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Sarah K Chen Photography Blog bio picture

Welcome to my Blog!

I'm a simple person who loves photographing people and spending time with my husband and two little girls, Ellie (4) and Emmeline (1). My girls are my world and every day I wonder how I became so blessed to be their Mama.

When I'm not behind the camera I love to knit and sew cute things for my girls and bake cookies. My husband likes to say I'm a granny at heart, but I like to say I'm a woman of many talents. ;)

I also enjoy snowboarding, traveling and immersing myself in books. One day I will conquer Cornice and get down without snowplowing my way. I dream of traveling to Greece, Italy and Paris one day, but I have yet to convince the husband that traveling abroad with two little ones would be aweome. I'd also love to go camping and show my girls the joys of a perfectly toasted marshmallow and walking barefoot through an icy cold creek bed. And although I said it would never happen, I now read most of my books on my iPhone or iPad instead of a book. Have kids and you'll soon realize the gift of a built in light and always having your book with you.

I'm based in Orange County, California and ocassionally travel for shoots.

Email Issues

It’s come to my attention that people have been having problems trying to email me! Please contact me at skc.fineart@gmail.com for the time being until I am back in the office to resolve the issue. Thank you for your patience and understanding. Also, why does this stuff always happen when you’re on vacation?

teton

Out of Office until August 30th

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We’re being crazy brave and taking our girls (2 & 5 years) on a little road trip this week. We’ll be heading to the Bay Area for a few days and then driving to Wyoming to tent camp 8-9 days in Grand Teton and Yellowstone National Park along with my parents. Have I mentioned that we’ve only been camping once before? It was one night. In Riverside. And we were so tired the next day.

But if you know me, I’m always up for an adventure! I’m very much like my Dad in that sense. I’m exciting to be taking my girls on an outdoor adventure where I hope they will learn to love and appreciate nature, find amazement in the wild animals they see, and see the world as wondrous to discover and experience. And I hope we survive the 45 hours round trip in the car with a 2 year old and 5 year old.

Do you want to know how I’m very different I am from my Dad? I’ve been meticulously trying to plan this trip, researching places to stay along the way to Wyoming, weather at elevation, the best family friendly hikes, which campgrounds and sites are best, what food to make, and he’s very… “Let’s leave Saturday morning.” As in that’s his entire plan. We wing the rest of it.  Can’t find a place to stay after the first day of driving 8-10 hours? Sleep in the car! No campgrounds available in Grand Teton when we arrive since it’s first come first serve only? There’s back country! Food? Ramen and protein bars. :)

All this to say that I’ll be out of the office starting today until Aug 30th.  Wish us luck!

August 11, 2014 - 2:34 pm Lovella Bridal - Wyoming is so amazing! Do enjoy. :)

Beach Day

I first met the Hoang family when they booked me for their son’s first birthday and then later for a family portrait session. We live close by so we carpooled to the family session location and on the drive down fell into easy conversation. I know how stressful the day of a shoot can be, but Jean and Robert were incredibly loving, kind and patient with each other and their children the entire time. I really admired that about them and their family.  Jean and I became fast friends through emails…talking about our children, current sewing projects, and future play dates. I don’t think we ever had that play date, but we ran into each other at dinner one night and our husbands and kids totally hit it off. We left the restaurant with Jeff asking to hang out with their family again soon. Fast forward to this summer and our girls are now taking gymnastics together. Each week after class we all do dinner, dessert and then let the kids play until night fall. It’s been the perfect summer and I am so glad to have befriended this family. I love watching our kids grow and play together and having adult conversations while the kids entertain themselves has been priceless.

These images are from our first trip to the beach. It didn’t go exactly as planned though…The kids were afraid of the ocean and complained about the sand stuck to their skin and inside their suits until we changed them into their regular clothes, but it was a good warm up and they were all more adventurous on our subsequent trip.

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August 8, 2014 - 1:00 pm Mariana Maya - Love these! Awesome story about a friendship! I too have made some awesome friends through photography!! Question: how do you manage to always get perfectly lit images without harsh shadows in what looks like full sun?

Montira and Chat’s Maternity Session at LA Arboretum

I am loving that so many of my past couples are expecting this year! I’ve had the pleasure of photographing Montira and Chat’s engagement session and pre-wedding portraits in 2011 and this year I had the honor of photographing them as they await their precious baby boy. These two are going to make such amazing parents to one ridiculously cute little boy. Montira looks so beautiful pregnant and I loved seeing Chat dote on his wife through the entirety of our shoot. He’s going to make an awesome Daddy and excellent role model for his boy. Thank you both for entrusting me to capture such important moments in your lives over the years. It’s been such a beautiful journey to be on with you two.

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Danielle & Eric’s Maternity Session

I still remember Danielle and Eric’s enthusiasm when we first met years ago. They were newly engaged and in search of a photographer for their wedding. Since that time I’ve photographed their engagement, Danielle’s boudoir, their wedding, and now their maternity session as they await the arrival of their baby girl. I love that I know these two so well and have been witness to so many important times in their lives. They’re a dream to photograph, always have me laughing through sessions and are two of nicest, most down to earth people you will ever meet. Thank you Danielle and Eric for entrusting me with such important memories!

