Megan and Jason (engagement session)

Megan and Jason are getting married in the fall, and I’m pleased that they’ve selected me as their wedding photographer! I’ve worked with Megan before, shooting some business-related photography for her. So it was a pleasure to be working with her again, and to meet her fiance as well.

We discussed several different locations for their engagement photo session, and ultimately they decided they wanted a place relatively local. I suggested Cheeseboro Canyon* in Agoura Hills, California. I had scouted this park for a fashion shoot ages ago, but ultimately didn’t get to shoot there. So the location had been in my back pocket, so to speak. This seemed like the perfect time to share this great location and make some wonderful images together.

The park is really big, and I haven’t even begun to explore all of it. In fact, it’s very popular with mountain bikers and equestrians (can those two groups get along peacefully?), and that’s probably the best way to explore it. I’ve only been on foot, but the first time there, I managed to stumble upon an abandoned farmhouse. Score! So that’s where we headed.

I really enjoyed working with Megan and Jason, and it felt like going for a stroll with friends. They both have a goofy sense of humor, which is something I personally can relate to! I encourage all my wedding clients to do an engagement session with me first. It’s a great way to get to know each other, so when the Big Day arrives, there’s a familiarity already built in. This is why I incorporate engagement sessions into my wedding packages.

I’m really looking forward to Megan and Jason’s wedding in the fall. Thanks for hanging out with me!

Technical details at the end.

* And for those of you local to the area who are saying, “hey wait a minute, isn’t it spelled ‘Chesebro’?” No, it’s not. The freeway exit is Chesebro Road, but the canyon is spelled “Cheeseboro”. I have no idea why there’s a discrepancy.

Camera/tech/nerdy notes: Almost all the images were shot on a Mamiya 645AF, using primarily my 80mm f/2.8 lens, and occasionally my 150mm lens. Film was Kodak Portra 160 and 400 for color, shot at box speed. And the black and white was Kodak Tmax 400, also shot at box speed. The exceptions were:

– The three black and white images of the blurry farm house, the dandelion close up, and the silhouetted tree. They were shot using an old Busch Pressman Model C press camera, which is a cranky, difficult thing to use. But that’s a story for a different day. The film was Ilford Pan F+.

– The last three images (color), which were shot on my Koni Omega Rapid, with a 90mm f/3.5 lens. This camera is a 6×7 rangefinder, and makes massively huge negatives. It’s probably the ugliest camera I’ve ever owned (which is saying something). But it makes gorgeous images. Film was a roll of 220, but I can’t recall if it was the new Kodak Portra 160, or 400. My negatives are still at the lab so I can’t check.


9 thoughts on “Megan and Jason (engagement session)

  1. Way to go with the alternative cameras! That’s what so great about shooting film–endless combinations with films/formats/emulsions/lenses/cameras. Thanks for sharing these. My favorite is the very first one.

  2. I can actually feel the love between these two. I never knew that even a simple camera can capture feelings 🙂 Great shot – hands down!

  3. Thanks! Although I would have been amazed if they *hadn’t* been made with a film camera. 😉

  4. These are amazing engagement shots, so relaxed and natural. Such a wide variety of looks as well.

    Do you plan the shoot and take the appropriate film stock or do you plan the film stock and the appropriate shots?

    Thanks heaps!

  5. Thanks! I plan the shoot and then bring the right film. The shoot itself is the most important thing to my client, and I would never tell someone “sorry, we can’t shoot there because it’s too dark and I only want to shoot low-ISO film.” The choice for me in shooting is mostly between 160 and 400 ISO color film anyway. Those film choices will get you everywhere outdoors. If I’m shooting indoors, I might use 800 film but rarely. More likely I would shoot with Portra 400 and then augment with some strobes. Which is what I did when I shot digital as well.

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