In August 2016 LensWork printed a book of 50 portfolios of 6-image sets from over 1900 submissions by their readers. My set of images taken of an old car at the Gallant / Patterson workshop was among those selected. My set is here.
A submission of aerial dune abstracts was published in issue #90 of LensWork (Sept/Oct 2010). Images appear in the print version as well as the extended version on DVD. (Click on the photos at right to go to the portfolio on this site.)
About Bill Young
Born in Toronto, I have made Ottawa home for most of the last 30-plus years.
Why do I photograph?
Like so many of us, I am compelled to create. We must feed the soul as well as the body. This is the fundamental reason that I shoot.
Past that, however, I am a visually oriented person. While I appreciate many other forms of art, the technical and creative aspects of photography hold a fascination for me. Photography is such a versatile medium, and the limitations are almost always within myself rather than the equipment.
Why do I photograph the subjects I do?
That's the tough question. Is there a hidden message that I am trying to convey? If there is, it is also hidden from me. Maybe all will be made clear in retrospect; however, knowing now might spoil the fun.
As can be seen from the images on this site, I am most drawn to shooting landscapes, preferably of remote, desolate and austere locations. The serenity is both soothing and enriching. Does this say something about me? Perhaps best not to ask.
What is important?
Connection. First, there's the connection between the photographer and subject, which is why you are there in the first place. Then hopefully you and your art connect with the viewer. It is always rewarding when someone comments on your presentation, AV show, or images on the web site. The connection can be anything from invoking an old memory, or a new appreciation for the subject of the presentation, or a desire to visit that location to experience for themselves.
Accomplishment and improvement. I compete now only with myself for a new personal best. The sense of accomplishment is good for the ego, but such small victories are hard won however, since I am a harsh critic of my own work. The victories are also short-lived, with other images requiring attention, and other projects that need planning and shooting. The challenge is continuous improvement. I want to be the most creative, most prolific, most authentic version of myself that I can be.
I've been fortunate to have a couple of portfolios published in LensWork magazine (see right panel).
The process. I enjoy the exploration and still feel that I'm on the toe of the learning curve, which is always a great place to be. I'm enthusiastic about the prospect that better images are waiting to be exposed, better prints to be made, and better AV shows to be created. As video clips are now easily available, yet more creative possibilities open up.
Along this path of continuous improvement, it is very helpful to seek the honest input of people whose opinion you value. In a small group we challenge each other to defend the emotional ties to some images that may not be worthy, and the potential discard of other images that should be salvaged. The discussions can be animated, always entertaining, but better images and AV shows invariably result from this level of peer scrutiny.
Sharing. In addition to my involvement with this small feedback group, I'm also a member of the RA Photo Club in Ottawa. I initiated the club's feedback group in 2002, and was co-winner of the Photographer of the Year award in 2007. I am also a member of CAPA (Canadian Association for Photographic Art) and contributed an article on fine art printing to the Winter 2007 issue of CAPA's Canadian Camera magazine (download pdf of article). Sharing is also enjoyably accomplished by making presentations to photo clubs and establishing those connections immediately with the audience.
Recent solo and joint exhibitions
Oh So Good, Ottawa, July-Aug. 2016
Mississippi Valley Textile Museum, Almonte, Sept. 2015
City of Ottawa Archives Gallery, Nov.-Dec. 2012
Recent and upcoming presentations
2017. Jan. 28. Ottawa. World Views travel talks, with Bill Pratt.
Jan. 3. Ottawa, RAPC. B & W Photography; group presentation.
2016. Dec. 7. Brockville, EAPA. Lessons Learned.
Nov. 1. Ottawa, RAPC. Landscape Fine Art Photography.
Apr. 18. Kingston Camera Club. Lessons Learned.
2014. Feb. 18. Ottawa. Camera Club of Ottawa. www.cameraclubottawa.ca/
Bill Vs. the Thousand Monkeys. New no-trans-fat formula.
2013. Oct. 26. Ottawa. Polar Bears and the Svalbard Archipelago.
Nov. 14. Ottawa. Namibia. Main Branch, Ottawa Public Library,
2012. Apr. 14. Ottawa, Orleans Photo Club. Bill vs. the Thousand Monkeys
Feb. 25. Ottawa. World Views talks, on Antarctica.
