OneTwo Photography blog, Hamilton photographer

Baby Mateo - Hamilton Newborn Photographer

You never know what to expect with a newborn session, the baby may fuss throughout or sleep like an angel.  Even their little bladders are a surprise.   The baby is definitely the boss.  That was definitely the case with Mateo, he did his best to stay awake for all the excitement but eventually couldn't help it and went down for a nap, albeit a quick nap.  But once asleep, I was able to get some great shots.  He has the cutest pouty lips!  Hope you think he's as cute as I do.

To see more of Mateo, click here!

How Country Feels

Last week I got together with a friend for a photoshoot.  While we were coming up with shoot ideas, I originally gravitated towards a downtown or waterfront shoot but the more I thought of it, I realized I wanted to capture Wendy's personality.   Wendy is definitely an eclectic free spirit, her Instagram feed is filled with everything from the typical "foodie" and artsy selfie shots to city life and overall goofy shots.  

Now even though Wendy is from the city, she's definitely a country girl at heart.  I felt I needed to bring the city mouse to the country.  She's never been to Hamilton so I found a great spot on the mountain to showcase this cowboy boot wearing glamour girl.  

Wendy had a beautiful native american headdress that she wanted to incorporate in the shoot.  I loved the red against all the greens and browns of the landscape.  

Wendy was great to work with, and I really enjoyed the experience.  I hope she's as happy as I am with the results!

For more of Wendy's shoot, check out the archives section by clicking here.

Closeup with Billy Green and the Battle of Stoney Creek

I've been on a bit of a waterfall kick the last few months.  It's hard not to be, with such a large amount located within my city, and no one can argue the beauty of a waterfall.  One of the most accessible waterfalls in the Hamilton area is the beautiful Billy Green Falls located literally steps away from Centennial Parkway.  I was actually quite surprised how close it was, I was expecting a short hike up a stream but there it was a few steps off the road.  

It is very easy to get up close and personal with these Falls.  The bottom section is pretty low and allowed me to get right up to the falls and capture some stunning time freezing shots of water running over the shelved rocks common on the Niagara Escarpment.  The top section looks like a gorgeous veil as the water flows off the top.   I encourage everyone to check it out and make sure to keep it clean!!!

While I was researching the location, I discovered this waterfall was named after Billy Green, a scout during the Battle of Stoney Creek in the War of 1812.  His efforts in obtaining the American password helped the British to victory.  I'm always fascinated to learn about local history.  The Hamilton and Niagara area is tied very strongly to the War of 1812.  I can't help but imagine soldiers stepping foot on the same soil two hundred years ago.   Much of that history can be explored at nearby Battlefield Park and Museum located at King Street and Centennial Parkway.

When visiting Battlefield Park, be sure to check out the Nash-Jackson House (pictured bottom right) a wonderful example of an original colonial home.  As well as the Battlefield House and Battlefield Monument,  which was erected in 1912 on the centennial anniversary of the Battle.

So much beauty in all this history.  Isn't Hamilton great?

Day drinking at Chedoke Falls

Many of you may not know that Hamilton is otherwise known as the City of Waterfalls, with over 100 listed waterfalls.  There are definitely the popular ones like Webster's Falls, Tews Falls, Albion Falls, the Devil's Punchbowl and recently in the news; Tiffany Falls which sadly was the scene of tree falling accident which claimed the life of a young woman.  As beautiful as these waterfalls are, they are still dangerous.  Most of them are located on the Niagara Escarpment which can prove to be some dangerous terrain, both in height, loose rock, and trees always a danger.  There are many groups of volunteers out there who take great pride in conserving and educating people on these waterfalls.  I recently saw a Facebook post highlighting the lesser known Chedoke Falls.  It's probably one of the most beautiful and secluded waterfalls in Hamilton.  I knew immediately I had to go visit it.  

