INTERNATIONAL ADVENTURES IN PHOTOGRAPHY MEAGHAN OGILVIE’S UNDERWATER WORLDS. JO-ANNE McARTHUR ANIMAL ADVOCATE. KOREAN DREAMS. NATHALIE DAOUST IN NORTH KOREA SAMRA HABIB’S QUEER MUSLIM PROJECT.
TRAVEL TIPS. YOU WON’T EXPECT!
MORE INTERNATIONAL INSPIRATION. THAN EVER!
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MEAGHAN OGILVIE BEHIND THE SHOT: This image was captured in a cenote in Tulum, Mexico in 2018. A cenote is a natural well or reservoir, common in the Yucatán, formed when a limestone surface has collapsed, exposing the water beneath. In modern and ancient Yucatán culture, Chacs—a cult of the rain gods—are associated with cenotes.
IN THIS ISSUE:
PHOTO BOOKS WE LOVE
10 TRAVEL TIPS Travel advice you may not expect 14 THOMAS BRASCH: OUT OF THE DARKNESS 16 NATHALIE DAOUST’S KOREAN DREAMS by Samantha Small 20 ANTON MWEWA: CURIOUS + CANDID by Joshua Cameron 22 MEAGHAN OGILVIE’S UNDERWATER WORLDS by Briar Chaput
28 J O-ANNE McARTHUR: ANIMAL ADVOCATE by Rita Godlevskis 34 SAMRA HABIB “JUST ME AND ALLAH” by Joshua Cameron 30 I NTAC - AN INTERNATIONAL NETWORK by Peter Sramek 40 SAMUEL BOLDUC: FROM MATANE TO LONDON 43 MARIE LOUISE MOUTAFCHIEVA Renaissance Light & Culinary Delights by Nicola Irvin 54 READERS GALLERY Submissions by our readers
“One’s destination is never a place, but always a new way of seeing things.”
EDITOR’S NOTE photo by: www.margaretmulligan.com
INTERNATIONAL INSPIRATION Maybe it’s a restless heart, big dreams, or plain curiosity that drives wanderlust. Whether we come back inspired to go again or more appreciative of where we started, more often than not, when it comes to travel, the reward is greater than the risk.
PHOTOED E IS 10 0% MAGAZIN ANADA! MADE IN C U FOR O Y THANK PORT! P SU R YOU
For this issue, I wanted to share some homegrown photography stories that spanned the globe. Nathalie Daoust’s Korean Dreams series takes us to North Korea, a place not easily accessible. On arriving back home to her darkroom in Berlin, she takes her images to a new level. Award-winning documentary photographer Jo-Anne McArthur travels extensively on a mission to share a message. Her passion for animals drives her to share the good, the bad, and the ugly when it comes to how humans treat and co-exist with animals on a global scale. When it comes to travelling as a photographer, travel itself can sometimes be the hardest part of the project. We asked five Canadian frequent flyers for a few tips, and why they love what they do.
This winter we’re looking forward to staying indoors. Baby, it’s cold outside, so we’re going to make the very most of our cabin fever creativity. We are super excited about some fun events and opportunities we have planned to share even more Canadian photogs’ stories in the months ahead. Follow us on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter, and sign up for our e-newsletter to keep up! Your editor,
Rita Godlevskis email@example.com
@photoedmagazine @PhotoEdCANADA @photoedmagazine
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This issue was made possible with the assistance of The Government of Canada.
FALL 2018 ISSUE #53 ISSN 1708-282X
Rita Godlevskis / firstname.lastname@example.org Ruth Alves Joshua Cameron
Briar Chaput Nicola Irvin Samantha Small Peter Sramek
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Shares an image by local Vancouver photographer:
©Nicole Langdon-Davies - Beau Photo “One of the best parts about travel is the anticipation of using all of the cameras I’ve carefully chosen. This year, I took part in building Arcane Axis — a wizard tower of sorts — at an electronic music festival. Colourful lights at night created a magic that made it come alive. Watching people experience the piece, and documenting it, was extra special, as I had been a part of the tower’s creation.” Shot with a Fujifilm X-T1 camera, Fujifilm XF 23mm f2 R WR lens.
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INTERNATIONAL ADVENTURES As you may already know, we LOVE beautifully printed images, sequenced to take the reader on a journey, through finely crafted presentation. Here are a few Canadian photo books that will take you to new places.
H-HOUR, NORMANDY 1944. by Leslie Hossack, 112 pages, 30×30 cm. The Last Indian Wars, Brezno, Czech Republic © Naomi Harris
Bavarian Festival, Frankenmuth, Michigan, USA © Naomi Harris
Westernstadt Pullman City, Eging am See, Germany © Naomi Harris
by Naomi Harris, 240 pages, 21.2 × 23 cm. In EUSA, Naomi Harris documents people in American-themed places in Europe and European-themed places in America. EUSA is a reaction to the homogenization of European and American cultures, an homage to a heritage that isn’t one’s own. Many of the pictures make it hard to locate when and where they were taken: in the US or somewhere in Europe? EUSA is an ambitious project that raises questions about authenticity, cultural identity, and appropriation.
Available online: www.chapters.indigo.ca or www.photoeye.com/bookstore See more: naomiharris.com
Leslie Hossack’s book explores places of memory and commemoration associated with Operation Overlord, the Normandy Campaign of June August 1944. Divided into four sections – Juno Beach (where Canadian troops landed on June 6, 1944, at 7:45 a.m., H-Hour), Atlantic Wall, Official Telegrams, and War Graves – Leslie’s narrative travels slowly and cumulatively. The book includes images taken at the structural remains of the Atlantic Wall – giant bunkers and fortifications, now hidden by blowing beach sands – and commemorates the graves of soldiers killed throughout Normandy. The story is further elaborated with reproductions of handwritten letters and official telegrams that “regret to inform.” By exploring the human experience of loss in war, she leaves us with more questions than answers.
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TOP TRAVEL TIPS
We asked five of our well-travelled expert photographer friends for their best travel advice. Here is what they had to say.
I never travel without...
I never travel without...
I never travel without...
A good book that is written by someone from the country I am visiting. It gives you a literal insight on the culture.
My lavalier microphone. I never know who I’ll be meeting in my travels, so if I meet someone with an amazing story, I can interview them on the go for future film projects.
My travel kit includes earplugs, an eye mask, and melatonin. Why? Jetlag. I also like to bring my own bitters. Soda and bitters is my drink of choice, however, it’s often not an option, so I carry my own.
The best thing about travel is...
The best thing about travel is...
I love having the opportunity to learn about other cultures and to break down barriers between people. It is one of the best tools for creating global citizens who care about the world they live in and about the impact their actions have in the world. I love how heart- and mind-opening travel can be. I get to see gorgeous new landscapes and meet people from all walks of life. It is a privilege I don’t take for granted.
Lately most of my travel has been road trips, which I really adore. I love travelling with my Shih Tzu sidekick Maggie because when you have a dog you have to put walking into the itinerary so I’m always looking for beautiful places I wouldn’t have visited otherwise for us to hike in. But the best part is pulling into a Walmart parking lot at the end of a long day and jumping into the back of my car, falling asleep within minutes with Maggie by my side. And then to wake up the next day, crawl back into the front seat and drive away all without paying for a hotel room. That’s living!
The best thing about travel is...
I love discovering new cultures and different ways of life. With my camera, I am able to meet people I would normally not. I am also a foodie, so discovering new flavours always puts a smile on my face. Basically, I divide most of my time between feeding my soul and my tummy. My advice for newbie travel photographers...
It’s easier than it seems. You just need to be curious and respectful. Most of the time people will accept you with open arms.
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My advice for newbie travel photographers...
I always encourage new artists, whether they be working in photography, film, or other media, to find what they’re most passionate about. Finding your passions is the key way to make a difference. Art has the potential to change minds and touch hearts and that’s a responsibility we must not take lightly.
My advice for newbie travel photographers...
Do not leave packing until the last minute; you will forget something. Going through airport security when travelling by air can be really stressful if you’re not prepared with your toiletries in a separate bag, ensuring each item is within the airline’s allowance guidelines. Also, bring a few extra Ziploc bags. They always come in handy.
Chelsie Xavier-Blower Wildlife biologist, conservationist, and visual storyteller. Chelsie is also an intern at @sea_legacy
I never travel without...
My journal. It’s amazing how much detail you can forget about a place! Reminiscing about places I’ve seen and experiences I’ve had that have slipped my mind is one of my favourite feelings. Besides photos, reading notes in a journal is one of the best ways to bring all of the memories back. I also never travel without my Swiss army knife. It’s come in handy more times than imaginable! The best thing about travel is...
The adventure of it all! No matter where you go — whether you are travelling somewhere new and experiencing different landscapes, sounds, smells and tastes, or if you are returning to a place that you know and love — it’s always a wondrous feeling. I get butterflies from the excitement of what’s to come on the journey ahead. I live for that feeling. (Super cheesy I know, but hey, it’s true!) My advice for newbie travel photographers...
