Introducing Your Cambridge Children’s Photographer…

“ME”

I am a Mother of three.

I love my children, my husband, my wiener dogs and my Canon.

I find the smell of wet sand nostalgic, I don’t drink enough water and I occasionally enjoy a good big mac.

I love life – and I love seeing life through my lens.

 

Nicola Toon is an award winning photographer based in Cambridge Ontario.  Nicola services the Kitchener / Waterloo area and beyond with her lifestyle photography, family photography and newborn portraiture.  

Nicola has gained international attention for her lifestyle and family imagery.  Her work has been featured in Professional Photographer magazine, The Fort Magazine and Chic Magazine

For as long as I can remember I have felt more complete with a camera in my hand.  Even at a young age I remember always trying to get “the shot”.  The one that would be worthy of my little desktop frame.  Today my little desktop frame has been replaced with a more grandeur version of it’s former self.  My home is adorned with art.  My art.  Our art.  The art that my family has created in our memories.  My little frame has graduated to wall displays, canvases and photo books.  Each the perfect package for the moments in time that they preserve.

As your photographer it is my job to capture YOUR new moments that you are creating with your family.  To take those moments and turn them into art.  Your art.  To get all of those incredible memories off of your computer and into their rightful spot – into your grown up version of your own little desktop frame – to be presented to the world and loved and enjoyed as they should be.

Contact me at info@hulahoopphotography.com to book your own photo session and create your own family heirlooms.

I look forward to hearing from you.

Cheers,

Nicola


Love it? Pin it!!

Laurie - My cell is 2892597309 and I am interested in getting pictures takes of my materiny I am currently 26 weeks pregnant. Please contact me. Thanks!!

ella - HI I WOULD LIKE TO COLLABORATE ON A MATERNITY SHOOT WITH YOU. PLEASE EMAIL ME IF INTERESTED SO I CAN GIVE YOU MORE DETAILS. THANKS

Jen - Hello,
The email above wouldn’t work so I’m post if here! Sorry!

I am searching for a photographer who travels to Sauble Beach that would be able to take some family photographers as a present to my mother in law for her 60th birthday.

It would be 7 adults (3 couples and my mother in law) and 3 children (ages 1, 1.5 and 4 years old – all walking)

Just wondering if I could get an idea of pricing and if you’re available any time between the 20th and the 24th

Thank you so much for your time! Your images are breathtaking :)

Jen

Sent from my iPhone

Let’s get Real – Lifestyle Photography in Ontario

I am looking for a family to help me fulfill a need, to provide me with a personal challenge and commit to taking a year long photographic journey with me.

In my house I have an album.  It is full to the brim with the stuff of our lives.  The tantrums, the fevers, the mess, the chaos, groceries, laundry, pillow forts, movie nights, arcade games, sickness and health, laughter and tears.

This album is cherished.  My children PORE over every detail.  They love to see the documentation of their little lives.  Their REAL lives.  The unedited, unabridged version of what a typical day in our household looks like.

I now want to take this to the next level.  I want to provide one family with a similar experience.  I want to challenge myself to see another family in the same bare bones way that I see my own.  I want to be a fly on the wall for a year of your lives.  To give your children the gift that my children love so very much.  To have a piece of their childhood immortalized.

I ask that you give me the gift of your family and your home in it’s purest form and in return I will gift you a year.

This is a very personal project for me.  It’s something I have thought about doing for quite some time.  For that reason I need to find the perfect family to take this on with me so here goes.

You are:  Eclectic.  Easy going.  An artist.  You prefer to go barefoot.  Your bed is unmade.  You are at home during the day. You have a child.  You have two children, or three, or four.  You are a single mom.  You are married.  You have tattoos.  You have a dog named “Steven”, or “Linda”, or “Mark”.  You listen to folk music.  Your house isn’t perfect.  You have a GREAT sense of humour.  You knit.  You sew.  You sing out loud.  You have a garden.  You love to dance.  You aren’t afraid to cry.  You don’t take life to seriously.  You love deeply.  You don’t care what others think.   You are unconventional.  You can open yourself up to me.   You love yourself.  Your children dress themselves.  You live on a farm, in a church, in a century home.  This board speaks to you – could be you.  You love nature.  Your husband is kind.  You have a partner and she is kind.

If this sounds like you I want to hear from you.  I want you to take a year long photographic journey with me.  I will photograph your family in your home once a month for a year.  It could be for five minutes, it could be for an hour.  If your child is home sick I want you to call me.  Let me capture you nursing him back to health.  I want to photograph the raw and real moments of your life.

If you’re interested in taking this journey with me please email me at info@hulahoopphotography.com and tell me a bit about yourself.  Include photos of yourself, your family, your home.  I want to know the story of you.   I can’t wait to take this on with someone.

Could it be you?

Below are some of the images that I have captured for my own family.  Most taken in the span of a few minutes.  It doesn’t have to take long.  It just has be to real.

