Blog

Recent weddings, engagements, and other stuff happening at Stephen K Lee Photography.

Sarah & Andrew: Pacific Spirit Park E-Session

The countdown begins! Just a handful of weddings left before the end of the year. Now that things are slowing down a bit, I can finally give some much needed attention to my blog.

Remember that crazy foggy week we had back in October? Sarah and Andrew scheduled their engagement session for that week. They originally wanted a sunny day, but the fog was much too cool looking to pass up. It was my first time shooting at Pacific Spirit Park, but definitely not the last.

Looking forward to their wedding in December!

Vancouver engagement session - Pacific Spirit Park
Vancouver engagement session - Pacific Spirit Park
Vancouver engagement session - Pacific Spirit Park
Vancouver engagement session - Pacific Spirit Park
Vancouver engagement session - Pacific Spirit Park
Vancouver engagement session - Pacific Spirit Park
Vancouver engagement session - Pacific Spirit Park
Vancouver engagement session - Pacific Spirit Park
Vancouver engagement session - Pacific Spirit Park
Vancouver engagement session - Pacific Spirit Park
Vancouver engagement session - Pacific Spirit Park
Vancouver engagement session - Pacific Spirit Park

Our DIY Wedding Stationary

Today's post is all about the stationary that we made for our own wedding!

We had a destination wedding last month in Cabo San Lucas. A large part of our budget was spent on guest suites and the reception. So to save money on the stationary, we decided to do all of it ourselves. I have my skills as a photographer and my wife has quite the eye, but aside from that, neither one of us is particularly crafty. Armed with a printer, paint brushes, and a glue gun, we hoped for the best. We spent months designing, printing and reprinting. Having spent so much time on everything, we just couldn't bring ourselves to leave anything behind after the wedding, so we brought it all back with us to Vancouver. Check it out!

mexican diy destination wedding - welcome cards

These are the welcome cards that we placed in each guest suite. It's hard to tell in these pictures, but the paper is a textured fine art paper. All of our stationary was printed at home on a typical ink jet. Like most of the stuff we made, we tried to keep the design clean.

mexican diy destination wedding - welcome cards

We used turtles to represent the time it took us to get to the alter - 12 years!

mexican diy destination wedding - welcome cards
mexican diy destination wedding - welcome cards
mexican diy destination wedding - welcome cards
mexican diy destination wedding - menus
mexican diy destination wedding - menus
mexican diy destination wedding - table numbers

Our table numbers - simple wooden boards with square dowels sandwiched on each side to hold them up; hand painted, glued, and stapled. Painting inside the lines was the trickiest and most time consuming part. We skipped number 4, because it's bad luck. Number 8 was snatched by a guest who admired our handiwork.

mexican diy destination wedding - table numbers
mexican diy destination wedding - table numbers
mexican diy destination wedding - guestbook

We made a poster for our guests' thumbprints. We kept it simple by using our silhouettes instead of fancy drawings... mostly because I can't draw. I took photographs of us jumping and cut them out in Photoshop. We made two copies just in case something happened to the first (in fact, we had backups for almost everything). It also fits an Ikea frame perfectly :)

mexican diy destination wedding - guestbook
mexican diy destination wedding - thank you cards
mexican diy destination wedding - thank you cards
mexican diy destination wedding - thank you cards
mexican diy destination wedding - thank you cards
mexican diy destination wedding - thank you cards
mexican diy destination wedding - thank you cards

For our thank you cards, we stuck to the silhouette and chevron theme. Note the addition of our pelican friend. While exchanging our vows on our wedding day, a pelican landed next to us and hung out with us for most of the ceremony. My parents were so happy, because they thought it was a stork.

mexican diy destination wedding - stationary

Instead of a seating chart, we made faux Polaroids. Since my wife and I met in high school, we thought it would be fitting to use high school photos of all our guests - find your face to find your table! Embarrassing? Yes, but it definitely got everyone talking and laughing. Only two Polaroids are pictured. The rest were taken home by guests. Also not pictured are tiny little wooden blocks that we used to stand up each picture. It took forever to saw slits through 46 of those tough little blocks, but thankfully we got help from my Mom and Dad, who are always eager to help. Thanks!

 

Rinko & Kevin: Olympic Village "Engagement" Session

Rinko and Kevin are one of the sweetest couples I've worked with. They came to me with a request - they'll soon be in a long distance relationship and wanted to do something fun and special for their last week here in Vancouver together. They're not engaged, but they wanted an engagement style shoot to commemorate their time here. We chose to do the session at Olympic Village. Despite being rained in during the morning, the afternoon turned out great. It rains 364 days a year here, but on the one day that it doesn't, Vancouver surprises us with the most gorgeous light ever.

*As promised, these are all shot with my new D800Much slower fps, but not necessarily at bad thing as I already shoot too many frames in general. A wonderful camera to shoot with so far.

