Church: Michael’s church
Wedding dress: Sydänkäpy
Hair: Emma Paakki
Makeup: Anniina Ääri
Flowers: Flowershop Pasadena
Wedding venue: Wanha Talli
Church: Church of Littoinen
Wedding dress: Fiancee
Hair: Riina Vaparanta
Make-up: Bride herself
Groom suit: Manschett
Flowers: Flowershop Katariina
”Jori and I met in a cruising ship where we celebrated our common friends birthday. We hadn’t met before. I noticed Jori’s eyes: they where a mixture of green and blue but looked like ice. We spent the evening together but it didn’t lead to nowhere. We saw each other on the following week. I had arranged a home party just to see him again. Even the other people at the party noticed we had something going on. After the home party we kept sending messages and I tried to give him hints on asking me out. It lead to nowhere to I thought he might not be interested. Soon he pulled himself together and asked me out for a coffee. After that we kept seeing each other now and then. Our friends thought we where dating so on the new years eve 2014 we started our relationship together. I fell in love with him on how good hearted man he is and how he makes me feel happy and safe with him.”- Hannamari the bride.
”We met at jazz festival in Pori, where we both had been working. Reijo passed me on staircase and all I could say to my friend was: ’Damn, that was the man of my life and I didn’t even say hi!’ Luckily Reijo came back noticing me and started talking. We still tend to argue on witch one noticed each other first.
We’ve been together for sixteen years. Our children do know we are each others best friends. Nowadays we do end each others sentences, buy exactly same food from the shops- at the same time! We even attend to plan surprises for each other and having the same ideas. I believe that in the next year we don’t need to communicate at all, haha!” -Anna
”Alex and I met through a mutual friend while I was in the university. They had grown up together and she and I worked together while we where in school. Alex was in the military and used to come and hang out with us on the weekends to get away from the base. I remember thinking he was really cool and was funny and sweet. We where friends about a year before we started dating. I don’t remember the exact moment when I decided there was something more, but I remember thinking that I had better be sure if I wanted to start dating him, because I knew it was forever.” -Kirstie the bride
”I thought Kirstie was beautiful the very first time I saw her. She seemed smart and exciting. She has always had a very outgoing and bubbly personality. She has a way of making people around her smile. I had a crush on her right away. I have always been pretty shy, so I didn’t act on my feelings for a long time, but I think I liked her from the very beginning.” -Alex the groom.
”Alex has always been thoughtful and so smart. He was (and is) also just hilarious and easy and fun to be around. If I could bottle up what we have right now and keep it forever, that would be my wish. Life with Alex is easy in the best way. He accepts me for all that I am, doesn’t judge, is quick to forgive my grumpy moments and we don’t really fight. As we grow old, I want to be just one unit, that knows each others silent messages and loves unconditionally.” -Kirstie
” I knew that I wanted to spent the rest of my life with Kirstie when I was posted across the country and Kirstie told me that she would come with me. We had been dating for about a year at that point and were only able to see each other on the weekends for that year due to her school and my work. The fact that she was willing to pack up everything and move with me told me that she was committed to the relationship and would do anything to be together.” -Alex.
”Toni and I met first time in 2010 in the nightlife during Christmas. I was out with my friend and she kept talking to men that I didn’t know. The pub was full so that there wasn’t any seats so I wanted to move on. I was just moving on when one of the boys told me I could sit on the lap of the ”hammer.” I was amused and sat on the lap of a happy looking guy. I lost my into the moment. We got to know each other, specially talking about Aki Kaurismäki’s movies. I remember how excited I was of the chemistry we shared and I was impressed on his knowledge of movies. Back then I was studying movies in Stockholm, Sweden.
It took over six months from our first meeting that we contacted each other. He had been on my mind but I hadn’t reached out since I was living in different country. It seemed that Toni hadn’t got me out of his mind either. So he made the first romantic suggestion – he poked me on Facebook. We started on chatting threw nights and from those moments I knew I had a crush on him.” – Laura the bride
”When I met Laura, I remember thinking about how can it be possible to find from a small place like Huittinen a woman who speaks hours and hours movies by Aki Kaurismäki. Talking with her was really comfortable. I remember that when our night ended the separation started to bother me. Since our first meeting I kept talking about it to my friends and thought about her. Even it took half a year I decided to make the move. We we’re on our way to a music festival and on the long car ride I started to talk about her again. I decided to poke her profile on Facebook. That’s how we starting chatting for hours and hours. Those where the times when I noticed I had a crush on her.
From the start Laura and I have shared the same humour and we kept laughing for hours. We also share special connection for each other. She’s really thoughtful and a kind person. Laura is also the sound of common sense when I might easily get impulsive in getting into things.” -Toni the groom
”From the start I was impressed on Toni’s passion in movies and music. When I got to know him more, I realised how genuine and caring he is. He’s confident and at the same polite. He makes me laugh a lot and we share fun moments together. From our future I expect lots of laughing, happy moments and getting our wishes to come true -getting married was first of them. I also wish that we will face the troubles together as we have before.” -Laura
”While Laura’s first visit to my home we had already been chatting for a while. We spent an amazing weekend together and when I drove her to the harbour so she could go back to Sweden, I knew I wanted to be with her forever.” – Toni
Wedding dress: Morsiusgalleria
Brides hair: Kampaamo Aava
Makeup: Sarianna Sormunen
Grooms suit: Eklund
Church: Cathedral of Turku
When I was just a child, I never thought of option on being an entrepreneur. Or even work in such creative job. One of my earliest memories of what I wanted to be as an adult was to become a policewoman. But that was quickly crushed since I’m a short person.
I found my interest towards photography when I was around 18 years old. Before that I had done my studies and I wanted to work on child welfare. But that didn’t happen ever. I wasn’t one of the lucky ones who got their study place for the field. I had to start thinking what else to do with my life. I had started photographing as a hobby and without having clear future plans, I started on searching how could I study photography. The only place I got to go for an interview was to do one year photography studies in folk high school. I still haven’t a clue what my teacher saw in my photos back then, but I am forever grateful for her on accepting me to do the studies. My hobby turned to my passion. My passion turned into my career.
After one year photography studies, I moved into much smaller town called Kokkola. There I started my studies as an media-assistant on producing videos and organise them. Even I studied something else I didn’t stop photographing. I kept photographing and had my first clients as a freelancer. Before making Turku my home I lived short while working in London as a personal assistant and photographer.
I graduated in 2014 from my studies. And there it was. Emptiness on what to do after my studies. During my photography gigs I tried to find permitted job. Well, you might guess that permitted job as photographer isn’t that easy to find. One day I was reaching courses from the job services and found out there would begin a three months course on entrepreneurship. The word didn’t disappear from my mind. From my school I had already been in a small course of entrepreneurship but the speaker hadn’t bring out any good choices on being an entrepreneur. Only the bad things. And still I found myself sitting in a three months course learning how it all works.
And quite soon, McWhirter photography was official. From three years of working as a freelancer I became a full time entrepreneur. Many people have said I just showed up from nowhere. I didn’t. Everyone running a business knows how much work it needs to make things happen. And to make a living out of it. Has there been bad days? Yes, there has been. Everyone has ones. But the key is to keep on and do it. This year I have been photographing seven years and my company will be three years. I wouldn’t change it to anything.
Pictures by Mikko Pääkkönen