Straight Thru: Iceland (Jökulsarlon)

If you’ve been following along on our journey through Iceland, you are probably wondering why it’s taken so long to get part two out… the reality is that we took over 700 photos at Jökulsarlon, and narrowing them down to a reasonable amount for a blog post seemed like an impossible feat.  As planned, we will be breaking our photographic journey down into 6 posts:

  1. Driving the coast to Hali
  2. Jokulsarlon glacier lagoon boat tour and sunset
  3. Hiking Vatnajokull: Europe’s largest glacier
  4. Ice cubes on a black sand beach (& Random waterfalls)
  5. The Golden Circle Tour & Pingvellir National Park
  6. The Blue Lagoon

Jökulsarlon is a lagoon, located on the edge of Vatnajökull, Europe’s largest glacier, where pieces of the glacier break off and float down a river and out into the atlantic ocean, to be overtaken by waves and broken down.  Our first look at the lagoon:

jokulsarlon0001There are no words that can possibly describe how utterly beautiful this lagoon is.  A quick google search says that the lagoon is now 18 square kilometres- filled with floating pieces of the glacier in all shapes and sizes.  As the glacier recedes from the atlantic ocean, these pieces break off (at an alarming rate) and the sound echoing around the area is chilling. As a result of the receding glacier, the lagoon is constantly growing and changing.  We had pre-scheduled a zodiac boat tour of the lagoon with Glacier Lagoon tours, but due to the warmer weather, the entrance to the lagoon was blocked for the zodiac boats, making it unsafe for entry.  We were offered boarding onto an amphibian boat tour as an alternative, which we took.

On the amphibian, we were taken up close to the tongue of Vatnajajökull, past massive icebergs and glaciers.  Iceland is the only place in the world (so we were told) where you are able to see layers of ash layered into the ice- caused by the various volcanic eruptions throughout Iceland over thousands of years.

A large piece of glacier was lifted from the water, and we were all given an opportunity to hold it, take a photo or feel it up close.  It was explained to us that this ice is created by pressure, as opposed to by temperature, therefore making it incredibly strong and clear. It was broken into pieces and we got our first taste of pure glacier water… YUM!

We spent some time after the tour just walking around the area, taking in all the angles and sides of the lagoon that we could get to while trying desperately to capture images that could even begin to show the sheer size and beauty of the area, which seemed unlikely. We had to concede that there are simply some things a camera cannot capture.

After our boat tour, we went back to the hotel for a bite to eat, and returned for the sunset at the lagoon.  The hours we spent walking around the lagoon at sunset are forever ingrained in my memory.

The sounds of the ice cracking, the playful seals swimming among the ice with the vibrant colours of the sunset reflecting off the water, together painted a picture that will never leave our memory.

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Our first Icelandic glacier sunset… nature’s beauty at it’s finest!

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Christine xoxox

 

Acadia | Waterloo Region Newborn Photographer

When I arrived at their home, Miss Acadia was sound asleep in her Mommy’s arms.  She was calm, quiet and everything about her felt so peaceful.  As I prepped for the session, she enjoyed her snuggles.  I was secretly thinking that at any moment she would wake and cry, just as I was ready to begin the session… but she didn’t.  A peaceful transfer onto the newborn set and we were able to breeze through many of the photos.

It may have been one of the most calm newborn sessions I have captured.  She woke for a feeding, then settled back to sleep for her family photos (even when her four-legged best friend came in for a sniff)

Presenting, Acadia Rae

 

Thank you so much for having me in your home to capture these photos for you!

 

*** Note: Are you pregnant, expecting a child between December 2016 and March 2017?  We are now offering a free maternity mini session with the booking of a newborn session.  Contact us to reserve your due date now! **

Lyric | Waterloo Region Family Photographer

Working with families is so much fun, watching them grow, develop, expand… it’s a wonderful blessing to us!  Katie and Tom are one of those families that we have had the wonderful joy of watching and capturing over the years.

For over 4 years we have captured their most precious moments… from that first session in our unfinished basement studio, where Katie came in timid and shy, speaking about their struggles to become a family… through 3 newborn sessions, 3 cake smashes, a couple extended family sessions, a fashion blogging session and more, it has been a beautiful journey to capture. Katie is the beautiful Mama (inside and out) behind www.KatieSpinks.com a wonderful place to check out for parenting, style, fashion and more!

Here we are 4 years later, capturing the first birthday of their youngest daughter Lyric… this family never ceases to amaze me, with the perfectly and beautifully styled wardrobe, to their three gorgeous children, it’s always wonderful to capture them.

Happy Birthday Lyric… you are a a perfect little addition to your family (and I promise that someday my camera won’t seem so scary!)

xoxo Christine

Dominic is ONE! | Waterloo Region Family Photographer

It’s hard to believe it has been one year since we first met this precious family!  Time flies so quickly sometimes, it’s hard to believe.

Dominic was feeling a little out of sorts for his session, but still managed to rock his session (as usual).  Do you remember this face?  This has remained one of my favourite photos EVER.. he just looks so calm and peaceful in his little bow tie.

Straight Thru Films and Photography
Straight Thru Films and Photography http://www.StraightThru.ca 519-213-0717 Info@StraightThru.ca

I am often asked if I think a baby looks the same or has changed a lot since their last sessions… in the case of Dominic, I feel that he looks EXACTLY the same.. the shape of his features, his amazing hair and cool boy personality.

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Thank you for continuing to trust us to capture these moments in Dominic’s life.  If has been a pleasure watching him grow the past year!

xoxox Christine

Stefanie & Buddy | Waterloo Region Wedding Videographer

This summer we were honoured to capture some STUNNING weddings!  When Stefanie approached us about capturing her wedding, we were really excited.  Not only have I (Christine) known Stefanie for a very long time, way back to our softball days (her dad was my coach!) but also throughout high school as well. It was great catching up with her.

