How to step up your Social Media GAME, son!

Yesterday I had the pleasure of attending a panel discussion with some amazing people that work in social media marketing. They work with some huge companies like Yahoo, Virgin Mobile, MasterCard and Wonderland to name a few. They gave us a bunch of tips on how to utilize social media in more effective ways for business. Thanks to HumberLaunch for hosting such an awesome event! Below are the things I wrote down. Hopefully they help! Let me know how it goes (@cbagol - Twitter)

  • You need to engage the people that engage with you. Show them that you appreciate them for viewing and interacting with your posts. 
  • Don't just yell and hope people will listen. People will listen and appreciate it more when you talk with them one on one.
  • See what your competitors are doing and be different from them. You'll get noticed more often.
  • Be a business or be a human? You need to find a balance that makes sense for your brand. Some businesses require less of a personality. Some do. 
  • Post things that are relevant to customers but matter to you, as well. Don't just post things just for the sake of posting. 
  • Quality >>>> quantity/frequency
  • Ask yourself who are you trying to reach out to and what is the best way to do it?
  • You need to invest in social media. Monetary wise or with time. 
  • If you have a $0 budget for social media play to your strengths and cross promote with other brands. 
  • Engage and show your appreciation for people that are passionate about the brand. They can be turned into brand ambassadors. 
  • Find what makes you different and take advantage of it.
  • You don't have to use all the different types of social. Do what works best for you. Stick it a few and do them well. 
  • Tailor the things you post to social media to each platform. Each platform can be used to target a different demographic. 
  • Have a solid personal brand and build a good following for yourself. You can use it to leverage yourself over others. 
  • Marketing yourself serves your personal brand. 
  • Be specific when you reach out to other people to connect. Why are you talking to them? What's your purpose?
  • Facebook ads are super important.  Using Twitter is super important.

Here are the people that were speaking:
 

  •       Edwin Frondozo- Marketing & Business Development for Slingshot, @drgnmeme
  •       Shannon Hunter, Social Media Manager for Virgin Mobile Canada, @shananigans
  •       Alanna Glicksman- Digital Marketing and Community Manager at MasterCard Canada, @aglicksman
  •       Shannon Kelly- Manager of Public Relations and Special Events at Canada's Wonderland , @shankell
  •       Lindsay Lynch- Entertainment and Lifestyle for Yahoo Canada, @lindsaylynch
  •       Melissa Feeney- Social Media Manager for the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF), @melissafeeney
  •        Sophie McNabb- Social Media Strategist, @sophiemara88

Humber Student Life Halloween Fright Night 2014

Another amazing event with Humber Student Life! Below are my personal highlights. Mostly things that made me laugh. ALL the others can be found on my Facebook Page. Give it a like!

Startup Weekend Etobicoke 2014

I had an amazing time being a part of Startup Weekend Etobicoke 2014 this past weekend. Whether you're an entrepreneur, business minded person or just looking to meet new people I think you'll find this to be an incredibly rewarding experience. 

Here's a link to a gallery of all the photos I took. If you attended the event let's connect! Add me up on social media and send me an email! 

Real Talk Hour 2 - Stuck In A Rut

Being stuck in a rut doesn't have to be a bad thing. Of course it sucks but you're going to get out of it. Think of it as a time to reflect on what you're doing. Look at what's working and what isn't. Where can you improve? What could you learn? What have you achieved so far? Where do you hope to go? 
 

Start small. Think big. Move quickly. 


If you move quickly you'll never find yourself stuck. 

Neck Couture

Awesome time working with Dan from Neck Couture. Got a few product shots and hopefully going to kill it with some dope on location shots for their look book in the future. The products are so unique! Check them out! 