As a technical tip, I was taught that the ground rule in photography is “f8 and be there.” F8 because it’s a nice aperture to keep things sharp, and be there, well, you’ve got to be there to take that pic! Whether it’s pulling yourself out of bed in the morning before sunrise for morning light, or wondering if you can be bothered to go to that place to shoot that thing… DO IT!
IG: @meaghan_ogilvie I never travel without...
My mask and snorkel. The best thing about travel is...
Everything. From the flight, to the food, to exploring new places, I love it all.
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AN OPEN, VIEWER FRIENDLY FORUM FOR THE BEST IN CANADIAN + INTERNATIONAL CONTEMPORARY VISUAL ARTS, ARCHITECTURE, DESIGN + ART EDUCATION Find us: 3rd floor, 10215 - 112 Street, Edmonton, AB, T5K 1M7 T: 780 426 4180 W: harcourthouse.ab.ca
My advice for newbie travel photographers...
If you’re bringing a lot of gear (drones), do research about the custom taxes of the country you’re entering. You don’t want to get surprised with extra fees. PhotoED • 11
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TOP ROW, LEFT: “Barcelona” (Palau Güell). RIGHT: “Berlin” (Neue Synagoge) CENTRE, LEFT: “Vegas 01” (Mandalay Bay). MIDDLE: “Munich” (Fünf Höfe). RIGHT: “New York” (Fulton Subway Station). BOTTOM ROW, LEFT: “Orlando” (Orlando Medical Centre). RIGHT: “Paris” (Fondation Louis Vuitton).
THOMAS BRASCH OUT OF THE DARKNESS From rage and terror, to survival and resilience THE NUMBER OF DEAD IS IRRELEVANT. Mass violence stems from the misguided belief that random killing and the fear felt by the innocent will rectify a perceived injustice. Motivations for these acts come from a range of beliefs: political, racial, or gender-based terrorism, or random acts of violence due to mental instability. Toronto-based photo artist Thomas Brasch commemorates resiliency by photographing locations that have been bombarded by violence for his Out of the Darkness series. He says, “I take photographs of notable architectural landmarks, found at the affected sites, to create a jewel-like abstraction as a testimony to survival from the darkness. I wanted to show that despite the abhorrent tragedy and irrecoverable loss of human life, resilience and survival can glow from the chaos of rage and terror.” Since 2015, Thomas has been developing and refining his technique. His process includes scouting and researching sites of violence and finding appropriate architecture to symbolize the city site.
“RESILIENCE AND SURVIVAL CAN GLOW FROM THE CHAOS OF RAGE AND TERROR.”
Each final image comes from photographing multiple angles on location with his Canon 6D DSLR camera. After editing to find the best capture and architectural detail, a single frame is manipulated in Adobe Lightroom, Capture One, and Photoshop. Multiple layers are manipulated, there is no set formula, and experimentation is key. However, it is important to keep enough of the detail so that upon close inspection, the viewer can see details such as windows and doorways.
The actual time spent at the computer averages around 12 hours per piece. Nothing is ever done in one sitting. Sometimes hours of work will result in an abandoned project and other times the digital alchemy happens. The final works are printed 40 × 40 inches on high gloss aluminum sheets so that the blacks are solid and the other colours can glow in the reflected light. Thomas intends for viewers to see their reflection as part of the piece. Following two successful exhibitions of his “Vegas,” “Montréal,” and “Barcelona” triptych in Vancouver at the Capture Photography Festival 2018 and in Toronto at the Contact Photography Festival 2018, Thomas is looking forward to sharing his work in group and solo shows in private and public galleries. His longrange plans include exhibitions in the United States and in Europe. Online, Thomas provides viewers a further experience, to augment his aim of transforming the image from a reference to a historical event to a memorial present in our hearts and minds. He notes his personal connection to each location in text and in an audio soundtrack. Here, he reads the long lists of names of those who perished in the event. In this series, each “jewel-like” image represents each city he has visited. Future travel plans include trips within North and South America, including Mexico City and Lima, and ventures to the Middle East and the Eastern Hemisphere. Thomas says, “I have plans to make this a global project. I’m looking to honour the victims of incidents of mass meaningless violence at the hands of mankind.”
thomasbrasch.com PhotoED • 15
NATHALIE DAOUST’S BY SAMANTHA SMALL
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LEFT: SCHOOLING Education is universal and state-funded. According to the CIA, North Korea has a 100 % literacy rate and students have to complete a three-year, 81-hour course on Kim Jong-un. In the 1990s, all teachers were required to pass an accordion test before being able to receive their teaching certificate. RIGHT: THREE GENERATIONS OF PUNISHMENT North Korean law specifies “three generations of punishment.” If you commit a crime, your children and grandchildren will also receive the full brunt of the punishment, which often involves a lifetime in prison. Children born in prison are raised as prisoners because their “blood is guilty.” Instituted in 1950, this law was supposed to eliminate the blood lineage of counterrevolutionary North Koreans after the war.
NATHALIE DAOUST’S photographs reflect a love for eclectic places and a wild, inexhaustible sense of curiosity. Exploring, experiencing, and documenting rarely visited landscapes and carefully hidden places, she has spent the last decade producing voyeuristic insights into otherwise veiled existences.
“I was working on a photo documentary in China about North Korean women living in hiding and working in the sex industry. I wanted to better understand why these women would rather live in such conditions in China than remain in their own country with their friends and family.”
Nathalie studied the technical aspects of photography at the Cégep du Vieux Montréal. Since, she has been travelling the globe seeking to translate her experiences into photography-based artworks. She spent two years experimenting and living in the Carlton Arms Hotel in New York, which led her further abroad to explore Tokyo’s red light district, Brazilian brothels, and Swiss naturists in the Alps.
Nathalie’s images captured in North Korea reveal a country that seems to exist outside of time, as a carefully choreographed mirage. She has spent much of her career exploring the idea of fantasy: the hidden desires and urges that compel people to dream, to dress up, to move beyond the bounds of convention. With Korean Dreams, she is exploring this escapist impulse not as an individual choice, but as a way of life forced upon an entire nation.
Nathalie says, “Since my very first experiments in photography I have been fascinated by human behaviour and its various realities, by the ever-present human desire of living in a dream world.” Nathalie’s latest project, Korean Dreams (2016) is a complex series of 25, 50 × 70 cm prints that reflect the mysterious world of North Korea.
Most foreigners associate North Korea, shrouded by fanatical isolationism, only with the hallmarks of its repressive regime – kidnapping, torture, and forced labour camps. Tourist experiences are carefully crafted to countermand these impressions. Accompanied by guides at all times, and adhering to the rigid, pre-approved travel program, visitors get a highly selective view PhotoED • 17
of the country as they are paraded past cultural landmarks such as theatres, schools, and music halls, meant to create the illusion of a perfect society. The difficulty of reconciling systemic violence and repression with this shiny world led Nathalie to focus on the spaces that exist on the edge of the “tourist zone.” By shooting furtively while travelling between destinations, she was able to capture an alternative narrative. Guided by the notion that North Koreans are residing in a “dream-state,” where truth is not lived but imposed by those in power, her anonymous forms wander through the landscape. From civilians bicycling against an urban backdrop, to military personnel marching stridently in line and schoolchildren staring pensively out of the frame, these figures seem to exist suspended in an ambiguous, timeless dimension. Playing with the line between fiction and reality, Nathalie exposes an indeterminate space where “truth” and “lies” are interchangeable. She says, “The aesthetic of my new project continues this visual exploration at the border between dream and reality, yet this time
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it embraces escapism of a country and the act of losing oneself within it.” Nathalie’s multi-step development process is integral in this series to the interplay between fiction and reality. In the darkroom she reconstructs a forgotten past and an unknown present. The images were taken on 35mm black and white film and have been obscured in her unique photographic process. She creates a “negative” by cutting out her selected frame from its contact sheet and peeling off the back of the photo paper. The breakdown of the original negative film has produced final images that appear indistinct and somewhat ghostlike. As the layers of distance from the original film are removed, a sense of detachment between the photographer and her subjects is revealed. Nathalie’s darkroom method also mimics the way information is transferred in North Korea: it is stifled until the truth is lost in the process. The resultant images speak to North Korean society, of missing information and truth concealed.
LEFT: HIGHER EDUCATION Kim Il Sung University, founded in October 1946, is the country’s only comprehensive higher education institution offering bachelors, masters, and doctoral degrees. The university plays an important role in preparing the ruling elite for positions in the party and government. Students have access to a research room with Internet access but websites are monitored and restricted, while all books and material are pre-approved by the government.
