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Wedding in Santa Clara University Mission, Hotel Valencia and Maggiano’s in Santana Row

August 31st, 2008

Kirsten & Marcos' Wedding Album 

View Kirsten & Marcos’ Wedding Album

  • Mission Church Santa Clara de Asis
  • Maggiano’s Little Italy, Santana Row
  • Hotel Valencia, Santana Row

    August 16, 2008


    Before I tuned my life into wedding photography, commercial photography, food photography, and fashion photography, I was a computer geek…

    Hotel Valencia, Santana Row

    There could be double entendre in this title, having grown up in an area that was a colony of the United Kingdom (Malaysia), but the job I’m going to feature in this blog has a twist that takes me back to the time when I was a computer guy with Sun Microsystems.

    Kirsten (the bride) and Barbara (bride’s mom), a Sun Microsystems employee—whose husband, like me, successfully switched careers to become a lawyer—discovered me after I left the company. Kirsten found me via Maggiano’s Little Italy’s amazing Banquet Sales Manager (Thanks, Vicky!). I have photographed Maggiano’s entire staff outside the restaurant, a hefty few hundred employees; and one of my most memorable weddings in Maggiano’s was with Stacy and Harold.

    In my new career as a photographer (with no dreams of going back to computers), I had the chance to get to know Barbara and her family. Happily, Kirsten met, and is now married to, Marcos. I worked on both the engagement and wedding photographs, giving me lots of time with the couple. I have the positive impression that Marcos has sparked a new sense of adventure in Kirsten. I think they’ll be very, very happy.

    And in the sense of adventure, we tried for adventurous locations for the engagement shots. For San Francisco cognoscenti, see if you can recognize some of these locations in this clip! A couple of hints: Pulgas Water Temple in Woodside; and the Sutro Baths and Stockton Street Tunnel in San Francisco.

    She's only happy in the sun...

    Fortunately for us, the famed “pulgas” (fleas), after which the Water Temple was named, didn’t try to get into the pictures. No itching on the way home!

    At the old Sutro Baths ruins, we found a cave that presented a wonderful backdrop. One of these pictures was blown up, made into a framed photograph, and all the guests at the wedding later on got to sign it, making an interesting alternative to the traditional wedding guest book.

    Of course, engagement photos can only mean a wedding coming up. Kirsten and Marcos’ day was a treasure trove of photo opportunities. Someone in the family must have a connection to Santa Clara University, because they were able to book their wedding at the historic Mission Santa Clara de Asis. I understand use of this church, the eighth oldest of the original 21 California missions, is restricted, and it can take more than a year to secure a date!

    Kirsten, Marcos and the wedding party in Mission Santa Clara

    From the photographer’s view, the Mission was wonderful. The inside is fantastically colorful. Outside, with its old, adobe wall, gated walkways, and ancient garden plantings, we got some great pictures.

    After the ceremony, it was off to Santana Row in San José for the partying. Carrying on the adventurous theme, Kirsten and Marcos have a shared/learned passion for travel. Their reception tables, rather than being numbered, were named for locations they visited together already or plan to visit in the future. You can see from these photographs that there were two different venues: Hotel Valencia Santana Row, and Maggiano’s Little Italy, directly across the street from the hotel. The food was great, the reception was great, and—if I do say so myself—we got some great pictures, too. I hope all their future journeys are successful and happy!

    –Michael Soo

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