Love it? Pin it!!

Cake Smash sessions (why I don’t do them) – Baby Photographer in Cambridge

I decided some time ago the type of photographer that I would like to be.

Over the past 6 year of my photography career I have dabbled as most of us do.  Trying to find my groove and what makes me tick.  Through it all there were three main types of sessions that I decided I did not want to add to my  portfolio offering.

Weddings

Posed newborn Photography

and

Cake Smash sessions

Don’t get me wrong.  I love weddings, I love some of those curly newborn images and I most certainly LOVE cake, but I just found that none of those types of sessions really felt right to me and they certainly didn’t reflect my style.

I get many, many enquiries about weddings, posed newborns and cake smash and while I *could* do those things I really try to stick to my guns and stay true to what I love and feel good about photographing.

So the answer is  - No.  I don’t do cake smash and here’s why.   Personally I find the whole concept of cake smash a little too trendy for my liking.  I’m not in love with the idea of dressing up a baby in a tutu and putting her in front of a brightly coloured cake and letting her become covered in it.  I’d much rather provide you with soft and natural images of your beautiful baby as they are.

Their adorable baby rolls, the soft fluff of their fine hair, the first poke of their new teeth.  I might use a knitted or a paper hat, maybe a single balloon.  But ultimately I want to provide you with something neutral, classic and timeless.  Something that will have a place on your wall for years to come.  Something that you will look at in ten years and feel like if you had the chance you would do it all over again.

So while I don’t do cake smash sessions.  I’d love to celebrate your baby with you and do their first year photographs In the best way I know how.  Simply.

 

Love it? Pin it!!

Joy - We do both in our 1 year session. We always do the pre-pictures and then the cake smash. I love the cake smash part just as much as the pre-cake smash photos.

hulahoop - That’s certainly a great way to do it :) Like I said. They are cute – just not for me :)

Sarah - Love this blog post. I agree with you 100%. I feel when people/parents, add so much extra stuff, you lose focus on the natural beauty of the child. Your simply and pure style is, in my opinion, the best way to hold on to the moment of your children being little.

Jane - Well fun with cake doesn’t equal bright colours an tutus. Just a a nice, earthy coloured cake and you get something in your style. Would you refuse to someone who had few sessions with you?

27 months later – Newborn photographer in Ancaster

My all time favourite is when I get to photograph clients again for their second (or third!) newborn babies.

First and foremost it’s an incredible feeling to know that they trusted you so much and were so happy with their first in home newborn session that they call you back to do it all again.

Secondly it’s so wonderful to see how these young families grow as parents.  Raising the most incredible little people.

Another reason I love this so much is that I get to visit the first born again and see how they have grown and changed and really just become the centre of everything for these parents.

The OTHER reason this is so much fun for me is because it’s pretty kewl to be able to see how my own photography style changes over the years.  Same clients, same house and totally different results.

I was going to wait until Monday to post this in home newborn session, but Mama is feeling a bit under the weather today and I thought this might pick her up a bit.

For fun I’m going to include some images from my first session with this family 27 months ago.  Interesting to see how my style changes and evolves over the years:)

27 months ago:

 

Today:

 

Love it? Pin it!!

Ophelia – Newborn Photographer in Cambridge

With a name so beautiful you can’t title your blog post anything else.

Sweet 5 day old Ophelia.  Such a beautiful baby and it was nice to do an in home newborn photography session in Cambridge since my work often has me travelling further from home.

The whole time I was doing this newborn session I had the song Ophelia by the Lumineers in my head:) I super love that song, and I loved this session equally as much.

Introducing – Ophelia:)

Love it? Pin it!!

My Disney Photo Flop – Photography at Disney

Baking cookies together, decorating the Christmas tree, family road trips and attempting to take photographs of your children at Disney world.

All of these things have something in common for me.  In my head I envision that they will be the most idealistic and lovely experiences.   We will each have a role in the kitchen and taste batter from each other’s fingers, we will decorate the tree as a family by a roaring fire with carols playing in the background, we will sing songs and enjoy the scenery from a car full of happiness and we will visit the most magical place on earth and have the most magical photographs to show for it.

In reality we fight over who will get to stir and complain about the fact that we only have white icing, the children will be interested in decorating the tree for exactly two and a half minutes and then they will start playing with the family’s heirloom ornaments as if they are going into battle, they will complain about the sun in their eyes in the car and that they have been sitting for too long or that the music is too loud or too quiet or that they never want to sit in the car again.

I’m sure you can see where this is going.  After much debate I decided to lug my professional camera to Disney.  I worried that if I went equipped with only my iPhone that I would be sad about so many missed photo opportunities and a whole heap of regret.  I thought I would be able to get the most amazing images of my children at the happiest place on earth.  ’I'll have so many fantastic images’ I thought.

WRONG.

