Paul39 Apr 11
Wonderful shot. Congrats.
pbilk Apr 12
This is beautiful! A rare shot. The sun it beautiful the subject right in the centre looks great too with the cityscape in the background.

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Jan, 2018

Frozen City

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Submitted to Photo Contests


Won Runner Up in Towards The Horizon Photo ContestJuly, 2018
Won Contest Finalist in Towards The Horizon Photo ContestJuly, 2018
Won Contest Finalist in My City Photo ContestJune, 2018
Won Runner Up in Covers Photo Contest Vol 45April, 2018
Won Contest Finalist in Covers Photo Contest Vol 45April, 2018

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Behind The Lens

This image was taken on Lake Ontario at Polson Pier in Toronto when it was frozen over during a polar vortex. At the time I was in the photography program at Humber College. So this would have been in January of 2015. That day our classes were cancelled due to the extreme weather. So a few of my classmates and I met up and hit the frozen lake. The person in the shot is well known portrait photographer Jeff Isy. At the time this felt like a once in a lifetime chance because this portion of Lake Ontario rarely freezes like this. It had been so cold from the vortex that you could literally drive a transport truck on the lake. Earlier this year the lake froze over like this again but it was pretty short lived. I think it lasted maybe 4 days whereas this was frozen solid for a few weeks.
We were there for several hours but this would have been around 4pm.
It was your typical sunset on an empty landscape but it was so cold that the air was crisp with no clouds.
This was taken with a Canon 6d using a 16-35mm F2.8 lens and a rotating neutral density filter.
Pure stupidity! Ha ha! I set out to get a winter shot of the city during the winter but running out on a frozen lake with -40 windchill with high winds wasn't the nicest of circumstances. However, we endured. It was a spur of the moment decision to go out there and we certainly weren't dressed properly. I had a heavy down coat on but only had jeans and hiking shoes for my lower body. Certainly not the safest and smartest move.
Most of the post-processing was done in Lightroom to adjust colours but there was some added work in Photoshop to bring back some detail in the man.
In my camera bag
My bag houses a variety of equipment but it changes from shoot to shoot. If I'm out capturing landscapes I typically have my Nikon d800, a cheap Nikon 24-85mm kit lens, a Nikon 24mm tilt sift, Venus Optics 15mm macro wide angle tilt shift, sometimes a Sigma 70-200mm f2.8, a tripod, a Platypod Pro plate (I can't tell you enough how versatile Platypods are), a Cambuddy Pro trigger (super handy to have), and Lee Filters products. For Lee Filters I typically use a polarizer, the Big Stopper, Super Stopper, a grad ND and a wide angle hood. For Portraits I mix it up a lot depending on the size of the space I'm shooting in. Usually it's my Nikon d800, Sigma 70-200mm f2.8, Sigma 105mm macro f2.8, Nikon 85mm f1.8, and a Nikon 50mm f1.8. If I have to go wide then I'll add my Nikon 24-85mm kit lens, while that is typically considered a crappy lens I find it really versatile and surprisingly like it better than a 20-70mm lens. For lighting I use a pair of Godox AD200s and a pair of Godox v860ii's with a variety of modifiers and your basic 5 in 1 reflector.
Dress warm and protect your gear. That kind of cold is really harsh on equipment. The motor in my old Canon 16-35mm made some funky sounds and was slower after that day. Invest in some really good gloves. That day I kept having to take my gloves off to switch lenses or remove my ND filter and it was not fun. I've since bought some heavy duty mitts that come with glove inserts with rubber grips. Having the freedom to take out my hands with glove inserts that allow me to control the buttons on my camera is essential. On top of that the mitt portion has a slot to insert heating pads. In terms of using a Neutral Density filter: a good chunk of the colour and especially the gradient in the sky was created by the rotating Neutral Density filter I had at the time. I'm not sure I'd recommend a circular ND filter like that as it easily creates a lot of unevenness in skies if you're not careful. If I were to do the again I'd use a reverse grad filter. It would definitely give a cleaner look and reduced colour casting.

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