Scotiabank Dance Centre Taps Into Vancouver’s Talent

Posted by on October 7, 2013 at 2:23 pm.

“The Dance Centre not only assisted in the creation of my artistic form, but also created a platform for which my work was able to be shown and highlighted in the community. I know that without their assistance, the achievements and development of my work would not have the same potential.” Shay Kuebler | Choreographer and Performer

We could not have said it better ourselves. Shay’s words pretty much sum up how we feel about our venue sponsor for Raw Talent 2013. Without the generosity of the Scotiabank Dance Centre, our exhibit would not have a home, our photographers would not have an outlet to showcase their talents, and our audiences would not have the opportunity to engage in what has become a wildly anticipated annual event for the entire city’s creative community. We can’t help but have a soft spot for this organization when its mission is to support local artists like Shay, who go on to create works like this!

Faris Family Studio at The Dance CentreSome may find it unusual for a photography exhibit to be housed in a dance theatre like Scotiabank Dance Centre’s “black box” or Faris Family Studio, pictured to the left with its retractable hydraulic seating. But when you think about it, are dance and photography so dissimilar? Both incredible visual art forms that offer a way of communicating beyond speech, one is never far from the other. Beautiful as they are on their own, they are inspiring when performed in partnership. The much-loved Ballerina Project is a prime example, as are the following captured moments of motion featuring dancers who will be performing in upcoming Dance Centre shows:

Liquid Loft | Photo by Chris Haring

Liquid Loft | Photo by Chris Haring
Running Sushi: October 31 – November 2, 2013 |

Ziyian Kwan | Photo by Chris Randle

Ziyian Kwan | Photo by Chris Randle
the neck to fall: November 21 & 22, 2013

Battery Opera | Photo by Yvonne Chew

Battery Opera | Photo by Yvonne Chew
Everything: November 21 & 22, 2013

The Dance Centre 2013-2014 Season

The 605 Collective | Photo by David Cooper

The 605 Collective | Photo by David Cooper
Inheritor Album: January 30 – February 1, 2014 |

It never made sense to me that a major city like Vancouver with its many talents should not have a thriving arts and culture scene to rival those of Toronto or New York. What we see instead is the closure of historical institutions like the Playhouse, and the bleeding of local artists to more vibrant locales with greater prospects. It is consequently all the more important to support non-profit organizations like The Dance Centre, which also serves as a registered charity. The architectural beauty that it operates within is a non-subsidized building that must generate enough revenue from studio rentals in order to continue the development of dance in BC.

The Scotiabank Dance Centre Building with Heritage FacadeFactoid: The site at 677 Davie Street once served as the foundation for a bank in the 1920s. The two-story neoclassical composition of granite and brick became the home of The Bank of Nova Scotia and served well as a popular period film set in its final years. When the plot was donated to build The Dance Centre, the challenge fell into the hands of lead architects Arthur Erickson and Noel Best. Recognizing the multi-faceted needs of the numerous groups that would utilize the space, dancers were consulted in every step of the way. Quite literally as well, at the floor design stage, when rigorous testing with pointe shoes, slippers, bare feet, tap, and flamenco shoes commenced. When The Dance Centre opened its doors in 2001, it had been transformed from a 6,000sqft space to a 32,000sqft state-of-the-art facility with specialized floors and custom designs to serve all disciplines. Not one to forget its roots, the history of the site is remembered through the façade of the old heritage building which greets you when you round the corner from Davie to Granville.

The Centre supports dance professionals in a myriad of ways. Member benefits include everything from job search help, to grant writing, to marketing, and even fundraising. It not only presents information sessions, but workshops, networking opportunities that are invaluable for an emerging artist, and also awards to help jump start a dancer’s career. Full Artist and Company members also benefit from substantial discounts and rush rates on studio rentals and even free use of the boardroom for the all too important meetings. Video services and an edit suite are accessible for cutting demos, as well as an extensive library of tapes and DVDs for those seeking further study in their discipline.

You don’t need to be in the arts to know that it can be a very expensive vocation. Programs like The Dance Centre’s Artists-in-Residence, which Shay belongs to as part of The 605 Collective, offer assistance by fully subsidizing studio space so that those in his company can develop new works without the burden of the usual overhead. As a result, they are enabled to create, teach, and most enjoyably, perform.

Dancers in Birmingham Studio

Dancers in The Bruce R Birmingham Studio | Photo by Daniel Collins

The mark of growth can also be found in the ability of an artist to bridge disciplines, something that The Dance Centre doesn’t overlook. An interdisciplinary research program called DanceLab also funds fully subsidized studio space to encourage choreographers and artists from different disciplines to work together in an effort to explore the potential of cross-art form collaboration to innovate new works. Recognizing that the general audience is always the ultimate test of any experiment, the results are then shared with the public at a free studio presentation.

It is this kind of forward-thinking and inclusive approach led by Canada’s flagship dance facility that enables projects like the 12×12 Vancouver Photo Marathon to shine. Thank you, Scotiabank Dance Centre, for inviting our audience to join yours in the collective enjoyment of the arts.

Dance. Photography. Music. Painting. They are all branches from the same tree. All of us that work under the canopy of arts and culture are connected, and should always support one another if we want to grow.

On Saturday October 12, the doors of the Scotiabank Dance Centre will open at 6pm for the whole city to take in a FREE one-of-a-kind photo exhibit of 60 film photographers. It only happens once a year, and it only happens for one night. You will not want to miss Raw Talent 2013: The 12×12 Vancouver Photo Marathon Exhibit.

Raw Talent Photo Boards by John Biehler

Photo by: John Biehler

Opus Sees the Big Picture

Posted by on October 1, 2013 at 12:27 pm.

When you are introduced to 12×12 for the first time, you are likely to only see photography. But as the many photo marathoners who have participated over the years will tell you, it is so much more than that. As you slowly zoom out, what begins to enter the frame is creativity, spontaneity, perseverance, friendship, teamwork, and community all revolving around a common interest in the art of photography. This is what Opus Art Supplies had the vision to see all those years ago when a crazy Viking sailed in with tales of artistic conquests. Morten Rand-Hendriksen has now led five successful thematic explorations, with many talented adventurers awarded for their valiant efforts with riches that only Opus can bestow.

OPUS Art Supplies LogoFive years is a very long time. That is how long we’ve been running the 12×12 Vancouver Photo Marathon and exactly how long Opus has been a major supporter. We’ve developed such a great bond with this local company that to be quite honest, we don’t know if we would want to continue this tradition without our long-time partner. You’d be hard-pressed to find another company that lends as much support to the same customer base that it generates its business from. That’s because Opus too, sees the big picture. Community matters, especially in the arts.

