Portrait Perfect

Over the weekend I attended an event at Fanshawe College put on by Henry’s School of Imaging called Portrait Perfect. My friend Ren invited me down, so I brought my friend and neighbour Cam down to London for the day.

Included in the day-long talk were five different sessions covering lighting, the art and business of fashion photography, searching for inspiration, and designing an image from start to finish, including post processing. The lighting session was done by Jim Ogilvie, a fashion and beauty photographer out of Toronto. The remaining sessions were covered by the keynote speaker, New York City-based portrait and fashion photographer Lindsay Adler.

I have a small light kit at home that I don’t use much, so all the talking on lighting from both speakers has made me want to get myself much more comfortable with it. Lindsay spoke about how much she can stretch a budget on her shoots and still get some pretty fantastic results. She puts a crazy amount of effort into her work—including scouting locations, bartering, feeding people, and, of course, photographing models—and it shows. Her imagery is nothing like I’ve seen before and made me appreciate fashion photography far more than I had before. Once you see my work you’ll immediately realize that I have zero fashion shots, but Lindsay’s words and advice can be applied for many different styles and types of creative work.

Both Lindsay and Jim shot tethered to a laptop during their presentations so we could see what they were doing instantly. I was more than impressed to see their shots right out of the camera. I was even more impressed when Lindsay did some post-processing work right in front of us. It was basically magic.

The whole day was equal parts informative and inspiring.

Snow day!

If you live in Southern Ontario, there’s a good chance you had a snow day on Monday. We got up pretty early to start shovelling which ended up taking over two hours to clear everything out. We now have a pile of snow taller than me in our backyard. After I got home from work I took a quick walk through the neighbourhood to grab a few photos of the aftermath. My fingertips became numb more than once, so it was nice to have a quick pit stop at City Hall to warm up.

12th Annual Fire and Ice Gala

Friday night was Leadership Waterloo Region’s 12th annual Fire and Ice Gala. I’ve been one of the featured artists for the past four years so it was a pleasure to be back again. Along with myself, my friends Jennifer Gough, Amy Ferrari, Michele Braniff and new-comers Kaitrin Beechey and Jack Jackowetz had some of their work available in the event’s silent auction. Normally the artists are all seated together at the dinner, but this year we were kind of spread out all over the place. I was at a table full of graduates of the 2004 class. It was nice to see how they all had kept in touch over the years. I sat next to former Waterloo mayor Brenda Halloran so it was nice to chat with her and her husband Fred for a bit. She even gave me her dessert after our entree.

The event was once again held at Bingeman’s in Kitchener. The auction basically ran from the time you arrived until about 10:45. There were three sections with available items, each closing at fifteen minute intervals later in the night. My two photographs were on the first table to close, but I was very lucky to have both of mine bid on before dinner even began. The artists set the starting bid for their pieces; once those prices were met, the piece was officially sold. Any extra amount bid above that set price went to LWR. My Seagram image actually got into a bit of a bidding war which was nice. It made me feel all warm and fuzzy inside, and it was able to earn just a bit more money for the program.

Photograph in a bidding war and extra dessert: pretty good night.

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