GUIDED BY THE NOTION THAT NORTH KOREANS ARE RESIDING IN A “DREAM-STATE,” WHERE TRUTH IS NOT LIVED BUT IMPOSED BY THOSE IN POWER, DAOUST’S ANONYMOUS FORMS WANDER THROUGH THE LANDSCAPE.
TOP RIGHT: HEALTH CARE In 1947, free healthcare was introduced for all citizens in North Korea, but the system collapsed in the late eighties. Many hospitals operate without electricity or heat and all patients have to buy their own medicines. While visiting a hospital Nathalie’s group was told that no disabled children have been born in North Korea since the 1950s because of the strong genes of the Korean people. On the contrary, a North Korean doctor who defected, Ri Kwang-chol, has claimed that babies born with physical defects are rapidly put to death and buried. BOTTOM RIGHT: BICYCLES The late Kim Jong II reportedly felt that the sight of a woman on a bike was potentially damaging to public morality. In the mid-nineties, after the daughter of a top general was killed on a bike, the law periodically banned women from riding bicycles. Women are also generally restricted from holding driving licences. PhotoED • 19
CURIOUS + CANDID AN INTERVIEW WITH JOSHUA CAMERON
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ANTON MWEWA’S PHOTOGRAPHS offer a curious and candid view of the world around him. Although he has a unique photographic talent, Anton does not work as a professional photographer. He simply creates photographs as a creative passion, influenced by his personal style and perspective. Anton moved to Canada from Zambia, East Africa, less than a decade ago. Now living in Toronto, the Belarus-born 27-year-old works as an art director for an advertising agency. He is also an avid Britney Spears fan. I wanted to find out more about this really interesting guy, so we had a coffee and a quick ten-question interview. 1. Tell me about your day job.
I’m an art director for an advertising agency. Basically, I create and execute advertising ideas. I create visuals and work as a team with a copywriter. My agency works with companies such as McDonald’s, SickKids Hospital, Intact Insurance, and many others. I enjoy working on projects that people recognize on the street. I like to say, “Oh yeah, I did that thing,” and have people know what I’m talking about. 2. Tell me about your photographic work.
I was super excited to be asked to be one of the ten photographers featured in the 10×10 Photography Project at Toronto’s Gladstone Hotel. Ten queer photographers each took ten portraits of queer Canadians in the arts, for a total of 100 portraits. It’s going to become a book, and the exhibition on display at the Gladstone Hotel opened during Pride 2018. I think seeing those perspectives was really interesting and necessary. Otherwise, I enjoy taking photos for myself and sharing them on Instagram. 3. What got you into photography?
I found my mother’s old Soviet film camera, an early Zenit. I just loved being the person behind the lens. When I got a digital camera, I became obsessed with it. I’ve always been interested in trying new things artistically. I’m all about candid moments. Super simple street-style with bold colours. I love photos that are full of life. 4. What kind of gear do you usually use?
I’m not a gear guy. I like shooting with what I have. I use a Fuji X-T20 mirrorless camera, or even my phone sometimes.
5. How do you edit your photos?
I like to bring out greys and warm colours in Lightroom, and add a touch of a VSCO filter afterward. 6. What drives you to travel?
I try to travel to a few places every year. I love travelling. I get so excited touching down somewhere. It’s that feeling of something new: Here are things I’ve never seen before, people I haven’t met yet. It makes me feel like I’m growing. I also totally go for the photos. 7. What are the top three places you’ve ever been, and why?
My first choice is Arizona. It’s a breathtaking place that’s full of fantastic photo opportunities. Second would be Portugal. I love the people there. They’re so friendly, and there’s great food everywhere. I like the culture, the vibrancy. My third favourite has to be Dubai. That was my first real trip anywhere. I was 16 years old, my first time in a big city. I remember being in awe every time I turned a corner. 8. Who is your biggest inspiration?
My favourite person on Instagram right now is Paola Franqui (@monaris_). My style has been influenced so much by her. I love the way she works with reflections and street photography. 9. If you could photograph anybody at all, who would it be?
It’s a tie between John Lennon, Naomi Campbell, and Jean-Michel Basquiat. 10. What creative work would you like to be best known for?
I’d want to say my photography, but there’s such a saturation of amazing work out there that it’s hard to stand out. Instead, I would love to be a part of an ad campaign that touches people in some way, or changes something. A campaign that people can learn something from. Bonus Question: Which is the greatest Britney Spears album, and why?
I love Blackout because it came out in the middle of her breakdown, but I can also listen to Femme Fatale from start to finish over and over again.
IG: @antontankovich PhotoED • 21
UNDERWATER WORLDS REFLECTION AND AWARENESS OF THE DELICATE STATE OF SOMETHING THAT SUSTAINS US ALL. BY BRIAR CHAPUT
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LEFT: Shot in Tobermory, ON for “Requiem of Water,” a commissioned exhibition for the arts and culture festival of the Toronto 2015 Panam/ Parapan Am Games. RIGHT: Portrait of Sam in a waterfall in Tahsis, BC August 2017.
is an incredibly creative and well-travelled artist who is passionate about our world’s at-risk water systems. The Toronto-based photographer is best known for her ethereal underwater photographs, which draw the audience’s attention to the fragility of aquatic life while highlighting the human impact on these delicate environments. Her desire to become a photographer was initially sparked at the age of 10, as she browsed her grandparents’ collection of National Geographic magazines. From covers of the Sahara desert, to the Arctic tundra, to whales in the Pacific, to chimpanzees in Tanzania, Meaghan was able to live vicariously through the images and travel the world. A particular story about the Amazon jungle piqued her interest and, from that moment, she vowed to follow in the footsteps of the photographers in those iconic magazines. As her life progressed, so did her art, with her craft rooted in exploring our collective human experience and expressing the intricacies of our relationship to the world. Meaghan’s work, in her own words, “surrounds the theme of water, communicating both the beauty and plight of our relationship to it.” In line with her dedication to showcasing this ecosystem and the harm we as humans are capable of causing, Meaghan collaborated with the Seabin Project in St. Maarten and the Anishinaabe community in Ontario for conservation efforts and awareness. An artist’s residency in Tahsis on Vancouver Island in British Columbia in August 2017 reaffirmed her belief that water not only connects the world on an environmental level, but all of humanity. Her time there also revitalized her creativity, which had almost PhotoED • 25
LEFT: Gran Cenote in Tulum, Mexico, 2014. RIGHT: Cenote, Tulum, Mexico, 2018. Meaghan says, “The cenotes in Tulum are so unique and beautiful, that’s why I go there. The water is cold because it’s freshwater, but very clear. I don’t wear a dive suit, as most of these pools I shoot in are fairly shallow so I can snorkel and hold my breath. The past two times I’ve been, I’ve been able to coordinate with friends to join me on the shot as models. I research online to scout locations, and connect with locals. They help in finding the exact spots I need. I message dive companies or use travel sites to connect with people on forums. Instagram has helped with finding a variety of pictures of what locations look like. Once I get there, I scout at different times of the day to get the light I want.”
disappeared before the well-timed and much-needed excursion. Meaghan believes that her work has an “ethereal style” that aims to convey intimacy and sensuality, and relates to our human interactions with water. When asked why underwater photography appeals to her, Meaghan said, “I love the many facets of it and how it makes me feel when I’m in it. I feel my happiest. Water can be terrifying, mysterious, and powerful, yet comforting and healing.” Her ability to harmonize with and shoot comfortably in unfamiliar environments speaks to how at peace Meaghan is with the world around her and her own connection to the land, which she hopes to demonstrate through her photos. Although Meaghan intends to imbue each of her photos with a specific meaning, she also encourages viewers to seek out their own meanings and understandings of her work. One of Meaghan’s most striking images was shot during a trip to Tulum, Mexico, where she will be returning soon to participate in an artist’s residency, collaborating with local musicians and creating live, interactive visuals that accompany music. Her passion and continued dedication to these watery landscapes stems from an earlier series, inspired by her father’s diagnosis of multiple systems atrophy and her desire to raise awareness for the disease. Meaghan explains, “Conceptually, it represented reflection and transformation, which was specific to what my dad was experiencing.”
Not only has Meaghan’s work in the water connected her to the natural world, it has also linked her with people and opportunities internationally. For Meaghan, travel is a necessary part of her creative process. Without travel, she “wouldn’t be able to learn what our relationship to nature truly means, on a larger scale.” Each travel opportunity allows her a new level of growth and discovery, personally and professionally. This globe-trotting photographer has checked off half of Earth’s continents from her to-see list, and has no plans of stopping. In Brazil, her gruelling 12-hour trek through Lençóis Maranhenses National Park inspired her series Symbiosis. In Hawaii, a long helicopter ride through Waialeale Crater and Waimea Canyon, where she was able to lean out of the doorless aircraft, allowed her to see nature from the birds’ perspective rather than the fishes’. In Palau, multiple scuba diving excursions through crystal-clear water with sharks, barracuda, and human-sized clams allowed her to see what protected waters and reefs look like; as Meaghan says, “In a world where climate change is being denied, it was so encouraging to see a government putting the environment first. It gave me hope.” Her award-winning photographs have been used in ocean conservation initiatives and projects across the world. Meaghan travels abroad have brought her an understanding of herself, her own backyard, and the world. Her evocative photos encourage reflection and awareness of the delicate state of something that sustains us all.
