#237 Ottawa Magazine – Pumphouse Feature

I wandered by a news stand to buy a paper and noticed this month’s issue of Ottawa Magazine – my feature on Canada’s national team whitewater slalom training site is inside.

Ottawa Pumphouse kayakSarah Boudens

The “Pumphouse” is quietly and obliviously passed by thousands of commuters twice a day on the edge of Ottawa’s downtown core. Olympians like Sarah Boudens and James Cartwright train at the site much of the year.

Ottawa Pumphouse kayak

Buy the Ottawa Magazine to see more photos and read about the hard work of Doug Corkery and the Ottawa River Runners to build the site over the last 30 years… despite the bureaucratic headaches.

Ottawa Pumphouse kayakDoug Corkery

Ottawa Pumphouse kayak

Ottawa Pumphouse kayak

Ottawa Pumphouse kayak

Ottawa Pumphouse canoeJames Cartwright

#236 Photography for Communications Professionals

It’s been a busy week and one of the highlights has been the course Photography for Communications Professionals.

The Course

Harry leads a focused, interesting, extremely helpful workshop – I got what I came for.

The course is designed for those working in a significant communications department who need to work with photography as one aspect of their work. Participants included staff from many communications departments who have been asked to take photos at meetings, events or of keynote speakers, executives and staff. That’s tough work!

Photography for Communications Professionals

The Session

The exercises closely connected to my work…

The session was held at the beautiful National Gallery in central Ottawa and mixed classroom theory, practical photography, networking and discussions on photo ideas and issues around photography for communications departments:

  • consent forms
  • licensing photography
  • archiving imagery
  • negotiating with a photographer
  • usage rights and copyright

The Results

The group was fun! The exercises were challenging. The results were excellent:

  • I have never had photos that were sooooo great!!!! Thank you a thousand times. I’m going through the photos from yesterday’s workshop and I am amazed at myself (and trying to stay humble at the same time)…
  • Very informative and well worth the time and cost.

Nice work, people!

The next session of Photography for Communications Professionals is set for Wednesday November 4th, 2009.

#235 Loose Ends

The second half of this week is busy – blog posts may be less frequent!

Some notes:

• This weekend we are hosting the Night Light Photo Workshop – a pretty fun way to re-introduce yourself to the city and spark an interest in a whole new world of ghostly photo fun:

Night Light Photo workshopNight Light fun

• We now accept Visa and Mastercard. Makes things easier for everyone!

•Two editorial assignments hit the news stands soon – watch for ‘Ottawa‘ and ‘Canoe & Kayak‘ magazines –  details coming soon.

#234 Sport photography and student success!

Recently I posted a note about a past student, Yan Huckendubler, and his experiences shooting at the Pan Am Cup in Chile. Yan has kindly sent an overview of his photo and web work at the Pan Am Cup with tips and ideas from shooting an international sports event.

Some photo notes from Yan shooting from the sidelines:

Pan American Cup of Field Hockey

I have been involved for a few years as a volunteer with the Pan American (field) Hockey Federation. Recently, I was appointed “Communications Officer” at the Pan American Cup in Santiago, Chile where I was able to focus on the PAHF web site, the only source of information on the competition for the “fans back home” throughout the Americas.

Pan Am Field Hockey

Our web site  provided the results, standings, statistics, official game sheets, video-clips of post-game interviews, and a report I wrote on each game. A large number of good quality pictures taken by a team of three photographers supported the site. My role was to manage our team of volunteers, centralize all the material and post it on the site. As always, I had my own camera with me “just in case” and was indeed called into photographic action!

Not surprisingly, I particularly like to shoot the games of our Canadian Team. I know the players well, and they always appreciate receiving action pictures after a competition.

Weather & Photo Equipment

The weather was sunny and hot (+30C) throughout the competition, tough conditions for the players but ideal for the photographers. Santiago is slightly at altitude and the surrounding Andes were a stunning backdrop to the pitch. The air was dry, making for intense light and crisp colors. I have a Nikon D200 and had only brought my Nikkor 80-400mm 1:4.5-5.6, and the maximum aperture was very sufficient in these conditions.

