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Friday, February 6, 2015

Faces, Fashion & Figures course @ Camosun College,Lansdowne Campus, Victoria

I am again presenting my course on lighting and directing photography subjects, presented by Camosun's Continuing Education , Mar 23 - May 11, over 7 sessions .
The response to the previous offerings has encouraged the college to present it again.
If you're interested you can register online at or call 250.370.3550

The goals of this class are two-fold. First I will work the class to get a more solid understanding of how they can each use their own portable flashes (Speedlights) in a variety of settings and situations. My experience has made it clear that even experienced working photographers have often not made effective effort to learn to use their own portable flashes. And it is usually much simpler than you can imagine. Which then allows the photographer to shoot in unlimited locations and in various light conditions.

The second objective of this class is to encourage the students to gain confidence & comfort communicating with their subjects. Whether shooting a wedding for a relative or a portrait for a business associate, the subject needs the photographer to tell them what to do, where to look, how they look. To encourage them, give them confidence.

 That's hard to do when the photographer still feels a need to build his/her own confidence. My models & I will be encouraging, assisting, suggesting and teasing the students to connect with the person(s) on the other side of the camera.

Food & Beverage Workshop @ Camosun College, Sat., April 11/15

I'm offering another one day workshop on Food & Beverage Photography at Camosun College, Lansdowne Campus in Victoria, B.C., Saturday, April 11.
 To register go online at or call 250.370.3550
This course seems to not be just for people with special interests in either food or photography, but clearly those interests help. I thought my previous class might fill up with the kind of people we all see taking photographs of the lunch with their phones. But that was certainly not the limit of the type of foodie/photographer that came to the workshop.
Food is pretty much a universal interest........understatement.......but it can definitely be the catalyst of many other interests and enjoyments. And photography now seems to be a likely addition.
This is pretty much a fun class where everyone can come away with some skills to add to their everyday routines. Participants don't need to be accomplished photographers or chefs. It helps if they have a reasonable understanding of how their camera works. But the tools can be pretty basic.

Studio Lighting Workshop for the Victoria Camera Club, March 15 & 22/15

  I am working with the Victoria Camera Club to demonstrate lighting techniques in the studio using models, both figurative and possibly, sorta fashion.        

      The Victoria Camera Club is an exceptionally active and progressive group.    They have strong and effective educational programs for members, presented by members in a broad range of subjects and interests.Their weekly casual & social 'walk-about' explorations on the street, along with an exploration of a different local eatery, cultivate the social aspect of the club.                  Their monthly competitions encourage members to challenge themselves technically and creatively and strive for broader skills. They also have an annual international competition with a club from Eastwood, Scotland that provides a useful challenge and comparative perspective.

Explosions of Colour

A local woman is establishing an import business for exceptional and exotic flowers & blossoms and contracted me to create some images for her web site & BLOG to promote the new venture. I arrived at her location to find virtual mountains of flowers in a riot of colours. Her space was jammed with huge collections in rich, saturated colours that only nature produces the best.

The delicate blossoms & petals offer the challenge to use light to define the textures and colours and illustrate the drama of their structures.

A few were white or seemingly translucent so the delicate textures become the prominent feature.

My goal was to be able to illustrate the beauty and fragile structure that was unique to each different type of blossom, but to also include the drama and impact of a larger grouping of the same flower.

Colour like this, in these quantities, just smacks you in the face. Some were so saturated they almost seemed 'tasty' and edible. 

Throughout my career I have been hugely influenced by the work of Master photographer Irving Penn. He has been a major interest in my learning and appreciation of the use of light in images. I truly feel that most photographers that light their subjects and design and control the use of light in their photographs have been influenced by Penn, whether they're aware of it, or not.

Friday, January 24, 2014

Faces, Fashion & Figures

I have introduced a new continuing education class at Camosun College in Victoria starting Mar 5, with the same name as the title of this BLOG posting......"Faces, Fashion & Figures".

The subject will be just what that says, with an emphasis on creative approaches to lighting with the student participant's own off-camera flash.
I've done several presentations on using external flash because my experience tells me that most up-and-coming photographers, and advanced amateurs, are more intimidated by their flash than their cameras. And my experience and history with clients is as a creative and innovative lighting photographer, so I'm interested in assisting others to get a good grasp of using their own lighting tools.

The subject is the draw to keep the technical challenges interesting and applicable outside the classroom. We'll work with models for beauty shots, portraits, some fashion-type approaches and then use the figure to create some artsy-fartsy studies of light and form.

Higher, Faster, Further...............

Over the last few months I have been working with a dynamic young woman who is making her mark in the Canadian track circuit. Jordyn Piercy is a high school student in Victoria, B.C. with long legs and big drive.

Her specialty is running hurdles and she is being noticed as the current B.C. champion in 400 meter hurdles.
Jordyn is committed to the training and routine to keep her at the front of the pack on the track.
She has recently been awarded a scholarship to study and train at Trinity Western University where she'll be working hard to compete in 60 meter hurdles, and relays in 4 X 200m, 100m, 400m, 400m hurdles.

Friday, August 16, 2013

Mexican character

On a recent trip to the Yucatan in Mexico I spend a good deal of time enjoying the flavours of the street, as well as the flavours of Yucatecan food.

The Mexican people are warm and wonderful and it's an exciting experience to be immersed in a foreign culture, with routines and language and all the sensory teases that a vibrant community creates.

Mexico has been getting a pretty bad reputation lately, with the drug cartels scaring off travellers and people who don't really have any idea what's really going on. It is extremely unlikely that a visitor to Mexico will experience any kind of violence or problem.