Imagine Creative Passion – mark@mark11.com

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Wedding Reflections – Looking back and looking forward to the weddings yet to shoot

It’s always around this time of year where I find myself in the thick of planning for the upcoming wedding season yet reflecting back on the weddings that have already settled into my memories and my hard drives. I know I’ve said it before, but I really do feel so incredibly lucky that so many wonderful people have asked me to be part of their special day and bear witness to such a significant moment in their lives. The countless hours of location scouting, emails, phone calls, planning, dreaming blend with the hours on the road, airplanes, hotel rooms and everything else that come together as part of the wedding shoot. Wedding days are like Christmas morning for me – so many surprises, emotions, and unexpected gifts to open, opportunities, moments, tears of happiness, a few nerves, and only one chance to capture it. With each passing year I think more about the importance of capturing the raw essence of the day, and less about shots missed, trying to plan too much, and really just letting the day guide me. With this as my foundation I move forward, with a whole bunch of amazing stories yet to be told in the weeks and months to come, but for now I look back at some of the experiences that got me to today.

 

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The last 365 – A look back at the commercial work of 2015

What a crazy year – lots of travel, playoffs, new clients, and sunny days – here are a few of the jpegs that crossed my desk this past year…

 

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Lindsay & Mike – Destination Wedding in Bucerias Mexico

Fun. Fun. Unbelievably fun. That’s Lindsay & Mike. That’s the official description of their wedding (week) in Mexico last month. The group stayed at a beautiful new all-inclusive resort in Puerto Vallarta just north of the Malecon called the Now Amber – I wasn’t complaining at all with my views of the sun setting over the pacific ocean from the top floor! The wedding ceremony was held just outside PV in a little seaside town called Bucerias at a private oceanfront garden that could’ve easily been a movie set it was so beautiful. So many amazing friends, wonderful family, non-stop margaritas and topped off with both a taco bar and churros made on site! Did I mention how much fun this wedding was….DSC_8396 _ND89387 DSC_8169 DSC_8190 DSC_8399 _ND89421 DSC_8274 DSC_8298 DSC_8281 DSC_8320 DSC_8483 DSC_8485 DSC_8519 DSC_8542 _ND89513 DSC_8549 DSC_8722 DSC_8580 _ND89566 DSC_8636 _ND89558 DSC_8651 DSC_8730 DSC_8743 _ND89552 DSC_8924 DSC_8945 DSC_8947 DSC_8957 DSC_8985 _ND89620 DSC_9000 DSC_9095 DSC_9134 DSC_9177 DSC_9261 DSC_9286 DSC_9414 DSC_9539 DSC_9549 _ND89982 DSC_9626
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Maggie & Dave – Red Deer Ski Hill Wedding in the fall

I first met Maggie at a wedding I shot some years ago, and when she reached out to me to shoot her wedding this fall in Red Deer I was pumped. She’s such a wonderful person, I knew she would be a lot of fun to have in front of the lens again, and hoped the best when I met her fiancee Dave. He is cut from the same cloth, and the two of them make an awesome duo. We had a lot of fun during our engagement session earlier this spring – and it was no different at their wedding this fall in Red Deer. I’d only once shot in Red Deer before, and was excited to get back up to do some more exploring during my scouting trip. I scoped the venues (a last minute change was a blessing in disguise for the ceremony), and knew these two were so easy going they’d be up for anything I could throw at them – including hiking through the woods to reach an abandoned cabin that caught my eye. The fall colours were everywhere and the warm day made for perfect shooting conditions. Maggie and Dave rocked it – and threw an incredible party for their amazing families and great friends – a big highlight to my summer of shooting!!_D3X6695 _D3X6710 DSC_8129 DSC_8192 DSC_8145 _D3X6748 DSC_8269 DSC_8460 DSC_8347 DSC_8496 DSC_8575 DSC_8601 DSC_8655 DSC_8685 DSC_8678 DSC_8766 _D3X6820 DSC_8740 DSC_8702 _D3X6873 DSC_9178 DSC_9331 _D3X6940 _D3X6971 DSC_9534 DSC_9394 DSC_9542 _D3X7105 DSC_0034 DSC_0045 DSC_0154 DSC_0219 DSC_0235 DSC_0290 DSC_0324 DSC_9731 DSC_9782 DSC_9819 DSC_9924 DSC_9975 DSC_9993 DSC_0372 _ND86290 _ND86310 _ND86434 _ND86411


Lindsay & Mike – Esession on the newly opened St. Patricks Island

 

 

Just a few teasers from a wicked fun shoot I had with Lindsay & Mike before the leaves fell in Calgary – their wedding is gonna be FUN!!!!!DSC_2186 _D3X9286 DSC_1529 DSC_1595 DSC_1660 DSC_1674 DSC_1687 DSC_1730 DSC_1794 DSC_1855 DSC_1962 DSC_2004 DSC_2058 DSC_2130 DSC_2141


Sara & Brendon – Beautiful Wedding in Okotoks, Alberta

 

Sara & Brendon’s wedding this summer was so special – with an incredible amount of personal touches at every turn. I knew that it would be a fun shoot, and these guys delivered a day I won’t soon forget. Heading out to Okotoks, just south of Calgary, I was facing a pretty chilly day with rain in the forecast. But, but some lucky break the rain held off long enough for us to tour around without the umbrellas in tow. Their wedding ceremony and reception was held at the Crystal Ridge golf course – which includes a full 18-hole mini golf course that we got to take advantage of. I think that’s a first for a wedding day shoot for me! We hopped in the limo for a tour around this small community and had a great time – I couldn’t believe how fast the time was used up before we were heading back for the reception. Thank you Sara & Brendon for letting me hang out with you on your wedding day!!
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Carey & Nick – The Wedding on a Boat

This summer I was asked by Carey & Nick to shoot their amazing wedding out in Banff, on a boat no less. The morning drive out was a mixed bag of clouds and rain, and the weather forecast for the rest of the day was not looking great. While she was getting her hair and makeup done at one of my favourite little hotels in Banff, The Juniper, the hail was coming down outside. But by some wedding-day-miracle, the clouds parted as we left the hotel for Lake Minnewanka and gave us a gorgeous blue sky backdrop for the cruise/wedding. It was officiated by one of the very best, Nomi Whalen, and was a ceremony I won’t soon forget. Following the cruise, champagne toasts, and family photos on the dock, we headed off for a few pictures before returning to the hotel for the reception. Such a fun day – I couldn’t be happier for Carey & Nick as they open the next chapter in their lives together!!
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