Hello my name is Dan Amponsah aka Kobi. I’m the Owner and Founder of Neck Couture. This all started with me always being a fashion minded individual with an entrepreneurial spirit that has been inside me waiting to erupt. I’ve always wanted to run my own business around something I enjoy and at the same time has a small niche to it. As a result, crafting custom bowties is where I’ve ended up. Neck Couture designs a unique array of bowties ranging from fabrics found across the world. There continues to be a growing trend with bowties reaching all ages young and old. Bowties first became noticable in the 17th century and in fact the necktie originated from the bowtie. I will bring bowties back like they never left! I believe it is important that everyone has their own fashion identity to remain separate from the masses and wearing a bowtie is a perfect example of that. Wearing a bowtie shows that you have a sense of style or creativity and Neck Couture will channel that inner fashion sense that everyone has customizing bowties to suit whats best for you.

Happy Tying.
— Kobi, Founder/Owner of Neck Couture

Neck Couture's website click HERE

Real Talk Hour 1 - Accept it and grow

Hello hello! Thank you for clicking onto the blog! Real talk hour is a thing a friend and I came up with when we want to talk about something on our minds. Hopefully you'll be able to take something from it. If not, it's therapy for me! So here we go...

There's been a lot cases where I've felt I've been wasting time. I think time is so valuable because it's the ONE thing in life that you can never get back. Love, happiness, success. It's all just another measurement of time. For quiet a large portion of my life I feel like I've been wasting a lot of time doing things that aren't related to my dreams and passions. It's frustrating because I inevitably end up comparing myself to people my age doing what I've been wanting to do and living MY dream. Who knows?! Maybe I wasn't wasting my time I could be like them right now. But y'know what? That's no way to think. 

There's no point complaining about the situation you're in. Yeah you might feel stuck and want to be doing something else. Something better or something easier.  But the fact of the matter is that you can't. You're here. This is real life. 

Accept it. 

 Good. Now how do you get past it? How do you change the situation? You make the most of out it. You treat all the hardship as a test. Every time something is thrown at you you take it and tell yourself that this is all training to make you a better person. Once you actively seek change you'll slowly notice that your problems disappear and are replaced with happiness. 

You're not in it alone. Keep your head up. The struggle will make the success so much sweeter

Retiring one of my favourite photos

I'm pretty sure this was one of my first ever photo shoots. It was crazy how we got this shot. The location was so sketchy but I'm glad they were down to join me. We drove to somewhere in Caledon and stopped at a silo. It was a good 150m away from the main road. I'm pretty sure someone owned the property and we were probably not supposed to be there. At first, I thought we were just going to take pictures outside until we got closer and I realized there was an entrance. It looked incredible! I was so excited. When I get excited on shoots I yell "whaaaaat" or a new word "doooooope". With the fear of getting some weird farm disease and falling through the dirty floor in the back of our minds we still managed to get some awesome shots. So glad I was able to shoot something like this and I'm grateful to have been with such cool people that day. 

Why am I retiring it? What does that even mean? Well this photo no longer represents my style and what I like to shoot. Even though I love it, I need all the pieces of my portfolio to work together and at this point it's too out of place. My style before was very sharp and grungy and I feel it has transformed to simple and natural. I guess that goes with how I was emotionally at those times. I'm a lot happier now. Do what you love. You'll be happier that way.

Thoughts - Humber 2014 Frosh Events

Spoiler Alert - SO MUCH FUN!

Hello beautiful people. I'm in a good mood. Why you ask? Shooting the Frosh events at Humber was incredible and I'm so happy with how my shots turned out. Can't wait to do more stuff like this in the future. I'm gonna be showing some pictures and talking about my thought process so keep scrolling. 

The first night was ElectriCity. It was basically an EDM concert like Veld. Here are some photos:

This was the first night of Frosh events. The goal for these photos were to get everybody excited about Frosh and wanting to buy tickets to go to the rest of the events. With that in mind, I wanted viewers to think that it was an fun, epic event with a lot of people. To do this I focused on getting shots of the crowd and used wide angles to play some camera trickery. The lights were changing constantly so it was a real tedious process to get something good. My approach was to wait for a good light that illuminated the crowd nicely, hold the camera up and hope for the best. 

All of my photos from the night can be found here

Next was the 5th Annual Paint Party:

Photo of me early in the night. Check out that "protective camera gear". 

