#1124 Laurentians / Tremblant Photo Safari and Adventure

Early mornings and a deliberate, casual pace marked this week’s photo adventure in the Tremblant area with long-time photo student Margaret.

photo adventure

Tremblant photo safari

I’ve been travelling to the region that many associate solely with the mega ski hill and village run by Intrawest. The ski hill is impressive but the surrounding hills, rivers, forests and lakes are what keep me coming back.

Like the slow food movement, I prefer observing and shooting with purpose rather than the speed of a fast trigger finger. Margaret finished the day with a manageable number of quality photos that made editing easier.

Tremblant photo safari

© Margaret A. – Laurentian’s water – learning about flow

We shot throughout the day. Yes, there are two magic hours per days. J David Andrews once told me “It’s always perfect weather to shoot something.” Likewise, there’s always something to shoot, no matter the time of day.

Tremblant region photo workshop

© Margaret A. –  Early morning calmness – a perfect time to observe and learn.

Days flew by. One day we visited a segment of waterfalls and rapids. We arrived at 11am and after what felt like an hour Margaret approached excitedly “It’s five o’clock!” When you’re excited and engaged time vanishes.

Margaret’s photos improved and her confidence grew. We both smiled, a lot! We spent evenings reviewing concepts, ideas and photos. See some of her work… Well done Margaret!

Laurentians photography adventure

© Maragret A. – We explored possibilities when shooting a scene – motion, composition, depth-of-field.

#1108 Media Literacy – Would You Trust this Teacher?

This term I am working with a Grade 5/6 class in central Ottawa.

We’re working on media literacy this term. We’re exploring many facets of media including perspective, media formats, as well as critically thinking about information presented.

Media Literacy Lesson

Teaching about trust in media – would you trust this teacher?!

Web Safety
I introduced a segment about information on the web including safely evaluating websites. I opened the lesson by ‘arriving’ incognito, above. Surreptitiously at first, I tried selling ‘solid gold’ watches, used ‘authentic’ sports cars and ‘rare, valuable’ coins to the students.

By the end of my ‘sales pitches,’ students were contentiously and verbally jousting with my fictitious character!! They didn’t trust me. That made me smile – it laid the perfect groundwork to  engage students about trusting sources of media, especially when connecting to the murky waters of the internet.

Media Literary Lesson
I quickly changed gears and introduced the students to a super, web-based lesson from Media Smarts on web safety and awareness. Media Smarts is an Ottawa-based, not for profit “charitable organization for digital and media literacy. Our vision is that children and youth have the critical thinking skills to engage with media as active and informed digital citizens.

I am close to finishing my Bachelor of Education program. In May I’ll be bringing my cast of characters to local schools as a guest teacher and supply teacher.

#1107 Photo Workshops and Private Courses

Spring is coming!
Flowers are preparing to burst into colour.
Bears are starting to stretch, ready to come out of hibernation. Sleepy photographers are starting to stir, too!

Photo Class

Push your photography limits this spring!

We’re offering two options this spring for photographers to improve their skills:

• Our classic Creative Fundamentals photo workshop
Learn in a traditional format taking advantage of live theory, practical and critique. All camera styles welcome.

• Private classes for individuals and small groups
Learn what you want, when you want.

photo course Ottawa Gatineau

Improve your Smart Phone photography!

Background – Harry Nowell
Harry Nowell has  worked for 20 years providing imagery for clients like Carleton University, Canadian Senate, Royal Ottawa Hospital, Canadian Geographic and others. His imagery has been licensed all over the world.Harry Nowell has taught photography for 15 years. His students are his best advocates!

In the age of YouTube there is a lot of free advice and “how-to” related to photography. There is also a decline in the quality of photography. From the Financial Post:
“When it comes to image quality, the real problem is that consumers no longer care.”
And there is frustration!

Photo Workshops

Improve your photography!

If you are frustrated or have a passion for quality in your pictures, we can help!

