Renee and Ian raise a glass as they are toasted by two of the bridesmaids during their reception at the Fermenting Cellar in Toronto's Distillery District. This is one of my favourite wedding photographs from 2014. Whenever possible I try to get behind the bride and groom. While this might seem like an unusual choice I really love it as it gives the couple the same perspective that they remember. Years from now, I think this will really help to bring back memories.
Sometimes as a wedding photographer I like to try something different to get a great wedding photograph. When were were going over the details of their wedding, Kelly and Mike requested that I try to get this specific shot when they had their first kiss during their outdoor wedding ceremony at Steam Whistle Brewery.
One of my favourite parts of this wedding photograph is the reactions on the faces of Kelly + Mike's parents during the kiss. During many photojournalism workshops it was drilled into my head to capture both the action and reaction to a moment. It's even better when you can capture both in the same photograph.
Sometimes it's better to be lucky than good!
I was photographing Alex & Daniel's tea Ceremony at the Eglinton Grand in Toronto and had decided to lie down on the floor to get a different angle. I really strive to give my wedding clients as many different perspectives as possible. Evan though I photograph most weddings myself, couples are always amazed at the different perspectives I manage to capture.
Anyways, I had taken a few pictures and was just about to get up when a late arriving guest (with amazing red shoes!) walked right in front of me perfectly framing Alex & Daniel as they presented their parents a ceremonial glass of tea.
There's an old saying in photography by Robert Capa... 'If your photographs aren't good enough, you're not close enough'
I believe this is true and have tried to always remember that as I'm photographing weddings. This picture is from FILL IN NAME wedding reception at the Fermenting Cellar in the Distillery District of Toronto. This is the decisive moment as he removes the garter from her leg and just wouldn't have been the same if I was standing 10 feet away.
A great photographer once told me that you should never be able to tell how tall a photographer is just by looking at his pictures.
This wedding photograph, from Juilia + Brett's London wedding at the Elsie Perrin Williams Estate, is a great example of this. Julia and her bridesmaids had just finished their hair and makeup and wanted to get a bite to eat so obviously they stopped at a Wendy's. Wendy's Restaurants aren't the most attractive or interesting photo locations in the world so I was really struggling to find a good angle when I thought about standing on a chair and shooting down to remove all the 'ugly' from the picture.
I really like the way the image turned out and was happy to see that it has one several wedding photography awards over the years.
Sylvia was getting her hair and make up done in a condo party room of a friend before her outdoor ceremony and wedding reception at Atlantis Pavilion in Toronto. To be honest, the room wasn't that nice. Typical boring neutral colors and furniture and nothing interesting to use as a framing device.
The only thing the room had going for it was the massive windows that when the sun popped behind the clouds took on a really cool colour temperature. So I exposed for the background which cf course put Sylvia and the hair and makeup in silhouette.
I don't usually do any heave editing in Photoshop, I like my images to look like photographs instead of interpretative fine art. :) But in this case, I ramped up the saturation to make the colours really pop and increased the blacks/contrast to really help define the silhouette.
I really like this picture of Janessa from her wedding at the Nith Ridge Estate just outside of Cambridge, Ontario.
She had just hung her beautiful wedding dress up and was showing it off to her friends. The tricky part her was that she had the massive window behind her which was the only source of light in the room. To prevent her from going into silhouette I had to make sure that her face was juxtiposed with something dark as well to catch the beautiful rim lighting.
This wedding photograph is from Viki + Yuri's wedding at the Weston Golf & Country Club in Toronto.
Viki had just finished getting into wedding dress and was chatting with a bridesmaid when I noticed the beaming smiles on her parents faces as they looked on from the doorway. Moments like this are great because Viki had no idea this was happening so it will become a cherished memory for her when she looks back through her wedding pictures in years to come.
This picture is a bridal portrait from Nicole + Bobby's Toronto wedding at La Primavera banquet hall.
I always like to take a few minutes after the bride is ready and capture some simple, elegant bridal portraits. It's always a bonus when the bride get's ready in her parents house where she grew up... It seems like a really nice way to both end her old life and begin her new one.
I really like the contrast of the cool window light and the warm tones from the lamp in the background, a great little trick that one of my photography mentors taught me.
This shot is from an amazing wedding I photographed back in 2012 at Graydon Hall in Toronto.
Christa had just finished getting into her wedding dress and her father came into the room to see her for the first time. Without any words he walked over and embraced his daughter with a big hug. The key to his picture for me is mom looking on in the background, clutching a tissue... It speaks to the emotion of a moment like this.
The wedding was planned by Cynthia Martyn Events who did such an amazing job.
Alex gives her mom a kiss as she prepares to walk down the aisle during her wedding ceremony at the Eglinton Grand in Toronto.
Guests are entertained by the groomsmen playing guitar while Mike + Kelly sign the wedding registry during their outdoor wedding ceremony in downtown Toronto at the Steam Whistle Brewery.
The parents look on and and enjoy the moment as Olga + Jeff exchange wedding rings during their winter ceremony at Langdon Hall in Cambridge, Ontario.
Everyone celebrates after Chris and Samarra finish signing the ketubah during their wedding at the family farm in Ontario.
Sometimes you have to just roll with the punches.
Kendra + Ryan had planned to have their wedding ceremony on her parents beautiful property in the Grey-Bruce area of Ontario. Of course as the time got closer the threatening clouds were going nowhere and since there was no real back up plan, umbrellas were passed out and the show went on.
