Friday, October 28, 2011

Family Fall Fun

Fall is one of the greatest times to have a family portrait done!  Not only are there beautiful colours, but we also enjoy including a new family picture each year in our Christmas cards too!  This beautiful little family was a fun treat to captured memories with on their family farm recently.  Lots of bright beautiful smiles !

Schoeley 3Schoeley 1Schoeley 2Schoeley 4

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Ipad Card Reader

Ipad’s quickly rose to one of the most sought after electronic devices ever.  And with the prices becoming more and more accessible they are sure to be one of the top items out of the retail stores the Christmas.  There are some great add-ons out there as well – some of the best are available at ZaggCard readers are also available, and can be picked up between 15-13 dollars at Photojojo.



Tuesday, October 25, 2011

What You…and I Missed!

So if you were noticing the comments on Facebook last night – you  probably noticed the buzz about the Northern Lights!  Well, I quickly grabbed my camera and took off outside when I noticed…Nothing!  Actually, I did see a beautiful starry sky, but definitely no colour swirling about.  That’s the nice part about the internet though – I am able to see and share the event over and over again!  Not like seeing it first hand…but a nice second!

Northern Lights Oct 2011

Monday, October 24, 2011

Our Local Hero’s

Fire Group

The local volunteer fire fighters of Lambton Kent counties are available 24/7, in addition they also take time away from family and work to train for different rescue and fire situations.  Thank you to the over 60 firefighters, plus instructors and support personnel who took the time to take part in Saturdays Lambton Mutual Aid Training Day !

Sunday, October 23, 2011

A Real Pony - Stunt Double

A Amy Pony Girl




I can’t tell you the number of times I hear someone say that they’ve seen a commercial that looks so much like our daughter!  And they are so right!!  The colour of hair, the cow lick, those big brown eyes…and the expressions!  So for those of you who haven’t seen my daughters double I thought I would post this today !






Stunt Double

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Now Playing

Now Playing At The Forest Kineto Theatre



Oct. 21,22,23,25

Tickets $5  Doors Open At 7:30PM  Show Time 8:00PM

Monday, October 17, 2011

Great Family Fun At The Lodge

Looking for a fun time for the family?  Great Wolf Lodge is seriously one of our favourite places to go, especially during the cold wintery months!  84 Degrees in the middle of January is the way to go !

Photoshop Collage

Here is a fun tutorial that you can do easily while learning more about layers and layer masks in Photoshop.  Try it out, and leave some feedback for the tutorial maker.  Would love to see your results!




Saturday, October 15, 2011

Strobe Photography

Just a quick look at how to set up a strobe light shoot.

Strobe Photo

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Now Playing

Now Playing At The Forest Kineto Kiwanis Theatre


Oct. 14,15,16,18

Tickets $5  Doors Open At 7:30PM  Show Time 8:00PM

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Michael’s Photography Contest

Michael The Maven has recently announced his third annual photography contest!  Once again the contest is loaded with prizes and it is a great opportunity to send in your entries to show off your talents!  Please see the full details below!


Michael The Maven's - 2011 Photography Contest!!

2011 Photography Contest Information

(Please Read this VERY carefully. Failure to adhere to rules will result in disqualification from contest. I know some of these rules may seem a little harsh, but we expect between 5,000-10,000 entries this year. Last year with just 2,500 we had a lot of problems of organizing everything, so if we have a rule it is for a very particular reason that helps everyone have an enjoyable experience. :)
I normally prefer to give out a single camera as a grand prize, the first year it was a T1i, the Second Year it was a 7D and a T2i. I was considering a Canon 5Dii this year, however, I realize that there may be a replacement coming very soon. I also considered Canon 60D's for each category, however, I also realize there are many photographers out there who may not want another camera, but would prefer a lens or other nice piece of gear. I also realize there are some people who would just like some $$. So, I thought we would try this to see what the response will be:

6 GRAND PRIZE AWARDS - $1000 Each!!

(We are still looking for sponsors in the TBD slots, if you are interested or know someone who is, please contact me at
Prizes per Category:
1st Place - $1000 CASH!! (Or Gift Card in restricted areas)
2nd Place - $300 Coupon to Michael's Online Store -
3rd Place - Michael's Business Photography Crash Course DVD Set (a $250 Value)
4th Place- $150 Coupon For Michael's Online Store
5th Place- Think Tank Digital Holster (Thank you to Think Tank for Sponsoring!) - ($60 Value)
6th Place- TBD - $50 Value
7th Place- Custom Michael The Maven 16GB Thumb Drive
8th Place- Angelina Hills Matted Print (Her Work is outstanding, I have it hanging in my own home.)
9th Place- Ocean Waves Relaxation DVD by Heath Snow
10th Place- TBD $15 Value
Honourable Mentions (2) - No Prize
All Winners will receive a PDF Certificate of their Achievement
Main Categories:-
Portraits -
Abstract / Textures-
RULES (Rules are subject to change, but for now this is how I would like to run it this year) - READ THIS CAREFULLY BEFORE SUBMITTING!
1. There are no entry fees, however this is a family friendly website and we reserve the right to disqualify entries for any reason. This includes but is not limited to any image which may be deemed as inappropriate, offensive, pornographic, poor taste, cruel to animals, advertising, spam etc. We are looking for fantastic imagery that inspires all of us to get out and shoot. If you are under 18, you must obtain your parents permission before entering.
2. Entrants may submit up to 2 photographs in each category on the following condition; One image was taken in the last year (From the Period of October 9th 2010 to October 9th 2011) and a second image being taken during the duration of the contest submission dates, from October 9th - December 1st 2011. The whole idea of the contest is to get everyone out shooting, but I also recognize you may have some great shots taken earlier in the year. Contestants may submit only one image from either of those periods if they choose. This is an honour rule (meaning we expect you to play fair on this), but if we have evidence to the contrary, we will have to disqualify the entry.
3. Once your images(s) are submitted, these are your final entries. Contestants sending in multiple images, or changing submissions are disqualified. You should receive a confirmation email after submitting your images. Note; do not wait until the last day, it crashed our email account last time. ;)
4. Contest is open to all ranges of experience of photography, from beginners to amateurs, semi-pro or even professionals, however, we ask that semi pro and professional photographers do not submit images for the contest in the category in which they specialize. For example, if you are a wedding or portrait photographer, you may submit images in any category but "Portraits". This is also an honour rule.
5. Images which have been submitted and placed into other contests are not eligible.
6. By submitting your images for either division, you give Michael The Maven and its representatives, permission to reproduce & show on websites, social media or other materials for promotional purposes. We also reserve the right to print your image to inspect image quality if necessary. Copyright remains property of photographer of course.
7. We reserve the right to expand the number of winners and make adjustments to the rules and prizes at our discretion.
8. You can use any type of camera, DSLR, Point and Shoot, Cell Phone etc. (Photoshopping is allowed, HDR is allowed, presets/actions are allowed, heavy compositing is NOT (this is where many images and components are assembled together into one image.) It should pretty much more or less look like a single image. Please make sure it is a JPEG, and properly submitted & you are good to go!
9. There will be an initial selection process by Michael, which will narrow contestants down to 20 or 25 per category. The Final round of voting will be done by viewers (1/3), Our Judges (1/3) and Michael (1/3)


A. --> Entries must be submitted digitally as a JPEG image by email to All other formats (RAW, TIFF, PNG, ETC)will be disqualified. Be absolutely sure to include the Category in the Title. We are not accepting prints this year.
B. ---> Very, very important: Please submit only one email with per Category, with the year and Category division in the subject of the email. For example, if you are entering 2 Portrait Images, we would ask that you submit both together, and title the email "2011- Portrait . This allows us to organize submissions and greatly speeds things up.
If you have questions, please ask below in the comments box and I will update with answers.
Even if you are not interested in entering, please help me get the word out because I do all of the marketing for this on my own, sometimes people would love to enter and just don't about it.
These contests take up a tremendous amount of time and money to put on and I would like to make it a yearly event, getting bigger and better each year. This is the 3rd year and so far we have done this. We are super lucky to have the following celebrity photographers on board to help with judging and I am extremely grateful to them for offering to help:
Judge Panel-
Michael Andrew
Shannon Morgan - 2009 Grand Prize Winner
Fely Simion - 2010 Grand Prize Winner
Angelina Hills - World Class Maui Portrait and Wedding Photographer
Arden Ward - World Renown Alabama Portrait and Wedding Photographer
BTW- If you are feeling intimidated, Fely won last years contest. She was 16 years old at the time and won a Canon 7D Kit. If I am not mistaken, it was her first contest as well.
We must have your submissions no later than Dec 1st, 2011 at midnight Hawaii Standard time! Thank you for your support!

Friday, October 07, 2011

Boys, Boys Boys

Momma’s surrounded by boys in this family – and I have a feeling – she’s lovin’ it!  These four handsome little men along with their parents got in some running and exploring in the process of their shoot, a good way to round out the day!

 C Smith 2C Smith 1C Smith 3

Smash ‘em Up!

  The Forest Fair 2011 had it’s annual Smash Up Derby Event held as one of the final events of the fair weekend – and it was a show for all!  Thank you to the Forest Fire Fighters for presenting the show, and the many local supporters who volunteered their services to make the show a success!


Thursday, October 06, 2011

Now Playing

Now Playing At The Forest Kiwanis Kineto Theatre

The Help

Now Playing

Oct. 7,8,9,11

Tickets $5  Doors Open At 7:30PM  Show Time 8:00PM

Wednesday, October 05, 2011

Tuesday, October 04, 2011

Paul & Susannah

Bill & SusannahThis past Saturday I had the privilege of attending one of the most memorable weddings I have yet to attend – a very special wedding, as it was the wedding of my niece Susannah. The first of the Gordon Grandchildren to get married, and begin a new life together with her husband Paul. I also had the privilege of attending as a guest and was thrilled that Paul and Susannah had chosen Reid Lambshead of When He Met Her Photography out of the Toronto area to capture the wonderful memories of their day. These two gentlemen where a pleasure to meet, and did a wonderful job throughout the day. I took a few images of my own of course as the day went on and added in a few to the video at the reception. Below is a little story of the day, a collection of some wonderful memories!!