The focus was on getting action shots of people having fun with the paint. Paint being thrown, paint hitting someone's face, paint in the air. Those were some of the things on my checklist of what to get for the night. I made a point to get right into the thick of it all too. At an event like that I believe you need to earn good photos and the only way to do that is by getting dirty. It helps you gain respect from the crowd. They'd much rather smile and scream for a photographer that's having fun and is just as dirty as they are. It puts you on the same level and makes you a human being. At the end of the day pictures are all about people and as a photographer I feel you need to connect with the people in front of the camera, even if it's in a small way. The photos turn out better. The way I protected my camera and flash is kind of funny, I think. I used two Zip Lock bags and some tape to cover the gear. One for the flash, one for the camera and lens. Couple thousand dollars of gear being protected by two zip lock bags... No worries. 

 At fast paced events like these, awesome photo moments are very easy to miss. The trick to capturing these moments is to constantly observe your surroundings and to try and put yourself in a position where you can get a good photo. This applies to all other events too. People love candid moments. I found a lot of the time if I saw something interesting happening I'd sprint to a good spot to capture it. I'm sure the security guard watching the entrance to the stage can back me up on that. Constantly moving and constantly observing. It may be tiring but that's all part of the game. 

All of the Paint Party photos can be found here.

Thanks for being amazing Humber. If you see yourself here feel free to use the photos however you'd like. Be sure to tag me so I can see! 

Daryn Does Humber

I've recently had the amazing opportunity of receiving the Photographer position for The Humber Students' Federation. My first assignment was to photograph a frosh event where Daryn Jones (from MTV Live, a.k.a. one of my favourite shows) hosted a show with former co-hosts Sheena Snively and Nicole Holness. Along with DJ Dopey, Cabbie from Cabbie on the Street, Colin Response and comedians Keith Pedro and Arthur Simeon. 

I watched MTV Live A LOT and went to the actual taping of the shows a bunch of times so I really enjoyed seeing them perform again. They've done events at Humber before but I never had the chance to go because I always had to work at my past job. 

I'm really excited to shoot more stuff for Humber. I'll be at the frosh events on September 4th-6th!

GALLERY TO THE PHOTOS CAN BE FOUND ON MY FACBEOOK PAGE! Like the page and tag your friends (Humber North and Lakeshore Campuses).

Enjoy!
 

Sushi Making For The Soul

Over the weekend a friend and I participated in a sushi making class at the Windup Bird Cafe near College and Bathurst in downtown Toronto. I'll start this off by saying I'm not a foodie at all. My typical meal consists of brown rice and grilled chicken. My only sushi experience before this is eating whatever the group I'm with orders from those all you can eat sushi buffets. Safe to say I don't know much about food, especially sushi. 

Long story short this experience was very eye opening and made me excited to start exploring sushi. We were given a brief history about sushi and how the different types we know today originated. That was followed by the DIY sushi rolling portion, which I wasn't very good at. I really recommend trying it out for yourself. If you're into cooking or food, you'll love it. If you're looking for somewhere to catch up with a friend or to take someone for a date, this is the place. 

Here's a link to the website Sushi Making For The Soul

BU9 Apparel

Super proud of the team for getting this shoot together. Couldn't be happier with the results. I've been wanting to shoot something like this for a long time. Very natural with the hair blowing and simple clothing. Our model, Taylor, absolutely killed it and I love the style and attitude the clothing by BU9 brought. If you like this style let me know! I love shooting this stuff!

Photography: Craig Bagol

Model: Taylor F. 

Styling: BU9 Apparel

New York Adventures and First Wedding

Thanks for stopping by and taking a look at this post. Hopefully you had a great long weekend! At the time I'm writing this it's currently the long weekend and I'm about to leave to celebrate a friend's birthday. #BBQturnup 

If you follow me on social media (links are on the right if you don't!) you'll know that I was in New York a few days ago. I was there for less than a week for family and I guess you can say "business". I shot a wedding! My first weeding, actually. Spoiler alert! It went really well. I'm going to write a little more about New York before getting into the wedding stuff. 