Crissy Arseneau Helping out at the 2013 12x12 Vancouver Photo Marathon

Our long-time friend Crissy Arseneau from Opus helping out at the 2013 12×12 Vancouver Photo Marathon: (L) Revealing Theme 3: Far Away So Close and (R) Posing as a Model for Jackie Dives’ Interpretation of It

Growing with Opus has been fun, even educational. Always in tune with industry developments, their product line is always evolving to meet the latest demands. That is why our prizing also changes year to year. When something new is available, our winners always benefit from being one of the first to enjoy it. The highlight of 2013 is the introduction of Facemounting. Similar to an Aluminum Composite Mounted print (as in the last two Raw Talent exhibits), Facemounting prints are also raised from the wall to create a floating appearance. The difference is that Facemounted images are printed on gloss photo paper and mounted directly to plexi. This adds an unparalleled vibrancy to images. Colours pop, making two-dimensional images spring to life. Black and white photos, especially those with a variety of grey and white tones, are lent a level of depth that can make a flat image feel almost three dimensional.

To showcase the potential of Facemounting, we checked out an exhibit by an Opus customer that took advantage of it the moment it became available. Here is a feature on Yuichi Takasaka, who is currently enjoying an exhibit at Art Beatus that features an incredible body of work on the Aurora Borealis.

Yuichi’s passion for photography began when he came to Vancouver on a working holiday at age 20, but his move to Yellowknife in the early 90s marked the moment when that passion took on inspiration. Having had his first glimpse of the Aurora Borealis during a visit to Jasper in Alberta, he knew he was in the ideal place to continue his studies with the natural phenomenon. “You can get well over 200 nights of northern lights there every year,” he says. With these strange “Lights” as his muse, Yuichi honed his skills at capturing them by night while working for a Japanese tour company promoting them by day. What resulted were award-winning images so stunning that they have been featured in exhibitions worldwide, as well as in a variety of publications and websites, including that of NASA.

Northern Lights by Yuichi Takasaka

One of the stunning photos by Yuichi Takasaka, currently on exhibit until October 18th at Art Beatus

For 7 years Yuichi lived in Yellowknife experimenting with different photographic techniques and now based in Lumby, BC, he still goes back annually to lead photography tours to shoot new variations of the Lights. It is a very rare thing indeed for most of us to witness the Northern Lights, but you can experience all its vivid details and transformative colours at Fires in the North, exhibited now until October 18th at Art Beatus. Check it out and get a preview of the prizes that await our 12×12 winners at Raw Talent 2013 on October 12th at the Scotiabank Dance Centre.

Thanks to Opus, winners of each theme will have their work printed at 10″x15″ on Arches Velin Paper and framed with custom-cut snow white mats in 13″x19″ Opus BOD Wide Frames in white. The top 4 winning images (Best Series, Best Photo, and runner-ups for both) will be printed at 24″x36″ and mounted for display using the latest addition to the Opus Fine Art Digital Printing Service, Facemounting. All the boards on which each of our 60 marathoners will have their images mounted are also provided by Opus this year, which is a tremendous help. Without their loyal support, there would be no exhibit to showcase. This is a company that cares about the causes it backs. Some of you had the joy of meeting Crissy (pictured above) at the marathon. Without her cheering us on every year, 12×12 would still be just a crazy Viking’s tall tale.

Raw Talent Exhibit by John Biehler

Photo by: John Biehler

As much as we’d like to wish it, ours isn’t the only project that enjoys being in the Opus spotlight. There are many non-profit organizations that also benefit. So many in fact, that this post would be a book before we covered them all, which is kind of amazing! When asked why Opus continues to support 12×12, this is what they had to say:

“Opus is committed to supporting the visual arts in BC. It’s one of the ways we contribute to the communities that, in turn, support our business. When we introduced Fine Art Digital Printing as a service at Opus, that support grew to include the photographic community.

The 12×12 Vancouver Photo Marathon embodies the kind of event that we aim to sponsor – a non-profit organization working to enhance the visual arts and that does so by engaging the community. It’s exciting to play a part in an event like 12×12, to see the photographers embracing and creatively pushing through the limits set on marathon day, and to then share with them in the art that results at the exhibit. The participants and the people that support their work by attending the Raw Talent Exhibition are our customers – they are the creative individuals that both shop at and work at our stores, the reason why we choose to provide the kind of products and services we do, and why we work everyday to evolve our business to continue to meet their needs.

So, while 12×12 has been incredibly gracious in thanking Opus for our support, we also offer our thanks to you. To Angela, Morten, and the volunteers that work to put 12×12 on, the businesses that offer sponsorship, the photographers that participate in 12×12, and all those who attend the exhibition, we thank you for providing the visual arts community with this outstanding event.”

We think we’ve got a keeper here. Yes, five years is a long time. Perhaps it’s time to pop the big question ;o)

Opus Big Picture Logo

Submission Dates:
October 01 – 10, 2013

Now put yourself in the Opus Big Picture! Our wonderful sponsor has just launched its first ever photo event that is very much in tune with 12×12. You are invited to interpret the theme “Red, Yellow, Blue,” but in the medium of digital photography. You are more than welcome to shoot in film, of course. You simply have to convert it to a digital format for entry.

Images are to be taken and submitted online during the first 10 days of October: Tuesday, October 1 to Thursday, October 10, 2013. Three images will be selected to be reproduced by the Opus Fine Art Digital Printing Service and exhibited in all Opus stores. Winners will receive a copy of their digital print too! Look for complete details and submission criteria at any Opus location, in their October Visual Arts Newsletter, or online. Do us proud, guys!

Building a Foundation with Kerrisdale Cameras

Posted by on August 19, 2013 at 2:37 pm.

As an organizer of the 12×12 Vancouver Photo Marathon, people are sometimes surprised when they find out that I have virtually no background in photography. I’d never even changed a lens until Morten came around some 12 years ago toting his beloved EOS-1 and going on (and on) about some kooky idea of running with cameras. I also would have never realized that Kerrisdale Cameras existed a mere block away from home!

We vividly remember the first time we walked into the unassuming shop. Initially surprised by its modest surroundings, we quickly found out why there was no need for flash or frills. Rick was on hand to offer us not only advice and suggestions, but also a few useful photo tips. We had not gone in with the intention of buying anything and never felt pressured to go home with anything off the shelves. Some managers may think of that as a lost opportunity, but for all the years that followed, the Burnaby location of Kerrisdale became our shop of choice whenever we ‘needed’ a new toy and Rick became our go-to-guy for everything photo related. We’ve always wanted to team up with Kerrisdale Cameras and are very excited and proud to announce them as the official 2013 sponsor of 12×12’s film development, printing, and scanning.

