Saturday, December 29, 2007

Article in the Saskatoon Star Phoenix for Saturday Dec. 29/07

Each day of calendar an inspiration

Darlene Polachic, The StarPhoenix

Published: Saturday, December 29, 2007

If someone had told Lisa Braun when she was 15 that she would one day be back living in her hometown of Warman producing inspirational calendars, she would have laughed in scorn.

"My life was pretty messed up back then and I couldn't get away from Warman fast enough. I said I would never come back. But, never say never. God has a sense of humour."

Six years ago, Braun and her husband Roger and their children moved back to Warman, where Braun cares for her family and passionately pursues her gift for photography.

"It's not something I had training for," she says. "I know it is a gift from God. It isn't that I go out looking for pictures, or that I wait for hours for something to happen. God just seems to put me in the right place at the right time."

One example of that is an amazing photograph of a resting, snow-covered deer. "Roger and I were driving to the lake, when suddenly Roger stopped and said, 'Get out your camera.' I hadn't even noticed it, but there was a deer in the ditch with its back all covered with snow. It lay there the whole time I snapped away."

"Another time, we were going to Emma Lake for our anniversary. It was a beautiful fall day, and we were listening to praise and worship music as we drove, feeling like we were travelling with the angels. I said, 'It would be so cool, God, to see a bear right now.' We turned a corner and there was a black bear in the ditch eating berries."

Braun has loved photography since she was a child, but it was only when her youngest daughter started kindergarten that she began working at it seriously. A photographer friend who was booked to shoot a wedding and couldn't, asked if Lisa was interested in doing it. She's been doing wedding photography ever since.

"I don't have a studio," she says. "God's creation is my studio and interestingly enough, I have never yet had a wedding session rained out."

Lisa began taking photographs to Page One Printing in Saskatoon to have them made into cards which she offered for sale on the Thickwood Hills Studio Trail, a self-drive tour of artisan locations. "Page One asked if they could use some of my pictures for a Saskatchewan calendar they were producing. They ended up using six in the 2007 calendar which they sold to businesses for $2 a piece. The business could put their name and advertising information on the bottom and hand out the calendars to customers.

"I asked if I could sell the calendars, too. In three days, I sold 3,000 to about 14 businesses. I said, 'God, can it be this easy?'"

That gave Braun the idea to produce calendars of her own. She had Page One make 10,000 copies of a 2008 calendar containing 12 of her own prairie-themed photographs. In no time, she had sold every one. She decided to do a second calendar for 2008, this one an inspirational calendar with Bible verses superimposed on the photographs.

"This," she says, "is my heart. My heart is for God who gave me the gift. I love to capture what God created and bless others with it. I love putting scripture to photos."

It all happens very naturally. "When I'm taking a picture, certain words from a verse will pop into my mind. I'll already know when I'm setting up the photo exactly what verse I will use and where it will go. It is definitely God-inspired."

One such photo is of a red barn taken on a very frosty day. "I gave the duplicate prints to the son of the woman who used to live on the farm when I was a child. He picked one, and said, 'Mom would love to have a verse on it from your Bible.' I wondered if there was a verse in the Bible that mentions frost, so I looked in the concordance. Sure enough, Job 37:10 says: 'By the breath of God, frost is given.' Reading that gave me chills. I could just visualize God breathing on the earth, covering everything with hoar frost. I can never see frost again the same way."

Braun's calendars have become a popular item for fundraising. Churches, clubs, and schools buy them for $2 each (minimum of 100), imprint their own logo on the bottom, and sell them for whatever markup they want. Generally, Braun says, the calendars sell for $10 a piece.

"Osler Mission Chapel is building a new church and bought 500 to sell. Saskatoon Christian School also sells my calendars as a fundraiser."

Braun's 2008 calendars are available from her website: or by email:

Polachic is a freelance writer.

"WOW! I'm not used to this. This lady had given me a call, stating that she had seen my Inspirational calendar and thought it would make a good story. So, she came over and interviewed me. :-) It was fun! She was a wonderful lady and I enjoyed sharing with her. But there was a couple of things in this article that I felt I needed to clarify:

I never ever would have dreamed that someday my photographs would have been in a calendar, let alone my own calendar with my own photographs. I don't know if I would've 'laughed in scorn' as was written in the article but I definitely wouldn't have believed it at that point. I'm just continually amazed at what God has done in my life and around me. God is so good!

