Posts tagged photography
Rooftopping With Liquid String

My collaboration with Liquid String resurrected a long-time personal passion, namely roof-top and city photography, which came at a time when on-going assignments were otherwise forcing me to remain grounded.

Valentin Coman, the man behind the Toronto-area technical solutions provider, Liquid String, took me on assignment to survey and photograph real estate properties through the Greater Toronto Area on behalf his long-time client AA Property Management.

 
Valentin Coman, Liquid String.

Valentin Coman, Liquid String.

Yours truly, Michael Victor Studio.

Yours truly, Michael Victor Studio.

 

Subsequently going out on a few outings of my own, I present for your enjoyment a collection of city views taken from various suburban real-estate development nodes in the Greater Toronto Area.

Digital Collage, Architectural Models

Wet cobblestones and row upon row of masonry warehouse set the stage for this photo shoot in SOHO, New York CIty. Taking out my canon 8-15 mm fisheye lens out for a spin, see below my two favorite captures from the trip.

Digital Collage created from a collection of personal architectural photographs taken on trips to the United States and Eastern Europe, as well as from a collection of studio shots featuring student models from George Brown College. Prints made their debut at the Kensington Market Art fair, in Toronto, November 2014. 

Beachest studio shoot with Darren Kane
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I had been intending to do a high gloss studio shoot for quite some time when I met Toronto stylist Darren Kane at a post-show party subsequent to the fall Art Toronto exhibit at the Metro Toronto Convention center.

A natural camera darling and beaming with masculine beauty, Darren proved to be wonderful talent to work with for this studio photoshoot.

Shot in Toronto's east-end neighborhood, the Beaches. [Beaches Studio]

Featuring HIM Toronto models @night.danger and @garett.mma

 

Troy Smith's post-industrial rebar furniture designs

A hot summer day among the lush foliage of Chorley Park in Rosedale Toronto.  A pick-up truck rolls in, stacked to the top with hundreds of pounds of highly polished, vibrantly colored, rebar steel furniture. The next few hours have us trekking through the city, fighting mid-day traffic, from mid-town to Cityplace, to Corktown in the east end. The end result, a catalogue shoot displaying the pieces in settings most appropriate to their source of inspiration, the newly developing high-rise, glass steel and concrete portions of the central city.

Portrait I took while visiting their Rosedale residence. Study.

Portrait I took while visiting their Rosedale residence. Study.

Azure Feature description

Azure Feature description

I met Toronto interior and furniture designer Troy Smith through a mutual acquaintance, a man who was my mentor at the time and who back my first few ventures in the art world. The fruits of our efforts from that day hopefully served to boost the profile of an emerging Toronto artist, his work receiving first mention in the Azure Dispatch from the Interior Design Show.

Toronto Urban Photography Festival

As a contender and second place winner of the 2013 edition of the Toronto Urban Photography Festival, (http://tupf.ca/about-tupf/) I had the privilege of participating in my first gallery exhibit, displaying fine art urban photography pieces to interested art buyers and fine art aficionados.

 

In their own words

The first festival ran from March 9-23, 2013 and had work in 7 galleries, 6 urban talks, 5 workshops, and 5 photo walks. There were collaborations with Crossing Lines (UK), Humans of Toronto, Toronto Photo Walks, and Lomography Canada, and our original projects—The Disposable Camera Project (which became its own entity), and the TO Neighbourhoods Project. Our call for works had over 45 entries from all over the world including the UK, Germany, Unites States, Italy, and Canada.
— http://tupf.ca/about-tupf/

Below, you will find a selection of the original pieces submitted for competition, as well as additional theme-related digital photographs taken in subsequent years. 

Monday Morning in Kensington Market

Originally published for the Friends of Kensington Market community association.

Morning coffee in Kensington Market. 

As the fuzzy sunshine melts away my hangover and the last vestiges of Pedestrian Sundays are either swept up or power-washed away, it gradually becomes apparent that a different kind of life takes place in the market on a weekday morning.

Delivery truck in Kensington Market.

A rolling stream of vans and trucks flows slowly through the narrow streets, while the staff unceremoniously go to work. Not young, not hip, not hipster, these are the men and women who make Kensington what it is, the 5% of that Sunday crowd who go to bed and wake up here, the underbelly of the daily show that is Kensington Market. 

Not young, not hip, not hipster. 

Fresh fruits and veggies pile up on Delivery Truck Mondays in Kensington Market. 

Bike courier vs delivery truck in Kensington Market, Toronto. 

All is quiet in the market.

Meanwhile the streets are quiet.  The crowds, which a few hours prior filled them to the brim with booze and laughter, now safely tucked away in cubicles a few blocks over, scanning the azure horizons of lake Ontario from the 47th story glazed blue corner office window. Or something of that nature. 

Whereas for me, this it, my last and final day in Kensington, having fulfilled a long-standing wish to someday live here. That someday was today, and soon it will be yesterday. I'm happy and grateful for such a lovely experience. Onward. 

 

 

How to make good use of light

In my humble opinion, as far as I can tell from the feedback I've gotten on my photography, as well as by observing the reactions of the people viewing my photo work, one major characteristic that separates winning photographs and photographers from the rest of the pack is a deliberate and strategic use of light. 

I won't go into any details regarding the actual techniques, since there is an astonishing amount of content on the web on the strategic deployment of light. What I give, instead, is a way to bridge the gap between theory and practice. 

There is a level of anxiety and pressure that comes with taking every exposure. Beginners tend to believe that taking more shots is better, because at least a few will turn out good. I advocate the opposite approach. Take your time, get very familiar with what you see through the viewfinder, and then move around. See how the geometry of shadows change. See how in some positions you create lens flare, and how in others you do not. Shoot against the sun. Watch how the position of the light source can cause the light to wrap around certain objects.


That's really the key. Take your time and move around. I'll leave you with this photo as a parting example.