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Klondike Kettle Corn

One of our favourite projects so far this year was getting to work with Klondike Kettle Corn to develop some new imagery for their upcoming website re-launch and marketing materials!

Anyone who follows the work we do, knows we love working with small businesses and entrepreneurs, and getting to know Katie and her family was no exception. We got to do some lifestyle images with them, and they even braved the -40 weather we happened to get that weekend so that we could get some authentic Yukon Outdoor lifestyle shots! They were total pros the whole time. Our computer/tether system, however of course decided it didn’t want to work in -40, so we just did without….

Then, we went into a new realm that we haven’t tried before…food photography! For this set, we partnered up with Tara Kolla, a local stylist, who came to the GBP studio and worked with us for the day. We were so happy with how these turned out…and we can also confirm these flavours do in fact taste as good as they look. There was a LOT of taste testing going down…And our computer/tether system enjoyed this temperature a lot more.









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Haiti

Reflecting on the past 12 months, we realized that 2018 was a year of serious ups and downs.

Professionally, we were lucky enough to work with a number of incredible clients on projects that took us all over the Yukon, Canada, and even to international countries. The result was some of our favourite work to date. Personally, however, we experienced heavy times and suffered the losses of loved ones.

It was a year of learning to adjust, and a reminder to really reflect on what’s important in life – to stay true to the values that we, as a family, and as a company, have tried to always live by.

So it only made sense that the end of 2018 brought one final project that was also filled with ups and downs – a project that has left us reflecting on it ever since Gary returned home, 

This November, Gary was lucky enough to be part of a team of Yukoners who travelled to Haiti with Shot in The Dark, a Yukon-based media production company. Shot in the Dark is creating a documentary that features the story of a Yukon woman, Morgan Wienberg, who created an organization in Haiti called Little Footprints Big Steps. It’s a child protection organization that focuses on family reunification and building self-sufficient futures for families in Haiti. Gary’s job was to create the stills for the project, including portraits of the families and people the documentary will feature, and behind-the-scenes shots of the filming process.

Morgan is an incredible person, with a fascinating story (we’ll be sure to let you know when the documentary is released so you can learn more). She has become part of what we now understand is a powerful community of people in Haiti, who have survived unimaginable circumstances, and yet remain some of the most kind, dedicated people Gary has ever met. 

We knew the trip itself would come with some challenges, the most obvious simply being the logistics of shooting in a foreign country. Gary had to pack as light as possible (difficult for someone who loves his gear), yet be ready for a variety of situations, as he didn’t really know what exactly he’d be shooting until he got there. Then there’s the heat (hello plus 30 degrees), and the fact he wanted to understand Haiti’s complex history before he visited. Haiti is the poorest country in the western hemisphere. For generations, the country has suffered political unrest and horrific natural disasters. It has had to completely re-build and that process is still on-going.

The whole team, Gary included, did research on the country, got all of the necessary medications and vaccinations, and arranged insurance coverage for both gear and health. We also had some idea, as far as what to expect while they were there, (the risk of theft, and health issues, are just realities you need to be aware of), though we never could have anticipated the politically motivated riots that began just days after the crew arrived. 

They suddenly found themselves in a situation where the location they were at was deemed unsafe as the conflict reached them, and they had to be moved to a safe house further away. The one thing that remained constant during that stressful time, was the incredible compassion the Haitian people showed every single member of the crew. They were taken care of, moved to a safe location, and made to feel completely at home with their new ‘family’.
Instead of carrying on with their planned itinerary that week, the team ended up witnessing the real-time actions of the Haitian people in the face of adversity. They witnessed people taking care of each other, people adapting, and people putting others before themselves. What they saw was the REAL Haiti, not just the clips we usually see on the news from our houses in Canada.

