Leading Ladies Martini Mixer, Valentines Day Edition! [Events]

February 6th was a great evening out with the Leading Ladies of Halifax.  It was a fantastic networking opportunity for all involved, including myself.  Some highlights of the night included photographer Jenn Gregory giving away a boudoir session, the introduction of a fantastic new service called Swapskis and of course, meeting many new and awesome Leading Ladies. 

If you are a Leading Ladies Attendee and you are looking for a new profile pic or Professional Portrait, get in touch!  I offer a 20% discount if you mention Leading Ladies!

 Here's a gallery of the images from the event, click to enlarge, feel free to share but be sure to credit!

Halifax Nocturne 2013 in Photographs

I will be brief, as there are a lot of photos to show. Last night was the sixth annual Nocturne, a series of interactive, outdoor and indoor artwork around downtown Halifax.  Needless to say, it was a great opportunity to get out and get some photos.   Everything from sidewalk chalk artists to circus performers were on display, entertaining and making a lot of people think.  Here is my experience in photos: 

Daily Photo: 18/10/13 - Two Phones [Street]

Technical Information:
Camera: Canon 5D Mark II
Lens: Canon 85mm f/1.8
ISO400, f/6.3 1/1250s
Location: Downtown Halifax
Process: Apple Aperture for RAW processing and Nik Silver Efex Pro 2 for B+W Conversion

Let's face it, sometimes having one smart phone isn't enough.  Technology is so accessible these days that it might just take more than one I/O device to maintain all your communicative efforts.  

It's been an interesting week.  I haven't done much in the way of photo walks or shoots, but I have some stuff in the works coming soon, including a great evening photo walk for Nocturne on Saturday evening (here is last year's post), and a fall photo shoot on Sunday.  Stay tuned!

Leading Ladies Martini Mixer [Events]

It's Thursday Evening, right after a long day at work.  Normally, I'd be heading home to eat a quick supper and get back out the door for my karate class.  But tonight? I have an event to go shoot.  

Arriving in the Press Gang I quickly realize that any fears of overdressing were unfounded.  This place is nice.  I'm glad I didn't just wear my usual biz-cashe work clothes, but opted instead to put on a nice jacket, and even matched my belt and shoes.  I know, that doesn't sound like much but it's a lot for me to think about as far as my own fashion goes.   I gotta draw the line somewhere right?

But what's really on my mind is that the place is dark. I mean, cavernous in some places, but that's the atmosphere at the Press Gang.  I'm going to have to use my flash.  I had anticipated this though, and I bust out my new toy: A piece of foam.  Craft Foam.  The kind you buy at a craft store (Michael's, in my case) for under two dollars.

I had fashioned my foam into a cobra-head shape, and used a velcro strap to attach it to the flash.  The idea was this: Instead of the light originating from the flash directly, I would use the foam as a massive bounce card a foot above the lens mount.  The result?  Easy peasy.  It's on camera flash, without a doubt, but at least it's flattering, soft on-camera flash.

Okay, some quick light tests and away I go.  Setting the flash on E-TTL for most of the evening turned out to be a breeze, as the camera pre-flash allows the camera to automatically set the flash's intensity.  Complicated enough of a description? It really is point and shoot now, but I still have to focus.  Stupid AF Assist seems to be turned off for some reason and I can't figure out how to switch it back on.  Oh well, take a photo and quickly check for focus before the ladies move away!

The ladies themselves are great, very welcoming and easy to get to warm up to the camera.  As I work my way through the crowd, I have to speak very loudly over the voices discussing business opportunities and target markets.  "Have you had your photo taken yet? No? Alright, would you like to?"  Very few refuse, and when they do, I plead with them to "Do it for Menna!".  Menna, of Parlour Room Events and the organizer of the Martini Mixer is most unfortunately, absent.

The evening wears on and eventually, Courney (pictured above) gets up to make a speech and thank everyone for coming.  Now comes the biggest challenge of the day: corralling 75 Leading Ladies to the bar for a group photo.  You know what? I think I had better divide them and take two group photos.

I pack up my things, mingle a little bit, and eventually head out the door at about 7.  Looking back, it was a wonderful evening with lots of exceptional people and a great atmosphere!  I felt a little ridiculous at times with my massive flash attachment, but it made a huge difference in getting controlled, soft light where I wanted it to be. Who said photography accessories had to be expensive?