IG: @ meaghan_ogilvie
meaghanogilvie.com 26 • PhotoED
“WATER CAN BE TERRIFYING, MYSTERIOUS, AND POWERFUL, YET COMFORTING AND HEALING.”
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JO-ANNE McARTHUR ANIMAL ADVOCATE AN INTERVIEW WITH RITA GODLEVSKIS
A brown bear in Germany, 2016. Jo-Anne McArthur/Born Free Foundation, from the Captive series. A well-worn path from the animalâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s constant pacing runs through the enclosure.
JO-ANNE McARTHUR is an award-winning photojournalist, author, and educator, who has been documenting the plight of animals on all seven continents for over a decade.
Through her long-term body of work We Animals, she has been documenting our complex relationships with animals. She is the author of two books, We Animals and Captive, and co-founder of The Unbound Project, which celebrates female animal advocates worldwide. Jo-Anne was the subject of the critically acclaimed 2013 documentary The Ghosts in Our Machine, which followed her as she documented animals trapped in the web of the Anthropocene, and advocated for their rights as sentient beings. Jo-Anne’s images have been used by hundreds of organizations, media, publishers, and academics. She has spoken extensively in North America, Australia, and Europe on the subjects of photography, animals, social change, and empathy. Photo-shoots and speaking engagements keep Jo-Anne on the road up to eight months each year. Her home bases are Canada and Denmark. I asked her a few questions about her work. What has been the most rewarding thing about your work? That it’s creating a difference in public consciousness about animal sentience, about animals as individuals worthy of our attention and care. I’ve been documenting our uses and abuses of animals for about 15 years. Bearing witness to constant suffering, stress, and death can be hugely demoralizing and depressing. I continue with it, however, because the images and films we’ve shot as a team are creating awareness and change. I strive to make the world a kinder place and the rewards are in seeing that happen and in seeing animals freed from exploitation when they are rescued or cared for. We suspect you’re pretty reliant on the Internet to share your work. Tell us about how the Internet informs what you do. Yes, it’s the reason that millions of people see the We Animals, work every week. My team and I built the We Animals Archive, which has over 10 000 images and videos on it, for anyone to use. As a result, organizations, academics, campaigners, and media in general are sharing our work in different ways, mostly on the Internet, to help educate people about how animals are treated and why that needs to change.
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Tell us a little bit about the gear you use. What pieces are crucial for your travel conditions? My poor gear gets beaten up a fair bit but I guess that’s how it goes for most photojournalists. I’m often in really dusty and dirty places. The key is to not change my lenses too often while shooting in dirty conditions, because we know that makes for a filthy camera and a lot of post-production spot removal! I’d like to say I travel light, but my favourite camera is still my Nikon D4S. I carry two bodies, four lenses, a Litepanel, a monopod, and a few other things. They all add up but basically fit in a backpack. If I had to choose one lens to use for the rest of my life, it would be a wide angle, as I like to get close to my subject matter. You shoot in a very wide variety of conditions, how do you stay prepared? By staying in shape and by staying alert to all of the moving parts around me. Tell us about The Unbound Project. Throughout my travels, I noticed that it was overwhelmingly women who were on the front lines of animal advocacy, whether lawyers, scientists, artists, sanctuary founders, or campaigners. Men are overrepresented in leadership roles in the animal advocacy movement, and so I decided that I wanted to start a project that celebrates women in the movement. Unbound is a multimedia documentary project co-founded with Dr. Keri Cronin and is now under the We Animals umbrella. The project features women, both contemporary and historical, on the front lines of animal advocacy. The stories are shared by an evergrowing audience, and I incorporate a lot of the Unbound stories into my public lectures. Eventually, the project will also be in book format. Photographers love making photography books. Many of your projects seem to take a long time to produce. How do you plan, execute, and deliver your projects? It depends how you see it. We Animals is a long-term project, yes, but it has also become an umbrella title for lots of smaller projects. For example, this summer I’m shooting a story about live transport of animals in Israel and Turkey. While that’s a photo story unto itself, it also fits under the We Animals project and will be made available via our archive. Either way, the stories of animals in the Anthropocene is definitely ongoing work, for sure. I like the work to have many homes; anything to keep it available and seen, really, and not just sitting on a hard drive! That’s why we created the We Animals Archive, why I travel extensively for speaking engagements and conferences, and why I create books as well.
ABOVE: Pikin and Appolinaire. Pikin, a lowland gorilla, had been captured and was going to be sold for bushmeat but was rescued by Ape Action Africa. Jo-Anne took this photograph as the gorilla was being moved from her former enclosure within a safe forest sanctuary in Cameroon to a new and larger one, along with a group of gorilla companions. Pikin was first sedated, but during the transfer to the new enclosure she awoke. Luckily, she was not only very drowsy, but she was also in the arms of her caretaker, Appolinaire Ndohoudou, so she remained calm for the duration of the bumpy drive. This image won the Natural History Museum, Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2017 Competition, Special Award: People’s Choice.
“ I STRIVE TO MAKE THE WORLD A KINDER PLACE AND THE REWARDS ARE IN SEEING THAT HAPPEN AND IN SEEING ANIMALS FREED FROM EXPLOITATION WHEN THEY ARE RESCUED OR CARED FOR.”
A Baltic grey seal. Lithuania, 2016. JoAnne McArthur/Born Free Foundation, from the Captive series. Captive is a book that challenges our preconceptions about zoos and aquaria, animal welfare, and just what or who it is we think we see when we face the animal.
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Based on your photos, you seem to be great with all kinds of people. Any tips for new photographers interested in documenting people who aren’t necessarily used to being photographed?
I think the key is being open and non-judgmental. Genuine curiosity is an essential component of a photojournalists’ work. Everyone has a story to tell. Can you tell us about your editing process? I’m lucky to work with my editor, Vanessa Garrison, so I’m not alone in the process. It’s important to have other people look at your work. I’m being reminded of that again these days. I think I forgot for a while. My initial selects though are done by me alone, and it’s a gut feeling about what’s working about an image, and also having the guts to not select an image that I thought was going to turn out great but didn’t. How do you know when a series is done? That’s a hard one. Honestly, sometimes I just need a project to have a beginning and an ending date so that I can move on to other enticing work that I find will be worthwhile in my mission. However, you also have to give yourself enough time to do a project well, and I am still slowly making strides there. Projects and books should take up a lot of your time and headspace.
TOP LEFT: Activist Karen Bowman touches the snout of a pig who is en route to slaughter, during a Toronto Pig Save vigil. Canada, 2013. From the We Animals series. We Animals illustrates and investigates animals in the human environment: whether they’re being used for food, fashion and entertainment, or research, or are being rescued to spend their remaining years in sanctuaries.
TOP RIGHT: Penny Lane Sanctuary founder Karyn Boswell with two rescued horses, Teddy and Penny. Canada, 2016. From the Unbound series. Unbound is a multimedia documentary project co-founded by Jo-Anne McArthur and Dr. Keri Cronin , under the We Animals umbrella. The project features women on the front lines of animal advocacy, worldwide, both contemporary and historical.
Do you have any words of wisdom for emerging photographers, especially for emerging photographers looking at documentary and investigative work? Reaching an audience with tough subject matter is a challenge, so really think about your audience and possible collaborators. How will you get your work out? How will the work be of service to your subject matter (humanitarian, environmental, animals, whatever it is)? This kind of strategizing is as important as the shoots. You’ve had a long career in photography. What is the hardest part of the job? I don’t think I have a “hardest part of the job.” There’s no place that I’d rather be than here, working as a photojournalist on behalf of animals. It’s crazy-hard work but I love the challenge and seeing the change my team and I are creating in the world. I think that for a lot of photographers, the entrepreneurial aspect of the career is the challenge. We need to think strategically, not just creatively or from the heart, about our work. Having said that, it definitely is hard facing so much suffering and not being able to help the individuals I meet in farms, fur farms, zoos, and all the rest. It’s emotionally draining, but bearing witness is what so many of us photojournalists do in order to expose important stories. What advice do you have for photographers who want to publish their work in book form? Ask yourself why you want to make a book. Is making a book a meaningful and necessary contribution to what you are trying to say in the world? If so, do it. Can you share any upcoming projects you’re working on or excited about? We Animals is growing into a small but mighty team of creators called We Animals Media. A mini NGO and agency of sorts. We are expanding our work into Asia in the coming years and will be taking on some larger projects as a team. It’s an exciting time for us!
