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The Marko Family :: Smithers Family Photographer

I knew it was going to be a beautiful morning and I was really looking forward to spending the first calm, quiet hours with this family. The last time I photographed Caroline and her kids, her son was sick with a fever so we did our best to keep it low-key and easy. This time, everyone was in fine form and we spent the session down by the Bulkey River skipping rocks, goofing around and lounging about.

I really love photographing this family – Caroline is a bit of a firecracker (I will insert no red hair comments here!) and knows how to make her family smile. The kids are just so loving and kind with each other and the whole family just knows how to have fun with each other. It really made for such a carefree, easygoing time and I think that family dynamic really shows in these images.

It would be really hard for me to pick a favourite – the way that Scott looks at Caroline against the barn backdrop or the way he looks at his kids on the beach blanket. Caroline cuddling with her son who is on the brink of teenage-hood and can still get a good giggle out of him. I can just hear the laughter all over again when I see these and that really makes me smile and makes my heart feel happy.

If you are considering having family portraits taken by any photographer, the best advice I can give you is to be present with your kids and have no expectations (especially with the little ones!). If you come ready and willing to have an adventure, wherever the session goes, I guarantee that your time will be a smashing success. And maybe a few Smarties for the little guys *wink*

Enjoy these sunny, summer images!

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Amanda and Nick :: Smithers Photographer

I spent the past 6 days in Smithers, BC, which is halfway between Prince George and Prince Rupert along Highway 37. We lived up there for 4 years before coming back to the city to be closer to family after I had my son. I still like to visit every year and I still shoot a few weddings there every summer. It’s always nice to see old friends and make new ones – case in point, this session.

Amanda invited me over for dinner and I had my first Kombucha experience! I have been hearing about it lately but always thought it was something fermented to eat, like kimchi (although I have never had kimchi, either), but I discovered that it is a very tasty fermented drink. I am really big on fizzy drinks – not the pop variety, but more like club sodas and the drinks that our friend Mandolyn over at Island SodaWorks makes. I have a weakness for a tasty fizzy, refreshing, fruity drink and kombucha was pretty much the best thing ever. We laughed over how gross the “mother” was and Amanda gave me a piece to take home and start my own (don’t be surprised if you see a blog posting on this later on….). But bacteria aside, we had a nice evening of food and drink and hanging out on their beautiful hilly property where they are currently buttoning up construction on their custom straw-bale home. It’s been a two year labour of love and they are getting very close now to finishing it and moving in. Oh, and that little wool shrug Amanda is wearing? She knitted it. For her wedding last summer. Mad skills these two have.

Happy Wednesday! Enjoy =)

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Baby Harper :: Vancouver Newborn Photographer

I got the email a few days after she was born and I was thrilled to meet her. My wedding couple from a few years ago wanted to have the pregnancy and newborn stages photographed and I couldn’t have been more excited that they wanted to work with me again. I love the progression of life from one stage to the next. And I have to say these two have an incredibly beautiful little girl on their hands. But the part I enjoyed the most was just watching Lauren and Eric change into parents – it was such a seamless transition and when I met them for their wedding, I knew that they were going to be amazing parents one day. These two are so sweet with little Harper, especially Daddy – she already has him wrapped around her tiny little fingers =)

You can see their maternity photos here as well.

Hope you have a happy Friday! Enjoy!

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Courtney and Austin :: Fraser River Heritage Park Wedding

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Abbotsford Wedding
I first met Courtney last summer at her brother Mark’s wedding. At the reception, someone had told me that they knew Austin was going to propose to Courtney and this person was hoping that he wouldn’t do it that night and steal Mark’s thunder. There were no additional announcements, there were no new engagement rumors that night but Austin did propose shortly after Mark’s wedding. And not long after that, I got an email from Courtney with the good news.

This is my third wedding season in Vancouver and it is such a pleasure to be able to work with the same families every year. There is something just so familiar and wonderful with seeing the same lovely people at siblings weddings. And the Wallbank family is one of my favorites =)

I began my day in Maple Ridge with the dressing details and oh.my.goodness.the.dress. Courtney’s Melissa Sweet gown was quite unlike anything I had ever seen and her whole look reminded me of a flamenco goddess. It was sleek and modern with just the right amount of flounce on the hem. Needless to say, I had a really fun time shooting Courtney in it!

