Kimon Kaketsis, dreamer, traveller and photographer in conversation about his beautiful wedding shoot of Lauren and Lauren at Berkeley Fieldhouse event venue Toronto.
What experiences led you to pursue photography?
I’ve always been a creative person. My practice has always spanned across various mediums, including sketching & painting. My love affair with photography began in high school and later I pursued my BFA in photography at Ryerson University. I was captivated by the power of photography to tap into the romanticism and nostalgia of an event, person or place.
What were some of your ideas and insights into this wedding as you went into the day?
I met with Lauren and Lauren a few times before their wedding. They painted a great picture of how they wanted their day to look and I really understood their expectations.
They wanted a true to life ‘go-with-the flow’ day and based on my previous work – I shot their friend’s wedding – they felt that I would be able to capture the beauty of their special day.
Your day of shoots have such a natural relaxed feel to them yet have a narrative quality that suggests you give subtle directions to the couples. What is your process?
My shooting style has a documentary approach and I strive to capture candid genuine moments as your wedding day unfolds. At the same time, I’m here to capture a story and am sensitive to the fact that most of these couples have not been photographed professionally before. My motto is, “I’m with you for the whole day! I’m your best friend, your coach and your cheerleader, I’m here to put you in the best possible light and make you laugh! I know we’re not all supermodels but I’ll make you look your best while looking natural.”
Looking at these photographs how would you categorize their success when you reflect on them?
The success of any album is contingent on whether the couple absolutely loves the images as much as I do. I love all the work I create because I put everything I have into it
There is a soft lens painterly look in some of the photographs. What is your inspiration for this beautiful style?
Throughout an album I tend to disperse images that have a more “fine art” or abstract quality about them. I want my couples to have the option of choosing something timeless and painterly to put up in their homes, as a piece of decorative art, and know that image came from one of the most momentous days of their lives
You created a really intimate feel in capturing the wedding reception at Berkeley fieldhouse. What are some of your methods for this success?
I focused on using the natural and ambient light, true to the way the venue looks. When my clients look back on their images, I want them to remember exactly how it looked and felt.
In many cases you have a great ability to chose the distance to capture your subjects and frame them in a poignant manner. How did you master this ability?
From years of experience, I’ve gained the intuition of how to capture the whole scene, in addition to the special, intimate moments.
You state on your About page, ”Ask me about my photography I’ll tell you about nostalgia, identity, relationship, culture and memory.” How did you apply these principles at this stunning wedding?
As a maker of images, I am concerned with extending the forms of the photographic portrait to better represent each subject in a more complex way. Everyone has layered identities and each person gives their presentation of themselves. I require to meet my couples and clients before hand to get to know them, learn their stories, in order to apply these principles. I also understand that a wedding day is a pivotal moment in a couple’s timeline. I want to create something timeless for future generations to cherish, so they may look back on their history the same way we look back on ours.
When you were going over the photographs from Lauren and Lauren’s wedding day what were you most pleased with and what were some pleasant surprises?
I was most pleased with how happy they both were and they were not reserved to show it. They were not posed, they were completely themselves. This lead to many pleasant surprises! Which I think is evident when you look over the album.
You maximized the setting of the Berkeley Fieldhouse to its fullest potential exploring all the settings. What is your process for scouting, sourcing and creating these epic pictures?
I am very familiar with the Fieldhouse, having photographed there multiple times before, so I know all its beautiful nooks and crannies. It is also my goal to fully represent the place you spent the best day of your life with your family and friends. I want you to look back and get the full sense of your surroundings.
The still life shots of the bouquets on the roof create a stunning portrait for the couple to have.
Bouquets deserve their portraits too! Again, I strive to take a beautiful and interesting photos of all details of a wedding. In a way I build a beautiful archive of all the details from the day.
You took the time and care to chronicle and capture the wedding decor and beautiful details that made up the wedding day. How do you shift your approach when shooting the setting of a wedding day?
I truly believe a wedding photographer has to wear many hats, from being a lifestyle photographer, a photojournalist, a fashion/editorial photographer, and portrait photographer. This includes shooting still life of the environment & the food! Like I mentioned above, I’m building an archive of every element of the day.
How do you approach and position yourself for capturing each of the critical moments at the wedding ceremony?
Experience, I like to get the perspective that one of the guests would have, I want the narration of the day to seem like you where there as an observer. Also, it’s extremely important for me that the guests get an uninterrupted experience of your wedding. Basically I’m quick on my feet, i know what to anticipate, in other words I’m a ninja.
How does your experimentation and exploration of your practise as a photographer build your abilities and vision as a wedding photographer?
I travel a lot to help fuel my creativity, to challenge myself in new settings and stay inspired. I bring each of these new experiences to every new shoot.
How do you approach and seek out lighting in your process of taking pictures?
I have a fine art back ground, we were trained to study light in paintings and photographs. I also have commercial training, so I know how to control light. Light has become intuitive to me and I know how to utilize it. I essentially chase it.