Its unpretentious approach is what won us over and this is one of the qualities that has made Kerrisdale the province’s largest photo specialty chain. Now celebrating 52 years as a family owned and operated business, it is obvious that a solid foundation is at the root of this company’s history of success. As we oft like to do, we’re going to take you back in time. As we dial 1961 into the DeLorean, we strongly recommend that you bring a friend along to catch you when you faint at the sight of new houses going for $13,000.

While John F. Kennedy was inaugurated as President of the United States, sweeping the nation off its feet half a century ago were go-go booted dancers prancing to the Pony and giving Surrender to Elvis’ gyrating hips, boat-sized guzzlers road-tripping at 7 cents a litre, Holly Golightly having her first Breakfast at Tiffany’s, and Michael J. Fox taking his first breath 5 months after Wayne Gretzky. The average income may have been $5,000, but boy was it spent well, especially if you were snap happy because also saying hello to the world that year was the first Kerrisdale store in Vancouver.

Bob Hudson with a Canon F1 circa 1972

Bob Hudson with a Canon F1 circa 1972

Co-founded by Bob Hudson and his mother Mary, the original location on West 41st and Yew St has stood the test of time and continues to serve recreational and professional photographers seeking fair prices and sound advice. Having already had a good 10 years of experience selling cameras while studying commerce at UBC, Bob not only knew exactly what to ask to fit customers to the right equipment, but he also remembered all the answers the next time that same customer came back for an upgrade! Always progressive, the young entrepreneur was Googling well before it was added to the Oxford English Dictionary.

But staying ahead of the curve doesn’t mean forgetting the past. Just as a solid foundation grounds a business, a firm grasp of the principles of photography makes a photographer into an artist. For all its modern conveniences, the digital medium still doesn’t hold a candle to the nuances and richness that film photography affords. Why else would art schools continue to teach core photography programs using only film? While other specialty stores clear their shelves of range finders and manual drives, Kerrisdale continues to accept trade-ins and continues to process film. Morten and I never leave the store without gazing at the huge selection of classic cameras and are always floored by how much they now go for. They don’t make them like they used to, so consider taking home one of these gems.

Shelves upon shelves of 35mm cameras, lenses, and accessories for sale at Kerrisdale Cameras

Dilemma: Picking one out of so many 35mm cameras and lenses. Solution: Get one for each day of the week!

Linda Hudson, owner of Kerrisdale Cameras

Daughter Linda Hudson Carries on the Legacy Her Late Father Built

Kerrisdale’s web list of used film equipment is updated twice a week:

Used Film Cameras | Used Lenses & Lens Accessories

Boy, would we have had a blast shooting the breeze with Bob, who like his mother never stopped working at the main store. Having passed away in 2011, he is remembered fondly by the community and rests easy knowing that his daughter Linda now carries on the legacy he and his mother have built.

If you have any questions about the camera you’ll be running around with on August 31st, Kerrisdale is staffed with many photographers that still shoot in film, including Stuart at the Vancouver location who is so dedicated to the medium it is permanently inked on his arm. If anyone knows film, it would be him. With a collection of nearly 300 film cameras, Stuart still shoots entirely in the classic medium.

Film Tattoo on Stuart KennedyAnd here are the other sales associates that know their way around a film camera. Recognize any of ‘em? ;o)Kerrisdale Camera Associates That Still Shoot Film: Mike Wilson, Robert Anderson, Jolene Reiniger, John Roberts, Chris McDonaldKerrisdale Camera Associates That Still Shoot Film: Meghan Oram, Alex Hakonson, Bill Green, Jason Hamper, Lynann Colligan

It’s clear that another foundation for Kerrisdale’s success is its staff, almost 50% of which have been with the company for over 10 years! If you’ve been itching to buy a camera, ask any of them about this current promotion (which includes film cameras) ending August 31.Kerrisdale Cameras Promotion

2012 Sponsor Photo Challenge!

Posted by on August 17, 2012 at 11:28 am.

Sponsors always wonder what it’s like to do the 12×12 Vancouver Photo Marathon so we figured, why not give them a little taste? We can’t be the only ones having all the fun! ;o)

And so the Sponsor Photo Challenge was born. With theme assignment in hand, our awesome sponsors set about the task of capturing their unique interpretation with a single shot. Here are the very cool results (in no particular order) for the theme:


Foundation by Opus Art Supplies

I hate when I’m misinterpreted. You now that annoying situation of Chinese whispers where one simple word gets blown out of context and suddenly all meaning is lost? To avoid such frustrating circumstances, I like to take things literally in all aspects of my life from conversations to image making. If you give me a theme of “foundation” then that’s exactly what I’m going to give back.

Foundation describes the ground or base upon which a structure rests. On a recent walk home to East Van from Downtown I spotted the iconic looking Science World in the background of a mess of construction work. The foundations of a new structure stood trapped behind the wire fencing, which I thought was also important to include in the image as it captures the many levels through which access is granted. From laying down the groundwork of a fence for safety, to the actual construction or deconstruction of a structure, to the finished piece: I saw it all in this frame. Interpret at your own discretion.

by Christine Redmond, Opus Art Supplies

Opus LogoOpus Art Supplies
100 – 207 West Hastings Street, Vancouver | Tel: 604.678.5889
Also on Granville Island, in North Vancouver, Langley, Victoria, and Kelowna

From day one, Opus Art Supplies has backed us up and helped us feature our winners in spectacular ways. For 2012, the always amazing team at Opus is sponsoring 12×12 with:

  • Four 24″x36″ fine art digital prints on paper and mounted on Opus Aluminum Mounting Panels for our top 4 winners (if you were at Raw Talent last year, you know how incredible these are)
  • Twelve  8″x12″ canvas prints stretched on 3/4″ stretcher bars and finished in custom cut white Opus BOD frames for our 12 individual theme winners
  • Lanyards and reusable roll-up shopping bags for the participant packages

Foundation by Photo Life Magazine

This theme inspired me to contemplate the foundational elements of my culture. The making of the “ceinture fléchée” is a part of French-Canadian history, and it’s also a part of my family’s particular cultural heritage. This traditional sash is created through a method of finger weaving developed by my ancestors a few centuries ago. At that time, the arrow sashes were worn by the general French-Canadian population, including the “coureur des bois” and the bourgeois class. This handmade traditional piece of clothing connects me to my history and origins and reminds me that creativity is a foundational element of French-Canadian culture. But, more importantly, it represents the countless hours I’ve seen my mother put into this wonderful handicraft as I sat at her side as a child, untangling the wool as the patterns were created.

