|Welcome. In this space I display examples of my work, with the intention of sharing with you my vision of the things I photograph. Regardless of the subject matter or topic, I try to give the viewer a fair and honest look from the perspective that I see things from.|
|Much of my work can be labeled as "documentary". As such, one must understand that the objectivity that is (incorrectly) associated with documentary work must be considered in relation to the photographer's personal vision and point of view. Three photographers can shoot the same subject matter and you will get three bodies of work, each representing the subject from the point of view of that particular photographer. Things like framing/composition, what was photographed or not, various technical/artistic techniques, etc, will all give a different slant on the same subject matter. So the work that I present to you is fair and honest from the perspective that I see it as being fair and honest. ..MORE|
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Photography is inherently subjective, because it's photographers, all
of whom have their own subjective qualities, who create it.
Often viewers are fooled into believing that photography is completely
objective because the camera captures the literal image of what is in
front of it. However, all those in the know agree that the camera is a
subjective tool because people are inherently subjective in one way or
another. We all have cultural, ethnic, political, gender, economic, or
other subjectivity due to varying life experiences. These are not
necessarily good or bad, they are just different. Then to top it all
off, each viewer will bring with them their own subjectivity to the
interpretation of work. I have seen it with my work and with others.
One person interprets it a certain way, another person the opposite
way, it just depends on what perspective you're viewing it from.
So how did I get to where I am now?
As a child I would annually attend the Shearwater International Air Show with my Dad. Packing my little 35mm mechanical point and click camera, I would burn through many rolls of film during the day, only to discover after processing, that most of the shots turned out horribly. ..MORE
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Sure there were a few good photos of huge aircraft on static
display, but roll after roll would end up being the same general shot
of the airfield with a tiny airplane-shaped dot in the sky. They
seemed so close in real life but so vary far away in my photos. After
several years of similar results, I remained undeterred in my air show
One year as the airshow drew close my uncle Peter offered to lend me his camera in hopes that I might get some better shots. It turned out to be a Pentax K-1000. This is a fully manual, mechanical, 35mm camera film camera that he used with a 70-200mm lens. We ran through the basics of using it to the point where I could make a relatively well exposed and focused picture. That year I took it to the airshow and was blown away when I saw the massive leap in quality and possibilities that this camera offered over the point and click. Instead of getting a few good photos like I had most years, I got lots of good ones. I was amazed. The next few years saw me borrowing his camera each summer in anticipation of the upcoming air show. Then I took it on a family vacation and found out that I could make (relatively) good photos of things other than airplanes. Each year I would borrow the camera earlier before the air show and return it later, as I was using it more and more for other subject matter. ..MORE
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By the end of high school, Peter had lent it to me indefinitely (thank
you for your generosity) and I was taking it with me everywhere I went
and getting some pretty good shots.
During my time at Sackville High, all students were required to take at least one art class. Begrudgingly I took art in grade 10, and to my surprise, liked it. I proceeded to take art in grade 11 and 12 also. It was my grade 12 art teacher, Dave Drapak, who introduced me to the idea of art school after graduation. Initially I was hesitant but eventually decided to apply to the Nova Scotia College of Art and Design (NSCAD). After a lengthy application that included a large portfolio of work, I was accepted and won an entrance scholarship from the Dartmouth Visual Arts Society to help pay for the first semester. I was fortunate to have such a well respected and influential art school close to where I lived.
I arrived at NSCAD, thinking I knew it all and wanting to be a landscape photographer, like the legendary Ansel Adams. It turns out that I did know a lot more technically than most others in my first year photography classes, but was very far from knowing it all (if you ever can). NSCAD proved to be an indispensable learning experience that greatly moulded and shaped my work and me as a photographer. I learned technical proficiency as well as what photographs meant and how to interpreted them. ..MORE
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It was four long years of late nights,
countless hours developing and printing, many critiques, and lots of
fun. By the time I graduated in 2005, I had discovered documentary
photography and was strongly heading in that direction with my work.
