Although it may raise an eyebrow or two, the preparation that goes into Prom CAN be akin to bridal preparations: there's the selection of a more-than-ordinary dress, plans for special hair and makeup, shoes, accessories, florals, a fast-paced, whirlwind day ... nerves -- on both the parts of the graduates AND the parents. Prom sessions - even mini ones like these - can slow down the day and allow teen, mom, dad, siblings and even boyfriend or prom date to carve and protect some time for themselves before the swarming of friends and the big celebration - and provide them a keepsake in more ways than one. To Callie, Genevieve, Teghan and your families: thank-you for allowing me to give you that space and for trusting me to provide you with mementos of your day. Do. Great. Things. xox
This Mother-Daughter Portrait Couture session was particularly special for Mom Samantha as she is just about ready to add a son to the mother-daughter dynamic she shares with Katie. The focus of the shoot was to highlight the connection between mother and daughter but I couldn't resist securing a few shots of Samantha on her own so she'd have an additional keepsake of this special time in her life. Sister and Mom are both so excited to welcome this little guy into the world in a couple of weeks! Can't wait to meet him Stevensons!
Makeup: 2bu Esthetics & Makeup Artistry
With her daughter ready to go off to university, Merle knew she wanted to spend some special mother-daughter time with Courtney. Mother and daughter dawned their favourite little black dresses, got pampered with hair and makeup and smiled and laughed their way through a Mother-Daughter Portrait Couture Session, revealing their strength, confidence and beauty as women. Even son, Connor, joined in at the end to give and receive some hugs to the special women in his life. "Mother's Day" was just the excuse to get this family in front of the lens. Geography and time will eventually separate them -- but their shared smiles, laughs and memories will remain in their minds and in their images. Thank-you, Merle, Courtney and Connor for your trust and for the very distinct honour of allowing me to create this with you. xox
Hair -- Stephanie Richardson, Richardson Hair Design
Makeup -- Megan Roberts, 2bu Esthetics & Makeup Artistry
An open letter to all of us once again as Mother's Day approaches:
TO OUR MOTHERS: You must exist in photos for your children. One day, they will be grown and those photos will be priceless. Remind yourselves of your beauty when all you can see is theirs.
TO OUR CHILDREN, AND MOST ESPECIALLY, TO OUR DAUGHTERS: You must get momma out from behind the lens and in front of it. You are her focus and always will be; remind her of her beauty when all she can see is yours. Remind her of the woman she is. Be there to share it with her. Celebrate your beauty as women and as mothers, together. One day, the cards will shuffle and those photos will be priceless.
TO OUR WOMEN: We MUST exist in photos for our families, our children, ourselves. The time is NOW -- not when you're 10lbs lighter, not when your hair is longer, not when your teeth are whiter or when you have the perfect outfit -- there is no guarantee of tomorrow. Exist. Give them something to look back on, to hold and to continue to love.
TO OUR MEN: Encourage her to do this. Remind her she is beautiful and valued and that she belongs to a network of other beautiful, strong women. Stand back and watch her come home validated and happy.
Mother - Daughter Portrait Couture Sessions.
In studio. Your mother. Your daughters. Your women.
$199 (+hst). Up to 5 people.
Includes 2 Keepsake Prints (8x10 matted to 11x14).
For the ultimate Mother-Daughter experience, add Professional Hair and / or Makeup:
$75 each service, per person, payable to the hair or makeup artist.
Call the studio at 613 794 0662 for your complimentary wardrobe consultation and to book.
Still not sure whether you should book? See what Tracy W. had to say about her Mother-Daughter session:
With no particular special excuse needed, mother and daughter duo, Tracy and Sarah, decided to spend some quality time together as women and treat themselves to a Mother-Daughter Portrait Couture Session. They were first pampered with hair and makeup by Richardson Hair Design and 2bu Esthetics & Makeup Artistry and then confidently stepped in front of the camera to enjoy some smiles, laughs and good spirits. Thank-you, Tracy & Sarah for the trust you so obviously extended me and for allowing me to capture and showcase the beauty that lies within.
To our Mothers: You must exist in photos for your children. One day, they will be grown and those photos will be priceless.
To our Children: You must get mum out from behind the lens and in front of it. You are her focus and always will be; remind her of her beauty and be there to share it with her. One day, she will be gone and those photos will be priceless.
To All: We MUST exist in photos for each other. The time is NOW -- not when you're 10lbs lighter, not when your hair is longer, not when you have a better outfit -- as there is no guarantee of tomorrow.