JUST ME AND ALLAH SAMRA HABIB STANDS AT THE CROSSROADS OF QUEERNESS AND HER RELIGION WITH A CAMERA IN HER HAND BY JOSH CAMERON
GROWING UP queer in the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community in Canada left Samra feeling like an outsider. In early 2014, the writer and activist set out on a search for others like her, Muslim people who are not necessarily accepted by mainstream Islam. Samra began travelling across North America and Europe to find other queer Muslim people with stories of being between the worlds of Islam and the LGBTQ community. The photographs from her trips became her series, Just Me and Allah: A Queer Muslim Photo Project.
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“I’M INSPIRED BY THE SPIRIT OF MY SUBJECTS AND HOW THEY CARRY THEMSELVES.”
Samra explains, “A lot has been written about queer Muslims in academia, but unfortunately it’s not very accessible.” With work experience in fashion journalism, she knew photography was the perfect way to document the stories she found in a universally accessible way. Historically, photography hasn’t been allowed in Islam, so there is very little photographic archival evidence of the existence of queer, Islamic people. The need to see herself within a community fuels Samra’s work. The Just Me and Allah project combines photographs of her subjects and written accounts of their stories, in a first-person interview format, on her website. It tells the stories of queer Muslim people that would ordinarily be marginalized in an approachable and beautiful way, something Samra wishes she had access to growing up. “I think everyone has an emotional reaction to photography,” says Samra. “I like that people are drawn in because of imagery and then can go down a rabbit hole of exploration. I do that, too, when I’m intrigued by an image. I want to know the story behind the subject, who photographed them, where they were photographed, everything.” “I’m inspired by the spirit of my subjects, and how they carry themselves,” says Samra about her creative process. “Before photographing, I like to spend some time with them so I can understand some of their life story, their strengths and their vulnerabilities. I like to ask them to take me to spaces they feel comfortable in. This way, before I start photographing them, I have a sense of who they might be. I like to try to capture their essence instead of projecting my idea of who I think they might be.” Samra travels to meet her subjects so she can best capture them in their own element, and as a result her photographs are usually streetstyle and naturally lit. “I think natural light lends itself well to a photo documentary project where I am trying to represent who the person is in an authentic way,” she says. “I don’t want my photographs to look staged, and studio photography can often look that way.” Samra’s work has been exhibited at the Contact Photography Festival in Toronto, the International Center of Photography in New York, SOMArts in San Francisco, and the Victoria and Albert Museum in London. The Just Me and Allah: A Queer Muslim Project series is part of Canadian Lesbian and Gay Archives’ permanent collection. A book detailing Samra’s stories is slated for publication in early 2019.
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AN INTERNATIONAL NETWORK The global collaboration of eight fine art universities BY PETER SRAMEK
SINCE 2010, EIGHT UNIVERSITIES have joined to form the
International Art Collaborations Network (INTAC). OCAD University’s Photography program is Canada’s representative. What began with a simple online sharing of art projects, now has the goal of enabling students to communicate across cultures through the design and production of collaborative art projects. Interaction takes place online over an eight-month period and the course concludes with a printed catalogue and an exhibition where students travel to meet in person. Currently, the other participating universities are based in Finland, South Korea, Germany, Japan, India, Mexico, and China. The philosophy of INTAC is based on the belief that international understanding can come from working together and that, as artists, we share a societal responsibility to strive for global advancement in what are challenging times. Visual 38 • PhotoED
art-making naturally promotes communication, which can help to cross language barriers. It also reveals cultural affinities. In developing the concepts for their work, students must grapple with articulating ideas, selecting visual approaches, and resolving different points of view. The aim is to work collaboratively on projects, rather than simply sharing individual production. Over the years, INTAC has learned from experience and developed a process that encourages student initiative and ownership. The choice of online interactions came from the realization that, while international travel can be life-changing, it is out of the reach of many — both students and institutions. We have been fortunate to be able to add travel for some, but attending the international exhibition is not a requirement for the experience to be successful.
“INTAC OPENS DOORS TO THE GLOBAL EXPERIENCE. STUDENTS EAGERLY EXPLORE NEW WAYS OF MAKING ART COLLABORATIVELY. TODAY’S CHALLENGES ARE GLOBAL. ENABLING YOUNG ARTISTS IS CRUCIAL FOR THE FUTURE.”
Our process begins with the students at each school discussing a very general theme, such as “ritual” or “desire.” They are asked to propose related project ideas, which they present to everyone in an online space. Students also make an introductory video about themselves, so everyone sees and hears one another. Students must then contact each other if they feel some affinities, and begin discussing project ideas and to form groups. Groups can be two people or many, depending on the nature of the project. Students often join three to five groups of varying complexity. Resulting artworks include media from photography, video, design, animation, and sculpture. Parameters are open-ended. The work progresses over six months with regular reporting. Inclass Skype meetings occur among the schools, and professors Skype regularly to plan ahead and keep organized. For overall sharing, we use an online space (a blog or team work platform) where all participants can post general information, project reports, works-in-progress, and more. Challenges include creating and maintaining online communications and making the process visible to everyone, including the professors. Much of the activity that goes on among students is hidden within their groups. Because students are free to use any online platforms for communicating that they find effective, professors have found it extremely important to have students at OCAD show and discuss their progress in class, as well as to report their difficulties in connecting with partners. On the communication front, it can be difficult to keep conversations going. Students have reported long silences in their project group, time difference challenges, or differing expectations of what collaboration means. In the short run, it can be frustrating. In the long run, these experiences develop an appreciation for what working together globally entails. We have been pleased to see how, every year, the outcomes lead to greater insights for the participants and a commitment to finding new ways to network internationally.
LEFT page image: Collaborative project installation, Trialogue exhibition, Illum Gallery, Seoul, South Korea, 2013.
TOP : A Skype session between students. CENTRE: Participants from around the globe meet for installation of their exhibition Ritual at Chung-Ang University, Anseong, South Korea, May 2018.
BOTTOM: Students from Canada, Mexico, Finland, and Korea explore Seoul together, May 2018.
Our vision and examples of the process can be found at:
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SAMUEL : BOLDUC FROM MATANE TO LONDON
LEFT: Samuel Bolduc’s first submission to the World Photography Organisation’s Student Photographer of the Year competition, “Fracturation.” BELOW: Samuel Bolduc’s award winning series, The Burden.
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IT’S A LONG WAY from Matane, QC, to London, UK. And it’s hard for a photography student from Canada to imagine having his name announced as a winner at a glamorous gala dinner event showcasing the best photography from around the world. However, this is exactly what happened to Collège de Matane student Samuel Bolduc.
This past April, Samuel Bolduc was named World Photography Organisation’s (WPO) Student Photographer of the Year. The journey began with his photograph “Fracturation,” which was submitted to the WPO competition to represent Collège de Matane by his teachers Yves Arcand and Robert Baronet. Produced by the WPO, the Sony World Photography Awards boasts they are the “world’s most diverse photography competition, featuring photographers from more than 200 countries and territories.” The annual London exhibition “brings together established and emerging talent from around the world, providing winning and shortlisted photographers the opportunity to showcase their work on an international stage.” Samuel’s entry made it through the first round of the competition and into the very special second round. Only ten schools from around the world are chosen to participate in a second brief. Using the camera he won in the first round, Samuel had to create a series of images in response to the Parley for the Oceans Foundation brief to “create a series of images which highlight and raise awareness of the problem of plastic waste in the oceans.” Samuel explains his idea: “For this second brief, I staged poetic photographs that show people bearing the burden of plastic waste in the environment to show that we must take action to halt plastic pollution now. The characters in my series The Burden act as vehicles to express the hope that change can occur, whilst the vastness of the wintry landscapes highlight the small place
humankind has in the environment. These images were created in the Lower Saint Lawrence region in Quebec, Canada, in February 2018.” The ten students selected for the second round and their tutors were flown to London, where their images were exhibited. As well, they had their work published in the annual World Photography Awards book. The prize for the winning school was more than €30,000 worth of Sony photography equipment. The 2018 WPO awards ceremony was held at the Hilton hotel in London. Seated at table 19, the small team representing Canada were just excited to be in the company of students and teachers from France, China, New Zealand, Argentina, India, South Africa, and the United Kingdom. Robert recalls, “All the work by all of the participating students was showcased at the event on large projector screens. The quality of the projectors was not great for Samuel’s snow white images. We felt such doubt about our chances of winning. But then, his name was called! We were completely stunned.” Following the announcement, Samuel and his teachers were invited backstage to meet Whitney C. Johnson, Vice President, Visual Experiences for National Geographic, and Kenji Tanaka, Senior General Manager, Digital Imaging Group, Sony. “We felt so proud for everyone in Matane monitoring the results on Twitter and soon afterwards, the phone started to ring with calls of congratulations from Radio Canada and the Premier of Quebec! We received so much attention from our supporters back home that we are still surfin’ on the clouds.” Congratulations to the team from Collège de Matane from PhotoED Magazine! We’re excited to see where you go next!
