Illuminating remarkable stories with photography
that feels beautiful, sincere and intuitive

Backyard Covelo, California Wedding ~ Sarah & Michael

Sarah & Michael married on a June day in rural Covelo, CA. The couple chose to get married at Sarah’s family home, where they first met, and Sarah gave birth to their daughter, Maddie.  I’ve known Michael since high school, and I can remember the day he told me about this amazing woman, Sarah, that he had just met in Covelo. I had never heard him talk about someone like that before, and it was clear that she was a game changer – all these years later it was so beautiful to watch them get married. 

You may have seen this published on Off Beat Bride.

The ceremony was a particularly special. It began with the groomsmen and bridesmaids having a dance-off down the isle, and, as Sarah began to walk down the isle, one of Michael’s friends surprised him by taking the mic and singing “Kiss the Girl,” which then lead to the entire audience singing along.

“Linking arms with my dad, I was already crying, but in that moment everything felt so real. The next moment was even more emotional, walking down the aisle and seeing everyone under the trees. I couldn’t believe that everyone came to celebrate with us! Standing under the Madrone tree gazing into Michael’s eyes as Captain Mike spoke, I felt so loved and so full of love.” – Sarah

They decided to honor their daughter in the vows, asking her to join them at the altar, as they read a promise to always put family first. “We are on the same team as a couple and as a family. We wanted our vows to be ‘us.’ So we kept them real and meaningful, but fun and original.” – Sarah


It was around 100°F, so by the time we finished up with their portraits in the fields, everyone was starting to feel the heat. A friend was able to drive over to us, and Sarah & Michael had an unplanned quad ride!

“Mari came to pick us up after photos, and Michael wanted to drive us back. I might be a mountain girl, but I’m not too quad savvy. It was pretty awesome to hold onto my husband and ride through the trees in my wedding dress though!”

Festivities went late into the night, fueled by the music of Funk/Pop band, Ripe, who flew out for the event. Having a great band was really important to the couple, which is not surprising as Michael is the lead singer of The Gang of Thieves. The whole event was pretty magical – the property is integrated with the surrounding forest, and far enough away from town that almost everyone (including myself) camped on the property.

The morning after the wedding I got up around 5am to start the drive to the San Fransisco airport and had one of those perfect early morning moments. My carpool buddy had left a Tina Turner CD in the player, and I turned it up while I drove down the windy mountain road and watched as the sun hit the valley below, illuminating blue fog and golden grasslands. I love quiet moments like these after the energy of a wedding day, and inevitably find myself so grateful to work as a photographer.

comments +

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *