Dancer in the Mine

This is something I am very proud to show off. It has taken a year or two since I saw this place in photos, and then finally rolling up my sleeves to put a team together to execute. First is my wife as always, who helps me creatively and supports me in the many ways unseen in the final products. Second, came Chinenye who has been my creative partner for many shoots in the last year and finally was Emily, who has been a blessing as she is not only a classically trained ballerina, she is also a fashion designer. 

After months of brainstorming, sometime in February we headed off to find this magical place. Nobody told me it was hidden in a hill somewhere and not that easy to find. Thus, we parked the car and trekked the landscape, and ended calling for help in the middle of the lake as that was the only place where we found a bar of reception. My useless iphone froze within minutes so I was no use. After some second guessing, we finally find this beautiful location and instantly felt that our struggles were worth it. "Il faut la peine", as the french would say. 

We returned to the car, and to our surprise there was a sign that said "Mine".  Although it was a tiny faded sign, it would have helped tremendously if we had saw it in the first place. Then came the horror, the car was parked on ice and despite a half our of creative maneuvering with blankets, we threw in the flag and made our descend to find help. Along the way we found a couple in a car and they gave us a ride to find help. We asked a lady who lived nearby, whom gave us some salt and a shovel, and back we went. However, the tools proved useless and again we found ourselves back down the hill. This time, we stopped by a house and using my terrible french I asked for help. Unfortunately, because of people exploiting this landmark the neighbours are sick of people like us visiting and making a mess, and we were treated unkindly and left us no choice but the find the original lady that helped us down the hill. Good thing is she was there, and she had a truck to tow us out. As we returned in the truck, to our surprise there was a bunch of guys there and they were able to help tow us out and our troubles were over.

So, in preparation for the shoot, we picked out fabric and Emily designed a nice flowly dress just for this occasion. My directions were simple, "bigger". Towards the shoot day, we brought on board a videographer, Romeo.  He was going to film the entire shoot and make a nice bts reel for us. In addition, Emily's brother was going to be the second dancer to add to the interest. However, I lost Steven to sickness, who has been my assistant on my shoots for the last year, which meant I had to pack light. But, I thought we had enough people to make it work. 

The day of the shoot started early and quite smooth, all were on time and schedule was on track. Well all except this Romeo guy, who never showed. Not only did he delay us for an hour, he kept reassuring he would meet us first at the house, then at the Canadian Tire, and finally just at the shoot location. In the end he never showed. "Where art thou, Romeo" - right?

The best part is now we have met this nice lady from our scouting session the first time, so we  brought her some gifts and got to use her driveway to park our car.  We walked up the hill and magical photography of dancing happened.  

*update: These images are also published here: https://www.prolificquarterly.us/single-post/2017/09/13/PQs-Dancers-in-the-Mine

Dissolution

I had a chance recently to work with some very talented people on an art collaboration. This newest photographic project, Dissolution, is an exercise in trying to show the realities of modern romantic relationships using surreal characters. Colour and light play a significant role in the photos, working together to create the stylistic representation within the project; achieved through the work put into the makeup on the models, and the positions of both the models and light sources. The result becomes a sequence of photos that effectively show different scenes between a husband and wife, and the mundane existence they share with each other.

MUA: Alina Sauve
Hair: Kim Carr
Models: Christine Hager & Nathan Primeau (also wrote a description to this project in words)

The Quarry

It is a really long time to wait for pictures you did back in December, but it was for a submission and our work paid off as it recently got published in Elegant Magazine. I just wanted to show off the work as I wait for tear sheets. I also want to thank the uber talented team that help me put this all together. 
Photographer: Van Tran
Assistants: Heidi Green, Steven Liang
Designer: Karissa Besharah
MUA: Chinenye Ifedi
Hair: Amber O'Callaghan
Models: Kayla Peplinskie & Christine Hager

http://www.magcloud.com/browse/issue/1265521

Huldra

I am very happy that my first submission ever was accepted. This was a collaboration with Kass Foulkes and Alina Sauve back in November. I have been waiting a long time to post these images. I am happy to share that it was accepted into Beautivation Magazine for their March issue.

They are on 6 pages in Beautivation Magazine! (78-83)
Link: http://www.magcloud.com/webviewer/1250291

Warrior

Ottawa is full of talent. We have great models, MUAs, stylists, and Chris Banfalvi, a crazy talented artist that makes swords, crowns, chariots and other pieces of work made from metal. His work is currently showcased at the Orange Art Gallery should you want to check out the exhibit. This was a concept shoot for something bigger on the works from our model Mylee Batista and her mom, Ashley. Chinenye (MUA) and myself will both be part of this project with what seems to be a large list of other talented artists. I can't wait for all this to get started.  Thanks to my assistant for this shoot Steven Lian to make these images possible. He is a talented photographer himself.

Amber

Last week, I worked with Amber Erlik (model) and Sara Yousuf (MUA) on some beauty Indian-style looks. Usually, people arrive with make-up and hair finished before the shoot, but this time I had the opportunity to do some video work for Sara and was there for the entire process. As I captured the make-up process, I understood why the "team" was always so friendly with each other already before the shoot. It is this getting ready process that really bonds people, which I happen to miss out most of the time. But now it all makes sense. Anyhow, here are some of favourites. And hopefully, a successful video to follow. Thanks to Pehnawa couture for the clothing and jewellery.