Alana and Kevin's entire wedding day perfectly reflected their love for each other and for living life to its fullest. Through our time spent hanging out with Alana and Kevin during their engagement session or through phone calls and emails, it was clear that the number one item on their wedding day list was for everybody in attendance to have the greatest time of their lives. They didn't want to follow a strict schedule and they wanted us to work without a prescribed list of specific images they were looking for. It was great for Sheena, Vivek and I to work with such an awesome couple who trusted our creative vision without any hesitation. We arrived in the late morning to Alana's parents' house just north of the city where we entered to a festive atmosphere with great food and the happiest bunch of people you could imagine. While we were inside photographing the action, Alana was busy containing her enthusiasm upstairs while her brothers played one-on-one basketball in their backyard court. Kevin arrived a short while after but kept busy in other sections of the house so that there would be no accidental sightings of his bride. When the bride and groom were finally ready to take on their big day, it was time for their first-look which they had planned to take place in the woods across the street. I was following Alana outside and didn't have any idea that her entire family was there waiting for this moment along with Kevin who looked so excited that I thought he may actually explode. Seeing each other for the first time in such a natural space with the sun scattering light like a disco ball, it seemed too fitting that we were working with such a fabulous day and an equally as fabulous couple. There seemed to be amazing little pockets of light around the woods that we used before heading to Unionville for some more pictures. We used all kinds of elements along the way like the boardwalk, sky, grassy hills and, of course, a colourful parrot, before heading back to the venue.
The Warehouse Event Venue at Downsview Park in Toronto is a large, open-spaced venue that allows a couple to customize it anyway they want and really let their creative juices flow so we weren't surprised that we loved the decor and use of space when we first arrived. We had about an hour prior to the ceremony so we headed outside with the wedding party who were hilarious to work with. We ended up on a railroad that was bit tricky to walk around with high heels but the girls had a great sense of humour and we managed to fit in a few more group shots around the industrial area before Alana walked down their aisle to meet Kevin and finally become husband and wife. I'm so glad I continued following the newlyweds down the back hall after running back down the aisle because they gave me a quick little touchdown dance before heading into their suite. I love those fleeting moments that you can't plan for whatsoever but you always have to be ready for and on your toes in case they happen.
Alana and Kevin's entrance into the room was followed by the craziest hora dances of all time and included the following (in no particular order): moshing, crowd surfing, blanket tossing, the human tunnel flip, silver tray free-style standing and, of course, the obligatory inflatable pink flamingo that seemed to float on top of everybody's hands like a magic carpet ride. Yes, it was a wild hora and I did feel slightly beat up and extremely sweaty once it ended half an hour later. But, I did know that it worth every second to get the exact images I was hoping to snap. As the rest of the night continued, the room continued to glow and buzz through some of the funniest speeches I have ever listened to at a wedding, a lot of groom roasting that literally had Kevin loosening up his collar, and amazing music that got the guests grooving all night. We started packing up our gear later in the night when I thought things were quieting down, but then had to run to quickly grab my camera again as the pink flamingo made an encore entrance; this time with both the bride and groom together riding the high of such an incredible day. It was the perfect way for us to end our day with this wonderful couple. We can't thank you enough for giving us all the freedom we needed to capture your day and we wish you all the best as you start your new lives together!
Gary, Sheena + Vivek
· Officiant: Deborah Staiman
· Caterer: Food Dudes
· Donut Tower: The Rolling Pin
· Videographer: Big Ticket Productions
· Florist: Toronto Florist
· Band: George St. Kitts/Midnight
· Wedding Consultant: Marsha Baker