Thursday, May 26, 2011

A Portrait of Gary Mar

As a photographer, you never know when a photo opportunity will land in your lap. But when they do, you have to make the best of it. That's what happened recently when I was given the opportunity to photograph Gary Mar on location at his campaign headquarters in Calgary, Alberta.

Gary, who is a prime candidate for leader of the Progressive Conservative party in Alberta, was busy being  being filmed for his periodical video blog when I arrived. After watching three or four takes, they took a short break. With time being a major factor (I had 5-10 minutes) I positioned Mr. Mar near a large window and using a 50mm F/1.2 lens, I took a few close-up portraits. By opening the lens to a wide aperture I was able to limit the depth of field, thereby burring out the background. Believe it or not, there was actually a TV monitor hanging from the wall in the background. By getting in close, I was able to hide it behind the subject's head!

I was very grateful to meet Mr. Mar and he seems like a really nice guy and down to earth. He has an excellent team around him and with any luck, he will win the election.

Friday, May 06, 2011

Larger Than Life

Jamie Tilston and Costas Costoulas are Calgary's best kept secret in large-scale fine art printing. Together, the pair has been quietly building a loyal following offering a wide variety of printing solutions through their company Resolve Photo.

I recently visited the Resolve Photo studio, which is situated in a quiet corner of Killarney just off 29th Street SW. Although their shop is limited by size, they've managed to pack a great deal of technology into a small space. Printers and equipment are packed into every corner like a jigsaw puzzle. Fine art prints adorn the walls on all sides and offer up a view into the company's wide array of print finishes and mediums.

During my visit, Jamie showed me a few impressive black and white archival prints mounted on foam board. He explained the printing process, highlighting how the various papers effect tonality and the subtle differences in dynamic range. I was especially impressed by the canvas prints and the resin coated art work.

More and professional photographers have been using Resolve Photo to bring their work to life in a big way. The sky is the limit and when standing in front of a huge print, it's easy to see the appeal. There's just something about art made large. It's immersive and ponderous, often inviting a sense of awe.

If you're interested to learn more about Resolve Photo, be sure to check out their website, or give them a call at: 403.457.5527.

Monday, May 02, 2011

JPG Magazine

I've always been a big fan of Flickr. I feel it's still the best site for sharing photos and ideas about photography via their extensive forums. The sheer number of users is great too, as it's relatively easy to acquire much-needed feedback on your work.

Although I earn money taking photos as a professional in Calgary, photography is also my passion and I do a great deal of experimental work and street photography. Obviously this work doesn't appeal to everybody and certainly could confuse commercial clients. My Flickr stream is a melting pot of photographic styles and genres. Enter JPG.

Fotographix has been on JPG for quite some time. Although I don't upload my work there frequently, I've used some restraint in selecting which photos to share there versus what I share on Flickr. JPG could be seen as my mainstream, commercial work, whereas Flickr is a mixed bag. I'll be focusing my efforts on developing the JPG account into a sort of commercially focused portfolio. I hope you'll stop by to see my work there and leave some feedback. Visit my JPG photostream.