Mi'kmaq warrior and dancer, Danny Boy Stephens, takes a moment to reflect on the shores of the Great Slave Lake, Northwest Territories, Canada. Yellowknife, NT (2010)
From a photoshoot at about 9PM this evening, on location and - as per usual when shooting with Tiffany - it was damn cold. 4 degrees with a stiff winds. But that didn't stop both Tiffany - a Yellowknife-based actor - and James, a multi-talented MMA fighter (and former Olympic cultural performer) from endearing my whims and giving me general awesomeness.I have to say...not many models would should up on location and bring their own giant trampoline with them, but we make models different up here. Thanks, Tiffany!Huge thanks to my assistant, Chris....who also shot a lot of behind-the-scenes on this shoot (some of which I hope to put up in the coming days).Models: Tiffany Ayalikand James WilliamsAssistant: Christopher GattoThanks to other people that made this shoot possible, including Bradley Koswan, Catharine Allooloo, and Tim Bailey Edwards
6:00AM on a February morning with Janey Arruda, a Napili-based hula dancer.Getting this shot was as challenging - if not more challenging - than shooting in -40C conditions. The wind gusts coming off the island this morning were intense, and behind-the-scenes here is Janey's husband, gripping on to my Lastolite softbox with two hands, preventing it from becoming a distant memory in the Pacific.It felt great to get out on a Hawaii creative shoot!
Sunset and 12-degree water combine for magic with the incredibly brave Inuit model, Tiffany Ayalik. Yellowknife, NT (2010)
My only desired characteristic for my talent for this spring's southern Alberta workshop was "unique", and unique we got. Meet Talyn Stone, who was more than we could have hoped for. Photographed on a back country road outside Airdrie, Alberta.
What happens when you get a woman - due in five day's time - who is not into typical "cutesy" maternity photos? Perhaps one of the most quintessentially "northern" expecting scenes I've photographed.
Examining the juxtaposition of a dancer's dreams against the cold, harsh challenges they face. Yellowknife, NT (2011)
Even hardcore punk can be pretty. Nathan "Ramone" Wilson against a dramatic Yellowknife sky. Yellowknife, NT (2010)
Early morning sunrise on the shores of Bavaro Beach, Punta Cana. Punta Cana, Dominican Republic (2011)
The Sub-Arctic Butterfly introduces her young butterfly, Jade, to the world. Yellowknife, NT (2010)
Arguably the two biggest stars of Canada's north - Juno-award winning artist Leela Gilday and the mighty polar bear - sharing a moment.
Life, and bringing forth life. Northern earth mother-to-be, Nicky, creates.
Can grittier images still have beauty? A creative take on a bank robber theme.
Jaret is a real-life angel, selfishly donating his time to help a cancer victim who he did not previously know. Yellowknife, NT (2011)
A Mad Men-meets-Good Houskeeeping play on the traditional family photo.
A butterfly emerges from the Northern landscape, bursting into summer.
The great Canadian Shield, personified as woman. Yellowknife, NT (2011)
As much as I loved the results of the winter shoot I did with Danny Boy Stephens (see the image I posted several days back), our summer session, which started at 4:30AM on the tip of N'Dilo, Northwest Territories to catch the perfect morning light, ended up being perhaps my all-time favourite session. Although I've posted a number of images from this session in the past, there are still literally dozens, like this one, that I've never posted or shown. It was just one of those sessions where everything came together. The location, the light, the talent (Danny was awesome) and the collaborative process was kicking. Special thanks to my former assistant Andrea Nilson for helping me out at that ungodly hour.
Another image of one of the last of his kind. Yukon trapper Roch Boivin.
A Canadian Ranger, operating in the High Arctic (on Ward Hunt Island, northwest of Alert) in tandem with regular Canadian Forces, seen in the background. The Rangers are considered the "eyes and ears" of the Arctic and I have an incredible amount of respect for the work they do. This was photographed on assignment for Above&Beyond magazine, covering the Canadian Forces "Operation Nunalivut" in 2010.
We photographers always seem to show the end result: the ever-happy, so-peaceful, sleeping-baby shots. Here, the reality of a newborn session... :-) http://www.davebrosha.com/
Nice and light. Studio, 2012.
Aboriginal model Ruthanne Young, in studio.
From an early morning photoshoot in the still rather chill waters of Great Slave Lake. Bethany Anne - you're a rock star. Chris, thanks for being a great "Light Boy".
Whenever I do a photo session, I don't always know the direction a photoshoot will go. It's usually the matter of starting, but then hunting for that right angle. The right light. The right expression. Essentially, for the right capture that conveys a mood, or ultimately "connects" with me. I loved the mood in this one. Nicole Krivan, the model here, is excellent at expressions, and even though she has one of the nicest smiles I've seen - her eyes are the star here, speaking powerful words. Make-up by the always talented Nicole Garbutt. Lighting info: single Elinchrom studio head modified by an Elinchrom Rotalux softbox almost right overhead (fill light provided by a silver reflector slightly below her shoulder.
"The Start of Time" From a summer wedding in Ottawa, Ontario. We actually left in the middle of - and delayed - dinner - to head out of the reception last night for some sundown shots. The sky wasn't overly colourful, but what it lacked in colour in made up for in sheer drama. Technical info for photogeeks: ISO 1600, F/11, 1/160-second exposure. Single, unmodified light (Canon 580ex flash) held to my right by friend Geoff.
Playing with some backlight - this was photographed in the woods surrounding an ancient cemetery.
