creative photographers victoria

Intimate Spring Wedding at Stanley Park Pavilion // Hilary & Chris

Hilary and Chris host their intimate spring wedding at one of Vancouver's most iconic wedding venues, Stanley Park Pavilion // Victoria Wedding Photographers

It's iconic, it's romantic, it's timeless, it's subtly grand. Stanley Park Pavilion is one of Vancouver's most recognizable and desirable wedding venues. Plunked in the middle of Stanley Park in downtown, it feels like a remote destination. It's no wonder that Hilary and Chris wanted this gorgeous property to host their classic wedding. 

Hilary and Chris started for their day at Westin Bayshore, with views of downtown, Burrard Inlet, the North Shore mountains and Stanley Park.  After a sweet first look, we ventured over to Stanley Park, where Chris proposed, for photos before their intimate, indoor, standing ceremony by the pavilion's beautiful fireplace.  After the vows were exchanged, and the champagne popped, it was time to party!  A very special musical performance kicked off the celebration, followed by dinner and speeches and a whole lot of dancing!

Thank you Hilary and Chris for having us there to celebrate with you! We hope you love the photos! 

Thank you to our second shooter, Laura Scotten for your help that evening!

Lone Tree Hill Engagement Photos in Victoria // Samantha and Chris

Sam and Chris hike Lone Tree Hill for incredible sunset views during their engagement photos // Victoria Wedding Photographers

Oh my gosh, this weather!!  After 2 weeks of rain in Victoria, it seems we're finally having a taste of spring and a hint of summer.  The day the clouds broke we ventured out to celebrate the sun by doing Samantha and Chris' engagement photos at Lone Tree Hill.  Not only did we have unbelievable light, accompanied by stunning views, but we had great time chatting and exploring with Sam and Chris. It was refreshing to watch their lighthearted, silly, authentic connection as they romped around the hill and cliff edges, flirting and laughing the whole time. It all felt so very summer!  

We can't wait to watch how much fun these two are going to have during their Saanich wedding in June!

Foggy, Rainy, Puppy-y Engagement Photos at Mount Douglas // Melanie and Matt

Melanie, Matt and their puppy Nova explore Mount Doug in Victoria during their rainy engagement session // Victoria Wedding Photographers

With Melanie and Matt's December wedding fast approaching, we were so happy to hear they had a bit of time to take for themselves to visit friends in Victoria!  What a perfect opportunity for us to do some engagement photos with them, and meet their sweet puppy, Nova.  Having photographed at Mount Doug in the summer, we thought it would a great place to go with Melanie and Matt. We daydreamed about sunkissed autumn leaves trees at the base of the mountain, and miles and miles of stunning views at the top, that they could experience as out-of-towners.  Well, everything works in theory! Ha ha ha! The fog and mist rolled in creating a very dramatic atmosphere around the whole mountain, which was pretty amazing to take in. We were pretty excited for the images it would create.  The rain followed shortly after; starting up the second we took the lens caps off our cameras.  Being outdoor wedding photographers on Vancouver Island's wet coast, we've gotten comfortable working in all types of weather, but we were so glad to see how easily and enthusiastically Matt and Melanie embraced the rain and fog!  They were all laughs and giggles as their puppy dashed through puddles, and as their clothes became drenched in rain drops.  Even with the dense fog at the top of the mountain, we were still able to take in some spectacular views as tree tops and hills jutted out here and there through the mist. It created an isolated feeling, blanket-like atmosphere: perfect for enjoying some cuddles under their umbrella together!

Thanks Melanie and Matt for dancing and skipping in the rain with us, and bringing silly sweet Nova along for us to meet.  We're excited for the wedding!

 

 

Reykjavik Elopement in Iceland // Farrah and Lance

Farrah and Lance elope in Iceland at the Blue Lagoon, black beaches, with a sunset vow exchange at Seljalandsfoss // Victoria Wedding and Elopement Photographers

We met Farrah and Lance through our friend Emma of Emma McCormmick Creative, and were so excited when they told us that they wanted to elope in Iceland and have us there to take the photos!  Like all of our couples, Farrah and Lance had their own unique way of doing their elopement, and we loved photographing the whole experience.  Farrah and Lance had a not-so-secret elopement, and even had a handful of family members and friends along to share in the day.  A mini wedding! We  love it!  

The day started out dark, with rain clouds looming over Reykjavik and as far as we could see: we assumed that our lucky weather streak had run out.  Our only option for the day was to follow the road in any direction that might lead us towards any sort of light. What a great decision that ended up being!

Black lava rocks, topped with bright green moss is what covers most of the Reykjanes Peninsula where we decided to head.  At Blue Lagoon, the vibrantly blue pools of water cut a contrasting path through the green and black blanket. They're made all the more vivid by their stark white silica borders.  For Farrah and Lance's first look, it made for a very surreal setting, even as rain threatened to pour on them.  From there we headed east, where we were treated to black sand beaches; their grassy dunes stretching for thousands of acres. Here we found an absolute absence of people, and warm sunlight bursting through dense fog, creating an otherworldly and romantic atmosphere.  

