The Presenters

The 2017 Summit Presenters are:

Mike Grandmaison – Summit Keynote Presenter

Mike Grandmaison is internationally recognized as a leading landscape photographer

Mike Grandmaison 

Mike Grandmaison – Summit Keynote Presenter

Mike Grandmaison is an acclaimed Canadian photographer and presenter based in Winnipeg, Manitoba.  He is passionate about creating exquisite images that reflect the beauty of his beloved country, Canada.  He graduated for Laurentian University with an Honours degree in Biology in 1976.  Following a 20-year career with the Canadian Forest Service in Edmonton and Winnipeg, Mike launched a new career as a full-time professional photographer in 1996.

Mike’s passion for photography, particularly his ability to capture the intimate details of the natural world, has won him numerous commissions from clients across Canada, the USA and Europe.  He photographs for a broad range of corporate and editorial clients in fields ranging from agriculture to architecture and from forest to factory.  His academic knowledge and working experience in the natural sciences, coupled with his passion for photography, technical skills and an artist’s eye, make him a sought after photographer for outdoor work.  Mike’s on-location assignment photography spans Canada’s Geography.  An uncompromising quality of craftsmanship, together with a signature style, distinguish Mike in this competitive field.

Regarded as one of this country’s fine nature photographers, Mike’s award winning imagery has been featured in countless publications around the world.  He manages a full service stock agency in Canada which houses a curated collection of thousands of premium quality photos, specializing in images of the natural world, agriculture, travel and Canadiana.  Select clients include National Geographic, Geo, CanadianGeographic, Canadian Wildlife, Microsoft, Ford, Toyota, Gartner Steel and Glass, Smith Carter Architects, LM Architects, Canadian Affair, Wyman Publishing, Browntrout Publishers and Inner Reflections to name a few.  Eight Canada Post stamps projects now feature his photography.

Mike’s images are represented in a fine collection of coffee table books, fourteen to date, and include ‘Canada’, ‘Manitoba:  Land of the Unexpected’, ‘Mike Grandmaison’s Ontario’, ‘Beautiful Alberta’, ‘Mike Grandmaison’s Prairie and Beyond’, The Canadian Rockies’, ‘Georgian Bay’ and ‘Muskoka’.  He has been a regular contributor to ‘Outdoor Photography Canada Magazine since it’s inception some 10 years ago in which he writes and illustrates a feature called ‘Discovering Canada’.  Mike has taught photography for many years, presenting countless seminars and leading many nature-focused workshops to various organizations across Canada including at the Rocky Mountain Photographic Workshops in 2014, the Niagara School of Imaging in St. Catherines, Ontario in 2010 and 2011 and ‘Focus On The Rockies’ for the Fairmont Jasper Park Lodge in Jasper, Alberta in 2007 and 2008.

Mike’s nature photographs are represented in Winnipeg by Grolle Fine Art.  His latest exhibition ‘Mike Grandmaison’s Prairie and Beyond’, a collection of 38 large scale photographs based on the book of the same name, traveled throughout Manitoba from September 2012 to December 2014.

Mike is a member of the Professional Photographers of Canada (PPOC) since 1996 in which he is accredited in Nature and Stock Photograph.  He is a lifetime member and a past president of the National Association for Photographic Art (now CAPA) for which he recieved both a CAPA Certificate of Photographic Achievement in 2012 and a CAPA Honorary Fellowship in 2011.  Mike was awarded second prize in the Northern Lights 2007 Awards Canada competition for excellence in Travel Journalism and recieved a Fuji Masterpiece Award for Commercial Photography in 2002.  He was selected as a Highly Honored Winner in Nature’s Best International Photography Competition for the year’s 2001, 2002, 2003, and 2004.  He was also selected as the featured artist in Friesen’s 2011 corporate calendar, a premium calendar distributed worldwide.

You may browse more of Mike’s imagery at the following websites at: and

Derek Crowe – Presenter

Derek Crowe in Greenland

Derek Crowe – Summit Presenter, Adventure Photographer/Polar Explorer

Frozen: One man’s photographic journey through the coldest places on earth

 In the summer of 2009 photographer Derek Crowe joined a three-man team on an expedition to vertically cross the Greenland ice cap by snow-kite.  Only a stroke of luck saved the team from completely running out of food and joining the ranks of failed polar explorers.   

 The expedition was officially recognized by the Guinness Book of World Records:

 Back home in Yukon, Derek began to look for adventure in his own backyard.  The 1000-mile Yukon Quest International Sled Dog Race weaves together a network of historic overland, trapping and postal trails from Whitehorse to Fairbanks, Alaska.  Much in the same way the invention of snow kites precipitated his vertical crossing of Greenland, the advent of the modern snow bike allowed Derek to follow in the tracks of Yukon’s first cyclists.  Despite starting in temperatures of -45c, Derek completed the 700 kilometer journey to Dawson, becoming the first Yukoner in over 100 years to travel the entire length of the Dawson Overland Trail in winter by bicycle. 