6AM outside Yellowknife, Northwest Territories. A great team pulled this one together: Model - Danielle Mager Bubbles - straight from France, the team behind ebullitions.fr Assistants: Susan Rohac and Paco Gréau
This was a fun challenge: to photograph an artistic black-and-white "studio" style portrait of a horse...without a studio. To do this, I first tried to find a place on the stable grounds that was as shaded as possible (there was fairly bright sun during this portion of the photoshoot). I then choose a combination of aperture/shutter speed that pretty much overpowered whatever ambient light was left, giving me essentially a dark frame before I re-introduced light. Finally, I used three Canon speedlites on the horse, Risk, to then light him up. Finally, in Lightroom I had to burn out a couple of spots in the photo that weren't completely black and then convert it to black and white. Model: Risk Owner: Suzanne Benoit Assistant: Kelly St-Pierre
Another photo of Suzanne and Risk, photographed yesterday in Ohio, Antigonish County, Nova Scotia. This might be one of my personal favourite portraits that I've taken in 2012. The sky went moody right at the perfect time in our photoshoot. Once again, huge thanks to Kelly St-Pierre for the assistance on the shoot. Lighting: three Canon EX flashes on a Lasolite-McNally tri-stand, positioned about 45-degrees to my right.
Alright - a complete departure for me in terms of a creative shoot. We tried a lot of things this afternoon, but I wanted to try something a little more creepy...a la the classic psychological horror flick, Flowers In The Arctic. Nicole Krivan - the model here - is about as far from creepy as one could find in a model, but I thought she - as all good models can do - did g reat to push herself to my request. Technically, this was photographed by using a slow shutter speed and "zooming" out while the shutter was open. The flash (a Canon 580EX, off-camera, modified by a Lasolite Ezybox softbox) "froze" her sharp.
Just another northern girl working in the woods.
More from a creative photoshoot with Nicole Krivan. Photographed in my very glamorous backyard shed. The cobwebs are real. Thanks to Christopher Gatto and Tara Marchiori for their help on this photoshoot. 6-light set-up.
Model: Nicole Krivan Assistant: Christopher Gatto, Tara Marchiori
A great sky and a great face. Yellowknife, Northwest Territories this evening at about 8:00PM. Portrait of Lara Savinainen-Mountain Assistant: Susan Rohac Lighting info: this was light by an Elinchrom studio head and a Rotalux softbox (located about 12 inches from her face, to my right).
Wekweeti, Northwest Territories. December, 2012.
Nigerian-born, English-raised, transplanted Northern Canadian girl (and brand new mother), Inemesit Graham.
24 hours ago I was editing sunset photos. My weeks are random. From a creative shoot this evening at the studio.... Model: Mindy Frost Make-up artist: Nicole Garbutt
"Autumn Was A Cruel Cloak" A production still from tonight's filming; the 2nd day of production on a great new video project I'm working on with Alexander Legaree and my favourite Sub-Arctic Butterfly, Tiffany Ayalik. Great mood out there tonight - even though it feels like winter is just around the corner.
Model: Lara Savinainen-Mountain Assistant: Susan Rohac Lighting/technical info: ISO 100, F/14, 1/100-sec exposure. Photographed on a moody, windy night with an Elinchrom studio light modified by an Elinchrom Rotalux softbox, which is so close to Lara it's almost touching her.
Part of my "Territory" series featuring Tiffany Ayalik. Make-up artist/styling: Natacha Saravanja — in Yellowknife.
Photographed pre-dawn at approximately 4:30AM on the tip of N'Dilo, Northwest Territories, this features Mi'kmaq dancer Danny Boy Stephens.
From a portrait session today in Yellowknife's famous Old Town, with the father of one of the best families I know. Personality Elias Saravanja.
Yellowknife mechanic and personality, Elias Saravanja.
"A Song For Winter" Aboriginal dancer Danny Boy Stephens. Part of my "Fire and Ice" series. Vee Lake, Northwest Territories.
Inuit woman - Pangnirtung, Nunavut in the Canadian Arctic.
Creative session with the incredible Erin Freeland Ballantyne (model) and Nicole Garbutt Makeup Artistry.
Model: Erin Freeland Ballantyne Make-up: Nicole Garbutt
Pow-wow dancer Danny Boy Stephens; photographed on Vee Lake, Northwest Territories.
In support. #idlenomore
Models: Melissa Pettes-Brockington and Trevor Brockington Make-up: Melissa Pettes-Brockington
I just finished up what's definitely my final creative shoot of 2012 on a balmy -28C, and got one of my favourite fashion/creative images of the year. It's always a production trying to shoot in these temperature, but it's these temperatures so often in Yellowknife that we wouldn't get any shooting done if we let the cold stop us. But that said, gear doesn't work very good in the extreme cold, and you're basically limited to photographing in 5 minute increments if you have any sense of decency as a photographer (for fear of freezing your model!) Huge thanks to the team on this one: Model: Elora Braden Make-up artist/hair: Natacha Saravanja Assistant: Susan Rohac
The next time you're cold, just remember...she's colder (and slightly "off"...in a good way). "The Ice Butterfly" Model: Tiffany Ayalik Make-up: Nicole Garbutt Assistants: Anne Bolduc, Amy O'Connor, Andrea Nilson .
Danny Boy Stephens, Yellowknife, NT. Assisted by Andrea Nilson.
The 9th month of pregnancy, in studio. Yellowknife, NT. 2012.
...what happens when a family of fun, world travelers comes into the studio over the holidays for a "non-traditional" family portrait.
As the windchill hits close to -50C here today in Yellowknife, I was reminded of one of my colder assignments, spending a week close to the North Pole (well, as close as you can get to the North Pole while standing on actual North American ground). This portrait of CBC reporter Levon Sevunts was photographed on Ward Hunt Island, which is located north of the Canadian military base of Alert - and stands as the launching point for many of the polar expeditions.
