Latin Dancers in the Grand Banking Hall
Photography by Calin
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One King West Wedding


As a Toronto wedding photographer, I know that a posh wedding at One King West wouldn't be complete without a big surprise. Often, on the wedding day, the bride and groom surprise your guests and often the professional photographer. In my long wedding photography career, I have seen it all.  Choreographed first dances, mariachi, super heroes, bridal party acrobatics, the groom singing the love song dedicated to the bride and many more. At this wedding reception, the couple hired exotic dancers to entertain the guests and family.

Immediately after the wedding ceremony, I started taking photographs of the venue from the second story of One King West. It was then when I noticed several gorgeous dancers getting dressed for the performance. My wedding photography instincts were sharp that the so I asked them if they were performing that night. "Yes they said! The bride and groom hired us to open the dance floor right after the first dance."

I immediately called my second shooter and informed him of that. No matter that we didn't know about this huge surprise prepared by the couple on their big day. We were able to capture beautiful moments and here are three pictures the couple included in the wedding album.

The newlyweds Sanaz and Payam, hired the Afro Latin Dance Company to entertain the guests. After the bride and groom had the first dance in the Grand Banking Hall, the Latin dancers showed up out of nowhere and started inviting people on the dance floor. 

Let's review the photographs in a chronological order. The first photo captures an environmental portraits of the bride and groom right after their first dance. The next images show a couple of dancers performing a phenomenal Latin dance. 

The second photograph is capturing the moment when the female lead dancer raised her hands during her performance. As a professional photographer, I learned how to capture moments. Despite this venues challenges related to relighting, I was able to immortalize this moment when the dancer raised her hands triumphantly.

The last image of this wedding album spread is featuring a couple of dancers in their final pose. Behind them we can see the guests applauding the performance. Some of them, transformed into professional photographers and were taking pictures. That is the reason gives you time cell phone flash in the background.

As a side note, the bride and groom sent me a letter after their special day in which they thanked me for contributing to their perfect wedding.

Honesty, it was the dancers that help me create such beautiful images. After this wedding, I always refer the dance company to any couple getting married in the GTA.

To capture these beautiful images I used my favourite wedding photography combo of lenses. On my right camera I had a 35mm F 1.4 lens. It is my favourite medium wide lens in the is and most of the time on the dance floor. The second lass is the beloved Canon 85 mm f1.2. I absolutely love this lens when it focuses. Truth be told, our focus is kind of sluggish and I lost a few moments on the big day. However, it is sharp and perfect for portraiture.

Both lenses were mounted on a Canon 5D Mark three, my wedding workhorse for the last four years. I know many wedding photographers in Toronto dream about this lens. However it is so expensive and heavy that it makes it unpractical on the wedding day. Especially for professional photographers who can shoot back to back weddings, this lens can be challenging. As a side note, many photographers switched to mirror less cameras because of the weight of photographic equipment.

From a composition standpoint, these images are symmetrical. The subject is deliberately placed in the centre of the photographs. However, in the album design, I mean sure I respected the rules of compositions to create several triangles, which are very appealing to the human eye.

Post processing was easy in these photographs. Because One King West Hotel offers such gorgeous backdrops, I was able to create stunning images.

As a wedding photographer, I always advise my clients to invest in up lighting so I can create the perfect wedding photographs. Light, is the main ingredient in creating beautiful photos regardless of one's photography style. If you can marry beautiful lighting, motion and emotion on a consistent basis you are successful photographer.

Location: 1 King St W, Toronto, ON M5H 1A1.

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