Hello! My name is Dallas and I'm a photographer and makeup artist based in Toronto, Ontario. This blog features a collection of my latest photo work, along with lots of makeup tutorials and stories of my everyday life. Thanks for stopping by, and don't be shy to visit my website or say hello.

9.12.14

the feeling of fragrance | fresh linen

It's time for the next edition of my The Feeling of Fragrance series, where I show you the final image that was included in my collection, then share some of the other options and talk about the stories behind the images. Today I'd like to talk about the "Fresh Linen" portrait. Here is the image from the show:

This portrait was inspired by the heavenly sensation of clean sheets, and the clean scent you inhale when fresh laundry comes out of the dryer all fluffy and warm. To me, the fragrance of fresh linen is one of comfort, safety, and childhood. For this reason, it was important to me to have a mother and daughter as the subject of the portrait. I asked one of my longtime friends, Lindsay, if she and her daughter, G, would be interested in posing for the project. At the time of the shoot, Linds was just a few weeks shy of the birth of her second daughter as well, so she was radiantly pregnant. 

These portraits were created in June, 2014, and was shot at the home of Lindsay and her family. We were assisted by my friend and 2013 bride, Karly Boileau, whose help was instrumental to the success of the shoot. It was a very dark, rainy day in the spring, so it was really important to use reflectors and sheets to bounce the sparse natural light wherever possible. Karly, thank you for all your help!


The essence of this shoot is natural beauty and being at ease in the comfort of one's own home. I kept the makeup very natural, really just applying blush and highlighter to Lindsay's perennially awesome complexion. L & G wore their own clothes in the pastel shades I'd suggested, and Linds did her own hair as well. G's favourite stuffed animal made a cameo throughout the photos.  Lindsay and G, thank you so much for letting me come into your home and photograph you together. Your whole family is beautiful inside and out, and it was a wonderful thing to photograph you together.

4.12.14

lovely moments video

Good morning! I'm taking the day off today to take some much-needed time away from my computer. But before I go, I just wanted to share a little video I've been working on. I realized at some point this month that I had a year and half's worth of video clips that were just sitting around. so I wanted to give them a home. These are some great memories from July, 2013 up until last month. The footage was shot in Madison, New Glarus and Spring Green (WI), Chicago, Toronto, New York, Vancouver and Owen Sound.



Thank you to all my family and friends who are featured in the clips. I'm looking forward to working a lot more with video in 2015.

3.12.14

the feeling of fragrance | mint

It's time for the next edition of my The Feeling of Fragrance series, where I show you the final image that was included in my collection, then share some of the other options and talk about the stories behind the images. Today I'd like to talk about the "Mint" portrait. Here is the image that is featured in the show:

Of all the scents featured in the collection, "Mint" is one of my favourites, as it has perhaps the greatest number of memories associated with it. Up around my cottage, wild mint grows alongside creeks and rivers and natural springs like this:

Throughout my life, I've had so much fun going on hikes and adventures with my family and friends in the area surrounding my cottage. One of our favourite things to do, especially as kids, was to pull on our rubber boots and walk through the creeks. In remembering these moments, I always think of the heady scent of mint. When it came time to choose a location for this portrait, I knew from the outset that I wanted to shoot in the back creek of my relatives' property, which is just down the road from my family's cottage. Working through my initial sketches last fall, I knew I wanted to have the models in the creek itself. I know my drawings are creepy—they make sense in my head and then look super weird on paper!

In terms of models, I also always knew I wanted to ask my cousins Elise and Deanna. They've kindly modelled for me countless times throughout their entire lives, and are both incredibly photogenic. Fun fact: they were also the flower girl (Deanna) and ring bearer (Elise) at my wedding. I kept their outfits as simple as possible. Elise borrowed a dress of mine while Deanna wore her own. They both grabbed their own boots from the mudroom of their cottage. I went with their existing hair and makeup to keep things as natural as possible, but added a generous amount of a coral cream blush (Le Blush Crème de Chanel in "Intonation") to their cheeks for extra brightness.


The weather forecast had been calling for rain, which I was actually happy about, as a rainy or even just overcast day would have been perfect for the lighting and colour tones I had in mind. I wanted soft pastel tones and a cloudy afternoon would have been so  ideal. It actually ended up being an incredibly bright and hot day, so I had to alter my vision quite a bit!