Farrah and Lance had saved their vows just for Iceland, and they were hoping to be able to exchange them at a waterfall at some point through the day.  As the day wound down and the sun began to set, we made our way further east to Seljalandsfoss, stopping along the way to visit with some Icelandic horses, and trying to coax them into cuddles with the promise of apples. We made it to Seljalandsfoss just in time for a glorious sunset, which couldn't have been more perfect for Farrah and Lance's romantic vow exchange.

Thank you Farrah and Lance! We had such a great day with you and your squad, chasing the light, fishing for horses, and walkie-talkie-ing like truckers between our vehicles!  Congratulations to you both, we hope these memories last forever!

Westwood Plateau Wedding in Coquitlam // Kerri and Nik

Kerri and Nik's Modern and Regal Coquitlam Wedding at Westwood Plateau Golf Course // Vancouver Wedding Photographers

Remember Kerri and Nik’s winter engagement in Whistler?  While January may feel a long time ago, their session is still so fresh in our minds because of how awesome they were to photograph and hang out with on that chilly, bright, music-filled afternoon.  We had so much fun with them that we were counting down the days to their wedding, when we’d finally get to meet the friends and family they had talked so much about, and see more of their wicked dance moves.

The day finally arrived for their wedding at Westwood Plateau in Coquitlam, and we were practically bouncing!  With their black-tie attire, and their easy-going attitudes, the day went seamlessly and regally - from their traditional church ceremony, their portraits, right up until that very last, (very-cocktail-fueled) photobooth photo printed out.  Their whole bridal party, family, and group of friends seemed to burst with energy and love, and this wedding was jam packed with picture perfect, genuine human connection and moments. It was a celebration full of hugs, happy tears, outrageously funny stories, and even more outrageous laughing. We couldn’t get enough!

Thank you Kerri, Nik, and to your family and friends, for being so genuine, loving and well… a little wild!  We loved capturing these moments for you!

Here's a few highlights from the Photobooth!

East Sooke Park Engagement Photos with Lindsey and Brent (and Willow!)

Lindsey, Brent, and Willow romp around the fields, cliffs, and beach at Aylard Farms in East Sooke Park during their engagement photos // Victoria Wedding Photographers

East Sooke park is the first place the two of us visited that made us fall in love with, and eventually move to Sooke.  After talking to Brent and Lindsey about their upcoming Church and State wedding, we got to talking about all the areas they really love around here.  We weren't surprised in the least when Lindsay and Brent told us that East Sooke was one of their favourite places, and that they'd love to do their engagement session there, near Aylard Farms.  It also happened to be a first-hike-together place for them, as Lindsey puts it: her and Willow, her dog, were going for a hike date together, and invited Brent along. They hit it off, evidently!!

The day of the engagement session came and we all romped around the park talking about their upcoming Church and State Winery wedding, summer and travel plans, and laughing at all Willows silly antics.  Lindsey and Brent finished off the evening with some good old stick-toss into the ocean for Willow, and stuck around long enough to catch a couple curious seals swim by. 

Thanks to Lindsey and Brent for hiking around the park for us during your engagement session, we had loads of fun! We're excited about your wedding!!

Tips for Looking and Feeling Awesome in Your Engagement Photos

Some great suggestions on how to look and feel amazing during your engagement photos, from Victoria Wedding Photography team, Pebble and Pine Photography.

Let's start with why we love engagement sessions so much!  We get asked a lot by couples if engagement sessions are a totally necessary part of getting married.  The truth is, they aren't.  You can get married without having engagement sessions and your marriage is still just as legal, haha.  However,  we've found that engagement sessions are so valuable because they are a great way for us to get to know our couples a bit more before the wedding.  It helps us to see how you interact with each other, get to know your dynamic as a couple, and how we can best make you feeling comfortable and confident in front of the lens so the wedding day is effortless and has a smooth natural flow to it.  It's also incredibly helpful and fun for our couples who are preparing for the big day.  It shows you how we work as a photography duo, how you feel being photographed, and help you to get more comfortable in front of our lenses, so that you have less to feel nervous about when your wedding day comes. 

 In our experience of photographing weddings, we've found that many of the couples we work with have not had professional photos done together before working with us.  They often have questions about how they can best prepare for the engagement session, so we've put together a handy little tips list.  That way, you can put your nerves at ease, and feel excited!

First and most importantly to remember; this is not a do-or-die list.  As with all advice, follow it to the degree that you're comfortable with, and that feels right for you!

Ability to move freely. 
Because we’ll be walking around, and getting the two of you interacting with each other, the ability to move around with ease is the best way to feel natural in front of the camera.  You want to make sure that you can wrap your arms around each other comfortably, and also be able to walk and sit down without worrying what your clothes are doing, or feeling restricted by them. We also love taking candid photos of you guys just spending time together, so the less you carry with you (purses, backpacks, etc), the more spontaneous the photos can be.  Some couples like to make sure they can keep their phones close by, or like to bring a small makeup/lip touch-up kit along which is totally fine. In those instances, we will usually just carry those things for you in our camera bags until you need them, so they don’t show through your pockets and clothes.

