Wedding at Casa Loma: a fun elopement

Karmen and Saro are extraordinary people and their connection is inspiring. They decided to celebrate their love with an elopement at Casa Loma in Toronto. Witnessed by their parents only, they were married at this gorgeous venue, where photo taking is simply bliss. I could not get enough of the setting, we explored the castle inside and out and made full use of its unique architecture and surrounding gardens.

Karmen and Saro, know that being there with you was an absolute pleasure and I wish you all the very best in your life together!
Yours, Manuela.

Casa Loma Toronto

Elegant bride at Casa Loma

Elegant bride Toronto

Bride and mother at Casa Loma

Elegant wedding at Casa Loma Toronto

Elegant groom at Casa Loma

Elegant groom Toronto

Casa Loma weddings

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Elopement at Casa Loma

Intimate wedding at Casa Loma

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Bride and groom at Casa Loma

Casa Loma wedding photos

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Casa Loma wedding photographer

Casa Loma gardens wedding

Casa Loma wedding photography

Elegant wedding at Casa Loma

Wedding couple at Casa Loma library

Wedding couple at Casa Loma Library




Engagement photos in Toronto

Martha and Vainatey are a lot of fun. They are to be married in a month and I look forward to it.
Enjoy this series of colourful engagement photos taken in the always lovely Churchill Park, an oasis of green and secret pathways.

M+V, I look forward to seeing you again soon! Manuela

Creative engagement photos

Toronto engagement photography

Toronto engagement photographer

Engagement photos Toronto

Engagement photos in Toronto

Engagement photographs Toronto

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Bernese mountain dogs, Havanese puppies and Gypsy Vanner horses

A couple of months ago I started playing with the idea of getting a puppy. I did not know much about breeds, so I researched a few, with a preference for small, non shedding dogs.  I stumbled upon the Havanese: a fluffy, extremely cute and friendly breed originating from Havana, Cuba and known to entertain the local aristocracy in the old days. Did they have them in Ontario, I wondered? The Internet search returned a few results and one of them caught my eye: Pieternella Moor’s farm.
Not only she bred the Havanese, but she had stunning Bernese mountain dogs and even three Gypsy Vanner horses on her property!
Needless to say, my trip up and our visit a while back were a true delight! I had the pleasure to hang out with Pieternella’s animals, learn about her amazing work, while getting to know her as a person. It was simply rejuvenating and inspiring to meet a wonderful, passionate, dedicated and humble human being who loves her furry friends from the bottom of her heart.
And their connection made many of the images below.

Pieternella Moore Bernese dogs
Pieternella walking Jacqueena (right) and cuddling with Jacqueena’s puppies (left)

“As a child I had a passion for all animals, I always enjoyed spending time with them. I would often find stray or injured dogs, birds, cats, wild rabbits, etc and  bring them home…these where my best friends. I often begged my mom to allow me to keep them. She would always say no…”

Bernese mountain puppies

Even though little Pieternella was not allowed to keep any of the animals she was bringing in, she did not stop trying… One day, a neighbour suggested to her mom that allowing Pieternella to have a furry friend of her own may put an end to her constant attempts to save them all… As a result, a dog named Happy came into Pieternella’s life when she was 9 yrs old and they have been together for 16 years. They became best buddies and, whenever Pieternella was not assisting with house chores, she and Happy would be off helping the local farmers milk cows, playing with the goats, hiking through the farmers’ fields or catching tadpoles and frogs.

Bernese mountain dog and puppies

After having bred a few golden retrievers, Pieternella’s daughter introduced her to the wonderful Bernese mountain dogs about 15 years ago. Pieternella fell in love with them and decided to focus on this breed. Bernese dogs are prone to many health issues. Passionate and knowledgeable, Pieternella had searched worldwide for lines to help reduce some of the problems and to achieve a look closest to the original: strong, stocky, thick boned. So she went all the way to Europe!

“My R. N. skills help me look after my dogs with the greatest care. I get a lot of joy out of making so many families happy by offering them a loyal, loving, protecting, powerful and of course, absolutely stunning dog. These animals are therapeutic!”

Bernese mountain dogs photography

As a vet technologist, Pieternella’s daughter Sherry (a passionate dog breeder herself) had the chance to learn about the Havanese dogs and suggested this breed to her mother. After researching it for about a year, Pieternella concluded the Havanese had many of the Bernese qualities, just in a smaller body. Excited about this discovery, she decided to try them out. And I have to say, with amazing results. These puppies are nothing short of deliciously sweet! Even with a very busy schedule, I may not be able to stay away from getting one myself!

