Award Winning Pet Portrait - The Portrait Masters

Well it’s the season again, every year I enter images for judging by my peers to help me learn, and inspire me to grow and get more skilled. This past July I entered the Awards & Accreditation hosted by Sue Bryce Education. Images are reviewed by a panel of 5 judges and scoring is based on a combination of: expression, connection, styling, composition, posing, lighting, technique & presentation, post-production, focus, and storytelling.

Last year I sat on pins and needles waiting for my results, and this year I just ‘let it go’ and today I happened to go through the awards and accreditation results and I PLACED in a SILVER! You can find the gallery of portrait winners here > https://suebryceeducation.com/award-galleries/ and I submitted in the pet category. I seriously screamed and jumped up when I saw I place in the Silver.. with some amazing photographers at my side. I am so proud and honestly AMAZED to see my name in the list of winners… I may be celebrating for a few days!

Here is my winning SILVER submission along with the other 2 that won at BRONZE level.

Honestly, sill feeling super excited. Wow.

Pet Sitting, Puppy Parks and Portraits

My girlfriend is pet sitting this weekend, It’s the first time having a dog in the house since her’s crossed the rainbow bridge a few months back. We chatted about how weird it might be with a dog in the house and maybe it push her over the edge into looking for a new family member. She used to work with rescue organizations around the island and let it slip, they had already started looking. After us chatting a bit, I mentioned I would love to work outdoors with new dogs to trial a new lens I had. I am always loving the soft backgrounds so I was hoping to capture that. The biggest challenge was where to shoot, so I picked a dog park. Now, to be fair, that could have been bad news, considering there is only 1 fully enclosed dog park in Duncan, and bringing a new dog into that environment, along with equipment, oh and my own puppy to have a play day may have been a bad idea. So we booked for 330 slot, and when I arrived the park was very quiet which was perfect…. Tabitha (the pupper), Bonnie and Michael showed up just a few seconds later, and after a little social time, we got down to business.

The weather was just right, with some cloud cover, so we got to work, and Tabitha nailed it. Of course her handler (Bonnie) having worked with me before knew exactly what to do and oh yes … TREATS! ( I don’t suggest bringing too many treats into a dog park you basically become a treat beacon for everyone.)

So we worked for a little while and a few more dogs came in, but we had the chance to capture these images below of Tabitha, who’s parents have no idea this session happened so SURPRISE Michael and Michelle Sansregret! Your dog is a superstar.

Summer Time, Summer Time!

Summer Time Session Tips

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Ah Summer time, a great setting for some fun photos of you and your loved ones in the great outdoors. Like any season there are some suggestions to keep in mind when going out for a session.

1.       Wear sunscreen. If you are going to be out in the sun for a long period of time, especially with children, sunscreen is a must. It can however also make your skin look quite shiny. If possible apply makeup that has built-in sunscreen otherwise apply some powered concealer to spots that look especially oily.

2.       You will ‘glow’. Unless it's a cool day, you're probably going to sweat. Bring along some tissues for dabbing and your concealer powder for touch ups.   

3.       Bugs.  A portrait setting in the woods can be romantic and beautiful, and it could also mean swatting away flies and mosquitos.  Ugh.  So apply or bring a little bug repellent just in case. 

4.       Water. I can guarantee that posing for portraits can be a bit of a workout.  Trust me on this one, but if you schedule a summer session, you may get over heated.  Make sure you bring lots of water and drink up often.

5.       Makeup.  To stay looking fresh with that sun kissed look, avoid over doing your r makeup application.  In this case less is best.  (of course do some trial runs before your session day)

6.       Clothing is not optional. Make sure that what you wear to your session is thought out, you want to be comfortable.  Don’t’ wear anything that is to constricting, or too warm.  Choose clothing that is comfortable and fits your body shape. A quick chat with your photographer may give you some ideas as well with styling.

7.       Choose your time of day. I am sure you have seen those beautiful back lit summer portraits that make you swoon.  Images like that are well thought out with the time of day, so plan your shoot early in the morning or just before the sun sets.

Creative Inspiration

My friend Kendall is an artist, model and very sensitive person. She has been sketching since I met her and in the last few years she has been creating these sketches. Each one makes you stop to stare at it, with their colors and sadness that oozes out of them.

Kendall’s images and a talk by another Canadian photographer, Kelly Robitaille inspired me to create my own wide eyed sad doll. I mean I loved my sad clown’s so I knew that a sad doll would be just as epic for me. I have been trying to figure out a style to work with that allow’s me to break out of my ‘brand’ and give me freedom to just goof around. This was one of those times and I just loved it!

I know it is a bit freaky, and out there but is that not what art is? To push boundaries, and allow for creativity to come forth?

Judged by your peers

Awards and Accreditations

This year I entered into the Sue Bryce Accreditation ans awards to push myself and grow. I entered 15 images and 14 of them placed with Bronze placings and these are my top 4 images. I am very proud of myself for just jumping in and putting myself out there. Thank you to the models who stepped in front of my lens to create some magic.

My Why

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Have you ever wondered what stokes a photographer’s passion?  Wonder why they do it?  Well here are a few of MY reasons why..

  1. Photography changes how you see things. I am constantly noticing colors, textures, people, and light in a way most people don’t. It’s a way to capture those things for others to see.

  2. You pay attention. Everything you see is something you can shoot with some creative lighting, or posing. Even the most mundane can become beautiful when you photograph it in a creative way.

  3. It's my creative outlet. Every photo I take I get the chance to put a little bit of who I am into each image.  I particularly love shooting people in a way they don’t see themselves and I can show them a different perspective.

  4. It's a challenge. There is always something new to explore, something new to learn and even and a new way to work with the same subject and create something different! It’s never the same way twice and it never gets boring.

  5. PEOPLE. I love working with people, the connection and friendships I make from a session is something I am grateful for every day.  

 

Every photographer has a different WHY, and this list changes a little bit as I grow and learn and make more connections, but right now, this these are some of my Why’s.

Looking back at 2018

2018, what can I say, it was not quite what I expected but it is what I needed.

It was the year I launched my new website, my new brand, and started taking myself serious. The year I wanted to dedicate to service with my photography. I was blessed with moments of amazing connections and strong women going through so many changes. Women who bravely stepped in front of my lens and came away changed by the experience of my sessions. I started working with Business Branding and expanded into Video production. It was such a full year but it was also the year I had to say no to alot of things and take so much more time for myself to rest more, have more quiet time, and try to get beyond feeling guilty for it all. The truth is this year was a big year for me, celebrating my mid century mark, my first big family trip to Alaska, and fulfilling a dream to attend a Conference by Brooke Shaden. So for 2019, I hope to connect with more amazing people and create some wonderful memories and images while still balancing life. Cheers 2019, I am ready.



Hi, I'm Bobby.

2018 was my year, I turned 50, I went on my first cruise and I attended my first photography conference out of town.. in Joshua Tree California. I loved it. I had the opportunity to shoot a few different models and I met and shot (very briefly) Bobby Jamal Pitts who was modelling with a small group of very talented photogs. They had him posing and moving and covered in fabric and flapping fabric to catch the wind. At one point he was covered head to toe in this white fabric and the wind picked up and took it off his face to reveal this expression of peace and groundedness. So, I screwed up my courage and ran over to ask if I could intrude and take a few shots, I already knew the look I wanted. I wrapped him and asked him to settle into a more feminine expression and pose and this is what we got. I truly wanted to create something different with the image, a feeling of a painting. Hope you enjoy. Please head over to Bobby’s page and check out his other works. IG is https://www.instagram.com/iamjamalpitts