Me :)

About Justine Russo

I love to photograph love. Love between people who are light-hearted, a little bit goofy, who arent afraid to laugh at themselves. Those who cherish time outdoors, who arent afraid to try something new, and who believe that time spent with family, is the BEST time spent.
I genuinely believe a good laugh can cure any bad day. I am tall! (6foot1 tall!), I love to cuddle up with a good book and a cup of tea, I have a collection of blankets for my couch. My favourite season is usually whichever one is coming up next and I could never live where I cant see the mountains everyday.

www.justine-russo.com

Trevor and Tiffany: Mount Baker Engagement

September 18th, 2014

Trevor and Tiffany have quickly become some of our closest friends. We met them at Dan and Emily’s wedding back in May in Mexico. It was instant friendship! We were joined at the hip from the minute they arrived! It felt like we had known them our whole lives! Marco and Trevor I swear are brothers somehow. Their bromance is so cute :) (But don’t tell them I said that!)

My favourite part of the story, is that a month or so after we all got back from Cancun, we had a “We miss Mexico” BBQ and Tiff and Trevor told us they were engaged!!!! We instantly started throwing around ideas for their wedding and I can’t WAIT for October!

Trevor reminds me of a 5 year old but in a grown mans body. But in the absolute BEST way. He always has this sneaky look on his face like he’s up to no good, and he usually is. He’s protective, and is always looking out for Tiff, and making sure she’s happy. He’s passionate about working out and has dreams of opening his own gym one day! (Hopefully SOON!) He spent countless hours helping us move and I am SO grateful he’s in our lives!

Tiffany is one of the strongest women I have ever met. Inside and out. This girl can workout! She also helped us move and I was a bit (okay a lot) envious of how effortlessly she picked up boxes that there was no way in heck I could pick up!! She is such an amazing friend!! She has such a big heart and I know she’s always there when I need a wine buddy! Hearing how she talks about Trevor is just the best. She seriously loves him and I love it!

Their engagement photos turned into a whole afternoon and evening adventure with Emily and Dan joining us at Mount Baker, and then dinner and drinks at El Nopal!

Tiff and Trevor we are SOOOO glad we met you in Mexico!! Here’s to MANY MANY more trips together! :)

 

See? He’s like a 5 year old! haha I love both of their faces!

 

I told them to look at each other romantically. haha I LOVE Trevor’s interpretation of romantic ;)

 

 

Jeff and Tess: Hotel Eldorado, Kelowna Wedding

September 15th, 2014

Jeff fist pumped as he walked down the aisle on the rooftop at the Hotel Eldorado in Kelowna.  He high fived his groomsmen as they walked up after him. These two had a first look on top of Knox Mountain, and even though he had already spent a few hours with her, he was SO excited to see her walk down the aisle!

Jeff loves superheros. Tess is a teacher. They both love watching the food network together on TV, and created custom made root beer float doughnuts for their reception. These two laugh together the way all couples should laugh together….the fully committed, nose scrunching, no sound comes out kind of laugh.

 

J&T-44It was almost friends off when I saw which hockey team Jeff cheered for. I had a really hard time photographing those cuff links ;) But with it being his wedding day and all I figured I could suck it up ;)   (GO HABS GO!!)

Tess and Jeff had each written their own vows for each other, but were nervous about saying them infront of everyone. So they decided to say them privately to each other shortly after their first look. 

Their wedding party was AMAZING! Between pants that were too tight they had to get each other to tie their shoes, and conversations on how to get pregnant with a boy rather than a girl, these are friends for life. 

Each of the groomsmen decided they should enter the reception and do something fun. I say they nailed it! 

I LOVE how Jeff and Tess did their first dances! They had two! Each was their parents wedding songs. They took turns dancing with each other and each of their parents. It was amazing to honor their parents and their marriages.

 

A HUGE thank you to my handsome second shooter ;) Marco you’re the best! I LOVE when we get to work together!! :) 

Tristan and Julie: Cherry Creek Estate Wedding, Cranbrook BC

September 4th, 2014

Tristan and Julie had the most spectacular wedding this past July at Cherry Creek Estate nestled in the Rocky Mountains in Cranbrook BC.

The weekend started off with a bit of panic. Due to a HUGE accident on the highway, I came within minutes of missing my plane. MINUTES. I RAN. Didn’t have time to check my bag, and was the last person to board. But I made it.

My amazing second shooter for the wedding, Stephanie, picked me up at the airport, and we headed out for a brief tour of Cranbrook. I instantly fell in love.

We headed to Tristan’s parents house for the rehearsal dinner, and never before in my life have I felt more welcomed by strangers. There were hugs, and laughs and story sharing. It was amazing. They included us in the meal prep which was one of the most unique and fun methods I have EVER seen! They cooked an entire dinner in old fashioned milk tins! They loaded it up with potatoes, carrots, turnips, onions, corn and sausage, hammered the lids on, lifted them up over a burner and let them steam while the family relaxed around the backyard. It was one of the most amazing meals I have ever had!