Let me start this off by saying I've been to Manhattan a few years ago and I was so impressed by that experience that it turned out to be one of my favourite cities in the world. (Nothing beats Toronto though). Our hotel was pretty much in the heart of Times Square. "Crowne Plaza" to be exact. Right beside the world's biggest Hersey store which definitely wasn't good. Let's just say binging was definitely not a good idea. 

Our first day was jam packed. Arrived at the airport (I think it was Laguardia) and took what felt like a 45 minute cab to the city. The cab ride was a eye opening experience. It's been a while since I've been to New York but it made me realized how crazy it is to drive there. Pretty much like driving downtown Toronto but people are a lot faster and aggressive. It was hard for me to imagine driving my manual transmission Kia Forte there. So we get to the hotel, go to a local deli to get some breakfast and then go see the play Wicked! That was AMAZING! If you don't know what Wicked is, it's a theatre play based around the Witch from Wizard of Oz. It was amazing! Did I mention it was amazing? The singing was amazing. I was blown away by how they can create so many different worlds on the stage just by using props, lights and music. The amount of creativity these people have is astounding. I definitely think plays and theatre and overlooked in todays society and in my generation. It's a shame! I want to watch more plays! Come with me!  After the play we go to this restaurant in Brooklyn called Ninja. THAT was cool too! I used to work at a restaurant in downtown Toronto so I'm always interested in unique food spots. The restaurant is made to look like a secret Ninja village. The servers jump out at you at unsuspecting times and they're all dressed up as ninjas! Really gimmic-y but it was nice! The food was alright too. I wasn't blown away. My favourite dish was a beef with mashed potatoes dish... the pinnacle of Japanese cuisine. 


The next day we went to the Statue of Liberty. MURICA! We went all the way to the top! It was really cool seeing how they made it. They basically made a small version and scaled it up again and again until it got to the size you see today. The whole thing is a wire frame with sheets of... I think copper on the outside. Really cool! (A lot of you might not know this but in high school I wanted to be an architect so I'm really intrigued by structures) 

After that was the wedding. Ohhhh man here we go! The wedding was amazing. For my first wedding I can honestly say I was super impressed with myself. Looking through the pictures I can confidently tell you that I captured great photos and that I can handle a wedding by myself. I'm incredibly picky and hard to impress so that's great coming from me. The wedding was for my cousins Ken and Karmela and I really couldn't thank them enough for giving me the opportunity. Yeah I'm family but weddings only happen once and I'm glad they had faith and trusted me. If you're reading this, thank you guys! Everything went so well! Click this text to see the photos for yourself. 

The whole trip was just amazing and I had a blast. Hopefully life or work brings me back soon. #billboardintimessquare 

My work will be up there one day.

Mind Over Matter

Had an awesome shoot this evening with a really talented team. Before this however, when I wasn't laying in bed, I was puking my guts out. I don't know why. This has never happened to me before. I was so close to rescheduling. The turning point was when I told myself "Don't be like everyone else. Lots of people are involved and you don't want to let them or yourself down." I want you to know I'm very dedicated and extremely passionate about what I do. It's going to take a lot to stop me from doing what I do. "I will beat you everyday of the week because I have passion" became a mantra flowing through my mind. Mind over matter. If you really want something you're going to get it.


Saira K

Shot with multi-talented, Saira, over the weekend. She's awesome at what she does. You should really check out her Facebook Page

This shoot was a bit different than normal. Normally I get a lot of time to scout the location before hand but this time I didn't really know much about the spot. Saira suggested to shoot at this location and I was down. As a photographer it's super important to be confident to work with whatever you're given. That's why knowing your gear and understand the fundamentals is so important to consistently getting good photos. (I'm going to release a video of what those are soon! Stay tuned!)

Below are the images from our shoot. Enjoy! 