My mother, my culture, my foundation.

by Valérie Racine, Editorial Director of Photo Life Magazine

Photo Life Magazine LogoPhoto Life Magazine
Tel: 1.800.905.7468
Subscriptions: 1.800.461.7468

One of our newest sponsors, Photo Life Magazine is sponsoring the 2012 12×12 with:

  • 60 magazines with special subscription rates via promo codes for the 2012 participants
  • Promotion of 12×12 through the magazine, blog, and social media
  • 120×240 banner ad on for one full month (value: $700)

Foundation by Beau Photo

My real life surroundings with the re-bar looking like a digital skeleton coming up from the ground…

People say that downtown Vancouver is more and more becoming an urban jungle, and this photo shows that very clearly. Tree roots are being replaced with concrete foundations which demonstrates, like in all urban environments, that man has firmly taken over control of the growth and shape of the landscape from nature. The ever changing setting grows vertically as it should, but with concrete towers instead of trees. What used to be a forest that sustained a variety of fauna is now a forest of glass high-rises, accommodating people in compartmentalized living. As an urban Vancouver dweller, this is the foundation of my landscape.

by Nicole Langdon-Davies, Film & Analog Department of Beau Photo

Beau Photo LogoBeau Photo Supplies
1520 W. 6th Ave, Vancouver
Tel: 604.734.7771 

Beau Photo has been a supporter of 12×12 since 2009 and for the 2012 cycle, is generously sponsoring us with:

  • Film and cassettes for all of this year’s marathoners. Thanks to Beau Photo, Ilford has also come on board and offered us the necessary HP5+ Black & White film, which Beau Photo has custom-rolled for us
  • Two $50 Rental Certificates
  • The loan of lighting equipment for a special perk that we are currently working on for our 2012 marathoners!

Foundation by Coffeebar

Billions of cups of coffee are consumed around the world every day, making coffee beans one of the most traded commodities; and every day, millions of farmers work extremely hard as they depend on coffee for their source of income. Yet when the beans travel a long way from home to be brewed into that cup of fragrant liquid gold we are familiar with, we often neglect its journey and origin as we emphasize on speed and quantity while we wait in line for that morning kick-start on our way to work.

The cultivation of coffee beans is a long and labor-intensive process, comparable to that of rice. The coffee plant can take up to seven years to grow and requires strict conditions and constant attention. They are therefore susceptible to pests and weather changes. The result of a good harvest, however, is nothing short of gratifying; like wines of different regions, coffee beans produced from different farms can take on the flavours of the soil and have their own unique taste. A distinct taste pertaining to a distinct origin, what better way to build a solid foundation for coffee? As our culture begins to appreciate the fine tasting and proper brewing of coffee, it is crucial for us to understand the foundations of coffee beans. It really helps us bring a little bit more romance into the cup, and a little bit more appreciation to our morning coffee.

Coffee can be a grab-and-go, but with all the hard labor involved in bringing those amazing flavours into the cup, it should be a treat. I make coffee for people most days, but when I’m not and the weather allows, I sit at a coffeeshop and look at the rain. Falling. And I remember other rains from different skies. Mountain fog descending and lifting like a dream, drinking single-origin coffee from the origin itself – in a small town, in the northern sierra of Mexico, through cobblestone streets and the rich palette of color surrounding everything; and the farmer – whose name escapes me now, but who still tells his story and the story of this town through his coffee. This beautiful, colorful, hidden treasure of a town, whose name will never escape me: Cuetzalan.

by Christine Delano, Manager of Coffeebar

Coffeebar LogoCoffeebar
10 Water Street, Vancouver (Gastown)
Tel: 604.566.9693

Coming on board this year, Coffeebar is officially the:

  • Venue for the 2012 12×12 Vancouver Photo Marathon on Saturday August 18th

Also part of our wonderful family of sponsors:

CustomColor LogoCustomColor Professional Imaging Lab
1123 Venables Street, Vancouver
Tel: 604.681.4680

Have you ever noticed how your lab always sends your black & white film out for development? Well, CustomColor Professional Imaging Lab is one of the few places in Vancouver where these orders go. It’s also the place professional photographers frequent to get the results they want. For 2012, our marathoners are getting nothing but the best. CustomColor is sponsoring the 12×12 with:

  • The processing of all the film rolls from the marathon
  • 4″x6″ prints of all the photos processed for the Raw Talent 2012 exhibit
  • Digital scanning for all the exhibit photos to upload to our Flickr account

City of Vancouver LogoCity of Vancouver
City of Vancouver Art & Cultural Activities
City of Vancouver Events Calendar

As our newest sponsor, the City of Vancouver is sponsoring this year’s 12×12 with:

  • A dramatically subsidized rental fee for the use of the magnificent heritage Salt Building in The Village on  False Creek for Raw Talent 2012. Without the extremely generous support from the City of Vancouver, the exhibit venue would have cost us $10,000, something we would have never been able to afford without them.

Tel: 1.888.33.LYNDA

A supporter since 2011, is supporting this year’s marathon with:

  • A cheque in the amount of $500
  • A 1-year premium subscription membership
  • 1-month free subscriptions for all 60 of our marathoners
  • DVD titles from their collection of courses

Six Cent Press Logo

Six Cent Press
1880 Powell Street, Vancouver
Tel: 604.216.0405

A 12×12 supporter since 2010, Six Cent Press has sponsored us with:

  • 100 twin sets of their custom 1.25″ buttons with packaging, a very special commemorative and collectible memento of 12×12

It goes without saying that we owe much of our success to all of our generous and supportive sponsors. Hence the selection of “Foundation” as the theme for the Sponsor Challenge. Without this solid foundation, there would be no 12×12. We share a special connection with everyone we work with to bring you this annual event. We hope you are as proud of it as we are ♥

Learning for the Learned – from Pearson

Posted by on October 14, 2010 at 11:00 am.

Like last year, our good friends at Pearson Technology Group (follow them on Twitter @ptgcanada) have once again shipped us a box of photo books for our winners. For those who don’t know, Pearson is the mothership that drives well known educational book series like the Sams (Teach Yourself) and QUE to name a couple. But what many people don’t know is that they also have a huge lineup of books and other educational materials for creative professionals, photographers included.

The books will be handed out to the winners at Raw Talent 2010. But even if you don’t win one you should take the time to check them out – they are pretty damn good reading:

From Still to Motion: A Photographer’s Guide to Creating Video with Your DSLR

by James Ball, Robbie Carman, Matt Gottshalk and Richard Harrington

With the arrival of high-definition video-enabled DSLR cameras, photographers are faced with an opportunity for creativity and a competitive edge in their field unlike anything they’ve experienced before. Add to that the expanding demands from a video-hungry audience and it’s no longer a matter of if you are going to add video to your repertoire of skills, it’s when.