Feb. 21. Ottawa, RAPC. Bill vs. the Thousand Monkeys
Introduction to Fine Art Photography at Algonquin College, Ottawa in 2009-2010.
Many presentations on Lightroom, Adobe Camera RAW, histograms, and printing, primarily to the Digital Group at the RAPC. (Being a member of a club is always a rich 2-way learning experience. If you want to know if you understand something, try explaining it to someone else.)
I initiated the PhotoCritique (now Photo Feedback) Group at the RAPC in 2002 as a vehicle to encourage club members to articulate what they find compelling or attractive in certain images and not others. Obtaining feedback from judges comments in competitions is usually very limited.
Despite that, I have judged a variety of competitions at the RAPC and surrounding clubs. Since I dislike allocation of scores, I always do so with what I hope is useful commentary.
I have also provided customized tutorials to individuals or small groups on photography, Lightroom, Photoshop or digital printing.
Stock image use and representation
All of the images on this site are the property of Bill Young and may not be reproduced or used for any purpose without his express written consent. To do so is a violation of international copyright law.
Having said that, all the images on this site (and others) are available for commercial and editorial uses for an appropriate license fee. Please contact us with your interest and specific requirements (perhaps there is an image on file that better suits your need than what is shown on the web site), as well as the details of the intended use of the image.
A wide variety of images can be licensed through the Jaynes Gallery.
The first two books everyone should have, with different approaches to teaching composition and the construction of images.
Photographing The World Around You: A Visual Design Workshop by Freeman Patterson. Buy it, read it, go photograph, then read it again.
The Photographer's Eye: Composition and Design for Better Digital Photos by Michael Freeman (just a coincidence). A wealth of practical advice with many good examples for shooting in different situations and lighting conditions. Well worth a read.
The Art of Photographing Nature by Art Wolfe and Martha Hill. Art Wolfe is a world-renowned nature and wildlife photographer and Martha Hill was the picture editor at Audubon magazine for years. Here they present two separate opinions on a wide variety of images by Art. Very informative dialogue as to how to make a good image even better, and plenty of stunning images regardless.
Photographing Creative Landscapes: Simple Tools for Artistic Images and Enhanced Creativity by Michael Orton. The blur montage technique, frequently referred to as an "Orton", is but one of the creative techniques that are presented in a very clear format.
Robert Parke-Harrison: The Architect's Brother by Robert Parke-Harrison. A collection of created scenes that I would fail to describe usefully should I try. Very, very imaginative.
Art & Fear: Observations on the Perils (and Rewards) of Artmaking by David Bayles and Ted Orland. Two working artists combine to lead us through the angst, insecurity and self-doubt that we all feel. If you've ever asked yourself "Is this any good?" or "Why am I doing this?", then this book will be of help in understanding that these are universal questions. Don't expect any easy answers, however; there are none. Guaranteed to at least create the occasional knowing, wry smile. Highly recommended.
The View from the Studio Door by Ted Orland. A follow-up to Art & Fear, the author examines the role of the artist and art in today's society. Another great read.
A Beautiful Anarchy by David DuChemin. Some similar thoughts to the above two books, and a clear call to action. As I have said for a long time, there are choices to be made all the time; make them active choices rather than passive ones.
Truthbeauty (Pictorialism and the Photograph as Art 1845-1945), based on an exhibit curated by Alison Nordström. An excellent tour through the pictorialist period, which gradually ended with the swing to the super-realism of the f/64 style. This book should be of interest to anyone striving with modern techniques to create expressive photographs, as these are the roots we all build upon.
LensWork This is a bimonthly magazine publication by Brooks Jensen and Maureen Gallagher. Thoughtful editorials and articles by Brooks and other writers such as Guy Tal, and some inspiring photography. Primarily B&W, but now also some colour work, all superbly printed. And lots of other interesting bits on the web site www.Lenswork.com.
All images and site content copyright Bill Young 2017. All rights reserved.