As the year winds to a close, I’m delighted to get to write a post for Gabriel of Harber Photography of the San Francisco Bay Area, a sponsor of APW who’s work I’m a huge personal fan of (and have been for a decade). Since it’s year end, we decided to make this post a retrospective of some of Gabriel’s favorite images of the year, and I think you will agree that they are absolutely a delight.
Gabriel is one of those photographers with a personality (Thank God. We turned down a number of photographers back when we were interviewing for our wedding, because they seemed professional… but not really personable. And somehow that seemed wrong for making art together).
Gabriel has a handlebar mustache (sometimes) and a wicked sense of fun (all of the time), and a fabulous partner who works as his assistant (if you’re lucky). He’s the kind of person I party with in real life, so that should tell you something.
Gabriel’s wedding photography is just hands down stunning, but a few things always jump out at me from his portfolio. One, he captures that free-wheeling joy, that let-loose time-to-party energy of a wedding reception with this amazing clarity and energy. His party pictures are among the best I’ve ever seen (in fact, he placed in a WPJA/Brides Magazine international photography contest for his dancing pictures this year, and I’m not in the least bit surprised).
He also captures guy energy amazingly well. So many wedding professionals are women, which is great. You get a lot of femme-y energy when it comes to wedding photography, and I love that. But Gabriel captures that guys-guy energy in this beautiful and effortless way that you see much more rarely. And every time I see that in his pictures, I wonder, “D*mn, why don’t I see that more often?” It’s like you don’t even know that it’s missing until you see it… and then it all falls into place.
And finally, personally, I’ve always loved the way Gabriel’s work is able to capture the quiet reflective moments. It captures the moments of stillness, and you can see the real quality of a persons life and face.
Those small moments are the moments from your wedding that you hold in your heart, and what a huge gift to be able to have them captured on film forever.
Harber Photography is located in Oakland, CA, and Gabriel serves the greater Bay Area (and travel is affordable, so LA? Pacific North West? This might be your guy). He’s worked with lots of Team Practical couples, and I’ve never heard anything but absolute raves. You guys adore him, and that’s a big deal to me.
Oh. And. On a purely personal note, Gabriel and his partner had a baby this year (one we have yet to meet, which is killing me). When he was collecting some of his favorite shots of the year, he sent me this one, of his partner Lo, and their little son. And it slays me:
So go browse, enjoy, make music together.