IG: @ cegepmatane.photographie
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Daniel Castro Graduate, Independent Digital Photography
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RENAISSANCE LIGHT & CULINARY DELIGHTS BY NICOLA IRVIN
BY NICOLA IRVIN
MARIE LOUISE MOUTAFCHIEVA loves food. Her culinary quests are the driving force behind her adventures around the globe, and she captures it all through a Renaissance-inspired lens.
Marie Louise, better known as “Mimi,” is a Bulgarian-Canadian photographer and recent photo school graduate. She honed her skills in the studio during her studies at Ryerson University in Toronto, and progressed naturally towards still life and food photography. This direction may even have been written in the stars; at the tender age of 1, per Bulgarian tradition, Mimi’s family conducted a small ceremony in which several objects representing various career paths or passions were placed in front her. Little Mimi toddled a beeline for the pita bread, and the rest is history. Through her teen years, she discovered her passion for photography as she documented her baked creations in the kitchen of her family home. Mimi’s method has remained quite the same and even now, as a seasoned photographer, she describes her process of planning, baking, and shooting as a time of “delightful tranquillity.” She has always loved to immerse herself in a cozy creative bubble when making new work. Although Mimi’s own kitchen is dear to her, she has undeniably been bitten by the travel bug. Family trips evolved into selfdirected food tours that tend towards rural European cuisine. This artist’s appreciation for “little moments” — a coffee break shared with friends, a café serenaded by birdsong, or a fresh fig plucked from the grounds of a Chateau in Bordeaux — remains at the forefront of her images. Mimi never aims to illicit jealousy in a viewer, but rather to create images that allow others to be drawn into these magical little moments for themselves. She finds comfort and inspiration within these memories when she returns home to Canada, creating and photographing dishes in her own kitchen that remind her of a sunny day in, say, Lisbon. The combination of the artist’s zeal for history and desire to live simply (ideally in a rural village somewhere in Eastern Europe) plays a part in her creative process. Mimi stylistically draws from her favourite Renaissance artists, including Rembrandt, Van Eyck, and Vermeer, in her photography practice.
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Despite her endearingly “old soul,” Mimi has a deep appreciation for all that the Internet has to offer. Food blogs have inspired her to embark on some of her most memorable experiences, such as her trip to Bordeaux, France, where she had the opportunity to work alongside some of her favourite food blogger photographers at a workshop hosted in an ancient French castle.
NICOLA IRVIN NOTE: On a sunny afternoon in spring, I met Mimi for coffee at The Grange, a lovely café in the Art Gallery of Ontario. Mimi is slightly on edge - after all, I did invite her out for coffee and an art chat, only to immediately hook her up to my handy little lavaliere microphone. She quickly forgets however, as we settle into seats in a little nook by a window.
Her high-waisted, gingham pants and ruffled shirt contrast the dark wooden architecture of the café, yet somehow she seems to match the design of the space. We sit surrounded by fine art and artfully crafted caffeinated beverages. A waiter arrives with our drinks - a cappuccino for Mimi and a chai tea for me.
NI: Tell me a bit about your family. How they have influenced your work? MM: Most of my childhood summers were spent travelling from Canada to Bulgaria visiting family members. These visits often revolved around food. My grandparents and my mother are big food enthusiasts and they are always in the kitchen. I think it was in grade eight that I really started to appreciate it all. I then started to do my own research, make bucket lists for myself, and ask my parents “why don’t we go here, see this and that…” NI: Where are some of the places that you’ve been? MM: There’s many! I’ve been to France, Italy…Italy a couple times, it’s one of my favourites. England - mostly London, Bulgaria of course, Turkey - Turkey is one of my highlights actually. NI: Why was Turkey so special? MM: I think it was mostly because of the food culture. I found the cuisine to be very similar to Bulgarian cuisine. The two cultures have influenced each other historically dating back to the Ottoman Empire. Also, Greece - my Godmother is there and I was baptized in Greece, oh!, and, Japan last year. NI: Do you ever experience culture shock when you travel? MM: Japan was a huge shock. It was my first time in Asia - although Turkey is kind-of right on the borderline but you don’t feel it as much. The people that I met in Japan handled themselves with such poise and respect. I also enjoyed the distinctive Japanese design style, such as these pants! NICOLA IRVIN NOTE: Mimi gestures to her super cool gingham pants. NI: How has travel influenced you personally? MM: I do try to take whatever I’ve experienced when I’m travelling and include it into my everyday life in Canada. I’m not a fan of living where I am at this point *she laughs uncomfortably* I feel I’ve lived here long enough and want to move somewhere else likely, Europe. I feel there’s more of a life, and a different way of living there. Here, I’m just at my office, come home, sleep, and live life on the side NI: You’re totally selling me on Europe! MM: It’s true! I feel as though, in Canada, you’re expected to work from morning to night. The enjoyment is something that I feel is missing here. I’m trying to keep that positivity of enjoying life from the European side to here in Canada but it’s difficult.
“I DO TRY TO TAKE WHATEVER I’VE EXPERIENCED WHEN I’M TRAVELLING AND INCLUDE IT INTO MY EVERYDAY LIFE IN CANADA.”
NI: When did you transition your love of food into food photography? MM: The photography really started when I started to bake. That’s what got me energized. I wanted to share my love of food with other people. It was in my 3rd year of photography study [at Ryerson University], I started doing more food styling, more baking, and was feeling more successful.
I also visited a lot of bakeries and pastry shops. I asked chefs to enter their kitchens. I started off at a family owned Italian bakery and a later a French pastry shop. That’s when I started experimenting with Italian Renaissance-style lighting. It has worked for me and I’ve never looked back. I take inspiration from Instagram and follow a lot of food bloggers. A while ago, I saw that a couple of my favourite food bloggers were offering a workshop in Bordeaux. This was kind of a graduation gift to myself. I was feeling pretty confident in my work and felt that it would be a good step forward for me to work with these artists that I had followed for so long. It was based in an old chateau and the small group of us had the whole thing to ourselves. I was the youngest of the group but felt very welcomed. The views from the chateau were of green vineyards, and there was always a lingering smell of fresh morning dew. Every morning we would wake up to a view of a fig tree and smells of fresh figs. This workshop definitely helped me along. When I first got there I felt nervous and star-struck! But when we started working oneon-one, it boosted my confidence. I’m a very timid person. This experience really did help me to mature confidence-wise, and it helped my work tremendously as well. It was really a dream come true.
artworks that so heavily inspire her. We stop in front of JeanSiméon Chardin’s 1758 painting “Jar of Apricots.” NI: I think your work strives do deliver this same feeling. MM: Yes. It’s this same simplicity, this wonderful lighting, that I draw from in my work. I want the food that I photograph to be beautiful, but not too beautiful to be eaten. NI: Do you think that you shoot to travel, or travel to shoot, or something in between?
MM: On our last night there, we had a big dinner at an even older chateau. Some of us got quite emotional at the end of the workshop. We had grown attached to each other, since we all shared the same passion.
MM: I think it’s a bit of both, but I start with the ‘travel to shoot.’ The travelling is where I get the inspiration and before I go anywhere, I research and talk to people who have gone before me to gather information, and then start to develop my own idea surrounding the trip. When I’m in the process of organizing a trip to go somewhere, I create these visions in my head of what I want to see, experience, and the food I want to eat. I pinpoint specific locations and then once I’m there, the travelling takes care of all the inspiration.
NICOLA IRVIN NOTE: At this point, Mimi and having finished our drinks decide to explore the gallery to stroll around some of the
NI: Are you also able to re-capture this inspiration when you’re at home in your own kitchen?
NICOLA IRVIN NOTE: I am enraptured with Mimi’s retelling of this culinary adventure, peering wistfully over the edge of my teacup, and longing for one of those fresh figs.
the world, and it broadens your perspective, which then broadens your work. Travelling teaches you that there is more to life than simply work. NI: I feel like your food photography especially illustrates this. MM: Through my photography I aim to share those narrow streets in Europe, and take people on a journey with me. I hate when people say ‘oh I’m so jealous.’ I don’t want people to feel jealous, I want to share with them and want the audience to feel inspired. Maybe inspire them to take a journey themselves or even start cooking in their own home. NI: They don’t have to go to Florence, Florence can be their own kitchen. MM: I feel I depend on my travel to give me inspiration. I bring ideas from abroad back to my own kitchen, and always come back wanting to do more baking and cooking.
I use the memories from the places I’ve been in an aim to relive those moments. Through my work, I never have to let go of those experiences. Sometimes I find it hard to be in the place that I am. Right now, I live outside of Toronto and don’t get into the city much. I feel as though I am in a routine every day. It can be hard to find inspiration in that.
MM: Exactly! And if then they someday do get the chance to go to Florence, even better!
