Vermilion Wedding Photographer | A Fireman’s Wedding

Dragon Hare Studios – I have to say, I’m a sucker for a good love story and Tim and Michelle have a great one! He is a fireman, she is an environmentalist so we combined their passions and love for each other into portraits that really celebrated who they are as a couple.

It was a rainy Saturday when these two dedicated their lives to each other, but it didn’t affect the joy they had in their union. We held family portraits in the studio to keep everyone warm and dry, and the heavens cleared up long enough for us to photograph the couple in the park.

Congratulations Tim and Michelle, we wish you a lifetime full of richness and blessings. Thank you for choosing Dragon Hare as your Vermilion Wedding Photographer, we truly enjoyed working with you both!

lloydminster wedding pictures, Dragon Hare Studios

Vermilion Wedding Photographer, Dragon Hare Studios

wainwright wedding photographer, Dragon Hare Studios

Lloydminster Grad Photographer | Stylin’

Dragon Hare Studios – While many of our grads are into sports and choose to define their portraits with their favorite sports gear, many of our grads have non-sports hobbies too! If you have been considering grad portraits but are not sure what you’d like to include, give us a call at 780.853.4277! We can help with clothing suggestions and locations that will help us create the perfect grad portrait for you! Everyone is an individual, grad photos should showcase this!

For more information on our grad portraits, click here or choose “Grad Portraits” from the categories listed way down at the bottom of this page! We look forward to being your Lloydminster grad photographer!

Lloydminster Grad Photographer, Dragon Hare Studios

Grandma

There are two times in my life, while I was growing up, that I ever wore a seat belt. One was on our once a year journey to the big city of Edmonton to see my maternal Grandparents. The other, was any time I got in a vehicle with my paternal Grandma Ross.

My grandma had a little red car that she called her “puddle jumper”, and jump puddles it could – as well as clear the tops of hills, take corners on two wheels and miss colliding with stationary objects by just the narrowest of margins. Of course, all of that would be at a high rate of speed. People always tell me that I drive like a Grandma, and I burst out laughing and say “then you never met my Grandma”. When I helped my Grandma deliver the local meals on wheels, I remember climbing in the car and praying. We’d fly around corners and she’d stand that car up on it’s end when she stopped. I was always amazed that as we took the meals into their recipients that not one single pea was ever out of place. I was never sure how she managed it for she certainly left a few finger waving farmers in her dust on delivery days. Those meals never did get a chance to cool off on Grandma’s watch!

Vermilion family photographer

It never mattered to my Grandmother that I was the shyest, quietest one of the bunch of her 15 grandchildren, every time I saw her, she would touch my cheeks with her hands, kiss me and say “hello dear”. She was a little sprite of a thing – my feet were bigger than hers when I was five, and I grew taller than she at the age of 8 which isn’t saying much as my family is not known for our height! She may have been little, but she could pack a punch in her words and I knew I’d best mind myself. One day, I was heading off to school from her house as my class was being used to film a story on the twinning of highway 16. It was the “in” thing to wear little keds running shoes with no socks which is exactly what I was doing. Grandma would not let me out of the house in such a manner. I tried to explain to her how dorky it would look to wear socks but she’d have none of it – she lent me a pair, complete with pom pom’s hanging off the end. I was in horror of the fancy little socks that were a few sizes too small for my big hoofers but there was no way that tiny lady was letting me out of her house without them. All the way to school I debated the wisdom of either yanking off the pom poms or better yet, sticking them in my pockets but I valued my life! I knew if I stopped to take them off, one of her many friends would tattle on me and I’d be in for it. Imagine, my immense teenage despair when I found out the commercial was to videotape our feet getting off the school bus. Fantastic, a close up of my pom pom’ed feet. I did inform Grandma of this horror, but she of course did not see what the issue was! After that, I wore socks to Grandma’s house, even in my sandals!

