April 8, 2015

Perception – The Shaw Conference Centre as Photographic Inspiration

A new perspective on an Edmonton institution

The Shaw Conference Centre is a unique structure built into Edmonton’s beloved river valley in 1983. When the centre was first constructed, it was revered for its architecture and design. Now, at 32 years old, it is difficult to find an angle or shot that hasn’t already been captured. That is until Chris Tse asked us if he could photograph the building. As Chris began to release his pictures on social media the number of new likes, comments, and shares on his posts were exceptional, growing from a few hundred to over one thousand per picture. We quickly realized that he had given Edmontonians a new view of their convention centre; each picture was more unique than the last. Chris presented this building in a way it hasn’t been viewed for years.

"I’ve been inspired by many city-scape photographers who shoot in places like New York and Paris. I think Edmonton’s urban jungle can be a place of beauty much like other cities, but it is up to the photographer to capture it all.

“I’ve been inspired by many city-scape photographers who shoot in places like New York and Paris. I think Edmonton’s urban jungle can be a place of beauty much like other cities, but it is up to the photographer to capture it all.”

Intrigued by his creativity, we asked Chris – Why the Shaw Conference Centre?

“At some point in time, you have probably experienced a moment within the centre; whether for a graduation or a wedding, a meeting or a conference or, on your way down to the river valley. The Shaw Conference Centre is Edmonton’s gathering place. Shooting at dusk, I was able to capture vibrant colours and hues as they transformed with the building from day to night. I spent five hours watching and photographing, captivated by the interaction of architecture with the natural environment.”

“I was captivated by the interaction of architecture with the natural environment. This building comes alive at dawn and dusk.”

“I was captivated by the interaction of architecture with the natural environment. This building comes alive at dawn and dusk.”

Chris was able to capture the deceptive height and depth of the building that is not often seen until you walk up the 10 stories of intertwining stairs (an achievement for anyone!). The atrium, filled with thousands of different plant species, is overlooked when quickly passing through. The glass ceiling allows the sky to seep into the scenery; every thunder storm, sunrise, snow flake and sunset can be experienced from within the building.

“My goal was to capture this building's breadth and beauty and its interaction with our natural environment. Most of the photography around this area focuses on events, and we rarely see the beauty of the building.”

“My goal was to capture this building’s breadth and beauty and its interaction with our natural environment. Most of the photography around this area focuses on events, and we rarely see the beauty of the building.”

Thanks to Chris, SCC guests have a renewed appreciation for the subtleties of the centre. We hope the next time you’re here for a special occasion or meeting that you’ll take a moment to enjoy the surroundings of a building that’s embedded (literally) into Edmonton’s history.

Chris was born and raised in the Edmonton area. He is one of Edmonton’s fitness gurus, co-owning Blitz Conditioning with Brett Kirkland. Chris has a passion for community and says he owes the success of Blitz Conditioning to supportive Edmontonians. Photography is a passion of his that has morphed into part of his profession. He is a principle marketer at Blitz and considers sharing these community stories a part of his responsibility. His hobby has led him to discover different parts of Edmonton, capturing its magic through a lens.

Visit Blitz Conditioning for more info or follow Chris on Instagram and Twitter.

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