Foggy Georgian Bay Engagement Session | Jenny & Bryan

There are few things we photographers love more than fog, save for maybe couples who fully embrace crazy weather. It was a torrential downpour the day we had set aside for Jenny & Bryan's engagement session. I don't say that lightly. It was torrential. There were puddles I was afraid my car wouldn't get out of once it went in. They had planned to come north for a session near Georgian Bay and a little weather wasn't going to stop them. You never know how a session is going to go when you have crazy weather, but Jenny & Bryan weren't kidding when they said they'd roll with it and that they were excited. They laughed through the entire session and fully embraced everything that came our way. I called in a favour and we started off our session at Kolapore Gardens, where I pick up my CSA every week. He has the most glorious view and barn with such beautiful light and it gave us a dry spot to start in. By the time the light was starting to disappear, the rain had dropped to a drizzle and the fog had rolled in. What a way to end a shoot! DREAMY! 

By far one of my favourite sessions. 

BEYOND excited to see these two again today. Joel & I are heading downtown to document their wedding. I cant' wait to get them giggling again. 

 

The West Coast Camp by The Camp Collective

The West Coast Camp was the first annual summer camp by The Camp Collective. When Tara Lilly first texted me about a new idea her and Sara Rogers were working on, I'm pretty sure my words were "I'm in". It didn't even take a second to think about it. What was there to think about? I've missed the days of summer camp, being surrounded by like minded peers, doing art, challenging myself, hanging out in nature, and being silly. There are no shortages of workshops for photographers, or conferences, but this felt different. This felt like an opportunity to learn and teach at the same time, to let loose and embrace being silly while also working on our businesses in a serious way. 
It didn't disappoint. The location was stunning and provided a beautiful backdrop for hiking, yoga, shoots on the beach, and just sitting and talking. The atmosphere and people were so positive and it felt so safe that it was pretty easy to talk openly. There were many heartfelt conversations and breakthroughs, some tears and lots of laughing. We played camp games, did photo challenges and ate meals together. Even when it was after hours, the learning didn't end. People would pull out their laptops to play with images from the day and it would turn into an impromptu editing class where everyone would share tips and tricks. We all took turns being in front of the camera and behind. It was bookended by the most exciting and magical bus ride I've ever taken. Our bus driver played music and handed out instruments to each of us as we entered. We sang and danced and laughed all the way there. It was the very first bus ride I didn't want to end. 

I learned so much from all of the men and women who were there and took some of my most favourite portraits to date. Being able to teach other's really re-ignited something in me. It turns out I've missed teaching a lot. (Also, I've missed being a councilor, but that came as no surprise. Who wouldn't?)

There's only one ticket left for the next camp in the Rockies, and planning is underway for our Ontario camp. If you're a fan of the outdoors, learning and making friends, you should probably grab a ticket. 
I cannot thank Sara & Tara enough for letting me be part of the first camp, and high fives to Cole Hofstra and Jacob Loafman for being stellar fellow councilors. It was so much fun hanging out with you and working with you all! <3

London England Engagement Session | Vanessa & Simon

On our very first phone call, Vanessa & Simon explained how important London, England was to them individually and as a couple. They were excited about the idea of doing their couple's session in a place that meant something to them, so when I threw the idea out there of coming to England, they were 100% in. Our session felt far less like a photo shoot and far more like hanging out with long lost friends. They showed me around their neighbourhood and pointed out spots that were important historically and personally, they took me to their favourite pub for Sunday roast, told me stories about how they met and then showed me where that happened, they took me through gardens and down secret walkways, showed me bits of England both old and new. Then to top it all off, we had a gin tasting at a local distillery. I mean, any gin fan is a friend of mine. They had me at hello, and I definitely plan on keeping these two. 
What struck me instantly about the two of them was just how much fun they have together and how much they laugh. Not just little laughs, big, full body laughs that are contagious. 

Can't wait to laugh with you again soon. 
xox.f

Walters Falls Wedding | Cass & Jeff

Cass & Jeff opted for a small outdoor wedding ceremony at the Walters Falls Inn, near Georgian Bay. Travelling halfway across the country to celebrate their wedding meant they wanted to take full advantage of the time with their friends and family. Rather than just having everyone join them on the day of, they booked the Walters Falls Inn for two nights and hosted many of their family and friends for a rehearsal dinner the night before. They set out lawn games and gave everyone a chance to get to know one another better. It made for quite an intimate wedding with everyone already comfortable with each other.

The Walters Falls Inn is situated along the Niagara escarpment with the Bruce Trail running through its property and is home to one of the many waterfalls in the Grey Bruce area. It's the perfect wedding venue for an adventurous couple who love being outside. The hike down to the falls isn't particularly easy, especially in a wedding dress, but Cass was excited about it so she came up with a way of protecting her dress on the mucky hike down using a garbage bag. Not gonna lie, I was psyched she was so brave! Also, it turns out orange garbage bags are quite stylish.