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Baby Ruby : Orange County Newborn Session

One of the sweetest and most beautiful newborns I’ve ever had the pleasure of photographing. Ruby so slept contentedly in her parents’ arms and was the perfect little model for me. I was surprised at how often she smiled at just a week old, but not surprised that it was often at the sound of her Mother’s voice talking gently to her. I love that I got a few of her smiling, usually I’m lucky if I can get one from a newborn. Congratulations Linda and Chris on your precious baby girl!

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Jennifer & Michael’s Shady Canyon Wedding

Jennifer and Michael met years ago in Chinese school emceeing an event. What I love most about Jennifer and Michael’s story is that they quite literally grew up together. They’ve spent time together in high school going to the beach, had to say goodbyes as they went off to MIT and Dartmouth, then spent a considerable amount of time dating long distance – traveling back and forth to see each other as they finished their schooling, then finally buying their first home together and planning a wedding from out of state …making it work through the years, though it wasn’t ideal or easy. And isn’t that what marriage is? Making things work when it’s not all unicorns and rainbows? In all that these two do, what I love and respect most about them is that they work hard for each other and their relationship that they hold so dear.

I really couldn’t have asked for a sweeter couple to work with, but not only that, their friends and family were also so incredibly helpful and kind.  I absolutely loved photographing their wedding day and can’t wait to show you some of their collection. Enjoy!

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Photographer: Sarah K Chen Photography
2nd & Assistant : Connie M Chung & Christine Pham
Film Lab: Goodman Film Lab
Coordinator: Platinum Weddings by Kerrie
Dress: Augusta Jones Juno
Ceremony: Crosslines Community Church
Reception: Shady Canyon Golf Club
Videographer: Elysium Productions
Florist: Nisie’s Enchanted
Beauty: Theresa Huang
DJ: Honored Occasions
Quartet: Chamber Music OC
Bakery: JJ Bakery
Rentals: Signature Party Rentals
Lighting: AK Johnston
Invitations: Paper Plane Paperie
Programs & Menu: Wedding Paper Divas
Photobooth: So Cal Shutterbooth

June 20, 2014 - 7:28 pm Kayla - So pretty!! Beautiful!

Lauren’s First Birthday

I feel so blessed to have been asked to document Lauren’s very first birthday celebration. It seems like only yesterday when Katherine was pregnant and wishing for a sweet baby girl with lots of rolls and soft, squishy cheeks to kiss. And then Lauren came along and completed Katherine and Stephen’s beautiful family.

For the families who hire me to photograph their baby’s first birthday I like to do a short and sweet mini family session the day of the event. I love how relaxed and happy they all look and I hope they all will cherish these photos of their beautiful little family for years and years to come.

Lauren’s first birthday was designed and coordinated by Grand Soirees who always does an amazing job on every event they take on. I loved the feminine details, the hand crafted floral paper backdrop and the laser cut name! I also really loved photographing Lauren’s Mum and grandparents helping her get changed into her hanbok (korean dress). It was such a sweet, intimate glimpse of all the love Lauren receives from her family. Happy Birthday baby girl!

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Design & Production: Grand Soirees
Dessert Backdrop: Grand Soirees
Florals: French Buckets
Rentals: ChiavariChairRentals.com
Cake & Desserts: Sweet & Saucy Shop
Catering: Tutto Fresco & Salad Republic
Linens: GBS Linens
Balloon Artist: Face Formers

March 6, 2014 - 10:28 pm Katherine - Sarah, thank you for these AMAZING photos. You captured so many special and priceless moments of our little baby girl. Cannot thank you enough for what you've given our family. You really have a God-given talent in what you do and we've been so blessed by it. Thank you again from the bottom of my heart. Love you!

Craigslist Ad

It’s come to my attention this week that someone on Craigslist is using my name and business identity to try and scam people. The ad which I believe appeared in the Phoeniz, Arizona area Craigslist has been flagged and is no longer online, but I just wanted to make it clear that the post was NOT made by me. I also do not have or use a hotmail.com email address. If you need to reach me, please do so by using the contact form on my website.

I strongly ask that you help me (and yourself!) by reporting any and all information you have on this person. You can file your complaint at the Internet Crime Complaint Center and also to your local authorities.

Thank you!

Jennifer & Mike’s Engagement

These two have known each other for so long and have this ease and warmth about them that is enviable. I loved photographing the two of them and the love that they share in their parents’ homes while there were in town for our engagement session. It was a gorgeous, warm California day and so we ended their session at a nearby beach as the sun set over the calm waters. It was quite simple, the perfect day with a perfect couple! Jennifer and Mike, I am so looking forward to photographing your wedding this summer!

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January 21, 2014 - 7:44 am Jenn & Mike - Sarah, you're truly magical!!! We absolutely love these pictures--despite our usual plain and homely looks, you totally made us glow :) Can't wait for May!

January 21, 2014 - 8:35 am Simon Huang - Absolutely elegant and beautiful !!!

January 21, 2014 - 12:36 pm Kina - These are really lovely Sarah!