Instead of soft and pretty and serene, I went with bright and fun and adventurous, which was so much more appropriate than what I'd had in mind. After all, that was the original spirit of the memory of mint: youthful adventure in the fresh air. To be honest with you, I feel that this shoot in its entirety does more justice to the memory than one photo, even the one I chose in the end. I love all the images here, because they are taken precisely where some of my favourite memories were born, and they feature the people with whom the memories were made.


Elise and Deanna, thank you so much for always supporting me and for lending me your time for my crazy pursuits. Love you both so much!



After we wrapped our shoot, we headed to the shade to cool off and take a few simple portraits. I guess I got my pastel tones after all!


2.12.14

eglinton grand wedding | jackie & geoff

For their wedding day, Jackie and Geoff envisioned an Old Hollywood theme and, oh, did it come together beautifully. They chose a former movie theatre for their venue, then cleverly incorporated elements like movie ticket invitations, a custom poster, golden chandeliers and a twinkling marquee. There was a beautifully cut tuxedo for the groom and ruby slippers for the bride, and the entire day was painted with touches of black, white and red. Guests were encouraged to dress in the spirit of the theme, so family and friends arrived sporting feathers and sequins, white dinner jackets and bowties.

In addition to the aesthetic details, their theme definitely extended into the atmosphere of the festivities. It could have been the thoughtfully crafted timeline that left lots of space for relaxation, or it might be attributed to the softly candlelit dinner, but time seemed to move slowly on their wedding day. The classic theme created a sensation of timeless fun, like a favourite film that fills you with joy every time you watch it.

I couldn't have dreamed up a more perfect wedding to conclude my 2014 season. I've known Jackie her entire life, as our families are tightly interconnected. I'm so thrilled that she found a person as sweet and funny as Geoff. I'm looking forward to watching their love grow as we all create more memories together throughout the years. Jackie and Geoff, congratulations! Thank you so much for inviting us to document and share in your day. It was beautiful in every way. I'm so happy for you guys! Enjoy the holiday season and get ready for your amazing honeymoon. So much love to you both.







Ellie, Jackie's niece, was an adorable presence and a beam of sunshine throughout the entire day.

Meanwhile. Geoff and his guys got ready at a nearby hotel.



We headed to Graydon Hall Manor, which Jackie had reserved for a few hours for portraits. It was a dream location with so many different spaces within one estate. She was so smart to reserve a set portrait location for their November wedding. Winter brides, take note! The weather could have been really intensely wintery, and we still would have been warm and cozy and worry-free for photos. As luck would have it, however, it was clear and mild on their wedding day, so we were able to use both the indoors and grounds of the manor.

J & G had their first look in the cloud room, with their close family watching from the balcony above, which was so sweet.






The main event began in the evening at The Eglinton Grand.


Jackie printed a mock movie poster for outside the venue using one of the images from their engagement session. So awesome!

Credits:

Ceremony and Reception venue: The Eglinton Grand  //  Portrait location: Graydon Hall Manor  //  Officiant: Enduring Promises — Jim Emerson  //  Photography: Dallas Curow Photography, with Brian Fauteux  //  Ceremony musician: Don Niblett (father of the groom)  //  Catering: Dynamic Hospitality  //  Florist: Eunice Denby  // Décor: the Bride and her family  //  Baker: Nicole Niblett  //  Favours: Bridlewood Soaps  //  Invitations: Paper Cake Designs  //  Bride's dress: Da Vinci //  Bride's shoes: Princess Pumps  //  Fascinator: Brenda's Bridal Veils  //  Bride's coat: Christian Dior, purchased at Holt Renfrew (Groom's family heirloom)  //  Bridesmaids' necklaces: Pearls by Linda  //  Earrings for Bride and Bridesmaids: Bitter Sweet  //  Bride's bracelet: family heirloom  //  Bridesmaids' dresses: David's Bridal  //  Groom and Groomsmens' attire: Moores  //  DJ: Legends Entertainment  // Hair: Salon Elle  //  Makeup: Mary Kleinpaste  //