• Welcome to the website of wedding photographer Saavedra Photography (formerly known as Shang Chen Photography) My mission is to empower people through photography to love themselves and confidently see the beauty that I see in them.

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Scotland part 1: The drive to Inverness

The majestic Scottish highlands along route A-82 unfolded before our eyes as we drove from Edinburgh to Inverness via a stop at Stirling castle and then getting on the windy, picturesque, magnificent A-82. Never mind that some of these scenes were featured in the James Bond film Skyfall (okay, so that was maybe a main reason why I chose this route), in Googling / Pinterest searching for this trip, I knew that a particular junction close to Glencoe would lend to some of the most spectacular photos on this trip. Want to know how you can find the exact spots? Sign up for my monthly newsletter where I will reveal my travel guide in this month’s mailing.

Where’s Waldo?


This was one of our best meals in Scotland! Want to know where it is? Sign up for my monthly newsletter

See other photos in this series:

Ireland, part 1: The Cities

Ireland, part 2: Natural beauty

Scotland part 1: The drive to Inverness

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Saavedra Photography on Facebook Instagram
Based in NYC | photographer of celebrations of love and life | champion of helping everyone see the beauty I see in them

Birthday weekend in Montreal

Taking a quick moment to blog about my trip this past weekend to Montreal. I had a great time in Montreal, in many ways, it felt like being in Paris – except food was better priced and I can get away with a lot more English if I wanted to.

Thank you to all my friends who provided great food suggestions! To explain why I don’t usually go to all the top foodie places… it’s due to our religious restrictions. Our diet isn’t strictly kosher, but we do avoid pork – which is hard in many top dishes around the world including French cuisine, shellfish, and we also stay away from food produced in inhumane manner – such as foie gras, and then, on top of that, neither of us actually like what is commonly considered Jewish food in the States (so, no Katz’s deli), so it took some extra research to find what we’d like to eat, but as always, we trended Middle East / Mediterranean. I was very happy to indulge on delicious halal kebabs,  fresh fruit and produce at the Marche Jean Talon, great cheese and bread from local places, and a lavish birthday dinner at Le Club Chasse et Peche which I would recommend in a heartbeat.

Our first hot meal in town was Chateau Kabab. Kababs were great!

We stayed at Le Meridien. Great rooms, great ambiance, great bed… not so great service (we gave front desk our feedback), I was surprised given it’s an SPG, but that might explain why it’s category 3

Well worth the 5$ CAD entrance fee, the Basilique Notre-Dame de Montreal (no relation to the Notre Dame in Paris) was an architectural delight

With my husband’s sweet tooth, we also hit up various pastries. The reason why there are photos of chocolate in this post is because of him – you never want to give me chocolate, as it goes straight to him as I don’t eat it ;)  Juliette et Chocolat is a chain where you can find delicious chocolates

Our highest compliments for a bakery, however, go to Mamie Clafoutis, where we went twice for pastries

Don’t let this bushy tailed squirrel fool you. Her and her conniving pack of compadres kept lunging at us while we tried to eat our Mamie Clafoutis pastries in a nearby park.

Everyone told me to go to St-Viateur Bagel… Umm… No. Sorry, nope nope, does not measure up at all to a piping hot Brooklyn bagel. Sorry

Then it was my birthday dinner! Thank you thank you to everyone who recommend Le Club Chasse et Peche. It was one of the best meals I’ve had this year

We started with the Wagyu beef two ways, and his entree was the veal

While mine was a delicate Alaskan king salmon

Growing up in Europe as a kid, I’ve always loved open air markets. They’re my jam. Marche Jean Talon – though pricey – did not disappoint. We went here twice as well

The crepe stand looked great, but was not worth it


I highly recommend La fromagerie Hamel at the marche to taste and grab some cheese
Shang’s quick guide to Montreal:

Transport

- Get the 3-day unlimited pass on the Metro system, good for subway (very frequent trains, usually every 6 minutes) and the bus – including the 747 bus that takes you to the airport. We did not cab or Uber even once in this town, which was great!