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My grandmother taught me my most practical lessons in life – how to do long division, how to back up a truck into the berry bushes to get the biggest, juiciest ones from the top branches, how to butcher a chicken without missing a single feather (by handing off to Grandpa with the blow torch ready of course), how to strip a gizzard or prepare a fresh heart for the evening meal, that Bible study is an important part of life, how to let a child know that his/her best behavior was expected without ever raising a voice or a hand, how to power shop while evading the man folk (Grandpa hated stores because he would always “lose” Grandma, but really, she just knew how to shop around where he wasn’t looking for her), that a proper lady does not slurp her tea nor grip the cup as though one is holding a baseball bat, and that chicken fat makes the absolute best cookies! (seriously could have done without some of those lessons!)

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My grandma has spent the past few years locked in her memories. It was at this time, more than any other in my life, that I truly learned about her. I loved to sit with her and ask her questions, usually one was all it took. I’d ask her what it was like to go to “normal school” in the 30′s, or to teach in a one room school house and Grandma would start to tell me about life then. While it was hard to lose the Grandma I knew to her memories, it helped me to know the woman she was before she became my Grandmother. Some of my most precious memories are not from the days when she was one of my care givers, but from the days when I had to help her eat her lunch, or calm her so she could head for bed, or quiet her anxiousness when she could not find her “Willie”, my grandfather who passed four years ago this month. All I had to do was tell her Grandpa was out at the farm as the cows had gotten out, then I’d say, you know Grandma, if we wait a bit longer, we won’t get sworn at for trying to help. She’d giggle and all would be ok in her world again as we giggled about what swears our names turned into on cattle moving day. I never had her as a substitute teacher, but I saw the teacher in her come out, as she’d take my small children by their hand, and help them count or color or participate in the daily craft or listen to her as she discussed the day’s lesson plan for social studies.

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When I entered junior high, my grandma sat me down for “the talk”. It’s not what you think. See my grandmother lived with the motto “she who dies with the most great grandchildren, wins”. Each of us grandchildren got the talk at an early age – she informed us that we had one job, and one job only in life……to bless her with lots of great grandchildren! She loved each and everyone of her great grandchildren, and here she indeed was blessed. My youngest was #29, and he is not the youngest great grandchild! When I brought Kaiel to meet her, she couldn’t always remember who I was, but as soon as I said “Grandma, meet your newest great grandchild”, her arms were held up and I was told to “hand him over”. She held him, and instantly fell in love with him. I told her it was my fifth baby and she told me that I was just like her now, that she had five children too and it was the perfect number! She is one of the few people in my life that understands my joy in my large crew of children! My children enjoyed visiting great grandma, and even if she could not remember them from day to day, they, like myself, always felt her love.

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Last week, this world gained another angel in my grandmother, and yesterday her immense family packed a church to say goodbye. Again, I sat amongst the hundreds of photographs that told the history of a lifetime and had to choose just a few that would sum up my Grandma’s life. I find that a very difficult task, to narrow down 98 years into one five minute show. How do I show the world who this very dear woman was to me? One thing is for certain, all the photos showed the very heart of this family!

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On my last good visit with her, I told my Grandma that I loved her, she replied to me “I know that dear, aren’t I lucky?”. It was I that was the lucky one. God speed my dearest Grandma, your sunshine shall always be missed.

April 29, 2015 - 3:53 am

Dottie Hartwell - Beautifully written Kim!

April 29, 2015 - 4:28 am

Rhonda Whitten - Beautiful. She was a wonderful lady Kim.

April 29, 2015 - 4:29 am

Nancy Johnson Whitten - Sorry for your loss…but glad to see that you have great memories..as I did too of my papa and grandma Johnson

April 29, 2015 - 4:53 pm

Nelda Elko - What a lovely tribute Kim

April 29, 2015 - 11:20 pm

Val Gizowski - Very nice Kim. She was indeed a wonderful lady and her kindness showed at her home and at school. I feel privileged to have known her.

Lloydminster Grad Photographer | Motorcross Grad Portraits

Dragon Hare Studios – Kolby is a champion in more than one sport, he loves speed and he loves a thrill. How better to photograph him than head out to the dirtbike track in Lloydminster and become his Lloydminster grad photographer.

