I first met Stephen and Vivian nearly a year and a half ago. They had just gotten engaged and were eager to secure me as their Toronto wedding photographer. Stephen and Vivian were very anxious to attend their complimentary engagement session and I was just as excited to shoot it!
When it comes to choosing a location for engagement photos, you basically have 3 options:
- Choose a location that is very different than the location you have chosen to do your wedding photos. (Ie: wedding photos going to be in a park? Then take your engagement photos somewhere architectural!)
- Choose a location that would be impossible to get to on your wedding day. (ie: Want to take photos are your families old farm that is 1-hour away? No time on the wedding day – but a great idea for an engagement shoot!)
- Do a dry run. Choose the same location for your engagement photos as you plan on having for your wedding photos.
Stephen and Vivian chose option #3: the dry run. We took their engagement photos as Guildwood Park in the spring and the couple also opted to not only do their wedding photos there, but have the entire ceremony there, too! (If you’ve ever been to Guildwood Park, you’ll know that the massive amphitheater there is an ideal place for a wedding!) Curious to know why they would choose the same location for 2 photoshoots? Stephen & Vivian were planning a Western/Chinese (mixed theme) wedding. She would be wearing a traditional white western wedding dress for the ceremony and photos but changing into her traditional red Chinese dress for the reception. Vivian wanted photos in the park while wearing the traditional Chinese dress – so she wore it for the engagement photos! An efficient and effective use of an engagement session: brilliant!
My day started off with the girls getting ready, followed by a mid-afternoon ceremony and photos at Guildwood Park. After photos were finished, we headed back to the hotel for an outfit change (into the traditional Chinese dress) and for the door games!
If you aren’t familiar with Chinese wedding games, the door game is quite simple (yet very entertaining!). When the groom arrives to pick up the bride, she remains safely inside the house while her bridesmaids stay at the door and make several series of demands that the groom must fulfill in order to finally see his bride. The bridesmaids may ask for the groom to do push-ups, sing love songs or don funny costumes. Once the groom (and his groomsmen) comply to the satisfaction of the bridesmaids, they finally grand him permission to see his bride! Photographing the door games was so much fun; truly an experience that I will never forget.
Our evening concluded with a traditional Chinese banquet as well as a dance between the newly weds. All in all, it was a truly spectacular day for Stephen and Vivian and I wish them many years of joy and love! Thank you for putting your trust in me to be there on your very important day, and to capture all of your memories.