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A few weeks ago, I packed up my bags and headed to stunning California for a 2 day photography workshop led by talented wedding and portrait photographer, Ben Sasso.

I try to attend some kind of workshop or creative gathering every year, and was so glad when my pal and fellow Toronto wedding photographer, Tamara Lockwood, let me know about this one that she was attending (she can be seen below, just killing it in front of the camera!) Going to workshops and conferences is a really important part of being a creative small business owner, especially when you tend to spend most work days slaving behind a computer, at home, for hours (days) on end. I put a lot of love into my couples’ photos and spend a lot of time doing so, but it can often feel isolating. Getting together with creatives, learning from each other and sharing in our similarities and differences is a great way to grow, as well as it gives you a chance to connect with other people who are in the same boat as you. I really liked Ben’s approach to education- he is very transparent and is a huge advocate for supporting community over competition. Learning new or different ways of doing things in my business is obviously always beneficial, but sometimes it’s also reassuring to see that I’m doing things the same way as photographers that I look up to.

Ben had some amazing ‘co-hosts’ and helpers at the workshop, and they all produce amazing work (plus they’re like Instagram superstars), so be sure to check them out! Benj Haisch, Katch Silva, and Ryan Longnecker. We were also lucky to have Liana and Brian hop in front of our sea of cameras, to do some modeling for us as we worked on posing. Ben and Benj did some portraits of us too, so you can see those below too (including the Photoshopped masterpiece, created by Ryan!)

I thought it’d be nice to share some photos from the workshop and to give my couples an idea of what I’m up to during the winter when the weddings slow down. I’ll be sharing more from my trip to California soon- I’ve got a session from Calla Lilly Valley in Big Sur and an engagement session from Sonoma coming to the blog soon!

xo Jenn

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Jenn Kavanagh Photography - Foster Workshop

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Jenn Kavanagh Photography - Foster Workshop

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I’m always searching for ways to show my couples some love and gratitude for choosing me as their wedding photographer, especially something that can be personalized for each client. Earlier this year, I came across an amazing company called Chasing Lockets, who offer beautiful custom made photo lockets and thought they would make an amazing gift (and a wonderful surprise!) In 2014, I’ve been gifting these as a surprise to my brides after their engagement shoot, and so far the feedback has been phenomenal! About a month ago, I heard from Lukas & Suzy Van Dyke (who are the brains and creators behind Chasing Lockets, as well as talented wedding photographers, community creators, wedding venue owners, love spreaders, and new parents….no big deal) who had a wonderful idea involving spreading love and surprising some important people. Chasing Lockets hooked me up with 3 lockets and then I was tasked with choosing who I would give them to, and why.

The first locket I gifted was to an amazing bride of mine from 2014- Laura, who was married at the Cambridge Mill in October. I decided to surprise her with a locket because even though she didn’t do engagement photos (one of the few wedding traditions we just couldn’t get her fiancée on board with!) I really wanted her to have something special from me from her big day. Laura has been a huge supporter of my photography over the years and booked me so far in advance for her wedding, so I knew that us spending her wedding day together would be a dream. The outside of Laura’s locket has a photo I took of the custom made chalkboard sign, designed by Elise from Creative-E.

Photos by: www.jennkavanagh.com

The next locket I put together was for my friend Noelle, who has spent many a Saturdays with me this year, second shooting for me and keeping me company all day! Noelle has such a lovely, calming presence on a wedding day and really helps keep me in check, even when things get behind schedule. She is the coolest mama I know and has two beautiful daughters. I incorporated a photo of her little family on the inside, and the photo on the outside was from a wedding we shot together in the spring that had some beautiful cherry blossoms on the property.

Photos by: www.jennkavanagh.com

The last locket I got to make was actually for me! I hadn’t ordered one for myself yet, so this was the perfect opportunity to grab one. It took me a long time to decide what to put on it, but I finally ended up designing a little graphic for the outside that says ‘All you need is love’ with a photo of Nick and I on the inside. The photo is of the two of us doing yoga together at sunset on the beach in Nosara, Costa Rica. Nick has been a huge part of my business for the last few years, and is always someone I can bounce ideas of off, or gush over new photos with (okay, admittedly, I’m the one gushing but he sits through it all patiently!) Last winter, we went on a huge trip together in Central America and it was such an amazing time. I’m basically obsessed with him (haha!)

I just want to give a huge shout-out to Lukas and Suzy from Chasing Lockets, and say thank you for involving me in this special project and for making such beautiful gifts for my clients!

Photos by: www.jennkavanagh.com

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