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Upload from July 14, 2011

laurenandrob200x.jpgWe’re Rob + Lauren, and we’re super excited that you’re here! We’re a portrait photography team from Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. We love shooting happy portraits of super fun people. Families, newborns, couples, and individual folks—we adore it all. 

***Take a moment, and check out the details on how we can create happy portraits of the people you love***

*Scroll past this post to see all the new awesomeness!*

Walk to Remember

Next Saturday, October 2 marks the third annual Walk to Remember taking place here in Edmonton at the Legislative Grounds.

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It might not be an event that you have heard of, but it’s certainly one you should know of.

When we photograph people we often get to know a lot about them. When we photographed Jocelyn & Chris we learned a lot about them, from what they do together for fun, to the TV shows they love, and how they make their living (very very talented web/graphic designers). We also learned that they have had some sadness in their life, but most importantly, that they’ve been moved to work very hard to help others deal with that same sadness in their own lives.

I’m talking about pregnancy and baby loss. It’s a very common thing, affecting 15,000 babies each year in Alberta alone. And yet it’s not talked about. I had no idea how very common it is until I had friends who were mothers, and until it happened to someone very close to Rob and me. Then our eyes were opened. This is something big.

What was more important to learn was just how painful such a loss is. It’s something I didn’t understand at all. I think it’s said best on the website:

Each of these babies changed lives and touched hearts. Each lives on inside a mother, a father, a sibling or a grandparent. And each left a profound emotional legacy that can be difficult for other people to understand if they haven’t experienced baby loss themselves.”

Walk to Remember exists to help those affected by pregnancy and baby loss celebrate and honor the little ones who left too soon. It also has been incredibly successful in raising funds to support grieving parents. 

Like any charity, they rely on the generosity of others. And I really wanted to let you all know about this event because I truly believe it’s wonderful. Jocelyn and Chris give all of themselves to this event, and have done so much to help so so so many. 

Rob and I will be there at the walk shooting. I really encourage you to check out their very beautiful website and see how you might be able to help. Donations of any amount help tremendously, and they also have a teddy bear drive during the walk.

We have been so lucky to have met so many beautiful babies and their adoring families as photographers, it is devastating to think of all those that never had a chance to enjoy the family that loved them so much. 

Ashley & Mark // Wedding

Well, here it is. THE wedding. The one that is both our last official wedding for the foreseeable future, as well as the one that shares our own first anniversary. It was a big day. 

It was also an awesome day. Sure, it was exceptionally chilly, but there was so much happiness flying around it didn’t seem to matter too much. And Ashley and Mark, well, they are just wonderful. Let’s take a look at the photos shall we? Then you’ll know just what I mean.

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This was the show stealer: the ring bearer! He was admittedly much more interested in drawing lines on the ground with his toes, but was also kind enough to stand for a portrait as well :)

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Their beautiful ceremony took place at the Devonian Botanical Gardens, a classic local wedding venue. Oddly enough, it was our very first time ever shooting there. Go figure!

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Then the reception at the River Cree Resort. I’m pretty certain everyone walking into the room either gasped or fainted ;) Just jokes, of course, but it was truly stunning. The team at Nuance Occasions never fails to impress, no matter how many receptions we’ve seen.

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And a bit of first dance…

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And the rings to truly finish this off like a wedding.

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My, my. What a day. As I mentioned, it was chilly. Really chilly. We were decked out in many layers and mittens, but these poor folks had to look good, so they were without such necessary accessories.

However, if you’ll look closely, you’ll see an awful lot of smiling going on. It’s quite strange, actually…

I suppose it has to do with the fact that Ashley and Mark are crazy lovely. Laid back hardly begins to describe them. They were there to enjoy each other, and their friends and family, and whatever happened, happened. They are also the kind of people that are always looking out for everyone around them. Mark kept thanking us all day, when I would expect him to curse us for keeping them out in the cold!

I’ll share a quick version of their story, since I think it really sums up their relationship.

Many years ago Ashley and her family travelled to Camrose to visit friends. These friends had a son, and that son had a friend: Mark. Mark came over and it was love at first sight. However, Ashley and her family returned home to Edmonton.

