There is something magical about a destination wedding: all the people nearest and dearest to you gathering in a tropical location for a week of fun, romance and celebration. So, when Chantal and Steve chose me as their photographer, I was elated. A new bride and groom, a new exotic location to explore and a whole week to spend taking it all in through my lens…what more could a photographer ask for? I had only met Chantal and Steve through emails, telephone conversations and a brief FaceTime meeting. Originally from Winnipeg, they had recently moved to Kamloops, and I of course, am in Edmonton. So it was a huge relief when I finally met the happy couple face-to-face on the day of my arrival at the Grand Serenis, Maya Riviera resort. Chantal had invited me along to a welcome brunch with all of their guests and I happily obliged. Later that day, we met up and discussed the details of the ceremony and reception, and their plans for the week.
The day of the wedding, there was something electric in the air. The balmy breeze coming off the water lifted the delicate layers of Chantal's dress as she walked with her mother down the sandy aisle towards her beaming groom. The guests were treated to a feast for the eyes; the deep blue ocean, the waves crashing on the rocks behind the elegant tent where Chantal and Steve exchanged their heartfelt vows.
I was thrilled when Chantal decided that she wanted to give the “trash the dress” thing a try. I have had the opportunity to do many “rock the dress” shoots, but until then, had never had a bride willing to go that one step further. We set up a day and we walked around the resort taking our time to enjoy the shoot.
Eventually, we were in the sea, Chantal and Steve totally immersed in the water….and each other.
I am pretty sure that there were moments where they forgot I was even there, as they were completely enraptured. Those are definitely the “money shots”. Pure joy, love and a connection like nothing else as they tried to keep afloat in the current.