We started our trip at Epcot.  It was FREEZING by Florida standards.    Of course I really wanted my kids to be in some super cute outfits for all of the photographs I was going to take, but they insisted on crocs with socks and athletic pants and mismatched gloves.  At least Ivy’s boots were cute…….  ;)

Our first ride of the trip was “Living with the Land”.  After both Eli and Ivy had to be dragged onto it screaming because they were worried it was going to be scary (It’s a giant green house) we were off to the races.  I was ready to start taking some amazing pictures.   Hmmmm – this is going to be harder than I thought.

“Oliver – you had your arm in your brother’s face.  Can you guys just look at me again.”

Awesome.

When all else fails.  Just take a photograph from behind.  That’s cool, right?

After many more attempts like the ones above during our morning at Epcot we were ready to hit the world showcase!  This part we were (at least my husband and I) really looking forward to!  I was so frustrated with my photography experience so far that I started to fall apart a bit.  Harsh light?  Midday sun?  Whatever.  They are all in the frame right?…..

Morocco was my favourite pavilion.  The colours were so rich and warm.  I could have had a field day in here with my camera – if it weren’t for the models.  hee hee.

In this particular shot, Eli was reflected in the mirror, which was super cool – but then he moved and I got…..that lady.

Super cute bench.  Sure they sat on some fabrics that were for sale, but I was going to seize  my opportunity.  If they could just sit for a moment I could get a nice photo of them all together.  Wrong again.  (notice the crocs and socks)

Germany was next.  Again so much lovely detail, but I always do prefer to have people in my photographs.  Even if they do look like this….

Groan.  After this point I think I put my camera away.  My hands were freezing and I give up.  Magic Kingdom tomorrow!  So many fabulous photo ops there!

Here we go!!!  Looking cold.  Notice even the little one in the stroller is questioning the crocs and socks.

We were let into the park an hour before everyone else for an early breakfast reservation.  An empty park!  Perfect for photos!  Unfortunately three of my crew took off running to the restaurant.  Only Eli and I were left behind.  I did manage to snag this one.  Not bad.

Carousel photographs would be super cute!!!!  Ivy and I went on Prince Charming’s carousel.  But of course she looked anywhere but at me.  And FYI looking through a lens on a moving carousel.  Not good.

Okay.  This is not going at all how I planned.   Feeling queasy we head to the parade, which is incredible and has some great colour – and random elbows.

Finally something decent.

The Story book circus area of the park is SOOOOO amazing.  I was so excited by it.  But nobody wants to stop for photographs while they’re at Disney world.  So you get this….LOL

Over at Winnie the Pooh I had this great opportunity, but unfortunately Simon’s butt decided to make an appearance.

Damn!  It would have been super cute too.  ”Simon – you got your butt in the shot.  Move it quick so I can try again!!!”

Wa wa waaaaaaaaa.

Ivy went to the Bippity Boppity Boutique to get her hair glued to her head with copious amounts of gel and hair spray and glitter.  Notice yours truly in the background with the IPHONE!

And with that I’m calling it a day with the ole’ camera.  Maybe Animal Kingdom will provide more luck.

Animal Kingdom is BY FAR the most beautiful park in my opinion.  The theming was amazing and again my eyes were as big as saucers taking it all in.

Finally Oliver agrees to pose.  He’s so happy about it.

We found some drums.  That was fun!

I waited for ever for a family to move away from this cool drum structure thing so I could get my kids in front of it for a photograph.  Then one is missing and the other refuses to look.  Amazing.  Time for lunch.

The kids are hungry and our table at Tusker House isn’t ready.  We are in a waiting area with nothing to do.  Perfect time to wrangle them into a photograph or two.  Not bad when there are no other distractions.  The theming in this park truly was lovely.

A quick iPhone snap from inside the restaurant.  I think I may have been “enthusiastically” asking the kids to look at the camera hence the audience from the lady in the background.  But seriously.  Can’t they just LOOK for goodness sake?!?!?!?!?!?  LOL

After lunch I decide to turn my attention to objects that don’t move, speak run around, or have eyes that don’t look at me.

Of course at that point the tiny humans decide they’d like to be in on this photograph thing after all.  Hallelujah for a few half way decent images.

My best images were done at the end of the day when they were more cooperative….

Oh Disney.  I had such high hopes, but until I can have an empty park with any other family but my own, I doubt I will be able to create the kind of images I dream of.

However all kidding aside – we had an amazing trip this January and seeing my kids (and husband) enjoy the parks so much was worth every penny and minute of planning.  While the images that I got were not beautifully composed and certainly won’t stand up to any critique I love them all the same.

I did manage to get ONE that is making the wall in the house.  It’s not perfect, but it perfectly represents my little ones and our first trip to Disney World.  It will be printed large and hung on our gallery wall right where it belongs.

* I have edited this post to give a big shout out to Carolyn at Pure Magic Vacations.  We really wanted to work with a specialized Disney agent for our first trip to the World and she certainly didn’t disappoint!  I would recommend her to anyone!*

 

Love it? Pin it!!