Congratulations Gaby & Jeff!

Congratulations to Gaby and Jeff!  It was my pleasure to photograph your wedding yesterday and to be a witness to your beautiful day.

It was also fun to hear it confirmed in all the wedding speeches what I had suspected about Gaby after our engagement shoot – that she is indeed the most organized person you might ever meet!  The wedding ceremony and reception was held at Le Jardin in Woodbridge, Ontario and offered a great place from start to finish.  A personal highlight was photographing the mariachi band that played during dinner.  Not only was the band great, but they sang what I can only assume are some old favourites, which encouraged some of the wedding guests to join right in the singing!

Wedding guests and friends, you are invited to view the rest of the wedding photos. Please click here.

Katherine and Beth’s engagement shoot around the woods of Wychwood

Katherine and Beth are a couple who hold a special place in the heart for me and my husband Fred.  Katherine (in the red shirt), is our minister at St. Matthew’s United Church and married us over three years ago.  We checked out the church out of total convenience (it is literally a stone’s throw from our house) but decided to continue going because we love the way Katherine runs the service.  We knew for sure we really liked Katherine when she jumped at the opportunity to be a part of our rather unconventional surprise wedding.

So when Katherine met Beth about a year and a half ago we were really happy for her because we saw instantly how our always cheerful minister gained an extra depth to her happiness.  Needless to say I was thrilled when I was asked to be the photographer for their upcoming November wedding.

Here are a few of our favourites from our recent engagement shoot.  All the photos below were taken in the beautiful enclave of Wychwood Park.

Congratulations Charlotte & Jeanette!

Congratulations to Charlotte and Jeanette!

The celebration, on the coveted 10-10-10 wedding date was an intimate affair set entirely in the University room of the Park Hyatt.  I was among the sixteen other people in the room witnessing the love as Charlotte and Jeanette sealed their lifelong commitment to each other with their vows.  It doesn’t matter how many times I’ve heard it or how the wording may vary, but I am moved each time I hear wedding vows – especially after I have been married myself.  It was special to see Katherine, the same minister who married me and Fred, preside over today’s ceremony.

Thank you for choosing me to document the details of your wedding day.

Wedding guests, you are invited to view the photos from today by clicking here.

Michele & Maizy – mother and daughter photo session

Michele and Maizy came to me as winners of a silent auction fundraiser for King Edward public school.  Michele bid on portrait package not knowing much about me and based solely on the sample album I had on display at the event – so thank you!

Michele and Maizy also brought their dog Taz to the session and he was a great addition to the session.  He also served as an ice breaker.  I had a feeling that Maizy was a bit dubious about the whole process of a photo shoot when she first arrived, but after I asked her to tell me about Taz and to pose with him, she completely warmed up.  Soon after she was showing her creative side and was up the task of coming up with some fun setups with me.

It was a treat for me to have such a small group to work with and I had a hard time culling the photos to a reasonable number for them to review.  It was obvious in each photo what a strong bond they had and I look forward to being able to hang out the same way with my own daughter as she gets older.  Enjoy!

Congratulations Monique and Andrew – sneak peak!

Congratulations Monique and Andrew!

It was an all around classy affair at the beautiful Royal York Hotel.  There were so many gorgeous photo ops at this wedding that I shot a record number of images.  Lots of editing ahead but of course, I can’t help but share just a few with you.  Enjoy and stay tuned here for the rest of the photos!

Update – Wedding guests, you are invited to view the photos by clicking here.

I’m a friend of Jen Jackson – realtor headshots

Jen Jackson and I go way back… so far back that her wedding photos pre-dates my blogging days and I unfortunately have nothing to link to for her wedding!  I titled this post “I’m a friend of Jen Jackson” because back  in our pub crawling days with the rugby team, that’s what half the attendees would say when we would ask them how they found out about the event.  Jen and I reminisced about those good old days during our shoot, and what’s funny is that the referral network was so deep that one of the attendees told Jen Jackson, that she had heard of the event from Jen Jackson!

I have a feeling that Jen will bring the same sort of magic to her new career as a realtor.  She is targeting her initial marketing at her building on Bay street which is why we made use of the distinctive sculpture.  We also tried a couple of wardrobe changes and I really loved the leather jacket look as well as the striped T under the blazer.  The collared shirt under the blazer was old-fashioned and way too cliche for someone like Jen.  Here are two of my favourites from the day.

My loves

Toronto Dragons Rugby Baby

I was inspired to write a bit about rugby, one of my great loves after hearing U of T’s new dean of phys ed Ira Jacobs speak last night at the football alumni golf tournament.  Jacobs stressed the importance of competitive sports in the university life and that many varsity athletes and alumni would consider their experience in sport to be as important as their academic experiences in the lecture halls and labs.  I couldn’t agree more.

For many years rugby was a big part of what defined me.  I started playing in my hometown of Burlington for the Centaurs, thanks to my best friend Karen dragging me off the couch and to a beginner’s clinic during the last year of high school.  I fell in love with the challenge of a new game, and the pure physical joy in exerting myself.  There was something about scrumming down, making tackles and running in the open field that the more traditional high school sports could not fulfill.

I went on to play varsity rugby for the University of Toronto Varsity Blues and a whole other aspect of rugby opened up for me.  Being a part of a team creates an instant network of mentors, study partners and lifelong friends.  It was a home-base among the overwhelmingly large student population.  I got involved in managing the team, leadership at the athletic department and later leadership at my summer club team, the Toronto Saracens.  I continued to play after university and stopped about six years ago once weddings started taking over my Saturdays.

The rugby social network casts a wide net and it was because of it that I first met Fred.  Although back in those days he wanted no part of me.  I was that (very  young and very stupid) girl who jumped on the field to play intramural rugby with the men!  (Really, what was I thinking).  Fast forward almost 15 years and the two of us are now three, with Amira as the littlest Toronto Dragon.  My non-wedding summer Saturdays are usually spent taking in the game from the sidelines surrounded by my greatest loves; Fred, Amira, and my dogs Kafrey and Six.  Thank you rugby.

Gaby & Jeff’s engagement shoot at Humber Bay Park – Toronto west end

So you think you are organized?  I would be confident in betting that you may come in second to Gaby, today’s featured bride-to-be.  At our first meeting in January (before they had even signed the contract) Gaby presented me with an itinerary for the wedding day.  And seven months later, we had perhaps the shortest post-shoot-logistics-talk in which she just confirmed that yup, itinerary still stands.  Awesome!

Before I go on, I need to thank the ever so kind Adele and Kevin Shaw for recommending me to their good friends Gaby and Jeff.  I have come by so many wonderful clients through Adele, including her brother and mother, and most of them before I had even shot Adele and Kevin’s wedding!  I could go on.

I met up with Gaby and Jeff at the beautiful Humber Bay Park (Lakeshore and Parklawn) on a sunny summer evening a few weeks ago.  (We had fortunately rescheduled from the original date at the beginning of July – during that first heat wave.)  Gaby and Jeff showed up dressed perfectly for a summer engagement shoot.  I thought it was truly inspired for them to wear complimenting colours of the same lightness.

Thanks for being such a sweet couple and so organized!  Looking forward to your October wedding.