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Photography

Photography Travel

Infrascapes: Keukenhof Gardens

This past Spring, I traveled to the Netherlands for the first time with my daughter. We happened to be there right in the middle of tulip season, so it was imperative that we pay a visit to the famous Keukenhof Gardens. The gardens were not far from Amsterdam and even closer to where we stayed in Haarlem. We bought tickets for the gardens at the tourist center in Haarlem. Our tickets included a bus ride that let you off a few blocks away. Keukenhof is massive and there were a ton of people spread out over the large gardens. This place is a flower-lovers dream! Thousands of varieties of tulips and many other flower varieties are arranged along various pathways dotted with buildings that contained more flowers plus cafes and gift shops. There were bike rentals (of course!) just outside the garden entrance so you can cycle around the tulip fields in the area.

I took an incredible amount of color photographs while I was there but also had my infrared camera with me. Here’s a few of my color infrared photographs that I shot during that visit:

 
For more images, check out my Steller story:

For more images, check out my Steller story:

Photography Travel

Happy 150th Birthday Canada!

July 1st is Canada Day and this year Canadians are celebrating Canada’s 150th birthday.  On July 1st, to honor this special celebration, I spent most of the day gazing through 15 years of photographic archives and selected 150 of my favorite color images shot in Western Canada where I was born and raised.  Oh Canada, my home and native land.  You’re so beautiful!  Here’s my Canada 150 in a slideshow:

Canada 150 – Happy Birthday to my home and native land! from Carol Watson on Vimeo.

Music Photography

SXSW Music Festival 2017 – A foray into concert photography

Returning to Austin as part of the SXSW Festival Photo Crew was great fun. It wasn’t my first time taking part in SXSW, but it was the first time I was on the SXSW Photo Crew team. I spent 7 days working on assignments during the festival. I photographed sessions and events for the SXSW Interactive, SXSW Film, but the more challenging and memorable assignments were for SXSW Music. It was grueling for me working late into the night, but being such a music-lover, I’d definitely do this gig again!

Here are some of my favorite concert photography shots from the festival.

(top) Bonus Junk, (bottom) Cut Chemist with Mr Lif and Myka 9

(top) Mobley, (bottom) Keeper

(top) Twister, (bottom) Weaves

(top) Mantra, Matthew Logan Vasquez, (bottom) Jimmy Eat World

(top) Tokyo Police Club, And You Will Know Us By The Trail of Dead, (bottom) Panthéon Roccoco

(top) Pantéon Roccoco, (bottom) Ozomatli

(top) Ozomatli, (bottom) Residente

(top) Residente, (bottom) Agnes Obel, Albin Lee Meldau

(top) Maggie Rogers, (bottom) Charlotte Cardin, Rag’n’Bone Man

Photography

Night to Shine 2017 – Special Needs Prom

This is the second year in a row that I was lucky enough to be the portrait photographer for a prom for teens and young adults with special needs in McAllen, TX. Sponsored by the Tim Tiebow Foundation and United Health, the  Night to Shine 2017  event was a collaboration between Calvary Baptist Church along with local non-profit charities including Capable Kids Foundation (my daughter is the president), AWARE-RGV, and RGV Down Syndrome Association.

The prom was a great success and the ballroom at the McAllen Convention Center was packed with hundreds of people having a wonderful time! All the planning and hard work by my daughter and the team of organizers and sponsors made this a very special evening for these young people. There were volunteer make-up artists, hair stylists and shoe shiners at the event throughout the night to bring out the beauty of each teen and young adult. You could see it in their faces as I photographed them — they felt amazing. Once again, I took the approach to provide very basic direction and let each of them decide how they wanted to pose. I wanted the final portrait to be an extension of their personalities. Here’s a small sample of the portraits of these amazing young people from this memorable evening.

Photography Travel

Infrared Photographs: Faves from 2016

I traveled a fair amount again this year and my infrared converted Nikon D300 comes with me. I thought I’d finish up 2016 with my favorite infrared images from my travels throughout this year.

Zion National Park (left), Barcelona, Spain (right)

Santa Maddalena Val di Funes, Italy

Lago di Carezza, Italy (left), Passo Gaiu, Italy (right)

Passo Sella, Italy

Las Fallas in Valencia, Spain

Barcelona (left), Mineral de Pozos, Mexico (right)

Val d’Orcia, Tuscany, Italy

Near Cortona, Tuscany, Italy

Passo Giau, Dolomites, Italy

Michoacan, Mexico

Michoacan, Mexico

Check out more of my images by viewing my story on Steller:

Life in Mexico Photography

Calacas and Catrinas

One of my favorite traditions to photograph in Mexico is Dia de Los Muertos. This year, since our streets in Pozos are undergoing major construction, many events had to be canceled. So, I spent a couple of days in San Miguel de Allende and photographed the various calacas and Catrinas that are abundant during Dia de Los Muertos and the annual La Calaca Festival. A rainstorm put a damper (literally) on the events later that night, but the rain held off until the end of the Catrina parade. dotd2016-01 dotd-2016-036 dotd2016-02 dotd-2016-064 dotd2016-03 dotd-2016-069 dotd-2016-053 Check out more of my images by viewing my story on Steller:

Photography Travel

The Italian Dolomites in Infrared

Photographing landscapes in digital infrared can yield some interesting and surreal results. I brought my coverted Nikon IR camera with me to Italy. Check out my digital infrared images of the Italian Dolomites by viewing my story on Steller:


Music Photography

Dad, your work on Earth is done.

On July 6, in the middle of the night, I got the call from my brother that I knew would eventually come, but was not prepared to hear — my father passed away back home in Canada. My Dad had not been well (with dementia and bladder cancer) but his sudden passing was still disquieting for us because we didn’t have the opportunity to be by his side when he took his last breath.  That alone has been a great source of heartbreak for me.

My father was a humble and kind man who worked so hard to give us a reasonable life despite barely scraping by for many years. I owe my work ethic to him. Dad was a softy and his eyes would often tear up when talking about both happy and sad times. This he passed down to me as well.  I also get my sense of humor and wit from him. He was a great storyteller. My brother Gord and I made sure to include many stories about Dad in his eulogy, which we delivered together. There was laughter at his memorial and he wouldn’t want it any other way.

We laid his ashes next to the grave of my brother, Tom (who died in a tragic work accident at the age of 19). It had been cloudy and threatening rain most of the day. When my brothers placed his urn in the ground, the sun came out and radiated warmth upon us — it was like Tom was sending a warm welcome to my Dad. It made me smile through my tears.  I’ll never forget that moment.

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The view from where my father and brother lay to rest is beautiful.

Before I left the Crowsnest Pass, I stopped at two of my Dad’s favorite fishing spots along the Crowsnest River. The first is a spot near the Frank Slide where Dad took me fishing when I was a teen. I scattered some of my father’s ashes in this beautiful and peaceful spot.

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The second place that I stopped at to remember my Dad was Lundbreck Falls.  He loved fishing there too.  I spent quite a bit of time here in reflection and remembrance before I scattered some of his ashes in the water at the bottom of the falls. Now his spirit flows along with the river.

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The song my family chose to have played as we processed into Dad’s memorial service was “Go Rest High on that Mountain” by Vince Gill. It was a perfect choice.

Rest peacefully, Dad. Love you forever.