During his time there, Gary was able to photograph most of the Little Footprints Big Steps staff, as well as their families. These wonderful people, who are all locals other than Morgan herself, are part of a comprehensive team that cares about the children they work with as if those kids are their own. They help children escape from the horrible conditions that plague many of the orphanages in the country, and help the kids get off the streets and back to their families. Some of them are house mothers, some are doctors and nurses, and some are engineers. All of them work for this organization because they want to help re-build their community and their country. They are proud of their beautiful land and culture, as they should be. It is an incredible place, filled with resilient, compassionate people.

And as I sat here in the Yukon one night in late November, with our two-year old daughter Mabel, feeling a million miles away from Gary, we got to FaceTime with him and two of the children that Little Footprints works with. Even though the kids all spoke a very different language, they communicated through smiles, giggles and by showing each other their toys. The Haitian children even teased Gary the way Mabel herself does, laughing and gathering around his phone. The only difference between them was that they happened to be born in two different countries. 

Our little girl is now at the age where she’s starting to better understand the world around her, and I hope that, through the work she sees us do, she continues to grow. I hope she understands why projects like this one are so important to us. Gary was away from home for nearly three weeks, at a time when our family was grieving the loss of loved ones at home, and adjusting to a new normal. This wasn’t easy, but we never questioned whether or not he would go. It is fundamental to us that we, as a family, and as a company, are doing what we can to support others who are making positive changes in this world – in our community here in the Yukon, and in our global community. Because even though there’s a lot of heavy in this world, there’s even more good. You just have to be willing to get out there and experience it.

Huge thanks to the Little Footprints crew for all the love and hospitality you showed us and the rest of the Shot in The Dark crew.

If you want to learn more about the organization, or donate, you can go to check them out at: https://www.littlefootprintsbigsteps.com/

Mike Code showing off his Drone

BTS of interviews in process

The Crew left to right: Gary Bremner, Mike Code, Kelly Milner, Marty O’Brien and Naomi Mark

And for some reading on the complexity of Haiti’s history, you can check out the book “The Big Truck That Went By: How the World Came to Save Haiti and Left Behind a Disaster by Jonathan Katz.

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Traditional Territories uncovered

A few weeks back, Gary was invited to a very special place for the Kwanlin Dun people. For thousands of years, their ancestors have hunted caribou on high mountain ice patches where the caribou go to escape the flies in the summer.  Now, due to climate change, these ice patches are melting and revealing artifacts that are some of the most well preserved specimens archaeologists have ever seen in this part of the world. 

The ice has preserved organic materials that are thousands of years old, and normally have long disappeared.  They have found projectiles with actual feather fletchings still on them! They have found moccasins, arrows, bone tools, and have even found and entire person. The quality and amount of discoveries has created a whole new type fo archaeology that now looks into melting ice patches specifically.

One of the best parts of the day for Gary, was hanging out with an elder that used to come to hunt in this very spot with her family, but hand't been there in over 40 years! Gary was lucky enough to hear her stories of walking all the way there with only the things on their back so they would have room to pack the dried meat all the way back to their home at Fish Lake.

What an incredible experience, to not only be at that important archeological site where people have been hunting caribou for thousands of years, but then also to be there with an elder who actually hunted there with her family as a child, watching caribou just hanging out on those same ice patches today...

Huge thank you to the Kwanlin Dun First Nation for having us out on their traditional territory to help them document such an important part of their history. It was truly an honour and un-unforgettable experience.

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From Board Rooms to Burning Buildings...

So this summer has been busy to say the least...but that just makes it an exciting one!

Gary just got back recently from an assignment in Ontario, covering GoldCorp's 2018 Mine Rescue Summit. This was nerdy Gary's dream gig as he got to bring in all of his past experience with high angle rescue, fall protection and love of knot tying from his Communication tower building, and safety lead days. 

Mine rescue teams from every Goldcorp operation were brought together for a week of intensive training and the GBP team got to create both 'in action' and environmental portraits of the whole experience.  Emergency scenarios included everything from first aid, to high angle rope rescue, low visibility search and rescue, confined space rescue, firefighting, train derailment, aircraft extrication, and underground mine rescue! Again...nerdy Gary was stoked....

