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Alberta

Business Spotlight: Capturing Life’s Most Memorable Moments

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Vannessa Brown is a professional birth, motherhood and family photographer specializing in the documentation of life’s “unplanned, unposed, and unexpected moments.” From a child opening its eyes for the very first time, to a father holding his wife and new baby beside the birthing pool, to a toddler gently cradling their new sibling on their lap, Vannessa is passionate about capturing the beautiful and fleeting moments of birth and life. 

With an academic background in engineering, Vannessa began to explore photography when she was pregnant with her son, and it was her research on birthing that inspired her interest in birth photography. Based in Edmonton, Alberta, Vannessa Brown Photography was officially launched in 2011, and after photographing her first birth in May 2012, Vannessa never looked back. 

As a photographer, each experience brings with it its own unique demands – for periods of up to 5 weeks, she has to be available at a moments notice, and it can take up to 50 hours to properly document a single birthing experience.


Photo Credit: Vannessa Brown Photography 

In the last 8 years, she has documented nearly 100 births in hospitals all across Edmonton, in birthing centres, operating rooms and midwifery clinics, as well as home births in bedrooms, bathrooms and living rooms. “It is an honor,” she says, “I am so grateful and thankful to the families who trust me to be a part of these life-changing events.” 

Much of her focus and creative approach has been informed by her own experience as a mother of two. From the moment of the actual birth, to the weeks and months after bringing a new child home, it is easy for special memories and moments to get lost among busy schedules and exhaustion. “You think as a mom, you’ll always remember, but you don’t,” she says, “it breaks my heart that I don’t remember all of the little things.” 

According to Vannessa, it is common for clients to be on the fence regarding birth photography. However, having been on both sides of the camera herself, as both the photographer and the photographed, “It is worth it,” she states simply, “these are details that are unique to each family’s journey. They are priceless.” 

In addition to birth photography, the packages offered by Vannessa Brown Photography include the Family Documentary Session, the Motherhood Session and the Family Mini Session, all specifically designed to capture life as it is. With a focus on real personalities and authentic family dynamics, Vannessa captures the moments you never knew you didn’t want to forget. Sessions can take place in your home or on location at a favorite local restaurant, park, or play area, creating real and lasting memories beyond the classic “Sunday best” family portraits. 

To learn more about birth, motherhood and family photography by Vannessa Brown Photography, visit https://www.vannessabrown.com.  

 

For more stories, visit Todayville Calgary.

Alberta

Cirelli scores in OT, Lighting beat Isles to reach Cup Final

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EDMONTON — Five years after socially distancing from the Prince of Wales Trophy and losing in the Stanley Cup Final, the Tampa Bay Lightning got their hands on and arms around it to embrace their Eastern Conference championship.

Anthony Cirelli scored in overtime and Tampa Bay beat the New York Islanders 2-1 in Game 6 of the East final Thursday night and go back to the Cup Final for the first time since 2015, where it’ll face the Dallas Stars. Injured captain Steven Stamkos, who wouldn’t even stand near the trophy then out of superstition, walked on to the ice to accept it along with the Lightning’s entire travelling party.

“It didn’t work last time, so we tried obviously touching the trophy this year,” alternate captain Victor Hedman said. “That was a no-brainer for us. We’re not superstitious but obviously didn’t touch it last time, so this year we did. That’s the end of it. We won one trophy and now we’re going for the next one.”

Stamkos, Hedman, Alex Killorn and Ryan McDonagh were the first players to shake deputy commissioner Bill Daly’s hand inside the NHL bubble that has had zero positive coronavirus test results. It mattered to the team’s leaders to have Stamkos there even though he hasn’t played since February.

“We wanted all the team captains up there and wanted Steven a part of it,” McDonagh said. “He’s been a huge part of this run even without playing. Definitely a special moment for that group and then to get the whole team involved: great moment.”

Players and coaches screamed with joy after taking a team photo with Daly. That came minutes after they streamed on to the ice to celebrate Cirelli’s goal 13:18 into overtime.

Tampa Bay ended each of its three series victories in overtime. Winger Patrick Maroon, the only player in the final in back-to-back years after winning with St. Louis in 2019, deadpanned, “My finger nails are gone.”

Only New York lasted more than five games, pushing the Lightning to their limits before their talented core got them into the final.

“We got close,” Islanders coach Barry Trotz said. “We could see the mountain top, but we couldn’t get to the mountain top.”

Now the Lightning are four wins from that mountaintop despite being without Stamkos all post-season and missing top centre Brayden Point for two games against the Islanders. They can thank defenceman Hedman for scoring his ninth goal of the playoffs, Nikita Kucherov for playing 28:22 and Andrei Vasilveskiy making 26 saves while his teammates peppered Islanders goaltender Semyon Varlamov with 48 shots.

And Cirelli, who came back from an injury scare to score the Lightning’s biggest goal in years.

“The emotions are so high,” Cirelli said. “We worked all year. Our goal is to be playing for the Stanley Cup. We’re here now. I think it’s every kid’s dream to be in this situation. I think we’re excited and we’re ready to go.”

Cirelli appeared to injure his right knee on a collision with Islanders captain Anders Lee in the second period. He returned in the third, and coach Jon Cooper said Cirelli was “doing it basically on one leg.”

“Trying not to disclose injuries but it was pretty clear on that,” Cooper said. “For him to come back was pretty remarkable.”

Tampa Bay is trying to win its first championship since 2004. It’s the first time in franchise history the Lightning didn’t play a seven-game series in the conference finals.

It wasn’t easy getting to this point against an opponent willing to rope-a-dope, block shots and wait to pounce on chances. The Islanders got their break in Game 5 to prolong the series when Tampa Bay defenceman Kevin Shattenkirk fanned on a shot to pave the way for Jordan Eberle’s double-overtime goal, but they were on the wrong side of it Thursday.

“We had a chance to win,” said Varlamov, whose 46 saves were a single-season playoff careeer high. “Disappointing, of course. We want to go to the final and I think we had a chance to go to the final and play there, but we lost. Season’s over.”

NOTES: Hedman’s ninth goal tied him with Bobby Orr and Brad Park for the third most among defencemen in a single post-season. … Tampa Bay improved to 10-1 in one-goal games and 6-1 in overtime this post-season. … With Point back after missing Game 5 with injury, Carter Verhaeghe was scratched. … Adam Pelech was ruled unfit to play, and Noah Dobson made his NHL playoff debut in his place with the Islanders again dressing seven defencemen. Dobson, who last played in exhibition action in late July, became the first player born in the 2000s to dress for the Islanders in a playoff game.

UP NEXT

Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Final against the Western Conference-champion Dallas Stars is Saturday night.

___

More AP NHL: https://apnews.com/NHL and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports

Stephen Whyno, The Associated Press


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Alberta

Alberta limiting asymptomatic testing of COVID-19 to priority groups

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EDMONTON — Alberta is shifting priorities for asymptomatic testing of COVID-19 to reduce wait times.

The province’s chief medical health officer says testing is no longer recommended for those with no symptoms and no suspected exposure to the novel coronavirus.

Dr. Deena Hinshaw says voluntary asymptomatic tests will continue to be offered for priority groups.

Those groups include school staff, health-care workers, residents and staff in congregate settings, the homeless and those travelling.

She says Alberta was the first province to offer voluntary asymptomatic testing to all residents in May.

But she says asymptomatic cases are rare, as there are about seven positive cases out of 10,000 of those tests.

The province reported 146 new infections and 1,483 active cases on Thursday. Outbreaks have been declared at 10 schools.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Sept. 17, 2020.

The Canadian Press

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