Here to guide you in a thorough exploration of the video-making process — from preproduction to post — and to ease your transition from still to motion are four veterans who speak the language of both photography and video fluently. With their clear, instructive approach, they quickly get you up to speed on everything from picking your gear, to properly lighting for motion, to using professional-level audio, color correction, and editing techniques, to media management and outputting, and much more. Here are just a few highlights from this richly illustrated, completely interactive book and DVD:

  • Explores the entire spectrum of video for DSLR camera owners, with recommendations on gear, planning, lighting, lenses, audio, editing, color correcting, exporting, media management, and more.
  • Covers a wide variety of shooting styles, including indoor, outdoor, studio, portrait, event, and available light.
  • Addresses technical challenges associated with DSLR video, such as camera movement, multiple camera coverage, low-light videography, and synchronized sound.
  • Explores additional creative techniques such as stop motion and timelapse photography in depth.
  • Includes a real-world example of a music video and promo package throughout the book to demonstrate concepts in action, with additional profiles of photography experts in nature, sports, commercial, and weddings and events.

The accompanying DVD contains over 6 hours of video training that delves deeper into each topic, as well as high-definition footage, hands-on project  files, and templates to experiment with and follow along.

Vision & Voice: Refining Your Vision in Adobe Photoshop Lightroom

by David duChemin

What if your image could only communicate one thing: one major idea, overarching theme, or driving emotion? If you identified this, you’d discover your vision for that image—the internal, invisible guiding principle that directs both how you capture the image and how you develop it in the digital darkroom.

Without vision, you likely find yourself flailing both behind the camera and in front of the computer—indiscriminately shooting and arbitrarily moving sliders in hopes of stumbling upon something great every once in a while. With vision, you bring direction and intention to both the creation and development of all your images.

Vision & Voice: Refining Your Vision in Adobe Photoshop Lightroom is about identifying your vision and using Lightroom’s Develop module to give voice—that outward expression—to your vision. Photographer David duChemin begins with the fundamentals of a vision-driven workflow, where he discusses everything from vision and style, to the importance of mood and color, to the crucial role of histograms and of getting the best possible digital negative to work with. After demonstrating how the Develop module’s tools affect the aesthetics of your image, duChemin then offers a straightforward approach to developing your images in accordance with your own personal vision: identify your intention, minimize the distractions, maximize the mood, and draw the viewer’s eye—all while leaving room for play and serendipity. Finally, duChemin applies this approach to 20 of his photographs as he takes you into his own digital darkroom and, beginning with the original RAW file, works step by step through the development of the final image.

Visual Poetry: A Creative Guide for Making Engaging Digital Photographs

by Chris Orwig

A great photograph has the potential to transcend verbal and written language. But how do you create these photographs? It’s not the how that’s important, but the who and the what. Who you are as a person has a direct impact on what you capture as a photographer.

Whether you are an amateur or professional, architect or acupuncturist, physician or photographer, this guide provides inspiration, simple techniques, and assignments to boost your creative process and improve your digital images using natural light without additional gear.

Chris Orwig’s insights—to reduce and simplify, participate rather than critique, and capture a story—have made him an immensely popular workshop speaker and faculty member at the prestigious Brooks Institute. His engaging stories presented as lessons follow his classroom approach and highlight what students say is his contagious passion for life.

Captured by the Light: The Essential Guide to Creating Extraordinary Wedding Photography

by David Ziser


World-renowned wedding photographer, and one of the most widely acclaimed instructors in the industry today, David Ziser brings his no-nonsense, straight-to-the-point teaching style to a book that totally rewrites the rules for how wedding photography is taught.

This groundbreaking new book is the first of its kind to focus on the exact areas that wedding photographers have been begging a top pro like David to cover, including how to create professional quality light and beautiful images in every situation, how to compose wedding images that sell, and how to create amazing images in the limited time and at the fast pace of a wedding.

But David doesn’t just stop there. He covers every aspect of what today’s brides and wedding couples want from a wedding photographer, including poses that work every time and can’t-miss lighting setups you can use again and again, and everything is laid out in a brilliant step-by-step method that makes learning these techniques so easy, you’ll be able to pull off these same looks yourself (without spending thousands on expensive equipment). Plus, the book is packed with David’s tricks of the trade that he’s picked up in a career shooting all over the world.

The Photoshop CS3/CS4 Wow! Book

by Linnea Dayton and Cristen Gillespie

Ever since Photoshop version 2.5, The Photoshop Wow! Book has enlightened and inspired graphic designers, illustrators, and photographers around the globe. This newest edition delivers the familiar award-winning mix of explanations and step-by-step tutorials for creating both commercial and fine-art images, with a DVD-ROM full of tutorial files and other goodies. Tips and beautiful galleries distinguish this book as the most inspiring Photoshop resource around. Designed for easy reference, The Photoshop CS3/CS4 Wow! Book includes short features in which professional photographers and designers let you in on their creative secrets for quick solutions. You’ll learn the most innovative techniques for creating and enhancing images, graphics, and type.

  • Use these techniques with Photoshop CS3 and CS4; most fundamental techniques also work with Photoshop CS5
  • Use the new and improved features in Photoshop CS3 and CS4, including Smart Filters, the Quick Selection tool, the new Black & White and Vibrance adjustments, the Refine Edge command, the Clone Source panel, the Adjustments and Masks panels, and video, animation, 3D, and Analysis features in Photoshop Extended, as well as improvements to Bridge and Camera Raw
  • Build your skill with familiar Photoshop features such as blend modes, Adjustment layers, channels, filters, Actions, and Layer Styles
  • Focus attention on the subject of a photo, retouch a portrait, tint an image, or convert a color image to black-and-white
  • Bring out your inner artist with Photoshop’s sophisticated brushes and vector-drawing tools
  • Create dazzling special effects for type and graphics
  • Keep your creations organized with layers, groups, Smart Objects, and layer comps

The Hot Shoe Diaries: Big Light from Small Flashes

by Joe McNally

After spending more than thirty years behind the lens—working for National Geographic, Time, Life, and Sports Illustrated—Joe McNally knows about light. He knows how to talk about it, shape it, color it, control it, and direct it. Most importantly, he knows how to create it…using small hot shoe flashes.

In The Hot Shoe Diaries, Joe brings you behind the scenes to candidly share his lighting solutions for a ton of great images. Using Nikon Speedlights, Joe lets you in on his uncensored thought process—often funny, sometimes serious, always fascinating—to demonstrate how he makes his pictures with these small flashes. Whether he’s photographing a gymnast on the Great Wall, an alligator in a swamp, or a fire truck careening through Times Square, Joe uses these flashes to create great light that makes his pictures sing.

Adobe Photoshop CS5 Classroom in a Book

by Adobe Creative Team

Creative professionals seeking the fastest, easiest, most comprehensive way to learn Adobe Photoshop CS5 choose Adobe Photoshop CS5 Classroom in a Book from the Adobe Creative Team at Adobe Press. The 14 project-based lessons in this book show readers step-by-step the key techniques for working in Photoshop CS5.

