Oftentimes family sessions can be a bit of a crapshoot when there is rain in the forecast. Some families opt to reschedule, while others brave the wet weather. The Doherty family were one of the ones that just went for it, in spite of the damp conditions. When we arrived at High Park, we took a look around for some tree cover, and found a whimsical little spot in behind the Grenadier Cafe, where adventures ensued … watching a hawk gracefully glide from branch to branch, seeing through a child’s eyes the joy of letting a beetle crawl from one hand to another, racing through the long grass and balancing on a giant downed tree trunk. It was a memorable way to kick off the busy fall season … they brought the cozy knit sweaters and smiles, I brought the camera, and together we made some magic on a rainy first day of October. Read More
Category Archives: Families
The love, the hugs, the dancing, the excitement… Louis, the birthday boy, is super emotive, so it was pretty much a given that he was going to be over the moon about being surprised by family and friends — many of whom travelled from Montreal — on his 60th birthday. He’s not easy to wrangle, but I was given instructions by Catherine, his daughter, to make sure he got a picture with each of his guests. None of those pictures are in this post, though, because I’m all about the stuff that happens in between the posed ones, although with this gang, even most of the posed photos are bursting with energy and laughter.
Before photographing the Fadl family, we had never met in person. All of my correspondence was with Yasmien via email, and upon meeting at a small park in Willowdale, my first impression was that this is a warm family that has a lot of fun together. One of the first things Yasmien’s husband, Nathan, said to me was, “We don’t want stock photos.” “Me neither,” I responded, and what followed was one of the most natural, spontaneous family portrait sessions I’ve done. Yusuf, their eldest son, and Ayah, their daughter, reminded me of my two kids, not only because they are the same distance apart in age, but also because they have very similar personality traits. Yusuf is a little more quiet and reserved, while Ayah is always pulling funny faces, trying to make everyone laugh. Although it was only a one hour long session, when I was scrolling through the photos making selections for the blog post, there were so many images to choose from because this family is so expressive and their interactions are so sweet — including shared moments with grandpa, Abdel, and Yasmien’s brother, Ashraf. When I was taking some individual portraits of Yusuf, at first he didn’t want to be in front of the camera, didn’t want to have his picture taken, but when we started talking about his favourite Transformers, he came to life and became much more animated. Ayah couldn’t get enough of the dandelions throughout the park, both the alive yellow ones and the not so alive white ones, and had so much fun blowing away the fluffy, once yellow, petals. A couple very funny moments were when the kids were pulling funny faces, and Ayah kept looking to her brother for reassurance, like, “Is this a funny face?” “How about this… is this a funny face?” And when the birthday boy, Ameen, had a cake placed in front of him waiting to be smashed, but he politely passed opting for a juice box instead. My goal is always that the joy experienced during the session will translate in the photos, and this family made it easy.
The last time I photographed the Remer family, there was a table with stacks of Oreos, a bubble machine, a room full of balloons and a whole lot of smiling, laughing and dancing. This time around, at Bella’s Bat Mitzvah, the smiling, laughing and dancing remained, but the Oreos, bubbles and balloons were replaced with paint, POP art, fish tacos and a mesmerizing speed painting performance by Jessica Gorlicky — aka JESSGO — who painted a portrait of Bella towards the end of the party. Bella and her friends also got to express themselves creatively, each of them painting their own canvas with a unique sketch by JESSGO. This family is full of colourful ideas that make for great moments to photograph. If my payment was solely in the form of fish tacos, I would’ve been totally cool with that… AND, the taffy was out of this world. Read More
I photographed the Rapoport family at the end of May last year. It was raining quite heavily when I arrived at their East Toronto home. Most of my shoots last May and June were in the rain, so this was nothing new. I actually love shooting in the rain, I think it makes for beautiful images — the even light, movement of the raindrops, saturated colours. But it was REALLY raining on this particular Sunday afternoon, which meant we couldn’t photograph alongside the ravine they live on, which was springtime lush and green at the time, but that didn’t dampen the energy of our session. We ran outside in between heavy downpours, and spent the rest of the time inside their home, which was still lots of fun thanks to the family’s emotiveness, smiles, and laughter. The rain, however, was not gonna stop us, as the highlight of this session occurred when all the kids excitedly grabbed their umbrellas to run around in the puddles and dance in the rain.