Amazingly, the rain did nothing to dampen anyone's spirits. Kendra never stopped smiling throughout the entire ceremony and most of the guests managed to stay relatively dry. On the other hand, I was completely soaked. But the cameras were waterproof and I had a job to do!
This wedding photograph is a good example of a couple rules of composition. The chairs and umbrellas act as leading lines which draw your eyes towards the subject of the picture, Kendra + Ryan. Their also very repetitive which also helps again to focus attention on the subject.
I love the way Samarra + Chris are framed by the silhouette of their chuppah during their Jewish wedding ceremony on the family farm.
Shannon and Stephan are illuminated by a perfect shaft of light from the setting sun as they kiss during their outdoor wedding ceremony at the Donalda Club wedding in Toronto.
There is nothing I like better than photographing joy. And joy is evident on Tania + Brianna's face as they are announced as a married couple during their wedding ceremony in Collingwood at the Tremont Cafe.
Such a great little detail from Julia + Brett's wedding ceremony at the Elsie Perrin Williams Estate in London Ontario.
The wedding ceremony was just finishing and the couple was about to walk back up the aisle when the flower girl and ring boy unfurled a 'just married' banner.
I love this wedding picture from Sharlene + Greg's intimate Langdon Hall wedding.
This was a second marriage for both of them and it was really amazing to see how close the two families were. This moment is during the ceremony right after thew were announced as husband and wife.
In photography you always want to try and have a good foreground, middle ground and back ground. You want the view to be drawn into the picture and for them to always have somewhere for the eye to go. This picture does all that. You start off with the expression of joy on Sharlene's daughters face, then back to Greg hugging his two daughters and then finally to the guests in the background cheering them on!
This wedding was a special challenge fore me as there were only 9 people, including the bride and groom, so it was really important that I blend in and just become a 'friend with a camera' for the day. I really do love smaller, intimate weddings like this one as I think their relaxed pace and fewer people allow for more great moments to happen and emotions to bubble though.
I love this image from Deborah & Joe's wedding at Wildfire Golf Club on the shores of Stoney Lake in the Kawartha region of Ontario.
We had just finished their outdoor wedding ceremony in the ruins of an old barn and Deborah + Joe were leading all their guests back to the reception. Usually, after a ceremony it's a bit of controlled chaos as everyone is lining up to get out of the church and then getting into limo's and cars to head to the reception but here it was just a nice moment as everyone walked back and enjoyed the beautful day.
I love a happy accident.
I was posing Lisa + Greg's wedding party on top of a small hill while we did some portraits and then went down to the bottom of the hill to grab the shot. Their daughter, who was also the flower girl, decided she's had enough of pictures and came down the hill to hang out with me. I grabbed this picture just as she reached me.
Sometimes shooting at really shallow depths of field really works well. I like the way that the rest of the wedding party is still in the picture but because their out of focus the viewer is really drawn to the subject of the picture... the adorable flower girl!
I love this picture from Stephanie + Mike's Toronto restaurant wedding at the Le Select Bistro. Whenever possible I try to travel with the bride and groom, you never know when a great moment will happen. We had just finished with some wedding portraits at Osgoode Hall and had got in a cab to head to the reception at Le Select Bistro when Mike and Stephanie were laughing and giggling about something and I grabbed this shot. As I've said before, I love photographing joy at weddings so this has obviously become one of my favourite images in my wedding portfolio.
You just never know when a great moment will happen at a wedding. Marg + John had just stepped outside after an intimate winter wedding ceremony at the Cambridge Mill when I heard screaming. One of Marg's friends had just happened to be driving by and stopped the car to run out and hug and congratulate her friend. This picture always serves as a good reminder to me to always be ready with my cameras at a wedding because it's not just at the scheduled and organized parts of the wedding day where the great photographs happen.
I like to get in close with my wedding photography as you can see from this picture from Lucy + Jason's Canoe Restaurant wedding in downtown Toronto.
Mom had just finished her toast to the new couple and everyone was raising their glass. I used the person on the right of the picture to try and frame mom a little and provide some foreground interest. I like the repeating elements of the wineglasses as well, helps to provide context to to the image and let the view know what's going on.
I love the emotion and layers in this candid wedding photograph from Leigh + Jon's wedding at The Museum in Kitchener.
Gesture is such a huge part of photography. It's a really hard thing to explain but when you see it, you know it. This photograph from Pam + Alex' s wedding reception at 99 Sudbury in Toronto is only successful because of that certain way Pam's hand has reached up to Alex's arm.
I love photographing during 'blue hour', that time after sunset when there is still available light and the sky takes on that amazing shade of deep blue. This photograph is from Amy + Chris' wedding on the shores of Lake Huron at a private residence and I love the contrast of the warmth of the lights from the tent against the cool blue evening sky.
I love the look of joy on Nicole's fathers face as they enjoy their dance together during their reception at La Primivera in Toronto.
I love this moment from Jesse + Cassandra's wedding at the Ridges of Manitou in Muskoka.
The song 'Jessie's Girl' was playing and for obvious reasons they were really enjoying it on the dance floor. I've found that if there's one thing about my work that is consistent over the years, it's that I always am drawn to photographs that capture joy. And I think this picture does a great job of that.
Too many brides and grooms stress out about the wedding and don't even seem to enjoy their big day. Not so with Pam and Alex and their wedding at 99 Sudbury in Toronto.
I always like to try and grab one final portrait before I head home after a wedding.
This one is from Jennifer + Brad's wedding at the SteamWhistle Brewery in Downtown toronto. Jennifer + Brad are actually standing on a picnic table to help get the nice background of the city skyline.
Grandma parties it up during the reception at Le Select Bistro in Toronto.