"You Can't Take The North Out Of The Girl" From a portrait session at the very end of December with the multi-talented Yellowknife-born, Elora Braden - now one of the new hosts of Sportfishing Adventures TV on Wild TV. Temperature: -28C Make-up artist and hair stylist: Natacha Saravanja Photographer's Assistant: Susan Rohac
"Dene Light" I spent the afternoon bouncing around Yellowknife and surrounding area photographing one of the most beautiful models I've yet photographed - Dene elder Mary Louise Drygeese. Temperature: -29C Photo assistant: Christopher Gatto Lighting info: for this, I used both the natural backlight from the sun balanced by a single Elinchrom studio light, located to my right and about 7-8 feet from her, modified by an Elonchrom Rotalux softbox. ISO 200 F/11 1/200-second exposure.
First, let me put it on the record that I'm not a sadist. I'm pretty sure yesterday morning was the coldest day of the year here in Yellowknife - with wind chill, we were looking at -51C. I often book my shoots weeks or months in advance, and you never really know what you're going to end up with on the day of the shoot in terms of conditions. So you usually just go with it. Still, yesterday was cold to the point that I phoned my friend Nicole, the model here, to try to talk her out of shooting. But like a true northern girl, she simply said "cold's cold....if it was 15 degrees warmer, I'd still be cold". So yesterday was arguably my "coldest" conceptual shoot, and I have to say the conditions were perfect. There was a bit of an ice fog in the air yesterday and the hoar frost that's cloaked our trees over the past week made for an incredible backdrop. Thank you Nicole. This is a rare natural light photo for me (I cracked out the lights later in the shoot): sometimes what's there, naturally, just works the best. ISO 400, f4.5, 1/500-sec exposure. Canon 70-200MM lens @108MM.
Another from my photoshoot yesterday with friend Nicole Craig, photographed on a day that started with a -51C windchill (-41C without). I know I always post these temperatures, and although they don't mean anything to the overall "art" of an image, I mainly post them as kudos to the people that I'm lucky to work with: I've been blessed to work with some amazing talent over the past number of years here in Canada that will "do what it takes" to get the image. Real pros. And I thank them, because my part is often the easiest...you don't see it, but I've got down-filled snow pants and a parka on on the other side of the camera. Model: Nicole Craig Make-up artistry: Nicole Garbutt Makeup Artistry
"Grace Under Light" Model: Elora Braden Assistant: Susan Rohac Styling: Natacha Saravanja
Portrait of Yellowknife skater, Nathan Wilson.
Photographed from the Rosedale suspension bridge along the Hoodoo Trail in Southern Alberta. ISO 320, f11, 1/125-second exposure. Used a 3-stop GND filter on this image to hold back the sky.
"Her Northern Elegance" Former gymnast, Holly Vassallo. It was a "mild" -15C this morning, and Holly put in about an hour outside, total, to let me do my thing....thank you, Holly. Assistant: Susan Rohac Yellowknife, NT. Lighting info: single Elinchrom 250 studio head, modified by a Rotalux Octabox on a boom arm/c-stand, located to my left at about a 45-degree angle.
Otherwise known as "what it's all about..." Maui, Hawaii.
"The Swamp Princess" Model: Tiffany Ayalik Location: Yellowknife, Northwest Territories Assistant: Sari Wouters
Another from today's creative studio session with Inemesit Essien Graham. Probably one of my favourite studio images to date - I hope you like.
Early spring maternity session (and it's not nearly as warm as the light would indicate). Henna art by Paco Gréau. Model: Brigitte Genois
Huge thanks to the team on this one: Model: Elora Braden Make-up artist/hair: Natacha Saravanja Assistant: Susan Rohac Focal Length 85mm Shutter Speed 1/160 sec Aperture f/3.2 ISO/Film 100 Lighting: single Elinchrom 250 Studio head, modified by an Elinchrom Rotalux softbox.
We had this idea of doing an over-the-top spoof of a Hollywood starlet...perhaps from the 40s. Which Tiffany killed, as per usual. Make-up and styling by the talented Natacha Saravanja. Model: Tiffany Ayalik. Lighting: three speedlite set-up. One main Canon 430EX directly to model's right (45-degrees to me) diffused by a Lasolite Ezybox. Light #2 is to my right and is diffused by a Gary Fong Lightsphere. This is used to just provide a little fill on the green dress and that side of the "set". The third light is a Canon 550EX backlight, hidden in the flowers behind Tiffany, snooted down with gaffer tape to not spill too much on the walls. Just wanted a nice backlight to her arm/shoulder and something to highlight the hairspray.
The studio got a wee bit messy this afternoon. But good times. Definitely more to come from this fun shoot! Models: Nicole Krivan and Morgan Wouters
When you work in a small studio space, you create your own madness.Models: Nicole Krivan and Morgan Wouters.Photographed at Chasing Light Studio & Gallery
"The Silver Souls: Inemesit"This particular shoot featured: - about two hours of make-up by the talents of Nicole Garbutt Makeup Artistry - a lot of silver body paint - one patient model, Inemesit Essien Graham - 30 minutes of photography - 3 lights - dozens of other-worldly poses Watch for a blog post in the next day or two for more from this shoot, including some behind-the-scenes images.
"Red Heart Kaleidoscope"Model/Make-up: Nicole KrivanSet design/assistant: Tara MarchioriPhotographed at Chasing Light Studio & GalleryWhat happens when you edit photographs post-mojito.
Juno-award winning music artist, Leela Gilday, raging against the machine.
