I have a deep respect for the industry that is hospitality. From the wait staff, to the bartenders, managers and chefs, these people truly are the backbone to the maintenance of happiness in my life.
Food and beverage have always played a major role growing up, whether it was family dinners at home, trial-and-errors of cooking for myself, and the eventual profound appreciation of creating cocktails for my loved ones (and of course, myself). Having bartended and worked in the industry my whole life, I would have to say I am well versed in the life of this amazing industry.
Due to my embedded presence in this world, I was very fortunate to photograph many amazing bars and restaurants throughout Vancouver; big players such as L'abattoir, Cin Cin, Chambar and Tacofino to name a few. I have also had the joy of shooting on numerous occasions for "The Alchemist" magazine, providing content, meeting distillers and barfolk from all around Greater Vancouver.
Here are a few snaps from some of my favourite restaurants and bars.
Everyone connects to music some way or another. I was lucky enough to be brought up on a variety of influences (thanks Mom & Dad). I have always enjoyed going to live shows, whether it was a small garage band, or a huge festival in the middle of nowhere. Just get me to a place where I can tap my foot and nod my head.
Jon, Bibi & V
They received news that their time in Vancouver was almost up. After 5 years of living here and making Vancouver their home; Jon, Bibi and Valentina were making their way back to America.
With a mixture of emotions, they decided that they wanted a little momento of their time in the city they loved. They loved Vancouvers' mountains. Her waters, streams and ocean. The vast forests of Stanley Park and the overall pristine beauty that breathes in this city.
We ventured off for a good view. We decided to trek out to Spanish Banks and watch the sun fall over the mountains and water. With a picnic blanket in hand and an excited Valentina, we skipped rocks and allowed the water to lap at our bare feet. We soaked in Vancouver one last time.
We gazed off into the view of the North Shore, letting the city sink into us. Vancouver, you are stellar...and you sure have some fans x
Italian love affair
In Trebisacce, a small coastal town in Southern Italy, my new found friend Emi and I were getting familiar with Aperol Spritzes. We were blushing as old men tried to buy us drinks, and we couldn't help but fall in love with the Italian culture.
Scents of lemon replaced my familiar Vancouver smells. Marble graced every walkway, literally marbled like the prosciutto that we got accustomed to eating every morning. Fresh gelato was our dessert, and wine for lunch... why not? Viva Italia!
Lighthouse & a Lightfoot
Michelle came to me and asked if I did family portraits. "I mostly focus on candid", I thought to myself, and shuttered at the idea of a posed-all-matching family. She must have sensed my apprehension and added, "I want it as natural as possible. No posing. Just me and my family having a good time with one another. We don't have anything like that...and I want something to remember for down the road."
Michelle was the Daughter, and I couldn't help but feel proud and happy that she had asked me. In fact, wondered how I myself had never organized a family shoot for my own family!
We agreed to meet up on a Fall day and climb up through Lighthouse Park; an area they were now introducing to me for the first time. Michelles Dad was cracking jokes the whole time as we wandered through the forest. We finally reached the top and looked over the ocean onto beautiful Vancouver. It was but a speck on our horizon.
Michelle smiled and grabbed for her bag. She pulled out some cute little glasses and a bottle of red. Before we knew it, the bottle was open and flowing. Michelle and her family laughed, reminisced, drank and for a moment, I felt like I had become a part of the family.
Just a few snaps of love.
I was told by a teacher back in the day, that if I ever became a wedding photographer, that I "failed in life". You can imagine the horror I felt when I was asked to shoot my first wedding. However, it was the day that I found what I truly love to do. I could not imagine a more perfect job for me. It is an honour to be a part of such a special and beautiful day. To be let into the most intimate part of a couples life.
I am so happy that I get to be surrounded by love.
Thank you to all of the couples that have embraced me into their lives and for letting me capture the sparks.
It is also a dream of mine that one day soon, people can, without discrimination, marry whomever they choose.
Love is love. x
Daniel & Kara
Ok, so you really couldn't get any cuter than these guys.
Daniel and I became friends in film school, back in the day. When I found out that he had met Kara, I was thrilled to discover that she was smart, funny, beautiful and sharp as a tack. They were actually two peas in a pod and couldn't be more right for eachother. Ugh! Too cute!
We decided that we would run away for the weekend to the Sunshine Coast. Along the way, I captured their cute little moments; being goofy, having fun, and unapologetically showing their love for one another.
Here's a few snaps of our weekend.
Shani & Silas
Mariko had been covered up by her uniform every time I saw her, and if she had never told me, I would never guessed that she was expecting. Her small frame and delicate figure somehow hid her baby-bump from all eyes.
One day she told me she wanted photos. She wanted maternity photos. The only maternity photo I could think of was the one Anne Leibovitz did of Demi Moore back in the day. Such was the orginal inspiration of this shoot, however, Marikos tranquil beauty brought it to a whole different level. How this Mom-to-be could look so calm on a freezing Vancouver afternoon (yes it was winter), is beyond me.
It was then I knew she wasn't only going to be a great Mom, but she was going to be a calm warrior mother.
To Emma x
Sam and I met almost 10 years ago on a back-packing trip through South East Asia, somewhere in northern Thailand. This fun-loving Australian was a breath of fresh air and a total joy to be with.
My first real memory of him was when we were trekking through some vast jungle in the middle of nowhere, somewhere outside of Chiang Mai. It was a hot and humid walk, people were getting tired and hating the flies that were following us. Just when we were on the verge of not enjoying this serene natural beauty of mountains, palms and ferns (due to said flies and heat), Sam began belting out the most beautiful operatic song I had ever heard and it stopped us all in our tracks. His voice echoed beautifully through the jungle, dancing on all the leaves, and serenading the vastness that was before us. We have remained friends ever since.
Bike trip with my Pops
I don't often put a lot of personal photos out there, but this trip was very special to me. My Dad (Dooda) and I decided to get on a motorcycle in Vancouver and take a roadtip down to 'Merica. It was one of the best roadtrips I've ever been on.
Of course my Dooda and I had always spent time with eachother, but it was always with the rest of the fam damily. This was the first time it was just me and my pops. On the road. Just the two of us.
I guess as we get older, we realize how similar we are to our parents; where we get our little mannerisms, sense of humour and perhaps why we are who we are. I have to say I am a pretty lucky gal, cause my Dad is rad.
There were times we enjoyed our silence, other times where we roared in laughter, and other times, we somehow simultaneously did both. I surely get my sense of humour from him. I discovered that we both are suckers for tequila and a game of horseshoes, and always love putting a smile on a strangers face. We did that a lot on this trip.
We would wake up early ( I am not a morning person), put on our gear, hit the road and enjoy the weaving roads of the north west. We avoided the 'super-slab' (highway) as much as we could, preferring the winding roads of the back country. The roads were dotted with potholes (keeping us on our toes), and the air was fresh and clean.
It was on this trip that I finally cemented in my mind that I need a bike. I am so happy that I have this trip in my memory and look forward to many more trips to come. Love you Dad! xox