Saturday, May 30, 2009

War Hero

Today I was doing some copy work for my Mother in law. You see her Dad was in the war, and returned home just before her 5th birthday. Sadly, at the time of his return, it was known that he would not live long as a result of his injuries, he died a short time later. I got to read through some of the letters as I carefully laid out each piece, each letter, each medal, each token of remembrance that had been kept safely in a box. This is just one of the little personal notes, and a valentines card, sent from a little girl, to her Daddy in another country, there, to protect her freedom...and ours. A War Hero to more than one "Little Eleanor".

Tamrac Camera Bag

Ebay can be good for some purchases, and this was one of them! I was thrilled when my "lightly used" camera bag arrived this week. I opened the box only to find that about the only use this bag got was maybe being picked up once ! It was in immaculate condition - and guess what? It's used now! It's been on a roll for a couple of days now, making life soooo much easier, and I am thrilled that it basically carries everything but my back up equiptment, digital frame, and my laptop. (it' got the pocket for a 15" laptop though) A Great Bag - Tamrac 5265

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Depth Of Field

Depth of field can be one of the most difficult aspects of photography to grasp. Really simplified it is like this: Small F Number (ie. F2.8) equals small amount in focus. Large F Number (ie. F22) Larger amount in focus. Yes, there is more involved as far as working out ISO numbers, shutter speeds and how they interact - but it's a beginning.
This picture was taken F 2.8 1/500 ISO 125 .

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

I Love You

Sign language has always been a small part of the kids lives since they were babies. Lately Bradley's big thing is to tell us he loves us this way. It's so cute, his pinky goes up, then his thumb, and then he looks at his hand as he manages to get that pointer finger to raise, finally ready, he calls, and holds his hand up!

Monday, May 25, 2009

Gordon Sights

Do you see the letters G O R D O N above ?

This morning I went out to take some pictures just for the fun of it! It was so nice to spend some time just looking at interesting patterns and shapes out at my brothers farm. Here's a quick look at some of the interesting things you'll find on Gordon's Roxburgh Farms!...I'm working on "Jennings". but I need Ralph's motorbike first for another n and an s.

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Preparing for your wedding day photography

Many of you know I follow a number of blogs (Michael Andrew, David Jay, Melissa Jill, Jasmine Star, The Image Is Found, and Matt Nicolosi to name just a few)– I feel it is important to continue to keep up with not only the technical aspects of photography, but also the styles, and any other tidbit that other photographers experience in their business. The following is an excerpt and image by Melissa Jill of Melissa Jill Photography out of Phoenix Arizona. These four points were well thought out, and worth the read. If you are in the process of planning your wedding day, please take the time to read this, and …take a look at the Melissa Jill Photography site!

#1 Plan out the timing of your wedding thoughtfully
…Make sure to time your ceremony so there is sufficient light available. Natural light makes all the difference in the quality of your photos. Always plan at least a half hour after the ceremony to interact with your guest of your family before even beginning the portraits. So overall, make sure the ceremony ends 2 hours before sunset to be safe. In addition, I recommend planning in extra time between different events of your day as there are always unexpected things that come up and this will help to reduce stress and allow you to enjoy your day.
#2 Communicate to me any “must have” shots
I will typically shoot the following formal portraits:
Bride &Groom
Bride&Groom with Bride’s extended family
Bride&Groom with Groom’s extended family
Bridal party all together
Bride with bridesmaids (grouped and individually)
Groom with groomsmen (grouped and individually)
If there are others you would like to have, simply email them to me. I encourage you to not get too carried away with the list. I will be shooting constantly and am sure to get a wide variety of shots that you will like. As an artist it is important for me to be able to stay in the creative zone and shoot moments as they happen instead of being tied to a long list of shots that need to be checked off. I do want to accommodate your desires so please make them known.
#3 Prepare your family and friends for the style of photography you have chosen
As you know, my style of photography is highly photojournalistic. This means that I will follow your through out the day and shoot all the details and special moments as they happen. It is important to communicate your excitement about your choice for photography to your family and riends. Write them all an email and include my website: and encourage them to take a look. When they see examples of my work they will better understand what I am doing on your wedding day. They will feel more comfortable around the camera. In the email also encourage them to ignore me as much as possible. I try to be unobtrusive and invisible as much as possible. This way I get much more natural shots. Preparing your family and friends will help everyone to enjoy the day and will insure that I capture the best images of your day.
#4 Trust Me
It is my hope that you hire me because you trust that I will do a fabulous job documenting one of the most important days of your life. I promise to do my best for you. What I want most for you is that you will be able to enjoy your wedding day, free of any worry that all the right shots are being taken. So determine ahead of time to enjoy your day and to relinquish control over the photography on the day of your wedding.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Little Miracles!