But for years they kept hearing of this Mark fellow, and how much he liked Ashley. As in, for 10 years.

Then finally the stars aligned, and Ashley’s family was invited to Camrose for a wedding. Mark inquired if Ashley would be coming along. She did, they found each other, and though 10 years had passed they still had that spark.

And they’ve been together ever since. And now they’re married.

Yep, they really are that wonderful. And we were truly happy to share our anniversary with them. 

Ashley & Mark, thank you. You might not know this, but we don’t like the cold. In fact, we hate the cold. But we were so happy to be shooting with you two that we didn’t even feel it. Well, not until we went back to our car and suddenly realized we were frozen solid. :)

Tons of love,

Lauren :)

Amanda & Richard // Portraits

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It seems quite appropriate to blog this session right now! You see, about two seconds after the image with the cat in it was taken (are you scrolling back up to find the cat?) there was an instant downpour. We all ran for cover and spent a good 45 min shooting under a shelter on the farm as the rain fell relentlessly. But we stuck it out, looked for light, and just had some fun. 

Then, wouldn’t you know it, the sun came out, and we were treating to absolutely gorgeous sunlight for the rest of the session.

This past week Edmonton seemed to have Vancouver weather. Grey, rainy, ick. We were definitely feeling the effects of a lack of vitamin D. We in Edmonton aren’t tough enough for constant dreariness. With a bit of patience though, the sun always comes out. As I write this I can look behind me and see Scooter lazing in a sunbeam. Hello sunshine!

P.S. That’s also a metaphor for life.

Alright, let’s move on.

Amanda and Richard are so wonderful. Many times after we shoot a wonderful couple there is bit of sadness, in that we don’t get to hang out with them anymore. Luckily we are actually related to these two!! Richard is the brother of Rob’s sister’s husband. Got that? 

In extra excitement, Rob’s sister had a baby a week ago! Yay! Not only does this make us an aunt and an uncle, but it makes Richard and Amanda an aunt and an uncle. And between the four of us we represent the entirety of aunt & unclehood for little Anika. Neato.

Beyond all that, though, Richard and Amanda are awesome in their own right. Fellow foodies, easy going, and just love to have fun together. Our kind of people! 

We shot this session on Amanda’s parents’ farm, a place she spent a good portion of her childhood. We were all very happy to share in the nostalgia with her, and use the space for some beautiful images. These two did an amazing job, and these results were truly a collaboration. Thanks so much you two for the amazing night! We’re very proud to be co-aunts & co-uncles with you!

Lauren :)

Home Again

Y’know, I can’t remember the last time Rob and I took a proper vacation. Whenever we travel we work pretty hard to photograph our destination, and blog, and deal with emails, and spend a lot of time figuring out where to go next and how to get there, etc. and so on. We come home quite tired, and need some time to recover. But on this trip we did things differently. Our cameras only came out a couple times, and we mostly just focused on enjoying ourselves and relaxing. It was wonderful!

PEI is a magical place. It truly is. 90% of my family lives there, so I’ve been many times. But going this time was like a new experience because Rob was with me, and it was his first taste of the East Coast. I won’t go on too much, except to say that if you ever are looking for a great travel destination, PEI is tops. We can’t wait to get back there!! Next time we will certainly be spending more time photographing the island, because it is stunningly beautiful.

For now, here are a few quick snaps from North Lake Harbour, where an enormous amount of tuna fishing goes on. This tuna is sent all over the world, including to Japan for sushi. 

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More blog fun to come soon! Have an awesome day my friends!

Lauren :)

Away We Go!

Hello!

So today Rob and I are off on an adventure! Hoorah!

We are going on a roadtrip right across Canada! All the way to Prince Edward Island. Nearly 5,000km. 

My parents just recently retired back there, and nearly my entire family lives there, so it’s time Rob met them all! The trip is going to be one week of driving, one week of visiting, and then flying home. I couldn’t think of a more perfect roadtrip! It’s going to be an incredible time, I already know it :)

We might get a chance to update this blog, not quite sure yet! But if you want to follow along you can either friend me on Facebook or follow me on Twitter. I should be posting a fair bit there, and possibly asking for advice along the way! :) We have no plans at all, no schedule, and no route. That’s what I call an adventure!!!!

