Willow Heights Mansion Wedding
You’ve heard that most of the wedding photographers started out when they were asked to photograph one of their friends’ weddings. Surprisingly, that was not the case for me. As a matter of fact, I had not shot any of my friends’ weddings until 2015. Yuki and Phil are both good friends of mine. We were all in the same social circle. However, they did not lay eyes on each other until junior year. Even though they met in Seattle, they have been living in the Bay Area since they graduated from college. With friends and family from all over the world, they decided to have the wedding at Willow Heights Mansion, which is about an hour away from San Francisco.
It was a gorgeous day in Morgan Hill. The whole mansion overlooks a breathtaking panoramic view of the valley. The inside of the building embodies white marble countertops and crystal chandeliers throughout the whole interior. With a mix of Old Hollywood and modern decor, it provides a splendid and elegant atmosphere.
But what topped the highlight of the wedding was not the dazzling decor, it’s the tears that flooded everybody throughout the whole day. Coming from Japan and being the only child of the family, Yuki’s decision to settle in the states has been difficult not only for her but also her parents. To be able to let go of their daughter in a foreign country, Yuki’s parents have put a lot of trust in Phil too (heck he’s also lived in Taiwan most of his life). Especially for Yuki’s mom, there was not a single moment that I did not see her cry during the ceremony, family portraits, and the reception. The timeline we scheduled in advance was only planned for two toasts from the best man and maid of honor. But a lot more members of the wedding party stepped forward to give a heart-warming speech. Last but not least, when we showed the video Ilesha, the maid of honor, made for Yuki that flashes back to her transition from adolescence to adulthood, nobody, especially Yuki’s parents, could hold back the tears.
They say college is the place where you meet your friends for life. It’s also the place where you meet your future spouse. It really can’t be more true for Yuki and Phil, as I had been there to witness their journey since day one.
I remember Yuki has always joked about being a house wife as one of her life goals. And ever since I started my photography career, Yuki and I have constantly joked about shooting her wedding one day to help achieve her dream. At the time she has already been dating Phil for about 3 yeas in, so when we tossed around the getting-married joke, it has always been her and Phil in the picture. And here we are 5 years later. I actually had the honor to document one of my best friends’ wedding. It’s so crazy to realize how time has flown, and how far we have gone. I’d definitely consider this a milestone for both of us. Congratulations Yuki and Phil!
Photographer: Roddy Chung Photography
Make up Artist: Christine Kay
Venue: Willow Heights Mansion