Good neighbours

Good neighbours, Fred, Jing, Amira, Michael, Tessa, Danielle and Scarlett. Photo by Star photographer Keith Beatty.

Check out today’s article in The Star! We are proud to have such great neighbours in Michael, Danielle, Tessa and Scarlett and our story seems even better nestled among the bad neighbour stories in this article. I love the photo of all of us – I wish I knew that Keith was shooting so wide, I would have done a better job clearing our porch! The photo was taken the day we were leaving for our New Brunswick road trip, which the open cooler betrays.

The article is written by Denise Balkissoon and the photo taken by Keith Beatty. I’ve linked to the article on the Star’s mobile site because the photo is not cropped like it is in the full web-version.

Semi stories: What life is like when you share a wall (–semi-stories)

Anna & Brad are getting married soon! | Engagement photos at the Beaches Toronto

Official online congratulations on Imajing dot com for Anna and Brad’s engagement are way overdue – in fact they are getting married in just two weeks! So congratulations guys! I’m looking forward to shooting your wedding in a couple weeks in Oakville and at Piper’s Heath Golf Club.

I’ve gotten to know Anna and Brad over the years through our mutual friends Tony and Agnes. In fact, they first caught each other’s eyes at Tony and Agnes’ 2006 wedding. They were groomsman and maid of honour and I was also the photographer.

We had the engagement photo session down at the beach in Toronto’s east end. Brad and Anna had their first date at the Beach’s Jazz Festival so it was fitting to return to the site for their photos.

We warmed up first with the team-building task of balancing rocks…

And ended the evening with some shots by some of the stately trees lining the boardwalk. See you soon!

Galberg family portrait | Imajing | Oakville family portraits

I’ve already ruminated in a previous post about the privileged point of view us photographers have into the lives of others. My story with Katia goes way back to before I considered or realized that photography could be more than just a weekend hobby. We’re talking about first year at the University of Toronto Innis College Residence. Five girls, total strangers, assigned to the same suite simply because (as we later discovered at our first frosh pub night) we had each answered in our questionnaire that we listened to ‘anything but country’. Fifteen years later the roomies (this also includes Heather, another story) still gets together every Christmas and the six of us have added spouses and children and grown to nineteen.

Along with Colin, another photographer they are friends with, I’ve had the pleasure of adding to Katia and Mark’s family visual history. Last time I shot them Perun had just turned one, you can see some of the photos on my old blog. Katia called me to capture some images of the entire Galberg family as they gathered to celebrate their parents 40th wedding anniversary! With an infant, a toddler and a preschooler amongst the group I had to keep the session moving at a whirlwind pace and was almost a bit disappointed when I managed to get all the combinations of people done in 45 minutes! But even then, I was pushing the limits of the kids. As you can see little Odin decided that it was a good time for a nap.

Ima-not-Jing | Toronto Wedding Photographer

“Ima-not-Jing”, or how I let go and shot for someone else.

I had the pleasure of pinch-hitting for Dave Abreu Photography on the weekend and shooting the wedding of the lovely Helen and Daniel. For whatever reason the original photographer couldn’t shoot so I accepted the gig on the Wednesday leading up to the wedding.

And then I began to question my decision immediately. Of the many thoughts running through my head I was first and foremost not sure how I could spend all day not being “Imajing”, and just being “Jing shooting for Dave”. In fact I wasn’t even sure if I would want to blog about this. Was I taking on too much with an upcoming family roadtrip that I hadn’t packed for yet? Are Helen and Daniel nice? Cute? Personable? These are things I would normally know about the couple after meeting and shooting them months before the wedding — luckily Helen and Daniel were all of the above. All I had was a simple itinerary with addresses and phone numbers and the knowledge that the couple would be easy to work with. This must be how substitute teachers feel.

Well as it turns out, weddings are weddings, people are people and I am Jing so everything came out sunny-side up! I’m just sharing a few photos from the day. The rest will be posted on Dave’s website.

