Beck Diefenbach: San Francisco Wedding Photojournalist

It’s no secret that I love wedding photojournalism. The crispness, the point-of-view, and the visual storytelling of photojournalism just speak to me in a way that many other styles don’t. (To the extent that I hired a team of photojournalists to shoot my own wedding.) But the thing is, these days photojournalism is a word that gets thrown around like it’s going out of style (frequently used to stand in for a bunch of other words that mostly mean documentary) and it’s such a rare thing to find a wedding photographer who is an honest-to-goodness photojournalist. Which is why I’m so pleased that APW gets to play host to the incredibly talented Beck Diefenbach in San Francisco. Because you guys, he is the real deal. And today Beck is offering an APW-only engagement special that is so good even I want to take him up on it (keep reading to find out more!)

So first off, let’s talk about Beck’s style. It’s obvious that Beck has serious photography chops (the guy moonlights for The San Francisco Chronicle and the Associated Press). But it’s his approach that I love. He told me:

What makes me different than almost all wedding photographers is my alternate profession as a daily freelance photojournalist.  Working under pressure is a daily activity for me. This past year I photographed everything from Major League Baseball’s World Series here in San Francisco to Occupy Protests in Oakland.

So I can come to weddings knowing that I can take any change, any swing in the schedule and keep chugging along. I let every couple I work with know they will never hear a single complaint from me. I roll with every punch and make sure that even if the day doesn’t run smoothly, I am there doing the best job I can. Because in the news world, there is no reshoot.

So for all that I talk about the visual qualities of photojournalism and how much I love the work produced by wedding photojournalists, in reality that right up there is the reason you hire someone who makes a living shooting real-time news and events. Because it means that Beck Diefenbach is the kind of person who is going to get the shot. Period.

But the thing I find most interesting about Beck Diefenbach is that even though he takes a candid documentary approach to photography, his work still has such a clear point of view. Which means he’s not just reporting your wedding, he’s still telling a story about it. Just, you know, an honest story without a ton of unnecessary editorial styling, poses, or Photoshop filters. Or as Beck puts it, “In this day of over-hype and over-Photoshop, I want to provide couples with the same honest, meaningful photography they deserve.”

Now here’s the crazy part. Beck Diefenbach is offering APW readers what might possibly be the most awesome engagement session special of all time, and it’s so good I’m a little afraid he’s going to end up spending all his free time this year shooting APW engagement sessions and doing nothing else. Because for just $150 you can get an engagement session with Beck that includes:

  • One 2 hour portrait session
  • One 8×10 print
  • High-resolution images for unlimited personal use
  • Web gallery of edited images

Yup, you read it right. Beck Diefenbach is offering an APW-only engagement session for $150 (!) that includes a free print and an online gallery and your high-resolution images. I mean, who does that? Or if you’re not in the market for an engagement session, Beck’s local wedding coverage begins at $2400 (or you can hire him at an hourly rate of $450 per hour). Plus, since he’s hoping to travel even more in the future (I’m pretty sure he wrote half of our e-mails from Singapore), Beck is also offering a flat all-inclusive $5,000 rate to the rest of the US and Canada, and a $6,000 rate to the rest of the world. I mean, I’m sold.

And as if his talent and that ridiculously discounted engagement session weren’t enough, the icing on the cake is that Beck is truly just a really interesting guy. In addition to his freelance photojournalism work, Beck also spends his free time working with a local Boy Scout troop, an effort that he’s documented over here (warning, these photos will melt your heart). Which means at the end of the day, Beck Diefenbach is a really good guy, who can keep his cool under pressure, and who just wants to document your wedding from an honest place. And isn’t that what everyone wants out of their wedding photographer?

So Bay Area folks, if you appreciate good wedding photojournalism, I can’t think of anyone who exemplifies the category better than Beck Diefenbach. So go, check out his portfolio, and then call him up immediately and take advantage of that $150 engagement photo deal. Otherwise I might beat you to it.

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  • Great pictures. The hands of second picture is so unique and characteristic.

  • Terrific article and some amazing photographs. Waiting for more.