Viki & Sam by Emily Albert

Viki and I go way back. She was my adopted big sister when I first moved to San Francisco, guiding me through the twists and turns of finding an apartment, online dating fiascos, and working my first big girl job. Her advice was always considered and sound and I felt comforted knowing somebody had my back in the new city. 

So of course I jumped at the chance to shoot her and Sam as we explored their home neighborhood of Russian Hill. We meandered down Polk Street, got a chance to catch up, and even let a stranger's cute puppy photo bomb a few shots,. 

Emily & Marty by Emily Albert

There's something about sunshine after weeks of rain that just feels like magic.

It was on the first day of good weather, after weeks of endless downpour, that I ventured out of our 650 square foot apartment and up to Farley's, my favorite neighborhood coffee spot, to work on the beginnings of a photography portfolio. A desire to soak up as much sunlight as possible led me to pull up a chair outside—right next to a cute couple sharing a pastry. 

The novelty of sunshine on my face caused me to leave my laptop closed as I sipped my coffee and instead turned my attention to studying the pair across from me. His face looked oddly familiar and I lost myself rummaging through memories, trying to place him. Their eyes turned to me just as his name fell on my tongue. “Marty?”

Turns out Marty and I had attended the same church small group several years back and the girl, Emily, was his fiancé. Without thinking twice, I asked if they’d done an engagement shoot yet. Now I’m not sure quite what gave me the courage/audacity to inquire—blame it on the bold light of the day—but they didn’t run in the opposite direction. In fact, after chatting for another half hour, we had a time scheduled for the next afternoon.  

On the day of the shoot, the sun continued to shine with tenacity and, instead of fighting it, I chose to let those bursts and rays into the images. As a prime actor in the story that brought the three of us together, it felt only right to give it a leading role.

Hopefully what resulted retains just a bit of that magic.