Artwork by Marissa Grondin

Degeneration - Artwork by Marissa Grondin - Photography by Ian Harding

My lack of posts lately means only one thing; I’m busy. Its a pretty typical statement on photography blogs though, so I apologize for being like everyone else. But let’s face it, being busy is a good thing (most of the time).

I recently completed a project in which I got to photograph the artwork of Marissa Grondin. She is an incredibly talented mixed media artist working out of Calgary whose work I absolutely love. I’m typically photographing people, so to photograph her artwork was a fun and welcomed challenge. And of course, one artist helping another is always a bonus.

Photographing Marissa’s work wasn’t an easy task though, because her work was not all 2-dimensional. She uses a variety of media to bring her work to life and off the canvas, so with that came the challenge of many reflections and shadows. I used two Elinchrom BX500Ri heads on either side for my starting point. Then I adjusted the lights back and forth towards the plane of the artwork until the piece was evenly lit on both sides with zero glare. For many pieces, the resulting highlights and shadows were acceptable and didn’t need to be completely eliminated, since the artwork was 3D and I wanted to ensure that my 2D photographs interpreted what the actual piece looked like.

The overall key to photographing art? Reduce the angle in which the light is reflecting off it’s surface. If you’re getting glare on your artwork, it means the angle in which the light is entering the lens is the same angle that the source light is hitting the artwork. Just like I mentioned above, the solution is to move your light source(s) closer to the plane of the artwork. I should also mention that the room I was shooting in was completely black with no ambient light, as I needed to ensure there were zero reflections.

A couple of helpful resources that I utilized before shooting were an article by Matt Greer titled How To Photograph Artwork and a video by Tyler Stalman.

And lastly, I couldn’t write about Marissa without plugging her work. Go check out Marissa Grondin on Society6 where you can purchase prints and other merchandise.

Calgary Peace Bridge In Canadian Architect Magazine

Ian Harding Photography - Calgary Peace Bridge in Canadian Architect Magazine 2012

Quick post: Another publication that ran my photograph of the Calgary Peace Bridge is Canada’s only monthly design publication, Canadian Architect. It features articles on current practice, building technology, and social issues affecting architecture across Canada. I really like how this one turned out.

Chinese Superhero Composite

Chinese Female Superhero by Ian Harding Photography

Quick photo: I’m a huge fan of photographers like Joel Grimes and Dean Bradshaw. Their understanding of light and how to pull together images taken at different times is considered masterful by many. Not everyone can pull it off well, but I’ve been eager to try my hand at it to see what I can do. This is one of my first. What do you think?

Calgary Peace Bridge In ELLE Decor Magazine

Ian Harding Photography - Calgary Peace Bridge in ELLE Decor Magazine   Ian Harding Photography - Calgary Peace Bridge in ELLE Decor Magazine

Back on March 24, my friend Tim and I attended the grand opening of a new bridge here in Calgary. I grabbed a few photos and made sure to get them online the same day. I knew that if I got my images online quickly, they would have a greater chance of getting exposure than the hundreds of images that were to follow (there were so many people with DSLR cameras there that day, Tim and I laughed stating that DSLR’s are the new point-and-shoot). Since that day, the Peace Bridge has become a hot spot for all types of photographers, from fashion and editorial, to family and wedding, and hundreds of photographs of the bridge have been uploaded to the web.

I am happy to say that as I hoped they would, my photos became quite popular right off the bat. So popular in fact that within weeks of posting them, I had websites and publications from all over the globe contacting me to use them. Canada, United States, India, Germany. I couldn’t believe it.

The bridge was the talk of the architectural community and my photographs of the bridge were the visual aid to those not living in Calgary. I’m going to showcase some of them here as separate posts, with the first being ELLE Decor Magazine. With more than two million readers extended over five continents, this was the biggest.

Ian Harding Photography - Calgary Peace Bridge in ELLE Decor Magazine

Canadian Photographers Now Own The Copyright

Ian Harding Photography - Canadian Copyright 2012

Today is a huge day for photographers in Canada. Taking effect this morning, Bill C-11 (PDF) now states that a Canadian photographer owns the copyright to their images, regardless of whether or not they were commissioned by a third party.

Previously, if a photographer was compensated for the creation of an image, the individual or business paying the photographer owned the copyright. Unless, of course, there was a contract in place stating that the photographer was to maintain copyright ownership. The reality, however, was that many photographers in Canada were not aware of this law and were unknowingly handing over ownership to their clients.

More specifically, section 13(2) of the Canadian Copyright Act singled out photography as being different than other creative works.

(2) Where, in the case of an engraving, photograph or portrait, the plate or other original was ordered by some other person and was made for valuable consideration, and the consideration was paid, in pursuance of that order, in the absence of any agreement to the contrary, the person by whom the plate or other original was ordered shall be the first owner of the copyright.

Under the new bill effective today, photographers are now on equal level with other artists and creative works when it comes to copyright ownership.

CAPIC, The Canadian Association of Professional Image Creators, calls it “A Great Victory For Canadian Photographers”, having fought this battle for more than 20 years. I am truly thankful to everyone at CAPIC and beyond who has put in time and effort to make this a reality for us all. I have had my share of legal conflicts and disputes with individuals and organizations (I won’t name any names, even though I would love to), but as of today, photography in Canada has changed for the better.

André Cornellier, Copyright Chair of CAPIC states, “In Canada, all other artists have already owned the copyrights to their work and thanks to this new law, Canadian photographers, albeit the last in the industrialized world, now have all legal rights to their images.”