One of the most incredible photo opportunities I ever encountered was that on top of one of Canada’s tallest condominium buildings, Great Gulf’s One Bloor East. It was a mission that I will never forget and one that had significant risk. It was one of those defining moments and decisions I’ve ever made. One that propelled me into this style of photography. Some of my best shots ever taken were taken atop this building. I was lucky enough to have one of these shots featured on Peter McKinnon’s Edit My Shots episodes.
We The North
Over the past month I’ve been following the NBA Finals. Living beside Scotiabank Arena, it was hard not be be a part of all that action. I don’t usually shoot crowds or anywhere where they is a ton of people all at once - that was definitely new to me. It was pretty surreal being in the middle of excited fans cheering on our team. It wasn’t easy finding the best spot to capture all the action and individual fan reactions as they watched in Jurassic Park. From rooftops to street level it was a challenge. I decided to focus of two types of shots - wide shots of the crowds, and ground level shots of fan reactions. The night of the big Game 7 win was one I will never forget. Never in my life have I encountered that many people in ever single street of downtown. Smoke grenades, signs, fireworks, people standing on any and every surface possible, standing on buses - it was a night for the record books. If that wasn’t enough the Raptors street parade was just as epic. I stood street side for over 4 hours as the buses passed trying to get the best shots I could. I think I did pretty well for my first time at this kind of photography.
For the longest time, I’d always shy away from getting out my camera when it rained. I’m very protective of my camera gear. I thought to myself, they were built to handle this! So, I recently had a change of heart. I’ve always admired street shots, but it was very much so out of my comfort zone. After having spend hours with my friend Paul (@TO_Shots) out in the cold rainy Sunday weather I found I got some really awesome shots! I think it was a lesson of mind over matter - as silly as that may seem. When you want to try something, do it. I’m happy enough with my shots that I now want to shoot more shots on the street.
Phoenix + Neon Demon
I recently had the opportunity to shoot at the very popular Neon Demon Studio. What an incredible experience! As a photographer, I’m always looking for something different to shoot - a new environment. Shooting neon is very different from all other lighting conditions in which I was previously used to - natural light. Neon Demon has some incredible and rare vintage neon signs. Every sign and vignette is placed so that no matter the angle, you always capture an interesting hue in frame. Phoenix and I have shot together many times, and this was a first for both of us. The man needs no introduction - he always owns the camera. Pair that with a snake (Dior) in the mix, and you get shots like these! Dior was a trooper during the shoot - literally captivated with the lights as much as we were! lol. Editing these shots took a fair bit of time. You aren’t working with one temperature or colour. You are working with many. I took the time to own several colours in each frame. I hope you enjoy them! And while you are at it, check out Neon Demon Studio :)