Hope you all have a wonderful weekend!

Tons of love,

Lauren :)

Jeremy & Ida // Portraits

Morning friends! Man, I can’t even describe the past couple days. We just finished up holding a workshop through Photography Concentrate, and it was incredible. The photographers we met and connected with were truly amazing people, and to share our insane love of photography with them was the best thing we could have asked for. So I’m already in this slightly emotional state of mind, and now I’m sitting down to write this post. This could get mushy :)

You may remember the portraits we took of the Wiens Family; an absolutely beautiful group of people full of love, and undergoing some challenges in life with their little boy, Kortlandt. He is still fighting, and we saw him running around Ronald McDonald House at our last visit.

Well, that shoot really really inspired us. Not just inspired us, but motivated us to do more. So we met up with Jessica, the amazing Fund Development Officer at the House, to chat about how we could be involved more. We said that we wanted to try to shoot a family every month, and now that’s exactly what we’re doing! I can’t even begin to thank Jessica and all the other employees at the House. They have been working hard to make this project happen, and we are truly truly honoured to be working with such an amazing organization. More and more we’re seeing that great things can happen when you team up with people who love what they do!

So this month we shot Jeremy and Ida. And wow. Wow wow wow. This was an experience for us, and I’m positive we came away profoundly changed. 

Sadly, Jeremy suffers from an inoperable brain tumor that is causing increasingly frequent seizures. He is the only child of Ida. And they had never had a “good” photo taken of the two of them. I can’t tell you how happy we were to be able to do that for them.

You see, despite the sadness of their situation, they are so filled with love that it knocked me backwards. Jeremy was quite shy, and didn’t want to look at the camera too much, but that didn’t stop him from telling his mother that he loved her. All the time. They shared butterfly kisses, belly laughs, looked at clouds, and just enjoyed spending time with each other. It was truly powerful to sit two feet away and watch them, and really be drawn in by the connection they share. (I told you it was going to get mushy :) But I’m totally serious, when you’re that close, you really do feel it.)

I hope by looking at these images you’ll know just what I mean.

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Looking at the clouds.

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We found a heart.

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And a galaxy.

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We used our Fuji Instax to take a couple photos for them. The effect those simple photos had was really incredible. We found the same when we traveled in Peru. Digital cameras are fun, and showing people the images on the back is great, but it can’t replace the tangible feeling of holding a photo in your hand. We took a shot of them, then let Jeremy watch it develop. He very quietly whispered “Magic” and my heart exploded. Photography IS magic. 

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Then Rob got Jeremy to shoot a photo of his mom. I hear the entire House has seen these Instants, he is really quite proud of them.

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We also got to chat with Ida a bit after the shoot, and hear about what Ronald McDonald House means to her. It’s not a house, it’s a home for them in a very difficult time. She doesn’t have to worry about anything except Jeremy, and I can’t even begin to imagine how valuable that is. So if you feel like giving, Ronald McDonald House is truly an amazing organization.

Lauren :)

Anne-Marie, Travis & Maggie // Portraits

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Anne-Marie was the winner of a gift certificate that we donated to the fantastic #yeghelp fundraiser. We were very excited to meet her, and her fiance Travis, and take some fun portraits of them! It was a bonus to have Maggie, their adorable Sheltie, come along.

We admittedly get a bit too excited when pets are part of the shoot, and they usually have their own little separate portrait session with Rob! But, like our cat Scooter, Maggie is absolutely a part of this gorgeous family, and it was really wonderful to get some shots of her. We’re pretty pumped that the image of her and Anne-Marie snuggling will be going up on their wall! There’s a certain photo of us with Scooter that I should really print out to go on our wall…..

I’m getting distracted thinking about animals! As you can see, the people in this shoot were drop dead gorgeous, and fun and fascinating to boot! They are both musicians, and I’m sure you can guess what instrument Travis plays :) Anne-Marie is a classically trained singer (WOW!), which, while insanely impressive, isn’t quite as photographable as this gorgeous upright bass.

Travis is a “freelance bass player” and travels around the world touring with different artists. You should ask him some time about the food he ate in China, he completely wins the “weird stuff I’ve eaten” game! Apparently bumblebees and lotus petals are quite delicious! 