Wherever Mimi’s travels take her next, we’re excited to follow her vicariously as she pursues her passion for documenting sweet and savory adventures.
I’m really passionate about what I’m doing. Just getting your hands dirty, you become more inspired creatively. For me, I’m always wondering ‘where do these ingredients come from?’ If you are able to travel, the travelling itself is a great teacher. You learn so much about life in general, people in different areas of
IG: @marielouphotography www.marielou.photography
a leap of faith ALEIA ROBINSON-ADA took a leap of faith when she accepted a
photography internship in Cairo, Egypt. Back in Canada, she reflects on the opportunity and how it has, and will continue to, shape her photographic practice. BY NICOLA IRVIN
AR4PHOTOGRAPHY.COM IG: @_AR4PHOTOGRAPHY
NI: How would you sum up your photographic practice? ARA: I’m a portrait, documentary, and travel photographer. In own my own business, Aleia Robinson Photography, I lead various documentary projects and collaborations with other creatives. My blog, ‘Chasing Dreams Worldwide’ is where I share my travel adventures and personal growth stories.
NI: You recently went to Egypt on an internship with AIESEC International (a “non-governmental, not-for-profit organization in consultative status with the United Nations Economic and Social Council”). Can you tell me more about that experience?
whose first language was not English, and on top of that, we were in a country whose primary tongue couldn’t be further away from English.
NI: What advice do you have for emerging photographers who are interested in taking part in an AISEC internship?
ARA: Take a chance! A lot of people warned me about going to ARA: My experience working with AIESEC was different than any Egypt, and how it could be dangerous for me, not being of the other internship I’d done before. We were partnered with a travel and tourism agency called Dune Raider’s Egypt with a goal of documenting the country’s tourism opportunities. Interns included photographers, bloggers, videographers, and social media writers. Our teams travelled together and built social media followings by sharing our tourist adventures. There is something about travelling for work that changes your entire experience and perspective. Once we started the backpacking portion of the trip, that’s where the creativity really took place, as we were getting to know the Egyptian people and living in a different city every two days. With limited time in each city, it was important to photograph as much as possible.
culture or primary religion, but I’m thrilled that I went. I didn’t know what I was getting myself into until I arrived, but I’m very glad I did it.
NI: How did you transition from your internship into working independently as a travel/tourism photographer?
ARA: I draw from the skills that I learned in Egypt every day in my
work now. I made a lot of notes over the course of the trip. Now, I take every chance I get to make a story out of something. Whenever I travel for leisure, it turns into a storytelling and documentation experience rather than a ‘fun trip.’
NI: What was it like to work alongside other international creatives?
NI: What is the most important aspect of travel photography for
What were the challenges? What were the biggest rewards?
ARA: Working alongside other creatives was my favourite part
ARA: The most important aspect of travel photography to me is
of the internship because we were able to learn from each other to work and memories together. I still talk to my teammates and consider them family. The biggest challenge was not knowing the local languages. Most of my teammates came from countries
being able to tell a story exclusively through a visual medium – without words or sentences. The way I see it, if the images can tell the story on their own, then you’ve done a good job. If the images can tell multiple stories on their own, then you’ve done a great job. To learn more about AIESEC International, www.aiesec.org
MAKING A DIFFERENCE These six photographers use their talents to help international communities in need. They go above and beyond to create striking images along the way. Follow these leads to learn more about what these amazing Canadians abroad do.
In 2017, Whitehorse-based photographer Mark Kelly journeyed to Siem Reap, Cambodia to help tell the Bracelets4Buildings story in pictures.
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ERIN VON KÖNIG “This image is from a series of photos taken during visits to rural Ethiopian communities while I was posted to the Canadian Embassy in Addis Ababa (2013-16). In Ethiopia, two in every five girls are married before their 18th birthday and nearly one in five girls marries before the age of 15. Child marriage remains a deeply-rooted tradition in many Ethiopian communities and, in many cases, function as a source of livelihood for families. It also increases the likelihood that girls will not attend school and will suffer complications as a result of early pregnancy and childbirth. My objective for this photo series was to look beyond these statistics, and to engage with the girls directly so that their perspectives could also inform discussion on this issue. The young girls I met during my visits were determined, committed to accessing education, and renegotiating gender roles and expectations in their communities. While there is so much work yet to be done, they are increasingly active in carving out the requisite space for positive change to happen. My photos seek to tell this hopeful story as well.”
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In May 2015, Eileen travelled to the Kathmandu Valley as an independent healthcare volunteer, providing treatments at community clinics run by a Nepali NGO. Above: One month after the devastating Gorkha earthquake volunteers are busy with cleanup efforts, breaking down damaged buildings and clearing the rubble.
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Top right: A sadhu or holy man, with his begging bowl in hand along a street in Kathmandu. Left: A wild monkey at the Swayambhunath Stupa,
with Kathmandu city in the background. With so many monkeys here, visitors from abroad have nicknamed the site “Monkey Temple”.
Security guard by night and humanitarian by day, Edmonton-based photographer Gerry Yuam is driven to share the stories behind the most vulnerable. Since 2013, Gerry has been documenting families in Mae Sot, Thailand for his project,
See more: www.eileenseto.photography
FAMILIES OF THE DUMP. These families are Burmese refugees who work in the garbage, as well as live on it. They make their livings scavenging and selling plastics and other recyclables.
Gerry works with his online community to raise money and awareness for his projects – check out his extensive collection of images at:
Edmonton-based Robert Wallace These images, from the Are We travelled to Uganda on behalf of Together series, represent a Victoria School of the Arts and Old glimpse into the lives of the children HTTP://ROBERTWALLACE.CA/GALLERScona Academic, in support of two and the families of rural, western IES/UGANDA local NGOs: HEAL International and Uganda. Some images represent the the Ainembabazi Children’s Project. conditions of living in a financially Students of Victoria School and Old poor area of the world, while Scona Academic provide funding others display the joy, courage, and to support Ugandan children’s resilience of a people he came to education. better understand and admire. “Are we together?” is the Ugandan way of asking, “do you understand me?”
Based in London, Ontario, Ray Majoran is a photographer, follower of Jesus, and co-founder of the Compassion Gallery. The gallery functions online and through live exhibitions, and profits from photographs sold are donated to charities.
The project’s mandate is: “To document the world through fresh eyes, to inspire humanity with God’s beauty, and to bring hope to the most vulnerable. That is Compassion Gallery”. https://compassion.gallery PhotoED • 53
SUBMISSIONS BY OUR READERS
Toron ‘The I
“From of Ice of M IG: @ www
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nto, ON Ice Man Cometh’
m a February adventure in Iceland, under one eland’s biggest glaciers, Vatnajokull. A sample Mother Nature’s below-the-surface work.” @focalocity w.focalocity.ca
‘Kiddie, Gananoque, 2011”
Toronto, ON ‘Sneaky, Montreal, 2009’
Edmonton, AB ‘Fumante, Poroto, Portugal, April 2018’
‘Christine, Lac Gautier, 2003’
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JULIE-ANNE DAVIES Kimberly, BC
TOP (LEFT TO RIGHT):
‘Buddhist monk at Boudhanath Stupa in Kathmandu, Nepal’ ‘Shoe salesman in Havana, Cuba’ ‘Woman in market, Havana, Cuba’ ‘Child from Khumbu Valley, Nepal’
BOTTOM (LEFT TO RIGHT):
‘Sweet little old woman, Havana, Cuba’ ‘Boy on his way to school, Khumbu Valley, Nepal’ ‘Nepali woman carrying loads up to the market at Namche Bazaar in the Khumbu Valley’ ‘Old woman (one blue eye), Havana, Cuba’
“ I travel a LOT for photography. In the past ten months, I’ve gone to the Galapagos, the Amazon, Ladakh - Northern India and the Baja. I am heading to Bhutan in October. I have my own business, JulieAnne Davies Photography, and work for a company called Wild Images based out of the UK, leading international photo tours.” IG: @julieannedaviesphoto julieannedavies.com To find out more about Wild Images, visit: www.wildimages-phototours.com/leader/ julie-anne-davies-photography-tourleader/
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DANIELLE VAN WERKHOVEN Toronto, ON ‘Intrapersonal’
“ I am drawn to landscape photography, and the opportunity to travel has allowed me to explore the subject in new ways. I went to Australia because I wanted to experience and explore a landscape new to me. My experience is depicted through photomontage layering images. Instead of one photograph to represent an experience, these images layered in a singular frame represent the emotional rollercoaster that being away from home felt like.”
