Amanda and Eric are good sports.

A couple of months ago when they hired me to shoot their wedding next year, they told me they also hoped to have some photos this June for a “save the date” card. So we arranged to get together at their home in May for an engagement shoot.


They live in Saint Albert, Ontario, which is a small town famous for Saint Albert cheese. (If you live in Ontario or Quebec, you have probably had it at some point. And no, this isn’t an ad). Saint Albert is a nice place with a small bridge crossing the Nation River into town.

And that’s all very nice, you are saying, but why are Amanda and Eric good sports?

Well, when we arranged to do their engagement shoot, I looked at where and when the sunrise would be on that day using the Photographer’s Ephemeris (about which I may write a blog post later). This is an excellent tool for photographers wishing to do work outside, and I discovered by using it that the sun would rise at 5:32 AM over St. Albert, giving nice warm light to that bridge for an hour or so.

“How about I arrive at your place at 5 AM?” I said, wincing a little at my chutzpah.

“Sure!” they said, “We’re up then, anyway!”

AmandaEric4.jpgI was kind of amazed that they were up then, anyway. My fiancée, Nat, usually is, though. She sees 5 AM way more than I do, and I see midnight way more than she does. I’m tempted to say that sunrise is overrated, but it isn’t true. I love the sunrise. I just lack the commitment to see it all that much.

Anyway, at about 3:30 on Saturday morning, Nat and I clambered out of bed, climbed into the car, and drove to St. Albert, which is about an hour and a half from Montréal. We arrived at their nice little country house on the river at just before 5, fully caffeinated and ready to go. The bridge was only a few minutes away.

it was cloudy that morning, but the sun burst through for a little while, the rain held off, and we all had fun.

Afterwards, Amanda contacted me to let me know that she had picked the photo they most wanted printed (all my packages include prints), and the one she picked was also my favourite: it’s the two of them together, backs to the camera, looking upriver into the future. AmandaEric (1 of 49) (1)