Chedoke Falls isn't accessible by any trail and I was forewarned to bring waterproof boots, which proved to be a necessity.  You can access the side trail by parking at the Chedoke Civic Golf Course.  Head east down the trail and you'll eventually be able to hear the sound of the waterfall.  I made my way off the trail and found Lower Chedoke Falls as well a old man enjoying a cold "beverage".  Knowing there was no trail to reach the falls, I asked him if he was familiar with the area and if there was an easier way to proceed.  He shared that he makes the trek to the falls all the time.  He said to stick to the left, or right, he wasn't sure but said look for the rope and it should only take about fifteen minutes!  

With that advice I set forth up the creek, wading through the ankle high rushing water and navigating the gigantic boulders.   I stopped momentarily by Lower Chedoke Falls to take some shots.  While these falls were impressive, and I'm proud of these shots, I was determined to reach my destination.  

I ventured forth not knowing if I'd lose my footing and end up in the creek.  I tried looking for the easiest path up the creek but eventually I ended up at a point where the creek was too deep and the boulders too high to climb.  I looked to the right bank and there it was, the rope!  There was a small climbing rope attached to a tree to help climb the bank.  The old man was right!  However, I think the fifteen minutes was a gross exaggeration.  After a gruelling hike, I could see the falls in the distance.  I came closer and reached the bottom pool.  It was just as spectacular as I was expecting.  Up top I could see the road and a few pedestrians walking along the sidewalk, which is the most common view of Chedoke Falls along Scenic Drive.  While I know that the bottom of the falls is new, breathtaking discovery, but not many people have seen the Falls from this perspective.  It was quite surreal.  

That surreal experience is what I love about photography.  To put it in perspective, every photograph you see, whether it be on Facebook, Instagram, your favourite magazine or even the shows we watch on tv and the movies we watch... there is someone behind that lens.  Someone physically experienced exactly what you're looking at.  That is what brings the passion to photography.  It's that effort to share your experience with the world through a lens.

After finishing shooting I ventured back, this proved quite tricky as I couldn't remember the exact path I had taken.  There was a lot of doubling back as I would go up somewhere and only realize it led me up the escarpment or led me to a point where the water was too deep to cross.  I came to a makeshift path which I hoped would lead me to the main trail, eventually it did, but I did find myself about 60 feet overlooking the creek - did I mention i'm afraid of heights!!

Anyone looking to get more information on Hamilton waterfalls should check out: 


The lonely swan underneath the bridge...

If you've ever driven on the QEW in Hamilton near the Skyway Bridge, you've probably noticed a large pond just before the Red Hill exit.  If you look closely, you'll also notice a beautiful white swan swimming in that pond.  I've driven by this pond hundreds of times and have always noticed this swan and it has always been alone.

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Isla's second birthday party!

I can’t believe this little angel is two years old!  It seems like just yesterday that I was setting up for her first birthday party and cake smash.  Looking back on it a year ago it was the very beginning of OneTwo Photography, she was the inspiration to transform a hobby into a successful business.   Thank you Isla for being such a cutie and a pleasure to photograph, when you want to of course! 

Isla had quite the party this last weekend.  She was definitely spoiled with a homemade doughnut cake, plenty of little friends.  Like most toddlers she had so much fun opening presents, I don’t know what two year old says “Oh My Goodness” while opening presents ! Everything from a new playset , a new car from grandma, to cute little outfits and fashion accessories for a chic two year old.  Obviously her friend Colin wasn’t as impressed with the hair clips. lol

At the end of the day, we had a tired little two year old going to mom for hugs.

Happy Birthday Isla.

What to expect when you're expecting...

he first few days of a baby’s life are so magical and incredible.  There is nothing in the world as precious and sweet as a brand new baby and I aim to capture exactly that on film or I guess a digital film these days.

Dreaming of Baseball

It is important to schedule your newborn session when you are still pregnant to ensure that there is availability.  We usually schedule the shoot when your baby is 6-10 days old.  This is because newborns are very sleepy at this stage and it is easier to manipulate them and pose them into the shots you’re looking for.

Newborn sessions can be done at my home studio or in your home.   Whatever you are most comfortable with is probably the best.  Most likely that will be your home as it’s lot of work to get the baby out of the house in that first week and I’m sure you’re very tired and don’t want to travel.  The choice is yours.  If the session takes place in your home, I ask that a room with lots of available natural light is chosen and tidied up before the shoot.

