Supremely Justified

I photographed an interview with Canada’s Supreme Court Chief Justice Beverley McLachlin recently and was lucky enough to get a few minutes to make this portrait in the upper halls of the Supreme Court of Canada. I had a full lighting kit with me, not knowing what I was going to be able to use, but decided that nothing was going to be better than these pools of natural light in the hallway. When all the elements line up, simple is sometimes the best.

Cheers, Blair
blairgable .com

Game Winning Punch in the Face

I have been setting up a remote camera in the rafters this season and a few images have come out of it. Here are some frames from the last Ottawa Senators home game I shot.

Los Angeles Kings’ goalie Jonathan Quick looks up after Ottawa Senators’ Jason Spezza (not shown) scored the game winning goal during the third period of their NHL hockey game in Ottawa November 22, 2010. REUTERS/Blair Gable (CANADA)

Ottawa Senators’ Jason Spezza (top) celebrates his game winning goal with captain Daniel Alfredsson during the third period of their NHL hockey game against the Los Angeles Kings in Ottawa November 22, 2010. REUTERS/Blair Gable (CANADA)

And Ottawa Senators Chris Neil got punched in the face.


Cheers, Blair
blairgable .com


Over the years I had the good fortune to photograph Canada’s former Governor General Michaelle Jean in her duties as GG and Commander-in-Chief of Canada’s military. Here is a collection of my favorite images.

Canada’s Governor General Michaelle Jean in her final days of office at Rideau Hall in Ottawa September 28, 2010. Photo by Blair Gable for Macleans Magazine

Canada’s Governor General Michaelle Jean is overcome with emotion while speaking about crisis in Haiti following Tuesday’s earthquake in Ottawa January 13, 2010. REUTERS/Blair Gable (CANADA)

Canada’s Governor General Michaelle Jean inspects the honour guard before the Speech from the Throne on Parliament Hill in Ottawa March 3, 2010. REUTERS/Blair Gable (CANADA)

Anthony Le (R) hides behind his daffodils before giving them to Canada’s Governor General Michaelle Jean to mark the beginning of the Canadian Cancer Society’s annual daffodil month at Rideau Hall in Ottawa April 1, 2010. REUTERS/Blair Gable (CANADA)

Canada’s Governor General Michaelle Jean, dressed in a Canadian Air Force uniform, adjusts her hat after a moment of silence during a ceremony to mark the 70th anniversary of the Battle of Britain in Ottawa September 19, 2010. REUTERS/Blair Gable (CANADA)

Canada’s Governor General Michaelle Jean shares a laugh with gathered media following a tree planting ceremony at Rideau Hall in Ottawa September 30, 2010. REUTERS/Blair Gable (CANADA)

Cheers, Blair

Ladies Killing Circle

Earlier this year I was assigned the most complicated shoots I have ever done. I was asked by MORE Magazine to shoot a feature for them on a group of mystery / crime / murder writes from Ottawa called the Ladies Killing Circle.

First I had to find a studio with a cyclorama wall (very few in Ottawa) – then I had to talk them into painting it black. I needed to find more studio lights to compliment my set and an assistant that would be able to help me get everything set up. I needed to find hair and make-up and had a stylist help with the posing. The set was also catered – luckily there was a caterer just up the street. The ladies had their own costumes from a Clue party that they had gone to earlier, but I was afraid they would look to “costumey” and had to source alternate pieces and props. After a few days of panic, I found a great retro store in Ottawa that I was able to hand a list of items to and they had everything put together for me a few days later.

My other big concern was for the chemistry on set. Since I was half their age I was not sure how they were going to respond to me and with them being writers I was not sure how much they would be into the shoot. By the time hair and make-up was finished they were having a great time and they shoot went really smoothly.

This may not have been a large undertaking to some shooters, but since I am used to rolling into someones house with a location flash kit and 20 minutes to spare, this was a big shoot for me. Lots of lights, pre-planning, much running around and sourcing materials. It all worked out well in the end and the issue of MORE magazine is on news stands now!

Cheers, Blair
blairgable .com

Lighting Mark Schaan

I recently received a commission from the University of Waterloo Alumni Magazine to photograph a Young Alumni Award winner in Ottawa. The photo guidelines were very specific as it needed to stylistically match photos taken by other photographers for this issue. Here is what I received from the photo editor:

Photo Guidelines
Subject: Positioned straight on to the camera. no side view, 3/4 view etc.  looking straight into lens.
Lens: 50mm F1.2 or 1.4  shoot at and aperture of F2.0-2.8
Focus:  Focus to be on the eyes of the subject with focus falling off at the ears
Lighting:  Soft rim light around the subjects (Strip Lights), large 60″ plus, Umbrella or Octobox above and on axis in addition to an on axis fill light ie. ring light – minimizing but not totality eliminating the shadows.

Here is what it looked like.

Here are the breakdown shots, showing what each light source is doing.

1) Octobox on right. 2) Ring Flash (with a pillow case draped over it) on the left.

3) Strip light with grids on Left. 4) Strip light with grids on right.

Here is the setup.


It was a hell of a lot of equipment in one room! Congratulations Mark!


Cheers, Blair

Let’s Hit P.K. Suban

The Ottawa Senators had a hate on for Montreal Canadiens’ P.K. Suban the other night and were hitting him all over the ice. He put up a great fight and is a very talented hockey player. At one point he was stick handling the puck with one hand and shoving Peter Regin to the ice with the other. Other than that it was a pretty boring game. Enjoy!

Cheers, Blair

Goodbye Michaelle / Hello David

Michaelle Jean’s term as Canada’s Governor General has ended and David Johnston’s has just begun. I personally felt that Jean was a great GG. She was always compassionate, caring, empathetic and had a killer smile. I was in Ottawa for most of her term as GG and will post some of my favorite images that I have made in another post coming soon.

Good luck GG Johnston, I will see you at the next Order of Canada ceremony.

Cheers, Blair