NYC Elopement and Portrait Photographer | Smitten Chickens
Emotional, Authentic, Inclusive Portrait and Elopement Photography | NYC |

Smitten Chickens NYC Wedding Photographer | About Sarah + Chris


Smitten Chickens is the husband and wife wedding and elopement photography team of Sarah Hoppes and Chris Rizzo in NYC.


We are Sarah Hoppes and and Chris Rizzo, a married couple specializing in elopement photography, and portraits. We live in Riverdale, Bronx with 3 cats and our amazing baby girl.

Why We do What We Do

 Here's our manifesto on why photography is so important.   We love making beautiful images, but pretty is only a tiny part of why our job matters so much. If we’ve done our job right, our work will mean more and more to our clients the more time passes, because that’s the power of good photography. We chose to focus on emotion, authentic moments, and classic shooting and editing techniques because that’s what stands the test of time.


We understand the importance of a wedding for you and your loved ones. We got married two days after Hurricane Sandy, and had to re-plan everything in one day. We REALLY understand. Couples trust us to capture day one of their marriage, so they can relive those moments when hundreds and hundreds of days have passed.  

That's a responsibility we don't take lightly.


We love comic books, horror films, sci-fi, fantasy, and heavy metal, so if you're incorporating any of these elements into your wedding, we want to be involved.  

WE adore animals.

We currently have 3 cats: Pip, Oliver, Izzy, and Harry.  All of them were rescues, and they love to snuggle anyone who comes to visit.

 If we had the ability, we would live on a farm full of rescue animals of all types.

We Believe in Giving Back.

We donate $50 from each wedding and 5% of all other bookings to your choice of three charities: Best Buddies, ACLU, or the Trevor Project.

We also offer a discount to any one who works in public or civil service, as a way to say thank you to those who give back every day.

If we sound like your kind of people, get in touch. We'd love to chat!

About Sarah


Hi there! I'm Sarah, and I want to turn your memories into beautiful art.

I worked for 7 years in advertising and entertainment, but my photographic passion is capturing authentic moments for people in love.

As a plus-sized woman who spent years dealing with my own negative body image, I now use my skills as a photographer to make people of all shapes and sizes see their own beauty. If you've ever felt undeserving of professional photography, I really hope you'll let me change your mind. I promise to make you look good, and to make the process fun.

I'm the daughter of a special education teacher,which played a big role in shaping the person I am today. I've worked as a counselor at an  camp for people with disabilities, and I currently teach English as  New Language to high school students in the Bronx. 

In addition to getting to do what I love for a living, some things I’ve done that make me proud: Meditating with monks in Thailand; Learning to use a power drill; Winning awards for competitive public speaking; Reading 50 books in a year; Dancing with Hare Krishna converts in West Virginia; Traversing Europe on a shoestring; and Running (Surviving) 4 half marathons.



Hi. I'm Chris, and I'd love to say my origins are shrouded in mystery, but that's not really true. I'm originally from New Hampshire and went to film school at the New York Film Academy. Since graduating the Film Academy, I've worked in advertising, reality TV, and documentaries as a film and video editor.

I bring all my experience in film and video production to make the best images and videos for the couples who hire us. I understand deadlines, hard work, professionalism, reliability, and giving everything a commercial level of finesse.

Some random things I love: my wife and daughter; our cats; "Buffy the Vampire Slayer;" comics; cake; horror films; science fiction; chocolate mousse; and Batman.


Now you know a bit about us. We’d love to hear more about you!

Photo credits: Portrait with cats: Pennace Photography; Black and white portrait : JayLee Photography. Wedding photo: Kelly Prizel.  Sarah's headshot: Amber Marlow Photography. All others: Smitten Chickens.