As soon as I met Alison and Hunter for our first coffee I knew that I was going to love their Calgary, Alberta winter wedding. They really wanted to do things differently and keep the planning process and simple and carefree as possible. Instead of going the traditional route they planned an intimate brunch wedding at the Lake House for their close friends and family. The officiant quoted Bob Marley, their guests sipped mimosas and we did their portraits on the deck because it was snowing so hard. The day was as relaxed and mellow as this sweet couple and I couldn't have chosen a more perfect wedding to be my first official Calgary wedding!
The good thing about moving to a new city is all of the amazing new areas to explore! I've been dragging my family and my camera out at every opportunity to scout out all often hidden gems that Calgary has to offer. We went for a stroll through Nose Hill Park one weekend and I knew that I had to shoot there. I had a little giveaway on my Instagram and Madison was the lucky winner. She was such a trooper slipping and sliding through the snow on a super cold fall day. It was all worth it though, I'm so happy with how beautiful our session turned out. She is one stunning mama and I'm so glad that we were able to connect. She has since welcomed the sweetest little baby girl!
Kady & Jamie's boho Shylynn Ranch wedding was my first wedding of 2017 and I couldn't have asked for a more perfect one to start my season.
In the week leading up to their wedding my husband and I packed up our North Vancouver condo and began our journey to Calgary with our toddler and newborn in tow. To say it was a busy and stressful time for us is putting it mildly. We packed our moving truck knowing that we would not see our stuff for the rest of the summer as we planned to couch surf until we could move into our new home in Calgary. Trying to jam all of the things that 2 adults, a toddler and newborn need for 2 months into a Subaru Forester is not an easy task let me tell you.
Kady and Jamie are best friends of ours and Jamie actually introduced me to my husband and was the Best Man at our wedding. I was thrilled when they asked me to be their photographer. Having shot a few friends' weddings I knew that I would be making a few sacrifices choosing to "work" instead of just be a guest. But I knew their day was going to be amazing and being their photographer actually allowed me to be more involved. At the time they chose their wedding date we did not yet know that we would be moving to Calgary so it was a total fluke that their wedding coincided with our move. The fact that we were on our way to spend the weekend with our best friends definitely made drive away from our first home together a little bit easier.
Knowing these two, their wedding party and most of their guests I knew the day was going to be filled with fun and laughter and it did not disappoint! Their sweet dog Sam walked her dad down the aisle and stole the show as she begged for someone to throw her ball during their vows. Kady planned and created all the decor herself with the help of Jamie and friends and family. Check out the backdrop for the head table, I'm still obsessed with it! Her cousin and Aunt did all the flowers which were absolutely stunning and her dad managed the popcorn bar. Their guests partied the night away in the beautiful barn to the sounds of a live band and were treated to a surprise (forbidden) late night fireworks display.
With a new baby at home and toddler to chase around everyday I don't have a lot of time for passion projects lately. However, this is something I've been wanting to do for a long time. I partnered with my friend Hilary who started Wild & Tiny mom group to give away a mini session to one lucky mama. If you aren't already, make sure you start following Wild & Tiny on all of their awesome adventures around Vancouver led by Hilary. You'll likely recognize her from my blog and the many shoots I've done with her and her family.
I don't do many family photos anymore but something I notice is that no matter how relaxed and casual I keep things families show up frazzled and frustrated after fighting to get their little ones dressed and out the door and begging and bribing them to "smile at the camera". Don't get me wrong, everyone has fun and we get beautiful photos of everyone smiling at the camera to frame for Grandma and Grandpa but this time I wanted to do something different. As a mom I know how easy it is to get caught up in the rat race of diapers and naps and swimming lessons. Before you know it another stage has passed undocumented except for a few iPhone snaps, likely with mom behind the camera. I wanted to create a calm, loving environment for moms to hang out and interact with their babes and get in front of the lens.
All of the photos came out really beautiful and the sessions were calm and loving, exactly as I envisioned. I was so excited to share them with all of the sweet mamas. Unfortunately not all of the feedback was positive. I received a couple of comments like "Thank you so much for the photos but do you have any more of us looking at the camera and not at each other?" and "I love the ones of my baby but I look terrible." This broke my heart. It wasn't the negative feedback that made me sad but the fact that we are so hard on ourselves. Motherhood is not perfect, its messy, its exhausting. I'm lucky if I get to wash my hair twice in one week, my kids sometimes wear the same outfit two days in a row. We have this constant pressure from social media to live this flawless life and unfortunately thats just not reality. Nobody cares if your house is a disaster, your kids are in their pjs at noon and they're eating Cheerios instead of homemade, gluten free granola. Nobody. When your kids are 40 and looking through photos of the two of you together they are not going to notice that your skin looks bad or that your eyes look tired. So kiss their dirty faces, sit back and sip your cold coffee and savour every single moment. And get somebody to take a damn photo!
Beautiful flower arrangement provided by Special Moments Flowers and Gifts in North Van. They have the cutest little shop, pop by and say hi!
I've had the pleasure of photographing this beautiful couple a few times over the last couple of years so I was super excited when they contacted me about an at home session in their newly renovated home. Although I love at home sessions, they can be really hit or miss depending on lighting and decor. I had no doubt that this one would be gorgeous. Mish has amazing style and always has a great vision for our sessions and this time was no different. I guarantee you'll want to move in with them after seeing how pretty their new home is!
Two of my closest friends are getting married this August in Kelowna and I'm so excited that they chose me to be their photographer! I always struggle with the decision to photograph friends' or family member's weddings because I don't want to miss out on anything and want to be in the moment and enjoy their beautiful day. In the end, I always end up saying yes. Being behind the camera allows me to be an even bigger part of their day and witness so many amazing moments that I wouldn't even know were happening if I was there just as a guest. I also find that I end up creating some of my best work when its for friends because we are all so comfortable together and I'm so invested in making sure they have absolutely amazing photos. The only downside is that it usually takes me twice as long to edit the photos because I'm so in love with every image and they all hold so many special memories for me. Mal & Jess, I can't wait for your special day!
I'm so in love with this romantic indoor maternity shoot! My beautiful friend was absolutely glowing throughout her pregnancy and I'm happy I was able to capture that for her. Flower crowns get me every single time and this stunner from Celsia Floral did not disappoint. As much as I enjoy shooting outdoors with beautiful sweeping backdrops this cozy indoor shoot really allowed us to focus on the shape of her gorgeous belly.