63 : Chris and Kate
Before the wedding starts, I make the time to scout out three shooting locations for the wedding party: a wide lush hedge, a large impressive brick wall, and a desaturated yellow building. I lead Chris and Kate to the yellow backdrop, the quirky texture of corrugated metal more reminiscent of buildings in a northern city like Reykjavik than the suburbs of Toronto. As I prepare for the shot, Chris grabs Kate's hand in that beautiful moment of awkward hesitation before people get comfortable in front of my lens. And in that moment, Chris does a simple thing: he kisses Kate's nose. I don't mean a gentle kiss, the type that bespeaks care and tenderness. I'm talking about a totally obnoxious, nose-crushing kiss. And it's perfect, Kate loves it. Any uncertainty in front of my lens has evaporated.
Throughout my day photographing Chris and Kate's wedding, I'm struck by these little moments of connection, apparent signs that these two are orbiting on a planet of their own. In a moment where one of them looks a bit nervous, the other quietly comes and takes their hand. When talking with a group, they add complementary details to each other's anecdotes. And in those moments out of the spotlight, they share silly moments in a kind of language of their own, erupting in laughter.
I've been reflecting a lot lately on my role as a photographer to elicit the organic emotions of my subjects and authentic interactions between them (for a little light reading click over to this post by photographer Corinne Alexandra or this post by photographer Ben Sasso). With the vibe of Chris and Kate and their massive wedding party, it just didn't make sense to elicit serious, reflective poses; every time I did, the result was half of the wedding party erupting in laughter or making goofy faces. So I embraced and adjusted to the playful atmosphere so that the wedding photos would reflect the energy Chris and Kate have as a couple. I mean, sure, when Chris kissed Kate, half of her nose was smooshed against his lips. But it's beautiful, it's authentic and it's them.
This Toronto wedding was photographed by Montreal wedding photographer Selena Phillips-Boyle of Life by Selena Photography. To see more of her work, you can also see this Montréal Old Port Wedding, this Toronto Island wedding, or this Adirondack Mountain wedding. Selena often travels for projects, and accepts commissions worldwide, and you can contact Selena with an interesting project!
Dress: Josy's Bridal Boutique
Rings: gifts from grandparents and great-grandparents
Bride's Hair: Anthony's Hair Styling
Groom's Hair: Gold Scissors Barber Shop
Ceremony Music: Elaine Wall
Reception Music: Aaron Roopnarine
Officiants: Carolyn Smith and David Reid
Venue: Universal Unitarian Church of Mississauga