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Today was a very special day for us. Teddy and I, witnessed the unveiling of the painting we had our beautiful, talented friend Melissa Townsend (Hiltz) paint for us.

It was beyond worth the wait… and I am so lucky that she allowed me to photography the unveiling, and her beautiful self on my new Oliphant backdrop.

When we saw this amazing piece of art we were both speechless, I thought to myself “wow, we are all grown up”.  The scene took us back 5 years ago to our honeymoon in Positano, Italy; this vivid painting is so 3-dimensional that it makes you feel you are there, and we cannot wait to return this September with Vatican in tow to tour around as a family, and revisit all of the amazing streets, restaurants and people.

This was a labour of love for Melissa, she told us that over the course of this adventure, she thought about painting over the whole thing 3 times and redoing it, but we are so glad that she didn’t and LOVE it just the way it is.

Being an artist can be very rewarding, empowering and enlightening, but it can also be very confining because you have so much that you just want to release all at once, and sometimes nothing comes out.  Teddy and I are so very proud of Melissa and her work, and honoured that we now have a piece to call our own.  It compliments our new(ish) home so wonderfully, and brings a warm smile to our faces every time we walk into our front room.

Melissa is a loving mother, amazing wife, and very special to me; she is such a kind soul. I know how much of her heart she put into this breathtaking project; a lot of blood, sweat and tears, and it is because of this that I wanted to give her a little something to help her put things into perspective when it gets too heavy.

The GIVING KEYS bracelet, hers says BREATHE, because sometimes that is all you need to help collect your thoughts and push through the funk.

We love you Melissa, and will cherish and pass this lovely masterpiece on throughout our family for generations.  You gave us such a special gift, we will forever be grateful and are so thankful to have you as such a sweet, giving friend.

The hanging of the piece was a family affair, we all shared in the fun; little Vander kept William occupied so we could get everything perfect.

Our painting is home…Halifax-Wedding-Photographers-unveiling-49



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  1. Lea Bentlage Townsend

    April 19th, 2014 at 11:57 pm


  2. Weston Hiltz

    April 19th, 2014 at 11:59 pm

    it looks amazing on that wall! it looks like it’s home 🙂

    fun shoot 🙂 miss you guys. xo

  3. Ann Marie Sutherland

    April 20th, 2014 at 12:01 am

    absolutely beautiful

  4. Patti Van Ritchie

    April 20th, 2014 at 12:04 am

    Wow. Little more to say but that.

  5. Katherine Lapierre

    April 20th, 2014 at 12:25 am

    Beautiful! Just beautiful! I love it!

  6. Randy Gerber

    April 20th, 2014 at 1:01 am

    How amazingly wonderful.
    This is the most impressive capture of an unveiling, I have ever seen 🙂

  7. Josie Bentlage

    April 20th, 2014 at 1:52 am

    My beautiful niece…She amazes me <3 ...such talent!!

  8. Alisha Wild

    April 20th, 2014 at 4:47 am

    Melissa, your talent is mind blowing! I always get such a sense of love looking at your work. It’s not often that pieces move me, but yours seem to every time! xoxox

  9. Cathy Berry

    April 20th, 2014 at 5:09 am


  10. Lorne Piercey

    April 20th, 2014 at 7:28 am

    Beautiful Melissa. Distinctive style that I recognize. Such a wonderful talent.

  11. Lynda Macdonald

    April 20th, 2014 at 10:36 am

    Speachless. The painting, the unveiling, your family, friends, you – so wonderful. Thanks for sharing!

  12. Sonja Cummings

    April 20th, 2014 at 1:39 pm

    Stunning !!! Makes you feel like you are in Italy.

  13. Sarah Higgs Schlender

    April 20th, 2014 at 6:03 pm

    What a beautiful collaboration. Amazing Art perfectly captured on film, precious words and stunning people. Could there be any more talent and beauty in one place?

  14. Michelle Classen

    April 20th, 2014 at 10:17 pm

    Coolest EVER!!! I want one too.
    Had so much fun with Albert and Lea trekking in PD.

  15. Jennifer Davis Lalonde

    April 22nd, 2014 at 12:32 am

    What an amazing picture. She captured Positano beautifully. I must ad she is a amazingly beautiful woman as well. Those eyes.

  16. Mary Garoutte

    June 10th, 2014 at 11:44 am

    Thanks for sharing the beauty. It is an amazing painting and your photography is also beautiful. Very professional. Melissa is an amazing talent. I remember seeing the unfinished painting in her studio and seeing the different phases it went through…. Amazing to see it done & how it has come together.

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