Part of my "Silver Souls" series, featuring the talents of Nicole Garbutt Makeup Artistry.Model: Inemesit Essien Graham
"The Stand"Series: The Silver SoulsModel: Inemesit Essien GrahamMake-up/bodypaint: Nicole Garbutt Makeup ArtistryPhotographed at: Chasing Light Studio & Gallery
A post-wedding creative image from the cenotes in southern Mexico.
"Earth Hath No Fury"A new edit from one of my favourite creative shoots; this is part of my "Elemental" series featuring Yellowknife actor, Tiffany Ayalik.Make-up/styling: Natacha SaravanjaWatch for more in the coming week with Tiffany...although she won't be covered in mud in the next one, she will transform herself into a samurai warrior.
"Wind Warrior"Inuit actor, model, and general ass-kicker, Tiffany Ayalik. My biggest problem from this shoot is that Tiffany and James gave me so much gold I don't know where to begin....Technical/lighting details: ISO 100, f/9, 1/200-second exposure. Two light set up: main light camera left, Elinchrom studio head modified by a larger silver beauty dish. Second studio head, camera right for fill bare bulb with a silver reflector.Assisted by Christopher GattoBig thanks to Bradley Koswan, James Williams, Catharine Allooloo for their help on this shoot.
One of the final shots of my shoot the other night with Inuit actor and model, Tiffany Ayalik.Natural light - ISO 1250, f/4.5, 1/160-second exposure.
"APRIL is the cruellest month, breeding Lilacs out of the dead land, mixing Memory and desire, stirring Dull roots with spring rain."Model: Justine OllerheadHair styling: Elizabeth FerrierMake-up artist: Roselle Constantino
A beautiful day this afternoon in downtown Edmonton where I took a time-out from preparations for the next four days of workshops to do a little creative shooting with the incredibly bouncy Kasha J Pinel - one of my models for the Saturday class.
Quick edit of a demo image from today's workshop in Edmonton with the talented Nica Stone.Dress designer: T.M.PasnakAssistants: All my great workshop participants...thanks!
One of the highlights of my shooting career was definitely the morning NHL legend, Gordie Howe, came to my Yellowknife studio for a portrait session. It was one of the most nervous I've been for a session, with little reason: Gordie was one of the most relaxed, engaging, fun people I've ever met. Within moments he set me at ease (it's normally me doing the "setting at ease" in a portrait sitting), and we had a lot of fun over the course of the session.I was saddened to recently read that Gordie's mental health has now deteriorated to the point that he will most likely no longer travel or do speaking engagements. This was photographed just two years ago; I would describe him in the session as quirky but still quick as can be - a master of the one-liner - and he inspired a lot of people on his trip up to Yellowknife.Wishing you, Mr. Howe, the best of luck...and thanks for brightening this photographer's day.
It's midnight; just returned from a late-night maternity session to take advantage of the magic light on pretty much the longest day of the year.Beautiful mother-to-be....beautiful evening.What this image doesn't show is the hundreds - if not thousands - of mosquitos that decided to "assist".Big thanks to my assistant, Susan Rohac, who endeared pretty rough conditions without complaint.
If there can be wisdom evident in just hands alone, it's in the hands of Inuit elder Alice Ayalik. Kugluktuk, Nunavut.
"Exodus"Model: Tiffany AyalikAssistant: Christopher Gatto
A composite demo from last night's shooting session at Peggy's Cove, Nova Scotia, inspired by my colleagues, Von Wong and Aaron Nace, both of whom inspire me daily. . 6 images from about 10 minutes of shooting, composited together in Adobe Photoshop. Big thanks to the many helpers from the Nova Scotia Women's Photographer's Group who helped me pull this one off, as well as to my patient models. Models: Jen Partridge and Martin Broom
Whenever I come to Nova Scotia, I usually stay down at my wife's family's home - a tiny little place called Afton. I was born and raised a northern boy (only moving East later in my teens) so my upbringing was more woods, fishing, and campfires than farms, horses, and ocean. I have to say, though, I really now have the best of both worlds: I live in a place (Yellowknife) where I can experience the magic of the north while still coming back to Nova Scotia once or twice a year to enjoy the quieter country life. This image was photographed in Afton this morning at about 5:40AM with my wife's beautiful niece, Marybeth Boyle. I sometimes think I'm nuts when I make random suggestions to people like "hey, we should get up at 5AM and do a photoshoot..." but every once in a while things work out. Like this sky. It only lasted ten minutes, tops, making it one of the quickest photoshoots I've ever done but all I can say is "WOW". Magic light if I've ever seen it. Big thanks to Marybeth - who I'm sure got out of bed way earlier than me to prep for this - and to my "assistants", Shannon Connors and Jesse Boyle for your great help!
Another one from this morning's early pre-sunrise photoshoot in Afton, Nova Scotia featuring the beautiful Marybeth Boyle. For the photographers in the crowd interested in my lighting set-up on these, this was about as light and portable as you get: one off-camera Canon 600EX flash, modified by a small Ezybox softbox (gelled orange to match the warm morning light), placed almost straight in front of Marybeth and the horse. Assisted by the awesome Jesse Boyle and Shannon Connors.
A demo image from Tuesday's "Mastering Creative Light" workshop in Bayfield, Nova Scotia, which featured the very talented Nova Scotia-based musician, Tom Curry, as one of my models for the event. Big thanks to Tom and all the talent for coming through and working through a big diversity of weather conditions without complaint!
From an in-studio client fitness shoot last evening with the very tough and dedicated Tanya Pilgrim-Pyszak, personal fitness trainer at Yellowknife's The Raquet Club. Big thanks to Tanya's husband, Mieszko, for being a great assistant during the shoot.