In addition to learning the key elements of the Photoshop interface, this completely revised CS5 edition shows readers how to edit images with precise selection control, correct a wide range of lens-based errors, interactively transform their images with the new Puppet Warp tool, and easily remove or replace image elements with the new Content-Aware Fill mode. The book also covers new powerful painting effects to artistically enhance images and shows how to combine multiple exposures into a single HDR image.

For the first time, the companion DVD will feature, in addition to the lesson files, 2 hours of free video tutorials from Learn Adobe Photoshop CS5 by Video by Adobe Press and video2brain, a great added value!

“The Classroom in a Book series is by far the best training material on the market. Everything you need to master the software is included: clear explanations of each lesson, step-by-step instructions, and the project files for the students.” —Barbara Binder, Adobe Certified Instructor, Rocky Mountain Training

Classroom in a Book®, the best-selling series of hands-on software training workbooks, helps you learn the features of Adobe software quickly and easily. Classroom in a Book offers what no other book or training program does—an official training series from Adobe Systems Incorporated, developed with the support of Adobe product experts.

Real World Camera Raw with Adobe Photoshop CS5

by Jeff Schewe and Bruce Fraser

Today serious photographers shoot raw images only. Real World Camera Raw with Adobe Photoshop was the first book devoted exclusively to the topic, explaining the advantages and challenges of using Adobe Camera Raw to produce magnificent images. Real World Camera Raw in Adobe Photoshop CS5 keeps pace with new directions in digital photography and raw image processing. Jeff Schewe, a contributor to the development of Adobe Camera Raw from its beginnings, updates Bruce Fraser’s bestselling book with insider knowledge of how new features let photographers optimize and convert images for the best results in Adobe Photoshop CS5.

Hands-on techniques show readers how to expose and shoot for raw image capture as well as use features such as the Adjustment Brush and the Graduated Filter and the new and improved Noise Reduction, Perspective Crop, and automatic Lens Correction. Readers will also learn how to use the latest version of Adobe Bridge to manage the thousands of images–and gigabytes of data–that result from shooting in raw.

This edition:

  • Builds on the latest version of Camera Raw to extend control over your digital camera’s raw file format to produce the best quality images.
  • Shows you how to take advantage of new features in Adobe Bridge CS5 to select, sort, annotate, and edit thousands of raw images quickly and efficiently.
  • Guides you in developing an efficient raw workflow incorporating Adobe Photoshop CS5, Camera Raw 6, and Bridge CS5

About Pearson

Pearson Technology Group Canada (PTGC) is the premier distributor of books and training materials for today’s business and IT professional. PTGC represents the publishing industry’s leading imprints for authoritative and cutting edge technical and professional information. Our imprints include: Financial Times Press,Addison-Wesley, Prentice-Hall Professional, Cisco Press, Peachpit Press, Que Publishing, and Sams Publishing. In addition PTGC has corporate alliances with Cisco Systems, Adobe Systems, Sun, and IBM.

PTGC is a division of Pearson Education Canada, one of the global education publishing business of Pearson plc., the international media group.

You can get more information about Pearson and their extensive lineup of educational products (including Morten’s two books) check out their Canadian website. You can also follow them on Twitter @ptgcanada for the latest updates. Remember to check out their huge selection of books, DVDs and other learning materials for creative professionals by visiting

We are thrilled to have Pearson on board as a sponsor and hugely jealous of the winners who get to walk away with these fantastic books.

Great Photos Deserve Canvas

Posted by on October 4, 2010 at 9:00 am.

Artwork by Suzanne Kay

When it comes to photography, there is something to be said for size. Seeing a great photo enlarged to fill your field of vision does something to your perception of the image portrayed. There are few mediums more fit for displaying photographic art than real art canvas. The texture created by tightly woven fibres melding with pigments gives stills an incomparable organic undertone.

Opus Art & Design Media – the newest location for Opus Framing and Art Supplies in Downtown Vancouver – takes canvas printing very seriously. The store caters to professional artists and galleries in addition to amateurs and enthusiasts and prides itself in offering only the best gallery quality Giclée prints. For the second year in a row, Opus is providing 24” x 36” stretched canvas prints for our top winners because great photos deserve canvas. Here is Suzanne Kay on why the best art supply store in Vancouver is such a strong supporter of 12×12.

We introduced you to Opus Framing & Art Supplies and their canvas printing services in advance of Raw Talent 2009 but Opus doesn’t just offer printing, canvas stretching and framing services. They also sell a variety of coatings to further enhance the appearance of Giclée prints. Canvas printers are in reality extremely high quality inkjet printers that can render digital images onto all sorts of media including archival canvas. The nature of inkjet printing ink is that it comes out as a matte coat. As such, dark colours and blacks are not as dark as they can be because matte surfaces tend to reflect a certain amount of light. Depending on the original medium the image was created in and the intended effect, this can be both a plus and a minus. In many cases the matte effect is what is desired. But in others, like that of photos, the artist may want a different finish, either glossy or even with some texture to it. The same goes for painters who are printing reproductions and mixed-media artists who use the Giclée prints as a base for further artistic expression.

Different Giclée Print Coatings

For these artists, the Giclée print is but the first step of the process. Upon receiving a stretched canvas print, they will go on to apply one of the many available post-print coatings that provide either a base for further work or a permanent final coat for the image that brings out the colours or adds texture where none was before. These coats, applied by hand with a brush, range from basic matte, semi-gloss or high-gloss varnishes, to gel coats that are either self-levelling or moldable. The coats are applied by the print owner and opens a world of new posibilities for its final appearance. For photos, a simple semi-gloss or high-gloss varnish or a self-levelling gel will bring out the depth of dark tones and give the print a shine not unlike that of an acrylic painting. For painters and photographers with an artistic flare, the acrylic gel coats and adhesive coats open the door for adding brush stroke effects and even new coats of paint or other artistic media.

Varnish and Top-Coat Options for Digital Prints

Golden Archival Spray Varnish: This comes in gloss, satin and matter finishes and has the addition of a UV block. Apply 6 to 8 thin coats, allowing each layer to dry for at least ½ hour in between. This creates a very smooth, even surface which will protect your piece from scratching and environmental dirt and acidity. This varnish is a final coat and should not be painted on top of. Easy to use, but takes several hours to complete.

Liquitex Gloss Varnish and Medium: This is a brush-on varnish that goes on easily to provide a gloss finish to your piece. Brush on the first layer with a soft synthetic brush and let it completely dry. Brush on the second layer in the opposite direction (i.e. if you first coat went on across the width of the piece, the second coat should be brushed on the length of the piece). More layers can be applied if desired, but isn’t necessary. You can paint on top of this medium with excellent adhesion. Easy to use and doesn’t take too long.

Golden Digital Topcoat: This is a brush-on topcoat that comes in Gloss and Semi- gloss and has the addition of a UV block. Brush on the first layer with a soft synthetic brush and let it completely dry. Brush on the second layer in the opposite direction. More layers can be applied if desired, but isn’t necessary. You can paint on top of this medium with excellent adhesion. Easy to use and doesn’t take too long.

