Grace and Eric. Toronto Zoo Engagement Session

Doing a shoot at the Zoo was a first for me and the space worked out pretty well and not for nothing, who doesn’t like animals?  Grace and Eric really love animals and are very knowledgeable about the Toronto Zoo itself.   I kind of wish I brought my little ones because I think these two would have been fantastic private tour guides...hehe…

I met Grace and Eric early in the morning and we started off hitting most of their favourite spots.  The background was gorgeous but the it was freezing that day...so we jumped in and out of buildings to keep warm. During the shoot I learned a great deal about various animals and other spots of the zoo that I haven’t been to before.  Shooting at the zoo was pretty tricky, a lot of high fences and shooting through glass. As more people came through, we had to be patient with the crowds and of course… the hope of getting some animals in the shot (google Kit Kat Panda commercial… that was me…haha)

To my friends Grace and Eric, thanks so much for a fun day and I am super excited to capture your big day next year. Thank you both so much and here are just a few pics from our shoot.
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1/27
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Sandra & Marty Married. Liberty Grand Wedding

Every year we have one date that is highly requested and this year, it was August 13, 2016 for us… I think we had over 12 requests for this date which is pretty nuts.  I’m honoured that Sandra and Marty booked us early last year and I got to capture this day for them.   I’ve known Marty and his family for a long time and I’m so happy that his partner in life is just as amazing as he is.

It felt like one of the hottest weekends in Toronto the day of their wedding.  They got married at the historical Metropolitan United Church - gorgeous… but had no AC which made things even hotter. After their ceremony, we did our best to jump out when it wasn’t raining too hard and capture some pics. We headed over the Liberty Grand right after and did some pictures in courtyard.  It was the perfect spot for pics with the wedding party as it had just enough overhang to keep everyone dry from the rain.  The evening portion of the wedding was perfect – great food, amazing MC and entertaining speeches.  On my end, so good seeing so many familiar family and friends.

I want to thank my friend Kevin C for shooting this wedding with me. I want to sincerely thank Sandra and Marty for having us capture your big day. Here are just a few pics we wanted to share with you as we edit the rest.

Uncle Leon =)
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Hello Baby R! Newborn Photography

I was saying to Gi the other night… if we’re blessed with another child, I wonder how hard it would be to divvy up the love?  I know it’s such a dumb question but right now… it’s so easy to give all your love to one.  The most common answer I got from all my friends is metaphorically speaking… you just grow another heart. That works for me.

M&J and their adorable daughter C and now their newborn son are a beautiful family. On the day of this shoot, M’s parent’s were in town which worked out well as they got to squeeze in a few pics and entertain the eldest daughter as we got some solo pics of baby R. At the time of the shoot, baby R was a little over a week old…. And super co-operative.  We worked on some family shots with everyone and even got a chance to hop outside quickly for a few pics.   I want to thank our mutual friend/sister Erika for introducing  me and of course especially thank M&J for having me do this session for your adorable fam.  Here are a few pics from our shoot.

Your Friend, Leon Chai

 

 

 
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1/18
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The perfect Fall shoot. Rose and Michael, Toronto engagement shoot

Hard to believe when you look at these pics that this was the Fall season but lucky for us the weather worked out amazing for their shoot. I remember this day so well…since after their shoot, I backed up their pics and jumped on a plane a few hours after.

Rose and Michael are such a chill couple and I’m honestly really happy that I got to know them at this shoot and excited for their upcoming wedding this year. On the day of this shoot, we met at Dundas Square and worked our way around the city. I thought it was pretty cool that the City Site Seeing bus let us take a few pics on their bus – thank you! Rose and Michael are really natural and comfortable with each other. They looked so good and I loved the attire that they wore. Since the weather was amazing, I figured we would switch things up from the urban Toronto look to a little water, beach and nature.

To my new friends Rose and Michael, we are stoked about your upcoming wedding this year. Thank you for choosing us and hope you like some pics from your shoot.

Your Friend, Leon
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1/28
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“Love Corporate” I say…. J&J Job Fair Event

I started out in “Corporate” 14 years ago…. (holy smoly.. talk about sounding old) and after a few years, I left the Home Depot head office…I changed directions on my path to entrepreneur type roles that lead into what I do now.  For those that know me well… I always say “love corporate”… especially when friends of mine complain about work etc… not saying the grass is not greener on the other side…but I do respect the well oiled machine of a large organization.  Johnson & Johnson is one example of a well oiled machine.

A few weeks back I was commissioned to shoot an internal J&J event that focused on succession planning within their finance department.  Surprisingly there was a ton of creative aspects to this event, as each department within the finance team had to come up with a catchy way to promote and educate the attendees.  When I talk about creative… these guys where SUPER CREATIVE… from replicating and building a “who wants to be a millionaire set” to a theater environment and a film production  that was put together in weeks.   I will never mock a finance person (or CA, since tons of my friends are CA’s) again for not understanding my creative industry since they totally rocked the show that day.

I’m glad to see J&J investing time and effort to promote succession planning within their organization – as they clearly value their people.

I’ll say it again… “Love Corporate”

Thanks, Leon
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1/11
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Mary & Jabbar Married!!

It’s hard to believe with all the rain that we have been getting lately that the weather was AMAZING only a few weeks ago.   To start off our wedding season, Mary and JB had one of the best weekends to get married.  They had both extremes with our shoots as their lifestyle session had been freezing!

Gi and I started off in the morning with Mary getting ready in a house filled with family, friends and tons of kids... all good times.  We had found some perfect places to shoot the week before, and with the great weather we knew our outdoor location would be wicked.   So after the church ceremony we were off to Sunnyside Park… I mean with the great weather how could we not utilize the water =) .   The wedding party was full of troopers, especially the ladies who climbed up rocks in their 4 inch heels, who made the moments picture perfect.

The evening was loaded with entertainment that intertwined the two cultures from Persian dances to live singing ending off the night.  Before we get to the pics, I want to thank Gi for creative direction and Kevin Chan for being my second pair of eyes behind the camera. Most importantly, I sincerely want to thank Mary and JB for having us be a part of their big day.  Here are just a handful of pics from wedding number one of 2011.

Thanks,  Leon
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