This is one of my favorite posts to write! I love looking back at the year. It’s like I finished a chapter in a book and now I get to admire everything I’ve experienced + learned. It’s also so rewarding to look at all the memories I’ve documented for others. It feels like a huge mission was accomplished. Now I get to give my eyes and hands, and well let’s face it, my whole body a break from shooting so often up until May. But there are still a lot of things happening behind the scenes every day. Always something to do and I love it! (Follow me on Snapchat to see the unflitered behind the scenes : saramonikaphoto).

Some of the places I got to shoot in 2015 were Alberta (Edmonton, Jasper),  Ecuador (Canoa), Muskoka, Caledon, Schomberg, Guelph, Hamilton, Peterborough, Elora Gorge, Centre Island, Bradford, Haliburton, Ajax, Barrie, and of course Downtown Toronto. Being stimulated by being surrounded by unique locations all the time makes me feel alive 🙂 This year is looking great too! It seems that some of my career goals such as shooting in Europe may come true! Keeping my fingers crossed!! 🙂

Let’s start with the Outtakes!

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Tia + Johnny are prone to sweaty foreheads, so this was bound to happen on their wedding day lol
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They were this excited about Wild Vines Strawberry wine 🙂
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Sometimes (most of the time) the getting ready part is’t so glamorous haha
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I think she was thirsty =P
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I think it was so good he wanted to just shove it all in his face?
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Fiance on a mission: must .get. food. out. of. his. teeth.
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Ha! This person was probably driving by thinking “WTF?”
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Annnnd the canoe tipped over, near the end of their session, and this is how they reacted <3 <3 <3 <3
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To be honest, not quite sure what happened here, but too cute not to post!

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It’s the new thing to do to members of your bridal party now. Feed them hay.
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“Ok guys, can you lay in the leaves? Ok got the shot we’re good you can get up now”….LOL
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She LOOOVES walking around barefoot and doesn’t like it when he wears socks…so..she took charge lol
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I don’t know why, but I told them to walk like elk towards the forest and they did 🙂
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Oh boy. So yea. This is what she can do with her feet LOL
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It’s not what it looks like guys I swear. There’s a microphone there lol
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And this is how couples end up looking when they are watching a movie together
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Football tackle!
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Just because he felt like it… lol
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LOL
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So Jelena fell straight on her back, but laughed the whole way through. And that’s why I love her 🙂
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STOP. HAMMER TIME
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Trespassing to get epic shots <3
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Bartenders couldn’t help it but break it down!
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A great reason to interrupt a family photo 🙂
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It was so hot that it was time to get super friendly with the fan 🙂
Toronto-Wedding-Photographer-2Oops! Fly was down! haha
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Dad just let everyone know she was going to sing for them, and this was her reaction lol
Toronto-Wedding-Photographer-29Laughed so hard that she spit up! lol
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Bottoms up yo!
Toronto-Wedding-Photographer-23Water was getting in his face at the barber shop and he couldn’t stop giggling lol
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First time I’ve seen a groom get ready from the trunk of his car! 🙂Kimberly-James-Engagement-82

Just someone biking through as they were being randomly lovey dovey with each other in the middle of the bridge lol

The Adorable
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Mom got really emotional and they shared a nice long hug for a whole minute!
Toronto-Wedding-Photographer-18Leslie reading a note from her husband to be before seeing each other <3
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The way she looked at his after their first kiss <3
The-Doctors-House-Wedding-1This is how Tia’s bridesmaids reacted to Tia dancing with her dad <3
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They got married where Savannah went to school for ballet ever since she was a little girl. They had their first dance right there on that dance floor, and when he spun her, this was her reaction <3
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Seeing Seanna in her dress for the 1st time!
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SO.MUCH.LOVE
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So excited to see her granddaughter!
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Grandma seeing Tia in her dress for the 1st time! This was a special moment for me too because she used to babysit us together all the time! Oh Nonna <3
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She was just beaming with excitement <3
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Mom feeling super emotional while seeing her daughter all dressed up to get married <3
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Cuddles <3
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It’s a special powerful moment when you’re finally all ready to go marry the partner of your dreams <3
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Sharing a laugh with her mum

