#854 Portfolio reviews for Festival X

I mentioned on Sunday that I was reviewing photo portfolio’s for Festival X’s Look fest.

I finished the session late this afternoon and my head was spinning – there were a lot of photos and discussions on style, technical info and photo careers.

The Portfolios
There were many fine portfolios. One photographer that really stood out for me was that of Anyse Ducharme. Why? Her work was dramatically different from anything else at the event. She “has been working on the deconstruction and re-construction of the numeric photographic image, text and sound, by means of code corruption processes and abstraction.” (taken from her website)

Very different – very fun from an art perspective.

There was much traditional work there – some of exceptional quality.

Career in Photography?
When reviewing work I asked most people “What do you want to do with this work?” ie career, hobby, etc. Many wanted to make a career of photography but I was surprised that many did not have a real plan to bring in patrons, clients or $dollars.

I get a bit in a tizzy over this. Many new photographers / photo schools / photo classes invest heavily in the craft of producing excellent photography but spend little time learning how to make photography into a sustainable career.


Business vs Art
‘Business’ has developed a bad connotation in art circles yet any self employed artist must deal with the basics of business or end up poor and/or working at minimum wage. The basics of business include:

• production (producing art / photography)
• finding clients (developing patrons)
• making sales (selling photography / photo services)
• writing proposals (writing to promote work, get grants / media attention, deveop artist’s statements)

For years we have run photo classes to help address this gap. The Creative Business Seminar Series usually comes around in the fall.

This Tuesday evening we offer a photo class on Effective Selling for Creative Businesses. We’ve brought in a veteran salesman to help photographers (and others in creative fields) develop skills to bring in $dollars from their photography and artwork.

photo class

photo class

For many wanting to start a creative business the ‘creative’ is easy, the ‘business’ is hard. And don’t get me wrong! The creative part is NOT easy, just easier than the business of photography.

 Ok, rant is done!

Thanks to all the photographers, reviewers and organizers at Festival X. I wish everyone good luck!!

#853 – Lookfest Portfolio Reviews – Festival X

This weekend I am reviewing portfolios at Lookfest – part of Ottawa’s photography festival – Festival X. My bio…

We meet on Sunday to review a selection of Ottawa’s up and coming photographers including two of our ProProgramers & graduates of many of our photo classesScott Martin and Mercedes Deziel-Hupé –

photo class Ottawa

Mercedes in photo class at our Ottawa photo studio

I am excited to see what talents emerge from the review sessions and feel lucky to be involved. Some of Ottawa’s influential photographers and arts personalities including Tony Fouhse and Peter Simpson, “arts-editor-at-large for The Ottawa Citizen,” will be sharing their opinions, too.

#852 Open House at the Photo Studio

Ottawa photo studio open houseOttawa photo studio open house

Saturday, December 1st;
Saturday, December 8th; 1-4pm

160 Preston St between Somerset and Gladstone

It’s our third annual open house – a time to:
• celebrate photography
• be nosy and see what we’re up to at OttawaStudioWorks 
• check out what our photo students and instructors are producing
• see some new work from Watershed
• raise some money for DOGS (and all animals) at the SPCA of West Quebec

Ottawa photo exhibition

2011 Photo Studio Open House

Student/Instructor Showcase
Have you  ever taken one of our photo classes?
Are you looking for some limelight for your work?
We will be showcasing the talents of past photo students and instructors and we invite you to submit some photos for consideration to be included in the show.

Please submit up to 3 web sized photos (up to 2mb) to Harry@HarryNowell.com by October 31st. We will select the chosen participants within a few days of the deadline and ask that you deliver your prints (framed (preferred), matted (preferred) or raw prints) by November 24th

Please join the fun! Past years have been very, very fun!!

Ottawa photo studio open houseOttawa photo studio open house

#851 Ottawa Wedding Album!

We’re pulling together a wedding album for A&A that I shot late in the summer. I don’t take on many weddings – but there’s was right up my alley. They wanted wedding photos that were unposed, fun and captured the day’s unguarded moments.

It’s nice when a couple allows me to follow the fun and shoot what happens. I am not fond of very posed wedding scenarios – while teaching at the Museum of Civilzation this weekend I saw many wedding groups and their photographers set up elaborate scenarios for formal and posed photos… not so much my style!

For the most part I captured people being themselves. A&A and I visited the Wakefield covered bridge for some photos. I asked them to ignore me and talk about their wedding day… This just happens:

Ottawa wedding photo

Wedding photography, Ottawa

#850 DIY Portraits – A fun and affordable portrait experience!

Last year we unveiled our DIY Portrait package in time for the holiday season?

DIY Portraits?!

DIY Ottawa Portraits

DIY Ottawa Portraits

Yep, we set up our studio lights in the studio and invite people to plug their cameras into our system. You get the benefits of studio portraits without having to know studio skills or bring anything more than a digital SLR camera.

We plug your camera into our lights, set your camera dials and turn the studio over to you! EASY!!

DIY Ottawa Family Portraits

DIY Ottawa Family Portraits

Last year DIY Portrait clients LOVED it. I heard hoots and hollers from the studio as families produced their own quality portraits. Yep, they loved it. Read what Mommy blogger Andrea Tompkins had to say about our DIY portrait sessions.

Ottawa family portraits

Ottawa family portraits


Saturday, December 8, 2012
Saturday, December 15, 2012
Saturday, December 29, 2012


Times: 9, 10, 11, 12, 1:30, 2:30, 3:30
Time slots are 50 minutes.

