Photography Blog

  • King’s Riding Golf Club Wedding | Stephanie and Doug

    I was looking forward to Stephanie and Doug’s wedding since I first met them. They were up for anything at their engagement session and they were getting married at the beautiful King’s Riding Golf Club.

    We did their engagement session in the winter, since they wanted to incorporate skating as Stephanie was learning how to do it, thanks to Doug. They also each brought their favourite book to the engagement session, since they like to read.  Doug is very into Harry Potter and Stephanie likes all kinds of fiction.

    Doug has Scottish ancestry, so he incorporated Scottish items and outfits into their wedding.

    The groom and groomsman had some fun before their wedding. They were all quite comfortable in their kilts. Notice how Doug’s is a different colour than the kilts the groomsmen are wearing. He wore the colours of his family’s clan.  I like how the street sign and Doug’s kilt are almost the exact same colours, but different patterns.

    Stephanie’s bridesmaids all looked stunning in their green dresses and of course, she was a standout in her beautiful lace wedding gown. I like how excited she looks just an hour or so before her wedding.

    Every couple hopes for this type of weather on their wedding day.  Stephanie and Scott picked an absolutely perfect day.  When I took this photo, all of the guests had entered and Stephanie and her bridesmaids were just about to arrive.

    Always composed, Doug keeps a calm look as he watches Stephanie walk down the aisle, while the officiant and groomsmen cannot contain their excitement.

    Stephanie and Doug had a hand binding ceremony to officially join them together. Is this where the phrase “Tie the knot,” comes from?

    I love the genuine smiles from Stephanie and her bridesmaids as she is about to officially be married.

    The bridal party looking good in front of King’s Riding Golf Club.

    We had some fun asking the girls to primp up Doug so he would look his best for Stephanie. He didn’t seem to mind.

    I always love the photos of two families joining together on a wedding day.

    One of my favourite parts of the day was when we were asked if we wanted to take photos on the golf course and somebody let us drive our own golf carts to get there.  I loved the photo locations and I also loved driving the cart!

    The moments just before and after a kiss are even better to photograph (in my opinion) than the actual kiss.

    The only way for a bride to see the back of her dress is for someone to take a photo of it.  We made sure we did that at Stephanie’s wedding!

    Rolling hills, back lighting, a stunning bride in a beautiful gown, fantastic weather, what more can you ask for?

    We let them pretend we weren’t around for a few minutes.

    Happy couple, nose to nose, romantic photos, backlit photos, beautiful couple, bride and groom, groom in kilt, lace dress, Rabbat Photography, wedding photos at King's Riding golf club, King riding, photos on golf course, romantics, playful

    The emcees had a lot of fun. They met Stephanie in kindergarten!  I love that they had so many friends they had known for a very long time at their wedding.

    They did their first dance right after they entered. Don’t you love how the cake has a tartan that matches Doug’s kilt? The figure on top of the cake matches Stephanie and Doug quite well too!

    The right girl caught the bouquet, because she seems pretty happy.  Feel free to call me when you get engaged!

    Ditto for the groomsman who caught the bouquet. He made an effort and succeeded!

    You know it’s time to party when the animal bandanas come out.

    Congratulations on a fantastic wedding day, Stephanie and Doug!  Thanks for allowing me to follow along in your romance from your engagement session to  your wedding day.  It was all perfect, “until the very end,” (to quote James Potter).  Enjoy Disney and please post lost of pictures and let me know how you like The Wizarding World of Harry Potter at Universal Studios!  Thank you so much for having Sarah and I there to document all these precious moments (and many more).

    I wish you many magical moments in the future.

     

     

     

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  • Engagement Party Photos at the Lebovic Centre

    Alana’s mom called me to see if I was available to photograph her upcoming engagement party and shortly after we spoke, I had the pleasure of speaking with Alana, who seemed extremely friendly and easygoing. I knew this was going to be a fun event by the way her personality shone through over the phone. The event was coming up quite quickly, so I didn’t get the chance to meet with her or Lee until the morning of the event, but when I walked in, everyone was so welcoming I felt like we had met before.

    We started the morning with some family photos, before the majority of the guests arrived. They were all suprisingly calm considering over 100 guests were scheduled to start arrriving shortly after I did.  

    The tables were not empty for long.

    We went outside for a few minutes and took some photos of Alana and Lee together. Don’t you love the dress she chose for her engagement party and photos?