New on the blog...scenes from a recent creative client photoshoot here in Yellowknife, NT. Did I mention I have the coolest clients in the world? More at http://blog.davebrosha.com/2013/09/09/50s-family-photoshoot/
Just finished up a great morning of creative shooting with Edmonton fitness model, Noriko Hessmann. I'm down in Edmonton to photograph a wedding this weekend and today I had the option of (A) sleeping in like a normal human being or, (B) setting the alarm for 4:30AM to drive to and set-up for a pre-dawn shoot that meant following around in the dust (but ultimately having fun). Naturally, "B" won out. Massively huge thanks to Noriko and my impromptu Edmonton assistants, Rachel Foley and Jeff Wallace for coming out at the crazy hour and making it happen!
It's been years since Noriko did dance somewhat seriously but she can still show off grace effortlessly. For this, I used a two-light off-camera flash set up. One light to my right, gelled orange (to match the morning light) with a second light to my left and slightly behind Noriko, providing a rim light on her legs.
How to create a gritty sports portrait....using a garbage can and a laminated poster: http://blog.davebrosha.com/2013/10/18/one-light-fitness-madness-not-by-choice/
"Pride of a Nation" This afternoon I had the distinct pleasure of photographing pow wow dancer and free spirit, Lakeisha Goodswimmer, who when she's not dancing across Western Canada on the pow wow circuit is a grade seven student. I have so many images from this shoot that I loved; this one, in particular, I had to share....because how often can you queue a flock of geese to fly in formation right in the perfect spot, at the perfect moment? More to come from this photoshoot - hope you enjoy.
Some studio work with friend, Alison Heslep. Assistant: Susan Rohac Shot at Chasing Light Studio & Gallery. — with Alison Heslep. ISO 50, f/11, 1/160-second exposure. Elinchrom Rotalux softbox slightly to my right and fairly overhead, reflector just out of frame on bottom for fill.
Model: Alison Heslep Assistant: Susan Rohac Photogeek info: ISO 100, f/8, 1/160-second exposure. Elinchrom Rotalux softbox to Alison's right and fairly high up.
One last one this evening from a studio session with Alison. Over the course of our 90-minute shoot we tried several distinct styles; this one was all about colour.... The geek stuff - ISO 50, f/11, 1/160-second exposure with an 85MM f/1,2 fixed lens. Lighting was one Elinchrom light/softbox, straight on and fairly overhead with a piece of foamcore board right out of frame to the bottom reflecting light back up at her. Assisted by: Susan Rohac Photographed at: Chasing Light Studio & Gallery
Model: Alison Heslep Assistant: Susan Rohac Shot at Chasing Light Studio, Yellowknife, NT.
"Dreams" Model: Alison Heslep Assistant: Susan Rohac Photographed at Chasing Light Studio & Gallery
This morning I had the pleasure of photographing Arctic beauty and long-time northern translator, Suzie Napayok (of Tusaajiit Translations) in an immaculate Inuvialiut parka created by a master (Lena Wolki from Sachs Harbour, Northwest Territories in the High Arctic). Lena's in her early 80s and still travels the world teaching her craft of sewing.
Nunavut-born Suzie Napayok, wearing an immaculate Inuvialiut parka created by a master (Lena Wolki from Sachs Harbour, Northwest Territories).
"The City She Loves Me" At least I have her love/ The city she loves me - "Under The Bridge" / Red Hot Chili Peppers From a fun (and chilly) photoshoot this evening in downtown Calgary at the beautiful Peace Bridge with the super Jaquie Nickoriuk, assisted by the great talents of Calgary photographer Neil Zeller Photography. ISO1600, f/11, 4-second exposure. -10C (Jaquie is a rockstar).
So....we kind of decided to mosh instead of watching TV tonight. You know, regular Tuesday stuff.
In the New Year I'll be launching a new ebook through my publisher, oopoomoo, that will chronicle one of my longest-running (and most personal) projects to date - a series of portraits of men and women and their "ink" that I've been capturing for close to three years now. People get tattoos for a variety of reasons but one thing that I've found consistent across all the subjects that I've photographed is that it's one of the most personal and rewarding things that they've done (going through the process of choosing what to put on their bodies). For some, it's purely aesthetic. In the words of one of my recent subjects, "I just like gothic pretty-looking sh*t". For others, their tattoo represents something in their life that they want to carry with them in art form, on their bodies, forever. I photographed this image this morning as part of this project, and it's without a doubt one of the most personal tattoos I've seen. My subject, Sadetlo, recently had a likeness of her nephew put on her arm. Her family lost her beautiful nephew this summer in a tragic accident. I felt in the moment like this is one of the most important portraits I've photographed. To follow along on my progress leading up to the book's launch - a book that will more be about the personal stories of my subjects rather than any sort of photography "how-to", stay tuned to both http://www.oopoomoo.com/ and my Facebook page as I continue to post some of the stories I've photographed along with some fabulous ink. I was even inspired over the life of this project to get my own ink - an experience that I found hugely rewarding.
A portrait of Inuit hunter, Devon Allooloo. Yellowknife, NT. 2013.
"Holding The Fort" The incredible Mr. Lambert, a Fort Vermilion, Alberta elder holding a saddle hand-stitched by his wife, Vivian. Photographed at the Old Bay House in my hometown as part of a workshop I held there back in October.
"The Freedom of Flight" Mi'kmaq dancer (and former US Marine Danny Boy Stephens). N'Dilo, Northwest Territories.
Pow wow dancer and free spirit, Lakeisha Goodswimmer, who when she's not dancing across Western Canada on the pow wow circuit is a grade seven student. Outside Grande Prairie, Alberta.