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Such a sweet first kiss!
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Cuddles on the ferry from centre island while enjoy the view of Toronto + the sunset together
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Just hanging out with his bud before he has to get ready <3
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First dance in their backyard. So intimate + special!
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These two are so adorable the way they giggle with each other all the time!
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First dance <3 So romantic!
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I know Tia since we were in grade 1. To be able to be there to document her day + to see her so happy was so freakin special to me!
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These two and the golden light. Magical!
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This connection <3
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They both love to read, tell stories and have reading marathons outdoors chillin on a blanket <3
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Cuddles <3
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Just giggling away <3
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Bookworms in a bookstore <3
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He is always in such awe of her!

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The way he held her when she was a little scared of the horses <3

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They met in this EXACT spot at the bar in Gladstone Hotel

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They way they are so into each other!
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Little Rachel getting prettified for the wedding!
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And checking herself out in the mirror! Oi!
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Magical 1st kiss <3
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They have season tickets to the Ed Mirvish Theatre in Toronto. Naturally I had to document them in their element 🙂
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These two snuggling it up at a drive-in
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These two got so excited when I got us up to the top deck on the ferry to Centre Island!!
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Couples being so in love with each other at weddings <3

The Partay

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One of the brides decided to rock out with the band!Toronto-Wedding-Photographer-6

Never to early to get on the dancefloor!The-Great-Hall-Wedding-3

The groom rocking out with his band on stage at The Great Hall at his own wedding reception!! 🙂The-Great-Hall-Wedding-4The-Doctors-House-Wedding-1 (2)

Just for laughs 🙂The-Boulevard-Club-WeddingYay for sparklers!! 🙂Edmonton-Wedding-Photographer-14

Really funny speeches <3Edmonton-Wedding-Photographer-13

Bold dance moves!Edmonton-Wedding-Photographer-8Butt grabbing action. Always a good idea.Belcroft-Estates-Wedding-7

Everyone formed a circle around them for their first dance at

Just some of my faves!

Toronto-Wedding-Photographer-20Eloping at White Spruce Park!Toronto-Wedding-Photographer-22The way the wind swept through her hair <3Toronto-Wedding-Photographer-24

Goofy antics while getting ready
Toronto-Wedding-Photographer-28Torono-Engagment-PhotographerCute cuddle session in their home <3
The-Great-Hall-WeddingEveryone seeing her in her green dress for the first time! She was glowing!Schomberg-Engagamenet-ShootToronto-Wedding-Photographer-25Sister bonding time!Muskoka-Engagement-Shoot (2)Lakeshore-Engagament-ShootHe used to walk her to work every morning along lakeshore <3Jasper-Engagement-Shoot-118

Just WOW. Jasper you have our hearts!Home-Engagement-ShootFarmers-Market-EngagementThey love going to the farmer’s market every Saturday morning together <3Elora-Gorge-Engagement-18Edmonton-Wedding-Photographer-12

Running off into the sunset lolEdmonton-Wedding-Photographer-11

Edmonton-Wedding-Photographer-9The boys having breakfast before getting ready for the wedding

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Free-spirits exploring nature <3

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Having the whole Canoe Museum in Peterborough to themselves <3Ashley-Kevin-Engagement-122

A bonfire to warm up at the end of their session

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Putting on a backpack, grabbing a stick and exploring Ecuador togetherCottage-Engagement-Shoot

The cottage where they got engaged <3Ancaster-Mill-Wedding-8Ancaster-Mill-Wedding-9

Jelena laughing so hard that she was smacking the table lolDestination-Engagement-Photographer-4Destination-Engagement-Photographer-8Edmonton-Wedding-PhotographerJasper-Engagement-Shoot-2

Let’s just chop some wood to start off the session right in Jasper lolJasper-Engagement-Shoot-88Pia-Bouman-Wedding

So into each other during their first dance!Fall-Engagament-ShootSchomberg-Engagement-Shoot-4The-Great-Hall-Wedding-7

I love documenting those simple in between moments full of love + laughter
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Seeing her bride for the first time!Toronto-Wedding-Photographer-54

