Marie Skerl Photography »

  • Welcome

    Hi! I'm Marie :) I'm a photographer specializing in engagements, weddings and portraits and I love LOVE. I try to capture as many real, natural moments as possible. I truly enjoy getting to know my couples and clients and always try to create photos that embody their personalities as well.

    I am a photo-school graduate and have been running my own business since 2011. A little random fact about me: I hiccup at least once a day! I can almost guarantee you will hear at least one while I'm taking your photos.

    Photo by Danielle Dobson

I haven’t written all that many personal posts here, but I have been feeling the need to share. On September 16, 2017 I found out my husband passed away in a car accident. I won’t begin to express all my feelings here (because there are a lot), but I will say that without my faith, I have no idea how I could make it through this time. His memorial service was just over a week ago, we called it; Honouring Chris(t).

Losing Chris has been a shocking and painful experience, which has also left me with a lot of questions about my future. I’m still working out the details of what I will pursue now, but I am not going to stop taking photos. Of the many things I have learned from this awful experience, I have realized how important having your photo taken truly is. Without me taking all the photos I did of Chris and our life together, I wouldn’t have those visual memories. They would just be memories in my mind that would slowly fade away. How depressing that would be. So, even though Chris may have slightly cringed at me at the time for taking yet ANOTHER photo of us, I am so thankful I did.

That’s what this weekend is all about right? Being thankful. So, even though it’s incredibly hard for me right now, I am thankful for all those photos I took. I am thankful that I have the honour of capturing other people’s memories in photos. I am thankful for the many friends, families and strangers that have reached out to me. I am thankful for the kind hearts who have been bringing me food, walking Decoy, sending money, delivering flowers, writing cards and messaging me to see how I’m doing. I’m thankful for friends who have stood by me through the toughest moments of my life so far and continue to comfort me. I’m thankful for my amazing parents and brother for keeping me close. I’m thankful for my Ekren family for continuing to embrace me like one of their own, like they always have. I’m thankful for our dog; Decoy – that he was found and unharmed after the accident. Having him feels like a small piece of Chris came back to me. I am thankful for the time I had with Chris, although it was cut short, it was a time I will never forget.

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Chris’ memorial service was on September 30, 2017 and for those that weren’t able to attend or for those who want to read it again, this was what I said through my tear soaked eyes and shaky voice:

Honouring Chris

Before I begin I want to thank everyone that has come out today, it truly warms my heart to see all these lives that Chris’ life has touched. Chris had an ability to make friends wherever he went and he genuinely cared about each person he spoke with. It was easy to talk to him; he was quiet but relatable and accepting of everyone. A few times when we were dating he even stopped to buy lunch for homeless men that we passed on our walk, he was constantly thinking of others. Although he may have seemed like this strong, tough man who loved the outdoors and sports, he also had such a wonderful, big heart and generous spirit, that’s what drew me most to him.

As most of you will know Chris and I got married last year September 10, 2016 after having dated for 7 years. We celebrated our first wedding anniversary recently and were so excited about it. I had always heard that the first year of marriage would be the hardest. While the first few months were a little up and down as we got used to living with each other, the rest were incredible. If that was the hardest part, we were looking at a very bright future ahead. We were dreaming and making so many plans; we bought a home, got a dog, we wanted babies, eventually a farm and more dogs. We wanted to be the next Chip and Joanna Gaines; a husband and wife team building and designing homes together. We were so happy. So content just being with each other. It was blissful.

I still have a hard time believing Chris is gone. It took a couple days after I got the awful news that I finally had a moment alone. I got into Chris’ truck and wept. I prayed that God would show me a sign that Chris was really in Heaven. I knew his heart, but I just wanted a sign for myself to know and feel at peace. I spent a few more minutes in the truck just sitting in the passenger seat and then headed upstairs to our condo. Some of my friends were present and one of them noticed the most beautiful, vibrant sunset happening outside. I excitedly said, “That’s the sign!” That was the sign I had been wanting. It was the most gorgeous red/pink sunset I have ever seen and it took up our entire view from the balcony. As I stood out there with Decoy (our dog) beside me, a flock of geese flew overhead and some people blaring country music pulled into the nearby restaurant. So just in case I didn’t catch it, this was definitely God letting me know Chris was with Him. That has given me the peace and strength to continue on each day.