Pan Am Field Hockey

The Photographers

I enjoyed working with photographers from various horizons and backgrounds, picking up tips on material, techniques and software. Our main photographer, a young guy from Bermuda, specializes in wedding and social events photography. He had no interest in sport until his sister was selected to the Bermuda Team and begged him to come and take pictures at a recent international event. His work was so appreciated that the Bermuda Hockey Federation invited him to Santiago for our event and we jumped on the opportunity to add him to our team.

His two pro bono gigs were certainly a good investment: he has now been contacted by the International Federation to work at future international competitions and some of his pictures have been purchased by media outlets for magazines and even a book on field hockey.

Pan Am Field Hockey

Sports Shooting Styles

It was also interesting to see his different approach to shooting the games. Most “sport photographers” tend to document the action on the pitch; some, such as me, know the sport and the players well enough to even anticipate play: if #13 is left alone in front of the goal, you know that the ball will reach him soon and that something will happen there! 

Alex, our wedding photographer, had a different eye for the game. He was of course shooting the action on the pitch but always kept an eye on potential shots behind the action, in the stands, around the pitch, with original angles, etc…

On my workshops with Harry Nowell, he insisted that we cover the whole event, not just what was on the field – but so often the advice of our teachers only registers when we see practical evidence!

Pan Am Field Hockey

The Results

Our web site received 3.5 million hits during the 9 days competition and our Canadian Team came back with the Trophy after a dramatic overtime win in the semi-final over Argentina and another overtime win in the final, this time against the USA!

This victory qualifies them directly for the 2010 World Cup in India and I have started to research the flights for New Delhi!

Yan Huckendubler, Chelsea

Nice work Yan – thanks for the report and photos!


#233 Iceland Dispatch

Kent Larus Bjornsson has sent more photos and a disptach in preparation of our Iceland Photo Tour – this time from the Snaefellsnes Peninsula:

Catch it before it is gone – The Glacier Snæfellsjökull is disappearing.
The whole Snæfellsnes peninsula is a breathtaking natural wonder. Maybe that is why much of it has become a National Park. The glacier is shrinking rapidly both in size and thickness and will not be around much longer. Already on the west side in late summer you can hardly tell it is a glacier.

British Trawler Remains

Another favourite spot for me on the peninsula is Djupalonssandur. (Deep lagoon sands). First look it seems like there is a lot of litter in the area, the metal pieces strewn across the sands are very historical. They are the remains of a British Trawler that grounded there. There was talk that they should clean it up but these iron bits of historical significance add to the character. They are constantly moving with the tide and weather – they should be left to nature.

Iceland Photo TourSnaefellsnes

Why not give the lifting stones a try!?

These stones have also been around for a long time. The fishermen would use them to determine who was the strongest and thus who was the best fisherman. There are 4 stones, if someone has not walked off with the smallest. Their names and weights are Fully Strong 154 kg, Half-Strong 100 kg, Weakling 54 kg and Bungler or Useless 23 kg. If 23 kg is all you can handle you would not qualify to be a fisherman in Iceland.


The hiking trails around Snæfellsnes are exciting and full of surprises. It is not difficult to spend a week in the area.

Iceland Photo Tour

Christopher Columbus!

Where did Christopher Columbus get the idea of travelling to North America? It was in this area. It is believed that he visited the area in 1477 and learnt about the Viking voyages to North America. Now is the time to travel in his footsteps!

Thanks Kent!

Kent’s photos show the stark beauty of the region – look for the remnants of the British trawler! Snaefellsnes also hosts one of the few farms that still prepares arctic shark – the most unusual delicacies I have ever tried – it’s disgusting – and you have to try it when you go!