Little free-spirit twirling in the streets <3Toronto-Wedding-Photographer-78

They totally just did this randomly as they were walking. Seriously!? I love the people I get to photograph <3Toronto-Wedding-Photographer-89

She was feeling a little romantic during the speeches <3White-Spruce-Park-Elopement

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I can’t believe that this beautiful location is in Brampton! (White Spruce Park)

Follow me on Instagram for bonus posts! –> @saramonikaphoto

Toronto Documentary Wedding Photographer for Free-Spirited, Bohemian & Adventurous Couples – GTA, Toronto, Guelph, Vancouver, Alberta, Worldwide, International, Destination

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It has always been a dream of mine to photograph an elopement and it happened! There’s just something so raw, real and romantic to elope outside, in a location of your choice, with only your closest friends and family at your side, and focusing solely on each other. All the little touches that are added are simple and personal and inexpensive! Saves you money for your future adventures together! Experiences over possessions yo! =)

Who knew that the girl I used to play volleyball with in high school, would elope, and choose me to document their day for them! They chose to elope at White Spruce Park in Brampton where they take their dog Cooper for long walks all the time..yes this location is in Brampton! It was soo beautiful there! Leslie + Jordan have been through so so much together. The way they support each other to follow their dreams and bring tons of laughter + love into each other’s lives is adorable + inspiring. What a pure relationship filled with understanding + support. You two are hopeless romantics and I can’t wait to see where you adventures take you! =)

Flowers by: Coriander Girl

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Leslie is such a creative one with so much talent! All the details you see in the photos, she made! Diy pro over here.
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A tip from Leslie. Don’t buy a fake flower crown from Michael’s because it will make your head itch. lol. That’s why she didn’t end up wearing it for the ceremony.
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This GORGEOUS boho style flower bouquet was made by the talented Coriander Girl
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I love documenting real moments like this. These moments make up their unique story and will have something to laugh about in the future! I don’t think I’ve ever photographed a groom getting re-dressed from the trunk of his car lol =)
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Awww what a gentleman!
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How gorgeous did Leslie look!?!
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LOL! Flying Cooper!
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Aww Coop looks so happy =)
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Thank you Leslie for this note <3 It made me feel so loved! Processed with VSCO with t1 preset

Follow me on Instagram for bonus posts! –> @saramonikaphoto

Toronto Documentary Wedding Photographer for Free-Spirited, Bohemian & Adventurous Couples – GTA, Toronto, Vancouver, Alberta, Worldwide, International, Destination

Justice + Ronan’s wedding is one of the most unique weddings I’ve ever photographed. Like c’mon, she had a green wedding dress!! <3 They got married in Toronto at The Great Hall just over two weeks ago, on a Monday. Yes a Monday, how cool is that lol. With having some Irish heritage in the family, they wanted to honour that along with the Viking era that speaks a lot to them so they had a Celtic/Viking themed wedding!

My favorite part of the day was definitely their ceremony! They were so in awe of each other throughout the ceremony! The Marrying Lady did SUCH an amazing job with it. It was so personalized to them, and you could literally feel the love and positive energy beaming out of her and them. I have never felt such a peaceful feeling during a wedding ceremony before. I told her “I’m choosing you to marry me in the future. Without a doubt! You’d be so perfect”. Justice + Ronan even had a sage smudging ceremony. If you’re not familiar with smudging, it’s Native American ritual that’s is used for healing, clearing a space, spiritual purification and ceremonies. It was important to Justice because she was raised by vegan hippies who did all sorts of earth-honouring & spiritual things like that when she was growing up. She also had Tade (the officiant) bring up the honouring of Native Canadian culture because it’s important that, as white people, we don’t simply appropriate the cool/trendy aspects of their culture and fail to acknowledge the oppressive injustices & hardships that western culture has forced upon them. What a beautiful spirit.

Another favorite part of their wedding was the rock show Ronan (who’s in a band and plays guitar) and his band put on for the guests! Just WOW. WOW. WOW. I couldn’t believe how AMAZING they were. I wanted to listen to them play all night!

A huge thank you to the vendors that helped create their dream wedding into a reality!