A chance meeting with Yukon Quest legend and sled dog rights advocate Frank Turner led to Derek’s most recent adventure – a 200 km trip by dog sled from Aklavik, NWT to Herschel Island, Yukon.  The remote Yukon Arctic coast is a living history animated with stories of skeletons and shipwrecks, where the pressures of climate change and resource development starkly expose a changing Arctic, a place few people get to see.

Derek will share how a successful expedition is the result of many hours of research and planning. Equipment is pared to the minimum and selected to be as versatile as possible, including camera gear. He will show how to incorporate your camera with your clothing system, how to keep batteries warm and how to keep taking great pictures regardless of the weather conditions.

Larry Hilderman – Presenter

Larry Hilderman, Panasonic Professional Photographer

Larry Hilderman, Panasonic Professional 

Larry Hilderman – Summit Presenter and Panasonic Professional
Larry Hilderman has worked in the photo industry for 35 years. Starting in a bathroom darkroom in his parent’s basement and later progressing to a full colour lab in his house, producing the perfect print has been a passion. His employment  is the technical side of photography and has been with a photo lab manufacturer for the last 20 years. With extensive knowledge and experience in photo processing he has embraced the transition to digital imaging. The discovery of processing digital files has been very rewarding, resulting in excellent images.
With a love of travel and mountain photography, Larry escaped from his native Saskatchewan to be closer to the Rockies. Decades of hiking and travel have produced many images that have produced fine art prints. Clients have been primarily professional corporations. Specializing in non traditional media like acrylic and metal, images have “pop” without appearing over processed.
Larry has presented to major Western Canadian photofinishers and enjoys sharing his knowledge with others. To view some of Larry’s images please visit:

Robert Berdan – Presenter


Robert Berdan

Professional Nature Photographer and Photography Educator

Robert is scientist, teacher, professional instructor, presenter and nature photographer living in Calgary, Alberta for the past 20 years. Robert’s interest in nature led him first into a career in cell biology and neuroscience.  In 1996, Robert started his business “Science & Art Multimedia” in Calgary and offers a variety of services including outdoor photography, Photoshop training and web development.  Robert has been teaching photography and Photoshop at privately and at local colleges for over 20 years.  Robert’s photos have been published by National Geographic, Canadian Geographic, Outdoor photography Canada, Photo Life and in numerous other publications, books and museums. His photography passion includes landscapes, wildlife, macro, aurora and 360 virtual reality photography.  His photographs have won International awards including the Banff Mountain photography contest several times.  Robert also operates three web sites:


Robert’s website features numerous photography and Photoshop articles by himself and many other distinguished photographers.  His photographs with Nikon and Canon cameras and uses both PC and Mac computers to process his images.

Robert will deliver a two part presentation on editing in photoshop based of the courses he developed for the Southern Institute of Alberta Photography Program.

Roy Ramsay – Presenter

Roy Ramsay, Editor/Publisher, "Outdoor Photography Canada"

Roy Ramsay

Editor in Chief, Outdoor Photography Canada Magazine and Professional Presenter

Roy presented at the 2016 Summit, and we’re pleased that he is coming back again to be a presenter at the 2017 Summit.  How could we not have the leading Canadian outdoor photography journalist back to present at The Summit?

Roy has been a photographer for the past 28 years.  In 1998, Ramsay began a journey in magazine design as a junior designer.  Within two years he became Art Director of an international magazine and worked in that capacity for eight years.

With an extensive knowledge of photography, design and magazine publishing, Ramsay was ready to embark on his life-long dream.  In 2007, he launched the first issue of Outdoor Photography Canada magazine, OPC, which aims to instruct the reader through entertaining, interesting and informative articles and imagery, covering all aspects of outdoor photography.  OPC magazine is now in its ninth year and is available throughout North America on newsstands and distributed via subscriptions world-wide.  

** ILPA editor’s note:  When you register for the 2017 Summit you will also receive an included subscription to OPC magazine **

Roy is currently Editor-in-Chief, “Photographer’s Lifestyle” columnist, and Publisher of OPC and oversees the visual and editorial voice of the magazine as well as its overall business development.  He has not lost sight of where it all started, and continues with his photography by shooting for Outdoor Photography Canada, stock photography, and runs workshops to teach others how to improve their photographic skills.

Ramsay is based in Bampton, ON and he will be delivering his presentation on Saturday Jan. 14, 2017.

Steve Dotto – Presenter

Leading social media/YouTube educator 

Steve Dotto - Social Media Educator

Steve Dotto – Social Media Educator

Dotto Tech – The Social Media Education Engine

Steve Dotto is a leading social media educator and produces the very popular YouTube Channel “Dotto Tech” and the previously the long running network TV show by the same name.  

   At the request of the ILPA, Steve will be delivering his landscape photography specific program to help us understand how to use social media effectively.  I can think of no other person to deliver on this very complex subject of sharing to the masses.  Steve uses a multimedia approach to ensure that his complete message is communicated effectively.  If you’re at all interested in social media then this is a presentation that you most definitely won’t want to miss.  Steve is a communications and education master.

Brian Merry 

Summit founder, organizer and presenter

Brian In Lake O'Hara

Brian Merry © Kevin Annala Photography

Founder and president of the International Landscape Photographers’ Association, and the ILPA Landscape Photography Summit founder, organizer and presenter.