Creative Fundamentals
May 7 (evening classroom)
May 9 (practical shooting)
May 14 (evening classroom critique)
Central Ottawa/Gatineau

Private Classes
Offered as schedules permit.
$Cost depends on session:
• One person / half day = $375.
• Two people / half day = $275 each.
Prices may change without notice.

Contact us!

#1091 Student Success – Online Photo Program

© Al G. 12 foot Challenge

© Al G. 12 foot Challenge

In July we offered our Online Photo Members a different challenge.

We said they could shoot:
• anything
• anyhow
• anywhere
… as long as this month’s photos were all within a 12 foot radius (ideally) centred around their back door.

© Judy S. 12 Foot Challenge

© Judy S. 12 Foot Challenge

I thought they might say:
“But there’ll be nothing to shoot!”
“What about something adventurous?”

But they didn’t!
They got shooting and one member said:
“I had a blast with this month’s challenge!”

© Maisie - 12 Foot Challenge

© Maisie – 12 Foot Challenge

It’s harder than you’d imagine. A whole month of shooting within 452.29 square feet will stump even the most creative photographer. And that was the point.

We offered creative catalysts and ideas to bust through blocks interfering with their creative potential.

And their month’s efforts made me smile. Sounds like it made them smile, too:
“I must say that when I first heard your challenge for this month I just went brain dead.  I live 22 stories up in a building with a 6ft wide balcony  and I wasn’t sure what I was going to do.  But I surprised myself once I got started…”

© Jeffrey F - 12 Foot Photo Challenge

© Jeffrey F – 12 Foot Photo Challenge

Congratulations, everyone!

#1088 Online Photo Program – Photographing Water – Member Results!

© Jeffrey Furry - Classic Waterfall

© Jeffrey Furry – Classic Waterfall

Last month I presented our Online Photo Members the challenge of photographing water. We presented some technical tips and a broad suggestion of what was possible within the realm of water photography.

It is an amazing program and I have learned so much from it and from you.

© Al Garner - Macro Water Droplets

© Al Garner – Macro Water Droplets

I thought most people would photograph rivers and waterfalls.

I was happy to see that, while we had some (excellent) rivers and waterfalls, people pushed themselves to photograph water in many different ways including bursting water balloons!!

© Maisie Ismail

© Maisie Ismail – bursting water balloon!

“… thank you for all the instruction and encouragement from the online program for the past year plus that I’ve been a member.” LR

I’ve learned so much in the short time that I have taken part.” JS

Members make me smile – I’m proud of them all!
I’ve seen excellent shots and excellent growth in skills!

© J Scott - Home studio capture

© J Scott – Home studio capture

#1079 Online Photo Class – May’s challenge

Last month we brought our online program the challenge of getting very, very close to their subjects.

© Chris Payant - Macrophotography class

© Chris Payant – Macrophotography class

With new spring flowers bursting from winter’s depths online members  got their camera’s clicking. But members captured more than just blossoms!

© Jeffrey Furry - close-up photography

© Jeffrey Furry – close-up photography

What members said:
I loved this challenge (my fave) and I found what I love to shoot the most (I think!) 
Your on-line program is absolutely great and I have to say I have learned the most from it because of the different challenges and just the way you teach it.
Thanks for your inspiration and sharing your expert knowledge.  You get us out of our comfort zone for sure.” CP

© Gilles G - Macro - different worlds!

© Gilles G – Macro – different worlds!

What a fun challenge! I have always wanted to try and get a shot of a field of dandelions and could never figure out how, but I finally got one thanks to this challenge.” JS

I’ve been teaching photography for almost 15 years and I never get tired of seeing people grow!
Thanks for the fun!

© Maisie I. Creative Macro!

© Maisie I. Creative Macro!

#1071 Advanced Fundamentals – Photo Class Review


© AlG –  Advanced Techniques – LightPainting balanced with night light

Last weekend we ran Advanced Fundamentals – a photo course designed to take people beyond the basics of “manual exposure mode” that we cover in Creative Fundamentals.