Adorable Little Ones
I love to photograph your little miracles, usually within the first 5 days of their arrival. Unfortunately, sometimes it is necessary that your little one can not come home right away, and an extended stay is necessary. If your little one will need an extended stay in the hospital, please feel free to call, or send me an email. I would be honoured to help you announce your little one to the world by coming to your hospital, do a brief, stress free sitting for you, and design an announcement card for you. I will send your announcement card online to a store of your choice, and have a disc of your pictures for you – ready to pick up when you are ready. This is a free service, and there is absolutely no charge for the sitting, announcement or disc.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

World Clock

Move your mouse over where you want to see the time - Just a cool little widget!

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Digital Image File Storage

This is of course a must. There is actually a prediction out there that because of our digital age of photography, with many people only taking the pictures, and not printing them off, that years of pictures will be lost due to improper storage, and other disasters like computer crashes. The top 2 ways of storing your images in my opinion are: an external hard drive, and online ie. Smug Mug. Here's why:
Jump Drives & Memory Cards - they are meant for temporary storage, long term, it's a risk you don't need to take.
CD's & DVD's - Expectant life span approx 7 years
Computer Hard Drive - with the size of files that today's cameras are taking being so large, this will quickly bog down your system, on top of which, risking your images to a virus is a very common threat.
It's an investment, but a REALLY good one - use an external method - external hard drive and/or online storage ie. Smug Mug

Monday, May 18, 2009

MA Photography Workshop Tour

World Renown Photography Instructor Michael Andrew is putting on a 50 State, 3 Country, 20 Workshop Tour!
Date: Thursday, July 16, 2009
Start Time: 8:45am
Location: Lambton Shores, ON
Contact Info:

Sunday, May 17, 2009

And Who Could Forget The Rings

Of course I have to do a post on the rings, one of my favourite parts of a wedding is coming up with something that personalizes the rings with the details of a couples wedding! A stem of these beautiful flowers were at each of the guests tables, a simple yet elegant touch.
F5.6 1/200 ISO800 16-35mmL with 2x teleconverter

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Stephen & Jennifer

The weather held out perfectly for this beautiful couple, as they celebrated the beginnings of life together as Mr. and Mrs.

Thursday, May 14, 2009

White Balance And Presets

Ever wonder what your white balance on your camera does? Well basically your camera just isn't as intelligent as those cool eyeballs God created in each of us! Granted there is AWB - auto white balance setting, but even though it does a pretty good job, it can still really get confused when shooting in shade or other lighting ie. florescent lighting. Your colours may not appear as vibrant, or they may even give you a colour cast - Don't be afraid to play with your white balance to see what type of looks you can get.
The pictures posted here are:
1. White balance set improperly to florescent 1/250 f 7.1 ISO 100 EF L 16-35mm
2. White balance corrected Plus:
Lightroom Presets Applied Rawesome, Epic Seims Dark Vignette, Seims Nature Boy

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

How To Shoot Fireworks

So, we are about to celebrate the May 2 4 Weekend, and no doubt there will be fireworks! Well, first of all, let me say, these pictures - I did not take - they are simply a result of a google images search, because I am too lazy to go get some shots off the external hard drive. But...I am going to tell you how to get shots like these, and believe it or not - It's very easy.
First, don't try to anticipate when the bang will go off, or when the shower of light will fall. All you really need is a tripod, a camera with a bulb feature, a shutter cable, and a general knowledge as far as what direction the fireworks are about to go off in. Simply point your camera and set your camera to bulb - this allows you to leave the shutter open with one press on you shutter button on your remote. The shutter will not close again until you press the shutter release once again-this allows you not only to see all of one firework go off, but essentiall you could have 3 or 4 fireworks in one picture. Note the use of a remote shutter release is to avoid camera shake. Enjoy!
ps. Same basic concept for lightning.

Monday, May 11, 2009

Domain Hosting Companies

Have I mentioned lately just how much it bothers me to deal with companies that don't even give an option to contact via email, far less a phone number. My web hosting company is Great - they've got phone numbers, and email addresses posted easily so you don't have to spend the first hour searching, the domain names hosts are a much different story. First of all, it is highly likely you have NO IDEA who your host is, as it gets sold when you sign up, thinking that you are with one company, only to find out, you are actually subcontracted out to someone 3 or 4 steps down the line...and they have a password for you, which you don't know, but you will need to enter it, if you ever happen to manage to find their secret contact information in order to make any needed changes. I am rather frustrated with this process as is evident. I just want to say, 'hey, I need to make a simple change here, it only needs to take 30 seconds tops', but the search process to find a human to make the change takes weeks, and no surprise, I end up leaving an automated trouble ticket online with a company my account is with, that I have never heard of, and possibly, just possibly may get a reply from. Of course the subject line will probably say something like: 'do not reply to this email, it is automated!' There's my gripe, hopefully it will be a very long time before the next!

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Twins Day At EBC

One Year Already - WOW
Two sets of twins one year apart...ok, no need to hold your breath any longer, they are from seperate families, just happen to be in the same church family! Congratulations Girls...or should I say - Congratulations Mommy's and Daddy's, you made it ! What a Great Deal To Celebrate On Mother's Day!