Brian started practicing photography in the late 1980s and has been a professional photographer since 1997.  He moved to Banff in 1996 from Nova Scotia after finishing a Fish and Wildlife Technician Diploma from Sir Sandford Fleming College in Ontario in 1992 and a Bachelor of Science with honours in Biology degree from Acadia University in 1996.  Brian has worked predominantly as a photographer and/or a wildlife biologist since the early 1990s.  He presently splits his professional time as a professional photographer and working occasionally for Banff National Park.  During the recent 2015 summer field season he worked as a wildlife biologist for Banff National Park.

Brian has been trained professionally as an adult educator and has instructed biology labs at Acadia University and held an Associate Instructor position at Lakeland College in Vermillion, Alberta for 5 years.  He’s also professionally accredited by the Professional Photographers of Canada.

Growing out of last year’s Summit, Brian started the International Landscape Photographers’ Association which is now the parent and organizing body for the Summit.  Brian, along with the ILPA Board of Advisors, conceive, foster, and develop the different, and active branches of ILPA.  If you’re into Landscape photography then you should probably become a member of ILPA.  ILPA members receive an $80 refund on their 2017 Summit registration.  That is just one of the many benefits of becoming a member of ILPA.

Brian has been teaching landscape photography workshops and leading tours based in the Canadian Rockies since 2010.  He leads photography workshops and tours to destinations across the country and around the world including Banff, Cape Breton Island and to the cultural heart of Japan during the usual peak of the Cherry Blossoms in the Japanese Spring.  For more details about Brian, his photography, and his landscape and wildlife photography workshops and tours please visit Brian’s website.



2016 Discussion Panel Members

The discussion panel topic is of special interest right across the country:  

“How far would you go to get the shot?  How far is too far?”

The Summit presenters listed above will be sitting on the discussion panel to contribute to the conversation around this important question.  Their decades of balanced experience in the industry will help to represent the photography industry nicely when answering the panel discussion question.  However, an all professional photography panel could potentially come to a biased conclusion.

To bring balance to the conversation on the panel we’re fortunate to have members from other important interest groups.  These panel members also bring decades of relevant experience to table.  These individuals are:


Joe Desjardins – discussion panel member

Joe Desjardins,

Joe Desjardins,

An award winning, published and nationally accredited photographer, Joe Desjardins’ images have garnered national accreditations in equine, landscape, nature, wildlife and other disciplines of photography through the Professional Photographers of Canada (PPOC).

Joe has been a wildlife and nature photographer for nearly three decades. His photographic career began while working for a photography studio in Northern Ontario, Canada. Growing up in Northern Ontario afforded him the opportunity to explore nature, making wildlife and nature photography a natural fit.

Joe works as a photographer out of the Calgary, AB region with his main areas of focus being environmental portraiture, equine, wildlife and nature photography.  Joe loves the enthusiasm that the students bring to the classroom both indoors and out.

For upcoming classes and to view more of his work, check out the following links:

Instagram –

Twitter – @joedesjardins

Kevin Gedling – discussion panel member


Kevin Gedling, Professional Interpretive Guide 
Kevin has been a professional interpretive guide in the Canadian Rockies since 2002 guiding ice walks on the Columbia Icefields, snowshoeing trips, day hikes and sightseeing tours in Banff, Kootenay, Yoho and Jasper National Parks.  He also guides throughout BC and the Northwest Territories.  Kevin’s love for nature based exploration trips has led him to incorporate photography into his unique and award winning communications style.  He presently lives in, and works for, Jasper National Park on the external relations team.  Kevin can also be found hitting the trails in amongst the amazing landscapes he calls home at every available opportunity.  
Kevin is a certified Heritage Interpreter since 2012 through the Interpretive Guides Association.  He is also certified with the Canadian Tourism Human Resource Commission as a Certified Interpretive Planner.  Kevin interpretation skill has earned him the 2012 Gold Award from Interpretation Canada.  
Kevin will be joining the panel to discuss the topic from a professional nature interpreter’s prespective.

 Lori Homstol – discussion panel member

Lori Homstol

Lori Homstol, Bear Researcher

– with her Kerelian Bear Dog, Sitka
Lori is a terrestrial wildlife biologist and human-bear conflict specialist.  She has worked with small and large mammals, identifying their tracks in crossing structures over and under the Trans Canada highway in Banff, backtracking their movements around Canmore and Kananaskis, capturing, radio-collaring and monitoring black and grizzly bears in BC, Yukon, Alberta, and Montana as well as Asiatic black bears in Japan and Andean bears in the cloud forests of Ecuador.  In 2011, Lori completed her master’s degree investigating methods to increase bear wariness toward humans and ways to deter bears from difficult to secure human attractants, in Whistler, BC.  In 2014, she co-founded the Canadian branch of the Wind River Bear Institute, a company that pioneered the use of Karelian Bear Dogs to help mitigate human-bear conflict.  

Other discussion panel Members Included:

Roy Ramsay

Ethan Meleg

A human/wildlife conflict representative from Parks Canada