#176 Wise Photo Quotes, continued

… a third installment of responses to “Wise Words from Working Photographers.”

Chris, a student of my Creative Fundamentals, Urban landscapes and Night Light photo workshops weighed in with this wise quote:

If nothing’s changed, don’t change anything!

Chris explains: “People get intimidated by ‘manual mode’. If they’re shooting under the same light, outdoors in the middle of the day when light isn’t changing, don’t mess with settings. Check histograms to see if you got it. Or just bracket -1, 0, +1 f-stops and pick the exposure you like.”

Chris Patten photo

Photo by Chris PattenUrban Landscapes photo course

Wise words indeed! Thanks Chris

#174 Wise Photo Quotes

Here it comes – a couple weeks ago I posted our latest Exposed! photo newsletterWise Words from Working Photographers. Other quotes started coming in – wise words – from photo fanatics. Today is the start of a feature where those tidbits are shared.

To start off this section Exposed! reader Dave sent in these wise words:

  • Hang out with those who are better than you
  • Don’t look where you don’t want to go” Both figuratively and literally. If you don’t like the shot don’t force it, find something new.
  • I took a water colours class once in Algonquin park. Kinda fun. the
    instructor had this method he referred to as “look, see, paint”… of
    course I adopted it to “look, see, shoot“… in that order.
  • For business, my sister taught me “power perceived is power
    “… I take this as looking confident is as good as being
    confident. Hence why I did a photo gallery a few years back even though
    I  didn’t think my material was the best, others still liked it. As soon
    as I did an exhibit I was then known as a photographer, instead of just
    someone who took pictures.

Thanks Dave!

More quotes in the next post. Winter has arrived in Ottawa – below is a stock photo from a shoot in our fun winters!

winter driving stock photo


#173 – Neil Young in concert

Ok, ok!

I keep saying tomorrow I will post wise quotes as a follow-up to my last Exposed! Newsletter “Wise Words from Working Photographers.”

Alas, regular programming has been interrupted again. Last night I went to see Neil Young in concert in Ottawa. I was a paying fan this time not a media photographer. So I was not going to comment on this blog… but it was a good show! Read a review and some media shooting ideas, etc.

Neil Young Review

First, Neil Young was pretty amazing. His wife was his back-up singer – nice to see them together. There were all kinds of idiosyncrasies on stage like the fine artist hidden at the back working on canvasses. He did an encore… a set of Beatles tunes. Oh, I admire what he has done.

I left all cameras at home – even my teency point and shoot – as I was not working. And I was longing to be shooting the show. That’s a good sign – if the spark or urge to shoot doesn’t exist that’s a sign of burn-out!

Ben HarperBen Harper

Shooting Concerts

I also checked the media pit at the front of the stage – I recognized veteran Ottawa media photographer John Major. I have shot a little for newspapers and it’s a tough job down there in the pit. Technically, there are some challenges beyond solid skills – mostly anticipating the performers and being in the right place at the right time.

The tough part can be the logistics. At performances, photographers usually get 10 minutes or 1-3 songs to capture their photos. Shows often start at 9pm. Deadlines are often between 9 and 10pm. You need to shoot, download, edit and send photos in a very short period of time. Any significant glitches and you are cooked. Neil Young should be front page of a newspaper section – there is no room for glitches!

Feist Feist

Past Work

I have shot many shows with work going to different clients from the Ottawa Sun to Tourism Canada. Photos have appeared in magazines, newspapers and websites in the US and Canada. Some coverage:

  • Ben Harper
  • Feist
  • Allison Kraus
  • Michael Franti
  • Hedley
  • George Thoroughgood
  • Jame Brown
  • Brian Adams
  • ZZ Top
  • Buddy Guy

See select photos at ChelseaGallery.ca

Buddy GuyBuddy Guy

Regular programming resumes… soon,


#171 Blog contest coming up

Three items today:

  1. Over the next few postings I will be passing on reader’s words of wisdom based on responses from last month’s ‘Exposed!‘ Newsletter – “Wise Words from Working Photographers.”
  2. There will also be a contest on the photo blog at HarryNowell.com in next 2 weeks. The contest will test your fun, creativity and photo knowledge. The winner will receive a prize worth $100 from HarryNowell.com.
  3. Lastly, today’s photo comes from an assignment years ago with Ottawa Magazine that has been reprinted many times. I was asked to capture ‘dinner in Gatineau Park‘ – a common night out for Ottawa skiers – there are many cabins accessible by ski. On Friday I skiied in to a cabin full of merriment:

Ottawa Magazine assignment

Gatineau Park cabins

#165 Wise Words from Working Photographers

This month’s Exposed! Newsletter was sent out yesterday:

My path to photography success was long and often bumpy. As I went I soaked up as many scraps of information as possible. Luckily, I met some good people who helped shape the foundations of my work.

In this edition of Exposed! we revisit some valuable photography advice that helped guide me along the way…

Get it right in the cameraAnthony Scullion says “Get it right in the camera – not photoshop!”

To read more sage advice please read:

Wise Words from Working Photographers.”

Have fun,


#147 “But seriously…”

It’s getting cool in the Ottawa area – dropping below 0C some nights.

My wife was driving her 125cc scooter to town and asked “What should I wear?” Considering the wind chill and cool temperature I made my suggestions that involved ‘significant insulation’. She responded “But seriously, what should I wear?”


What has scooting got to do with photography? My wife’s response was similar to student’s reaction when I am teaching outside at this time of year. Creating photos while standing still takes extra insulation to stay warm – usually more than people expect!

I sent Saturday’s Night Light photo course students my “Warm Photos from Winter’s Cold” article from ‘Exposed!

The students (and my wife) are learning the fine art of staying warm in the cold.

Winter warmth!

Winter is coming!


#142 – A big camera!

John Chiara is a photographer with a very, very, very large camera.

I found his story through PhotographyVoter.com – John has built a camera so large he moves it with a truck and climbs inside to mount the film! See his video story.

Also, our Exposed! Photo Newsletter comes out this week: “Boom went the colour! How to create vibrant photos.” We uncover secrets of pumping up your pictures. Sign up to receive ‘Exposed!’ at the top, right of this page.


#111 Exposed! and Iceland – a different perspective.

First, Exposed! went out late last night to most subscribers. You can subscribe at the top of this page – it’s free. This month’s article is:

Photography Hell in Heaven.

Second, I came across ANOTHER Iceland adventure blog (Aug 12/08) that recounts about their experiences in “NICEland.” Amy includes photos and stories of their July trip. If you look closely, ahem, you may see me “on vacation.”


#110 Reykjavik Marathon and Exposed!

I got an e-mail from Canadians Luc-Rock and Michelle who found my Iceland blog reports – they are on their way to the Reykjavik marathon in August. They have a new blog to chronicle their Icelandic marathon adventures and are billing it as the Marathon for Gaby.

My photo newsletter, ‘Exposed!’ goes out very soon – a link will be posted tomorrow to:

Photography Hell in Heaven” – an Icelandic photo story and challenge for those wishing to spark their photo creativity.


#76 ‘Google’ for photos

Exposed! photo newsletter went out late last night – New subscribers will receive the newsletter today or tomorrow! Older issues are available for reading on my site.

I recently discovered a website that searches the web for your pictures. It’s like google for your photos. Tineye scans the world wide web for other placements of your photos. Quite amazing and has great applications for working photographers!

The site is new and growing – ie it is in beta format and there is still some growth needed before it is fully comprehensive. You need to register, but give it a whirl!