The Seasons of Victoria Beach (Winnipeg Photographers)

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Over the past 4 years I have had the privilege of getting to know Victoria Beach. John, my fiance, is fortunate enough that his grandfather bought a cabin there in 1944 for $600. This cabin was torn down a couple of years ago and replaced with a new, modern and very beautiful cabin.  It is really more of a beach house than a cabin. We both love it there and call it our sanctuary. Most people only come to their cabins in the summer but we go all year round and we love it even more in the winter. Here are some images that I’ve taken in the 4 seasons at Victoria Beach.

SUMMER

Summer is a very busy time at VB.  There are people playing tennis, visiting in the village green, biking, walking, swimming and waiting in line at the bakery. The sunsets are amazing and the beaches are busy. The pelicans and the eagles are back and the days are long and hot. I love summer.

 

FALL

Fall is the most beautiful time at VB. The days and nights are cooler and there are fewer people around, especially after Thanksgiving. I love walking with my camera in the fall.

WINTER

It might strike you as strange but winter has become my favorite season at VB. There are a few reasons for this. First of all, the people are gone. The population goes from about 16,000 in the summer to 450 in the winter.  It’s not that I don’t like people, but I love the solitude in winter. I love walking the dogs on the roads without worrying about anyone complaining about them being off leash. I love that even on the coldest days, the wind is blocked by the trees and I can take the dogs for walks.  I love the pictures that I can take of the cold and the snow. Take a look:

 

 

SPRING

One of the really neat things about spring at VB is hearing the ice moving as it melts. The dogs can still run free and people have not returned yet. Spring leads to some really interesting pictures as well, with the contrast of the blue water and sky and the white snow and ice.

 

As you can see, it is an idyllic place in all the seasons.

We would love to see you at our sanctuary. Come for a drive and visit us. It’s only an hour from the North Perimeter and well worth the trip.

Hot Summer Deals and Photo Tips! (Winnipeg Photography Newsletter)

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Why I am obsessed with my iPhone and you could be too! 

I confess that I am addicted to my iPhone.  I like to have it with me at all times. Leaving it at home (which I have done on occasion),  makes me feel as though I am missing a body part! I sleep with it, eat with it and use it all day long!
It really amazes me that this little device is so powerful and so useful. This small phone/camera/GPS, etc. does just about everything but paint your house and cook your meals (although you can use it to find a painter or a cook!). I play Scrabble on my iPhone, (having logged in well over 1000 games}. I use the GPS and am always using it to find information. (Do you know how flea markets got their names? Use your Smart phone to find out)
I take a lot of photos on my iPhone and use some very cool apps to develop them.
This photo was shot and developed on my iPhone. You can see the actual print at the Red River Exhibition Photo Salon! http://www.redriverex.com/competitions/photo-contest/

I

I combined these 2 images to create the one above.

Amazing isn’t it?
All on my iPhone!
The world at my fingertips. And if fits in the palm on my hand!
This is one addiction that I love!

Here are some photo tips to improve your iPhone photography:

  • Use a camera app called Camera+ instead of the camera that comes with your iPhone. With Camera+, it won’t take the picture until you hold the camera still.
  • My favorite apps for developing photos are Snapseed, DynamicLight and DistressedFX. Play with your photos. It’s the only way your photography will improve.
  • Take an iPhone photography course given by Alexandra Morrison. https://plus.google.com/+alexandramorrison/posts/HEW35QhuSU4. I don’t know when she’s doing another course, but I’ve learned a lot from her.

Let me know if you have any questions re:iPhone Photography.



Questions to ask your family photographer

There are many options out there for choosing a family photographer. On Groupon alone, you can pick from  9 different businesses. The prices for Groupon photographers vary from $29 to $69 and the deals include receiving a few prints, to receiving a DVD of up to 20 high resolution digital images. I like a deal as much as the next person, but I wonder about businesses can offer a deal that is costing them money. If you are spending the time to get your family together to get professionals photos taken, don’t you want a great product?

Here are some suggestions for what to ask and what to look for when considering hiring a photographer:

  • Take a look at the image that they are using to advertise their deal. (People should not have green faces and their faces should not be hidden in shadow ) Look at their website and see if you like what they have to offer.
  • Ask how long they have been in business. (I’ve been in business for 8 years.)
  • What kind of photography do they specialize in? Do they have experience in that area? For example, if they are photographing children, have they had experience with them? (I was an early years teacher for over 30 years.)
  • Is there a policy for rescheduling in case of inclement weather? (I will reschedule an appointment with up to an hour’s notice if the weather is bad.)
  • Are digital images available for purchase? (I offer high resolution digital images).
  • Do you know anyone else who has used this person? Word of mouth is huge in finding a great photographer.)

I know it’s a lot of work to get your family ready for a photo session. You don’t want it to be a waste of your time.
Let me know if you are interested in purchasing my Groupon. I will do the session for the Groupon price of $55.

Please note that Groupons cannot be used for newborn sessions as those sessions take up to 4 hours to photograph.

Here’s my current deal:

https://www.groupon.com/deals/chris-mcwilliams-photography-1

Here’s a past deal:

Summer is here. Email me at chrismcwilliamsphotography@gmail.com to book your session. Do it now!



Landscape Photography Tips: Victoria Beach! 

