I met Chris Hanson 15 years ago. He was dating my dear friend back then, and the day we met the three of us probably had a really great time. Probably drank too much. Good chance we tried to out crude each other. Shock to no one, I don’t remember what the three of us did that day. What we both remember is that when it was time to go to sleep, Hanson and my friend went into her room, and I slept on the couch. A few minutes after I laid down Hanson was in the doorway of the living room. He came out to check on me, to see if I was ok, to see if I needed anything. It sounds small and insignificant now as I write this, but it wasn’t. It was the very first moment of a lifelong best friendship and we both remember it pretty vividly. Chris is thoughtful, loyal, kind, and understated, and what he showed me in that moment as a 24 year old kid is exactly who he is.
Ashley came on the scene four years ago. She is radiant and beautiful and talented and smart and kind, and way more mature than Hanson. It’s obvious to all that she and Baret Claire, their daughter who will be born in just a few weeks, have filled Chris’ heart and brought meaning to his life. To be a dear friend of Hanson’s feels like an honor, and to see him so happy and so in love with *such* a great woman is a heart explosion like none other.
Hanson (sometimes called Chris) and Ashley’s wedding was at DogPatch Wineworks in San Francisco. The place was super rad, and everything was perfect. Ashley is a master at party planning and good taste. Their ceremony was watched from people’s tables (rad), and their vows were beautiful and heart felt and honest. Hanson’s friends sung You Got It by Roy Orbison during the ceremony and everyone almost poked their fucking eyes out from crying so hard. And by everyone I mean me. My awesome friend, Dod (who I just went to Mexico with the week before for his birthday) officiated the wedding and did a really great job. The food was served family style so it was quick and not lame and delicious and not 4.5 hours (that’s a hint to people planning their wedding). It was the highlight of my career shooting this wedding.
It was the funnest night ever. Everyone loved Ben Wight which is no surprise because he’s the best. Ben Wight loved everybody. Which I threatened he would. I mean, assured.
Chris and Ashley, Ben and I are deeply honored that you asked us to photograph your wedding. You are stars and it was a privilege to be there for you both. Chris, you have filled my heart with your friendship, and filled my life with people who are deeply meaningful to me. I love you more than I could ever possibly express to you. I can’t wait to tell your daughter all about how she has the best dad in the world.
I love you.