During my time at NSCAD I continued to shoot with several K-1000's,
like Peter had lent me all those years earlier, and a wide assortment
Upon graduation I started Infotography, switched to high quality digital camera gear, and embarked on an ambitious series of documentary projects about the relationship between humans and nature. This work requires lots of time but I still manage to squeeze in some wedding, portrait, commercial, and personal photography. My work has been published several times in magazines and has been successful in competitions. I hope you enjoy the work and find it informative.
|Photography has always had a strong tie to the technology and machinery that make it possible. Cameras (and lenses) take light that reflects off and emanates from things in our three dimensional world and transforms it into a representation on a two dimensional medium, either film or digital sensor.|
|The human eye is a fantastic optical creation. It is able to see detail in bright areas one second and in dark areas the next. It can see objects with varying amounts of contrast and will automatically compensate for any color casts that light may have. Thus far in the development of photographic technology we have yet to figure out how to create a camera and lens that can equal the versatility and quality of the human eye. The best we can do is to strive to mechanically recreate these unique capabilities and learn how to use our current technology to mimic what the eye sees (or what it can not see). ..MORE|
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Selecting the appropriate equipment for your particular photography can be a
daunting task. Often choices are made based on balanced compromises. Things
like portability, optical quality, durability, cost, and convenience play a
major role in the selection of gear. I started out using a Pentax K-1000
because that was what my uncle owned and was generous enough to lend me.
Naturally, I became familiar with this camera and slowly built a full Pentax
K-1000 kit that included several cameras, lenses and other accessories to
make it all work. I used these cameras for many years and learned to
capitalize on their strengths and work around their weaknesses.
In 2006 I made the switch to digital photography and was faced with the decision of what kind of camera system to build. I did extensive research into various brands and formats and after much wavering back and forth, mainly between Canon and Nikon DSLR's, I finally decided to invest in a Canon system. Both had pros and cons and either could have fulfilled my needs, but I do a lot of wide angle work and Canon "full frame" sensors better accommodate a variety of wide angle lenses. ..MORE
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In the end I settled on the Canon 5D camera with good lenses. I judged that
the 5D was about 25% less capable than the better 1Ds Mark II but was a
whopping 60% less expensive. It seemed like a good trade off. In hind sight
I am very pleased with my 5D's. They are great cameras that have
revolutionized my photography. My main problem with them is occasional
horizontal banding that appears under certain conditions and settings.
Otherwise they are amazing, a real joy to use. I would have liked them to be
weather sealed because I work mostly outdoors but even if I wreck one in the
rain, I can buy a new one and still have spent less on the two than I would
have on a 1Ds Mark II that has weather sealing.
I believe that the gear you use does not really matter. It does not create great photographs on its own, it is you, the photographer, who does. As Beethovan could make great music on any piano, so too can a good photographer make great photos on any camera. I include a list of my gear primarily for the benefit of those who are in the difficult research phase of gear selection, just so they can see what I use and what I am able to produce with it. ..MORE
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For that reason I present my current kit:
Cameras: Canon EOS 5D x2 (with one battery grip), Sandisk Extreme III 4GB CF cards x10, Canon and Impact batteries x18.
Lenses: Canon 16-35mm f2.8L, Canon 24-70mm f2.8L, Canon 70-200mm f2.8L IS, Canon 400mm f5.6L, Canon 100mm f2.8 macro, Canon 15mm f2.8 fisheye, Canon 50mm f1.4, Canon 24mm f1.4L, Canon 1.4x TC II teleconverter.
Lighting: The Sun, Canon 580EX Speedlites x2, Mini Maglite x2, other flashlights.
Accessories: Hoya UV filters: Super HMC and Super HMC Pro 1 (thin with front thread), Hoya Super Pro 1 thin circular polarizing filters with front thread, Canon infared remote, Canon cable releases.