Beck Diefenbach: Wedding Photojournalist in San Francisco

You hear the words “Wedding Photojournalist” thrown around these days like it’s going out of style. You hear it so much that it’s starts to mean not very much at all. So today I’m beyond pleased to introduce you to the real thing: Beck Diefenbach, San Francisco based award-winning photojournalist, who shoots weddings affordably. Every so often a photographer comes along that makes you sit up and take notice, because the work they are producing is so stunning, and so different from everyone else’s work. Beck Diefenbach is one of those photographers. San Francisco, it’s your lucky day.

First, let’s dig into Beck’s impressive background (because goodness knows I love me photographers with some serious street cred to back up there work). Beck went to college and got licensed to be a commercial pilot (I know). But, since college sometimes leads you to interests you never even saw coming, he ended up pursuing photojournalism. It started with an award winning stint working at University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign’s independent student newspaper, The Daily Illini, as photo editor and multimedia producer. He went on to work at several papers, most recently worked as a staff photographer for the Daily Chronicle in DeKalb, IL (award winning, again). Currently, Beck works as a regular contributor to The San Francisco Chronicle, Thomson Reuters News Pictures and the Associated Press (you can see some of his work on his blog). That, and he’ll shoot your wedding, which is such a surprising stroke of luck, I’m not even sure what to do with it.

One look at his work, and you’ll sit back in your seat, stunned that you’ve never seen anything quite like it, surprised by how crisp and clear and emotionally surprising his work is. Beck Diefenbach carries over the photojournalists eye to his wedding work: catching the moment as it unfolds, without pretension, with the desire to fully capture the truth, not gussy the truth up in tulle and tricks.

But he also has a wedding photographer’s eye: catching the emotional moments, the ones that will matter for generations, but with absolute emotional clarity. This is the hardest thing to do, and the fact that you can book Beck for your wedding starting at just $1900, totally blows me away.

I asked Beck about his artistic philosophy, and what he told me completely lines up with his work. He said, “Every good story deserves to be told, and it is my mission to retell that story in compelling images people can enjoy for the rest of their lives. With a true documentary approach, I believe in a non-intrusive method of reportage. Candid, personal exchanges are the best way to tell the story. From setting up and preparing for the day to the last dance that night, I want to capture those moments.”

And he’s excited to work with you, as well. In fact, Beck and I have been talking back and forth for nine months, and we finally were able to make all this happen. His girlfriend (of course) is an avid APW reader. He boils down the APW mission and how it aligns with his like this, “With the help of APW, couples are looking for a practical way to host a meaningful celebration. In this day of over-hype and over-photoshop, I want to provide couples with the same honest, meaningful photography they deserve.” And to put his money where his mouth is, he’s offering y’all $100 off an engagement portrait session. He says, “Normally $250, APW readers can receive a 1-2 hour engagement portrait session in the San Francisco Bay Area for $150. Package includes an online gallery of images and a complimentary 8×10 print of an image of their choosing.” So get on that already!

But it’s what he said about his favorite work that stole my heart. Beck told me, “Despite my work as a freelance photojournalist documenting international news and sports, my favorite subject to photograph is my Boy Scout troop. For a year and a half, I have volunteered as an assistant scoutmaster for Troop 14 here in San Francisco. When this post goes live on Tuesday, I will be three days into a week-long camping trip with my scouts at Camp Royaneh in Northern California. You can see my portfolio of images from my time with the troop on my editorial site.” (Hot tip: CLICK THAT LINK. It will restore your faith in humanity.)

So, San Francisco Bay Area. I cannot wait to see what you and Beck Diefenbach make together. It is guaranteed to be epically, epically magic.

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  • Gorgeous work…

  • Michaela

    He’s shooting our wedding in August! And yep, I found him through the vendor directory. Really looking forward to it. :)