Return To Blog 13 May 2015

Change your lens, Change your story - My day with Graeme Murray

We caught up with keen photographer, and talented snowboarder Leon Thomason, to find out exactly how his day with professional photographer Graeme Murray had helped change his story.

Spending the day with Graeme Murray was truly an amazing experience; learning more about my camera & what it can do, but also helping with my overall approach & thought process and how by adjusting the way I think about taking photos, I can achieve my desired results.

Graeme taught me how to read a situation and create an image that tells a story, just by pausing the subject. Having access to the EF-S 10-18mm f/4.5-5.6 IS STM landscape lens allowed me to position Ben better within the environment and really focus in on the skill he has on the bike. A skill that really helped me to perfectly portray the entirety of what was happening in front of me.


The idea of simply changing my lens to change my story sounds over-simplified, but in reality having the complete lens kit allowed me to capture different perspectives, which opened my eyes to the many different ways I could best portray a situation. Looking over the shots, there’s no way I could’ve shown the texture and detail of the EF-S 60mm f/2.8 macro lens in a landscape shot. Also, being able to get in close gave the viewer a better understanding of what the scene was really like.

Since the shoot I have pinned the printed photos around my house: my favourites being the shot of Maria clapping with the chalk on her hands and Ben’s off the line hole-shot. Both of these are completely unique to their lenses; the EF 70-300mm f/4-51.6 IS sport lens allowed me to stand at a substantial distance away from Ben, which compressed the background enough to create a sense of how far he was leading by. The shot of Maria was taken with the EF 50mm f/1.4 portrait lens and really helps to soften the background and completely affirm her as the subject.


All these lenses create such different & unique finished products, as all of them have completely different purposes. As a snowboarder, I have always gravitated towards the wide-angle lens as it helps show size & direction, but I will definitely be carrying my entire kit with me up the mountain this winter & put my new skills & knowledge to the test.

If you'd like to find out how you can win a day shooting with Graeme Murray, as well $2000 Canon Dollars to upgrade your lenses & also get one of your shots published in New Zealand Geographic as part of a Canon Ad, make sure you head to to find out more!