November 10, 2013
On my way up to photograph the Canadian Museum for Human Rights from the balcony at the new Prairie 360 revolving restaurant in Winnipeg, I noticed the shrivelled leaves of vines hanging from the limestone off the first floor of the building. Just a few weeks ago, the leaves would have been alive with saturated color. Now, the color had mostly disappeared and the leaves had shrivelled and dried. I have always been attracted to this sort of muted color which tends to dominate in the seasons 'between fall and winter' and again 'between winter and spring'. I enhanced the nostalic look by bringing the image into an App called 'Vintage Scene' in which I overlayed a subtle texture and frame. The scene reminded me of my very first print exhibition called 'Subtle Images' which hung in Edmonton in the early 1980s.
November 10, 2013
Two weeks ago I led a photo workshop in Kenora for the 'Word On The Water' Book Festival. We had wonderful participation from folks across Northwestern Ontario as well as from Winnipeg. Things started 'in the dark' literally with Ontario Hydro shutting down power in much of the city at 6:30 AM which made meeting the participants an interesting event in the lobby of the inn.
Arriving at our destination at Rushing River, heavy cloud covered much of the sky but held some promise for dappled light later in the morning. Rushing River provided plenty of inspiration eventhough the leaves had mostly fallen off the trees. This simply forced us to 'look' more attentively and begin to 'see' shapes, lines, form, texture and color rather than subject matter itself. For one participant however, it meant thinking more in terms of B&W as this was his medium of choice.
Back indoors around mid-morning, we downloaded the morning's images and began to edit and process the images following some instruction. I demonstrated my workflow as well as how I process my images using a few different examples. I also demonstrated how different software tools can assist in bringing about one's creative vision. An image critique at the end of the day gave us all a chance to see what the various participants created that morning. It is always interesting to see how differently each one of us can interpret a particular scene. I critiqued the images by offering ways for improvement, always trying to keep in mind what the photographer is trying to communicate. I feel it is also important to invite comments from the other participants so that this becomes an inclusive dialogue rather than a lecture.
While I heard from most of the participants that the day had been very succesful, I would like to add that workshop leaders often benefit from these events too. As is often the case, I was quite pleased to see a number of fine images presented. What inspired me perhaps the most from this workshop was seeing how a few individuals focused on Black and White photography. I have always had a soft spot for B&W and I really enjoyed darkroom work, particularly during my formative years. When I changed career paths to working as a full-time freelance professional photographer many years ago, B&W took a 'back seat' as it was seldom in demand for commercial work. However, my interest in B&W remained and this workhop simply re-ignited my love for B&W. Thank you participants for this inspiration!
Below are a few images that I have processed since the workshop. Be sure to CLICK on the main image in order to see the other images.
October 24, 2013
The 'Word On The Water' Book Festival' is finally here! Drop in Kenora, Ontario for a weekend of presentations, readings, workshops and exhibitions by many well known Canadian authors. And you can now start reading book reviews of some of the authors' works. Come meet and mingle with the authors. How cool is that!
On Saturday morning, I look forward to presenting 'Stories Behind The Lens' as well as being a panelist on 'Professionalism 101' with authors Duncan Weller and Charles Wilkins in the afternoon.
On Sunday, I will lead a full-day photo workshop 'Viewfinder To Print' in Kenora.
But to start it all off, I will be at Tangled Tree Framing and Gifts to meet with folks and chat about 'Natural Reflections', my latest photography exhibition, showing from October 11 to November 9, 2013. I will be on hand from 1 - 3 PM Friday.
I'm looking forward to meeting many of you in Kenora this weekend!
October 16, 2013
I will be attending 'Scattered Seeds' again this year. This is the annual Chrismas Craft Show & Sale that happens at the Red River Exhibition Hall in Winnipeg, Manitoba from October 18 - 20, 2013. This is an excellent opportunity to get your Christmas shopping done early!
I will be on hand to sign copies of my latest book 'Prairie and Beyond'. You can find me at my publisher's booth - Turnstone Press.
I will be around during the following times:
Friday, October 18 from 10 AM to 2 PM
Saturday, October 19 from 10 AM to 1 PM
Sunday, October 20 from Noon to 1 PM
The book 'Prairie and Beyond' was honoured on a few occasions this year. First it received a 2012 PIA Certificate of Merit in the category 'Art Books' in the 2012 Premier Print Award Competition. Later, it was nominated for two 2013 Manitoba Book Awards: Best Illustrated Book of the Year and the Mary Scorer Award for Best Book by a Manitoba Publisher.
The book was also the inspiration for a traveling print exhibition called 'Prairie and Beyond'. Two exhibitions of large-scale photographic prints (12 and 26 prints each) are traveling throughout Manitoba communities from September 2012 to December 2014. The exhibition was produced by The Manitoba Arts Network.
October 16, 2013
Last Friday, I opened 'Natural Reflections', an exhibition of 15 fine art prints at Tangled Tree Framing & Gifts in Kenora. I really enjoyed chatting with folks about the works and my experiences making those images. It was particularly enchanting to chat with a very young girl about 'abstract art'. It's always encouraging to meet kids that are interested in art! The show will run from October 11 to November 9.
Next Friday, October 25, I will be in town again for a mid-show opening to coincide with 'Word On The Water' Book Festival from Oct. 25-27. I will be presenting on two seperate occasions on Saturday as well as leading a one-day photo workshop on Sunday.