    Alana’s family, including her sister and brother-in-law automatically linked arms and told me they were a ‘huggy’ family.  I love it when families tell me that because it looks so much better in photos than when people are afraid to touch.

    Lee’s family was also very friendly and close-knit. His grandmother is in her 90s and still in excellent shape!

    There is a definite family resemblance between Alana, her mom and her sister.

    There is also a definite resemblance between Lee’s mom and grandma.

    I witnessed a lot of heartfelt hugs as the guests trickled in.

    People are very excited for Alana and Lee’s wedding!

    They had an awesome lunch time food spread.

    Mazel Tov, Alana and Lee!

    Thanks so much for having me there to photograph your engagement party, Alana and Lee!
    It was such an honour and you really took the time and effort to make sure every single person there felt welcome (which shows in the photos!). Remember to take time to eat at your wedding!

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  • Yulia and Scott’s Wedding at King Valley Golf Club

    I met Yulia and Scott over a year ago, when they first came to inquire about wedding photography and I loved their story of how they met in high school.  They have been together since grade 9!  It is now 15 years later. They have lived together for 3 years and they finally, finally got married this year.  I knew this wedding would mean a lot to a lot of people who anxiously waited for this very special day.  I imagined a beautiful wedding day for them and it surpassed even my high expectations.

    Here is Yulia’s high school grad photo, since of course, she and Scott were dating even back then.  I thought it would also be meaningful to get a photo with her mom when her mom was around her age.

    Bride past and present

    I already knew there would be many emotions at this wedding after all these years, which is definitely something I hope for as a photographer.  I also knew they were getting married at King Valley Golf Club, one of my favourite wedding venues. I couldn’t have predicted the perfect weather, that everything would run precisely on time and the post ceremony photos would take place at 6:00PM, which happens to have gorgeous light on beautiful days like theirs.

    I arrived at Yulia’s childhood home just before she was going to put on the dress.  Sarah, my associate photographer, arrived where Scott was getting ready at the same time.

    Bride coming down stairs

    Yulia apparently changed the beers to say Ukrainian instead of Canadian before they were handed out to people as Scott got ready for the ceremony.

    Portrait of Groom and beer detail

    When we arrived at the venue, there was actually time before the ceremony to photograph the details inside from the turquoise and white table cloths to the cookies lovingly made by the bridesmaids, Yulia and Yulia’s mom as bonbonnieres.  There was also time to take more photos of the bridesmaids and groomsmen.

    Bridesmaid and groomsmen

    Aqua and white table settings at King Valley Golf Club

    Bridal Table at King Valley Golf Club

    The ceremony took place outdoors under a chuppah with Robb McDonald officiating.  When things got a little emotional (in a good way) during the vows, he helped out.

    Bride walking down the aisle with both parents

    Wedding ceremony under huppah at King Valley Golf Club

    Wedding Ceremony

    Wedding Ceremony signing at King Valley Golf Club

    As you can see from the photos of their parents, they were thrilled with this union.  Judging from the speeches, Scott’s parents already felt like Yulia was their daugther-in-law and Yulia’s parents felt the same way. Now it is finally official!

    Parents after ceremony at King Valley Golf Club

    We only had one hour between the ceremony and reception to take the family, bridal party and romantic photos.  That was totally fine, because everything went perfectly and it didn’t even feel rushed.  I also love family photos that take place after late ceremonies (theirs was at 5:30), because the light is really nice in the early evening in the summer.

    Wedding day family photo with both sets of parents

    Bridal party photo at King Valley Golf Club

    Groom dipping bride

    Wedding Photos at King Valley Golf Club

    Bride and groom on golf course at King Valley Golf Club

    When Yulia and Scott entered the golf club for their reception, they danced the Hora right away.  I love the hora, especially when the couple is hoisted onto chairs and people lift them up and down. Even though many of the guests had not danced the hora before, they were all very excited to get in on the fun.  They transitioned into the first dance and father-daughter, mother-son dances and cut the cake immediately after that.

    Hora dance at King Valley Golf Club

    First dance wedding photo at King Valley Golf Club

    Father-daughter dance and mother-son dance photos at King Valley Golf Club

    Cake cutting at King Valley Golf Club

    Speeches took place during dinner. Amazingly, they had 9 speeches, but the catering manager approached me to say how he was super impressed because dinner only took an hour and 15 minutes.  That meant Yulia and Scott had more time to party and be with their guests and of course, when the sweets and late night buffet tables came out, enough time had passed since people had eaten that they were ready to eat again.
    Kissing game win

    Bride and groom laughing

    We stepped outside for a couple of minutes to take these photos at night, while it was still light enough to see the clouds.

