In conversation with To The Moon & Back Wedding & Event Designs and Thomas Zitnansky Photography about their elegant style shoot at La Maquette Event venue Toronto .

In conversation with  To The Moon & Back Wedding & Event Designs

What were your first impressions of the space at La Maquette and how did you leverage the strengths of the venue?

Firstly the size of the space.  To The Moon & Back Wedding & Event Designs’ niche is intimate weddings and La Maquette is a perfect gem for that type of wedding. I loved the unique style of the decor.  It is airy, rustic, eclectic and modern – overall a very inviting with unexpected decor elements what are pleasing for the eye to rest on.  Lastly, I have always admired it’s beauty and saw it as a welcoming place.   15 years ago when the La Maquette when was still a restaurant, I was a single parent just coming off of social assistance.  A chef that use to work there, who was an acquaintance, made a special gourmet lunch for my daughter as a gift for on her 8th birthday.  It was our first fancy culinary experience!

The cake has such a rich flavourful look to it that integrates effectively with the overall design of the wedding. 

The cake was done by an up and coming cake company called Honey Butter Desserts.  Their designs carry a natural whimsical feel and I loved the fact that they use real flowers and shower them with gold.  But more importantly, having a delicious creamy cake amongst the glamorous table setting represented a type of comfort food to me at a wedding.  It’s the sort of cake that warms the heart.

In your experience what are some of the key elements of a successful wedding design? 

The key elements in a successful wedding design from my experience is:

One:  Lighting.  Whether uplights, candlelight or natural,  lighting has the amazing  ability to transform the look and mood of any space very quickly and dramatically

Two:  Most people completely brighten up when they see flowers.  They have an extraordinary ability to make people feel good.  Though some couples may opt out of having flowers at their wedding for maybe costs concerns, I think it is a decor element worth budgeting for and splurging on.

Three:  The bride and the grooms personal touch.  As a decorator, it is important to convey the personality of the couple.  So we try to incorporate little details that they ask for like pictures of family, or books if they are avid readers for example.

The florals you designed worked beautifully within  the space. and the overall look of the style shoot.  What was your process for creating the arrangements?

I have always liked, what I like to call, “fluffy fancy flowers” and I am influenced a lot by the work of florist, Karen Tran.  Though I am, an aspiring florist in my mind, most of the credit goes to Tim Radly of Tidy’s Flowers in Commerce Court.  He is amazingly inventive and talented.  For this styleshoot, we were both drawn to the ornateness of the chandelier, and chose to have it as a focal point.  We wanted to make arrangements that were as dynamic and detailed as the chandelier to create a feeling of opulence and a bit of drama.  With the cool white table linens as our canvas, we used lavender and various shades of pink to connect to the warmth of the gold.

The design of your shoot had an elegant and dynamic design. How has your education background in design come into play in your profession?

Though I was trained and mentored at Trade Sensation Events and did a staging course and Seneca College, a lot of the design work is intuitive.  I also picked up plenty skills and ideas along the way from seasoned experts in the industry.

What would be your dream wedding theme to implement at La Maquette Wedding venue?

My dream wedding at La Maquette would be to recreate Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Nights Dream. As with any great dream, there is no end to the possibilities.

If you were to design a wedding with a movie as the inspiration what would your choice be?

The last dance scene of the 1984 version of Footloose.  The scene offered a pleasant soft colour palette throughout – from the string lights, costume design as well as the constant sparkle floating through the air.  It had a fun and “thrown together” look. And of course, it would be impossible to ignore the joyous and celebratory energy of the scene, which in my opinion is what  a wedding day should feel like.  I would love to recreate the concept with the decor elements that are available today.

In conversation with Thomas Zitnansky Photography

In your career you allowed yourself room to experiment and collaborate with other artists. How does this pay off in your profession?

As a wedding photographer you’re going to work with couples and vendors with very different personalities.  I know photographers that were so much better skilled technically, but lacked social skills and as a result failed as wedding photographers.  If you lack social skills and can’t communicate your creative vision using words you’re going to have a difficult time booking clients during your consolations.  Working with artist helped me understand how to communicate my creative vision and definitely helped me with client consultations. Based on my experience it’s all about finding your unique style that sets you apart from other photographers.  Secondly, if you’re going to experiment and try different things it’s great to do that before you have paying clients.

How did you collaboration and communicating a shared vision with to the moon and back wedding & event design to achieve such a successful styled shoot?

I’ve worked with To The Moon and Back a few times.  Creatively their team knows my style and I think my style compliments their style.  As a photographer I typically have the creative freedom to do what I want because at the end the day the team is hiring me for my creative vision. 


You talk about using a lot depth of field in your photography. In the case of this shoot at La Maquette, how did you effectively use this technique?

I mostly use this technique when I want to direct your focus to a specific point in a photograph.   You can see this with the cake and the macaroon details shots.

You came from a music background and made a gradual transition to photography being your main passion. How did this happen and how does music still inform your creative process?

When I was involved in the music industry I spent a lot of time in recording studios sitting around watching other people work.  Most people don’t know this, but when you’re in a recording studio very little of your actual time is spend in the recording booth.  I purchased a Canon 30D so I could document some of the great moments that were happening around me.  Artists get really excited and have some amazing reactions when they hear their songs finished for the first time.  This is where I learned the importance of capturing movements.  Furthermore this is where I learned the importance of being a fly on wall so you’re able to get candid shots where your subjects are camera unaware.  My shift to photography didn’t happen overnight.  It took a few years but I started enjoy capturing moments more than creating music.  When I’m editing you’ll find me listening to Beach House or Sigur Ros so music is very constant in my life.

La Maquette Event Venue

To the Moon & Back Wedding & Event Designs

Thomas Zitnansky Photography 

Tidy’s Flower Shop

Bridal Path Invitations

Honey Butter Desserts