Welcome to 2011.

Author: Ngoc

Did you make any resolutions this year? Interestingly the majority of people give up on their resolutions by mid-February and though most know that this happens, year after year, they will continue to make new resolutions (or reattempt old ones). I heard that people continue to do this because it feels good to make goals. In those few minutes when you are committing to make changes or better yourself, you invision the ‘new you’ and how your life will change due to these resolutions. These images of your ‘better life’ are enough of a reward for us that we will continue to make resolutions even if we know we are destined to fail at them. For those of you who have been successful at accomplishing your resolutions, please give us some of your tips.


One of my resolutions was to make better use of my camera. That brings us to the 365 project.

We’ve decided that our photography skills need some sprucing up. What better way to do that than to just get out there and start shooting? We’ve committed to participating in the 365 project, a photo for every day of the year. Not only is it a great way to make yourself pick up the camera, but it also helps to capture memories and document our year. We’ll be posting them on our Flickr account and we’ll post a mosaic of some of our favourites on this blog every now and then. Here are a few from the first week of 2011.


Dragons’ Den

That’s right. We’ll be appearing on Dragons’ Den for the second time. Tune in to CBC on Wed Jan 12, 2011 at 8pm. Send us your thoughts and comments after the show. Here is the video from when we were on last time.


Tradeshows

We’ve been at The Needle Arts National Assocation tradeshow all weekend where we officially launched our newest product, Heel, with great success. If you plan on attending Vogue Knitting Live in New York City, make sure you stop by our booth to say hi. Here’s a video of us setting up at TNNA over the weekend.


Heels, hand-knit socks, and photo shoots.

 Author: Ngoc

I’m fascinated by photography and lighting. I find photo shoots extremely interesting and just the other week, I was able to go to another photo shoot for our newest product, Heel – foot cream for feet worthy of hand-knit socks. 

I am always impressed by the whole process and the beautiful results that we get. The above photograph was professionally taken by Jessica, our wonderful photographer. The following images are from my camera as I documented our day.

The day started off with a quick brainstorming session of different pose ideas so that Jessica could get an idea of how to set up the backdrop and what lighting we would need. We then tried on some of the hand-knit socks that were designed and made by Kate Atherley, a Toronto based knitter, designer and teacher. I never understood the fascination/obsession with hand-knit socks until that morning. They were beautiful and comfortable and hugged my feet in this way that only hand-knit socks can. Some of our Heel labels will feature Kate’s beautiful socks. If you are thinking of a fun gift idea for your favourite knitter, why not pair a tub of Heel with the accompanying sock pattern? Visit Kate’s online store for her designs.  

Esther and I were the lucky feet models for the day. After a few hours of tippy toes, pointing, and stretching, I have gained a new appreciation for feet models. I don’t know whether my feet and toes are just terribly out of shape or what, but after holding a pose for 10 mins with slight movements, I started to get cramps galore. As we looked at the images appearing on the computer screen, it was fascinating to see how the slightest movement in the toes or the smallest change in the direction that your feet were pointing could completely change the feel and attitude of the image.  

I am always impressed by a beautiful photograph and am constantly asking for tips and advice on how to improve my own photography skills. I find that once in a while, I’ll fluke into a decent photo. I am still striving to take that one photograph that I am proud enough to display on my wall but alas, nothing as of yet.

Here are a few of the tips that I’ve gathered along the way.

1. Welcome to the wonderful world of digital. Just snap away. For every wonderful photo you see, that person probably took 90 mediocre ones. Take a lot of photos. Look at them and figure out what you did wrong, what you like about them, and what you should do differently next time.

2. Catch the light. When photographing people, spin them around and look at their eyes. Stop spinning them once the eyes catch the light.

3. Photos don’t always need to be artistically beautiful. They are about capturing your memories and emotions. A photo might not be impressive to anyone else, but if it brings you back to a wonderful moment or invokes certain wonderful emotions in you, then it’s a good photograph.

4. A good camera and a good lens doesn’t equal a good photograph. I’ve seen people take wonderful photographs with their camera phones. There is so much more to photography than just the equipment.

5. If you’re new to the SLR world, take the time to learn about ISO, aperture, and shutter speeds. Don’t waste a perfectly wonderful camera by only shooting on auto. Try manual. It will open up a wonderful new world.

Do you have any fun photography tips? Please share, I’d love to hear them.