    Night time romantic photo at King Valley Golf Club

    Romantic night photo at King Valley Golf Club

    The bouquet toss had a humourous moment when it went straight up and did not land.  Turns out it did land…into the chandelier!  Some people helped get it out and she tossed it again, to one very happy lady.

    Bouquet in Chandelier

    Bridal bouquet toss, take 2.

    Bouquet toss at King Valley Golf Club

    Bride with bouquet toss winner

    The dance floor filled up and the party continued.

    Wedding reception photos

    Yulia’s parents got into the dancing.

    Dancing to Rasputin

    May the next 60 or so years be as wonderful as the first 15, Yulia and Scott! If your wedding is anything to go by, you have a fantastic future ahead. Thanks again for having us photograph your wedding.  My heart is full.

     

    Vendors:

    Limo company – EVK Limousine Service
    Dress Designer – Nicole Spose
    DJ – Maxim Music
    Makeup artist – Alisa Rybalko
    Cake and donuts: Artsy Baker
    Officiant: Robb McDonald 
    Shoe designer – Betsey Johnson
    Rings – Diamond Design

    Wedding favours (succulents) – Urban Gardens 
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  • Headshots in the Studio | Toronto and Etobicoke headshot photographer

    I was honoured when Belinda came to me for her headshot.

    I love photographing headshots because it is really fun to help people feel comfortable in front of the camera.

    I also love hearing that someone whose photo I took for LinkedIn helped them get that interview or that job.  Professional images show a person values themselves, which in turn makes interviewers and companies more likely to invest in hiring them.

    Belinda Headshot

    Belinda Headshot

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  • Skating Engagement Photos at Colonel Sam Smith Park | Toronto Wedding Photographer

    Doug is teaching Stephanie how to skate, so they decided they wanted to do their engagement photos in the winter, on a skating rink.

    We chose Colonel Sam Smith Park in Etobicoke, because it is a picturesque skating figure 8, it is refrigerated (so we knew there would ice) and there is a beach area close by to offer us a variety of ‘looks.’

    Doug has been doing a fantastic job teaching Stephanie, because she stayed on her feet the whole time. More importantly, they looked they were having a great time on the ice.

    Skating help

    Skating Engagement Photos

    Skating lift

    Love skating

    We went inside to warm up and decided to take advantage of this area. It looks a little like a school and Stephanie is a teacher and of course, the water fountain is prominent and Doug is a plumber, so we incorporated both their professions in this photo.

    Kiss

    Doug and Stephanie

    Engagement photos in front of historic building

    I asked them to bring their favourite book, since they both like reading.  Doug brought Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince and Stephanie brought The Notebook.

    Reading Harry Potter on the beach

    Reading on the beach

    Wide angle on the beach

    We went back to where we started for a few more photos.

    Engagement photos

    Congratulations again on your engagement! I can’t wait to photograph your wedding!

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  • Happy Valentine’s Day!

    Our eldest daughter turned 9 today. We always try to get a photo of the girls for Valentine’s Day.
    Valentine's Day

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  • Family Portraits at James Gardens | Etobicoke Family Portraits

    My associates Janette and Sarah photographed Joanna and Alain’s wedding many years ago. Now, they have two little girls and I was honoured to be able to do their family portraits this fall.  We did them at James Gardens, which has become one of my favourite locations recently, since it has so many great natural backgrounds, fantastic light and it has not been too crowded.  This photo session also involved Joanna’s brother’s family and her parents. I love when families get organized and get together for family portrait sessions, since it is really nice to have photos with grandparents and cousins in addition to siblings and parents.

    These are all the grandchildren.

    5 adorable kids at James Gardens

    This is the entire extended family.  Family portraits look so much better when everyone wears similar colours.

    Extended Family at James Gardens

    Armstrong family on the left and Miron family on the right.  I love it when babies laugh for photos!

    Armstrong and Miron Families at James Gardens

    Looks like these sisters will grow up to be fantastic friends. The baby was always smiling at her big sister.

    Family of 4 at James Gardens

    We got the little one engaged by having her play with leaves.  It was her first time doing that and once she got the hang of throwing them in the air, she had a great time!

