As mentioned in my last blog, I had the opportunity to work with SweeterFix; an on-line service that allows clients to order fresh baked goods from local bakeries and patisseries through their easy-to-use website and mobile app. I LOVE photographing food, especially desserts! When the folks at SweeterFix asked me to photograph more of their delectable goodies, of course I said YES! This time I photographed models, Cynthia and Callan with the desserts to add a lifestyle element to the photos. Adding lifestyle or environmental portraiture with a product is a great way for potential customers to visualize their need for the product and understand your brand. Here are a few photos from our session.
It really was a pleasure photographing the many desserts that my newest client, SweeterFix, has to offer. SweeterFix is a convenient on-line service that enables clients to order fresh baked goods from local bakeries and patisseries through their easy-to-use website and mobile app. Here are a few photos from our sweet photo session ;)
It was such a wonderful and rewarding experience photographing the residents and staff of a long term care home in Waterloo, Ontario this past December. Hired to take a “day-in-the-life” documentary approach, I had full access to the facility, photographing the events and moments as they unfolded.
Over the three days that I was there, I learned many names and faces, as well as, the jobs needed to make everything run smoothly. I witnessed laughter and camaraderie. I saw the joy in the faces of those who had visits from loved ones and when a favourite song was played. Through my lens I became a part of the community.
I was a little sad to leave as I became quite fond of some of the special characters who touched my life. However, there is some comfort knowing that the images I took will, in some way, make time stand still.
- Lori-Anne Crewe
Food photography is everywhere--on trucks and billboards, in magazines, blogs and Facebook posts. I personally love looking at photos of food. In fact, I can't buy a cookbook that doesn't include images with the recipes. And I can't tell you the number of magazines I have purchased because of the decadent chocolate cake or cheesy casserole on the front cover. On the contrary, I have also seen some really bad, almost lost my appetite level of food photography. Do you remember the series of dinner photos Martha Stewart tweeted using her phone camera? Her followers reacted with comments like, "That looks like spit and diarrhea" and "Better than prison food?", or my personal favourite, "Looks like a present from my dog". Poor Martha.
Great food photography is truly a combination of art and science. In addition to proper lighting and correct choice of lens, there are little tricks, creative applications, and props that are used to make food look fresh, plump and ready to eat. Stylists or photographers often spray glycerin on fruit or vegetables to add beads of moisture or insert make-up sponges between the layers of a hamburger to make it stand tall and proud. Meat is generally under cooked and painted with Kitchen Bouquet Browning Sauce and branded with skewers to give it a "hot off the grill" look. Some trickery perhaps, but necessary when working with perishables and competing with the ultimate adversary--time!
A few weeks ago I had the opportunity to work with Chelsea Robinson, owner and primary chef at Lamplight Diner in downtown Ayr, Ontario. Chelsea started her business in 2016 after graduating from the culinary program at Conestoga College. Chelsea needed photos for advertising that would highlight her signature home-cooked style meals and baking. It was very difficult handling the food without having the urge to take a bite! I've provided a few of the photos from the day. I will be adding more photos in the coming weeks, so please visit again!
American photographer, Dorothea Lange, said, "The camera is an instrument that teaches people how to see without a camera." Dorothea's statement resonates with me. After years of making images, I instinctively view the world around me with curiosity and purpose, with or without a camera in hand - I can't help it. I've trained myself to search for light patterns, leading lines, intersecting objects, colour harmonies, unique faces and landscapes, no matter where I am or what I am doing. This way of "seeing" has forced me to live in the moment; enriching my experiences with the people I meet and the places I visit.
There are many times in my life that I wished I brought a camera with me. Like the time I was in Alberta driving down a country road, surrounded by mountains, and a real-life cowboy on a horse was lassoing an escaped bull. Damn! Or those less epic but beautiful misty mornings on my drive into the city where the sun is just rising and the dew is glistening on the grass. Even if I'm not camera-ready, I take mental note and revisit if I can.
Fortunately, I was fully prepared for an evening of photo-taking for my visit to the Paris Fair last month. Fairs are always so much fun - lots of colour, movement and interesting people to photograph. My senses were on high alert as I snapped away. Even if you don't make a living as a photographer, I highly recommend bringing your camera to a fair or amusement park. Observe your surroundings; look at the interesting lines, the bright hues, the patterns of light or the smile on a child's face as he is about to ride the carousel and start framing the subject through your lens. I promise that once you start, you will see, too.
I am often inspired by colour; particularly primary blues, reds and yellows. Just looking at pleasing colour combinations brings me joy. When I spotted a yellow, vintage suede coat at a thrift shop a few months ago, I was ecstatic - I had to use it in a portrait! I also found a similar hue on a workshop wall not too far from my house that would make a perfect backdrop. My creative juices were flowing. Now all I needed was a model.
Call it coincidence, serendipity or divine intervention, things seem to fall into place sometimes. I received a message from my friend Jane Van Pelt, also a photographer, that Megan Allan from ANM Management modelling agency would like a few photos for her portfolio. Voila! It was a perfect match.