Saturday, May 09, 2009

Proud Of The People I Met Today

Despite the weather it was a busy day of sittings. Three in all, I felt sorry for the families, and the one couple as they braved the cold. Me being the big wimp with cold, I was able to wear my coat; lets just say I'm very proud of the individuals I met today!

Friday, May 08, 2009

Tips For Caring For And Using Your Memory Cards

Your Memory Cards - Keeping them Healthy
Extracted from an article by Darren Rowse.
1. If Disaster Strikes – Stop Shooting
All is not necessarily lost, you may be able to recover your images, don’t use the card or you will simply overwrite them.
2. Delete Images on your Computer not In Camera
The Rule is that the fewer times you add or remove datea on your card the better. Erasing all your images at once after uploading them to your computer means one erase cycle rather than lots of them if you delete them one at a time on your camera.
3. Remove Cards Safely When Connected To Your Computer
After uploading images to your computer from a card make sure you follow the proper procedure to eject the card.
4. Multiple Cars Can Be Better Thank One
Basically, don’t put all your images in one basket!
5. Avoid Filling Your Cards Completely
Regularily remove images off of your card, rather than when they get full.
6. Periodically Reformat Cards.
This will wipe any data, images, file names on the card and set it up fresh for your camera. Only do this AFTER you’ve downloaded any images on the card or you’ll lose them. Also, do the formatting in the camera you want to use the card in.
7. Keep Your Camera Up To Date.
Camera manufacturers will release firmware updates from time to time. These keep your camera up to date with any fixes for errors or problems that are identified with a camera. Some of these can relate to the camera’s interaction with the memory card.
8. Replace Batteries Before they run down
This will stop you losing that last image but also can stop card errors that can occur when an image is not fully written to a card.
9. Don’t switch off your Camera too quickly after shooting
When shooting in ‘burst’ or ‘continuous shooting’ mode (lots of images quickly), a camera needs a little time to wrie all of the data you’ve taken to the memory card. The camera will need time to buffer the images and if you switch it off during this process you’ll lose images and could even find yourself with a system error.
10. Maintenance
Keep your card dry and clean, don’t expose them to extreme temperatures, don’t drop, bend or puncture them, and don’t expose them to magnetic currents.

Thursday, May 07, 2009

The Life Of Your Memory Card

I recently received this article by Barry Smith – Very informative whether you are take pictures as a beginner, a pro, or somewhere in between.
They’re ultra small, decidedly clever, mostly reliable and offer remarkable storage capacities. But beware of their fragility…mistreat them and they’ll snap back with distressing damage. Reliability has increased to about a million write cycles from the past. Now the tricky bit: a single write cycle is not merely the action of writing a single image to the card. The cars write a single block at a time; this may total a couple of kilobytes each. Even if the computer is not interfering with the data on the card it still continuously accesses the card. This action is similar to a write cycle. The longevity of your card is directly affected and can be decreased quite significantly. Some people say they’ve ;lugged their card into the computer and started reading the image directly from the card: “If you think about how many millions of times the computer will be accessing the card just to read parts of the picture, byy reading and reading and rewriting – even small changes- you might reduce the card’s life expectancy by half just by reading a single picture.

Some helpful tips on extending the life of your card:
• The best approach is to load your memory card, copy the images on it directly to your hard drive. Then take the card out.
• Keep the card in the computer no longer than necessary. Do the image downloading from the card, then extract it. Left in the computer it will continuously access the directory, checking the byte order, to see if there are any changes etc. This action is identical to a write cycle so the life of your card is reduced. Don’t work on the image while it’s still on the card. You culd easily knock out half of the life expectancy of the card just by doing that with a single image.

Wednesday, May 06, 2009

A Spring Walk

Bradley and I went for a little walk this morning, and found that the fish were beginning to spawn, and the toads were out for some attention too!

Tuesday, May 05, 2009

Burger King Fun

Tonight we took Amy and the Bradley's to Burger King for "dinner" and FUN...lots and lots of FUN!

Monday, May 04, 2009

Backyard Play

I have this philosophy, and I know it's not unique to me. But I figure, have the fun in your own backyard, and the kids friends with come here - I like it this way. Amy love the climbing ropes, she has a lot of her mother in her! But the all time best backyard simply, the sandbox!
F2.8 ISO 100 1/1600 with 50mm prime lens

Sunday, May 03, 2009

Tulip Beauty

Playing with the new lens, and the tulips.
2x converter plus 16-35mm L , ISO 100, F/4.0, 1/60th

Saturday, May 02, 2009

Jillian & Pierce

Jillian and Pierce were given beautiful weather today, and a fantastic wedding party to boot!

Friday, May 01, 2009

Natalie & Adam May 1, 2009

Natalie and Adam - They braved the weather-and they won out! The rain held off right till the end; sure there were a few drips here and there, but these two were not going to let it bother them. The ceremony was very personal, and it was great to see the expression on the groom as he first saw his beautiful bride. Congratulations you two - what a beautiful day!