Friday, April 25, 2014

Jacqueline & Ted's Casually Romantic Tie-the-Knot Brunch :)

Jacqueline & I go way back - I've been her commercial photographer for almost a decade and we've shot everything from socks to quilts (and of course many pretty Soak bottles!) together. Jacqueline and Ted go even further back (11 years, 4 months, and 6 days - but who's counting?), so I know that I wasn't the only one who's been eagerly anticipating this day for - literally - years. In keeping with their desire for a wedding that felt more like having their closest friends and family over for brunch, they chose their favourite spot for brunch and relaxing - the SoHo House in downtown Toronto. The venue was gorgeous, and fit their day perfectly. Jacqueline glowed, and did so much smiling that I'm sure her cheeks were sore most of the day. Ted kept looking at her like he'd found the best prize ever. But I think my favourite part was how surprised they both seemed to be - repeatedly! - that they were actually at their own wedding. Yes, it's true: you guys are really married now :) And to prove it, here are some of my favourite details and moments from your excellent day..

I loved the "Table 1" signs and place cards, especially since everyone sat together at one long table ;)
All the millions of stunning tulips were arranged by Ted's daughter Ashley (below) and Jacqueline's sister Michelle..  

one of the best things about having creative friends - Jacqueline's sewing buddy Katrina made this beautiful ring quilt :)
I absolutely loved that Jacqueline had a lace hanky to dab at those tears of joy! 

For the signing of the registry, Ted picked "It's the End of the World as We Know It" by R.E.M. to play in the background - if you know Ted, this won't surprise you. And it also won't surprise you that he pointed out the important part of the lyric was the "I Feel Fine" ;)
 I love this image of  Michelle (below) checking out the bride's ring :)

 Jacqueline has been saving these shoes for 20 years, until she had just the right occasion to wear them (I'd say this was it!)

Michelle surprised the newlyweds with these lovely (and delicious!) cookies from Mad Batter Bakers for all the guests to enjoy :) And speaking of delicious, check out some of this gorgeous brunch spread..
 I love a good bit of photo booth fun!
{special thanks to Paper Studio for providing the lip & moustache props!}
Ted had the best cuffs ever on his shirt!
 good times behind the bar - Jacqueline pulled a pint for Ted, and also got a fancy cocktail mixed especially for her :) They also got to meet their Chef for the day - the Head Chef of SoHo House :)
Jacqueline & Ted: you two had a wedding day that was perfect in so many ways, but most importantly was perfectly suited to the two of you.. may you have many years of gorgeous yummy brunches, and many more occasions to relax with each other and the ones you love :) Thank you so much for having us there to be part of your day, and capture the proof for all to see ;)

Jessica + Norman

{I absolutely *love* photographing non-traditional and alternative weddings - if you've got one in your future, please get in touch!}

Venue: SoHo House, Toronto
Jacqueline's ring: Erin Tracy Designs
Jacqueline & Ashley's fascinators: Suzanne from Atelier Six Degrees
Cookies: Mad Batter Bakers
Invitations: Jacqueline
Photo booth props: Paper Studio

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Ben Becomes a Big Brother to Baby Sam :)

I swear - it seems like just a few months back that we were photographing Jane & Ned's wedding.. and then just a few day ago that we were there to capture their new baby, Ben, at 7 days old - but time flies; Ben is now 2 1/2 years old (!), and has just become a big brother to tiny new baby Sam :) It was amazing to see the whole family, and to be able to capture this newest stage in their history..
the only thing cuter than little nursery things is little baby toes!
 as you can see, Ben is auditioning for the role of "photographer's assistant" with his 
chicken puppet skills below ;)
This was my favourite - Ben has been a big brother for all of 10 days, and he's already an expert at soothing baby Sam.. first some gentle "shh-ing", then a nice pat on the head, and finally a kiss to make it all better :D I also love that I took pictures of his mom & dad doing all these things for him when he was that size :)
 This final images matches perfectly with one we did of Ned holding Ben when he was the newborn baby in the house :)

Jane & Ned - it was such a pleasure to photograph your family again! What a joy it is to see the little boy that Ben has become, and we loved meeting baby Sam :) And - as always - thanks for the yummy sandwiches!

Jessica + Norman

{if you're expecting a tiny new addition to your own family and would love gorgeous maternity and newborn portraits of your own - email us now for more information! We also do gift certificates and registry - inquire for details!}

Monday, April 14, 2014

Baby On The Way - Sarah & Mike's Family Maternity Session :)

I love it when this happens - I first met Sarah & Mike 7 years ago when they were starting to plan their wedding. We photographed their engagement session in High Park in the spring, and their beautiful lake-side wedding that fall. 
A few years passed. They bought a house. They called again - they were expecting their first baby :) Cameron was one of the first babies I photographed, and we captured all the excitement and changes of his first year in 5 sessions spread out throughout the first 12 months. From his newborn session at just a week old, to his first birthday party with rainbow cupcakes, we had so much fun getting to know this little guy!
And now - he's about to become a big brother :) 

He's been reading up on learning to share, but only time will tell if that lesson extends as far as his Thomas trains.. 
Sarah is a star with knitting needles, and finished this amazing sweater for Cameron just in time for our session - thankfully he was eventually talked into wearing it when he found out it was a special "big brother" sweater ;) {check out those elbow patches - love it!}
Sarah & Mike - the next time we see your family, there will be four hands in the stack :D I can't wait to meet Cameron's tiny new brother next month!

