"Where In Ottawa" is a blog series featuring the best locations to have for your wedding or engagement photo sessions. For each post of this series, we will pick a spot, outline some of the highlights and challenges using the location, and show some photos we have shot for inspiration!
Okay, so this is cheating a bit, as Pink Lake is actually on the Quebec side, but since it is such a great spot especially for engagement sessions it deserves a blog post! Despite its name, the lake is itself not pink at all, but rather green. It is named after the Pink family who had a farm close by back in the 1800s. Pink Lake is particularly unique because of its meromictic nature - meaning its upper and lower layers of water never mix! A hike around the lake, on its well-maintained stairs and pathways, can take sixty to ninety minutes depending on your fitness level or how many stops you make on its various lookouts. Regardless of where you are on the trail, you will always have foliage and trees on one side and its beautiful turquoise-colored water on the other. I have been there once in the fall, and the lake reflects the vibrant colors of the changing leaves which make for a gorgeous mirrored effect!
Accessibility is important to me as a photographer because not only does it make it easy for me to walk around with my gear and take photos but because I also tell my couples to dress up for their engagement session. Dressing-up can often mean wearing heels or dress shoes, both of which are not suitable for hiking. With Pink Lake's various entry points and moderate elevation, you can pretty much walk in and spend thirty minutes in there and still produce fantastic images. You do not have to walk the length of the lake to find a great spot for photos, and even if you do, it is not at all physically demanding. The trails and stairs are well-maintained. The last thing I would want is for my couples to be sweating profusely during the photo shoot, and Pink Lake's accessible trails will help prevent that from happening.
Green, green, green!
Pink Lake is any nature lover's dream spot. At SheenPhotos, we have been leaning towards incorporating more of nature into our work, as Michael and I consider ourselves to outdoorsy people. In our photos, we love deep greens and the shadows cast by the thick layer of trees. We love the peeking of the sunlight and the diffused illumination it produces. All of these types of effects we can get from Pink Lake! We, of course, enjoy working with clients who love being in nature as much as we do and Pink Lake can help showcase this! So, if you and your significant other want your love of nature, the outdoors, or your sense of adventure to be reflected in your photos, Pink Lake can help you achieve that!
We love to chase light - this is an essential element of photography. Pink Lake, with its dense trees and reflective water surface, allow for many ways to utilize natural light to create beautiful engagement photos. For the photos you will see on this blog, I made the mistake of bringing Linda and Albert there on such late hour. We were there at around 7:30 pm, usually perfect time for an engagement session, just before the sun sets. However, because of Pink Lake's lush forest surroundings, it made it look like nighttime. You can go to Pink Lake any time of the day and get the same effect of having soft, flattering lighting.
Because of the lush forest surrounding the lake, coupled with the inability sunlight to penetrate it, bugs, and mosquitoes specifically, are aplenty! Mosquitoes are not unique to Pink Lake, but it is something that you and your photographer should plan for! Bring bug spray, if you do not want to be eaten alive, and reapply accordingly. If mosquitoes are swarming you, it will not be fun, and if you are not having fun, it will show in your photos.
If you are going for photos that show you on a mountain top or the side of a cliff, Pink Lake will not give you these types of images. I had initially thought that Pink Lake would provide me with some elevation, where I can take photos of Linda and Albert from high up, similar to what you would get if you were in the hills of Wakefield, for example, where you will wide open sky. With Pink Lake, getting to higher elevation is made difficult by the steep inclines and obscured by the abundance of trees!
No pets allowed.
Due to Pink Lake's unique meromictic nature, the province has gone to great length to rehabilitate and preserve the site. Maintenance includes planting 10,000 small trees, for instance, to prevent erosion. Sadly, preservation requires that hikers not bring pets, specifically dogs, to the trail. If you would like to include your loyal canine in your engagement photos, you will have to go somewhere else.