Moore Havanese puppies

“Havanese dogs have an amazing personality: they are sweet, loveable, and thrive on human interaction. They love to cuddle in people’s laps but also have lots of energy to run in the yard at full speed. They love children, are playful, can do amazing flips. They will also warn their owner whenever a stranger is outside their door… The Havanese can be well placed in families with younger children as well as with retirees ( where the Bernese breed is not suited)”.

Havanese puppy photographer

It is not a big surprise to see Pieternella today surrounded by all her animals. Encouraged by her daughter and following her own inquisitive spirit, Pieternella decided to try breeding Gypsy Vanner horses. After a trip to Europe, where she had attended specialized fairs and learned about the gypsies and their horses, she brought back three beautiful ones who have been with her for the past eight years: Jella, the stunning stallion and two beautiful, kind and gentle mares: Dream and Shireen. Even though they are not bred any longer, these three hang out happily and freely in the pasture, enjoying their lives.

Gypsy Vanner stallion photographyJella, Pieternella’s gorgeous Gypsy Vanner stallion, brought from the Netherlands at 6 months old

Pieternella Moor with Gypsy Vanner horse
Currently retired, the once breeding stallion is now enjoying a peaceful, horsey life in the pasture, with Pieternella’s visits

Gypsy Vanner stallion portraits

Gypsy Vanner horse photosPieternella with her lovely Gypsy Vanner mares: Dream (left, imported from England) and Shireen (right, imported from Germany)

Gypsy Vanner horse photography

If you want to get a lovely, carefully bred, big or smaller dog from a true expert, go see what Pieternella has to offer. Enjoy some wonderful images of the Bernese and Havanese on her dedicated websites:
If you find your beloved puppy as a result of reading this story, please mention it to Pieternella. She will be delighted!



Toronto summer wedding at the Hart House

Back to Toronto’s majestic Hart House, this time for Anita and John’s wedding. What a delight!
They celebrated with a lovely luncheon and, as I expected, they could not stop laughing throughout their day. They even giggled during their ceremony, which was so much fun to see! Their exuberance said it all: deeply in love with each other, they could not wait to share their joy with the people dearest to both of them. At the end, we accompanied them along the Philosopher’s Walk, leading to the Intercontinental Hotel, where the newly weds got to relax, and enjoy the beginning of a new, exciting chapter in their lives.

Anita & John, may your joy remain intact for years to come, have fun together and just keep on loving life! Manuela & Co

Toronto wedding photographer

Bride at the Hart House Toronto

Toronto wedding photographer

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Groom portraits at the Hart House Toronto

Groom portraits Toronto

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Wedding reception at Hart House

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Maternity photos in Toronto with beautiful Sherry

Photographing expecting women is truly very special and humbling. There is a particular energy around a first time mother, a sense of initiation into the realm of a different kind of love. The body is wrapped in so much mystery, anticipation, excitement, emotion.
Even though I did not have the pleasure to meet her until the shoot, Sherry is no stranger. I have photographed her husband’s brother’s wedding and growing family and was very pleased when she contacted me. We connected easily while sharing such an amazing moment in time. Due very soon, she looked gorgeous and glowing.
Sherry and Richard, I look forward to meeting your baby girl, big congratulations and all the very best!

Maternity photographer Toronto

Toronto maternity photos

Maternity photography Toronto

Maternity photos

Toronto maternity photographer

Maternity photos Toronto

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Maternity photographer


Toronto wedding at the Park Hyatt: Annie + Doug

Meeting Annie was truly serendipitous. We had a very good initial connection and later she introduced me to her husband to be, Doug, so we can all have a chat about their day. I simply loved their energy together, I felt as if I was talking to friends I have not seen in a while. Their decision to work with me on their day brought joy to my heart, given their event very much appealed on many levels. The couple had planned for a beautiful, elegant and low key wedding luncheon downtown Toronto, one of my most favorite areas for weddings.
Their choice of the Park Hyatt as a venue was brilliant on all levels, convenience included, as the couple had to only cross the street after their church ceremony.
I really enjoyed being there and recall walking home feeling light, cheerful and energized by a group of people with so much zest for life, good humour and a good party in good company.

Annie + Doug: wishing you all the very best, I hope you will enjoy some fantastic laughs for years to come!
Sincerely, Manuela.