Kolby loves the starting gate – the mass chaos of the start and the heart stopping moment when the gates drop and 50 bikes surge forward to blend in a mass of dust around the first corner. So we put him at that place that gets his blood pumping and put his game face on!

Later, we brought him into the studio and featured his hockey accomplishments, as well as did the traditional cap/gown portrait!

Congratulations Kolby, keep on kicking butt! That determination will take you far!

Lloydminster Grad Photographer, Dragon Hare Studios, Lloydminster dirt bike

Lloydminster Grad Photographer, Dragon Hare Studios, Lloydminster dirt bike

Lloydminster Grad Photographer, Dragon Hare Studios, Lloydminster dirt bike

Vermilion Rock, Vermilion Hockey Photographer, Dragon Hare Studios

Vermilion Family Grad Photographer | Finalist for the Canadian Portrait Photographer of the Year

When I went back to school for photography, I was swept into the energy for more than 200 photographers and all of our instructors for the ten months that I was at school. That energy was such an inspiration to me and it helped me to expand my creative abilities. Once I left school, I lost that energy. Enter the Professional Photographer’s of Canada. This is a network of photographers that spans across Canada. They hold business meetings, webinars and provincial and national conventions that provide an outlet for like-minded professional photographers.

Anti-bullying, pink shirt campaign, Dragon Hare Studios

For the first few years, I was too shy to reach out. Then I started entering accreditations and print competitions and I let my ego stand in my way. I would get angry when a print failed and only felt immense frustrations. This frustration drove me to reach out to a photographer in Ontario for help. I began attending meetings, and getting involved by sitting on both provincial and national boards. I met all types of photographers from all over this great country. I began to find that creative energy again that could push me to do more, try new techniques, and master skills that I struggled with.

A year ago, I sat down at portfolio reviews at national convention with two amazing photographers. Claude, a master portrait photographer from Quebec,​ said to me “safe, safe, safe, why do you stay so safe?” and he challenged me to create a specific type of image. Tracey, a freestyle photographer from BC,​ helped me set goals that challenged me to push as hard as I could. Louise​, a commercial photographer from PEI, and Ian, an architectural photographer from Edmonton,​ became my sounding board, Padraic​ & Sonia​, portrait photographers from Ireland, were my inspiration and I went way out of my comfort zone to see what I could do. I set myself a goal of earning a best in class award at provincials and I walked away with the Alberta Portrait Photographer of the Year Award as well as two best in class awards!

Vermilion Family Photographer, Dragon Hare Studios

And now, 5 months later, I submitted four images to the National image salon. I watched the salon with my heart in my throat as I saw my images judged. There are four possible scores – not accepted, accepted, merit and excellence. Merit. Merit. Merit. And Accepted. This year, my score was good enough to end up as a finalist for the 2015 Canadian Portrait Photographer of the Year! The winner will be announced at the end of April in Niagara Falls at Canadian Imaging! There are some truly amazing photographers listed on the list of finalists, and it is a true honor just to see my name there! Check out the full list here and go visit their websites. Amazing talent!

Vermilion Grad Photography, Dragon Hare Studios

This my friends, is just the icing on the cake after a most amazing year. My PPOC family has become a very important part of my career and I am so grateful to all of those members that take the time to inspire me. Thank you Claude, Tracey, Louise, Ian, Padraic, and Sonia for helping me along my way, I cherish each of you! And to my friend Andre, whom I met through the PPOC, who has encouraged me, taught me, cheered with me and pushed me further than I could dream about, I thank you too.

But most of all, I must thank my clients who allow me the chance to create my art as it truly is an honor to get to know each of you. And finally, to make up artist Krista Niedzielski​ from Serenity Spa in Vermilion, who’s work makes me look way better!

Here’s to setting goals and chasing after them with everything you’ve got.

Vermilion Family Photographer, Dragon Hare Studios