Cost: $150 for one session. $250 for a double slot.

What you get:
• Supported use of a well equipped studio
• Support to connect your camera properly
• Tips on how to get the best portraits
• Copyright and printable files – you use your camera and your memory card! 

What you need:
• A digital SLR camera and lens
• A memory card
• Smiles and fun!

We offer a rental camera and memory card for a fee for those that need one.

Contact us to reserve your spot!

#848 Ottawa Photo Exhibition Fills the Studio

On Friday night one of our ProProgram graduates filled our photo studio with her courageous portraits of cancer conquerors. Lou Truss‘ show, Faces and a Cause, then filled our studio with people.

Lou Truss photo exhibition at the photo studio

Lou Truss photo exhibition at the photo studio

Lou’s portraits of young women who had defeated breast cancer started with a meeting with Katie. Remember Katie?

photo exhibition Ottawa

Ottawa photo exhibition - Lou Truss & Katie & Katie's portrait

The show was a success. At times people were jockeying at the door to get in.

For me, one of the best parts was seeing the smiling women within the portraits, live, beside their likeness on the wall.

Lou Truss photo exhibition at the photo studio

Lou Truss photo exhibition at the photo studio

Lou Truss photo exhibition at the photo studio

Lou Truss photo exhibition at the photo studio

Another good part was the money raised for Young Adult Cancer Canada. Thanks to everyone that contributed.

Lou Truss photo exhibition at the photo studio

Lou Truss photo exhibition with some of her models!!

Lou joined our ProProgram three or four years ago and developed skills through our photo classes, shadowing and support.

I am proud of her successes – keep an eye out for Lou and her cancer conquering portraits!

Lou Truss photo exhibition at the photo studio

Lou Truss photo exhibition at the photo studio

#847 Watershed featured at Festival X – Ottawa

Next week a selection of Watershed is featured at Micheal Gennis Gallery in Wesboro as part of Festival X. Please come visit and see the work, including a 40″ piece hot off the, erm, press.

Vernissage September 21st, 7pm
September 20th to 30th, 2012.

Michael Gennis Gallery

And also as part of Festival X I have been invited to be a portfolio reviewer at Lookfest. I’ll be reviewing and critiquing up and coming photographer’s work. Can’t wait!

Watershed Art Exhibition - Ottawa

Watershed Art Exhibition - Ottawa

#846 Photo classes are starting – building better pictures

We’ve been talking a lot about art and fun events and Olympics lately. But our fall workshops are about to begin!

Creative Fundamentals and Quinton Gordon’s “Authorship of Photos” start next week. There’s still a spot left for a lucky last minute person.

A couple of weeks ago Gatineau Park asked me to run photo safari for them at McKenzie King Estate. We offered hour long photo tours covering history and photo tips in the estate.

People loved it! And what was there not to love?! Good weather, experienced photo advice from a trained teacher, history and Gatineau Park! Some people took the safari twice!! It made me smile.

Stay tuned for all the fall workshops.

photo class - better photos

photo safari - Gatineau Park - courtesy of Shelly X (thanks!)

#845 Turkey Exhibition at the Photo Studio

Mark your calendars and take a trip to the streets of Turkey through Ottawa Studio Works.

We feature a photographer’s three years of seeing Turkey through her upcoming photo show at Ottawa Studio Works.

Vernissage Details:
Saturday, October 13th; 3-8pm
160 Preston St. (between Somerset and Gladstone)

Come walk the streets of Istanbul is a collection of photographic images from four Istanbul neighborhoods: Tarlabaşı, Eyup, Galatasary and Taxim.

The featured photographer is a teacher and photographer who spent 3 years living and working in Istanbul.

Turkey Photo Exhibition

“Come walk the streets of Istanbul” ©

In Istanbul, there is a café that has all the original glass, wood and brass fixtures from its construction in the 1840.  The walls are decorated with large tile mosaics depicting two of the four seasons.  The tiles were shipped over from France, but two seasons did not survive the voyage, so only spring and autumn are displayed. 

Here at the Café Markiz is where I enjoyed my first Turkish coffee, served with a glass of water and a piece of Turkish delight.  Proper Turkish coffee is rich and smooth, with creamy foam on top, served in a small espresso cup with a saucer. 

Turkey Photo Exhibition

“Come walk the streets of Istanbul” ©

You have to be still when you drink it, because moving around will disturb the grounds and muddy the flavour.  It has to be savoured because the cups are small and you can’t drink it all the way to the bottom.  It is not really like coffee at all – more like a rich, sweet dessert – like a truffle – to be enjoyed at the end of a meal, or as a special treat late in the afternoon when you need a boost of energy.

I loved it so much that I had my Turkish colleagues teach me proper technique and we took turns making Turkish coffee for the office.  It became a friendly competition – who was closest to perfecting their technique? 

Turkey is filled with many such experiences for those who are willing to slow down, be still and embrace the unexpected; the beauty of the landscape, the layers of history, the mixtures of modern and ancient, the variety of food and regional delicacies, and most rewarding and beautiful of all, the warmth, generosity and civility of the people… A country with many flavours.

The collection of photographs in this exhibition is a visual short story of my experience with the human landscape of Istanbul.  So, come take a walk with me.”

Turkey Photo Exhibition

“Come walk the streets of Istanbul” ©