Thursday, April 28, 2016

jenna + phil | expecting!

Jenna & Phil are having a little baby in a few short weeks! Well, maybe not "little." She was told, just like I was, that the baby was a pretty healthy size. I reassured her that big babies eat better, sleep better, and the chubby cheeks are to die for. 

Boy or girl -- they can't wait to find out :) After seeing their beautiful new home, I am so excited to head back over there and photograph the new baby once he or she comes. It's amazing how a teeny little baby can make a home feel "full." For now though, enjoy a few of my favourites from their pre-baby session: 

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

an off-season recap

It's no secret: wedding photography is a seasonal business. You're either lounging around in your pjs answering emails (Winter), or racing between gorgeous wedding venues in your Saturday-best (Summer). The off-season is the time to reflect on the previous wedding season, figure out what worked, what didn't, and how you could possibly make for a better client experience next year. 

Now that my first wedding of the year is just around the corner, it's time to look back on how I've spent the last few months!

We did a major bedroom makeover! The walls were beige, the furniture was black, the decor was sorely lacking. Fast forward three busy weeks and now EVERYTHING IS WHITE! The #painteverythingwhite hashtag on Instagram is a great place to get inspiration. 

Since I still have a few finishing touches to make before photographing the outcome, I'll share my Pinterest board here to give you an idea:

While we were in Oakville visiting my brother and his fam, Ryan and I picked up The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo. If you haven't read this book, I would totally recommend it! We've been picking away at the clutter in our home and getting rid of so much stuff. I made a pile of things to sell on Kijiji and I was blown away with how quickly and easily I sold most of it! Less clutter means more room for the things that bring joy.

As of yesterday, the latest Blurb book has been ordered! If you haven't seen the albums I make for our family, let me catch you up:

I work on these books every month so that they're ready to order every 6 months. The one that's on a truck and headed my way will span from November to April 2016, featuring our first Christmas as a family of four, a weekend in Oakville, Cooper's 2nd birthday party, and everything in between. 

Here's a shot of the cover :)

This post would not be complete if I didn't mention attending the Engage wedding show in February! What an honour to be surrounded by such talented folks in the wedding industry. The walls for my booth were built in a hurry way back in 2011 as I prepared for my first show. Obviously my business has changed and grown since then, and I'll fondly remember Engage as the last time I ever used them. A new booth will be built sometime this year :)

This next one pleases my accountant husband: I'm now using a Canadian company to design my wedding albums. FINALLY! The rising dollar was one of my reasons to seek a new company, but I'm also thrilled with the updated look and design. Updating the album website was the next task and that's also done :)

Last but not least, I hosted my first two workshops. It seems crazy to type that because I didn't think the workshop goal would come true for at least another couple years. I'm having a great time teaching beginners how to use their fancy new cameras, and I'm excited to see how the workshopping will evolve over the years!

I designed the Bridal Guide during this off-season, and I'm super proud of it! It feels good to give my brides a little something to take home from the consult when we meet. 

Gifts for my 2015 brides and grooms were pretty adorable and really well received. These little surprises are so much fun to bestow, and by switching up the gifts from year to year, it always stays fresh. 

You can't set goals for the off-season without setting goals for busy season as well. So here we go, a few things I want to do this Summer:

- book off 3 full weekends to just enjoy the weather!
- head up to the cottage. preferably twice :)
- keep up with my with super speedy turnaround time for wedding clients 
- go on some adventures with the kiddos
- fill each seat for the next 3 workshops
- find the time to barre 3 times a week
-update the website with new wedding photos throughout the Summer

Tuesday, April 5, 2016

the dailey method second annual photoshoot

It has been a year since I last took photos for The Dailey Method Barre Studio and a whole lot has changed. First, Sarah and Jamie's team has DOUBLED in size. That part alone makes me smile! Their staff is an extension of what TDM Ottawa stands for: passion, joy, and the ultimate desire to help people. The reason the Dailey Method community IS a's because of the team. 

Second, they are going strong on year two. Sarah and Jamie are constantly working to make sure barre classes stay fresh, with new equipment, new moves, and new music. I can't honestly say I've never done the same class twice. I know how much energy it takes to keep a small business thriving, and these two are HUSTLING.

Oh, and not sure if this counts as "thirdly," but the mats are grey instead of orange. WOAH.  

I'm so proud to call the barre studio my second home, and to be their "in house" photographer is an honour I hope to keep :) This post is going to be a long one, so make yourself a cup of tea, change into your yoga pants, and take a peek at the Dailey Method family making magic. 

This picture of Sarah. She is actually this beautiful in real life, you guys.

Sarah S! My Friday morning cheerleader. She's the one who tells me if I climb the rope, there's a glass of wine at the end. I lovingly call her "Fun Pants."

Stephanie is one of the Dailey Method's newest teachers <3

Oh yeah, and she happens to be Sarah's sister if you couldn't already tell :)

Speaking of new teachers, here they are! My newbies! I made them walk and chat a hundred times to get this shot, and I love them for it.

Moriana is a theatre student and a ray of sunshine. I took my very first class with her about a month ago and LOVED it! 

Mariah. Funny, funny, Mariah. She can be caught dancing and singing behind the scenes of almost every photo in this blog post. She's good times.

The beautiful Sarah W. <3 I adore her, and the sweet little relationship between her daughter, Cora, and my man, Coop. Also, if you're wondering who is behind the gorgeous braid pictured here, one word: Showpony.  

Kelsey is my polkaroo. I kind of don't believe she actually teaches at TDM, since I've only ever seen her at photo shoots... Really though, I should probably take an evening class at some point just so that I know she's real :)

And last but CERTAINLY not least: the man, the myth, the legend...Jamie Rigby. He looks good in a t-shirt, but wait until you see him in a man-tank (sorry Sarah, couldn't resist.) He can be found puttering in the office, smiling at the front desk, or gettin' on with his bad self at the Beyonce workshop. 

But above all that, he's one half of the power couple that is Sarah & Jamie. 

These new bands have been a killer addition to barre classes. I get excited every time we use them :)

Laughing at some behind the scenes phone photos that were going around :)

In case you were confused, yes there are 3 Sarahs. Here they are alphabetically.

Rumor has it there's a 30 DAY CHALLENGE coming up in the near future! In a 30 Day Challenge, each of us decides how many classes we want to do per week, or as a total for the 30 days. There's a MASSIVE board where we chart our progress, a ton of friendly competition, and some pretty great prizes. 

Get excited, barre people.

These last few photos were taken during the team meeting. I just love seeing the group in their element :)

To the whole team at The Dailey Method, thank you for having me
 on this beautiful Saturday afternoon :) You were all such great sports when I
 asked you to hold planks for minutes and squat even lower for the perfect shot. 
I appreciate you ALL! <3