Golden Self-levelling Gel: This is a medium that can be poured on, or brushed on your piece. It is flexible, has a high shine, is very smooth and glass-like with a similar appearance to a resin coat. You can paint on top of this medium with excellent adhesion. Easy to use and doesn’t take too long. Ideally, a final varnish coat should be used to increase longevity of the piece, but is not completely necessary.

Acrylic Gel (available in various thicknesses, and several brands): This is a great application to add surface texture to your piece. You can apply a gel in “creative” brush strokes to accent texture (i.e. brush strokes of a painting) or emphasize movement (i.e. adding texture to crashing waves). You can paint on top of this medium with excellent adhesion. Easy to use and doesn’t take too long. Ideally, a final varnish coat should be used to increase longevity of the piece, but is not completely necessary.

Key Things to Keep in Mind When Choosing a Topcoat for Your Digital Print:

  • Gloss will deepen and slightly darken your colours
  • Matte will slightly lighten and flatten your colours
  • Brush-on matte topcoats can look streaky and semi-opaque on dark areas
  • If you are planning to stretch your canvas print yourself, you should topcoat the piece first as it will reduce the possibility of scratching and abrading the print

All of these varnishes, topcoats and gels can be purchased from any Opus store. Please check for more product information and pricing.

Keeping Film (and 12×12) Alive

Posted by on September 23, 2010 at 9:29 am.

There was never a question that film would be the medium used for the 12×12 Vancouver Photo Marathon. It seemed a sound idea at the time but we quickly discovered that film (and in particular, 12 exposure film) for all its amazing qualities, is a dying technology. A call to Kodak Canada all but confirmed it, especially when the person on the other end of the line started referring to a “Death List” for the different types of film the company produces. So what we thought would be one of the simplest tasks – procuring film and development – started looking like one of the trickiest. As those of you who have followed this story from the beginning know, actually getting a hold of 60 rolls of 12 exposure film for the event turned into a nail biter and we were only able to get the last 20 rolls for 2009 the day before the marathon. Our rescuer? London Drugs. Not only that, they also came forward to cover the cost of all our development, scanning, printing, and even provided enlargements for our theme winners!

For 2010, London Drugs stepped up well in advance of the event and offered not only to take on development and printing as the year before, but also to provide all the film for the event. This kind of support is invaluable for an event like ours. So why would a big company like that want to support such a project? Well, it may surprise you to learn that its President and CEO Wynne Powell is an avid photographer and that many of the photos you see blown up in huge prints around the stores are actually taken by him. London Drugs still does full in-house film development and printing, not only of 35mm film but also 110, APS and more. They even print from 120 film, the development of which has to be sent out due to its delicate nature and complicated preparation process. Judging by the overall trend towards digital as the only photographic medium, it seems like London Drugs’ promise of sticking with film for the long haul might very well mean it could become one of the rare places where you can get your rolls developed in the future.

All the rolls for the 2010 12×12 have been shot, developed, scanned, printed and are as you read this, being adjudicated by our panel of judges which includes ET Canada’s Erin Cebula, VPW Director Marc Koegel, the dynamic duo of Adam & Kev from Adam & Kev Photography, and 12×12 Committee member John Biehler. Come October 16th, you will see the 700+ prints on the walls of Vancouver Photo Workshops – for one night only. It will be a gala event you will not want to miss.

Six Cent Presses Our Buttons

Posted by on September 10, 2010 at 12:07 pm.

No event is complete without some cool custom swag, so during the planning stages of the 2010 event we sat down to discuss what kind of commemorative token we could hand out to all the participants. Personally I was all about the custom t-shirt, but they can be both expensive and hard to manage because people come in all shapes and sizes and genders. Then someone had a great idea: What about some cool buttons? The idea stuck and soon we were on the lookout for someone who could turn out a couple of hundred buttons for us within our extremely limited budget. Not an easy task. At least until…

Six Cent Press Presses Play

We’d heard good things about this local Vancouver company called Six Cent Press so we decided to send them an email and see if they wanted to play with us. And boy did they ever. Not only were they willing to take on our crazy button ideas, but they were doing it for free! We would provide the designs and they would run four hundred buttons in two different styles for all of our participants and others interested. And all the buttons would be mounted on custom cards, making them a collectors’ item. Very cool.

We got to work and soon had two different button designs: The 12×12 logo you see above and a secret custom button that will be unveiled at the event on September 12th, 2010.  The designs were packaged and sent through the ether to Levi and his team, and a few short days later we got a call that the buttons were ready to go.

Levi from Six Cent Press

Meet Levi – The Button Master

Entering the doors of Six Cent Press on the east side of Vancouver we were met by Levi Doerntlein – artist and button maker extraordinaire. He told us Six Cent Press started off as a side project while he was working as an artist and quickly grew to a big production facility. Their main clientele these days is big businesses looking for a cheap and easy way of doing branding and they now turn out millions of custom pin back buttons each year. And because business is booming and they are such cool people, they take on not-for-profit projects like ours just for fun.

Buttons for One and All

Thanks to Levi and Six Cent Press we have a box full of buttons itching to get pinned on camera bags, jackets and whatever else you would pin a pin onto. Each of our 60 marathoners will get one of each of the custom buttons to wear so when you stroll through downtown Vancouver Sunday September 12th and you see someone clutching a camera and wearing a 12×12 pin, you know what they are doing.

A Gorilla-pod of a Giveaway!

Posted by on August 31, 2010 at 9:53 am.

A camera is only as good as its support. Well, that won’t be a problem for the two main prize winners in this year’s 12×12 Vancouver Photo Marathon. Our most recent sponsor Joby (creators of the amazing Gorillapods) is handing over two of their covetted Gorillapod Focus with the new and very cool Ballhead Xes attached for our two main prize winners so they can safely place their cameras pretty much anywhere. But that’s not all! In addition, they are giving us a set of Gorillapod Originals to give away! So even if you’re not part of this year’s 12×12 you can still walk away with a Gorillapod of your very own. Oh yeah!

How to Enter

To qualify for the Gorillapod Original giveaway, all you have to do is follow @jobyinc and @12x12yvr on Twitter and Tweet the message below or another message that contains the @jobyinc and @12x12yvr handles and mentions Gorillapod.

No photog should be without a Gorillapod. Follow @JobyInc + @12x12yvr & RT this for ur chance to win one!

Not-so-Small Print: Tweeting the message above and entering the contest does not guarantee a prize. Winners will be selected during the 12×12 Vancouver Photo Marathon on September 12, 2010 by a random draw from the pool of tweets posted. You must have an active Twitter account to be eligible. Winners must be able to come to the event location (Blenz Coffee in Yaletown: 338 Helmcken St, Vancouver) on September 12, 2010 between 8am and 8pm to pick up the prize. Prizes not picked up on event day will go back in the pool for a secondary draw.

