New Blog!

May 1, 2009

Hey everyone.  Thanks so much for following me on this blog!  I’ve moved it now, and you can find the continuation of this blog at http://adrianblakephotographer.wordpress.com

Check out the new blog and bookmark it! Check back often!
Cheers Folks!

-Adrian

Before and After

April 29, 2009

Several weeks ago I borrows a sweet Canon EF 135 F/2 lens from work.  Naturally, the most beautiful subject I could think of to take photos of was my girlfriend, Jackie.  Although I am very happy with the picture straight out of camera, I wanted to show you what a basic retouch would look like.   This is the type of attention your images get before being printed in an album or loose print.  The first picture is the before shot, the second one is the after shot.  You should be able to see that a few blemishes have been removed, her freckles have been smoothed a little (but it still looks natural, no barbie dolls here) the image has been brightened, her lips are more saturated, and her eyes and teeth are whiter.  The second image has also been sharpened.  Have a look:

Before:

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After:

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This type of retouch takes 15 mintues to half an hour on each photo and is a big part of the reason your reprints or album costs so much.  Its this attention to detail that makes a professional photographer well worth the extra money over having ‘uncle Bill’ take your wedding photos.

Changes are Coming!

April 24, 2009

I’ve been working with a friend of mine on a new logo.  Soon, my blog and website will be changing.  Although www.whirlwindphotography.com will still be active and redirecting people, the new domain name will be www.adrianblakephotographer.com and will soon be sporting my new logo!  This blog will change names slightly as well.  I’m looking forward to the stronger and more consistent branding, I hope you are too!

-Adrian

Another Great Wedding

April 20, 2009

Hello again!

I just wanted to tell you about the great experience I had on Saturday.  I second shot all day at a wedding in the Holland Marsh area and had a total blast!  The ceremony and reception were held at the Julius Caesar banquette hall near York University and even though we had limited places for the pictures, they really worked out great.  Can’t post any just yet, the main photographer has to have his chance first, but I can’t wait to show everyone some of these shots!
Take care!

[b] Workshop Canada

April 10, 2009

April 7th and 8th saw [b]ecker, world class professional wedding photographer brave the great white north to give two seperate full day workshops in Burlington Ontario.  Naturally I had to be in attendace as Becker is undoubtedly my professional mentor.  The [b] logo is one of the most recognisable brands in wedding photography and Becker’s personality is absolutely electric and his passion unwavering.  The workshop was awesome, bringing together about 30 people each day to learn about not necessarily the best way to do things, but what has worked and failed in Becker’s own experiences.  I met some wonderful people and made friends with some awesome photographers from all over Ontario and furthered my interest in the [b]school, Becker’s online community for professional and aspiring wedding photographers.  Check out Becker at the following links:

www.thebecker.com

www.beckersblog.com

www.thebschoolblog.com

www.thebschool.com

I’d also like to thank Michele Bowman (www.michelebowmanphoto.com), James Lee (www.jamesleephoto.com) and Alan Nielsen (www.ninelivephotography.ca) for befriending me on a higher level than the rest of the group, and offering to help further my business and education.  I certainly hope I get to work with each of these wonderful people in the near future.  This summer is starting to look like alot of fun and hard work, I can’t wait!  Most importantly I was to thank Glen Flett (www.FusionPhotographic.com) for hosting the whole thing.  Without him Becker wouldn’t have been here and the workshop wouldn’t have happened.  Thanks so much Glen for putting this on!
So what’s the most valuable thing I learned from this workshop?  Branding is probably the second most important part of your business, right after making sure your clients like you!  My clients like me, so check that one off the list but my branding SUCKS.  So in the next couple of weeks I will likely be changing the name of the business to Adrian Blake Photographer, developing a logo and ‘feel’ to my brand, changing my website, blog, and client proofing to try to make them more continuous in design and feel, and generally taking advantage of every opportunity I can to improve my branding.

Now on to the photos!

Lunchtime probably wasn’t the best opportunity to catch Becker in all his splendor, LOL.

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Teaching us the good stuff: Becker took the time to do an impromptu shoot with us, explaining how he goes about finding good light, and demonstrated first hand how easy it can be to get great pictures if you know your camera and can make your subject laugh.

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Handing the camera over to a friend is a great way to end up in the pictures!

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The poor guy must get in more trouble with the girlfriend thanks to shots like this…. but that won’t stop me from posting them on the blog!

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This is James Lee entertaining the group.