#232 Creative business advice from Daphne

My tiny photography business needed help! Selling my photography and services required better promotion… I was sad to discover my fine photos didn’t sell themselves!

In the pursuit of business survival I started looking for help in the worlds of:

  • web opportunities
  • promotion ideas and…
  • writing skills


Luckily, I found editor Daphne Gray Grant‘s writing newsletter geared towards “Helping corporate writers work better, faster.” Her free weekly newletters have been a fantastic and easy way to help improve my writing for proposals, emails, blog posts and newsletters!

Creative Business Ideas

Recently, Daphne delivered a newsletter from a business perspective: “How to make money writing in a tough economy.” And her points are very good – not only for writers, but ANY self employed, creative small business. If you aspire to run a small creative business or are already earning $ at your creative discipline Daphne’s work is worth reading!

Small business is tough:

Small business is tough Business obstacles


I was fortunate enough, early on, to find the help needed to keep my little business in business. There were some very tough years! Many people misjudge what is required to succeed at a small creative business.

Better Business Skills

In that vein we started the Creative Business Seminar to provide realistic, practical ideas and networking opportunities to help people succeed in their creative small businesses.

Success Success! 

Thanks Daphne!

#230 More Student Successes!

We sometimes hear from past students on our workshops and always like to trumpet their successes!

Pan Am Cup Field Hockey 2009

Yan Huckendubler has taken two sports photo workshops with HarryNowell.com. His first session involved the U20 World Cup Soccer Championships in Canada. Our students were granted media passes and sideline access to a world cup match. On Yan’s second workshop we had media access to a pro hockey game.

Pan Am Cup 2009

Yan also has a passion for field hockey and spends time helping the Canadian Team at International events. He is covering the Pan Am Cup in Chile supporting the team by photographing and managing the web site. He recently emailed some of his photos for the blog:

Pan Am Cup Field Hockey 2009

Pan Am Cup Field Hockey 2009

Nice work Yan – great shots from a challenging event!

Coming soon we have two more sport photo workshops:

  • Sessions Sports Photo Workshop – June – we cover the world of cycling photography over a month – details comings soon
  • Polo Sports Photo Workshop – August 29, 30, September 2nd – test your sports skills alongside thundering horses!

Stay tuned and send a big cheer for Yan’s continued successes!


#229 Weekend Fun

This weekend involved a little work – including prep for our March Exposed! newsletter – but allowed for some relaxed down time.

Saturday morning involved perhaps the last outdoor hockey game of the season. We played on the beautifully smooth ice of the Gatineau River.

Some photos – I was ‘scolded’ by my team for deserting the team to take some photos:

hockey photo

The Breakaway

hockey photo

The competiton

hockey photo

Reid sets up the team photo

Thanks Reid and Becky for organizing!

And thanks, winter, for all the fun.

Tomorrow, student photos of Field Hockey from the Pan Am Cup in Chile.

#228 A Networking Story

On Tuesday I mentioned I would tell the story of HarryNowell.com getting free local promotion.

The Story

Our community has a fantastic email based bulletin board that gets sent out to thousand(s) of local people. I often post notes of community interest with links to my blog for additional info and photos. It’s good for the community and good for exposure.

A couple of weeks ago an anonymous person remarked on the community bulletin board: “I am tired of that photographer guy posting on the community board…” I was mortified.


The next day there was glowing support for me and even scorn for the anonymous poster! That was just the beginning – two more full days of supportive postings came in through the community board and email.

It was heart warming!

Harry Nowell seld portrait

… And then the phone rang. Chelsea author, Phil Jenkins, called to inquire about the whole debackle. Phil writes a regular column in the local newspaper – the Low Down – highlighting artists in the area. He wrote an article on three prominent working photographers in the region – myself, J David Andrews and Mike Beedell.

All good news!

The only downside was the paper cropped an important part of the photo I sent in. That doesn’t reflect well on my work. Sigh. The media always has the last word! The full photo:


All in all it was a pretty neat week watching how the media works. And it was all free!