GMProFitness Introduction

My buddies at GM Pro Fitness held a bootcamp class yesterday! I was participating and in front of the camera this time. It was awesome! I had a great workout and it was totally different than my regular exercises. This video is a recap of the fun and a little introduction to each of the trainers. They run their classes Tuesday and Thursday evenings for the rest of the summer. Their first two classes are free and it's a great opportunity at an incredibly affordable price.

Here's a message from the trainers and check out the video below!: 

If you currently live in the Brampton/Mississauga (or are willing to travel the distance), then come and get fit with us! We will be teaching various exercises at high intensity.

Forget having that “beach body”. Fitness isn’t all about physique and looking good. It’s also about FEELING great and getting your body used to functional movements.

*FIRST 2 SESSIONS ARE FREE - SO DON’T BE AFRAID TO COMMIT JUST YET*

Please email: GMPROFITNESS@gmail.com to secure your spot! We will only be taking in 15 bootcampers.
— GM PRO Fitness

How do you want to be perceived?

Do you value yourself and what you do? You're currently doing yourself a great disservice and losing potential clients. With the way social media is going, visuals are becoming more and more important. It all starts with the way you look.

It pains me to see people with businesses hiring someone with a "pretty big camera" or has "a friend that can do it". Would you go to the doctor that has been performing successful surgeries for years or Joe, who has a set of knives in the kitchen. Photography isn't about just simply pointing a camera and pressing the button. Just like how surgery isn't just about opening someone up. Don't take my word for it. Look at the photo to the right. Who do you think is a better model? She's obviously the same person. Hair and make up are done in both photos. She's beautiful but one photo shows it better than the other. 

To me, the company that gets my attention first usually gets my money. You believe people should buy your service or product. Show them they should with your visuals. Check out below what I did for Lamesa Filipino Kitchen. I also did their website. 

Color Me Rad 2014

Went to Color Me Rad on the weekend and had an amazing time! I edited together a video showing some of the craziness that went down. Hopefully it gives you an idea of how much fun it is! 

All footage and audio was captured with a GoPro. I used a remix of "Summer" by Calvin Harris, created by Paradoxium on Youtube, for the background music. 

Enjoy! Happy Canada Day!

Below are some pictures I took that can be found on my Instagram. Follow me! @craigbagol

Ty Lorenc

Did some work a couple days ago with model, Ty and my awesome make up and hairstylist friend, Noor. I love everything about this shoot and was I'm so happy with how it all turned out. This is the stuff I want to do. Imagine he was wearing clothing for some big brand like Armani or something like that lol


I'm especially happy that Ty really enjoyed the session. With his permission I'm posting what we wrote about the photo above.

Some say ‘a picture is worth a thousand words’ and personally, I feel as if this picture is the definition of that quote. To be where I have been, to have done the things I have done, and to experience the downfalls I have experienced, I am truly surprised that I had held on. This year has been more of a wake-up call for me to put my mind where it needs to be. I am proud to say that I have turned a new lease this year, and have truly started to focus on the important things in life. I am fully capable of doing what it takes to make a name for myself, and I know what my potential is. It’s hard dealing with the dark clouds, but sometimes you really just need to walk through the storm in order to make it to the rainbow. I personally feel as if this photo captures the beginning of many new and exciting adventures in life. No matter how rough the road Ahead is, I will walk to the end of the earth to succeed for myself and the ones that I love. I truly cannot express my gratitude for Craig Bagol for these empowering images of myself. It was honestly a GREAT start to the summer that changes my life forever. CHEERS TO NEW BEGINNINGS AND FRESH STARTS IN LIFE.

Know that you are NOT/NEVER your past. Everyone grows and experiences things over time and I hope that I can inspire people the way they have inspired me.
— Ty Lorenc

Things like THAT are the reason why I do photography.

The reason I choose to be a creative. Being able to create art is a super power. You can tell a story all within an image. You have the ability to change a person's life. To me that power is a gift, which is why I'm very passionate about what I do. Every opportunity is a chance to have a positive impact on someone's life. 

Here are the rest of the photos. I hope you enjoy and I hope I get the chance to show you what I can do.