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Even in the middle of dinner, Becker can’t stop helping people learn.

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Me, having a good informal chat with Becker about the mentality, drive and motivation it takes to be successful in anything you do.

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Back to Reality

April 6, 2009

It’s been a 5 day mini vacation, and now I’m back to the daily grind.  Thankfully, each day is a little different in my grind!
The last 5 days I have been off in celebration of my birthday.  Wednesday my buddy Peter from Mississauga came up to hang out and my girlfriend made us all a wonderful steak dinner.  Thursday she treated me to the Detroit vs. St Louis game in Detroit (GREAT game for those of you who didn’t see it) and a night over in Windsor.  Friday we trekked all the way to Mississauga, had dinner with my friends Andrew and Lisa and then went out to Failte’s Irish Pub near Square One.  Saturday we had breakfast at Andrew and Lisa’s again, and then dinner out with my parents at Moxies in Meadowvale, it was awesome, I love Moxies.  After that we went downtown to the Hard Rock Cafe on Younge Street to watch my friend Bobby’s band DecemberFlood play a set.  I also wanted to give them the photos I took last time I saw them play, see further down my blog for some of those..    Sunday we met Jackie’s parents for lunch at the Pickle Barrell at Erin Mills Towncentre (another great lunch spot) and then Sunday evening my mom made us all turkey dinner since the family won’t be able to get together for Easter.

Thanks to everyone who supported me for my birthday and came out to either Kool’s or Failte’s or who took the time to post a happy birthday message on my Facebook wall.

New Car Picture

March 25, 2009

Since the start of February it seems like I have done nothing but work and shop for a new car.  My 98 Neon had over 246,000 kms on it, and needed about $1500 in repairs.  Not worth it!

So I went shopping, and brought home this beautiful ‘smoke’ coloured ’05 Nissan Altima with the V6, 5spd manual transmission, leather interior w/ heated seats, sunroof, 6CD in dash changer with Bose sound, and only 36,000 kms on the odometer!  I haven’t done a ton of driving in it yet, but I absolutely LOVE it!  So if you see me booting around London in this thing, be sure to say hi!!

P.S.   Someone make it stop raining on my car!!!

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So I’ve been posting about this mysterious Valentines day wedding that I shot, with no pics to back it up.  Here’s the pics!!  Enjoy, and feel free to leave coments!

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And I know this last picture is pretty bad for alot of reasons, but I thought it was funny.  This just goes to show that not everything goes smoothly, but the day can still be awesome.

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Never Ending Education

March 21, 2009

For the last 4 weeks I’ve been taking a course through Henry’s on studio and portrait lighting.  It’s been wonderfully educational as I really haven’t had any previous studio experience.  I usually prefer shooting outdoors in natural light or with fill flash from a speedlight, but this studio lighting experience is proving remarkably valuable.  This weekend will be the 5th and final class and having learned quite a bit about posing and lighting theory, I hope to bring that new knowledge to my wedding photography.  I wish I could post some of the pictures from the shoots we’ve been doing, but I signed a release restricting how I can use the photos.  If you’d like to see some of the work I’ve done just let me know in person and I’ll show you my printed work. 

As well, on April 8th I’ll be in Burlington doing a workshop with my idol, [b]ecker.  Beckers bracketed b is one of the most recognised brands in professional wedding photography and hearing him speak and working with him on topics not only covering effective wedding photography and taking quality pictures but also covering good business practices and marketing strategies will certainly be worth almost any price to me.  Check out becker’s personal website at www.beckerphotographer.com 

The point of this post really is the fact that I’m always looking to improve.  I’m excited about the new tools I will have at my disposal over the next few weeks and I look forward to furthering my photographic and business tallents. 

This week I will finally have time to edit the rest of the photos from the Valentines Day wedding and so keep an eye on the blog for those new shots. 

Talk soon,

-Adrian

So first things first, I met another awesome bride to be at Jack Astor’s tonight.  I’m going to have to keep this job forever just because of all the cool people I meet!  Her name was Anna and I can’t wait to talk to her again about her wedding.  I love meeting new brides and brides to be, this whole wedding thing is so much fun!  I don’t think I’ll ever know how excited women get about their wedding, but I think its safe to say I get pretty excited myself!!

And in other news, I picked up my new car!  I’m driving a beautiful dark grey ’05 Nissan Altima 3.5 V6 with leather and a sunroof.  I love it, its so smooth and refined.  Finally a mature car that I really fit in!
More pics soon people!

cheers

-Adrian

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