The new Winnipeg Cooks book is here, available now at participating restaurants, and on book shelves starting Oct 20th. Until then I am showcasing each of the restaurants in an blog post.PROMENADE Cafe and Wine
Montreal, Toronto, and Vancouver may be bigger and flashier, but foodies in the know have been whispering another city’s name under their breath for years. The rest of us are about to be let in on the secret.
Where do you go if you want to experience a taste of farm-fresh cooking with an international flare? Or a slice of cake to make the angels sing? How about some traditional perogies made with some decidedly untraditional ingredients? What if you’re looking to try out a nouveau supper club, or a public feast at a family farm?
You go to Winnipeg.
In Winnipeg Cooks, thirty-five of the city’s epicurean trailblazers share stories and recipes from the frontlines of an emerging culinary hotspot. From the hearty eastern European standards of the working class North End to storied steakhouses that have fed generations to an explosion of bold hybrid menus by risk-taking young chefs—this is how Winnipeg cooks.
If you’re looking for inspiration for your next meal, look no further. Featuring the stunning photography of Ian McCausland and 70 mouth-watering and chef-tested recipes, Winnipeg Cooks will leave you hungry for more.
Ken Miner came through and held a seminar on Wet Plate photography. The process is also know as the Colliodion process and dates back to the 1850’s, the dawn of photography.
The process has gained a new resurgence as a reaction to the perfect, glossy, fast world of digital. As much as “normal” film is coming back bit, and people constantly ask me if I’d ever shoot film again, processes like Wet Plate appeal to me the most. It’s the ultimate in hands-on and slow and it creates an unique image you simply can’t replicate with any other technology.
Ken’s been a practitioner of the process for several years and there was a lot of excitement from the small group to learn the step necessary to make an image.
The morning started with Ken photographing each of us while we all watched and made notes and asked questions.
the process is called “wet Plate” because the entire process from start to finish has to happen while the plate is wet, so the coating and sensitizing, exposing and developing all has to happen in succession on site!
The plates are sensitive to UV so even in nice light exposures are 6-8 seconds. People have to hold still! Then right after the exposure it’s back in to the darkroom for developing, then fixing the image,which can happen in daylight!
I sat first so my portrait came out a little dark but it was still very cool to go through the process as a subject to understand how it feels.
After lunch we had Style Hunter Fox, come by with some period clothing and we all took turns at photographing her. It was a bit nerve-wracking but very exciting to go through the steps and have an image work!
A couple days later Ken took the seminar outside! Ken has a customized darkroom in the back of his van, which allows you to shoot on location.
The cool part of the fixing process done in daylight, is the subject gets to see themselves emerge from the plate, like magic! Their reaction is the best part of shooting portraits with this process!I put a call out on Facebook for a subject and Kristy formerly of the Lab Works, came by for a few plates.
This first one I was just trying to make an image of any kind, didn’t spend much time with the pose or expression, and it shows!
The next plate Kristy and I spent a bit more time on finding pose that she could feel relaxed in for 6 seconds and then I prompted her a bit more to find the right expression.
The next one I wanted to try something different, Kirsty is a passionate practitioner of yoga so I wanted to see if she could hold the pose for 6 seconds! She nailed it!
Needless to say, this was a LOT of fun! Everyone who attended the seminar is vowing to continue making images and we’re all working together to source the necessary materials. I hope to share more images very soon!
For the Ciao Cook feature in this months magazine we showcased Kristjan Kristjannson of Brogue Gastor Pub and Leighton Fontaine of Osborne Village Cafe
We showcased Winnipeg’s own Boon Burger for the latest issue of Ciao magazine. Tomas and Anneen are just so friendly and cool, it was so much fun to work with them on this story.
From the article:
… Tomas Sohlberg and Anneen DuPlessis exhibit the kind of freewheeling spirit necessary for such a venture. These two world travellers met in Key West, Florida at a yoga class – fast forward five weeks and they were getting married in Las Vegas. Now, almost nineteen years later, this spirit and tenacity shows through in their business practices as well. Burgers made of beans may not seem like a hot commodity, but five years into their venture, sales are booming.
It been an extremely busy month with serval big shoot and the Fifa Womens World Cup so I am behind on my blog posts. But in the meantime I offer this video clip from the recent Rickis shoot we did.
This is a series of ads around Winnipeg for the new attractions at the Assinioboine Park Zoo. Braden from Relish asked me to help him realizing this concept and deal with the hardest part of it all, the kids! Seriously though I love working with kids and we had some great fun working with them as well as their parents. It was so easy to create these excited joyous looks as the new areas of the zoo really are very cool I encourage everyone to visit!
