Echoes of Niagara’s Past – Timeline 2014

This weekend I participated in a reenacting event at Fort George in Niagara on the Lake. Titled “Echoes of Niagara’s Past” it covered Canada’s military history from the War of 1812 to present day. Included displays of 1812/1837 reenactors, WW1, WW2, Vietnam, and others.

I participated in my first blank-fire reenactment as well as myself and WW2 reenactors “battled” against the german team. I even got to fire the anti-tank cannon, but it misfired and didnt work 😦 Haha.

I decided to go a little bit retro with the way I captured pictures over the weekend. The following images were shot on Kodak Ektar 100 ISO 35mm film. I absolutely love the way they look, and so did the people being photographed.

 

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Hooters Summer Ads

Everyone knows that Orange is the new Black.

Not just a show title on Netflix, but Hooters’ uniform of orange and black (sometimes orange and white, or white and camo, or black and referee stripes.. 😉 ) has become a brand that everyone (alright, probably just men) recognizes.

I was recently hired to photograph some advertising photos for Hooters in Niagara Falls, and after all the fun and excitement of the bikini contest they had me photo last month, I figured “why not?”

We photographed a number of pictures for different events such as the World Cup, football, and golf. Here’s a few quick samples of what we produced – including when sometimes your props dont fit your models’ head!

Make sure to visit Hooters on Ferry St in Niagara Falls to meet the awesome staff and enjoy the great food. 2 minutes from Clifton Hill.

Tell ’em Sam the photo man sent ya.

 

Four Points Sheraton – Coming attractions

Over the past few days I was hired by the Four Points Sheraton Hotel in Niagara Falls to photograph their promotional material for their new summer attractions opening soon.

What a great time. I can’t say enough good things about the marketing and graphic design folks there. All very top notch people and very professional. I’d gladly work for them again if they needed me.

Currently in the final stages of preparation is a glow-in-the-dark minigolf, a haunted house, a mirror maze, and a laser tag arena (pew pew!).

My job was to photograph the wicked cool interiors as well as some wonderful models testing out the new areas. It was really interesting and a great learning experience to photograph under black light conditions and having almost zero visibility inside. I often had to light the scene with a flashlight in order for the camera to focus on what we were trying to shoot. Said flashlight also doubled as a pointer to often indicate “Hey you, move here.” Hahaha.

I’d like to thank my friend Stella Froese as she once again wore many hats and not only visualized the end graphic product but also directed our scenes and made them that much better.

Here’s a selection of the photos we captured. These images are a combination of ambient light and fill-flash (for you photographically inclined.)

 

Hailey is coming! – New Maternity pictures

Hello friends,

This past Saturday afternoon I got out to Niagara-on-the-Lake (The snow finally melted!) and photographed my friend Dave and his wife Alison, who is expecting their first baby, Hailey.

We randomly ran into each other at our friend Simon’s army surplus store (how I met Dave originally, through airsoft games) before the shoot, and them not knowing the area, followed me down the long road to NOTL.

The following is a sample of the pictures we made together. Dave had Alison laughing constantly, it was great to work with relaxed people on a nice afternoon in the sun.

Closing of the Neo Wrestling Federation – a retrospect.

Caution: long post.

One of my favourite and most prestigious clients, the Neo Wrestling Federation, has suspended operations effective as of Jan 9, 2014 (Last Thursday of this writing). I, like many of you reading this, was very shocked and upset at this sad twist of events. I always had fun at these shows. I got paid to do what I enjoyed, and my friends were getting paid to do what they enjoyed as well. Everyone was on the same page (for the most part) and working towards the end goal – pleasing the audience.

These shows were always the highest in quality. Always in the 4-to-5 star range if you were to grade them (my opinion)…I cannot recall ever having a bad show.

After the show most of us usually went to eat downtown in Niagara Falls. It was here that the real memories were made (for me at least). Sometimes only a few people showed up, sometimes everyone showed up, sometimes everyone and their significant other showed up. No matter who was there, you always had a good time. We shared a lot of laughs and had a lot of fun, and couldn’t wait to do it all again….but next time wont be coming for awhile. With all events being put on hold, I realized I might not see my friends for awhile, and that made me kind of sad. Sure you can talk to people online or have video calls, but it’s not just the same. I guess I like the human experience better. So since I might not see my friends for awhile, I will post a few thank-yous and memories here in no particular order –

To Stella: My top-most favorite graphic artist of all time. I hope to work with you again soon. You are the bestest!