As a fun sidenote, I did see a familiar face at the reception venue. Fantasy Farm (50 Pottery Road) is now owned by Jimmy and Sakie, who back in my varsity rugby days ran O’Grady’s pub on College. Good to see you Sakie!

Now back to Imajing.

In the boudoir with Heather | Imajing | Toronto boudoir photographer

Remember that episode of Sex and the City when Samantha decided to hire a photographer for her own nude photo session? She was doing it simply so that she could look back as an old lady and admire how hot she was.**

Heather, who as a wedding guest once bought some prints from me, contacted me again recently to ask about doing a boudoir session. Her motivation wasn’t to give to a significant other (although it would make a great gift for the person who has everything), it was simply a gift for herself. How cool is that?!

And while my entire job revolves around making people, specifically women look good in photos, I was inspired by the added challenge of working in such an intimate setting and teetering the line of good taste. In our pre-shoot consultation I visited Heather’s apartment (which was later transformed into our studio) and talked about hair, makeup and wardrobe. She had already splurged on a great looking corset in a bold purple satin so I knew I wanted to keep the setting light and playful.

The next task was bringing out Heather’s inner kitty-cat persona. We had the music going and with some gentle encouragement she was soon hitting poses I could snap away at. Here’s one that jumped out at me from the back of the camera right away and it still remains my favourite after reviewing and editing all the photos. I’m only releasing one image from Heather’s session. If you want to see more you’ll have to ask Heather!

**Trivia: the actor who played the gape-jawed photographer’s assistant later appeared on a TV show playing George Michael’s uncle. Name the actor, his character name or the show!

Congratulations Stephanie and Dean! | Imajing Photography | University of Toronto Photographer

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Congratulations Steph and Dean!

The ‘something blue’ for Stephanie and Dean’s wedding came in form of the home of the Varsity Blues, the University of Toronto.  I have a long history with U of T, starting there as a student, then employee and now as photographer for the Faculty of Phys Ed.  It is both refreshing and familiar to add wedding photographer to this list.  U of T is full of beautiful settings for weddings and I was pleased to learn early in our discussion process that even before confirming the venue, Steph had already booked the photo permit for the University College “south, 1A” spot through the Office of Space Management.*  For them, this particular spot holds special significance as it was where Dean proposed to Stephanie!

The ceremony was held on the second floor of the Faculty Club with a cocktail reception in the main lounge followed by dinner in the main dining room.  Stephanie wore a dress that was restructured from her mother’s wedding dress.  I’m not sure what the original dress looked like but the new version was modern, classic and practical!  I love seeing and smelling peonies in brides bouquets – so perfect for an early summer wedding.  The rain held off just enough for our outside photos.   As I typically do, I shot all the photo combinations involving parents and children first, next the wedding party and lastly I send everyone away and have the bride and groom all to myself.  This time we even sent the limo driver away and without the pressure of a driver worried about running late had a fun and relaxed walk back to the Faculty Club, which resulted in some of my favourite images of the day.

Please visit Steph and Dean’s page at to see their full wedding gallery. The password for this page is Dean’s last name and it is case sensitive.

*This department name has always made me giggle.  Not to be confused with the Aerospace division.

Allison & Dan | Wedding Photography in the Kawarthas

If you can’t view the slideshow above due to Flash issues, please ** click here **iPhone/iPad friendly version (Quicktime .mov file)

Congratulations Allison and Dan!

As if Allison and Dan weren’t nervous and anxious enough with the anticipation of getting married. Fingers and toes crossed as the sky darkened and wind picked up while they each got ready in their private log cabins. The venue was on the scenic Stoney Lake at the Viamede Resort in the Kawarthas and it promised to offer a beautiful backdrop… if the weather would hold up.

It couldn’t have been better scripted. The sun came out as Allison and her father started their procession towards the lake: she and Dan locked gazes and their nervous energy fell away just as a beam of sunshine bathed them in warmth.