We  have the most beautiful lakes and beaches in Manitoba and I was lucky to have spent a recent weekend at Victoria Beach. I had been there before but never for more than an afternoon. I love the rocks and the beaches but was especially struck by the gnarly trees in one spot and the high cliffs with faraway views. Here are a couple of my favorites:

Tips for taking better landscape photos:

  • Watch the light. If you can, take your pictures either right after sunrise, or before sunset.
  • Look at other photographer’s work online.
  • Learn the rules of composition; like rule of thirds  http://www.digitalcameraworld.com/2012/06/12/rule-of-thirds-use-it-and-break-it-with-confidence/and framing http://www.photographyblogger.net/framing/
  • Most importantly, take a photography course or join a community of photographers. There are a lot of them in Winnipeg but I would suggest the manitobacameraclub.ca, as that’s the one that I belong to and I’ve learned a lot from them!
  • Then practice, practice, practice. Take a ton of photographs
  • Have fun doing it!


But is it summer?

It’s hard to believe that it’s almost the end of June; that the longest day of the year is here.  Our summer days have been few and far between. I don’t think I’ve ever had to reschedule as many sessions as I have in the last month. And it just seems to be continuing that way.
I love shooting outside. I love natural backdrops but sometimes the weather does not cooperate. I will reschedule at an hour’s notice if need be. Sometimes rescheduling is not an option. I know what that’s like. You’ve finally got the whole family to agree to a day and time and you got them all to wear matching colours and then it starts to rain. Rescheduling would be difficult.
There are some options for indoor photos. We can use my studio but the space is limited to about 6 people. I often use the Legislative building. It’s free and doesn’t need to be booked ahead of time. There are many spots that make great backdrops for family photos. And then, if it is possible to go outside, the grounds are lovely! I have also done a few sessions inside at the Forks, both in the Inn at the Forks and inside the Forks Market. It’s a great alternative if it isn’t a busy weekend.

We can make it work. It isn’t the same as being outside, but we can make some beautiful photographs!

This was taken inside at The Ledge.

Taken inside The Inn at the Forks.



Summer Deal

My next website coupon deal is for 50% off prints, including the shipping fee. The coupon code is “summerdeal.” It is valid until July 7th, so don’t delay using it. Please note that this offer is good for prints bought from my website only.
Let me know if you have any questions.

I book about a month in advance, so let me know if you are interested in updating your family photo.

Remember “summerdeal.”  Use it now.


And Finally

I found this poem some time ago. I’ve never heard of Erin Hanson, the poet, but his words ring true.You can tell a lot about a person by the photos they have displayed. What photos are displayed at your house? Are they recent? Is it time to update them?

Yours in photography,
Christina

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Victoria Beach, Mb (Winnipeg Photographers)

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We may live in a hostile, cold environment here in Manitoba, but we are blessed with some of the best lakes and beaches in North America. Victoria Beach is one of them and I was lucky to be able to have spent this last weekend there. I love the rugged coastline with its many beaches.

What a glorious place to go!

Here are a few of my favorite images:

victoria beachsm 5 14-101 victoria beachsm 5 14-102 victoria beachsm 5 14-103 victoria beachsm 5 14-104 victoria beachsm 5 14-105 victoria beachsm 5 14-108 victoria beachsm 5 14-109 victoria beachsm 5 14-111 victoria beachsm 5 14-112 victoria beachsm 5 14-113 victoria beachsm 5 14-115 victoria beachsm 5 14-121 victoria beachsm 5 14-122 john and dog

The Forks and Exchange (Winnipeg Photographers)

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I think winter may have lessened its grip on us. Today was a beautiful winter day and I went out to get some shots at The Forks and the Exchange, as well as a few other places. I enjoyed being out with all the other people who were out. Most didn’t have a camera like I did but people were out walking, skating, tobogganing, and just having fun.

Here are some of my favourites from today:

forks, exchangesm 3 14-1 forks, exchangesm 3 14-2 forks, exchangesm 3 14-3 forks, exchangesm 3 14-4 forks, exchangesm 3 14-5 forks, exchangesm 3 14-6 forks, exchangesm 3 14-7

LIght Painting Workshop

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It was a beautiful night. It was a break from the every day.  It was fun. It was great to be with good friends. But best of all are the images that I made tonight. Totally amazing images. They speak for themselves.

A huge thank you to Mike Stobbs for coming to Winnipeg and doing this workshop for us and to Kirsten Homenuik for setting this up.

Here are some of the images that I made tonight!

painting with light 9 13sm-200

painting with light 9 13sm-201

painting with light 9 13sm-202

painting with light 9 13sm-203

New Landscape/Travel Website! (Winnipeg Photographers)

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I’ve been very busy lately working on websites. First my own; http://www.chrismcwilliamsphotography.com and then my landscape site http://www.21photo.ca and the camera club one (that one isn’t ready to go yet.)

Today, I am launching my new landscape/travel site: www.21photo.ca.

Have a look. I think it looks pretty awesome.

I’m toying with the idea of switching my main site to ww.21photo.ca. What do you think? It is a shorter and more catchy name. I wonder though how much work it would be and how efficient it would be to send people who go http://www.chrismcwilliamsphotography.com to a new website. I know I can have a forwarding page.

Your comments on my new site and also about the idea of changing my whole site to 21photo would be appreciated.

Thank you!

Here’s a screen shot of the new site.

screen shot 21photo

 

Nature’s Magical Icicle Show (Winnipeg Nature Photography

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I hate this weather as much as anyone but did you know there is a magical icicle show in the snow banks right on your street?

I found all of these on Headmaster near Gateway yesterday. If you haven’t noticed them, take a look. They remind me of the cenotes in Mexico. Of course these are much smaller but there is something magical about them.

Having said that, I hope they don’t last long.  I am also posting the weather for this day for anyone who doesn’t live here and doesn’t realize how cold it is. It’s March 17th and is still as cold as the dead of winter!

If you haven’t noticed the icicles, get out and take a look. Take your camera along with you too!

weather

icicles 3 13-104sm

icicles 3 13-105 8x10sm

iciclessm

icicles 3 13-102sm

icicles 3 13-101sm