Toronto portrait photography studio | Beautiful Reese and her story / by Elena Golijanin

Every now and then, my work provides me with the opportunity to meet extraordinary human beings. These individuals leave a mark on my heart and remind me of why I chose to be a portrait photographer.  Today was one of those days.  I feel blessed to have met a beautiful and remarkable woman named Reese and to have had the opportunity to capture her beauty and grace through my lens.

While on vacation, Reese contracted a disease that left her a double (nearly a quadruple) amputee. While this may have crushed most people’s souls, the experience seems to have only made Reese stronger. 

Reese didn’t need much work to make her shine through the camera. Her bright spirit and vibrant personality lit up the room with joy, humour, and passion. Reese wanted an elegant, graceful look for her portraits, but she also wanted the images to display her strength and confidence. 

Here is what Reese had to say about her story and what this portrait photography session meant to her:

“In the fall of 2016 I underwent surgery to amputate both my legs below the knees and in the winter of 2017, the upper digits of the fingers of both my hands. Both were due to septic shock. The experience of being hospitalized for several months and losing my limbs was terribly challenging.

However, with the continuous support and love of my friends and my faith in my purpose, I was able to regain my abilities and confidence again. I was able to continue to focus on the “bigger picture”, rely on the power of self love and take care of my soul. I learned that my body was only a fraction of who I was and beauty is not just seen but felt.

When I look at the photos and think back on my experience with Elena, the words that come to mind are gratitude and hope. I am incredibly grateful to have had experienced such a wonderful photo session with a photographer that wanted me to feel special and empowered. I was incredibly hopeful that there were people out there that were able to truly see what is often invisible - someone’s spirit. When I look at these photos that’s what I see. My spirit feeling empowered enough to face anything head on with confidence and love.”

Please enjoy our selection from Reese’s photo shoot!