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Baby Madden on the Way! ~ San Francisco, Ca Maternity Photographer ~

What a treat to be able to shoot Shannon and Jon’s wedding and then be able to follow their journey as they start a family!  They were married 2 years ago and now welcoming a baby girl this July!  I am so excited to meet her as I get to do her very first modeling gig ;).  Shannon looked absolutely amazing as she rocked her 6 month bump! I am so excited to share this Bernal Heights maternity session with You!

Christina & Steven ~ Engaged!! San Francisco, Ca

Magic was in the air last weekend.  I don’t know how else to explain it other than San Francisco was about 80 degrees with no wind or fog and the couple I got to photograph was so incredibly fun!  I have been dying to do an Embarcadero Engagement Shoot for about 4 years now (since the beginning of HSP), so when they wanted to do a ball park session, I was THRILLED!  I just loved their Giants jerseys and stoked we got this session in right before the season opener.  GO GIANTS!  Christina and Steven were so easy to photograph because they didn’t take themselves too seriously and just had fun together!  This couple showed me once again how lucky I am to do this for a living…FULL TIME now!  Yippeee!  I  have never felt healthier both physically and emotionally!  I think the only thing that could take my happy meter over the charts is to get a rescue dog!  For now, I am all smiles as I share this E-Sesh with you!

Christina&Steven_eng_0018


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Exquisite Weddings Magazine Features Jaimee & Matt’s Organically Beautiful Wedding ~ Petaluma, Ca

This wedding was full of inspiration!  From all the handmade details to the gorgeously decorated barn…this wedding had it all!  I am so excited that it is currently being featured on The Exquisite Weddings Magazine!  Check out the full article HERE.  To see their Blog for lots of fun ideas head HERE.

Ben’s Bar Mitzvah! ~ Palo Alto, Ca Bar Mitzvah Photographer

Ben’s big day has been a much anticipated event for me.  His Bar Mitzvah has been on my calendar for two years after photographing his sister’s in 2012 and I absolutely couldn’t wait for the reunion!  His family is so incredible!  It was so fun seeing how much he and his sister have both grown and matured since our last get together.  One thing hadn’t changed and that was their sweet, fun personalities.  His Bar Mitzvah was absolutely rockstar status!  Glow Event Design did an amazing job transforming the space into Ben’s Nightclub complete with a red carpet entry, dance stage, and leather couches to lounge in.  I thought to myself, ‘this is my chance to be the paparazzi!’  So I had all the kids “work it” upon entering the nightclub.  I have never seen so many awesome dance moves in one place and especially loved the spray painting station where all the kids got personalized hats.  It was a night to remember and I couldn’t be more proud of Ben’s accomplishments!

Welcome to the Club!

Complete with cherry faux-tinis!

Selfies!
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A Thank You Letter:

To all of you who see your beautiful faces below, to those who referred me to one of your friends, & to my unconditionally loving & supportive husband…THANK YOU!

Today I reached THE goal.

In June of 2010, shortly after marrying Matt, I decided all too confidently that I was going to be a professional photographer.  This idea came to me out of the blue…but looking back on it now, I know that it came from God.  He had a Plan for me and all of You were a part of it.  The timing in my life to take up a new hobby could not have been more perfect.  I was slowly becoming depressed in early 2010 because I was no longer able to work out, play volleyball, and heaven forbid, wear heels.  Daily outdoor activities has been my fuel since the day I could walk, so when my knee was not healing properly after surgery number 3, I began to panic.  The pain consumed my every thought and the fear of a fourth surgery was ever present.  On top of that, our wedding photographer dropped off the face of the Earth and did not edit our photos or make our album.  I couldn’t see The Plan through all my tears at that point, but now I am so thankful that our photographer fell through on her contract because it was the very first stepping stone to where I am today.  I found great joy in making our wedding album and editing our images.  Family saw this joy and urged me to pursue photography.

Photography made sense.  After all, I was a neurotic hoarder of anything and everything sentimental.  I have a box from 8th grade onwards filled with everything from Blink 182 concert tickets to candy dropped by a guy I was crushing on…I am a little scared to go back and open those boxes in fear of not knowing what will pop out at me.  It sounds crazy, but these items were saved so that someday I could use them to bring back a forgotten memory.  I had a genuine fear of forgetting.  When collecting odd items from events became inconvenient, I turned to photos to be that tool to bring back the memory.  ’Shout out to the parental unit for all the albums in your attic!’

Becoming a photographer is all I could think about in June of 2010.  I have very little patience when it comes to reaching a goal.  I wanted photography experience, and I wanted it right then and there.  I put an ad on Craigslist as a “Free Photographer” after having my camera a month.  It was a shot in the dark, but 2 brides responded…then mom’s looking to have their kids photographed reached out, and before I knew it I had 2 weddings and some family shoots under my belt.  It was so much fun!  I spent countless hours at my computer reading every thing I could about my camera, shooting techniques, and tutorials.  I was officially obsessed…and in the meantime, a miracle happened, my knee pain had completely gone away after a year of nonstop agony.  I cancelled my surgery plans and booked more sessions.   Before I knew it I was juggling 2 full time jobs leaving very little time for friends, family, and Matt.   That needed to stop and it needed to stop ASAP.  It became my mission to do photography full time from that point on so that I could do what I love and be the best wife I could be.

It is Matt who cheered for me everyday as he saw how happy photography was making me and wiped my tears away when I spent every other night frustrated at not knowing how to create a blog, operate Lightroom, or figure out how to make more space on my sloooooow running computer.  There was never enough time!  Time for him, time for me, time for friends and family…BUT I knew I had to keep pursuing my goal cuz I loved everything about shooting people (with my camera).

Soooooo, It is with great disbelief and joy that today, March 24th 2014, after 4 years of building this little business, is a day to CELEBRATE!  It is my last day here at Gymboree after almost 8 years of designing for the Boy department and my first day as a Full Time, Full Blown, Wedding & Family Photographer!!  I am sad to be leaving behind the Gymboree family, but am beyond excited to have time to put more love into growing as a photographer.

Thank You.  You all got me to this point.  4 years, 75 couples and families, and the 787 facebook followers You brought my way!  Your support, advice, motivation, and moments of love You have shared with me do not go unnoticed…Pop open some bubbly with me as I toast to You!  We did it!

  • Giovanna Hall - March 24, 2014 - 11:44 pm

    Heather,
    When I met you, you were just starting out! And my husband and I were just starting out as parents to twins. You photographed Gianna and Lucca at 4 and 15 months old and I look at those photos everyday as I walk down our hallway. Thank you for those beautiful photos and beautiful memories of the twins at that age! You are wonderful and so very talented! Best of luck to you and we hope to have our photos taken again by you soon! Best wishes, GiovannaReplyCancel

  • Shannon Madden - March 25, 2014 - 12:42 am

    Congratulations, Heather! Jon and I couldn’t be happier for you – and selfishly excited for ourselves! First our engagment pics, then wedding photos, and now moving on to family sessions…you are capturing the most important moments in our lives and we can’t thank you enough! : )

    Cheers!
    Shannon & JonReplyCancel

  • Gina Jackman - March 25, 2014 - 1:01 am

    How exciting! Huge congrats to you!! I love that you fully tackled your dream and will be reaching out to you again in the near future for you to capture with your camera one of my dreams come true (mini-me on board). In the meantime, I’ll continue to sing your praises and send referrals your way :) Cheers!ReplyCancel