Venue – The Great Hall

Wedding Co-ordinator – Missy McLean

Catering – Urban Acorn

Officiant – The Marrying Lady

Flowers – Victoria of Wild Oak Studio

Dress – Loversland

DJ – @wellsaid

Hair + Make-up – @jarmi

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Ronan is the owner and amazing tattoo artist at Imperial Tattoo in Toronto

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Justice is a photographer as well and photographs newborns as well as for Apartment Therapy!

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These bouquets were seriously stunning! I’ve never seen wedding bouquet’s look so unique and intricate! They were done by the amazingly talented Victoria from Wild Oak Studio!

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Seriously how clever!? “the perfect match” Oi!

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I love capturing the moments before the ceremony. There are so many emotions that are happening for the bride and I want her to remember that moment!

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She was glowing and looked soooo stunning!!! <3 Great-Hall-Toronto-Wedding-Photographer-208

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The sage smudging ceremony <3 Great-Hall-Toronto-Wedding-Photographer-216

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So much love <3 Great-Hall-Toronto-Wedding-Photographer-256

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Justice made these dreamy hula hoop dream catchers! <3 Great-Hall-Toronto-Wedding-Photographer-351

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The food was seriously incredible!! Urban Acorn created delicious vegan and vegetarian options! It’s so inspiring to know that eating healthy can still taste AMAZING.

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Ronan rocking out in his element. Hair down and all! 🙂
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Follow me on Instagram for bonus posts! –> @saramonikaphoto

Toronto Documentary Wedding Photographer for Free-Spirited, Bohemian & Adventurous Couples – GTA, Toronto, Edmonton, Alberta, Worldwide, International, Destination

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I’m soo thrilled to be sharing this video created by the wonderful Caileigh! It fills me up with so much positive emotion watching it because I feel as though Caileigh captured me perfectly and it reminds me of how far I have come since I decided to follow my heart and start my business just over 4 years ago. I’m grateful to be exactly where I am, and excited for all the growth to come! If I were choosing a photographer for my own wedding, I wouldn’t just want to read an “about me” page to get to know who they are (although I REALLY appreciate a vulnerable “about me” page). I would LOVE the chance to see a video of them. To see their personality shine and get to know what they are passionate about! To understand WHY they do what they do. This is why I wanted to create a video. To show you all who I am in a whole other dimension and for you all to get a peek into what’s it’s like on a shoot with me!

P.S. I TOTALLY fell hard off my bike trying to do a little jump during the shoot and scraped my knee and hands open. The rest of the shoot was filmed with lululemon capris and a bandage full of blood undernearth – haha!

Speaking about videos and putting who I am out there, I finally got Snapchat and share behind the scenes peaks into both my personal and work life! =) Follow me on Snapchat! >> saramonikaphoto

Follow me on Instagram for bonus posts! –> @saramonikaphoto

Toronto Documentary Wedding Photographer for Free-Spirited, Bohemian & Adventurous Couples – GTA, Toronto, Edmonton, Alberta, Worldwide, International, Destination

I met Seanna + Tim when they were part of the bridal party at Kristen + Siya’s wedding last year. Just about 3 weeks later when they were backpacking around in Guatemala and Costa Rica, they decided to splurge on a fancy hotel (instead of the hostels they had been staying at). They got an amazing room that was upgraded with 2 Jacuzzi’s and many other perks. They had a romantic day hanging out in the hot spring pools the hotel had and a really romantic private dinner. Then when they went back to the room, Tim proposed while taking advantage of their sweet Jacuzzi!

When they contacted me and said they were engaged and wanted ME to come out to Edmonton, Alberta to photograph their wedding, I was elated! Not only has it been a dream of mine to travel to Alberta, see the Rockies and ESPECIALLY Jasper, but I would be documenting THEIR day! When I met them they stole my hearts with how free-spirited and adorable they are together. I knew they would focus on making their day as unique and special as they are. They booked Partridge Hill Community Hall for the weekend where they, along with their friends and family could park their trailers, camp, and just enjoy each other’s company the whole weekend! They camped, had campfires, great music, a romantic outdoor ceremony, yummy food, dancing, lots of laughs, and each other. All perfect ingredients for the most amazing wedding weekend!