The First Look, bridal party portraits and the ceremony were all located at the Fraser River Heritage Park, which is a beautiful place in Mission. The whole day threatened rain and it did unleash on us a few times, but for the most part the clouds moved around us in circles which made for some very dramatic skies. I’m quite into moody lighting at the moment so these dark skies really indulged me. I just couldn’t help myself.

The reception was at Rancho Caterers in Abbotsford, which had the coolest lights strung on the rafters along with some chandeliers. These were fun to make use of for some of the later events like the bouquet and garter toss. And we had a few extra moments to head down the street for some “sunset” photos (even though it was cloudy).

Thank you Courtney and Austin for having me at your wedding. You guys are so much fun to be around and your families were so welcoming and kind as usual. There’s only one Wallbank left to go! *wink*

Thanks so much to my 7 month pregnant second shooter, Justine Boulin, who took some lovely ones of the boys and also some of the distant perspectives of the First Look. Goodness woman, you are my hero!

Enjoy!

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Bethany and Tim :: Vancouver Lawn and Tennis Club Wedding

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Vancouver Wedding Photographer
What a lovely, lovely wedding. And I have no idea how Bethany and Tim knew that peonies were my favourite flower because they were everywhere at this event – so dreamy. But flowers aside, this day was truly fantastic – the weather was amazing, the couple was beaming, the details spectacular.

I started the day off in Abbotsford at Bethany’s parents beautiful home and I was so happy to see that her heavily altered Maggie Sottero gown was on a velvet mannequin! Her room was a such a treat to shoot her wedding details in with everything already laid out for me, which was really wonderful.

The ceremony took place at Trinity Baptist Church, a beautiful traditional church on the west side of Vancouver. Bethany put her dress on in the side chapel, and some of my most favourite candids were taken during this part of the day, especially when Bethany handed the flowergirl (her niece) the basket with the petals and paper medallions with special words on them like “kind.” The filtered light in the little room was really lovely and with all the ladies packed into this tiny room, it really made for some great moments. Bethany and Tim didn’t want to do a first look but did want to “meet around the corner” for a few brief moments of connection before the ceremony began. At the recessional, the guests threw little pink paper airplanes over the couple as this symbolized how the couple met (and Bethany also works for an airline!).

We did the wedding formals at the Vancouver Art Gallery and also some with just Bethany and Tim at Granville Island, two very iconic locations. Bethany and Tim both currently live in Edmonton but really wanted a few locations that showcase the city that they love and hope to come back to one day.

The reception was at the Vancouver Lawn and Tennis Club, which was a lovely place. The backdrop of the outdoor pool was especially summery and the palette decor of pink, white and gold was perfect. And of course all those peonies for the centrepieces. The meal was wonderful and the evening went along into speeches and mingling with family and friends.

Thank you so much Bethany and Tim for having me photograph your wedding day! And also a thank you to Jayme Lang for being my second shooter for the day.

Enjoy!

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DETAILS

Hair stylist: Rebecca Flore    //    Makeup: Lindsay Grohmueller (sister)    //    Gown: Maggie Sottero (Bridal Debut, Edmonton, AB)    //    Bridesmaids Dresses: BCBG, David’s Bridal, Local Shop in Kelowna    //    Groom’s Suit: Harry Rosen    //    Groomsmens Suits: Moores    //    Ties: The Tie Bar    //    Florist: Bridesmaids put together the bouquets of peonies from a local Chilliwach peony farm    //   Ceremony Venue: Trinity Baptist Church, Vancouver BC    //     Officiant: Kevin Schulz    //    Reception Venue: Vancouver Lawn and Tennis Club    //    Centrepieces:  Arranged by Susan Vaandrager    //    Cake Decorator: Lori Tompkins    //    DJ: Cam Toews    //    Videographer: Reelthought Productions    //    Invitation Designer: Kayla English Creative