#1081 Exposed! Photo Newsletter – Following your Passions

Last week we sent out our latest Exposed! photo newsletter.

In it, we explore creative passions and where they can lead. We also look at reality and those who preach based on their rocketing rise to success!

Read more.
Follow your own path!

train tracks

Follow your own path

#1054 Exposed! Photo Newsletter – The Low Down on High ISO

At the end of February we sent out our latest photography newsletter based on a question from one of our Online Program Members:

“… shouldn’t I keep the ISO low whenever shooting?”

My answer has steadily changed as the world of photography has re-invented itself.
Get the latest ISO details to know when to use what ISO:

The Low Down on High ISO”

High ISO shooting

Until fairly recently I would never have dreamed of shooting at 1600 ISO for a client shoot. (Many years ago) when I first started shooting stock I did not dare shoot above 100 ISO!


#1050 Web distractions

A big thanks to our readers for the content of this edition of web distractions!
We have a long list this week!

Keeping up with Olympic photo deadlines
Past student, Nathalie Madore, shared this link from a photographer on the pressures of shooting the Olympics!

Beauty without Processing
Nichole McGill shared a link to real beauty.

Librarian Portraits
A reader who prefers anonymity offers a whimsical look at the look of librarians!

analogue photography

Film photography – slide, light table and loupe!

Sexism in stock photography?
‘Anonymous’ also offered this look about sexism in stock photography.

14 Photo Project Ideas
Barbara McKenzie sent this look at some good ideas to boost your photo creativity.

Toilet Paper Roll Art!
Dave Andrews offered this very fun look at amazing art found inside toilet paper rolls!

“Humans of New York” Photographer Interview
Hagen Hohn, past student, sent out this link of an interview with ‘overnight photo success’ photographer Brandon Stanton.

proper exposure

Blacks ad whites – proper exposures!

#1048 Stock Photography Assignment – Trip to the Dentist

A while back I did some work for the Dentist in Commack who were looking to upgrade their online presence.

After consultation and some logistics I went to their office to capture the smiling faces behind the dental practice.

There were more smiling faces when I handed in the work. They were thrilled and so was I – this is my favourite type of photo work – a targeted stock assignment.


Stock photo assignment – Ottawa

Ottawa Gatinea

stock photography – targeted promotion

commercial stock assignment

Stock photography – Ottawa/Gatineau

#807 Assignment Spotlight – Private Stock Photography Collection

stock photography assignment - Ottawa

stock photography assignment - Ottawa

Last month I went back to Westboro Academy to continue my work developing their bank of imagery that they draw on for promo and other uses.

They’re great to work for – we’ve been working together for a few years now and they recognize the value of producing new stock every year to keep their campaigns fresh, lively and current.

stock photography assignment - Ottawa

stock photography assignment - Ottawa

Attached are a few photos from this years work.

Thanks for the fun!

stock photography assignment - Ottawa

stock photography assignment - Ottawa

#385 Cycling in the city

Recently a reader sent me links to fabulous photo based websites devoted to bike commuting in Copenhagen, Denmark.

If you like bikes, urban photography, bike commuting you’ll enjoy Mikael Colville-Andersen’s CopenhagenCycleChic.com, Copenhagenize.com and his City of Cyclist’s video.

Thanks, Joel, for the tip!

In the early days of this business our main focus was stock, stock, stock and I shot lots of motion, sports imagery – like the city bike commuter, below.

Stock photography is the niche whereby people shoot imagery without specific buyers in mind, usually letting agencies find the sales. Below is a cross processed photo from our early days. I acted as model and photographer – yep that’s me on the bike:

Stock bike photo - Ottawa

Stock bike photo - Ottawa

#128 Stock Photography List

My photo career started with a very narrow goal – to shoot and sell stock:

stock photo

The stock aspect of my business continues through agencies and my office, but my business is more diverse now than I ever dreamed it would be.

Why? Partly because other photo work intrigued me and became commercially successful. And partly because the stock industry started changing in big ways in the mid to late 90’s:

  • Royalty free hit the market, offering “ludicrously low prices” on stock imagery.
  • The web had a huge impact and made more imagery more available.
  • Crowdsourcing undercut the “ludicrously low prices” of royalty free!

Stock is still one of the most fun parts of my business. I found a blog posting recently from APhotoEditor.com that lists many stock agencies worldwide – mine included – it’s a fun list to cruise.

My favourite stock subject – anything dynamic, fun, different- see swing above.

My biggest sale – fun, dynamic, different shot of a car in rush hour shot from above the driver’s window. Licensed in Columbia through AGEFotostock.com

My image with most sales – bowling pins being blasted by bowling ball – with motion. Licensed by FirstLight.com

Shoot what you enjoy – it’ll make a difference!


#58 Scooters

Researching some new ideas for stock was on the agenda recently. My girlfriend bought a scooter last summer and loves it!

We went on an exploratory creative ride with her scooter and my teeny Nikon P50 ‘point and shoot’ to test a few scooter ideas for my stock photo work – likely for my main agency, AGEFotostock. The scooter concept went well.


I was a little frustrated with a couple of limitations of the point and shoot – ie a short & frustrating delay. It IS a consumer based P&S that I do not know well… I was asking a lot – like asking a SMART car to perform like a Porsche 911.

The session gave me enough info to shoot the work properly with an appropriate camera and more attention to the set – clothes, etc.

This is a great part of my work – very fun for Harry!

#30 New pictures

One of my agencies has just uploaded some new imagery. AGE Fotostock in Spain licenses my work around the world. They do not sell photos – they sell “rights” to use photos for specific purposes. This is known as “licensing” the imagery. This industry is called “stock photography.”

See one of the images recently posted:

My Mum had had foot surgery and kindly agreed to model from her wheelchair. I took a dual role as photographer and model – that’s me in the red t-shirt multi tasking. The camera was attached to the wheelchair which gave the opportunity for some funky motion!

Stock photography is, in some ways, my favourite type of work and the initial reason I got into photography as a career! My work is now quite diverse but stock comprises a good chunk of my photo life.