Recently I made portraits of Rana Abdullah for CPA magazine for a column on how to find balance with life/work. Here’s what Rana said:
It really hit me to slow down when one day Yafa [the youngest of my four daughters] urged me to buy her shoes two sizes bigger. As her mother, I should have known that, but I had lost track. I reflected on my goals in the different areas of my life, and then I actively developed the skills I would need to get balance. I started setting boundaries on my time.
Now, I take Friday nights off work: I spend them with the family. My daughters help me with housework, cooking and technology.
I have figured out a way to deal with my career, parenting and my other interests. It took some time, and I don’t claim that I feel successful every day, but I found a way to balance it all. I love to garden and grow flowers, I paint and I write — those activities relieve stress and give me time to reflect and think.
[Work-life balance] has to be anchored in a firm personal philosophy about something: for me, that something is human rights. I have served as an advocate with the Canadian Museum for Human Rights and in my support of refugees, I have been through everything from bureaucratic approvals to assisting families in settling in their new communities. I won’t ever say “I’m not available” when there’s a call to action on human rights.
If it weren’t for the idealistic and creative aspects of my life, I don’t believe I could have survived as an accountant. And if it weren’t for the discipline and structure of my profession as a CGA, I would probably have burnt out by now. I need both.
– As told to Dexter Brown
We were luck enough to be able to arrange to shoot in the Canadian Museum of Human Rights. A stunning space to shoot it, we had no problem findings several areas to create images. The
Jay came by the studio recently to help me try out my new toy, my Petzval lens. It’s a replica lens made by the Lomographic society and it mimics the wonderful portrait lenes of the past. Not only does it look cool (hit this link to see) but it gives wonderful soft look that;s actually kind of hard to get with today’s super accurate lenses.
the great thing about lenses like this is they react to adverse conditions in unique ways. I purposely aimed a light back at the camera and tried to get some flare patterns and create some happy accidents!
The day she dropped by the weather was lousy so we shot in studio and used some painted backdrops I picked up awhile ago. This one reminded us of the movie 300 and I processed the images with that style in mind!
With this phase of the campaign aimed at the staff at Health Sciences Centre, we want to capture some of the staff who’ve already registered, in a heroic light and create some drama to match the headline. Working within the HSC campus we looked for locations that could give us some leading lines, while also neutral space for copy. All the subjects were wonderful to work with and this project was great fun to work on!
I urge everyone who needs this and resides in Manitoba to take the 2mins to register for organ donation. I did it and it really does take two minutes. While I already had a donor card in my wallet as you can imagine these can be lost or destroyed in the very same station where their needed.T ime is really a huge factor in successful organ donation , registering online ensures that your will to help others can be met.
Joanna is a local Winnipeg musician. I met Joanna though another project we both recently worked on, that required her to play and sing a little for the camera. Her smile lit up the room and she had such a great attitude. I knew I had to get her into the studio for a few pics.
You can learn more about Joanna and her music at her website
Chateau prides itself on providing quality workmanship and great customer service so we strived to create images that supported those sentiments. We shot a variety of work they’ve done and then captured the staff hard at work in their workshop.
After I posted my image of figure studies to this blog, I received a message from Katy. She was inspired by my images to try to pose for similar images. I knew Katy through working together briefly and of course through her yummy blog Katy’s Kitchen. When I first met her, her confidence and assuredness stood out and her short hair just rocked, so I knew we’d get some great images!
We did the shoot, and had a great time,all the while talking about all the interests we had in common: music, photography, feminism, body issues and social media. Through it all we created a ton of great images. I really think her confidence comes through in this photos.
When we were scheduling the shoot, Katy hinted that she had reached some sort of milestone in her life, so in preparation of this blog post I asked if she could maybe talk about the decision behind doing this shoot and what the experience was like. She eagerly agreed to but I was completely floored by her reply.
“As a survivor of sexual assault, standing half naked in front of a camera lens left me feeling exposed, vulnerable, and afraid—but also empowered. Like many other women, I have had the ownership of my body stolen from me. As a result, I am cautious and hyper-vigilant, especially in situations where the possibility of a threat exists.
Being partly unclothed in a photography studio was, to my brain, a very real threat. But having these photos taken was entirely my choice, and taking the opportunity to use my body for art and personal growth was indescribable. When I left the studio I was overtaken with emotion. I felt powerful, beautiful, and strong—but also emotionally exhausted. Fearing danger is draining. But as I look through the photos from that day, in my eyes I see true resilience.”
Katy has written more about her experience for the Manitoban here
Before she revealed the back story to our shoot I was already honoured she asked me to photograph her. But learning of all this I was humbled that she has chosen me to be the one to create these images for her.
I feel everyone deserves the opportunity to see an image of themselves in a light that’s positive and uplifting. I consider it one of the greatest gifts to be able to use all the tools I have developed over the course of my career to create those images.
Thank you Katy.