With 2018 behind us, I thought it would be a great time to revisit some of my favourite family photos from the past year! I was able to capture some really amazing family photos in 2018 in and around Toronto, and here is a collection of images from some shoots I really enjoyed.
Toronto Family Photographer in 2018 | Nikki Mills Photographer
Last year, I did a lot more family photography than I have in previous years, and I absolutely loved it. In 2019, I would like to keep expanding this side of my photography business because it’s so rewarding. Mainly, I’ve been focusing on real life, in-home and lifestyle type photo sessions. I tend to avoid the sort of cheesy, posed family photos, where everyone wears the same outfit and stands together staring at the camera – it’s always nice to have some classic portraits mixed in, but I don’t think they are a photos you will treasure the same way.
Ever since I had my daughter Eve, I have felt so comfortable with kids. I really appreciate how precious these years are when they are growing up and changing so quickly. I love the idea that as our children grow older, they will be able to look back on these beautiful photos and memories from when they were young, and see how much their parents adored them.
Recently, I moved to the beaches in Toronto. Some of my favourite images are the shots I’ve taken in the area around the beach and by the water.
Meeting so many beautiful families in 2018 was really special to me. It was really rewarding to send a gallery after a session. Sometimes, during the session, parents would just see their kids acting crazy and it would feel so hectic and out of control. They’d laugh and ask, “Did you get anything?!” But, then they would see the photos — they could see all of the good stuff I was seeing during the shoot. It felt great being able to capture their lives in motion.
Documentary Family Photos
All in all, 2018 was an amazing year. If you’re looking for documentary family photos to hold on to through the years to come, please reach out. I would love to listen to your ideas and see what we can come up with.
Please don’t hesitate to GET IN TOUCH with me.
In the summer of 2018, it was such an honour to capture Lauren and Mark’s absolutely perfect Cambium Farms Wedding in Caledon, ON. The whole day was so easy going. It was wonderful to be their wedding photographer for this beautiful, relaxing Cambium Farms wedding. I’m so excited to share their story today!
Lauren and Mark’s Laid Back Summer Wedding at Cambium Farms
Lauren and Mark are an extremely fun couple. Last winter, I had a great time shooting their engagement photos at Catchacoma. It was wild going out over the frozen lake with their pup. These guys have been together a very long time and you can really see the bonds of friendship underneath their romantic relationship. They really struck me as true partners in life — goal oriented and supportive.
The entire day was just super relaxed. That’s the best way I can describe it. Lauren and Mark have an incredibly easy going way about them. They almost feed off of each other’s positive vibes. It was definitely clear why they chose Cambium Farms as their place to tie the knot.
Cambium Farms is an absolutely beautiful venue. The Barn is so warm and inviting and the outdoor ceremony space couldn’t be more perfect. It rests on a lush 50 acres in the heart of the gorgeous Caledon Hills. Dating all the way back to the early 1800’s, Cambium farms has hung on to that original charm that made it what it is today. It really was the perfect place for Lauren and Mark’s wedding!
Sunny Summer Day Weddings with Nikki Mills
I LOVE June weddings. And the fields at Cambium Farms were so lush and green, we just had to get evening sunset shots. Everyone was having a great time hanging out outside, enjoying the perfect summer night. There was a photo booth installed on the property and it was so cool to see it getting so much use!
Lauren was such a beauty the entire day. She was glowing! It was great to see everyone so happy and excited to see this wonderful couple get married and start this new chapter of their lives together. I’m so happy I was able to be a part of it.
I just know that Lauren and Mark are going to do wonderful things together. The light and love they share is a true testament to what marriage should be all about — knowing when to take it easy when you need to and not sweat the small stuff. So Lauren and Mark, thank you for inviting me to be the wedding photographer for your big day. You’re an amazing couple and I with you nothing but the best! Cheers, you two!
Ashleigh and Adam were married on October with a ceremony and reception at The Lodge on Queen in downtown Toronto. I had such a fantastic time photographing and spending the day with Ashleigh and Adam last October as they tied the knot! Fall in Toronto can get pretty cold, but there was no chance we were going to let that get in our way.