Megan was a dream to photograph. Her delicate features and slight physique were exactly what I envisioned for the series. We did a few costume changes and used colour as the inspiration for the shoot. Although it was a challenge, I used the mid-day sun to create deep contrast and shadows, mindful of not overexposing Megan's beautiful ivory skin. The only aid I used to control the light was a reflector.
My sincere thanks to Megan, Jane and Diane for helping to make my colourful vision a reality. Here are a few of my favourites from the shoot.
I was 5 when I was introduced to the musical talents of Elvis Presley. Even at such a young age, I could appreciate his velvety voice, rhythmic moves, and million dollar smile - the combination that made Elvis a superstar. I can't call myself a hard-core Elvis fan, but I marvel at the legacy that he has left behind. Before his death in 1977, Elvis recorded approximately 784 songs, earned 28 gold records, made 31 movies and attracted millions of fans. Today, there is an estimated 85,000 Elvis Tribute Artists (ETAs) from around the globe that keep the music and spirit of Elvis alive by reenacting his performances at various festivals, concerts and competitions. Last weekend I had the opportunity to photograph my first ETA competition in Toronto, Ontario at the Flaming Star Festival, and I loved every minute of it!
Sideburns: The Ultimate ETA Fan Magazine hired me to photograph the Gospel competition and final performances in both the professional and non-professional categories. Since it was my first ETA competition I wasn't sure what to expect. I was immediately struck by, not only the quality and authenticity of the performances, but by the reception of the audience. It was a community based in mutual appreciation for the music and legacy of the King of Rock and Roll.
In terms of photography, my goal was to capture the passion and energy of the performances. The stage lights were bright enough to allow a lower ISO; however, due to the constant movement I had to increase my speed. I did not use a flash unit because I wanted the focus to remain on the performers and not the cluttered background. I have featured the portraits of Bruno Nesci, William Young, Anthony Joseph, Mike Calamusa, Eddy Popescu, Eric Evangelista and Gord McNeil. I hope you enjoy the photos as much as I enjoyed photographing them!
I know I have said this before, but I'll say it again - I love my job! I am fortunate to meet some truly inspiring and talented people and visit places I've never been. Last Saturday I had the awesome opportunity to photograph Jayson Spank from Love, Peace and Grease Productions at Pride-Toberfest, a celebration and fundraising event for the LGBTQ+ community. Jayson is a DJ and producer based in Guelph, Ontario and recipient of the Diamond Award for Best Disc Jockey and DJ Service 2017, Guelph Mercury Tribune Readers Choice Awards. Jayson is a true professional and skilled DJ. I had a difficult time keeping my camera steady as I couldn't help but move to the tunes (seriously).
For Jayson's portraits, my intention was to capture the energy of the event while focusing on the skill that is required to manage and produce the music. Photographing in low light can be a challenge, but with off-camera flash, unique effects can result. I used two Canon speedlites, with a blue filter and grid. The lens flare as seen in the photo above was created by pointing the flash directly at the camera. In my opinion, this lighting effect complements the style of environmental portraiture. I hope you like the results!
For this photography session I was on location at a skate park in Kitchener, Ontario photographing beautiful and youthful Emma from Cameo Models. Emma needed a variety of posed photographs for her portfolio and upcoming pageant, so we decided the skate park would be an ideal backdrop for the style she wanted. Here are a few photographs from the session.Read More
Who likes posing in front of a camera? Not me, for one! Most of us will admit that we feel awkward and tense when a lens is pointed in our direction. I suppose these feelings can be described as a form of stage fright or performance anxiety - a fight or flight response when confronted with adversity. Like any skill, posing comes with practice and understanding, but most of us are not professional models gracing the covers of fashion magazines. That is why it is my job as the photographer to make my clients feel at ease in front of the camera, to create an atmosphere that will bring the best photographic results.Read More
A few weeks ago I had the awesome opportunity to attend the Professional Photographers of Canada (PPOC-ON) Annual Model Shoot and BBQ in Hamilton. I was a little nervous at first as there were many talented and experienced photographers in attendance; however, that soon waned as I slid into my portrait groove.Read More
Usually my week-ends are spent photographing weddings or events, or culling photographs on my computer while simultaneously watching Netflix through the corner of my eye. Instead, I decided to get out the plaid, pull on my wellies, slap on some sunscreen and go on Tour de Farm a self-guided tour of 4 family farms organized by the County of Brant.Read More
The 365 photo project I started in January didn't work out so well (halting after only 18 days!); however, I did manage to find inspiration from a few photos I took in and around my home town. 10 KM is a new project documenting the area and land in which I live. I'm stepping out of my comfort zone to attempt landscape and nature photography. I think we should all step out of our comfort zone once in a while - the challenge keeps us on our toes ; )
I'm using Squarespace as my template provider. It is (fairly) easy to use and I love the layout and template options. The hard part: choosing photos! This business and website has been 3 years in the making. After graduating from the Photography program at Conestoga College, and years of dreaming, I can say that I'm ready! Please stay tuned as I create new ideas and explore in my virtual sketchpad.