Tag Archives: atelier des modistes

Supporting the Renaissance of Film

09 | 30 | 2014

Gia Canali PhotographyThose of you who know me well know that I’m pretty quiet about how I make my photographs lest the details distract (or detract!) from an emotional connection to my images. But, there’s good cause for me to break my silence and interrupt the regularly scheduled wedding-photo tips today.  CineStill Film has launched a Kickstarter campaign to start manufacturing a medium format version of one of my favorite films, 800T!  800T is converted from motion picture film and it’s a high speed tungsten balanced film.

Gia Canali Photography

first dance at the parker palm springs by gia canali

I love 800T because it lets me make photos with a gorgeous color film in low light where normally my only choices would be digital (for color) or black and white (for film).  I’ve been loving getting the best of both worlds—I can’t get enough of it in 35mm!—and would be over the moon to get to shoot this film in medium format.  I’m already dreaming of the kind of images I’ll be able to make with Cinestill and my Rollei, Contax, Mamiya, and my little army of toy cameras, too!

girl leaping by gia canali

This film is super versatile, so much so that I get great results shooting it in low light and everywhere I’m not really supposed to—in full daylight, in mixed light, window light, just after the sun goes down, et cetera.  The colors are rich and unique with a fairly stunning dynamic range.  It sounds kind of obvious, but this emulsion really does have a cinematic feel.

Gia Canali PhotographyIf the project gets funded, not only will we get to make images with this one very special film stock, it’ll open up the door to other stocks and different formats, which is pretty heartening news altogether.  These Cinestill guys are choosing to BE the difference they wanted to see in the analog film industry!

back of the bride's beautiful gown by gia canaliintimate dinner reception table top by gia canaliindoor ballroom reception by gia canali

Quite a lot of you readers and clients are photographers yourselves, and many of you love film as much as I do.  And we are all hoping beyond all hope that we get to keep making photographs with real analog film for our whole lives, so, let’s support this together.  Every roll we shoot really counts in ensuring a future of film.  And I believe whole-heartedly that we should put our money where our priorities are. So if you have a medium format camera that’s hungry for film, please go to the Kickstarter page and consider backing the project and share it around with all your filmy friends!

Gia Canali Photography

group portrait on beach at sunset by gia canali

All photographs by Gia Canali on cinestill 800T



J + TJ’s Rustic Handmade Colorado Ranch Wedding (With Rainbows and a Rodeo Arena Reception)!

08 | 03 | 2011

Now, finally on to Jess and TJ’s actual wedding day!  By the morning of the wedding, it really did feel—as Jess and TJ had so hoped and schemed—like everyone there was one big family.   We woke before dawn to take in the “jingle” with some of TJ’s cousins.  Then, everybody else began readying themselves for the day.  I’m not sure what I could really say to do this wedding justice, so I’m keeping my notes uncharacteristically brief.

Jess and TJ saw each other for the first time in a wide open field, a couple of hours before the ceremony was scheduled to start.  We had planned to make a bunch of portraits during that time … but it started to rain just as they finished with that first quiet moment, so we retreated to stay dry.  Wedding party and immediate family portraits were made in the little sliver of shelter under the eaves of the barn.

Jess’s grandfather was quite the photographer in his day, and he even used to make carbro prints (the vintage photographic process on which I have the second biggest crush).  So when he asked me to make a portrait of him (with his bow tie!), I obliged using one of my favorite vintage cameras.

Jess and TJ’s wedding ceremony was perhaps my favorite part of the whole weekend.  It took place atop a cliff overlooking an incredible valley.  We loved how they made the ceremony so, so personal … and got everybody involved!  One friend officiated, others did readings, or sang songs.  Their dog, Midas, was the ring bearer (bearing the real rings). And Jess and TJ’s guests had sent them pieces of fabric with their reply cards to make a quilt that was incorporated into the ceremony.  Here’s what Jess says:

“I wrote the ceremony (which I would also recommend since it made it sooo personal for us) and as part of that, we did a “community blessing” where everyone in the audience held hands and connected all the way to us—as we were wrapped in the quilt with pieces of them all around us. It was one of my favorite moments of the ceremony, and maybe one of my favorite pics from the entire wedding (maybe also because this was when it started to pour rain!). We then used the quilt as a backdrop for our photo booth which was fun because people got to go up and pick out where their piece was on the quilt. TJ and I now have the quilt on our bed and it’s an awesome reminder of that amazing moment.”

I did my best to hide under an umbrella while the rain pour downed and keep my cameras (more or less) dryish while I was shooting (although I was more conspicuous than I would have wanted to be for sure).  But I love the photos from the recessional, with light reflecting through raindrops on my lens glass.  By then, I think I’d dashed out from under the umbrella!

Guests moved to the indoor rodeo arena for dinner, dancing, and bull-riding.  Despite the enormity of the space or the fact that it was really (really!) just a barn, Jess and TJ made it feel cozy, welcoming and even (kind of, but not too) fancy.  The warm happy color palette seemed especially appropriate after a day that had gone from clear and beautiful, to dark and stormy, to rainbows …

Below: Jess and TJ’s first dance and the beginnings of a long, happy night of dancing.

The photo booth was so fun!  You might recognize the quilt, re-purposed …

Maybe the best thing, though, was the mechanical bull!  I loved seeing everybody’s best wild west moves!  Jess made the operator buck her off (although she really, really didn’t want to buck the bride).  It was so funny!

The wedding is featured {here} today on 100 Layer Cake (hooray!).  Be sure to stop back tomorrow and Friday for photographs from Jess’s bridal session and Jess and TJ’s post-wedding love shoot, plus a peek at some of their paper goods …

photographs: Gia Canali

wedding planning: Stacy McCain; wedding design, Duet Events (the bride and her friend’s design company); florals, Sweet Pea Flowers, Denver; lighting & other magic tricks, Pink Monkey Solutions; dj: DJ Smiles Davis; dessert buffet, Tee and Cakes; venue and catering: C Lazy U Ranch


Dress Shop Visit: Atelier Des Modistes

01 | 07 | 2010


Yesterday, I visited Atelier Des Modistes in San Francisco.   I wanted to meet Suzanne Hanley, the designer behind two of my favorite brides’s dresses and to see the beautiful shop where she and her crew design and make the gowns.  We had fun talking shop and while I sat there, chatting, I wondered yet again why, even though I had my dress made for me, I never went dress shopping when I was engaged.  Sigh.  Anyway.  Suzanne’s shop is certainly the best of both worlds (lots to try on and lots to dream up out of your own imagination).  I dearly hope there’s a big return to handmade in 2010.  What better than a one-of-a-kind dress designed and sewn just for you?

A girl can’t carry all her gear all the time, so I’m sharing photos from my iPhone.*  Below: store front sign, capelet (yes, please!), cards, behind the scenes with the best inspiration wall ever, super sewing machine, lace and ruffles galore, wedding gowns and polaroids (two of my favorite things, you know), and more images of the lovely dress-in-the-window (may some lucky bride swoon over it!).

sign capelet cutest business card holder. ever. inspiration wall inspiration wall THE sewing machine wedding gown lace lovely lavender dress wedding gowns and polaroids the dress in the window dress in the window

photos: Gia Canali, via her iPhone.

*Yes, indeed, we photographers have just as much fun as everybody else with our cell phone cameras.