Wear the clothes, and do the hair and makeup style that make you feel like the most confident, comfortable, and vibrant version of yourself.
Keep in mind that when you look at your photos later, we want you to feel like your photos are a reflection of your true self, not a costumey version of yourself.
Our best advice is to not wear clothes, or get hair and makeup done to an extreme or style that feels unnatural or uncharacteristic of you. The best way to look good on camera is to feel like yourself! 
Brides who are planning to have hair and makeup done at the wedding often opt to have some hair and makeup for the engagement session, to see how it feels to be photographed with it done.  Typically it’s slightly more toned-down, and less formal than it would be on the wedding day.  The best way to look good on camera is to feel like yourself! 

Decide on a location you love and feel comfortable in.
We encourage couples to choose a place of significance to them, and a place they feel comfortable in.  We love engagement sessions to tell some kind of story and have a flow to them, so that you don’t feel like you're just standing in front of the camera posing the whole time. If you're in a place you love and are excited about, you'll feel more at ease in front of the camera.  This way we can get you interacting with each other to really capture your personalities, and your dynamic together.  A lot of couples choose walks on the beach or the woods in areas they like, or decide they want to have a date night, like a wine-and-sunset picnic somewhere.  Other couples choose to have their photos taken doing a hobby they enjoy doing.  We like to chat with our couples about ideas that work best to reflect their life together.

Match your engagement style vibe to the atmosphere and style you’ve planned your wedding. 
Weddings nowadays have become less of a traditional mould, and more of an expression of your relationship.  Chances are, you’ve planned your wedding to reflect your personalities, your style and taste, and of course your eccentricities.  We recommend matching your engagement style to fit amongst the same general style of your wedding, and your own personal style.  Some couples consider themselves more outdoorsy and adventurous. Some couples vibe with boho, whereas others are more modern and edgy, etc.  So to avoid feeling uncomfortable or inauthentic to yourself, we usually recommend couples dress in what Matt refers to as, “casual plus, or better".  It's a spruced up version of your own real, personal style.  For example, a couple we shot last year, during a beach sunset, described their outfit choice this way, “we chose outfits to that we would wear to a beachfront patio, on a night out for dinner and drinks with good friends we hadn’t seen for a long time.”   

Complement each other’s style. 
This is not a suggestion to wear a matchy-matchy couples onesie outfit, though that would be hilarious. We do, however, recommend your clothes complement each other’s style and scale of formality. We’ve found most couples have a similar style anyways, but we just throw this in as a tip.  For example, if one of you is in a suit jacket, the other might not want to wear those oh-so-cozy LuLus and gym top.  Or, if one is in a brightly coloured, patterned summer dress, the other probably wouldn’t be rocking the Johnny Cash all-black-from-head-to-toe look.  You're both individuals, but these photos show how you complement each other as two equal parts of a whole.

Play off the season and location.  
This all goes with the goal of feeling comfortable and natural in your surroundings. We want you to dress and feel awesome for the weather, and location you're in.  Heels aren't always the best shoe choice for snowy mountains or sandy beaches. If you're planning to rock a strapless dress at the top of Cypress in the winter, bring along a cute jacket to wear.  If you're planning a romantic summer sunset on a hot beach, leave that parka at home and wear layers instead. 

I know, I know! This isn't one of Andrea and Eddie's engagement photos. But we love their use of vibrant colour and eccentric prints to show their personal style. Don't be afraid to be bold, friends!

I know, I know! This isn't one of Andrea and Eddie's engagement photos. But we love their use of vibrant colour and eccentric prints to show their personal style. Don't be afraid to be bold, friends!

Don't shy away from bright colours or prints, but avoid fluorescent neon materials. 
Bold prints and vibrant colours can be a great way to show your personal style, but be weary of fluorescent and neon.  Think Olivia Newton John in her 80’s aerobic leotards.  While these types of colours are mostly seen in workout and road-worker attire to promote visibility and road safety, they have started to pop up in regular style as well for a visual punch.  Great in real life, but these fluorescent and neon colours are so reflective that they’ll reflect their own colour onto your skin in photographs.  If these colours are on the front of your shirt, they will often cast their colour up onto your face and your partner’s, even on a cloudy day. (We’ll have a photo in the blog to show an example of this effect.)

A good night sleep, proper meals, and lots of water! 
This is just a general rule for day to day life, but it applies to the day of your photoshoot as well.  If you’re nervous the night before, try to hit the hay early to make sure you’re not tired the evening of your session. If you’re busy with hair and makeup on the day of, make sure to allot time for food and water through the day of your the photo session.  It’s the best way to look vibrant, feel refreshed, and stay excited through your photos together. Plus, as we all know, it’s hard to smile and feel lovey when we’re hangry. 

 

These are some of our prep / attire tips. But again, only follow these to the degree that you’re comfortable with, and don’t feel restricted by.  We usually spend a few minutes at the start of each photo shoot to let you guys know what expect so that you know how to interact with each other and the camera during the photoshoot. We’ll shake out all those nervous, awkward feelings at the start so you guys can feel awesome in the photos! 

 

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