Engagement session at Olympic Village in Vancouver
Engagement session at Olympic Village in Vancouver
Engagement session at Olympic Village in Vancouver
Engagement session at Olympic Village in Vancouver
Engagement session at Olympic Village in Vancouver
Engagement session at Olympic Village in Vancouver
Engagement session at Olympic Village in Vancouver
Engagement session at Olympic Village in Vancouver
Engagement session at Olympic Village in Vancouver
Engagement session at Olympic Village in Vancouver
Engagement session at Olympic Village in Vancouver
Engagement session at Olympic Village in Vancouver
Engagement session at Olympic Village in Vancouver
Engagement session at Olympic Village in Vancouver
Engagement session at Olympic Village in Vancouver
Engagement session at Olympic Village in Vancouver
Engagement session at Olympic Village in Vancouver
Engagement session at Olympic Village in Vancouver
Engagement session at Olympic Village in Vancouver
Engagement session at Olympic Village in Vancouver
Engagement session at Olympic Village in Vancouver

Kami & Scott: Wedding in Beautiful White Rock, BC

With all the rain we've been getting here in Vancouver, it feels like summer is finally wrapping up. It's been an awesome season. With everything that has been going on, I completely forgot to blog about Kami & Scott's wedding! I've already put some of their shots up in the portfolio, but their lovely wedding deserves the spotlight of a proper blog post. They got married in White Rock in front of an intimate gathering of family and friends. Their reception took place in one of the most gorgeous homes I've seen. Seriously, I didn't want to leave. The highlight of the night definitely went to their first dance - with Scott surprising everyone with a song that he composed himself! Thank you guys so much for inviting me to your very special day! It was a pleasure being your photographer.

Vancouver Wedding Photography of Bride Getting Ready
Vancouver Wedding Photography of Bride's Family Getting Ready
Vancouver Wedding Photography of Bride's Family Getting Ready
Vancouver Wedding Photographer - Bride Getting into Her Dress  
Vancouver Wedding Photographer - Bride Getting into Her Dress
Vancouver Wedding Photographer - Bride Getting into Her Dress
Vancouver Wedding Photography - Bride's Family
Vancouver Wedding Photography - Bride's Family
Vancouver Wedding Photographer - Groom Examining Rings
Vancouver Wedding Photographer - Kids
Vancouver Wedding Photographer - Groom at Ceremony
Vancouver Wedding Photographer - Bride Enters
Vancouver Wedding Photography at White Rock
Vancouver Wedding Photographer - Ceremony
Vancouver Wedding Photographer - First Kiss
Wedding Portraits at White Rock BC
Wedding Portraits at White Rock BC
Wedding Portraits at White Rock BC
Wedding Portraits at White Rock BC
Wedding Portraits at White Rock BC
Bride and Groom at Home
Bride and Groom at Home
Bride with Kids
Wedding Flowers
Wedding Flowers
Bride and Groom Practice Dance
Bride and Groom's First Dance
Bride and Groom's First Dance
Wedding Guests
Bride Dancing with Kids
Kids Dancing at Wedding Reception
Groom Dancing with Bride

Preparing for Your Engagement Session

So you've found a wedding photographer and you've booked your engagement session. Congrats!

Now what? 

My engagement sessions are fun and fast paced. The smiles that you see? They're real! I really do want you to have a good time. In preparation for your first session, there are a few things you can do to help make it perfect.

Picking a theme: think outside the box - camping, cooking, canoeing, climbing, crushing grapes, catching fireflies, the list is endless (and by all means, don't limit yourself to just 'C' activities either!) Any activity is going to be great for pictures. Let your imagination run wild and remember that I'm always available to bounce ideas off of. Of course, it's totally cool if you want a chilled out session just hanging out somewhere; those are great too!

Picking a location(s):  I love it when my couples pick locations that are meaningful to them. The photos instantly become more personal. If you feel a bit nervous in front of the camera, try picking locations with fewer people. You'll be that much more relaxed if no one else is around. 

Clothes: wear things that you LOVE. You should look good, but there's no need to dress up just for the sake of dressing up. Be yourself. Wear clothes that you feel really comfortable in. Don't forget the accessories. Necklaces, bracelets, ties, vests, hats. These little things can make an outfit really pop. 

Colours: are great! Don't try too hard to match your partner. In fact, exact matching outfits (think white tops and blue jeans) are probably not the best idea. Coordinated complimentary colours, on the other hand, are fantastic.  Don't know what goes together? I can help with that. Also bring some extra clothes on the day of the shoot in case things get messy.

Props: are not necessary, but can be a lot of fun. They also give you something to do with your hands if you're unsure. Meaningful props are great, but so are the whimsical classics - balloons, flowers, signs, etc.

On the day of the shoot: use it as an opportunity to pamper yourselves. Head to the spa, get your hair styled, get a massage, and relax! When getting your hair done, it doesn't need to be wedding day hair; basically, you just want to look like the best version of your normal self.

Other than that, there's isn't much more to prepare for. Don't feel pressure to practice posing at home. Part of the fun is the nervousness that you feel being in front of the camera for the first time. It's my job to make you feel comfortable and to make you look beautiful and awesome.

That does it for the most commonly asked questions. If you have anything specific to your engagement that you want to chat about, please don't hesitate to contact me. Have fun on your shoots!