Sporting Portraits

The University of Winnipeg Wesmen athletics department is savvy enough to know that visuals matter. Recently I went to the downtown campus to produce headshots and portraits of their womens’ soccer team. Their energy and enthusiasm made for a great afternoon, and happily we had enough time to include a fun few shots for each player — it was these shots that stuck with me afterwards and, I think, show the spirit of each individual.

Can you see yourself or your employees in a portrait like this? Let’s talk!

A dream come true

The Dream Factory is a Manitoba organization that has a truly noble cause: helping a dream come true for a child facing a life-threatening illness. I’m not sure there’s much in this world that’s more selfless and noble than helping a young child who’s carrying a burden like that to just be a kid again .

That’s why I was so happy to be asked back by them to photograph the dragon boat fundraising event they held on the Assiniboine River last weekend. Focusing on the people and what it felt like to take part, I hope my pictures can inspire others to support this very worthy cause!

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Eid al Fitr, in photographs

The festival of Eid (or Eid al Fitr) is a joyous occasion in Muslim cultures. It marks the end of a month of fasting and introspection during the period of Ramadan, which is a time of reflecting on the blessings one has and to give to charity. In fact, some Christians may see some parallels between Lent and Ramadan, and Eid and Easter.
Here in Winnipeg, Eid is perhaps most notably marked by a large gathering at the downtown Convention Centre and I was fortunate enough to observe this year’s event at the beginning of June.

Held in a spectacular upstairs room fronted by a floor-to-ceiling window, the cavernous space was bathed in light, and the relatively-small figures of the faithful traced long dark shadows as they walked through the early morning sunlight.
It was hard not to see and feel some spiritual metaphors in a diverse group of people coming together in a brilliant, open space. I was free to discreetly walk about, trying to record the feeling and essence of this upbeat gathering. It was a wonderful time to be a photographer.

My thanks to the Manitoba Islamic Association for their help and of course friends Nilufer Rahman and Dr. Rehman Absulrehman!

The first image made when I arrived - surely a good omen for the day’s photography!

The first image made when I arrived - surely a good omen for the day’s photography!

I don’t like using long lenses, much preferring a ‘normal’ or slight wide angle lens. I want my images to subtly help the viewer feel as though they were in the middle of what was happening. It also requires me to interact with subjects, and be mindful of how I affect them and the overall scene.

I don’t like using long lenses, much preferring a ‘normal’ or slight wide angle lens. I want my images to subtly help the viewer feel as though they were in the middle of what was happening. It also requires me to interact with subjects, and be mindful of how I affect them and the overall scene.

Father and Sons, Eid al Fitr
I could write pages about the glorious light on the morning of this event. It was a sensory feast, with beautiful light and shadow, a dazzling array of clothing and peoples, the fascinating sounds of prayer and the warmth of truly sincere smiles and friendliness.

I could write pages about the glorious light on the morning of this event. It was a sensory feast, with beautiful light and shadow, a dazzling array of clothing and peoples, the fascinating sounds of prayer and the warmth of truly sincere smiles and friendliness.

How to find one face, one person, in a crowd that tells the overall story of so many others? That’s the job of a photojournalist and a photographer.

How to find one face, one person, in a crowd that tells the overall story of so many others? That’s the job of a photojournalist and a photographer.

Father and Son, Eid al Fitr
“I’ve Got Goals”…great shirt, kid.

“I’ve Got Goals”…great shirt, kid.

Prayer Beads, Eid al Fitr
I’d held my camera above my head, in order to get the right perspective on people leaving the event after its conclusion. I liked the lines and overall visual pattern. I didn’t realize until I got home to edit the images hours later that this woman gave a special shout-out to me! Whoever you are, thanks!

I’d held my camera above my head, in order to get the right perspective on people leaving the event after its conclusion. I liked the lines and overall visual pattern. I didn’t realize until I got home to edit the images hours later that this woman gave a special shout-out to me! Whoever you are, thanks!

Stand, Eid al Fitr
Humility, Eid al Fitr
The colours and sheer visual parade was fantastic for a photographer. This dress immediately caught my eye.

The colours and sheer visual parade was fantastic for a photographer. This dress immediately caught my eye.

Duo526

I recently had the pleasure of hearing from the classical music partners who make up Duo526. These passionate, talented artists and educators tour internationally, and have a new album coming out in 2019.

Kerry DuWors and Futaba Niekawa asked if I could help them with some new artist portraits for use with the album, publicity and social media. It was an immediate “yes” from me!

Working over a few hours in the wonderful Aspire Studios in Winnipeg’s Exchange District, we truly collaborated and together crafted images that these two can use to help put forward an image that reflects who they really are: talented, down-to-earth and confident musicians.

Please look up their website, and order their upcoming album! Bonus points if you can find out how the group “Duo526” got its name!

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Canadian Red Cross

The Canadian Red Cross saves lives here at home and across the world - whether it’s here in Canada or in Indonesia (where your help is needed after the latest tsunami), or Yemen (the world’s largest single humanitarian crisis) and elsewhere, the sign of the Red Cross tells people help has arrived.

Last summer, the Red Cross helped evacuate hundreds from Little Grand Rapids and Pauingassi First Nations in northern Manitoba after wildfires burned close to those communities. It was a pleasure to photograph their work, and meeting the people helped from a tough situation. One of those photographs was chosen as one of the top ten images from the past year.

Please check out their website and see if you can help out with an aid project, or volunteer for their work here at home.

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