Ashleigh and Adam’s Queen West Wedding in Downtown Toronto
What can I say? This was such a personal and beautiful wedding day. Ashleigh and Adam are two of the most down-to-earth people I’ve ever met and worked with and it really comes through in these images.
We began the day with Ashleigh as she was getting ready. She looked absolutely stunning in her wedding dress. It fit her personality so perfectly. Soon after, it was time for wedding ceremony number one. That’s right, this wedding day had TWO CEREMONIES! To be fair, this first ceremony was very small and intimate, just for immediate family and friends, so it was very special. The second wedding ceremony wouldn’t come until later in the day. And that ceremony had a larger group of friends and family. It really was such a unique and successful way to plan a wedding day.
Soon after the first ceremony, I got to follow the bride and groom (now, husband and wife!) around Toronto getting some great wedding portraits. Toronto has a lot of beautiful spots with charming, historic architecture. These two were down for anything. We took some wonderful photos in front of the backdrop of the Toronto skyline. Being their wedding photographer was so easy! It almost felt like all I had to do was stand back and point the camera as they did most of the “heavy lifting.” They were so natural together. You can truly see just how much they love each other in these images.
A Bohemian Wedding at The Lodge on Queen
Later that evening, we headed towards The Lodge on Queen for an intimate dinner with around twenty guests in total. The Lodge is an awesome little bohemian social club on Queen West that occupies two floors of a century-old heritage building in the heart of Toronto’s downtown entertainment district. Ashleigh and Adam even let me take a few photos of them in the alley behind The Lodge. I loved the way those shots came out and they are probably some of my favorite images from the day. Ashleigh and Adam could not have chosen a more perfect spot for everyone to come together.
After dinner, the rest of the extended family and friends showed up for a sort of ceremony-lite followed by the reception. This was just a great group of people. Everyone had such a good time celebrating this amazing couple’s big day. The first dance between Ashleigh and Adam was beautiful and I was able to capture a few teary eyes in the crowd on camera.
Ashleigh and Adam, thank you so much for bringing me into your world for a day and letting me capture all the wonderful moments it entailed. I wish you two the very best that life has to offer, and I can’t wait to see where the road takes you.
Featured Toronto Vendors for this Queen West Wedding
Wedding Planner: Lisa Allain
Florist: Quince Flowers
Hair & Makeup: Schulz Makeup & Beauty Studio
As always, I ended up with way too many photos in my end of the year blog post, and there are still so many photos that didn’t make it from the favourites folder, I suppose these are good problems to have. Also a lesson to blog and share more, maybe 2019 will be the year of blogging! If you don’t make it all the way to the end, no hard feelings 😉
Many clients ask me to describe my style, it’s difficult to say, I would say at the core I’m a documentary wedding photographer, but I like a bit of magic in photos and like things to look their best. Capturing the spark between people is what interests me the most. And most importantly I like some structured time for fine art portraits that show off the natural beauty of the spaces and places around you. Putting all those pieces together is how I approach a wedding, or any photos really.
Looking over these photos brings me so much joy, it reminds me of all the places I have been from spring through to the fall, so many parties and people, and new beautiful places I hadn’t seen before. I do this job with my whole heart and I feel something when I look at each of these photos. For a change I have decided to do a separate post with a small selection of family photos from 2018 as well, which should be cute at the very least 🙂
I’m a huge Brene Brown fan, and one thing she talks about is connection, and one of the ways we can feel that strongly is to witness and be a part of collective joy and pain. Weddings are full of these deeply sincere moments, and not always in the places that you think you will find them. Every one of us carries around stories of love and pain from our pasts, and it all bubbles to the surface on a wedding day. I’m always moved to see this and it draws me in again and again.
2019 is looking great, I’m feeling excited about all the new people I will get a chance to work with and meet along the way. I have a few weekends left for 2019, and I’m booking 2020 dates now. If you like my photos and what I have written, please reach out, I would love to hear from you if you’re looking for a documentary style wedding photographer.
I ended up at Nestleton Waters Inn twice this year, which is funny, I haven’t been in a few years. They do a great job hosting weddings and you can tell they really make the effort for each bride to have a perfect experience. Christine’s dress was just incredible, it was designed by Whyte Couture and her veil was just a stunning addition. I have so many photos I want to share from this wedding season that it makes my head spin, so here is one for now.