My Top 10 Favourite Moments of 2015...

What a year this has been!  I am very happy to share with you a few of my favourite images and most importantly, my favourite MOMENTS of 2015.  It was a memorable year in many ways and only confirmed for me what I already knew… I am very blessed to be able to do what I love.

Here they are, in no particular order…

Deepak Chopra Sweet Pea Photography Lori Miles

I would have to say, spending 2 days photographing Deepak Chopra was right up there on my top 10 this year.  With so many people talking about mindfulness and meditation these days, the timing was perfect. Hearing this man speak with such wisdom and clarity was a gift and really helped me understand the power of being present.

Pink Petal Ballet Sweet Pea Photography Lori Miles

From a great meditation guru to adorable ballerinas in tutus… the Pink Petal Ballet Year end Performance (created by my fabulously talented best friend, Alix Dunham) is always a highlight for me!  Photographing these beautiful ballerinas and seeing their pure enthusiasm and sweet nervousness onstage performing for their loved ones is an absolute joy.  It never fails to inspire me and remind me what life is all about.

Vancouver Wedding Photographer Lori Miles Sweet Pea Photography

Having wonderful girlfriends is a blessing and having those girls as your bridesmaids to share your wedding day is a beautiful thing!   My bride Carly was hands down one of the happiest brides I have had the pleasure of photographing.  She and her groom and the entire bridal party had so much fun, my cheeks were sore from laughing all day!  This image was just one of many great candid moments from our location shoot in Stanley Park.

Vancouver Wedding Photographer Lori Miles Sweet Pea Photography

When I met with my bride Kimberley and found out she worked with horses, I have to admit, I was a little excited.  I guess my enthusiasm was appreciated as Kim and I immediately began collaborating on my idea for a horse-themed bridal shoot prior to the wedding.  This was one of my favourite images... Kim with Pepper, a dapple grey Percheron standing 18 hands tall and weighing close to 2,000 lbs.  Seeing Kim’s bond with these gorgeous animals and how easy she made it look working with them was crazy fun and definitely one of my favourite moments!

Vancouver Wedding and Portrait Photographer Lori Miles Sweet Pea Photography

I always love keeping in touch with my couples as they go off to enjoy married life and start a family together.  Mandy and Karl’s wedding a few years ago was incredible and when she got in touch to book a family shoot this past summer, I was so happy to see them again!  Photographing this beautiful young couple together with their adorable new daughter, Stella was so much fun!  Karl is a star defenseman with the Washington Capitals and he and Mandy are such awesome parents.  I was thrilled to hear they are now expecting their second child already next year!

     

 

 

Every couple I meet is unique and I have never met two the same.  Doing an engagement shoot is such a great idea for many reasons, but one of the best parts for me is seeing how my couples interact.  Beverly & Cesar are very quiet, yet powerful together and it was beautiful to see how protective and caring he was towards her.  The connection they share was very inspiring and the location we chose for our shoot at Whytecliffe Park didn’t hurt either.  Something magical happened and the images we got that night are some of my favourites ever.  I feel blessed that these couples choose me and I know their wedding next May will be amazing… I cannot wait to spend their day with them.

Vancouver Wedding Photographer Lori Miles Sweet Pea Photography

Blending their two beautiful families into one was a big part of Corinne & Jamie’s intimate backyard wedding in September.  Corinne had shared with me how family portraits were important to them, and rather than do the standard posed shots, I really wanted to do something fun.  When they came up with the idea of doing one with the family gang sign, it was perfect!  We could not stop laughing and I love how this image captures their awesome family vibe.

Vancouver Wedding Photographer Lori Miles Sweet Pea Photography

Another one of my favourite parts of a wedding is the end of the ceremony… all of the anticipation and excitement and nervousness of the wedding day comes together in the recessional when you take that first walk down the aisle as husband and wife.  I remember feeling how happy they were when I took this image of Courtenay and Scott as they came out of the church and it just captures the indescribable joy I think every couple feels at that moment.