Bridal portraits Toronto

Bride at Park Hyatt Toronto

Park Hyatt Toronto

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Groom at Park Hyatt Toronto

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Park Hyatt wedding photography

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Park Hyatt wedding luncheon

Wedding luncheon at Park Hyatt Toronto

Park Hyatt Toronto wedding

Bride and groom first dance at Park Hyatt

First dance at Park Hyatt Toronto

Park Hyatt Toronto view


Toronto Persian wedding: Mitra + Bilal

Big Congratulations to a lovely couple: Mitra and Bilal, having brought two very rich cultures together during their rich celebrations.
They got married on a cold, rainy Sunday in May but that truly did not matter. Their smiley faces in the photos below stand as proof for the great time these two have shared with everyone around.
Umbrellas out, jackets in between shots, we made it work. Mitra was such a trooper, it surely was not easy to face the weather adversities in that lovely gown, yet one can’t really tell the cold was slowly getting to her. What a day!

M+B: wishing you only joy and many wonderful moments shared from now until the end of time! Hugs, M.

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Bride getting ready

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Elegant groom portrait

Bride and groom in the rain

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Wedding photos in the rain

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Bride and groom at Edwards Gardens

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Edwards Gardens wedding photography

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Toronto engagement photos with Anita & John

Anita and John are to be married this coming July at the picturesque Hart House in Toronto. When I first met them I was really taken with their vibrant, fun, upbeat energy and warmth. We connected extremely well so I can only be very excited to be a part of their celebrations.

John’s father lives close to the Humber Bay bridge, an area very dear to him and Anita, as they love to walk by the water and enjoy the fantastic cityscape  views. We tried to incorporate some of these elements into their engagement photos.
The session was a lot of fun and I truly felt I have spent a great couple of hours with friends.

Look forward to their wedding! M

Engagement photos Toronto

Engagement photography Toronto

Toronto engagement photos

Toronto engagement photographer

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Engagement photo shoot at Humber Bay



Toronto Hart House wedding: Jenia and BJ

April 25th was not just any other day: beautiful Jenia celebrated her union in marriage to her beloved BJ and…her Birthday! How lovely is that?
Surrounded by family members and close friends, they both seemed to enjoy every second of their precious day.
There was music, laughter, fabulous company, fantastic food (provided by the same talented team at the Hart House in Toronto). A spectacular venue, always offering the very best, plus an absolute joy to capture on camera.
Regardless of how many times I go back, I am always in awe when I look around, while new layers of architectural beauty unravel before my eyes. There is so much character to this historical place that it truly is impossible for the artistic imagination to be still…always a great choice!

Jenia + BJ: may this perfect double celebration be the start of a long row of occasions for shared happiness. It was a real pleasure to be there with you on such a memorable day! Wishing you the best in your new life!
Yours, Manuela & Co.

Hart House bridal portraits

Elegant wedding Hart House Toronto

Elegant bride photos

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Groomsmen at Hart House Toronto

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Wedding party at the Hart House

Toronto wedding at the Hart House

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Toronto Hart House wedding ceremony

Wedding ceremony at the Hart House

Bride and groom at the Hart House

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Hart House wedding reception photos

Wedding reception at the Hart House



Destination wedding at the Riu Ocho Rios, Jamaica

I first met Holly almost 5 years ago, while photographing her brother’s gorgeous farm wedding outside of Toronto.
With great joy and enthusiasm, I learned that she was planning a destination wedding in Jamaica and she chose to have me capture her preparations, culminating with the big day.
As far as I am concerned, this was a double bill: I was going to see some of my most favorite clients and their families again and, I was going to revisit an island so very dear to me. One combination that filled my heart with joy.

The week we have spent at the Riu Ocho Rios, Jamaica was filled with capricious weather: we had seen a lot of rain during the first few days to the point where the wedding planning team came up with a ‘Plan B’ for a ceremony in a covered area. Quite different from the original beach arrangements.
Of course one needs to adjust and accept what is in the moment…but I have to say, I would have been disappointed, and I am sure I would have not been alone.
But…there was no need for such feelings to be experienced, as the skies magically opened on the 4th day and the sun shone beautifully. My heart skipped a few beats that morning and I am certain, everybody else in the party must have been thrilled!
Holly and Robby received the most magical gift: the opportunity to live their dream of a wedding day spent entirely on the beach. They danced the night away on the sand and their joy was truly contagious!

I hope the images below were able to capture some of the fantastic energy surrounding an amazing group of people.

H+R: may your new life together be all about sunshine, joy and much love! Yours, Manuela

Riu Palace Jamaica

Destination wedding details

Bridal party at Riu Palaca Jamaica Bridesmaids at Riu Palace Jamaica

Riu Palace Jamaica destination wedding

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Groomsmen at Riu Palace Jamaica

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Wedding ceremony at Riu Palace Jamaica

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Destination wedding photos

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Destination wedding Jamaica Riu Palace

Riu Palace Jamaica wedding

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Destination wedding reception on the beach

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