Kangaroo Valley Wedding – The Night Before – Sarah + Paul

Sarah and Paul know how to have a wedding.  They packed up all their friends and family and shipped them off into the wilds of Kangaroo Valley in New South Wales, Australia for the weekend.  It was winter down south, and for the greater part of the past few weeks it had been raining.  The crew at Kangaroo Valley Bush Retreat had the means to look after everyone regardless of the weather, but rain would make it much more difficult to take advantage of the beautiful property the Retreat featured.

I must say I’ve become a big fan of weekend weddings over the past few years.  This was the first of a couple that I photographed in 2013, and I’m looking forward to more in 2014.  While driving out to Kangaroo Valley from the coast I was like a kid in a candy store, wide eyed at the beautiful forests, steep rocky hillsides, and plentiful wildlife.   After most people had arrived, the parents cooked up a giant barbecue dinner giving everyone a chance to mingle and have some drinks as they settled into the Retreat property.  After dinner we piled wood on the bonfire to keep the drizzling rain off.  As you’ll see it worked pretty well.

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It was early to bed for myself and many others, but a few kept it going long into the night.  The next morning came fast however, and I’ll be sharing that unfolding later this week.  It was a pretty special day, so there might be a few photos to show.

 

- Brian

 

Jervis Bay, Australia – Sarah + Paul

This past summer two amazing friends of mine flew me halfway around the world to New South Wales, Australia to photograph their wedding.  Sarah and I worked together in Banff a few years back, but I had only corresponded with Paul by email prior to arriving in Australia.  We narrowly missed eachother in New Delhi earlier in the year, so spending time with them in their hometown was a great chance to get to know Paul, and both of their families better.  Whether we were sitting in their backyard, walking the beautiful beaches and shoreline of Jervis Bay or driving through the countryside, Paul was always telling me the names of the birds and plants and interesting characteristics of their nature.  I appreciate that knowledge and awareness of one’s surroundings in a person.  The more I got to know Paul over the next week or so, the more my respect grew.

We took these photographs after the wedding while walking in Jervis Bay.  This area was only a short drive from their home, but the wedding took place a little bit off the coast in Kangaroo Valley, which was a few hours away.  Sarah + Paul rented a bush retreat in the valley that had enough cabins to fit their awesome crew of friends and family for a weekend getaway.  I’m excited to share their wedding story in two parts next week.

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- Brian

Canmore Wedding Photography – Jocelyn + Alex

Jocelyn informed me that I was photographing her wedding well before Alex proposed.  After all the adventures these two had already been on it was only a matter of time before they committed to making many more, so she was by no means getting ahead of herself.  Sure enough, early on a cold October morning in Canmore, Jocelyn arrived at work only to discover a letter that sent her on a treasure hunt of sorts.  At the end was a proposal.

I had the pleasure of getting to know these two even better over the next year and a half as they planned their winter wedding.  We did engagement photographs in the summer, and before long the day had arrived.  Their’s was a very special wedding, and it brought together people from all over the globe.  Although Jocelyn and Alex were settling in the mountain town of Canmore, Alex’s family and friends came all the way from New Zealand.  Jocelyn’s weren’t much closer, having to travel across the length of Canada from Ontario.  Everyone was welcomed warmly by the close knit group of friends that the pair have made over the years in Canmore.

One of the unique highlights of the day took place at the start of the reception when Alex and three of his best friends treated the assembled guests to a traditional Maori dance called the Haka.  The Haka is an ancestral war cry, and unlike anything I’ve ever seen at a wedding before.  Aside from being a war challenge, the Haka is also performed as an enthusiastic welcome to distinguished guests, or as a celebration of a great achievement.  Jocelyn and Alex’s commitments to eachother are certainly one such achievement.

I’d like to give a big thank you to my good friend Kim Payant Photography who gave me a hand in documenting the day, and to Wild Magnolia for handcrafting a beautiful wedding album for the pair.  The biggest thanks of all of course goes to Jocelyn and Alex Large for inviting me into their wedding, and their lives.  I count myself blessed to have friends like the two of you.

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Hair:   The Loft

Makeup:  Alyssa Maria  (Bridesmaid)

Venue:  Ralph Connor Memorial United Church

Reception:  Canmore Golf and Curling Club

Music:  DJ Ben

 

- Brian

Jasper Wedding Photography – Dorothea + Holger

Dorothea and Holger travelled from Germany to elope in the Rocky Mountains.  They didn’t tell anyone back home about the true purpose of their holiday. Instead, they planned a birthday party for Holger shortly after they would arrive back in Germany so they could share the good news and photographs with their friends and family.  I love intimate ceremonies like this, it’s truly something special to be invited into such a personal part of a couples’ lives.  Their close friends Kirsten, Dirk, and Lars (the ring bearer) joined them from Edmonton, and Kirsten put together the flowers and cake for the occasion. They spoke their vows to each other on Pyramid Island without telling their family and friends, but they allowed my camera and I to bring colour and emotion to the imaginations of their relatives, and life to the stories they will undoubtedly share with their friends.  I am very thankful for the opportunity, and for the laughs and smiles we all shared that day.   A big thanks goes out to Beryl Cahill for performing the ceremony, and the always friendly staff at Alpine Village who hosted the couple and their friends for two beautiful autumn days in Jasper.

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- Brian

Jasper Grad 2013

Another year gone, and another awesome group of Jasper kids are being unleashed on the world.  It was inspiring to hear their dedication to sustainability, and contributing to the community.  Wherever these Grads end up, they will certainly be a valuable part of their communities.

This year I will continue my tradition of giving a portion of  White Leaf’s profits back to the community.  15% of profits from the print sale will be made available for donation to community programs or sustainability initiatives.  If any Grads would like to have a say in where the money will go, please send me a note through the contact form in the main menu!  Carbon Offsets will be purchased to neutralize the shipping impact.

Grads have until July 1st to order prints of their formal photographs.  Orders can be made through the online Gallery over in White Leaf Photographs’ online storefront.   Orders will be shipped out on July 10th.

 

- Brian

 

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