Real Couples // Sacred Redwoods Ceremony: Carri + Roz

Our wedding day could not have been more magical! We were intentional about the aspects that felt important to each of us and did not stress about those parts that didn’t hold a lot of value for us. First, it was crucial that we be outside in nature, preferably in the redwoods. We also wanted a location that had space for folks to spend the night. We found a beautiful venue at Pema Osel Ling that had our ceremony in a sacred circle of redwoods, our reception outside with a bonfire, and plenty of cabins and camping spots for people to stay for a couple of days. We wanted the party to be super fun so we decided to spend more money on music and hired a live band.  To top it off we had a photo booth VW bus surprise for our guests.

Given that our wedding was inherently not traditional in the bride and groom department, we wanted to think outside the box in general and incorporate aspects that really represented each of us, our ancestors, and values. Carri has Jewish heritage on one side of her family, and so we chose to incorporate the breaking the glass tradition at the end of our ceremony. Roz’s family is African American, so we also incorporated the jumping the broom tradition. We wanted to acknowledge our family who had passed and couldn’t be there, as well as those throughout history who fought to make interracial and gay marriage possible.

We made a point to find vendors who were local to the area, as well as intentionally sought out vendors of color and/or from the LGBTQ community. Although we weren’t successful in doing this for every single vendor, we found vendors who respected us and our values.

What really made our wedding was our guests. Their love and true acceptance for us provided a beautiful container for our celebration and commitment. You could tell by the moves on the dance floor and the tears and the laughs that everyone was enjoying the love and acceptance we felt that night.

Photos by C Wagner Photography

HI! I'm Cherlyn. So nice to meet you! I am a full-time documentary, wedding, and birth photographer based in the San Francisco Bay area. But I am by no means tethered to the Bay area and love to photograph weddings worldwide.

I was born in the Philippines and came to the U.S. when I was 4.5 years old. Halves are really important. I grew up all over the Los Angeles area, went to college in Santa Cruz and lived in San Francisco for a decade before calling Oakland home. We do travel to Los Angeles a lot. Like, a lot a lot. Yes, I was raised in the valley. I love coffee, a diet coke once in awhile and a good Bloody Mary (strong & a tad spicy) enjoyed in a sunny, breezy outdoor patio. I have an affinity for tattoos because just like photographs, they tell a story (and yes, I do have quite a few). I love sushi and tacos trucks. And most importantly--I never take myself too seriously and happen to tell terrible corny jokes (I get that from my mom--whom I miss so much).

I am a candid, photo-journalistic photographer and like to capture moments big and small. I like to think that I see things differently and find magic in what others may think ordinary. You know, like think-outside-the-box stuff.

So, if you like the quirky things in life and are always up for an adventure, then I think we'd hit it off! I also prefer hugs over handshakes and give a good high five.