These last several days were never something we imagined. I still hear Chris’ voice in my head all the time, telling me sweet things or making fun of me (in a loving way). Most people didn’t get to see the cute, sensitive side of Chris that I got to experience. He loved to hold me, kiss my cheek and tell me how beautiful I am everyday he got home from work. He was so proud of how much my cooking was improving and when we would pray before dinner he always thanked God for “his amazing wife.” He found so much joy in funny little videos and songs, we silly danced around the house all the time. I’m sure our neighbors must have heard us laughing quite often. Chris liked to call it “family time” whenever we were on the couch watching a show and snuggling with Decoy. He would never let a day go by without telling me that he loved me. Even when I was mad at him on the phone, he would say “I love you Marie” and wait for me to say it back because we couldn’t hang up without me saying it back. I always said it, I always did love him and I’m so glad that we made sure to do that and say those words to each other. I can’t emphasis enough how important it is to let your significant others and family know how much you love them everyday and to cherish every moment.

One of the most special moments, which I will never forget, was our wedding day. It was the Best Day Ever. It was filled with so much fun, kindness, joy and love. Such wonderful speeches were made and we danced our little hearts out. We didn’t make it home til 5:30 in the morning – we just didn’t want it to end. After the wedding Chris really liked being able to say “You’re my wife!” and I would happily respond with “You’re my husband!” Then we would just laugh and smile at each other in a way that felt so comfortable and right. I remember our vows from our wedding and hold them dear to my heart. I want to share them with you all today, slightly revised.

 

Christopher Raymond Ekren,

I started falling for you when I was 17 painting your face green for our high school’s Wizard of Oz musical. After 2 months of dating I knew I loved you and wanted to tell you, but you said it first when you signed my yearbook. I am so happy you did. Through these past 8+ years you encouraged me and challenged me in all aspects of life. We have been through a lot together and with all the ups and downs we continued to grow and strengthen our relationship. You changed me for the better.

 

Chris, I love your sense of humour even though I couldn’t tell if you were being sarcastic or serious half of the time,

I love that you were ambitious and hard working but knew when it was time to relax and enjoy the little moments,

I love the way your eyes lit up and you smiled like a child when I gave you a gift that you didn’t even know you wanted until you opened it,

I love your curly hair, your green eyes, your perfect eyelashes and your handsome face,

I love how safe I felt when I lay in your arms listening to your heartbeat,

I love how much you valued family and I wish I could have seen you as a father one day. You would have been such a great dad.

I love that you were strong and honourable, yet warm and compassionate, loving and accepting of all people.

But most of all, I love that you and I both love each other so much.

 

I promise to continue our dreams, goals and plans we made together.

I promise to always respect you and the unique talents and abilities you had.

I promise to be faithful to you, to trust you and to honour you.

I promise to cherish our friendship and continually do things that make you smile.

I promise to always keep laughing and having adventures you would want me to go on.

I promise to think of you in Heaven often.

I promise to love your whole family and keep them close.

I promise to love you with my actions, with my choices, with my words and with my time until we meet again one day.

 

You are my love, today and always.

I will love you with all my heart and with all my soul forever.

 

Click HERE to watch Chris’ Memorial Video put together by his brother! <3
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  • Maryann Daase - Wow. It’s just so hard to find my words, Marie. That was…JUST. SOOO. BEAUTIFUL! 💖 & Inspiring. & Heartbreaking yet heartwarming all together. What an amazing tribute to your hubby, & the precious relationship you two shared! 💞

    Just as you expressed how blessed you were to have known Chris, so I believe all who know you will be truly blessed as well. Chris was, & you are, rare gifts to this world. Keep shining the light that is YOU. Our world so needs it! 💖 You are truly a gifted photographer, & I’m SO happy to hear you have every intention to continue sharing this amazing gift as well!

    May you find yourself truly enveloped by the love God has for you…encompassed by His peace, strengthened by His presense, guided by His spirit. & infilled with His hope. May you ever be aware of just how precious you truly are. 💖

    I hope our paths cross again, & I wish you all the best in your years ahead!

    With love & prayers,
    Maryann Daase 💖ReplyCancel

Sweet Stephanie and Daniel won my Valentine’s Day Giveaway contest 2 years ago (stay tuned, I am announcing it again for this year tomorrow!). They decided to wait a little while to redeem their free portrait session until they were expecting their first child. So, when I received the email that Stephanie was pregnant I got excited! I photographed their Vancouver maternity session this past summer at Jericho Beach. It was such a perfect, sunny day and what an amazing session it ended up being. Seriously gorgeous. I am so happy to share these photos with you! Enjoy!

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I loved their outfits and all the little props that Stephanie and Daniel brought to the session. I posted a few of their photos on my Faccebook page back in August and people wanted to know where Stephanie’s dress was from, it’s from: Love it Again Clothing & Accessories. It’s such a pretty dress!

