Madison Rexx in B&W for M.INK Magazine

February is usually seen as a gloomy month, but that isn't the case - esp with the recent notice that one of my editorials was published.

Within weeks, planning started with the concept "Dark Floral Elegance" created by Amanda. I scouted a few locations across Toronto and began testing various lighting setups to match the dark look and feel of mood board. Shortly after, we gathered a great team including hair stylist Caitlin Quelle, make-up artist Liliana Diamantopoulos, fashion designers Irina Shad and Mia Parese, and lastly the models Amanda RobynMasha Mez, and Beatrix.

PDF tear sheets below!

I would like to thank the entire team for their hard work and dedication with this shoot. It was a grueling 10+ hours both in Studio 311 and on location to make this editorial happen and I couldn't be happier with the results.

Be sure to grab yourself a copy of M.INK Magazine (Volume 4) - in print or digital!


Photo Credits / Specs:

© 2017 Giancarlo Pawelec | PAWELECphoto
Model: Madison Rexx
H/MUA: Madison Rexx
Location: Studio 311 (Toronto, Ontario, Canada)

Camera: Canon 1Dx
Lens: Canon 70-200mm f/2.8L IS
Lighting: Natural Light

"Dark Floral Elegance" Fashion Editorial in Emboss Magazine

At the beginning of 2016, I met and photographed Toronto model Amanda Robyn for a creative project. Shortly after, we began discussing our second shoot  - one that would be an edgy fashion editorial and also involve a solid team of talents.

Within weeks, planning started with the concept "Dark Floral Elegance" created by Amanda. I scouted a few locations across Toronto and began testing various lighting setups to match the dark look and feel of mood board. Shortly after, we gathered a great team including hair stylist Caitlin Quelle, make-up artist Liliana Diamantopoulos, fashion designers Irina Shad and Mia Parese, and lastly the models Amanda RobynMasha Mez, and Beatrix.

After months of waiting on its submission status, the fashion editorial was published in the January 2017  issue of Emboss Magazine. It's also worth mentioning that they did a little artist interview on me, so be sure to have a read and flip through the PDF tear sheets below!

I would like to thank the entire team for their hard work and dedication with this shoot. It was a grueling 10+ hours both in Studio 311 and on location to make this editorial happen and I couldn't be happier with the results.

Be sure to grab yourself a copy of Emboss Magazine (Issue 6) - in print and / or digital!


Photo Credits / Specs:

© 2016 Giancarlo Pawelec | PAWELECphoto
Creative Director: Amanda Robyn
MUA: Liliana Diamantopoulos | Liliana Makeup Artistry
Hair: Caitlin Quelle
Fashion: IRINA SHAD (lingerie) and  Mia Parese (all else)
Set Design: Giancarlo Pawelec
Models: Amanda RobynMasha Mez, and Beatrix (Agency FH)
Location: Studio 311 and the Pavilion of the Sherbourne Common (Toronto, Ontario, Canada)

Camera: Canon 1Dx
Lens: Canon 24-70mm f/2.8L, Canon 50mm f/1.2L, and Canon 70-200mm f/2.8L IS
Lighting: Elinchrom Quadra Hybrid with 2 A-heads with Gels and Speedotron Black Line with Octabox, Black V-Flats
Misc: Fog Machine

Getting Inspired & Informed at Stand Out Photo Forum

A few months ago, I learned about a unique multi-city event called the Stand Out Photographic Forum. The Toronto stop of the event kicked off last week at Hangloose Media studios, bringing with it a great variety of presenters and vendors. The event concept is quite simple as each hour a notable speaker (such as Renee RobynErika BlattSteve RichardJoseph Cartright, and others) would present their body of work, speak about their creative process, and answer questions. As if that wasn't enough, many stuck around and mingled with attendees, as well as playing with some of the toys on display.

Upon entering, there was a raffle table full of amazing prizes ranging from a Capture One Pro 9 software license key to a Wacom Intuos Pro (medium) Pen Tablet and much more! Surely I didn't hestiate to sign up for each and sure enough, I won myself a Phase One golf umbrella. Unfortuantely, I wasn't able to trade it in for a Phase One XF camera system - boo urns!

There were also a few schools showcasing their photography program, including that of Fanshawe College who also brought some of their students out to the event. Although I was self-taught in photography, it's always good to know that there are now many educational routes available for those wanting to get into this artistic medium and career.

For those itching to try the latest and greatest in photographic gear, both Broncolor Canada and Phase One (courtesy of B3K Digital) brought out a wide assortment. Earlier in the year, I got a chance to try out the new Phase One XF 100MP camera system and loved everything about it, especially the vast dynamic range and file resolution. As for the Broncolor lights, they're loaded with the latest firmware allowing one to shoot up to 1/8000th with the HyperSync feature and triggered with the all-new Broncolor RFS 2.2 transmitter - available for Canon, Nikon, and Sony. It's worth mentioning that these new triggers are only $156  (CAD) and available for order through B3K Digital.

For photo editing, I'm one of the rare "mice warriors" still around, but that might soon change with Wacom's introduction of the new 27" CINTIQ creative Pen & Touch Display. Sure it's massive in size and priced at roughly $3000+ (CAD), but the ability to edit on the actual image file unlike the conventional tablet-pen setup whereby hand-eye coordination is key.

At a table nearby were a few copies of notable fine-art nude photographer Steve Richard's new photobook titled Obscuro. The book encompases photos of art-nude models underwater in such serene poses and moods that is unlike any other work I've seen before.