Vancouver Wedding Photographer Lori Miles Sweet Pea Photography

If I had to choose, I would have to say that shooting bridal portraits on the wedding day has always been one of my favourite things to photograph.  Even when I was young, I used to love taking photos of my girlfriends with flowers or perfume bottles and make them look pretty.  I believe a woman looks the most beautiful on her wedding day… having your hair and make up done, wearing a beautiful gown, somehow it all comes together and I love being there to document it for her.  I took this image of my beautiful bride, Jenny at my last wedding of the year and I love how she sees herself in the reflection of the mirror and is smiling back.

Vancouver Wedding and Portrait Photographer Lori Miles Sweet Pea Photography

On a personal note, one of my favourite moments came shortly after we added a new puppy to our family.  It was just another night, sitting together on the couch with our pups when my daughter Maddi looked outside and said what a pretty sky it was, we should go try and catch the sunset.  I couldn’t get in the car fast enough and next thing I knew, we were down at Cates Park and this beautiful scene was right in front of me.   Definitely one of my favourite moments of the year and thanks to this little iPhone shot, one I will always treasure.

Thank you to all of my wonderful clients for putting your trust in me, to my fabulous fellow vendors in our industry for helping make this job so much fun, and to my amazing family and friends for your love and support… this year was incredible and I look forward to sharing many more great moments with each and every one of you in 2016! 

Pink Petal Ballet - Sweet Pea Photography

A few years ago, my daughter started pre-school... it was SUCH a cute age and I remember meeting some new moms and making some wonderful friends at the time.  one in particular, whose daughter was so adorable, I couldn't WAIT to photograph.  imagine my delight when my phone rang a few weeks later and it was her mom, Alix, asking me to photograph her!  she came by for coffee, I took a few photos and we became fast friends.  for the past 13 years we have watched our kids grow up together, shared many a family summer vacation, as well as a few martinis on the deck... and she is still one of my best friends.  not only is she a super cool chick, she was (and still is!) a very talented ballet teacher.  I remember how much I absolutely adored dressing up my daughter in her pretty pink tutu and bringing her to Alix's classes and watching her dance around.  Alix's Pink Petal Ballet classes have become very popular and a highlight of the dance community here in North Vancouver... the best part is, for the past several years, I have had the great pleasure of photographing their end of the year performance. each year, it brings tears to my eyes to see these beautiful ballerinas with their smiling faces and their INCREDIBLE (handmade by Alix!) costumes.  this year was no different... except I also had the pleasure of watching her very talented daughter, Asha Diaz sing onstage while my own daughter, Maddi helped out backstage wrangling all the adorable little ballerinas.  I couldn't have been more proud of both of them... but mainly of my best friend, Alix and the incredible person she is.

here's a few of my favourite images from this year's performance, Circus!  if the cuteness overload isn't too much for you and you want more... feel free to check out this slideshow to watch the magic for yourself.

I hope you enjoy the photos!

xoxo

Lori

 

 

Adina Neufeld of Stella and Dot - Vancouver Headshots

Anyone who knows me knows how much I love jewellery.  Even my Mom says she thinks I was a gypsy in a past life... which I think could be entirely possible!  Therefore, you can imagine how happy I was when the fabulously stylish Adina Neufeld asked me to do some headshots for her recently.  Adina is a powerhouse stylist with the gorgeous jewellery line, Stella & Dot.  And, I'll be honest, I am completely addicted to Stella & Dot jewellery.  Don't judge... there are far worse addictions, I can assure you.