It was such a diverse assignment, as Gary's style of 'on site', documentary style work definitely involves getting as up and close as he can to the action. This meant he took the opportunity to renew some safety certifications like fall protection before heading out, and that he had to work very closely with the extremely strict safety protocols that were in place. 

In addition, our awesome drone pilot, Mike Code of Burning Grouse Productions, came along so that they were also able to get vantage points that would have been impossible from the ground in a safe way, which allowed for some really unique shots!

Then there was the battle of the 30 degree humid Ontario heat to work in while they were photographing rescue scenarios in front of 30 foot tall flames...

Needless to say, one of Gary's favourite assignments as of late. As our whole business is centred around photographing people and organizations at work, we are so lucky that we get to experience quite a variety of assignments throughout our year. From board rooms, to burning buildings...it's always an adventure, and we wouldn't have it any other way!

 

 

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T1D. A Portrait Series

Earlier this spring we were lucky enough to be asked to do a portrait project for an amazing local organization called the Yukon T1D Support Network.

This organization provides peer supports, education, and advocacy for Yukon citizens diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes, many of which are children. 

As part of an awareness project, the organizers wanted us to create a series of portraits of various community members who are either diagnosed themselves, or are family members of people who are living with T1D. 

We were so honoured to be able to work with such an inspiring group of people and were so excited with how they turned out.

If you, or someone you know has T1D and is looking for more support, advocacy, information or just a place to connect with some pretty amazing people-you should check out the Yukon T1D Support Network! 

 

 

 

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A Legacy Portrait Project: Mining in the Yukon

It's Mining and Geology week here in the Yukon, and so we wanted to take the time to share one of our latest projects with the Yukon Chamber of Mines, the "Our Yukon, in it Together" Legacy portrait series

It was such a great experience getting to work with such a diverse group of people over the past few months, learning about their experience in the Mining industry, or about how the industry supports their organizations and communities. 

From the on the Geologists working on site, to the aviation industry, to the hospitals and communities than benefit from fundraising efforts.... We were so happy with how the portrait series came together to showcase the various faces and experiences behind the industry.

For more info on the campaign, check out http://www.ouryukon.ca/ , and to find out more about what is happening this week, go to:  http://www.yukonminingweek.ca/ 

And finally, a huge thank you to all of the community members who were a part of this series:

1) Joella Hogan, First Nation of Na-Cho Nyak Dun

2) Al Doherty, Exploration Geologist

3) Wendy Tayler, Alkan Air and Kaetlynn Mitchell

4) Brad Thrall, Alexco Resource Corp.

5) Samson Hartland, Yukon Chamber of Mines (and his eldest daughter Cadence). 

6) Mike Burke, Senior Geologist

7) Karen Barnes, President of Yukon College,

8) Karen Forward, Yukon Hospital Foundation

9) Josh Clark, Whitehorse, Yukon

10) Shelagh Rowles, Centre for Northern Innovation in Mining, Yukon College

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So...what do you do?

Ahhh networking...and the, what 'should' be an easy answer, that is actually more complex than you think....

I went to an "Un-Networking" event this week hosted by the oh-so-awesome SMRT Pop Ups team which sought to give local female entrepreneurs a chance to connect, share, and in some cases, just straight up practice answering the question "What do you do?"

The expected/easy answer for me?: We are a photography company that specializes in commercial, corporate and editorial photography.  

Even more broad? Well, we photograph people. People at work, people at play, and people doing the activities that matter most to them and their community.

But after taking some time to really think about it, I realized that still just didn't feel like it fully explains what we do. It felt flat to me, and it got me thinking about the reason we do the work we do...the reason we work specifically with businesses and organizations. 

Now that is because we love getting to the heart of WHY people do what they do.