Huge thank you to the vendors that helped create their dream wedding into a reality!

Hair – Fuss of art Hair in Edmonton

Catering – The Lunch Pail Catering Company in Edmonton

Wedding Dress – Novelle Bridal Shop in Edmonton

Men’s Pants + Shirts – Simon’s

Video – Hopscotch the Globe >> WATCH HERE

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I love capturing the day exactly as it unfolds. Documentary style. How many times have these guys had a morning breakfast like this!? I’m sure they will cherish these realistic, candid photos down the line!
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Tim’s first time wearing suspenders!
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Seanna + Tim have an apple tree growing in their front yard! Free healthy food! How awesome is that!? 🙂
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I’m not quite sure how we will be taking selfies in the future, but I’m sure we’ll have the option of a hovering camera in front of our faces. I think this is a cool way for them to show their kids how we used to do it! Ha!
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What a cutie pie! One of the sweetest little girl’s I have ever met! Seanna’s niece <3 Edmonton-Wedding-Photographer-044Edmonton-Wedding-Photographer-714Edmonton-Wedding-Photographer-062Edmonton-Wedding-Photographer-064Edmonton-Wedding-Photographer-518

Rachael, Seanna’s niece, got to be a little fairy princess on her wedding day! She was so excited and checking herself out in the mirror 🙂
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Seanna’s bridesmaids <3 Edmonton-Wedding-Photographer-071

It was time for Seanna’s mom to help her with her gorgeous wedding dress from Novelle Bridal Shop . With her dress + her headpiece from Etsy, she looked like a Elf Princess from Lord of the Rings! SOO magical! <3 Edmonton-Wedding-Photographer-075Edmonton-Wedding-Photographer-522

One of her bridesmaids Kristen from Hopscotch the Globe created a beautiful video for Seanna + Tim! You can watch it HERE.
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Seanna’s first look with her bridesmaids <3 Edmonton-Wedding-Photographer-079Edmonton-Wedding-Photographer-082
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Even though it was cloudy like this all day, Seanna + Tim were not stressed whatsoever! They were getting married outside! I really think their positive outlook on life kept the rain up in the sky because it did not rain all day!!
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I LOVED this part of the ceremony! This is some great wedding inspiration right here. They wrote letters to each other, sealed them in an envelope, put them in the box along with a bottle of wine. If at any point in their relationship they are going through a particularly rough time and need a reminder of why they got married in the first place, they can open the box and read the letters to each other. If not, they are to open the box on their 10 year wedding anniversary <3 I am SO doing this in the future!Edmonton-Wedding-Photographer-122Edmonton-Wedding-Photographer-113Edmonton-Wedding-Photographer-125Edmonton-Wedding-Photographer-515

Their outdoor wedding ceremony out in the country was so beautiful!
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I’ve always dreamed of shooting wedding photos of the bride and groom in a wheat field and it happened! =)

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She changed up her hair with where the headpiece was on her head! WOW!!! <3 Edmonton-Wedding-Photographer-222Edmonton-Wedding-Photographer-224Edmonton-Wedding-Photographer-225Edmonton-Wedding-Photographer-227Edmonton-Wedding-Photographer-230Edmonton-Wedding-Photographer-234Edmonton-Wedding-Photographer-233

How cute is their little Adventurer trailer!? It made me want one!
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One of the groomsmen coulnd’t attend the wedding because his 1st baby was born the night before!! They face timed them in front of everyone during the reception and saw their little baby boy Fin for the first time <3 Edmonton-Wedding-Photographer-328Edmonton-Wedding-Photographer-325Edmonton-Wedding-Photographer-369Edmonton-Wedding-Photographer-767
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A sign of an epic night <3 Edmonton-Wedding-Photographer-374Edmonton-Wedding-Photographer-409

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Toronto Documentary Wedding Photographer for Free-Spirited, Bohemian & Adventurous Couples – GTA, Toronto, Edmonton, Alberta, Worldwide, International, Destination

@saramonikaphoto

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