I’m committing a blogging no-no of writing this quite some time after it all happened, but I have the advantage of hindsight and perhaps even a bit of nostalgia as I reflect on the day. I mentioned in a previous post about Allison and Dan that they have two boston terriers (or ‘terrors’ as coined by Allison’s dad). Kasha and Fenwick were decked out in a bow-tie and crinoline and could easily have stolen the show but all eyes turned to the human couple as they exchanged their vows. Allison looked beautiful in her strapless lace overlay gown in champagne and who could forget those Jimmy Choos stilettos! Dan was of course beaming at his bride and was always able to make her laugh.

As a photographer my favourite part of the day was walking with Allison and Dan to the dock and using the dramatic dark sky as a backdrop. Groomsman Dana was a big help, holding the off-camera flash for me and even helping with fine-tuning some poses for the bride and groom.

I hope you enjoy viewing the photos as much as I enjoyed creating them!

To view and order prints from the full wedding gallery, please go to Allison and Dan’s page on The password is Dan’s last name and is case-sensitive, so mind your Ms and Cs.

St. George Golf and Country Club | Imajing Photography | Toronto Wedding Photography

I had the pleasure of photographing the St. George Golf and Country Club this past weekend. Club wedding coordinator Andrea Aguiar, who I had met last fall at Theressa and John’s wedding called me in to photograph the venue for their website and promotional materials. The venue was set up for a wedding reception later that afternoon. The palette was elegant combination of cream, off-white and green – I would love to see if the bride and groom matched my mind’s image of them!

It was also a change of pace for me. I’m accustomed to having people in my shots and often with wedding photography you are reacting to the moment. The people, the event, the dynamic of it all sets up the shot and I just have to be prepared to capture it in a beautiful way. Here in this setting I had to be proactive in creating the shot. I also wanted it to look like the venue was poised for its guests and didn’t look too staged.

Located in the west end of Toronto (Islington and Eglinton), St. George Golf and Country club would be a lovely setting for a mid-sized reception or one-venue wedding. The two weddings I shot there in the past have been atypical setups. One was an intimate dinner and the second was a marche style dinner in the main room.

Here are a few from the day, enjoy!

Allison & Dan’s Engagement Session | Imajing Photography | GTA Wedding Photographer

Just catching up on some blogging today and thinking about this weekend’s upcoming wedding at the Viamede Resort. I’m looking forward to Allison and Dan’s big day for a few reasons. First, it is scheduled to be an outdoor wedding in the afternoon (cross your fingers for us!) which is always great for photos. Second, this is a great couple. I got a really good vibe from them when I met them and I could see that Dan is totally besotted with his bride-to-be. As a bonus they are dog-people and have the patience and love to raise two Boston Terriers pups. Here are some photos from their engagement session taken last fall at the University of Toronto Scarborough campus with their two Bostons.

Allison and Dan engagement

University of Toronto’s Bruce Kidd retires | Imajing Photography | Toronto event photographer

After 19 years at the helm of the University of Toronto’s Faculty of Physical Education and Health, Bruce Kidd is retiring and riding off into the sunset on his trusty bicycle. I had the pleasure of photographing the first of his many send-off events on Tuesday, May 25th at the beautiful Great Hall at Hart House. Bruce was surrounded by people from all aspects of his life. We were all touched and amazed as his colleagues and friends fondly recalled their personal Bruce stories.

Bruce is not only an academic and activist, but also an Olympian, a member of the U of T and the Canadian Sports Halls of Fame and the Order of Canada. During my time as a student-athlete and then later as an employee at U of T, Bruce was one of my favourite senior administrators. He also happens to be my neighbour and I’m always happy to bump into him at local haunts like the Wychwood Barns or Fiesta Farms where we each go for our Gryfes bagel fix.

You can read more about the event on the U of T website.

Bruce Kidd with his mentor and Olympic gold medallist Sir Murray HalbergBruce Kidd and Murray Halberg

Bruce Kidd

Bruce Kidd