine from back in my Berkeley days, decided to tie the knot last weekend at the UC Berkeley Botanical Gardens. After seeing a wedding that I shot at Muir Woods, Melissa wanted to find a site that would also allow them to have the ceremony under a stand of tall and majestic trees. The Cal Botanic Gardens was the perfect wedding site for them, with a beautiful small amphitheater set in a stand of redwood trees, ferns, and winding green paths. It’s an absolute gem that I wish I had known about when I was a student.

The wedding reception took place at the Shoreline Center in Oakland. It has some really unique modern architecture, and was an intimate and beautiful setting to conclude their small summer wedding.

The amphitheater ceremony at the UC Berkeley Botanic Gardens redwood grove:

A few shots from the Shoreline Center reception:

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  • LibbyJames - September 10, 2009 - 6:28 pm

    amphitheater ceremony…AYKM? what an amazing scene for a wedding, so romantic!

Wendy & Grant | The Argonaut Hotel Wedding | San Francisco, CA

Wendy and Grant’s wedding took place at the Argonaut Hotel, just off the shores of the San Francisco Bay. Wendy and Grant are two of the sweetest and kindest people I’ve ever met- and can laugh together through just about everything. Their slightly nautical themed wedding brought in Hawaiian traditions, and some wonderful vows. Grant’s included a Top 10 list, while Wendy blessed the crowd with a stirring rendition of Nat King Cole’s “L-O-V-E” complete with signage and cheerleaders in the audience.

San Francisco wedding

Bride getting hairspray

Bridesmaids at Argonaut Hotel

Certainly the youngest girl to catch the bridal bouquet. She’ll definitely need Dad’s permission to get married for a while yet.

Flower girl catching bouquet

The photo booth at the wedding was a huge success. This is my favorite monkey face.

Wedding photo booth

We ended the evening with a nice stroll out on the town for a few night photos. I’m absolutely loving my Canon 5D Mk II and prime lenses. The world of low light night photography is so rich with possibilities.

Congratulations to Wendy and Grant!

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  • Megan - June 23, 2011 - 9:33 pm

    how do you get so much light at night without any noise?

Kim & Jon | The Bridges Golf Club Wedding | Marriott Hotel | San Ramon

Kim and Jon’s wedding took place at The Bridges Golf Club in San Ramon after getting ready at the San Ramon Marriott Hotel. The wedding was a multi-cultural affair to say the least- combining American, Israeli, Chinese, and Vietnamese traditions all into one packed day. Kim changed between three beautiful dresses over the course of the wedding reception- the usual white dress, a red Chinese one, and a pink Vietnamese dress rounded out the selection.

When I met up with the couple for their engagement shoot at the Monterey Bay Aquarium they were training for a triathlon together. That event successfully completed, they were both in tip-top wedding shape, ready to get down and have some fun. Thanks to Ian Balam (who came all the way from Mexico to help assist) and the talented Nancy Tsai for their help with this huge and very fun wedding.

Ian’s photo:

In wedding photography it can be the fashion to take long walks looking for amazing/unique locations. However, in my experience simple can often be the best. In the middle of the day, with harsh light all around, we found a beautiful nook on the balcony outside of Kim’s suite with soft light and a wonderfully clean background. It made a beautiful place for some simple, classic bridal portraits.

Simple bridal portrait with Kim

Kim and Jon set up a beautiful huppa for the ceremony, adorned by a spectacular array of orchids. Kim’s favorite flowers were on display all over The Bridges throughout the night.

Ian’s photo:

Crying at wedding ceremony

The Bridges Golf Club wedding ceremony kiss

Bridges Golf Club San Ramon exit from wedding ceremony

Rabbi and kids at wedding

Bay Area wedding at sunset

Bridal portrait at The Bridges Club in San Ramon

Wedding celebration with bridge and groom

Ian’s photo:

The father of the bride making his speech…

Nancy’s Photo:

Hora dance or "Chair" dance

Cutting the wedding cake

The Bridges San Ramon wedding

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Ben & Courtney | San Luis Obispo Wedding

Ben and Courtney’s wedding on Courtney’s family ranch in San Luis Obispo was a fabulous affair, with more personality and heart than I could have imagined possible. The wedding took place under a grape arbor in the middle of the family garden, with all the flowers in full bloom and the summer harvest about to come in.

Almost everything at the wedding was handmade. The wedding flowers were grown in the garden, and the wedding desserts were made by the Courtney, based on beloved family recipes such as “Fern’s berry cobbler” and “Grandma Betty’s snickerdoodle cookies”. Quaint decorations dotting the barn reception, where twinkling lights and the San Luis Obispo Jazz Band added the final bit of flair to the evening. This was a classic California ranch wedding that I wouldn’t have done any other way.

And of course we can’t forget about the dogs. Perhaps my favorite bridal portraits ever?

Sometimes couples provide their own inspiration. My simple “let’s take a quick break. No need to smile!” turned into this wonderful frame. American Gothic meets Bay Area young professionals on the family ranch. Hmmmm.

A few details

Food by Cattaneo Bros. Catering, with live music by the San Luis Obispo Jazz Band.

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  • LibbyJames - August 31, 2009 - 6:23 pm

    I adore this wedding…so darn cute. I love all the details and sunflowers

Will & Shirley | UC Berkeley Engagement Shoot

I’ve known Will and Shirley from back in our days at Berkeley. They are now on to medical school (and getting married!) while I of all people happen to be taking a lot of photos lately. We met this past weekend to take their engagement photos around the UC Berkeley campus. After driving over from the city, all three of us took a few moments to marvel at how quiet and peaceful the campus seemed after the fast-paced rush of city life. Getting over our nostalgia, we continued to stroll through campus for a set of photos- visiting Doe Library, campus lawns, and even the incredible building I found during a biostatistics class (which was finally open after hours)! Take a look below:

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  • LibbyJames - August 27, 2009 - 5:28 pm

    Love the last image, that sun flair is fab!

  • Mackenzie - February 26, 2014 - 6:21 pm

    Which building on campus are those photos from? They’re beautiful!

Jen & Josh | The Holly Farm Wedding | Carmel, CA

Jen and Josh were recently married on the Holly Farm in Carmel. It was a beautiful event full of beautiful and fun-loving people, a gorgeous location. And yes- the photos turned out ok too. See a few of my favorites below. Thanks so much to Nancy Tsai and Sierra Hawthorne for helping me with the photography for this wedding.

The bride’s brother put his skills from band camp to good use, with a very “Love Actually” sendoff after the ceremony. A rather unique compliment to the “All you need is love” being played by the string quartet in the background.

I rarely post details on my blog, but I always take them. It’s great for wedding albums and a way to record the feel of the wedding day. Here’s a try at a collage from various little bits I found around the Holly Farm throughout the day.

A toast from Mom.

And believe it or not, this is my past roommate. Party on Dr. Larry.

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  • Jennifer & Josh - August 23, 2009 - 6:26 am

    Noah, Sierra, and Nancy-

    Thank you so, so much for all of your hard work. The photos look amazing! You captured our wedding day so well. Thank you, thank you, thank you! Josh said he put the hat on the little rooster in your photo board, and so we are so glad your attention to detail caught that one. We love your style- we are so glad we picked you for our wedding.

    We thank you SO much for all of your work!!

    Jen & Josh

  • william and anne - August 23, 2009 - 3:30 pm

    Noah…

    we love your photos and the wonderful mood and lighting. These are great… love the high dynamic range of some of the shots..
    Topaz perhaps.

    Bill and Anne Grisaitis