Our newborn sessions usually last anywhere from 1-2 hours but, with that said, I never limit my time and will shoot until I get the shots that I need!  Babies are on their own schedule and during your session we will be following it :-) 

Below is some information for what to expect during your newborn session to help you prepare for your photo shoot!

  • Plan to feed your little one just before your session. A well fed baby is a happy, calm baby.
  • Please don’t feel stressed if we need to stop to allow your baby time for a feed, change or just be soothed by Mom or Dad. Babies have their own schedule and I make sure to account for that.
  • Please don’t panic if the baby goes to the bathroom on me or on any of the equipment :-)  This is expected in EVERY newborn shoot.
  • We clean all of our items and wash all backgrounds and blankets after each session.
  • Please have plenty of diapers and wipes to use during the session as well as a change of clothes for mom and dad in case the baby does have an accident on you.
  • Please have a black/white t-shirt for yourself and your spouse/partner. This is an important element needed in the process of capturing many popular poses with the parents.
  • We love for you to have any important or sentimental items with you to incorporate into the session.  I love handmade quilts, blankets, hats, bonnets or anything that has special meaning… It really adds some personalization to the session.
  • Clothing for babies should be kept very minimal and simple…less is better in almost every case.   Most of the portraits will be done naked or swaddled.  That being said, before the session have diapers and/or clothes on loosely to avoid any red indentations on the skin.
  • I will have on hand a space heater and something to play soothing music, the white noise like ocean waves are particularly conducive to helping your baby sleep right through the session.

I hope this guide helps and I’m always a phone call or email away if you have any questions before your session.

 Henderson newborn

Hamilton Book Project

After living in the Hamilton area for a few years and exploring the area with my camera, I began to realize something; Hamilton was getting a bad rap.  Everyone thinks of Hamilton as a dirty and polluted industrial city with redeeming qualities.  Well they are wrong.  Hamilton is a beautiful place.  It has tons of character and charm.  It's many diverse neighbourhoods have so much to offer.  Whether it be the old charm of Westdale, the architectural beauty of downtown, the amazing waterfronts on Lake Ontario and the inner harbour or the countless areas to explore nature's beauty with too many to name.  Few people know Hamilton is known as the waterfall capital with over one hundred listed waterfalls.  

So with all this beauty to be found I decided to make it a project of mine to find and highlight this city.  At the start of 2015, I began a Kickstarter crowdfunding project in hopes of funding a printed book.  Unfortunately my goal was not reached.  This little setback will not stop me however.  I'm still out there with my camera and sometimes dog in tow.  The deep freeze of February kept me at bay on some days but I decided to brave the weather visited Bayfront Park and the port area.  I came across the HMCS Haida, a historic Canadian battleship.  It floated majestically in the frozen water, a few hundred ducks taking refuge around it's limited open water.  I continued along the port braving the strong wind coming off the lake.  Everything was frozen, ice was everywhere.  I later came across an older gentleman enjoying an afternoon skate on a freshly cleaned sheet of ice.  After that the wind was too much for me and I headed home.

I like to call this a project but it really isn't.  It's just me going out there taking pictures and finding creative ways to highlight what I find.  It's just me doing what I love.  As I progress on this journey of discovery, I'll be sure to give everyone updates and share the images I collect.  Please stay tuned.



First Ever Blog!!

Well this is my very first blog and if you're reading this you're here starting this adventure with me.  Taking photographs comes very naturally to me, however blogging is something new so be patient and gentle with me.  First off, thanks for visiting OneTwo Photography, I hope you are enjoying the new site and taking a look around.   On this site, you'll find a mix of my portfolio, from newborns to engagements to some freelance work with beautiful landscapes.  In the next little while, I'll be posting tons more photos and keeping you up to date on my Hamilton Book Project, more to come on that later...  Can't give everything away on the first blog.  So enjoy the site and hopefully you keep coming back!