Annie-Marie has such incredible eyes, and such a fun personality that she was an absolute joy to photograph! And together they are full of laughs and happiness. 

You also might notice that we took quite a few photos of Travis and his bass, as well as the bass alone. We don’t really ever get to shoot musicians, so when we meet one with an instrument that could be considered a work of art itself, well, we just can’t help ourselves :)

Have a wonderful wedding, you guys. Knowing you two, it’s going to be a blast!

Lauren :)

The Lyons Family // Jumping

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These guys are a whirlwind of energy. I don’t know if I’ve ever met a more multi-talented and high flying group of kids!

Their mom asked us to get some shots of the kids, with a few family ones thrown in. Sounds good to me! I love just shooting kids being kids. And the bonus was that three of these four are quite talented at gymnastics, and the fourth loves to follow them around!

It’s almost a bit sad to see how incredible kids are when it comes to being active. They completely wore us out, and were still going strong! Jumping, handstands, cartwheels, back-walkovers, the splits; so many things I wish I could do, and would literally break something if I tried. There’s so much to learn from kids, isn’t there?

A really neat part of this experience was during the ordering session. Hallie, the oldest girl, came along. Her mom had narrowed it down to three portraits of her, and asked her to choose which one she wanted to go on her wall. I held my breath, because I had a favourite that I really wanted her to pick. And without hesitation, she named it, “The Splits”. That was really awesome to see, as that image was, by far, one of our favourite portraits of a kid we’ve ever created. I’m so pumped that she’s going to have that up on her wall, I suspect her friends will be quite impressed!

Thanks so much, Lyons Family, for a wonderful, laughter-filled evening. If I ever manage to successfully complete a cartwheel without injuring myself, I’ll credit you guys with the inspiration :)

Lauren

Amber, Chris & Allie // Family Portraits

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A more expressive baby I have never met. This one is an intellect, I can tell. Look at those eyes, there is so much baby wisdom in there, I’d love to know what she was thinking, especially in that first shot :)

Her parents brought her down from Red Deer to get some portraits done to commemorate her one year. Can you believe how adorable and fascinating a baby can be in just one year? We are really loving photographing little ones because no shoot is ever the same! You sort of just let them be, and capture. Nothing ever goes quite as planned, and once you understand that, it’s all good. 

This family is just way too adorable. Amber and Chris have known each other since they were 6. Those are stories that I love hearing about. I also love to watch couples like that, since they really can communicate so much more without words, as I believe they know just what the other is thinking. These two were self-professed as “quiet”, but I like ‘em that way. Spending a gorgeous summer evening with these three was just the ticket.

Thank you guys so much for visiting, and having so much fun! It was a real joy :)

Curtis & Kristina // Portraits

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This is the epitome of Albertan photography; a canola field and a truck :)

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As I hope you can gather from the images, this was a pretty special session. The light was truly unlike anything we have ever experienced. As a photographer our work relies so heavily on the quality of light we work with that when we are treated to the special stuff you see in these images, we are seriously giddy. There were multiple occasions where I would take a shot, check out how it looked on the back of my camera, and nearly swore out loud. I couldn’t believe it. This doesn’t happen every day.

Now, that alone would make for a magical session. But this one had so much more than just incredible light. You see, Rob basically grew up with Curtis out in Beaumont, a small community just outside of our “big city” of Edmonton. And now, Curtis lives about 5 minutes away from us. We have known these two as a couple since the very beginning of our own relationship, so about 5 years now? Somewhere around that mark :) There is something truly special about shooting people you know so well, because from the very first frame there is comfort and trust. They were able to just be themselves for us, which made these images so full of life. It was just pure fun to be out enjoying the evening with them, and I really feel very lucky to have been there.

And finally, that location. That isn’t a random farm or canola field that we happened to find. That is the farm and field of Curtis’s family, where he grew up. That just adds an extra layer of meaning to these photos, making them all the more special to Curtis and Kristina, but also to us. We hang out there often, and have just been waiting for the right time to shoot it. I think we found that right time.

Happy weekend everyone! 

Lauren :)