To Allysin Kay: We’ll have a legit conversation about art one day….

To Cherry Bomb/Pepper Parks: Thank you for being cool people. I wish both of you all the best.

To Courtney Rush: One of the most ‘real’ lady’s I have met. We will discuss Metal Gear in depth one day. Snaaaaaaaaaaake!!!!!!!

To “Toofy”: My fav camera-man ever. It was always a pleasure to share ringside with you. I will see you soon.

To Pat, aka SUPER CRAZY Pat: My 2nd fav camera man 🙂 The only man I’ve seen climb a gym bag on a chain to get up to a better position in the rafters, and then sit up there all night in the heat. Much respect sir.

To Jay Moore: We met what seems like forever ago in the New Vision days. I am glad we got to become friends. Thanks for always putting me over. It means a lot. (Please note, no one ever calls him Jay…he is always called by his full name.)

To Topher Whiteman: One of the hardest working men at Neo, always prepared… and the only guy to actually pull off bungee cord suspenders. See you soon my friend.

To Tyson Dux: Always in a good mood. Always a top performer. Always the first guy to work the new kids. Always a good person. Don’t change.

To Dangerboy: The man that started it all way back when. Thank you. It’s been quite a ride so far.

To Cody Deaner: We didnt speak much, but you’ll always be one of the best to me.

To Nick Vickers: THE safest man on the planet. The best. Greatest Uke of all time. “#GOATUKE”

To Crazzy Steve: Thanks for the laughs bro.

To RJ Ciiiiiiiiity: One of the most entertaining people I’ve met. Thanks for the laughs.

To Psycho Mike: I will have a bag of marshmallows just for you next time I see you.

To Shawn Spears: Keep “making those towns” down in Florida….maybe I’ll see you there one day…

To Jake O’Reilly: Please get Pissbeater merch made. PLEASE.

To Darko: Thanks for always having an ear to listen to me.

To Scotty Turner: Another one of the hardest working guys I know. Thank you for being a good friend. See you soon.

To Andy Davis: I still owe you pizza………it’s on the internet now. It’s here forever!!

To James Ponce: Thanks for continually having me over for “meetings” (watching wrestling pay per views).

To Paul Tappay: Runs the best comic shop in Niagara. THE BEST.

To Jaxon Jarvis: “…………this blog………professional.” Please make more videos!

To Carm, my fellow wop: The man with the plan that always knew everything. Keep running a tight ship.

To Stickball: More Carbonie slams on kids please.

To Asylum, the 3rd wop: Please make Dr. Kirschenbaum a bigger thing.

To Renda: Team Ref Bump never dies. It just hibernates. It’s a shoooooooooot.

and finally –

To the mastermind, the king, the mad scientist, the boss, Jesse: We met way back in your “crazy” cycle, and when I told you the story of that you couldn’t really believe it! Afterwards you once called me your adopted son… That will always stick with me. I have been…and always shall be… your friend. Thanks for giving me my break, “Dad”.

Thank you for reading.
Live Long and Prosper.

– Sam

Thanks & Praise

I usually try to not believe my own photography hype, because then egos get super-inflated and that never ends well for anyone.

At last night’s wrestling show however, when 6 people pull you aside within a 20 minute span and tell you: “Hey man, you’re pretty good at this wrestling photo thing, and you are super professional too. I’ll even go out on a limb and say you’re the best in Ontario. You always have a respect for the business and for everyone else.”

That kind of praise and validation gets to you on a personal level, makes you feel good about what you are doing. And sometimes that’s just what you need.

Thanks guys and gals.

However I would be remiss if I didnt thank the teachers that got me here today, so I’m gonna do that now.
Thanks JT, Robert, Greg, Dave, and the facebookless Mike, Stephen, Grace, and Scott for giving me the tools to do this job.

And there is one other guy that I feel I need to put up here for giving me this job in the first place. Thanks Jesse.

Shooting with Carm

This past weekend I had a fitness shoot with Carm, who is also a pro wrestler and a personal trainer.

He just placed 2nd in an Ontario-wide fitness competition, and aims to grab first place in the 2015 competition, using all of 2014 to max out his muscle gains.

This Saturday him and wrestling partner “Stickball” Tony Carbonie will face The Flatliners and Turner & Davis in a 3-way match at Neo Wrestling Federation’s Prophecy of Pain.

Here’s a few pictures from our shoot.