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She’s so beautiful.

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SO gorgeous right!? I absolutely loved this Vancouver maternity session and if you can believe it this was a free session! So, be sure to enter my Valentine’s Day Giveaway contest tomorrow and the days before Valentine’s Day so you can win a free session too! Stay tuned for the announcement! <3

Lots of love, Marie

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Hi all you beautiful people!

It is February!! You know what that means?! It’s time for the VALENTINE’S DAY GIVEAWAY!! This is the one time a year I give away a FREE portrait session.  :):):)

Like I did last year I want to focus on not only the couples in love, but also the love shared between your family, friends, pets, etc. In short, if you don’t have a significant other you can still enter this giveaway! The winner will receive a FREE portrait session by me!

At the bottom of this post you will find a box with ways to enter the giveaway. Each type of entry has a number value. You can tweet about the contest, share it on Facebook or share it on Instagram once a day and get multiple entries from that! Remember to use the hashtag: #marieskerlvday2016 and tag @marieskerlphoto when you are posting.

There is also a new form of entry this year which is “Do a Good Deed.” Why not spread some love this February? Do something nice for someone else, send me a photo of it and enter the giveaway that way! Do this everyday for the most possible entry points.

The more entries you make, the more likely you are to win. The winner of the contest will be picked randomly using Rafflecopter on February 15. Entries will end at midnight on February 14th.

Good luck! Now start entering! 😀

Lots of love, Marie

Valentine

Every good blog post needs photos and it seemed only right to post some photos from the wonderful Jenny & Sheldon’s engagement session, as we met through this contest last year!

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ENTER HERE:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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  • Emilie - I am loving turtle neck sweaters right now!ReplyCancel

  • Amanda Siebert - You rule Marie! Your work just keeps getting more amazing. <3ReplyCancel

  • Cally Petersen - Always inspired by you lovely! <3ReplyCancel

  • Lindsay Penner - I am loving wedding planning! Such a fun time!ReplyCancel

  • Jasmina - Met you at the Evoy wedding. You are amazing and stunning! Love your feed! Pics are beautiful!ReplyCancel

  • Angela R. - I’m loving being a high school teacher and building relationships with my students at the start of a new semester!ReplyCancel

  • Taylor Ann - I’m loving being in my last semester at school & planning the day I get to marry my partner in crime!ReplyCancel

  • Mary F. - I am loving making corn flour tortillas from scratch with my husband! #omnomnomnomReplyCancel

  • Brooke - I love a cup of perfectly brewed coffee and the sound of wind whistlingReplyCancel

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  • Kaitlyn - Beautiful engagement session!ReplyCancel

  • Bonnie - I’m currently loving grapefruits! With it being winter, and having the strawberries, cherries, watermelons, and mangoes not being in season, these grapefruits are really hitting the spot!ReplyCancel

  • Jackie - I’m all about tea, books and my niece and nephew right now!!!💜ReplyCancel

  • Anaheit - Currently loving that it’s 13 degrees in February and helping plan my best friends wedding 😊ReplyCancel

  • Bethany would - Would love a photo shoot with you! I love your work and I really just want some good photos of me and my boyfriend ! Hope I get the chance to work with you !:)ReplyCancel

  • Bethany - Your an amazing photographer and would love the chance to work with you in creating some special photos of my boyfriend and I ! I truly hope I get the chance to do soReplyCancel

  • Alana - I’ve been loving the book the girl on the train, and finishing my last seamster of university. Looking forward to graduating and spending the summer with family and friendsReplyCancel

  • Jennifer Best - I’m feeling blessed by my animals! I love each of them and they’re a lot of fun!ReplyCancel

  • Victoria Ho-Garcia - lately I have really gotten into baking and love that I can share it with friends and families ☺️ReplyCancel

  • Ashley - Beautiful as always, your work is always an inspiration! xoReplyCancel

  • Zoe Mandell - At the moment I’m loving the TV show Once Upon a time! Its slightly addictive, but makes for wonderful evenings watching it with my family (who I also love lots). :)ReplyCancel

  • Anna Hoang - I love your work!! <3ReplyCancel

  • Brittany Walker - Yes please!!!ReplyCancel

  • Adrian F - I am loving doing life with my wife and figuring wht the future has for us, even when its super nervewracking.ReplyCancel

  • Beth - I’m loving all the time I get with my family! Would love a portrait session to capture the love!ReplyCancel

  • Samantha Sexton - I am currently loving my heated blanket. It is my new best friend.ReplyCancel