Morten was lucky enough to get his hands and cameras on every Gorillapod available last year during his 6 week roundtrip around the USA and tested them extensively. You can read his review of the full line over at Design is Philosophy. Below is an ammended version focussing on the Focus, Ballhead X and Original for your reading pleasure.

Gorillapod Focus + Ballhead X = All the support you’ll ever need (within reason)

While the Focus distracted security, the SLR-Zoom made its move...

At the top of the foodchain in the Gorillapod family you find the Gorillapod Focus, a massive steel contraption that looks more like something dropped from an alien spaceship than a camera support. In addition to being a sturdy addition to your camera kit, it offers some excellent entertainment, especially while passing through airport security. I had it stuffed in my backpack when I went to the Smithsonian museum in Washington D.C. and they forced me to take it out of my bag and demonstrate it to the guard before he would let me in. Once he saw what my three-legged friend was all about his first question was: “Where can I get one?”

The Focus is a solid piece of engineering, significantly larger in every way than the other plastic-based pods, and also weighs more than the other pods because all the joints are metal. In return, you get support for cameras up to 5kg which means it can handle pro-level DSLRs with massive lenses and even standard video fluid head and a prosumer video camera without any problems. That, in turn means you can now hang your expensive photo or video gear from a fence, put it up on tree branches, strap it to your car, or hang it from lamp posts without worrying that it’ll fall down. Any photographer will tell you that is pretty damn awesome.

A new and very welcome addition to the Focus is the new Ballhead X – a monster version of the original ballhead that ships with the SLR-Zoom. The Ballhead X features separate tightening bolts for the X and Y axis providing complete control of both where the camera is pointing and how tilted it is. The base plate also complies with the Arca-Swiss system so if you have other Arca-Swiss clamps you won’t have to change the mount around. This new ballhead is a welcome addition to the Focus. I pilfered the ballhead off the SLR-Zoom and matched it with my Focus but I found it to be a bit wonky both because one knob controlled both the X and Y axis and also because it was clearly never meant to handle something as heavy as my camera. The Ballhead X on the other hand is rated for up to 5 kg just like the Focus so it looks like what I asked for in my original review was made to order.

Gorillapod Original: A Great Companion for Your Point-and-Shoot

The Gorillapod Original is tiny – about the length of my open hand – and extremely flexible so it’s easy for storage. This makes sense seeing as it’s designed to hold small point-and-shoot cameras. It has an articulating joint above the legs which enables you to tilt the camera  in relation to the base of the pod when you start mounting it in weird spots that are not level. The Gorillapod takes up to 325g which means it can handle most point-and-shoot cameras as long as they don’t have massive protruding lenses. Right now ours is holding a Nikon Coolpix P6000 without any problems and that’s a fairly large point-and-shoot so smaller cameras should be no problem at all.

Because it is so tiny and versitile I’d say it is probably the best companion to a point-and-shoot I can think of. With the Gorillapod in hand you can easily improve on the dreaded MySpace pose and also place or hang your camera in places you never could before, making for some great angles and shots.

Oh and I almost forgot, the Gorillapod Original comes in 7 colours (grey, yellow, red, green, blue, pink and orange) just for the hell of it. Mine is grey which I have to admit I’m perfectly fine with. We’ll tell you what colours we’ll be giving away once we get the pods in house.

Exposure at PhotoHaus Gallery

Posted by on August 26, 2010 at 9:52 pm.

If you attended Raw Talent: The 12×12 Vancouver Photo Marathon Exhibit, you know that the awesome folks at the Vancouver Photo Workshops sponsored us with their amazing space to showcase all of the photographs taken during the inaugural 12×12 Vancouver Photo Marathon. You may have met Marc Koegel as you were wandering through the grand halls of the VPW but in case you didn’t, here he is. We are so very proud to introduce you all to the director of the Vancouver Photo Workshops, who has been inspired to create a program that all of you will want to read about after you watch the video!

You know the Not-Enough-Experience Conundrum? When you apply for a job you know you can do better than anyone else but don’t have a chance of getting because you don’t have years of experience under your belt? It is such a universal stumbling block that it affects pretty much any career field you can think of, including that of photography. Everyone needs a start somewhere and Marc Koegel has come up with a program that offers up-and-coming photographers an invaluable stepping stone into their careers.

As the director of and an instructor at the Vancouver Photo Workshops, Marc is surrounded by amazing talent every day and it often reminds him of his own start in the business. His first works were displayed on the walls of Exposure Gallery and he had such great success that its curator Ian McGuffie went on to showcase his photography in more than 20 other shows in the years to follow. A great friendship was made and a career jump started.

With Exposure Gallery’s doors now closed, the cogs in Marc’s artistic brain began to turn. Since moving the Vancouver Photo Workshops to its West 7th location, he’s enjoyed putting together several impromptu shows, including the largest one the venue has ever hosted, Raw Talent on January 16th, 2010. With nearly 700 photographs dotting the over 7,000 sq ft of space that is the VPW and over 300 art lovers visiting on opening night alone, the venue’s true potential became abundantly clear and PhotoHaus Gallery was born.

The only Vancouver gallery that will now exclusively showcase the medium of photography, PhotoHaus Gallery will not only exhibit single professional photographers but will also begin holding regular group shows for new artists beginning in September. So if you are ready for your first exhibit, you can pay a nominal fee to submit your photo(s) for consideration. That’s all that needs to be done. There is no membership fee, no prior experience is required, nor a CV. Your work will speak for you and if selected by the panel of judges, will hang proudly amongst the artwork of your peers to be exposed to the general public. And you will indeed be proud, with guest judges such as Texas’ Arthur Meyerson and New York’s Joe McNally in the mix!

Each exhibit will encompass a different idea so photographers from all walks of life will be challenged with such themes as the Holga Show, the Cheap Camera Show, the Digital Artistry Show, and of course, our favourite: Film.

PhotoHaus Gallery will also offer printing and frame rental services, which gives new artists a more affordable alternative when preparing for their exhibit. This, in addition to the premium custom lighting setup will ensure that your first showcase is as professional as any art gallery out there.

Want to know what lies in store for you? Come check out the 2nd annual 12×12 Vancouver Photo Marathon photo exhibit on Saturday October 16th, 2010. It’s free and will be held at PhotoHaus Gallery, which also serves as the Vancouver Photo Workshops at 14 West 7th Avenue, Vancouver. Whether you are a true beginner, aspiring amateur or seasoned professional, the VPW’s intimate and focused seminars, workshops, and courses will help you achieve your vision. For details and start dates, click here.