Hi There Everyone, Professional Photographer and owner of Flirt and Flutter Photography) Raven Ouellette here, and while I try to keep the blog upbeat I couldn’t help but comment on the tragic local photography tragedy that happened just around the corner from Ottawa: in Dorwin Falls in Rawdon, about an hour north of Montréal. Montréal Photographer Louis Pagakis was providing young and beautiful new bride Maria Pantazopoulos with a newer but incredibly popular “Trash the Dress” Post- Wedding Photography Photo Shoot when the water soaking her dress began creating so much weight she was dragged under the water, so quickly and heavily that Louis Pagakis  could not save her. My heart goes out to the families of everyone involved. I am deeply saddened to see what should have been an additional exciting and happy day on top of a woman’s most special day turned into a senseless death.

Trash the Dress (apparently also known as “Rock the Frock”) , for those of you who don’t know, is meant to be playful spin on the traditional wedding photos involving brides and grooms simply standing together. It is an opportunity for a bride to wear her dress for a second time, now with the focus 100% on her, and where she is able to have fun without worrying about ruining her dress…because that is exactly the point. Wedding Dresses are incredibly expensive and while it is a beautiful and touching gesture to offer your dress to your daughter or daughter in law, likely she will want her own special dress made exclusively for or chosen by her. SO why allow your dress to sit in a box on a shelf for years when you canimmoratlize your dress, expressing your personality and having some post-wedding stress relief?

The most common shot you will see in “Trash the Dress” Photo Shoots are the brides playing in or floating on water. But here is the easiest way to avoid dangerous locations or situations: BE CREATIVE when it comes to Trash the Dress photo shoots! They don’t necessarily need to involve floating in or playing in water at all! Mess around in the mud and sand, climb some trees, buy some 80s day glow neon paint, go to a farm/amusement park/junk yard, have a food fight, run around in the rain, tear it apart with scissors, contact the local graffiti artists, heck here is your chance for the bride drink a glass or two of red wine in her dress…while someone else pours it all over her!

For a quick video (sorry for the low quality of sound, and lack of styling of yours truly…I found it more prudent to get this out quickly):


If you would like to download and print off a more complete list of health and safety tips for photographers, models and clients here is the pdf:


Please feel free to comment with your suggestions on how to increase the Health, Safety and Security during outdoor photo shoots!

About the author

  • Ottawa Photographer Liubov Boudoir

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.


You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>