Emily + Shannon ~ Vine Hill House, Sebastapol

Emily and Shannon were married atop a gently sloping hill at Vine Hill House, overlooking acres of O’Connell vineyards.

There was just something special about this wedding that it was hard to put your finger on. Was it the buzz of eager anticipation in the air? Was it the warm, genuine hugs from the family and friends that flooded in with broad smiles on their faces? The constant soundtrack of laughter that enveloped you everywhere you went? Or was it just Emily and Shannon, who seem to have touched so many people with their generosity of spirit and sweet love story?

Maybe it was all of those things combined that left me and my assistants, Ashlynn and Michelle, with a warm glow as we sped home from Sebastapol and back to the foothills in time for mother’s day, exclaiming “That was so much fun!

When two people so clearly in love come together to celebrate their commitment to one another, with the resounding and enthusiastic support of their friends and family, it makes for a magical and emotional day. As a photographer who is just as inspired by capturing the connections between people as by the art of light and composition, Emily and Shannon’s wedding was like a candy-shop of sweet opportunities to do what I love most – and best.

This was the first time I have shot a wedding at the Vine Hill House and I want to say – wow! What a location. I loved the gorgeous ceremony site with a canopy of trees and a view to the valley below, and the opportunity to capture quiet moments in the vineyards with my two brides. Best of all, however, was the attention to detail by Dan and Jill O’Connell themselves, who personally made it their sole mission to ensure that everything was executed perfectly for Emily and Shannon – right down to holding the ceremony up a few extra moments to ensure that the light would be perfect for photos. I love a venue owner who pays attention to the light and timing of it throughout their location. Thanks to Dan for providing me with some spot-on tips that made for a much smoother day for everyone.

Second Shooter: Michelle McDaid

Assistant: Ashlynn Gist

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