An image from a photoshoot this morning as part of my upcoming "Framed Ink" ebook which features a series of portraits I've taken over the past three years celebrating the art form of ink and the personal stories behind the ink (watch in the coming week as I post regular blogs leading up to the launch of this ebook over on my publisher's blog at http://www.oopoomoo.com/blog/ ). This is Robyn, whose elaborate back tattoo has great meaning to her. The scene on her back was inspired from Robyn's reading of a series of stories by Canadian author Charles de Lint, that featured "these two crows, and these crows were around from the time the Creator made the earth. They find the world so exciting and exhilarating but the only way that they can handle the idea of immortality and being around since the beginning of time is to to live every single day like it's their first day on Earth....I (personally) was living every single day like it was my last day on Earth. If you do that, you make unwise choices....but if you live every day like it's your first day on Earth then everything's new and exciting and to be explored...and that's a better way to live." As I was setting up for this shoot the most incredible thing happened: it was almost as if nature was responding to the photoshoot...a giant flock of ravens took to the skies - around 25 or 30 of them - and they circled around the entire time we were photographing (which was a very brief 15 minutes seeing that Robyn's...well, bare....and it was a balmy -42C windchill.
More from my "Warrior: Fire and Ice" series featuring Mi'kmaq dancer, Danny Boy Stephens.
Oscar - a country boy through and through. Photographed outside Whitehorse, Yukon in the Canadian north.
"I got my tattoo in memory of my third child, who passed away. He was known as the “Little Viking” around town – he put up quite the fight as he was going through his surgeries. It’s in memory of him. Jonas was born with a congenital heart disease. Basically, he had one side of his heart that didn’t form – so only one pump. There are surgeries they can do to make it work so he went through some surgeries when he was a baby. When he was just about three he went in for the next round of surgeries; his heart was so weak that when he did the one surgery his heart basically fell apart. They actually removed his heart…and he was the first child in medical history they’ve actually done that to. So he went on the Berlin Heart – which is a mechanical heart – as the first child in the world who ever had his heart removed completely (the mechanical heart was doing all the work). He was on the Berlin for ten weeks while we hoped and prayed for a transplant. Unfortunately, during those ten weeks….any time you do anything for the first time you never really know what the outcomes are. His other organs started shutting down so at ten weeks he fought what he could do and his other organs were shutting down so we made the decision, as a family, that that was Jonas’ time. He missed his third birthday by five days. This isn’t my first tattoo. My first tattoo, it took me two years to figure out what I wanted and another year to get exactly what I wanted done. This one here was literally an hour. It was right. I went to my uncles 60th birthday party in Manitoba…I phoned up this guy who was fully booked for 4 months but he rearranged his schedule and went in and got it done. It’s important—to have something all the time to remember Jonas by. We have our memories, but for me its important to have this tattoo, to remember my son – this awesome little guy – and he only made it to just about three, and it’s in his memory. I’m proud of it." - Niels Konge --------------- This image, "Little Viking", was photographed (and was one of the hardest things I've shot) as part of my "Framed Ink" project - a collection of portraits spanning three years of various people's tattoos and the stories behind them. This project will be released as an eBook by my publisher, oopoomoo, in early March. Read more at http://www.oopoomoo.com/project/framed-ink/
Portrait of Roch Boivin - realife Yukon trapper - at his Yukon home.
From yesterday's northern James Bond-themed chase scene shot almost literally in my back yard here in Yellowknife at -32C (-44C windchill). This features two brave and crazy models, Christy Climenhaga and one of my assistants, Christopher Gatto...who survived the deepfreeze handily (coffees were on me, without saying). Why? Why not...beat watching TV. Assisted by: Susan Rohac
See more from this session here: http://davebrosha.tumblr.com/post/72458900276/creative-studio-portraits It’s great being busy but one of the things that I find myself continually running into is doing a personal creative session that I’m excited about….but then not having the chance to look at it for months and months and months. So, a resolution for 2014 is to go through some of the literally hundreds of past sessions I’ve done over the past 6 or 7 years and actually look at what I’ve shot. My tastes and shooting style have changed over the years and I’m sure I’ll find a few sessions that are cringe-worthy, but I’m hoping that I find a lot of stuff in my archive that I’ve never really “seen” before. Here’s one session that I had basically forgotten about, shot in early 2013. It features one of my favourite creative/collaborative partners, the multi-talented Inemesit Graham who is a talented artist, woman, and fitness guru. Pretty amazing woman, really. I love working with Inemesit because she is not afraid to just try things….and she has an inherent sense on how to shape her body and limbs into geometric wonder. On this side of the camera, that makes my job easy. Here’s a few shots from our session that day. I hope you enjoy.
This may have been the only time in my shooting career that I've done a creative shoot in the pouring rain with it basically dark. It was way darker, to my eye, that what my camera is recording here (helped along by a high ISO of 2000 and an off-camera flash). This is Karie Holst, who was referred to me as "the best ever" model by one of my former subjects from Yellowknife. It's not the -40C of Yellowknife, but when it's 6 degrees with a cold, whipping wind in a downpour and you don't complain for an hour...pretty great indeed.
More from a day of creative shooting on the streets of Vancouver. This is Kristen Taylor Linkletter, photographed in Gastown. The editing of this was fueled proudly by mojitos. 6-shot composite.
Kristin Linkletter, in Gastown, Vancouver.
A portrait of real-life Yukon cowgirl, Marlene.
Snow Warrior Aboriginal dancer Daniel Stephens, warrior. Photographed on Vee Lake, Yellowknife, Northwest Territories. Join me on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/davebroshaphotography Strobist info: Canon 580 Speedlight lying in the snow behind him, remote triggered by a Pocket Wizard.
Part of my "Framed Ink" project - an eBook detailing people, their ink, and their stories....due out in March, 2014.
