Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Elf on the Shelf

So I was initially skeptical of this whole Elf-on-the-Shelf thing.  I mean it sounded just a bit too creepy that an elf would hang out in our house and fly back to the North Pole every night to report on the niceness or naughtiness of our son, only to reappear in the morning in a new hiding spot to continue his espionage.

But I have to admit, I'm having fun coming up with places to hide him.  And our son is having fun looking for him every morning and is actually concerned with how his behaviour will be perceived by Dodo (he named the elf "Dodo").

My wife suggested I post pictures of each day's hiding spot on my photo blog.  So I'll add each day's photo to this post.

Day 1:  Appearing for the first time above our son's TV (Yes we have a TV in our toddler's bedroom... don't judge us)

Day 2: On the mantle peeking out from behind Kermit

Day 3:  Hanging out above the breakfast table

Day 4:  Hiding in the pantry (can he breathe in there?)
Day 5:  Lookin' dainty sitting in our saucepan (better wash that when he moves on)

Day 6:  Good thing that's just an IKEA microwave.
Day 7:  Watching my kid sleep from behind the blinds.  Okay... you're getting creepy.
Day 8:  Dammit elf, get out of my booze!
Day 9:  Born to be mild
Day 10:  This is a little song I wrote... It's called "Livin' on the Pole"

Day 11:  Our son was not pleased
Day 12:  Whatcha makin'?

Day 13:  Elves are all about fire safety
Day 14:  Takin' a nap in the tissues.
Day 15:  He'll be taking a cab to the North Pole tonight
Day 16:  I'm starting to get uncomfortable with this.
Day 17:  This elf really knows his audience.
Day 18:  As you can pretty much guess, we called this one in.
Day 19:  Your move, Grover.
Day 20:  Staying in the lines.
Day 21:  Bag is packed.  Time to head back to the North Pole for my final report to Santa.  See you next year.

Friday, November 25, 2011

I'm Published

That's right.  I'm a star.

Not really, but a photo I took of last year's Gamercamp Lv2 event was published in both the Financial Post and Globe and Mail recently.  I'm not ashamed at all to say I feel a little giddy.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

A Day at the Park

On an unusually warm October weekend, I spent the day chasing this little one around a local playground.  I'm glad we decided to go to this nice shaded park that the family had never been to before, as the other two parks in the neighbourhood would have been in the blazing sunshine, making for some less than desirable photos and a very sweaty photographer.

New playground!

Oh, Daddy.  Let me get that for you.

This one was my absolute favourite.  I kept pausing at it every time I passed by it while editing the photos.

If you ever want a toddler to stay still for a few precious minutes, give her a camera
(one that you won't care about if it gets destroyed).
(This was her shot)

Sunday, July 24, 2011

What the hell is that?

When we moved into our house five years ago, one of the first things I did was replace some of the more out-dated electrical outlets and switches.  I came across this one in my living room.  I have never seen an outlet this old.  It looks like it was made from molded sand, which falls apart when you touch it.

I recently had the opportunity to show it to a friend on mine who is a home inspector.  His only response was "What the hell is that?".

Thursday, February 24, 2011

The Dears

I recently had the opportunity to photograph The Dears during their recent press tour to Toronto to promote their new album, "Degeneration Street".

I was feeling a little uncertain about this shoot for a few reasons:
  1. This was my first time shooting a famous band,
  2. Posed group portaits are generally outside my confort zone (I'm more about candids), and
  3. My wife is a longtime friend of Natalia Yanchak (keyboardist) and the possibility of disappointing them runs a serious risk of personal torment from my better half.
This is my personal favorite photograph from the shoot.  It could have done with a bit of bounce fill to lighten up under their chins, but there's only so much you can do sometimes.

We did the shoot at the posh hotel they were staying at.  This made it easy for the group as they were already doing numerous interviews there and they were justifiably tired due to the hectic schedule of the press tour.

I was thrown a bit of a curveball when, 5 minutes before the shoot, we were told that if any of the artwork hanging in the halls was visible and recognizable in any of the resulting shots, they would have to pay a royalty.  It would have been nice if I had been told that in either of the two visits I paid to the hotel during my location scouting, but now I'm just being nasty (and I should be very aware of other artists' copyrights anyway). 

No harm... we made it work.  But just so you know, there's more artwork than plaster on these walls.

Many thanks to the band for giving me this opportunity.

Monday, December 27, 2010

Self Portrait

I recently wanted to experiment with portrait headshots using a technique of David Hobby's, in which you place the subject in front of a reflective surface in order to get a nice specular highlight around the subject's head.  His tutorial on this subject is here and post-workshop discussion on it here.

Lacking a willing subject, I did it as a self portrait:

The black cabinet above my computer desk has a nice finish for this type of portrait.  I was stuck using my 50mm lens.  A longer lens like an 85mm would have been much better as the 50mm looks a bit to wide-angle, but then I wouldn't have been able to fit in the frame (there's not much room in front of the cabinet).

I even shaved for the photo.  Don't you feel privileged?

Monday, December 20, 2010

Baby Jack

Jack's parents seemed apologetic that he might not have smiled enough during the shoot.  As you can see, that just wasn't an issue.