To Diana, Milena, Anastasia and Paulina: thank-you for recognizing the importance of photos and sharing a priceless experience with the key women in your lives. You have given each other precious keepsakes -- the value of which cannot be measured. xox
Kathryn is one of my all-time favourite people. Fate brought us together and we laugh as we continue to find out just how connected we are: Someone relatively new to me is oftentimes well-known to Kathryn; it is through a random chain of events that we then discover the small degree of separation. At 23, Kathryn is well on her way to knowing exactly what she wants for her future and is working hard to achieve it. She is an excellent hair stylist -- so much so that LeMarLUXE in Prescott, Ontario immediately snatched her up upon graduation to add to their team of talented stylists ; in fact, Kathryn's work can be seen on just about every one of my Contemporary Portrait subjects. This time, however, it was Kathryn's turn to be in front of the camera and not working behind it. By her own account, she was totally out of her comfort zone, but you wouldn't know it. Beauty like that -- that comes from within -- cannot be held back or affected by mere nerves. Thank-you, Kathryn, for taking the risk, exposing your beauty and knowing that "life begins at the end of your comfort zone". xox
I have yet to meet someone who could transform themselves as easily as Joudel does into so many amazing and stunning looks. Fresh-faced and youthful, Joudel could easily pass as a teen -- you would have NO idea she is a mother of FOUR very young children. Makeup on and hair styled, Jodi becomes a siren, projecting style, elegance and glamour. Jodi can go from girl-next-door to royalty to seductress to ethnic beauty to demure bride -- all within a matter of minutes. Good thing because Jodi has signed on with MIM, Models International Management. She has her own Facebook page showcasing some of her work and can be found at: Jodie Janoska. What an absolute pleasure it was for me to work with Jodie to create portraiture that reflects both her inner and outer beauty.
It's hard to get Gloria to stop smiling -- but who would with a smile that genuine, warm and inviting? I don't think I have had someone enjoy their session as much as Gloria did: she smiled, laughed and danced throughout. For a short time, she wasn't Gloria, Jason's wife and mommy to very little ones, Jaz and Micah: she was Gloria focusing on Gloria, having fun, letting go of everyday life and the responsibilities that come with it, radiating confidence, good-naturedness and balance. A perfect session. I smile everytime I look at your pictures, Gloria, remembering how much fun you were having. xox
I love it when I work with women who are strong, confident, healthy and inspirational. At 65, Mrs. C. is all that -- and more. She is a wife, mother and grandmother who not only prioritizes her family, but also herself, eating well, exercising (she kick-boxes!) and taking great care of her health and well-being. And it shows. She's a spunky little package -- her husband affectionately calls her his "CEO" -- who has beauty, brains, health and personality all caught up in one. Thank-you, Mrs. C. for the privilege of photographing your strength and elegance. xox
Oh, Angela, you are SASSY and SPUNKY and just plain FABULOUS. Angela proves boudoir and glamour can be fun, energizing and full of laughter. Angela is inspirational: a mother of two working in a typically male-dominated profession, she prioritizes good eating, health and fitness -- and has a great time doing it with her family and friends. I love that she is healthy, confident and happy -- and it shows. xox
Whoever says teens have a tendency to be impatient, has yet to met Mekayla. A delayed turnaround did not phase this girl: she has had the patience of a saint waiting on her images to be showcased. She also displayed such grace and maturity during her session, weathering the summer heat with smiles, good-naturedness and great style. (Oh, and she's a ham.) At 14, one can already see the beautiful woman -- inside and out -- she will become. Thank-you, O'Grady Family, for allowing me the honour of photographing your "little girl" as she moves on to another phase in her bright, bright future. xox
Colleen is one part Portrait of a Lady and one part 50 Shades of Colleen: Classy, elegant and smoking hot. Can you believe this woman is in her 50's? We should be so lucky to look this fabulous! What a fun, fun, fun session too -- lots of laughing, smiling and carrying on -- definitely one of my favourites. (It is said that the fruit doesn't fall too far from the tree and apparently Colleen has a smoking hot mother and daughter too -- oh what I'd give to do a multi-generation mother-daughter beauty session with this trio! ) Colleen, it has been my pleasure meeting you and working with you! So grateful we have crossed paths.
CBS's infamous Andy Rooney was once rumoured to have said, "As I grow in age, I value women over 4o most of all". He would have adored Heather: outgoing, outspoken, oh so gorgeous and over 40. Yes, over 40. And, yes, a mother of 4 to boot. Heather stepped out of her comfort zone, busy life, jobs and children to take some time to create some fun -- and stunning -- images of herself. She was ever-smiling, relaxed and genuine. Andy Rooney, you may be on to something. ;)
Many of you may recall the contest I ran earlier this year in honour of International Women's Day and my participation as the Official Photographer at the I Am Woman Trade Show and Conference. Aynsley graciously agreed to be my model to showcase a woman's beauty in a contemporary light. One can be glamourous, provocative and stunning in long sleeves, pants and clothing that is not fitted or overly revealing. My repeated mantra and business model is that every woman -- be she pregnant, a mother, a bride, a sister, an aunt, a grandmother, a daughter -- deserves a reminder of her beauty. In the coming weeks, fasten your seat belts as I will show you ALL of them. Heather, mother of 4 taking time for herself, is next ... Now, who of you will take up my mantra as well?
Makeup: Lyz Plant
Hair: Kathryn Connell
Pink Tulle Skirt: Ashley Morrison, Tutus by Ashley
When Elizabeth contacted me for a tasteful Glamour Shoot to send to her husband who is deployed to the Kandahar region in Afghanistan, I readily agreed. Elizabeth was absolutely amazing to work with: so easygoing, relaxed and comfortable in her own skin. Her style was elegant, tasteful and understated -- but her resulting images are anything but an understatement. Elizabeth, thank-you for entrusting me with this very special request; Dave, thank-you for your service to your country and the sacrifices you, Elizabeth and your families make on an on-going basis. This Canadian is able to live safely in your country because of you. Godspeed you home.
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