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Film Photography

Real Wedding: Jennifer & Alex Part 2 (The Wedding)

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Real Wedding: Jennifer & Alex Part 2 (The Wedding)

Where do I even begin with this one?!  I first shared a glimpse into Jennifer & Alex's incredible 3 day celebration back in the Spring, when I blogged their welcome party.  And yes, I know, I know....I had promised to share the wedding soon after, and alas it is now November.  What can I say, except wedding season happened lol!  And I truly wanted to make sure that I gave this post the time that it deserved, and have spent hours and hours pouring over the stunning images by Erich McVey, trying to narrow them down to a reasonable post length.   So here goes nothing...

Taking place in July of 2016, on Jennifer's parents private property on Salt Spring Island, Jennifer & Alex's wedding was a career highlight for me.  I wrote a lot about why, back in their welcome party post, so I won't bore you by repeating myself here. But let's just say that I couldn't be prouder of the way it turned out, and get chills every time I think back to this weekend!  The A-Team of vendors brought their (you guessed it) A-Game, and it all the hard work and planning resulted in a seamlessly executed event.  The wedding was obviously the main event of the weekend, and we held nothing back when it came to the design, food & florals!

The colours and design we incorporated throughout the wedding were heavily influenced by Jennifer’s love of design and Alex’s Asian heritage. The Chinese symbol for marriage, Double Happiness, was the inspiration behind the eclectic paper goods designed by La Happy, and the 5-course Asian fusion menu, prepared by Toque Catering, was a modern twist on the symbolic Chinese wedding dinner, something that was incredibly important to Alex’s family. Jennifer was not shy at all when it came to colour and so we used bold, bright shades throughout the florals and linen choices.   I've said it before, and I'm going to say it again: Brides, don't be afraid of colour!  This wedding is proof that it can be killer!!

One of the most special moments of the day had to be when Jennifer presented her Grandmother with her bouquet. The admiration and love that her families generation of women has for each other are inspiring, and there wasn’t a dry eye in the place! Another absolute must for Jennifer & Alex was live music. They absolutely love to party with their friends back in New York, so we brought over the best of the best, Side One, from Vancouver for the weekend to keep guests dancing well into the night.  Honestly though, there is so much good to share about this wedding, that I don't think it can be properly summed up into words.  But thanks to the genius of Erich McVey and Kismet Creative (video at bottom of post), you can hopefully get a better sense of why this one was so special.  Enjoy!

**Make sure to scroll to the bottom for the complete list of all the kick ass vendors that helped make this day so incredible!  All photos courtesy of Erich McVey Photography.

Planning/Design - French Kiss Events
Photography - Erich McVey Phototography
Videography - Kismet Creative
Catering - Toque Catering
Floral Design - Verbena Floral Design
Linens - La Tavola
Bar Rentals - Bash Specialty
Rentals - Black & White, White Events Studio
Music - Side One
Cake - Passion For Cakes
Stationery - La Happy
Hair - Conscious Hair
Makeup - Jen Clark

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In Conversation with Adrian Michael: Fine Art Photography

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In Conversation with Adrian Michael: Fine Art Photography

I've admired Fine Art Photography for many years now, what with the likes of photography celebrities, Jose Villa and Elizabeth Messina, gracing the pages of so many inspirational blogs. It wasn't until I met and got to know local fine art photographer, Adrian Michael, that I truly understood what fine art photography really is, and how film captures such breathless and ethereal images, time and time again.  With the increasing popularity of film up here in Canada, and with blogs such as Vale & Vine, that are focusing primarily on Canadian fine art photography, there is an extraordinary amount of choices for couples out there, looking to find their wedding photographer.  Everyone is looking for something different in their wedding photos, and we all have such different priorities and tastes, and so I thought it would be a good idea to have a chat with Adrian, to find out what makes film different from digital photography, hopefully allowing couples to be more educated in their options.

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{FKE} What is fine art photography, and how does it differ from traditional photography?

{AMP} I think the main factors to defining fine art photography would be natural light, film photography, and direction from the photographer.

  • Natural light - it comes in so many forms - backlight, window light, open shade, filtered light, overcast, and so on. It seems obvious to state, but it always looks natural. When used properly by the photographer, it gives images a timeless, soft and ethereal feeling.
  • Film - Natural light combined with film photography is a match made in heaven. They way film holds natural light is magical. It’s not necessary to shoot film to be a “fine art photographer” but digital lacks the ability to hold as much detail in both the highlights and shadows of an image, and a digital image sensor just can’t produce the depth that you see in film. Film is magical!
  • Direction - Fine art photography is the artist inserting themselves into a situation. They give a lot of guidance to the subject, and craft images with thought, attention to detail, and with a vision. This doesn’t mean they don’t capture candid moments - but they know when to step in to turn a good image into a great image.
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{FKE} What inspired you to begin to shoot with film?

{AMP} I started shooting film because that was my only option at the time! I got my start in photography in 2001, and film was the standard back then. I did switch over to digital in 2006, when it seemed like film was doomed to go extinct. But I just didn’t care for it and switched back to film a couple of years later. The colours and natural grain of film are just so beautiful to me, and a digital camera just doesn’t measure up - no matter how many mega pixels!

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{FKE}What are your favourite things/moments to capture during the wedding day?

{AMP} This is a tough question! Every wedding is so different and presents itself with unique moments and events. But to categorize, I have been loving groom portraits lately. Sometimes the spotlight shines so brightly on the bride that the groom takes a backseat on the big day. It’s his big day, too! I like to make sure he gets great portraits. I love the bridal portraits so much too, right after she’s donned her dress. There is so much anticipation and excitement - they always make for album worthy photographs. I also love the walk down the aisle after the ceremony. It’s such an iconic moment, the first steps as husband and wife - huge smiles, high-fives, confetti flying - a moment of pure joy and happiness, and that photo is one that will stay in an album or on their mantle for the rest of their lives.

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{FKE}How does the editing process differ from digital photography?

{AMP} This is one of my favourite things about shooting film. When I shot digital, I would spend countless hours staring at my computer, editing colour and contrast to every photo. But now, I send the film to my lab where the develop and scan it. The scanning is so important. I have a colour profile with my lab, and they scan each negative to make sure the colours and contrast match up just the way I like them. Then they send me the scans online, and ship the negatives and proof prints in the mail. My clients get the proof prints and the scans. This is very important to me: I want them to see the photographs printed on paper before they look at the digital files. This is film’s biggest advantage - it looks SO amazing when printed. I also think it’s so much better to flip through prints than looking through your photos by hitting an arrow on a keyboard. It’s tangible, and warm and so much more real and meaningful than a cold computer screen.

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{FKE} Where do you see fine art photography going, in the wedding world?

{AMP} Fine art photography is a force in the wedding industry, and seems to only get stronger each year. Especially in the US and Europe. It’s finally starting to catch on in Canada. It’s not just a trend, film is here to stay. It fits the aesthetic of a wedding day so perfectly. For couples that are looking for timeless and crafted images, it is the perfect option.

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 To see more of Adrian Michael's work, please check out his blog, as well as his most recent features (alongside FKE) on Vale and Vine,here and here.

*All images in this post, courtesy of Adrian Michael Photography

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