When I was a kid…

When people ask me how long I’ve been taking photos, they’re often surprised by my answer. I was in Grade 5 when my parents bought me a Kodak 110 point-and-shoot camera to capture memories of summer camp.

In Grade 8, my parents took me out of school one day to watch the launching of a new ship in Collingwood. It took two and a half swipes of the film advance to get to the next frame, and I did that as fast as I could. Swipe, swipe, swipe, click! Swipe, swipe, swipe, click! until the 24-exposure roll of film was finished. I got the processed pictures back days later and showed my classmates and teacher the near flipbook images. I became the unofficial class photographer that day.


I don’t have those pictures anymore, but I do have an album of my March Break trip to France with my Grade 13 French class. Looking back at those images, I see that I already understood how photography was the art of capturing light. Take for instance the photograph I scanned and posted here. I took this image of stained glass from inside Notre Dame Basilica in Paris. I remember being in awe of the coloured light shining into the dimly lit historic site.

Going to journalism school, I learned to use a 35mm camera, which gave me better control of the images I took. Unfortunately, working for more than a decade as a reporter/photographer took the joy out of photography for me. There were too many pictures to take of people nervously posing on days I wasn’t feeling inspired.

In recent years, no longer forced to take pictures every day as part of my job, I’ve rediscovered my passion for making art with my camera and I’m so glad I did. I hope you do too when you see my creations at FlashDesignsStudio.com.

COM0014 – Blog # 6 – My Story

I am a personal chef. This means that I cook for people – for a living. The funny part is, I haven’t always cooked. It’s a relatively new thing for me. In fact, when I first met my husband, I didn’t cook at all.

When I was growing up, I really didn’t need to know how to cook. Both of my parents were excellent cooks. Sure, they taught me some basic things, but I wasn’t jumping in to contribute in the kitchen.  I preferred not to.

When our two children were born I was fortunate enough to be able to stay at home with them when they were babies and toddlers. Apart from the new mommy jobs that occupied my time, guess how I filled my days? By playing in the kitchen.  At first it was out of necessity. I found it difficult to get my toddler son to eat veggies. So, I learned all kind of ways to hide them in his food. Then, soups became my specialty. I could load a soup with all kind of wholesome goodness for my family. I was making huge stockpots full of soups and stews and curries, and then freezing them and giving them away to friends and family. I started getting all kinds of compliments, which encouraged me to keep going and to try new things. One friend in particular encouraged me to try this as a business. So I took her advice and earned a certificate from the United States Culinary Business Institute as a personal chef.

So, I guess you never know where life will take you. I certainly never set out with intentions of becoming a personal chef. Some basic interest, practice and cheering from peers, led me down this road.

COM 0014 Blog Post#5 – Personal Brand

HelloMyNameIsLeahHello, my name is Leah. And this is my story.

My experience is a collaboration of photography, marketing, advertising and graphic design and for over 10 years I have been using these mediums to translating my vision into a reality. Everything I do as a designer and photographer is fueled by the world around me, taking inspirations from everything I do and see.

When I asked my clients and peers to describe me, I was continually told my creative and enthusiastic personality compliments my versatility as a designer, photographer and marketing professional.

It is a very competitive world and difficult to differentiating yourself especially as a designer. I don’t claim that I can do it all but I am confident in my strengths, acknowledge my weaknesses and focus on my wide range of skills. I take pride in my ability to look at any initiative from both sides of the fence, a creative perspective and a business standpoint, giving me the vantage point I need to create eye-catching design while effectively supporting business objectives.

My strategy is to evoke and amplify emotions with my designs and make a connection that will cause someone to do something.

My tactic is understanding a client’s need and taking their vision to the next level. I am always looking for ways to change the boundaries of the box.

There are always challenges, limited resources to overcome. There is always going to be something working against me. There are also opportunities for me to embrace, sources to leverage and new ideas to expand on. Without ignoring those challenges, I focus on those opportunities. And this will give me success in my career.