December 19, 2007

Trash the Dress in Mayan Ruins and Tulum beach

On my 25th birthday on November 25th I left Toronto for my second time trip to Mayan Riviera this year. It was fun having my friends joining me for this trip to celebrate my "Champagne Birthday" and spending the whole week with them.
Ok, lets not forget the real reason why I came to Mexico. I met Osi and Juan at "Bridal Bash" organized by Megan Crouse. Megan is Toronto-based destination wedding specialist and travel agent. Coupe weeks later I got a call from Osi asking me if I was interested to photograph her wedding in Mexico in two months. Sure, I am always ready for travel and the first time I met this couple I though they would be great to work with and I was right.
We decided to trash one of Osi's wedding dresses a couple of days before the wedding. I had this idea of having Mayan Ruins as a backdrop and I could vision it too. Note to all photographers -  you must have a permit to shoot in one of the archeological sites/ruins in Mayan Riviera. First we tried to get to famous Tulum ruins, but we were told that there was some kind of government event and nobody was let in  (and we even saw the solders patrolling the area around). 
Oh, forgot to tell you - Osi and Juan are Spanish speaking which helped a lot to find out that there are some ruins in area that tourists do not know of. We were told to go to Xel-ha archeological site. 
Osi, Juan and myself sneaked in for an hour to do first part of "Trash the Dress" session at this great location. And of course we were respectful to the Mayan legacy. This site offered lots  of great locations for photographs - giant trees and ruins were perfect to get some romantic shot of Osiris and Juan. The only thing that bothered us were mosquitos!
Our second stop was Tulum beach - beautiful turquoise water and powder-like white sand.  So far I have only seen a beach this beautiful in two other locations - Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands and Holguin, Cuba.
Osi and Juan are so easy going - they would do anything I would ask them to do - run, jump, lay on sand and wait for the big wave to come and cover them :)  
The night before this trash the dress photosession I ordered a bottle of champagne to my room and brought it to the beach to use in my pictures  (I also thought champagne would make the  bride and groom more relaxed).
It was really cool photographing Osi and Juan opening bottle of champaine while waves would cover, move and push them ;-)

September 28, 2007

Destination Wedding in Portugal

In September this year I traveled to Europe to shoot John and Arlene's wedding in Portugal. They decided to get married in Algarve - the southernmost region of Portugal known for glorious year-round sunshine and excellent sandy beaches. Most guests travelled from Canada and stayed together with bride and groom in beautiful Villa Lusitana in Carvoeiro, Lagoa.

On Sept. 6 John and Arlene got married in very old church called - Igreja De Santa Maria in Lagos. Prince Henry the Navigator lived in this city (Lagos) and was buried in the same church in 1460.

Right after ceremony we drove along coastline to rugged cliffs called Ponta da Piedade. This place is know as the Golden Coast (Costa d'Oiro), because of its yellowish tone of the cliffs. This was one of the most amazing spots to take pictures.

As for final destination for pictures we stopped at Carvoeiro - a charming town with cliffs on either side, small beaches and private villas. We were looking for some small town scenery and this one was perfect - whitewashed houses with doors and windows framed in yellow and blue and old quaint small houses tucked in between the more modern ones.

Guest were all at the villa enjoying the cocktail hour and waiting for bride and groom. When we arrived just before the dinner John and Arlene had their first dance.

All I can say it was really nice wedding with European chic!

P.S. I want to thank Monika W (my friend who went to photography school with me) to referring me to Arlene and John and giving me this great opportunity to travel to Portugal and shoot their wedding!

August 17, 2007

The Sleeping Beauty in the Wood

I was inspired by fairy tale "La Belle au Bois dormant" (Sleeping Beauty) when shooting Lucy in the wood.