IG: @dvanwerkhoven.photography dvanwerkhoven.photography.com
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DAVID LEECH Calgary, AB ‘Solid Gold’
IG: @imageseekers imageseekers.ca LEFT (BELOW):
Toronto, ON ‘Landscape Imagined: Morocco (v) ’
“ Landscape Imagined challenges the conventions of travel photography and reminds the viewer that landscape is invented through our gaze.” lindabriskinphoto.com RIGHT (TOP TO BOTTOM):
CATHIE ALDERS TAYLOR Calgary, AB ‘Artistic License’
IG: @cathie_aalders_taylor cathieaalderstaylor.com
KEVIN LAW Edmonton, AB
“A Buddhist Monk in repose at Wat Pha That Luang, in the city of Vientiene, Laos where the monks live and study.”
Ottawa, ON ‘Manjri’, From the series: Matka: Traditional Water Carriers, Jaipur India, 2017. Work from the Kala Chaupal Artists Collaborative project in 2017.
IG: @BBrownartist BarbaraBrown.ca
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JENS KRISTIAN BALLE Vancouver, BC ‘Remains II’ ‘Remains III’ ‘Remains IV’ ‘Remains V’
“ This series portrays a handful of World War II bunkers located on the Danish West Coast in the Oksbøl military firing range close to Blåvandshug. This range is the largest of its kind in Denmark. These bunkers were part of the Nazi regimes Atlantic Wall, stretching along the coast from Norway in the North, all the way to the Spanish border in the South. Close to 5000 kilometres of concrete fortifications and other defensive measures.
The bunkers were all originally built in the sand dunes but are now, after decades of erosion and exposure to the elements, slowly being swallowed up by the ocean. It is unknown how long these relics will remain. For now they still stand as a reminder of the past.” IG: @ballephoto jenskristianballe.com
GERRY KAISER Windsor, ON ‘Brúarfoss waterfall’
“ The Brúarfoss waterfall is located in Iceland, east of Reykjavik in the region known as the Golden Circle - a route that covers a 300km loop from Reykjavik and includes Þingvellir National Park, Gullfoss Waterfall and the geothermal area known as Geysir. We were told about this special place by a local who said it should not be missed because of its
intense beauty. It was definitely one of the highlights of our trip. This image is a time exposure with use of a tripod and ND filter to blur the motion of the icy turquoise blue water swirling in the whirlpool at the bottom of the falls.” IG: @ kaiserphotography kaiserphotography.ca
PAUL TEOLIS Toronto, ON
A tabular iceberg at sunset during the crossing of the Drake Passage to Antarctica
IG: @paulteolisphotography fieldandscreen.com PhotoED • 63
TRISHA GILLINGS Toronto, ON
‘A matter of scale’
“ When you see photos of the Treasury building in Petra, Jordan, you do not realize how big it is. The size and scale are immense. A tourist walking by illustrates the scale of the structure while showcasing the remoteness of the location.”
BOTTOM (LEFT TO RIGHT): ‘Ottoman tradition’
“ Very few North Americans think of Bosnia as a vacation destination. However the war torn country is starting to come back from the devastation of the late 1990’s. Mostar is a city that still carries echoes of the Ottoman occupation to this day. Traditional Turkish coffee is prepared and served in many restaurants and cafes.” ‘Death is all around us’
“ I spent some time in an Orthodox Jewish community in Jerusalem. A young man stops to read the bulletin boards of death notices and obituaries of people in the community.” ‘Man and eagle’
“ A Kazakh eagle hunter spends a quiet moment gazing at the mountains of Bayan-Ulgii Province in Mongolia. He has spent the day working with his eagle to perfect the maneuvers that they need for a successful fox hunt. The landscape is extremely barren and remote. No crops can be grown in this harsh territory - inhabitants rely on livestock and hunting for food.” IG: @trish_around_the_world
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JESUS MAZAPINERO St. Catherines, ON
“Quinn is a 25 year old California man, traveling around the world chasing surf communities.” “Surfer Portrait Trio: Maxim (left), Bryce (middle) and a shy local from Barranco taking their first surf lessons in Lima’s rough waters.” “Unknown Local: Although she asked to remain anonymous she did tell me her age; she’s 64.” jesusmaza.com BOTTOM:
Toronto, ON ‘Northern Iceland, September 2017’
“ This was my last shot on my T-Max 400 roll of film, and was well worth the climb. On an empty stomach that morning, weak and slowly loosing energy as I got closer to this waterfall, I finally arrived and took the money shot of the day!” maccalarco.tumblr.com
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Vancouver, BC ‘Valencia Street Trees’ ‘Plataja La Malvarrosa, Valencia’ ‘Russafa, Valencia’ 66 • PhotoED
IG: @alipenkophotographer alipenko.com
LIAM MACKENZIE Edmonton, AB ‘Greece’
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ROSEMARY ADLER Toronto, ON
BOTTOM, LEFT TO RIGHT:
TOP, LEFT TO RIGHT:
‘Namesake’ Connemara foal and mother, Connemara National Park, Ireland, 2017 ‘Lealt Falls’ Isle of Skye, Scotland, 2017
‘Sunshine in Glencoe’ Glencoe, Scotland, 2018 ‘Golden Gorse’ Isle of Arran, Scotland, 2018 68 • PhotoED
KYLIE PINDER Toronto, ON
‘Crikey’ Aerial view of a marshland in Kakadu Nation Park where Wild Water Buffalo’s are known to roam.
‘Airship’ Sunrise balloon ride in Alice Springs.
‘Parallel Lines’ View of the outback from a morning hot air balloon ride.
IG: @thekyliepinder kyliepinder.com
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DANIKA RICHARD Dieppe, NB ‘Lausanne’
theeastcoastlife.wordpress.com LEFT (BOTTOM):
Wainwright, AB ‘Tobermory Scotland, Isle of Mull”
IG: @prairiewinds77 Twitter: @prairiewinds77
PAUL YEGHOUCHIAN Toronto, ON ‘Tivoli Gardens’
Tivoli Gardens opened in 1843 in Copenhagen, Denmark. The park is the second oldest operating amusement park in the world.
IG: @travellrite travellrite.com RIGHT (BOTTOM):
JULIE VINCENT Calgary, AB ‘Gardenia Pizza, Cambridge, England, 2012’ ‘Fashion Yin Yang; Tokyo, Japan, 2016’
IG: @JulieVincentPhotography @TrippingTheStreet Twitter: @JCVPhotography flickr.com/photos/writerwriter
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CHAD TOBIN Sydney, NS
From the Beautiful Strangers Tokyo series
“ Crowded streets, sensory overload, and a concrete metropolis, describes the rhythm of the Tokyo experience. I spent three weeks walking the streets of Shinjuku, Shibuya, and Nihonbashi, awash in a neon glow armed with my camera.” IG: @tobinchad chadtobin.com
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Toronto, ON ‘Miller Outdoor Theatre Houston, Texas, 2015 ‘Gathering at Chouwen, Lebanon 2016’
IG: @rihah fshah.format.com
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CHRISTINA GREGOIRE Toronto, ON ‘Trinidad’ 74 • PhotoED
IG: @christinagregoire christina-gregoire.com
JAKE BORCHENKO Toronto, ON ‘Portraits from Nepal’
“ While working on a documentary in rural Nepal, I used my spare time to explore the area and capture these photographs. It was a great way to practice the language and meet some really genuine people.”
IG: @jakeborchenko jakeborchenko.com
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GEORGE BROWN COLLEGE SCHOOL OF DESIGN
SEE YOU AT THE WATERFRONT
George Brown College’s Waterfront Campus (opening 2019) is expanding to include an exciting new facility in the Daniels Waterfront—City of the Arts Development.
Art & Design Foundation
Interaction Design & Development
School of Design programs, including the School’s first Honours Bachelor Degree in Digital Experience Design, will run alongside a research hub and living lab where industry and students will bring ideas to life.
Concept Art for Entertainment
Interactive Media Management
Interdisciplinary Design Strategy
Honours Bachelor Degree in Digital Experience Design
PARTNER WITH US We bring together industry with design faculty and students to develop and test cutting-edge technologies, games, and digital applications for the smart economy. We work with a range of sectors including construction, finance, health, information and communication technologies. Join the growing list of organizations working with the School of Design on applied research and design projects. Hire our students as part of our field education program or as full-time designers upon graduation.
INTRODUCING OUR NEW HONOURS BACHELOR OF DIGITAL EXPERIENCE DESIGN 4 years (8 semesters) Honours Bachelor Degree In this program, students will develop the ability to critically analyse and adapt to ever changing conditions of technology and culture. Foundational courses build students’ analytical, technical, and business skills. In upper year courses and capstone projects, students collaborate on digital interfaces and applications, as well as interactive environments and objects.
georgebrown.ca/design 416.415.5000 ext. 2137 firstname.lastname@example.org
The curriculum focuses on three areas of learning based on the digital experience design process: •
Think: design thinking, theory, culture, and research
Make: designing, building and testing digital experiences
Ship: entrepreneurship and the commercialization of digital products
Cubus Concept Rendering Ardy Llantino, Leonardo Burgatte, and Rajan Jangra
@designGBC designgbc George Brown College
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