Venue : Walters Falls Inn
Officiant : Sandy Conrad
Caterer: Walters Falls Inn
Flowers: Sarah Barber
DJ : DJ Mastermix 
Make-up : Rebecca Chantler
Hair : Katie D'Souza
Dress : Sophie's Dress Shoppe

Niagara Escarpment Engagement Session | Sharon & Peter

Niagara Escarpment Engagement Session 

I live underneath a giant cliff, which makes it pretty easy to adventure, hike, climb, ooh and ahh and arrange Niagara Escarpment Engagement sessions. Normally the oohing and ahhing happens when no one is around to take photos of, which can be incredibly frustrating! Luckily, Sharon & Peter were up for a drive to my neck of the woods for an adventure in the Pottawatomi Conservation Area. We hiked, laughed, told stories and explored the conservation area. These two cuddled up in a small boulder field and tip toed on rocks at the top of the cliff.

Sharon & Peter are compassionate, loving and affectionate and massive baseball fans. Luckily they are also super playful and joke about the fact that they cheer for different teams. Sharon, being from LA, is a Dodgers fan, and Peter, being a Toronto native, obviously loves the Jays. (Not that I'm playing favourites, but I'm with Peter here) Sharon just finished moving from LA to Toronto to start her new life with Peter once they're married. Maybe that means the Jays have a chance at winning her heart? They definitely stole mine with stories of how they met, how they worked through a long distance relationship, humouring me by laughing at my horrible dad jokes, trusting my crazy ideas and learning Peter is working on teaching his students what good hip hop is. We certainly bonded over the fact that I took a History of Hip Hop course in University. Thank you, OCADU. I'm pretty sure we are hip hop buddies for life.

Sharon & Peter are getting married this Saturday in a gorgeous church in Toronto surrounded by an intimate group of family and friends. Joel & I couldn't be more thrilled to be joining them as part of their small intimate group.

 

Grassi Lakes Engagement Session | Lindsay + Bryon

Grassi Lakes Engagement Session with Lindsay & Bryon

I have always wanted to get my tush out to Alberta to explore and adventure, it's been on the list for a long time but it never really occurred to me that I would be heading out there for the first time for a Grassi Lakes Engagement session.

Turns out my couples and I have lots in common; we love spending time adventuring, jumping into waterfalls, hiking and exploring the Canadian landscape. When Lindsay & Bryon mentioned that they'd love to have an engagement session, but that they were thinking of doing it in Canmore, I'm pretty sure I jumped out of my seat with excitement. There was some serious happy dancing (Joel can attest to that). I'm still mind blown by how gorgeous the area was and how perfect the weather was for us (while all of you Ontarian's out there had snow, this was what it was like in Alberta. Sorry!)

Lindsay & Bryon are the laid back, loving, fun, adventurous types you want to be friends with. We started off the day at Phil & Sebastian's in the Simmons building, and then drove out to Grassi Lakes for a little hike, and finished our day with a cider and some grub in Canmore. They were excellent tour guides and pointed me in the right direction for basically all the things I love the most: coffee, landscapes, water, food and cider (well. all the things I love the most except Joel. He was stuck in Ontario). I love it more than anything when a shoot never really feels like a shoot; it just feels like hanging out with long lost friends and I just happen to have my camera with me.

Lindsay & Bryon have already made the trek back to Ontario for their Muskoka wedding this weekend. From the sounds of it, everything is coming together just as they'd envisioned with the help of their amazing friends and family who live out this way. Planning a wedding long distance can't be easy, but Lindsay & Bryon made it look effortless.

Joel & I will be heading out early tomorrow morning to meet them at their cottage. I'm SO excited to see you two again!!
xo.f

 

 

Grey County Waterfall Engagement Session | Meg & Scott

I feel like I have been dreaming about this Grey County waterfall engagement session since I moved up here. So here's the thing... I cannot be near any body of water, especially one that moves, without desperately wanting to be in it. It's a problem. Most of the time I can keep that desire at bay, but when there's waterfalls... I mean... c'mon! So naturally when I shoot couples near any body of water I tell them that they're totally welcome to jump in if they want. One day I knew this would work. I wasn't wrong. When planning this session with Meg & Scott, they were completely open to suggestions for locations, but it had to be near water. (People after my own heart) When the idea of waterfalls came up, I jumped at the chance to scout every single waterfall in the area I could get to, and sent over a super long list of options with descriptions about the waterfall, the hike in, etc. Now you know my secret, I'm a nerd & I may have been a tad excited. 
Meg & Scott are adventurous and playful and they kept creeping closer and closer to the water. Scott had this twinkle in his eyes, so I casually mentioned that if they wanted to jump in, they were welcome to, I even had towels in my car just in case. They took a quick second to exchange glances and then they totally went for it. 
It was basically the perfect Sunday. The weather was spectacular, there were belly laughs had by all and we all ended up in the water at some point. Swoon! We started and finished at Joel's winery, Coffin Ridge, drank cider, ate cheese and olives on the patio overlooking Georgian Bay and played in waterfalls. 
More Sundays like this, please. 

Thank you so much for being so brave and adventurous with us, Meg & Scott. Watch out, we may try to get you rock climbing next, Scott. ;) 
Thank you to my second shooter and partner, Joel for being my second set of eyes, a great wine tour guide and our poison ivy spotter.