Adina is such an awesome woman.  Not only is she one of the hardest working, supportive and fun women I know, she has also figured out the secret.  You want to know what the secret is?  If you're doing what you love, it doesn't seem like work, silly!  Not only does she have THE most drool-worthy collection of baubles and jewels to choose from every day (I'm sorry, do I sound a bit jealous?), but she also gets to work with an amazing community of women.  Stella and Dot is a quickly growing Fortune 500 company and is unique in that it is only sold through in-home trunk shows by personal stylists, like my good friend, Adina.  I can personally attest to how fun the trunk shows are as I hosted one recently and it was a blast!  Lots of friends, lots of laughs, lots of jewellery... what could be more fun than that?

All the great baubles I have of my own now, that's what.

Thanks, Adina!

xoxo

Lori

Gaetano Fasciana - photographer and friend

Many years ago, before I ever dreamed of being a photographer, I loved looking at images… in magazines, editorials, advertisements, and I always remember this one photographer’s work that stood out to me.  There was just something about his work that was incredibly beautiful…. simple, strong, stunning images that were distinctly unique and unlike anything else I had seen.  I remember looking into who he was with the silly thought of contacting him to say how much I loved his work and how much it spoke to me.  Of course, I never did. Fast forward twenty years later, I am now a photographer and my teenage daughter has expressed an interest in modeling.  One day her agent calls to say she has a job for her, shooting for Blanche McDonald Centre.  When I ask her who the photographer is, I am floored when she tells me… Gaetano Fasciana.  Who would have thought?  Years earlier, the photographer whose work I had admired from afar was now going to photograph my daughter… I went along on the shoot, not only to chaperone but excited to finally meet him.  At first, I was nervous and a bit surprised by how quiet and unassuming he was.  When I had the opportunity, I introduced myself and told him how I had admired his work for many years… he seemed flattered, but also a little surprised.  I spent most of the day hanging in the background, fascinated, watching him work and smiling to myself at how life can work sometimes.

At the end of the day, Gaetano invited us for coffee and a friendship began.  Maddi was fortunate to have the opportunity to shoot with him several more times and I would tag along and carry the reflector and watch him work… always amazed at how he could take a model into an alleyway with very little to work with and create magic… literally, in a matter of minutes.  He really was a genius... his eye for light and shadow and composition was incredible and instinctual and all the while... he made it seem completely effortless.

Outside of work, we would meet for coffee or go for Pho at his favourite Vietnamese place on Denman and talk about life and art and photography.  The man behind the camera turned out to be far more complicated than one would think.  His genius behind the lens was matched by a fierce intelligence and a kind heart… although I soon learned that conversations with Gaetano were rarely about the weather.  He did not suffer fools and had little patience for small talk.  He lived his life on a level of consciousness unlike anyone I knew and the time we spent together was equally fascinating and exhausting.  One of many things I loved about him, aside from his very dry sense of humour, was how he encouraged me to look at life in a much deeper way.  Being friends with Gaetano was interesting and he always made you think…. which is a rare gift in a human being.

The stunning images he took of Maddi, the memories of our friendship and the time we spent together mean the world to me.  Gaetano was a unique and beautiful individual and I am proud to have called him a friend.  Wherever he is now, I can only hope he has found peace.  I know he will be missed.

 

 

singer songwriter, asha diaz

I have always said that one day, I will see this girl up on stage somewhere, accepting a major award... but for now she's just enjoying being a teenager.  a very talented teenager, mind you.  one who not only sings and plays piano, but writes her own music as well. I have had the pleasure of knowing Asha since she was a little girl, dancing around in her tutu with my daughter, Maddi... and it has been a blast watching her grow up into the fabulously talented girl she is today.  she has been performing and writing her own original music since she was eight years old, she even held court performing in Robson Square during the 2010 Olympics this February.  she followed up that success this summer by releasing her first CD, Jumpin' Off.

Asha's most recent endeavour is competing in CBC Radio's contest "Best High School Singer/Songwriter".  her vibe and her music reminds me of a young Sarah McLachlan and I know you would love her music... so, take a minute, have a listen and VOTE (between October 14 - 17th) at this link to help make Asha's dreams come true!

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GO ASHA!!

xoxo

Lori