    Family of 5

    Happy grandparents.

    Grandparents with 5 kids

    Another photo with the whole family.

    Family in Forest at James Gardens

    We saw an ice cream truck before the photo session began and they were promised treats afterwards if it was still there and they cooperated.

    Boy with slushie

    Girls eating a slushie

    She tried to get the baby to taste the slushie, but the baby was not interested at all, (which is of course, probably a good thing)!

    Little kids eating slushies

    Thanks for having me photograph your beautiful family, Joanna and Alain!  It was really great meeting everyone and seeing many of you again.

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  • Family portraits with two daughters and a dog at James Gardens | Etobicoke Family Portrait Photographer

    I had the pleasure of photographing Polina and Andrei’s wedding many years ago and I was happy to see them at Anna and Michael’s Wedding (of course, Andrei is Anna’s sister, so I did expect to see them there!). It was there that I also learned Polina was expecting her second. She contacted me soon after and wanted to know the best time for family portraits. My favourite time is when the baby is around 6 months old, so they patiently waited and their youngest daughter’s 6 month ‘birthday’ coincided with the start of fall, which is of course, a beautiful time for photos.

    We started off on the bridge overlooking the duck pond at James Gardens.  Both 3 year old Maya and the dog were very interested in the ducks.  I like how the dog is peeking through the bridge in this photo.

    Family Portraits on a bridge in James Gardens with Ducks

    I always love how babies enjoy being carried by their dads.

    Baby being carried by daddy

    I also love how babies look at their moms.

    Mom and 6 month old at James gardens

    By around age 3, they become quite camera aware.

    Mother and 3 year old daughter

    Happy mom, happy daughters.

    Mom with 3 year old and 6 month old daughters

    We got photobombed by dogs!

    4 person family portrait at James Gardens with dog photobombers

    No dogs in this one.  Nice, happy family.

    Fall family portrait at James Gardens

    This is probably what life is really like most of the time.

    Fun family portrait at James Gardens

    I love how Maya is holding Zoe’s hand and Zoe is happy that she took this action.  These sisters are already starting to have a great relationship!

    4 person and 1 dog family at James Gardens

    I like to ask little ones to play in the leaves.  Maya hadn’t done it before, so we instructed her and she got very into it.

    3 year old playing in the leaves

    I love it when siblings bond. Zoe is perfectly content with her big sister and her big sister is very interested in her.

    Young sisters bonding

    We managed to get a few minutes of quiet time while my assistant made sure the kids and dog stayed safe, so that Andrei and Polina could have a few quiet moments together.

    Mom an dad enjoying some time with each other

    Couple in love

    It was so great meeting your sweet and adorable children and dog, Andrei and Polina! Thank you for having me back to photograph your family.

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  • Scarborough Bluffs Engagement Photos | Toronto Wedding Photographer

    Yulia and Scott came to my studio in the summer and told me they met and started dating in high school! Now, they are (finally) getting married! Woohoo!!!!!

    They suggested the Scarborough Bluffs for their engagement photos. I had never even been to the Bluffs, let alone photographed anyone there, so I was glad they suggested it.  Considering how these photos turned out, I am now wondering how it is possible that it was my first time there when I have been photographing weddings for 15 years?! Thank you so much for introducing me to this beautiful (new to me) location, Yulia and Scott!

    We also got extremely lucky, because it rained all day, but it stopped right before we started the session and continued shortly after we finished the session.
    Can you believe this is Ontario?

    Engagement Photo at the Scarborough Bluffs

    Engagement Photos at the Scarborough Bluffs

    I love that Scott and Yulia were game to try anything for the photo.  They took off their shoes and had a laugh on the beach.

    Engagement photos on the beach

    Engagement photos with rim lighting

    We walked across this area on the way to the Bluffs and I thought it was perfect for an engagement photo.

    Pond engagement photos at the Scarborough Bluffs

    It’s a real Canadian engagement session with hockey jerseys on.  We all loved the willow tree too.

    Engagement photos under a willow tree

    Engaged couple kissing in front of a Willow Tree

    Laughing together at the Bluffs

    Happy couple at the Scarborough Bluffs

    Happy together

    I love how excited they are to be with each other!  Congrats again on your engagement, Yulia and Scott! I can’t wait to photograph your wedding at King Riding Golf Club next year!

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