See:

The Montreal Museum of Fine Arts

Basilique Notre-Dame de Montreal

- Climb Mont Royal (or in my case, take bus 11 up, walk back down)

- Wander around downtown shopping district

Eat:

Chateau Kabab

Le Club Chasse et Peche

La fromagerie Hamel

Mamie Clafoutis

Marche Jean Talon

 

Want to see more travel photos? Be sure to check out my recent trip to Ireland

Sign up for my monthly newsletter to be notified of free shoots, have a chance at winning gift cards, drawings occur every month

Saavedra Photography on Facebook Instagram
Based in NYC | photographer of celebrations of love and life | champion of helping everyone see the beauty I see in them

Mahbuba, in(SP)ired | Celebrating her birthday

Mahbuba put it the best: Sometimes the best gifts are the ones you gift yourself. She wrote me before turning 23 that she wished to gift herself the gift of some beautifully done photographs for both personal and professional reasons. How cool is that? It sure doesn’t hurt when you look like Leighton Meester ;) I loved how much Mahbuba was into fashion. She creatively incorporated her hijab into her every day wear, however, I am only showing a select few shots here. Thank you Mahbuba! May each birthday you have be ever more fabulous!

Treat yourself. Come see what in(SP)iration sessions with me are all about

Sign up for my monthly newsletter to be notified of free shoots, have a chance at winning gift cards, drawings occur every month

Saavedra Photography on Facebook Instagram
Based in NYC | photographer of celebrations of love and life | champion of helping everyone see the beauty I see in them

Ireland, part 2: Natural beauty

For those who missed part 1, click here to see some photos from the Irish cities I visited. This second part is highly anticipated by many – the gorgeous scenes that I saw in Ireland. This blog posts is just the tip of the iceberg of all the incredible, beautiful, breathtaking sights I saw in Ireland. Everything was so green, so rich with history, and shrouded in some pretty cool mist and fog on certain days.

As I mentioned, I have written an extensive travel guide to Ireland and Scotland which includes my itinerary, hotel, food, and highlights. I will be sending out the guide along with two $5 gift card (Amazon, Starbucks, Target, your choice) winners* on July 31. Make sure you are on my email list to receive the travel guide and make sure to like posts on Facebook to qualify for the gift card drawing. Boston friends – I am coming to you in October for mini portrait sessions! Sign up on the bottom of this blog to get early access to them.

Driving along the Great Atlantic Way through the Burrent to make our way to Cliffs of Moher

The spectacular Cliffs of Moher. We were so lucky that the thick patch of fog dissipated after we ate a long lunch

Click on the image below to see the panorama in full size

Dingle Peninsula, which was probably the highlight of my trip to Ireland (click the image below to see full panorama)

Various sights on the Ring of Kerry

Newgrange passage tomb

Saavedra Photography on Facebook Instagram
Based in NYC | photographer of celebrations of love and life | champion of helping everyone see the beauty I see in them

Ireland, part 1: The Cities

It’s time for me to blog about my trip last month to Ireland and Scotland! This trip was a feast for the eyes, and I’m so excited to share it with you. I have also written an extensive travel guide to how to travel in Ireland and Scotland which includes my itinerary, hotel, food, and cost recommendations. I will be sending out the guide along with two $5 gift card (Amazon, Starbucks, Target, your choice) winners* on July 31. Make sure you are on my email list to receive the travel guide. Also, if you currently like me on Facebook, you would be one of the first to know about new blog posts and unique to Facebook announcements. Boston friends – I am coming to you in October for mini portrait sessions! Sign up on the bottom of this blog to get early access to them.

 

Galway: Quintessentially Irish, fun downtown area, great place to relax

This barbershop is all sorts of awesome

Killarney…. ah I could wax poetic about Killarney. Here’s the gorgeous house we stayed in

Cork – stop here for lunch, there is one market you absolutely have to go to


Dublin – we didn’t have a lot of time here… but we stayed in a castle!

Stay tuned – there are more blog posts to come.

* Winners of drawings must be both a member on the email list, and have “liked” posts on Saavedra Photography on Facebook. A winner is randomly drawn from all the likes accumulated over the month

Also – booking update! I am now getting daily, if not 2 – 3 inquiries per day, about my August – October openings. Inquire quickly to make sure you get some great fall photos in NYC this year.

Saavedra Photography on Facebook Instagram
Based in NYC | photographer of celebrations of love and life | champion of helping everyone see the beauty I see in them