Portrait of Nathan Wilson. Most of my favourite portraits come out of shooting for myself - finding subjects and faces that interest me and simply making it happen. I love shooting stuff for clients but there's a definite freedom in just creating for the sake of creating for no other reason than you feel, inside, like you have to.
Inuit actor Pallulaaq Friesen; photographed in her hometown of Rankin Inlet, Nunavut.
A different take on impending motherhood. A six-month pregnant mother, who was looking for something a little different than the standard maternity images.
Master Inuit drum-maker (and amazing friend), Noah Tiktak. Photographed on northwestern Hudson Bay in Rankin Inlet, Nunavut.
From a pre-wedding shoot this early evening of a beautiful bride in Antigua.
A themed shoot at the majestic Union Station in St. Louis, Missouri. Model: Marsha Denlinger
From some creative shooting at the Union Station hotel in St. Louis, Missouri. Models: Dayvion Garnett and Risa Scott.
Model: Chelsea W. Goers Photographed at: After Dark Education in St. Louis, Missouri at the Union Station Hotel.
A portrait of Inuvialuit beauty, Danielle Mager, photographed this evening on Great Slave Lake, Yellowknife, NT.
Danielle Mager by window light. Shot with a Canon 5DMIII with a Canon f/1.2 85MM lens. ISO 1250, f/2.2, 1/125-second exposure.
Danielle, photographed last evening.
Model: Erykah Tam Shot at: Chasing Light Studio & Gallery From a creative studio session last evening.
Model: Erykah Tam More from a creative shoot earlier this week; photographed at Chasing Light Studio & Gallery
A portrait of Yellowknifer, Morgan Wouters, photographed as part of my "Framed Ink" tattoo portrait series. Shot in-studio. Re-edit of an image I posted many moons ago....love occasionally going back to old stuff and seeing if I would approach it with a fresh set of eyes.
A new photo in my "Warrior: Fire and Ice" series with Danny Boy Stephens. Photographed just past 4:30AM on a summer evening on the tip of N'Dilo, Northwest Territories.
More studio portrait work with Littlebear Sanchez, an exceptional personality from Texas.
This is an idea I've had for a while, now - another one of those "do it because you HAVE to do it projects". Model: Danielle Mager This is - of course - a composite, with the main image of Inuvialuit model Danielle shot against the frozen Great Slave Lake. Maybe someday I'll put together a "how to". Assistant: Susan Rohac
In the course of my travels I've had the pleasure/opportunity of photographing a diverse range of subjects. Whenever I travel to a place, I always try to set up at least one portrait session simply for myself, to see what I can capture against an array of different backdrops around our great planet. This image series came out of one of those travels: I was heading to Grande Prairie, Alberta doing a few days of photography workshops in 2013 when I put out a model call for the workshops I was holding. One of the respondents was the mother of pow wow dancer and free spirit, Lakeisha Goodswimmer, who - when she's not dancing across Western Canada on the pow wow circuit - is now a grade eight student. At the end of my workshop days I'm usually pretty exhausted....but nothing wakes me more than having the opportunity to create, especially with such a powerful subject.
"Wearing The Wind" The haunting and beautiful Danielle Mager. One of the things I've set as a goal for myself this year is to try to achieve a really soft lighting style to certain pieces of my work....but one that still has some mood. I feel like I'm making some strides, which I feel mainly has been achieved through playing with the balance of ambient and introduced lighting rather than any one specific type of lighting modifier. Still a long way to go to what I'm after (although he's known for his edgy stuff, check out Joel Grime's recent work) but loving the journey of exploration.
Studio dance and form photoshoot with Yellowknife's Erykah Tam. I've worked with many great talents over the years but I have to say, the control Erykah has over her movements is truly amazing. These were all shot in studio using the Lastolite Hilite background. Love using this system (instead of directly light onto something in the background, like a white paper background), you actually put two lights right in the background, which gives it incredible consistent "pure white" capabilities, as well as beautiful wrap-around light (I love silhouettes, but I also love seeing some detail in my subjects). In any case, great product. Oh, and just discovered something in Lightroom this afternoon that I thought I would share. It's a peeve of mine when you're processing something with pure white and you don't notice that it's not quite white. Sometimes it's just due to monitor calibration, but you upload and then notice parts of an image like this are a goulish grey. If you hold down the alt/option key while moving your highlights slider in lightroom, it will show you if it's pure white or not. Super handy for re-touching the spots that are that ugly grey.
Some studio work with Yellowknife's Alison Heslep. Lighting: one Elinchrom 500BRX w/beauty dish to model right. Toned in Lightroom.
Some recent studio work. Sometimes I'm inspired with an idea and plan out a shoot around that idea. Sometimes my ideas come to me when I'm actually shooting - something strikes and I'll pursue it. And sometimes, the idea hits me when I'm at the editing stage, as was the case with this one. When I saw how perfect her pose was for a "spider" mirror, I had to have some fun.
More in the world of exploring my digital artist side - combining the posings of Erykah Tam (who I've raved about before) with my landscape photography.
About this image: Technical info: ISO 100, 17-40MM lens @ 25MM, F/11, 13-second exposure.
Exploring the beauty within the details of nature. Photographed in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan.
The newest installment of my "Warrior: Fire and Ice" series featuring native pow-wow dancer, Danny Boy Stephens.
Photographed on location at Yellowknife's famous Buffalo Airways - home of the History Channel "Ice Pilots NWT". Model: Inemesit Graham
Tonight I added to my "remarkable experiences" file when I had the pleasure of photographing a session with Dakota spiritual leader and Sundance Chief, Wanbdi Wakita, along with his wife, Pahan Pte San Win. Winnipeg has been a powerful experience for us, overall, and we feel so thankful for the moments we've had so far on this trip, and for the moments yet to come.