Knowing how important this video was for Buddy, and for his family overseas that were not able to attend the wedding, James worked hard to capture all the details, all the love and all the beauty.  Congratulations Stef & Buffy, and thank you for having us capture these moments for you❤  We can’t wait for you to see your full length video!

In the meantime, check out the preview…

 

xoxox James & Christine

 

 

Straight Thru: Iceland (driving the coast)

As we have mentioned many times in social media, one of our favourite things to do as a couple, as a family and as photographers is to travel.  Over the years we have been to many places, taken thousands of beautiful photos, only to return home to be sucked back into the working life, diving into editing your beautiful memories, never to display or share the photos of our adventures.

In August, James and I took a trip of a lifetime to Iceland- why Iceland you ask?  Just look at the photos and I’m sure you will begin to understand, it was a photographer’s dream.  Everywhere we looked were stunning vistas, otherwordly views and experiences, it was honestly like nothing we had ever experienced in our lives.  This was also to be our first trip without Olivia, so we knew it needed to be something adventurous, and Iceland fit the bill perfectly.

Over the next few weeks I have 6 blog posts planned, going over the thousands of photos that we took on this 5 day adventure.  I will try not to “talk” too much because as they say, a picture speaks a thousand words… I will try to place where we are, what we were seeing and some of the information we learned, but more than anything, we want to show the sheer beauty of Iceland through the lens here at Straight Thru! I’m going to break this down into the following blog posts:

  1. Driving the coast to Hali
  2. Jokulsarlon glacier lagoon boat tour and sunset
  3. Hiking Vatnajokull: Europe’s largest glacier
  4. Ice cubes on a black sand beach (& Random waterfalls)
  5. The Golden Circle Tour & Pingvellir National Park
  6. The Blue Lagoon

As I complete these blog posts, I will link back to them, so eventually you can start at this post and read through them all!

Let’s get started… welcome to Iceland!

Day 1: Driving the coast to Hali…

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James and I arrived into Iceland late on Sunday night, to a surprisingly dark airport (we were not expecting the dark, as they only have a small window of darkness in the evening in the summer, however there was significant cloud cover, so we didn’t see much)  We picked up our fancy little Volkswagon Golf at the airport and went on our way!

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We stayed the night at The Icelandic Health hotel, really just because it was close to the airport and not as astronomically expensive as many of the others.  It included a cute room, free breakfast and was a comfortable place to sleep for the all of 5 hours we had to sleep before we needed to hit the road!  When we woke up, I was feeling REALLY sick, so we had to stay at the hotel longer than anticipated, but eventually hit the road.  We had rented a personal wifi device from a company called Trawire and I cannot possibly recommend this enough!!  It was heavenly to use our own phones on wifi for maps, google, researching places and listening to our apple music!

On the road we went… throughout the day, driving along the coast, stopping when we wanted to, taking photos as we went was the perfect start to the day.  We did have one timeline restriction, as we had scheduled a tour at Jokulsarlon that evening, however otherwise we had the day to ourselves to adventure along the way.

Our first stop on the road was at Suderland- a lookout point over southern Iceland, where without the obstruction of trees (there were VERY minimal trees in Iceland) you could see all the way to the Atlantic Ocean!

The day started out pretty grey and gloomy (and the area around the airport really does look like you have survived an apocalypse) but as we went on, the sky got blue, the clouds got fluffy and the scenery grew more and more beautiful.  Many people only stay near Reykjavik when visiting Iceland, and do the “golden circle tour” of tourist sites, but I am so glad we drove the coast!  Maybe next time we will drive the whole country!

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Next stop was viewing Eyjafjallajokull, the site of the 2010 Volcanic eruption that had a HUGE impact on air travel over a 5 day period that include ash plumes over 9km high!  There was a tiny little red roofed farm that had been wiped out in the volcano, and was a great marker for many of the photos we were seeing at the eruption site.

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Then onward we drove, finally catching our first glimpse of Europe’s largest glacier Vatnajokull (that we would be hiking the next morning)

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We stopped for our boat ride through Jokulsarlon glacier lagoon (which will get an entire post on it’s own since we took over 300 photos there!) and then ended the journey of the day at the Hali Country Hotel which was ADORABLE!!! When we got our instructions on finding the farm, we were told to look for the “bookshelf” at the side of the road, which sounded funny (and stressed out my A-type planning brain) but then we saw this…

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We checked into Hali, where honestly the meat soup was the most AMAZING smelling food on the planet, it smelled so good!! We were staying in a room in the guest house, with a beautiful view of the glacier as well as a full view of the Atlantic Ocean only steps away (which we forgot to take photos of!)

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our views of the glacier from Hali:

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After checking into the guest house, we returned to the glacier lagoon for the 11pm sunset, then into bed for a good night’s rest before our big glacier hike!  Hope you enjoyed the starting teaser.. these photos are only a TINY glimpse into the beauty of Iceland, with the most incredible views to come.

 

xoxox Christine

Maybel’s Outdoor Newborn Session | Waterloo Region Newborn Photographer

 

We absolutely adore doing different things, capturing photos in a fun way, enticing children to give us real smiles by being goofy… whatever it takes!  When we received the phone call from Maybel’s mom, saying that they were looking for someone who was willing to do a newborn session outdoors, we jumped at the idea.  We knew it would take some planning to be sure that baby was protected from the hot sun, but were really excited to get into the sun and capture things a little differently!

It was no surprise, given her mom and dad’s love of the outdoors, that Maybel was so calm and peaceful when we brought her outside, as though she knows this is where she will spend much of her life (if her Dad has anything to say about it)

Meet Maybel…

 

enjoy the outdoors!!

xoxo Christine