The next day we headed out to Cherry Creek Estate. This by far, may be, one of my most favourite weddings ever!! Tristan and Julie are both adventurous and sentimental and I loved connecting with them on both those aspects! Tristan and Julie did something so remarkable! They planned their ENTIRE wedding from China. They moved there two years ago to teach English, and made the decision to go within a few days, and left a few days after that. Listening to their stories, and reading their blog over the course of their time there, it was an adventure!

Tristan’s reaction when he saw Julie walking down the aisle towards him is by far the most emotional, and moving reactions I have ever witnessed. Tears rolled down his face and he just kept saying WOW over and over again. Not gonna lie I was a teary mess behind my camera! The emotion between these two as they said their vows was amazing to see!

Listening to the speeches from their parents was the most touching part of the day for me. Tristan’s Dad said something that stuck with me so much. He believes that a persons life is a compilation of moments where you connect with other people. And every relationship you have, builds you into the person you are…makes your life what it is. He then thanked everyone at the wedding for having such an important part in helping Tristan and Julie build their lives. I loved that. I so strongly believe that too and it was obvious by everyone we met at the wedding and got the chance to talk to, they had surrounded themselves with people filled with SO MUCH LOVE.

I could go on and on for many more paragraphs about how much this wedding meant to me! Having known Julie and Tristan since college, and then getting to share in this special day with them was beyond amazing. THANK YOU so much for including me, for flying me up there to be a part of it, for making us feel SO welcome, and for taking us on an adventure with you! I will never forget it!

Love you guys so much!

After their ceremony, one of the owners of Cherry Creek loaded us up in his truck and took us to the first of the photo locations. An abandoned ranch sitting on just over 350 acres, overlooking the Rocky Mountains. To say I was in heaven would be an understatement. I had to take a moment just to stop, slowly spin around with my mouth slightly open and take it all in. I believe I said at numerous points during the day “how is this real life?!”

From there we headed up to the second spot. A small hill in the back of Cherry Creek’s property that overlooks the valley below, the Rocky Mountains, the forest and just everything amazing you could possibly imagine. I still have no words to explain how gorgeous and peaceful it was to be out there. I dream to live in a house one day with this view.

They decorated their reception with lanterns they bought in Bali while travelling there, their wine box was made of wood from Julie’s parents barn, the wooden frames were from Tristan’s Grandparents first house in Saskatoon, the tea was from a student of Tristan’s while they were both teaching in China and their guest book was a photobook of their years of adventures.

Tristan broke down at the end of his Dad’s speech, when he grabbed his guitar and his Mom and brother sang a song about finally having a girl in the family and how much it meant to them to be able to welcome Julie into their family. I don’t think there was a dry eye in the hall. 

 

Tyler and Michelle: Cranbrook Couples Session

August 26th, 2014

I was SOOO excited to see these two for a couples session in the Rockies in Cranbrook!! Michelle and I played volleyball together at UFV and I just adore her! I had heard so much about Tyler and couldn’t wait to finally meet him!

Michelle is outgoing, adventurous, and has the biggest heart. She genuinely cares about everyone she meets, and anyone who gets the chance to know her falls in love with her too! Tyler is amazing! The perfect match for Michelle and I just love watching them together! They’re goofy and they laugh so much! But then Tyler kisses her and she melts into this romantic hug that’s just the best. You two made my job SOOO easy! :)

Tyler and Michelle…it was so amazing to see you guys and hang out with you at the wedding (blogpost from the wedding coming tomorrow!) and I hope to see you soon!!!! (ps. move back to BC! haha)

Aaron and Jana: Cranbrook Couples Session

August 22nd, 2014

My flight experience into Cranbrook was definitely a fun one!! We hit the worst turbulence I have ever experienced, after almost missing my flight from a huge accident on the highway to the airport,  but oh gosh was it a gorgeous flight!

A fellow photographer met me at the airport and picked me up (THANK YOU Stephanie!!) and gave me a quick tour of the city :)

I had two couples sessions booked for that night with fellow UFV Volleyball Alumni, so we scouted out some locations, and I fell hard. I fell so madly in love with Cranbrook in that short drive around, I knew I was doomed.

The first couple we met up with was Aaron and Jana. I absolutely adore them both so much! Aaron played volleyball with my husband and we have known them for years from volleyball parties, alumni games, trips to 70 Mile for quadding and gun shooting, and so much more!! Aaron recently helped Marco get his car from first year college back on the road (Marco smiled for like 5 days straight after!) and I was so excited to see him and Jana again!

These are are ridiculously photogenic. The way Aaron looks at Jana is just the best. He’s one of those guys that’s so down to earth, so laid back, but when Jana comes  around he lights up like a little kid. I just love it! Jana you have the biggest, warmest smile and it’s impossible not to be happy when you’re around!! The only bad thing I can say, is you live much much too far away from us!

Stephanie couldn’t stop laughing at me! I was so head over heels in love with the scenery, the lighting, the mountains. I definitely DEFINITELY will be back there soon!

Stay tuned for Michelle and Tyler’s equally amazing sunset session in the Rockies tomorrow!!!! :)

 

 

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