For those looking to get their hands-ons and capture some images, there were two unique studio setups. The first was still-life featuring a bowl of (fake) fruit and the second was portrait / fashion in the cove. The lighting setup was courtesy of Broncolor Canada utilizing a Move 1200L pack paired to a Para 88 as a key light (on right) and the new Siros L 800 monolight mated to the massive Para 330 (on left). As stated above, Broncolor has made a big leap into the high-speed sync game and with the latest software update, the Move 1200L pack and Siros L can now shoot in HS mode at 1/8000th of a second!

Captured in this shot (in the middle) are photographers Steve Richard and Joseph Cartright discussing lighting setups.

Lighting the massive 10.8' umbrella with 24 braces (better known as the Para 330FB) was Broncolor's new battery-operated 800Ws Siros L. This new cordless monolight is truly amazing allowing for 220 full-power flashes from its Lithium-Ion battery, has a recycle rate of 0.3-2.7 seconds and a short 70-minute complete charge time! If you've ever wanted a lighting solution for when on-location (even in the most remote of areas), the Siros L is the perfect go-to!

After waiting for my turn in the fashion / portrait studio setup, I fired up my Canon 1Dx paired with the new Broncolor RFS 2.2 C transceiver and began photographing Joy - the beautiful model on hand. To me, she had this look that was a cross of Uma Thurman in Pulp Fiction with the softness of Amélie. The lighting setup utilizing the Para 88 (as key) and Para 330FB as a full wrap-around fill was truly amazing as it provided just enough contrast to sculpt her face. 

For this final frame, I didn't want to go too deep with editing so I kept things simple so as to showcase the quality of light from the Broncolor units. Feel free to click on any of the images for the larger resolution version. Aside from socializing with fellow photographers, the event was an overall great experience that allowed me to draw inspiration from other's styles and be informed on their workflow process. I firmly believe that you can learn something from everyone and this Stand Out event surely made that possible!

A big thanks must go out to Will Prentice for the silly cover shot of me jumping in front of the large Para 330FB (shot at a ISO 64, f/3.2, and 1/8000th), the helpful B3K Digital staff, all the vendors on-hand, and the amazing speakers that made the trek to Toronto to present their work.

For more information, please visit Stand Out Photographic Forum. To grab your Broncolor and Phase One gear, contact B3K Digital.


Photo Credits / Specs:

Cover Photo: © Will Prentice | Captura Photography+Imaging 2016

© 2016 Giancarlo Pawelec | PAWELECphoto
Location: Hangloose Media (Toronto, Ontario, Canada)

Camera: Canon 1Dx
Lens: Canon 24-70mm f/2.8L and 70-200mm f/2.8L IS
Lighting: Broncolor Move 1200L w/ Para 88 (key light) and Broncolor Scoro S 3200 w/ Para 330FB (fill light) - Used on model.

Second Harvest’s Harvest Kitchens Program Photoshoot at the YMCA Cafe

For the past two years, I have been involved in capturing images for Second Harvest - my favourite charity organization in Toronto. Started in 1985, the organization is unlike any other in that it rescues surplus food, prepares meals with the items found, and delivers them to those in need across the city - to the tune of 100-million lbs! Their motto is simple and to the point, "No Waste. No Hunger." and I couldn't agree more. It is unfortunate that hunger is still a prevalent issue in this day and age, especially in a world-class city such has Toronto. According to Second Harvest, "1 in every 8 Canadian families struggles to put food on the table... 32% of the food bank's clients are children."

On an early morning last week, I packed up my gear and headed to the YMCA Cafe to photograph YMCA culinary students doing meal preps before the delivery truck arrived for the usual daily drop-off / pick-up routine. With less than one hour to capture everything and having to deal with some shy-types, I sprung into action.

The produce and products that these students work with are all salvaged from distributors, grocery stores, and restaurants all across the Greater Toronto Area. With these goods, they're able to create delicious and nutritious meals for up to 25,000 people daily.

Working in the hot kitchen was this lovely lady making a type of beef and potato stew that smelled incredible. A big smile on her face and a great attitude are what makes the Harvest Kitchens program such a success. Adults and youth needing to gain skills for employment can earn their experience while helping out thousands in need. A true win-win recipe!

Rounding out the shot list, I had to get some showcasing the actual meal containers being prepared. Each one of these trays is filled with some great meals including Butter Chicken, Roasted Potatoes with Beef, and others that are then shipped off to food banks and program centers around the city. Just before 9am, the rush began to get everything ready and like clockwork the entire crew went into action like a well-oil machine.

Always arriving with fresh produce and a smile on his face is Santiago - one of four drivers that makes rounds daily doing pick-ups and drop-offs.

Parked in the shipping area awaiting the transfer of produce and prepped food trays, the Second Harvest truck looks like a gateway to happiness for many across Toronto. It was a pleasure to not only witness how this great program works first-hand, but also to lend my time and skill set behind the camera. Even though it may be cheesy, I'll end this blog on a quote that truly struck a cord with me and it will for you as well.

What counts in life is not the mere fact that we have lived. It is what difference we have made to the lives of others that will determine the significance of the life we lead.
— Nelson Mandela

For more information on how you can help this great organization, please visit Second Harvest.


Photo Credits / Specs:

© 2016 Giancarlo Pawelec | PAWELECphoto
Clients: Second Harvest
Location: YMCA Cafe (Toronto, Ontario, Canada)

Camera: Canon 1Dx
Lens: Canon 24-70mm f/2.8L
Lighting: Canon Speedlite 600EX-RT

Digital Photography Meets Digital Music with DJ Eelke Kleijn

Much like my passion for photography, I find music to be essential in life - be it when shooting in the studio, during my daily commute, or even when relaxing at home. Regardless of what mood one might be in or in my case trying to evoke from a talent on set, music's magic just makes things better. Fridrich Nietzsche put it best, "Without music, life would be a mistake" and I couldn't agree more.

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