We understand that we, as a society, crave connection. We crave authenticity and experience, and so when a business or organization wants to engage with their audience, the best way to do that is by personalizing themselves, and creating that actual human connection to their organization. By showcasing employees, or the people behind what you do, you can not only show your audience what you do, but more importantly, WHY you do it. 

As entrepreneurs ourselves, we love to celebrate  businesses and organizations and the people behind them that build our communities, that are providing for their families and that are making a difference in this world in their own unique way. We can connect with their experience, their struggles, and their determination, and so it's our job to then take that connection and create images that can reflect that back to a broader audience.

Needless to say, the event left me thinking a lot about our work here at GBP. About the complexities of it-the human connection and interpersonal skills it takes, the mix of both technical and artistic sides of our business that constantly keep us on our toes. It was a great night to reflect on not only WHAT we do, but the WHY we do it. And it's got us feeling pretty grateful to have such a strong community of entrepreneurs and community leaders that we get to hold up and celebrate.

 

 

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Showcase your company: Creating a photo library

One of the most popular services we offer our clients, is creating photo libraries for them.

In order to stay current and relevant with online marketing, one of the most beneficial things for a company to do is to have a library of images that they can pull from on any given day. 

So instead of having a few standard shots that are used throughout different platforms, many of our clients instead are asking us to do a series of images, so that they have more to utilize over a longer period of time. In this way, they have a larger variety of media to choose from, and can therefore react to current events, or simply have better control over what media and images are highlighted over time.

We love this type of assignment as it really relies on our ability to shoot a variety of different scenarios and locations, but still retain a consistent look/feel for the client so their media is diverse but also cohesive all at the same time.  Sounds like a challenge!? We'll take it...

Today we thought we'd share a few examples from a recent photo library we created with the City of Whitehorse. It was so fun over the course of a few months to work with such a large variety of departments, in order to showcase the variety of work the employees do. From winter to summer, office work to heavy machinery, we got to highlight it all. 

If this is something you're interested in more of, give us a shout at info@gbpcreative.ca and we can chat about how a photo library might be useful for you!

 

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2018...the year the blog comes back...

Last year we took a little break from blogging. We had a new member join the GBP team (our daughter Mabel) and so paired down a little bit on some things to get her situated in her new job as future assistant for the company. 

But  now that we're all back in the full swing, we decided it was time to dust off the old Blog sharing skills and get back into it, so with that, thought we'd jump in by sharing one of our latest projects here in 2018!

We recently did some portraits for our friends who are starting up their new production company, Outpost 31. These guys are pros in the film industry, now combining their talents under one roof and so were looking for some new imagery for their website launch! 

Keep your eyes out for projects coming your way from Outpost 31...

 

 

 

 

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2016...that's a wrap!

It's fair to say that 2016 has been a memorable year all around. The world stage has been a scary one at times, but some great things have happened as well. 

Personally, we welcomed our baby Mabel onto the team, and we've done some of our favourite assignments to date. We flew to a variety of sites all around the Yukon this summer, curing Bri of her fear of flying (thank you Alkan Air for being so awesome!), we've worked with artists, politicians, and business owners. And most importantly, the thing we were most proud of in 2016 was our "This is how I really feel" mental health series that was shown at the Yukon Arts Centre this summer. 

Today we've taken the time to reflect on everything that 2016 gave us-the good and the bad, and we look forward to another year of adventure ahead. We have assignments booked that are going to take us to other countries and cultures, we have re-occuring and new clients that we are planning projects with, and most importantly we are planning some good family and friend adventures to remind us what is really important at the end of the day.

So on that note, we wanted to share a review of our 2016 year...This doesn't include everything, but it's a great overview of the breadth of assignments we got to take on this year. 

We wish everyone a fantastic new year-we hope the next year is a great one. Be safe out there tonight-be kind to one another, and let's make 2017 an awesome one!

Bri and Gary 

 

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