"Furthermore" The skies over Afton, Nova Scotia were perfectly moody this evening for a photoshoot with my beautiful niece, MaryBeth Boyle, who gave us great reason to dig my wife's wedding dress out of storage.
More from my photoshoot last week with my niece, MaryBeth Boyle, who is wearing my wife's wedding dress (which despite being worn close to 14 years ago, feels like yesterday). We almost cancelled this shoot due to the rain, but I'm glad we persevered. Camera and lenses got pretty soaked - not to mention the ever-patient MaryBeth - but really, I couldn't have asked for better conditions. Big thanks as well to my nephew, Jesse Boyle, who got equally as wet serving me well as a voice-activated light stand.
A simple portrait of a powerful woman. Pahan Pte San Win, a healer with Dakota, Cree, and Metis ancestry. Winnipeg, Manitoba.
Well, wow, where do I start. First, it was painful getting out of bed this morning. My alarm was set for 4:45AM. I only fell asleep last night at midnight. I debated cancelling. Seriously debated. But I had committed, and I hate backing out on a commitment. Groggy shower. Used a flashlight to find a pair of swimming trunks in the dark. Still brain-fuzzy, looking around the house for various pieces of gear. Leave the house. 6AM, Long Lake. The sky looks promising. Erykah Tam - my subject, Susan Rohac - my assistant, and I struggle down to shore with various pieces of gear. It's 5C. None of us really want to do this. But that's a lie - of course we do. All of us, in the water. Within minutes of setting up the sky turns more magical then I've seen for any creative shoot I've ever done in Yellowknife. And remains that way, through a shifting symphony of colour for close to an hour. All three of us, chest-deep in water. It's freezing. At one point I accidentally submerged my lens in water. I think it's okay but I'm not sure. Strangely, it's warm(ish) in the water. But probably not. We've probably just lost all feeling. We finish and go to shore. Then it hits us, and we're all numb and shivering. Head home. Tubs and showers. All come back to life.
Maybe the most perfect sky my eyes have ever seen. Erykah Tam - you (more) than did it justice. Assisted by: Susan Rohac
The sky, is...as it was. Most incredible morning ever. Air temperature: 5 degrees. Model: Erykah Tam Assistant: Susan Rohac
Another edit from last week's spine-numbing shoot at Long Lake, Yellowknife, featuring the incredible Erykah Tam. Outside air temperature: 5 degrees. Water: damn cold. Sky: absolutely magical. Assistant: Susan Rohac, also chest deep. Photographer: bald shivering dude. Also chest deep.
Creative shoot with a long-time collaborative partner, Nicole Krivan.
I'm one of those people that work some pretty crazy stretches (it's not unusual for me to go 40-50 days without a day off), and then when I do actually have the opportunity for a day off...I usually fill it with more shooting. Especially when I'm on the road. I don't get a lot of satisfaction from sitting around a hotel room. So today was one of those days. Completed a beautiful wedding with a great couple here in Victoria yesterday...start leading a two-day landscape workshop tomorrow...so filled today with shooting (fulfilling that artistic soul). Many images to come from several shoots today, but here's one to start from an early evening shoot with long-time collaborative partner Tiffany Ayalik. She may not have gotten the role in Leonardo DiCaprio's latest film, but it was pretty great happenstance that she, by chance, was in Victoria this week performing in the critically acclaimed "The Rez Sisters" (go see it if you can!) and our calendars matched up. We've been working on a series going back 3 or 4 years called Elemental, personifying the female spirit as different manifestations of landscape. This scene was a perfect fit. Now to switch to my landscape brain. More to come! About this image: ISO 500, f/4, 1/250-second exposure. 35MM f/1.4 prime lens (my new favourite perspective). Light: natural (sometimes what's there is pretty much perfect).
This was a semi-composite image all shot on-location at one of the coolest sets I've come across - the beautiful and medieval-looking Thetis Park in Victoria. As soon as I saw this scene I envisioned something with an elf-in-the-woods, or Game of Thrones feel. I settled for a pre-Halloween creepy portrait (hey, whatever works!). "The Dark Arts" Models: Tiffany Ayalik and Lexy Parks Assistant: Camila Gargantini
"Stand Tall" A new image from my session this year with Littlebear Sanchez, Littlebear Sanchez, a striking Apache from Texas. I hadn't planned on doing this session up as a black-and-white post-processing treatment, but when I got to the editing stage, it just looked more timeless in good old black-and-white. If you're ever looking for amazing black-and-white inspiration, check out the work of Lee Jeffries. I've sung his praise for years, but still with each and every portrait he puts out he stops me in my tracks.
Nunavut-born Suzie Napayok, wearing an immaculate Inuvialiut parka created by a master (Lena Wolki from Sachs Harbour, Northwest Territories).
A new creative portrait from the woods surrounding Fort McMurray. The strength of Nicole (who knows how to use this thing). ISO 100, f.3.5, 1/200-second exposure. Nicole is lit by one off-camera Canon 600EX flash, modified by a small Lastolite Ezybox softbox. I choose a wide open aperture for this one to help isolate Nicole from a somewhat busy background, but one that I wanted to include for the overall story in this image.
The general badassery of Nicole V. in Fort McMurray, Alberta
A little family session fun today here in Yellowknife.
A new image from a summer session with Dakota spiritual leader and Sundance Chief, Wanbdi Wakita. Winnipeg, Manitoba. ISO 100, f/8, 1/125-second exposure. One off-camera studio strobe to Wanbdi's right, modified by an Elinchrom Rotalux softbox.