Photography

(This section of the site is still under construction; we're adding to it as time permits. Check back soon for more!)

Our artistic division offers professional photography services in Kingston, Ontario and neighbouring cities.

What we can do for you

If you need an artist's eye for a special or unusual project, I might have what you're looking for.

Matthew Marsh's work is distinguished by:

  • Professionalism. You're dealing with a photographer who is respectful, client-focused, and whose projects come in on time and on budget.
  • Reliability. We follow through on our promises, and our client communications are second to none. You won't be caught off-guard by a last-minute change in plans.
  • Diversity of artistic styles. There's a visual style to express almost any mood or idea, and we aren't afraid to try something new or unusual.

 

A Few Favourites






People

I like to experiment with dramatically varied lighting styles and compositions, mixing things up a bit more than you might get in a commercial studio.

Elegant, professional portraits with the standard lighting styles are of course always an option. Given the opportunity, though, I might go for a deep, rich chiaroscuro light. Or a harsh, edgy film noir style. Or a veiled, misty high-key look. Or, in a long enough session, half a dozen different styles. Or perhaps something crazy I haven't thought of yet. That's the fun of it.

Portraiture can be a documentary form, striving for accuracy and fidelity of reproduction. It can also be about moods and feelings, using light and body to ask questions and tell stories. In some cases, the story to be told is your own, and the two classes overlap; in others, the story is pure fantasy and the portrait tells a tale all its own.

Pets

Dogs, cats, weasels, lagomorphs, rodents, even fish- if you can get it to stay still under the lights for more than a few seconds, I'll get a shot that's worthy of a frame on the living room wall. My wife goes through one Great Pyrenees every few months (we board them for the breed rescue club while they wait for permanent homes); they're very charismatic dogs and are fun photo models.

It takes a lot of patience to get good shots of an animal. Dogs in particular are fond of shoving their nose into the lens, looking the wrong direction, and knocking over lights. Pet shoots are a two-person job: I'll need your help to keep your animal entertained and doing more-or-less what we want him to do.

The results are of course worth it, and the memories the photos bring back will be priceless a decade or two from now when the pet is long gone. An hour or so of shooting is quite affordable, is all that most critters can handle in one go, and is long enough to get a nice set of beautiful, gallery-quality shots.

Canine Companions

Skyscapes

I'm fascinated by the infinitely variable textures and colours that Mother Nature can throw together with nothing more than air, water vapour and a bit of sunlight. Bringing out all the intricate details of the sky is an interesting technical challenge, but the art is in conveying the mood of the sky: from serene to stormy, every one is unique.

Moods of the Sky

Commercial

A well-planned professional photo can make all the difference to your brand image. If you need an extra artistic touch for a special campaign, I might be able to help.

  • Real estate
  • Events
  • Product launches
  • Corporate promotions & reports

Contact me, we'll talk, and we should be able figure out in short order whether I'm the photographer you need.

More galleries coming soon

This site is still under construction, and more galleries will be posted here in due time. For now, turn to my photography blog for an idea of what I've been doing recently.

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Preparing for your photo shoot

So you're going to have your photo taken. How do you prepare?

Pick a location

All of our shoots are on location. It might be at a public park, or a conservation area, or your office, your house, a friend's house.... it's a long list of possibilities.

If you don't already have a location in mind, I can probably suggest a few suitable choices based on what themes and feelings you want the photos to convey.

Choose clothing carefully

The fashions you choose should reflect your own personal style. A portrait is about you, and how you want to be seen.

For standard portraits, you should choose colours that complement, rather than clash with, your skin and hair tones. If you're dark-skinned, then darker fabrics with rich colours will tend to look better than white fabrics; similarly, light skin and blonde hair tend to photograph better when paired with lighter clothing colours. You can of course break this rule if you want a sharper, edgier style.

Undergarments with buckles or wires often create distracting lumps in the outer layers of clothing, and are best avoided in favour of smoother versions that don't create visible wrinkles and bumps. If you plan to change or remove clothes during the shoot, try to avoid tight-fitting garments that might leave marks on visible skin. Jewellery of any kind is quite all right if it's part of your normal style, or if it's part of the style you want to convey in the photos.

Hair & make-up

You're certainly free to put as much effort as you like into your hair and make-up, if you so choose. I'm far from an expert in this area and you are welcome to have this professionally done if you're so inclined. Generally speaking, though, I find portraits work better if you stick to your own personal style, whatever that may be. Don't worry about the occasional pimple; these are easily corrected in digital post-processing.

Bring your music

Familiar muisc will help you to relax and to enjoy the photo shoot. If we'll be shooting indoors, or if we're shooting outside in a single location, feel free to put on whatever music makes you comfortable. (Modern pop, classical symphonies, '70s rock, baroque opera, '80s metal- it's your call, I won't judge.)

For outdoor shoots where we'll be moving around a lot, though, a stereo might be a bit too much to carry around.

Bring a friend

As citizens of the modern world, we are striving for a society in which everyone is respectful and everyone is safe, and nobody would dare to violate that. Modern reality is, unfortunately, lagging somewhat behind the ideal. Call them what you will- creeps, douchebags, pervs, whatever- there are still dangerous actors out there, particularly where younger women are concerned.

I can tell you with absolute certainty that we are not among that crowd, but you should never trust your safety to someone you don't know. So please consider bringing a trusted friend to your photo session. Or hiring a ninja. Whatever makes you happy- it's your shoot and your call.

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Photo Rates

Current photo pricing is as follows. Ontario's 13% HST may apply.

Session Fees (On Location)

  • Standard sitting fee:
    • $150 setup cost
    • Plus $50 per hour of shooting
    • No limits on who or what we shoot during that time (ie. no per-person fees)
  • This includes:
    • Travel within Kingston, ON (Travel to locations outside Kingston is billed at $0.60/km).
    • Basic digital retouching (cropping, colour balancing, airbrush skin blemishes, etc.)
    • Web-quality JPEG files of all good photos (photographer's selection), on FTP or CD.
    • Permissive licence terms (or Creative Commons licence) allowing you to use and share the photos non-commercially.
  • Extra equipment: Some very complex photo shoots may require additional equipment to be rented, such as exotic lenses or ultra-powerful lighting. If this is the case, we'll include these costs in the initial estimate. The rental costs will be billed to the client.

Digital Files

  • Print-quality JPEG files from your shoot (including permissive non-commercial usage rights):
    • Individual images (client's selection): $15 each
    • CD/DVD set of all good photos (photographer's selection): $3 per file, typically about 30 to 60 photos per hour of shooting
    • Files can be colour-managed for a particular printer if you have that machine's ICC profile, straight sRGB or AdobeRGB otherwise
  • Advanced digital retouching (also available as a stand-alone service): $65/h

Gallery-quality prints (including reprints of published work)

  • 4"x6": $15
  • 5"x7" or 6"x8": $20
  • 8"x10": $30
  • 12"x18": $40
  • Larger formats or non-standard media: Call for details.

Postage within Canada is included, foreign postage is added at cost. Our prints are made on Fuji Crystal Archive or comparable paper using the time-proven silver halide photochemical process. We provide a lifetime guarantee on all our prints: If it fades, we'll reprint it for free.

Commercial Shoots / Use of Stock Photos

Commercial shoots often call for more complex contracts and licence agreements. The rates listed above will apply to the shoot itself. To that, we can add a commercial exclusive use licence whose price depends on the nature of the project.

The cost of commercial licences, whether for a commissioned shoot or for stock photos from my collections, is in general accordance with CAPIC fee schedules. Contact us for details.

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