The idea of the workshop is push people’s skills beyond their comfort levels… just a bit.

photo fundamentals

©GillesG Exploring Shape, Line and Form

We offered:
• traditional exercises to help with composition, perspective
• unusual tasks to make participants think (and shoot) differently
• advanced challenges dealing with light, shape and form

Ottawa photo class

Advanced Challenges… How is the background (metal bars above) blurred and the portrait subject sharp? (It’s not done in post processing!) © AGarner

All in all, it was a productive weekend. We dodged the rain retreating into some underground and covered secret spots I’ve discovered over the years.

Enough from me…
Students said:

“I would happily recommend – urge – anyone interested in improving their photography to take one of your workshops.”

Gatineau Ottawa Photography

Finding Beauty in Chaos © GGagnon

“Harry is very attentive to the student needs and is always available to help and answer questions – The course took me out of my comfort zone… that is good.”

“Thanks again for a fun Creative Fundamentals 2 workshop. It was very helpful and it enriched my photographic knowledge beyond what I expected.”

Ottawa photo workshop

© ALG     Secret Spots shared with participants.

#1068 How to Boost your Creativity

This month’s Exposed! photo newsletter launches today.

“His photos were beautiful but he was stuck. Our workshop student was frustrated that he had hit a plateau and couldn’t get beyond it…

The workshop student’s photos made beginners jealous – they were classic compositions – beautifully framed and well exposed. He had come on the workshop to get out of a rut.

In this edition of Exposed! we look at ways to:
• boost your creativity
• fuel new adventures in your artwork
• get out of your rut….”

Learn how to ignite your imagination’s fire!

imagination generation

Boost your creativity – try new formats and techniques…

#1060 Online Photo Program – Student Success!

We offered a “simple” challenge to our members in the online program – photographing sunrises or sunsets.

But sometimes the simple things can be the toughest!

Sunset photo challenge

Sunset Challenge – © Marcel M.

That’s right, sunsets can be really tough.

• it’s an advanced lighting challenge with often two or three very distinct light levels to choose from.
• The sun will not wait for your schedule! Finding the time to be in the right place and right time can be tough!
• Weather can thwart best intentions. March is usually quite mild but many of our members live close to Ottawa. And Ottawa is enjoying an unusually lonnnng winter which makesit tough to get out and shoot!

Sunrise photography

Sunrise Challenge – Maisie I.

Our members braved the cold and embraced the challenges to produce some amazing work. Yep, I am proud!

Students also learned a lot!:
This was a great challenge Harry and you pushed me to get out there and take photographs regardless of the weather.  This is what I love to do!
I am really enjoying this and I am hoping that your on-line program stays around for a long, long time.

Sunset Challenge

Sunset Challenge © Marie-Josée L

Your program provided really great information… I’m totally hooked!

I will definitely want to continue until September. Its a great program… Definitely great value in my view.

We’re offering a limited time offer on 6 months of the online photo program – $30 off until Saturday, March 29th. That’s just $165 (plus tax) for 6 months of online photo fun.
(Ahem, the registration button was broken last week – it’s been fixed!)
Register Online.

Online photo challenge

Sunset Photo Challenge © Al Garner

#1058 – Online Photo Program – Special Offer (for a limited time!)

Our online photo program has been going almost two years.
We’re offering a special offer for a 6 month membership for a limited time…

Online Photo Challenge

Online Photo Challenge – © Al Garner

Members are talking:

There is zero chance that I would have taken these shots without the online photography program. I think I get the biggest bang for my buck from the online program. Keep it coming!

This course has accomplished two things for me. First, it has renewed my love of photography and second it has made me a better photographer.

Yes, I am totally hooked…

Thanks Harry – I have signed up for another 6 month session. I like the challenges. It stretches my creativity.

photo challenge

Online Photo Class © M. Reece

The Online Photo Program
• A new photo challenge every month
• New content 4 times per challenge
• Ongoing feedback via a private Facebook group
• Member critique video at the end of each month

Special Offer!
For 12 days only we’re offering $30 off the regular price of $195 for a six month membership. That’s a 15% savings.

But only until March 29th…

More Online Program Details
Register now and save!

Online photo seminar

Simple Studio Lighting Challenge – Members learned to take photos like this with simple household tools!