Jessica + Norman (+ the Chicken puppet ;) )

{if you're expecting a tiny new addition to your own family and would love gorgeous maternity and newborn portraits of your own - email us now for more information! We also do gift certificates and registry - inquire for details!}

Friday, April 11, 2014

Lauren & Michael's Gorgeous Beach Wedding in Panama (part 3 - evening)

Last month, Emily and I went to Panama to photograph and film one of the most amazing couples and their beautiful wedding :) You definitely don't want to miss out on the pre-wedding fun earlier in the week, or the stunning ceremony on the beach if you haven't already seen them!
Once the sun started to go down, family and friends gathered at their tables around a dance floor made of sand, and settled in for an evening of pure magic :) In case you think I'm exaggerating, have a look through some of the highlights of the night and I promise you'll agree..
I think maybe all first dance locations should be framed by palm trees :) 
I've never seen a dance floor fill up so instantly and enthusiastically! 
I loved how Lauren's maid of honour (her sister Vanessa) told about the bride's tendency towards accidents, but said the best and biggest fall of all was when she fell for Michael :) {yes - I'm a total romantic sap, but I love knowing that I'm not the only one!}
the Panama canvas filling up with signatures, and the Sasquatch feet make an appearance on the dance floor.. 
 So if right now you're thinking "wow - what a beautiful day Lauren & Michael had!", then you'd better do two things: 1. Click here and listen to this song in the background (this was actually playing during some of the moments below), and 2. imagine being on a beach at your favourite restaurant, with 70 of your family members and friends.. It's totally dark, the weather is perfect, you can hear the ocean.. And then one by one, these fiery globes start glowing around you, and then floating up over the water.. magic :)

This was truly one of those moments when you feel like you're a part of something that has made your heart just a bit fuller than it was before.. When you realize you're standing in what feels like the middle of eternity, and it's beautiful.. 
Lauren & Michael - I can't thank you enough for not only allowing us to be a part of your amazing adventure, but for being so incredibly lovely to be around throughout it all! We wish you a lifetime of the kind of love that we saw you surrounded by on your wedding day, and may all the wishes on all those Chinese lanterns come true :)


{Adventure and Romance are my two favourite things :) If you've got a destination wedding adventure in your future, please get in touch!}

Photography (stills and film): Jessica + Emily, Jessica Lin Photography

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Lauren + Michael's Romantic Paradise Beach Wedding in Panama (pt.2)

In case you missed the beginning of this story, Emily and I were fortunate enough to spend a week in Panama with some of the nicest people I've ever met :) Lauren + Michael are Canadians who've been living in Panama for a few years now, so it was only natural for them to get married on a beach in the paradise they've adopted as their home. Unlike most destination weddings - where the "destination" is far from home for the couple getting married - they had the wonderful opportunity to get married at their favourite restaurant on the beach, Pipa's.
The whole week was full of fun and gorgeous photographs waiting to happen, but as I've been going through those many many images it's struck me that what made the week - and especially the wedding day - so amazing and beautiful wasn't all the palm trees, sand, surf, hammocks, wildlife, or even piƱa coladas.. it was the 50 or so guests that flew down from Canada, and the additional 20 friends from other neighbouring countries who flew in to celebrate with Lauren + Michael. And after knowing the couple for only a few hours, I could see why 70 people would get on planes to be with them as they took this step into the future together. Warm, gracious, and thoughtful are a few of the words that come to mind when thinking of these two, and that's what set the tone for their wedding week. They have an easy sense of fun, and didn't seem to get stressed out about anything, even when about half the guests ended up getting sick throughout the week (including the two of them). And - best of all - they are totally, sentimentally, very romantically, in love with each other :)
Anyways, without further ado, here are some of my favourite images and moments from Lauren + Michael's beautiful wedding day..

One of the things I loved best about Lauren + Michael were the sentimental details.. they each had a surprise gift custom-made by the same jewellery designer who made their rings - Michael gave Lauren a heart necklace that contains a sound wave from part of their first dance song, and Lauren gave Michael a tie clip that was engraved with the coordinates and dates of their two wedding ceremonies (this one in Panama, and their upcoming one in Canada this summer) - how sweet are they?!
best shot glasses EVER ;) 

Lauren's hair piece was made with lace from her mother's wedding gown, which was also used to trim the neckline of Lauren's gown :)
The Sasquatch feet have a long history, and also showed up in Lauren + Michael's engagement photos (along with the rest of the Sasquatch suit!), so it seemed only appropriate for Lauren to be wearing them the morning of the wedding!
Lauren is a woman of many creative talents, and she made beautiful necklaces for her bridesmaids and for her Mom :)

I love this shot of Lauren and her two beautiful sisters :) 

When guests arrived at Pipa's for the wedding, they were greeted with not only a beautiful setting, but tonnes of personal details.. There was a canvas printed with a map of Panama for guests to sign, homemade hot sauce for everyone to take home, and lots of photographs to share memories of 
Lauren + Michael's adventures together, as well as some classic family photos..

Another great personal touch - the ceremony was performed by Lauren + Michael's friend Sava :) 


Originally I'd said I was planning to do this sneak peek as a two-parter, but there were just too many gorgeous details and moments! So stay tuned and I'll share some images from the fantastic evening that followed, including the amazing Chinese lanterns..!


{We love to travel! If you've got a destination wedding in your future, please get in touch!}

custom jewellery: Apa Design
photography (stills and film): Jessica and Emily, Jessica Lin Photography