Even though I left home at age 15, I did remain in school in Warman until I graduated in 1987. My High School years were much better than my Junior High years although overall my school years weren't the worst. I had lots of friends and great teachers. I had a difficult upbringing but I didn't have any major issues with the town itself.

The Inspirational Calendar was the very first calendar I ever wanted to create because that was my passion. I love putting scripture to photos. About 15,000 calendars had been printed and OVER 10,000 calendars have been sold to date. Three different calendars were printed: Inspirational 2008, Prairie Scenes 2008 - both of these are filled with my photographs - and then a 2008 SK Scenes calendar which is Page One Printing's version with a variety of SK photographers including myself. So with all 3 of these calendars, about 15,000 or more had been printed originally. There are still more available to be sold. Scott's Parable Christian Store in Saskatoon has also been selling the Inspirational Calendar as well and will still have them available in the New Year.

Thanks for reading and God bless you all!

Tuesday, April 3, 2007

2008 Scenes of Saskatchewan Calendar

Here it is! The 2008 Scenes of Saskatchewan calendar. This calendar features incredible photographs of our beautiful province. The photos are taken by gifted photographers such as: Dennis Chamberlain, Wayne Shiels, Lisa Braun, Jodi Boyd, and Jesse Johnstone. The front page photo is taken by Dennis Chamberlain. The SK communities in which these photographs were taken in include: Warman, Minnowaka Lake, Borden, Sceptre, Fisher Creek, Moosomin, Waskesui National Park and Dalmeny.
The following photographs are ones that I have featured in the calendar.

photo taken near Warman/Martensville

sample of the calendar date pages

photo taken near Warman

photo taken in Waskesui National Park

above photo taken on Waskesui Lake Golf Course

both of these photos were taken by Wayne Shiels - above photo is taken at Borden, SK and the photo below is taken in Saskatoon, SK

If you would like to order any of these calendars, please contact me at

God bless you!

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Memorial Lake Photos Featured

Some of my photos being published began with the Spirit of the Northern Lakes magazine. Spending much of our time up there, opened doors to begin using my photos in ways to enhance the community. In both of these issues, my photo was chosen for the front page - both featuring Memorial Lake, SK.

This photo of the Memorial Lake beach was entered into a Regional Park photo contest and was chosen 1st place out of 52 photographs. It was used on the 2007 issue of the Regional Parks Guide. The Golf Course photo was also used for the Memorial Lake Regional Park ad featured in this Regional Parks Guide of 2007.

This ad was put together by the Regional Park with my photos featuring the Shell Lake Community with the Memorial Lake Golf Course and Lake. It was used in the 2006 & 2007 Saskatchewan Northern Tourism Guide. The Regional Park has also used a number of my photos in displays at the Sports & Leisure Shows in different cities in Canada and the United States. They have used a number of my photos on their website as well

This is the ad that was featured in the 2006 Regional Parks Guide showing two of my photos of the Memorial Lake Golf Course.
Four of my photos were also used for the Memorial Lake Regional Park brochure for 2007.
I want to thank Memorial Lake Regional Park, the community of Shell Lake and the editor of the Spirit of the Northern Lakes magazine for giving me these wonderful opportunities to share my photos in these ways. It's been wonderful!! Thank You! God bless you all!

Monday, March 19, 2007

2008 Prairie Scenes of Saskatchewan Calendar

cover page

sample of the July date page

Well, here's project #2 - a Saskatchewan Scenic Calendar featuring 13 of mine (and God's) photos. :-) Another project I've dreamed of doing and now it's come true. Below, are featured samples of all the calendar photographs. Please keep in mind that the quality of the printed calendar will be excellent and the colorings in these scanned photographs are done at a lower resolution as samples only.

To place an order for these calendars, please contact me at Orders must be in by May 25/2007.

Prices for Company Calendars with a minimum order of 100 are:

$2.00/ea. with black imprint of your business information and logo

$2.50/ea. with color imprint of your business information and logo

For individual calendar orders, please contact me at the above email address.

January photo taken near Iroquois Lake, SK

February photo taken at Shell Lake, SK

March photo taken of Gabriel Dumont Bridge near Rosthern, SK

April photo taken at Dalmeny, SK

May photo taken of the lake in Warman, SK

June photo taken of the beach at Memorial Lake, SK

July photo taken on Emma Lake, SK

August photo - 18th Hole on Waskesiu Golf Course, Waskesiu Lake, SK

September photo taken near Blaine Lake, SK

October photo taken near Delisle, SK

November photo of Veteran's Memorial near Shell Lake, SK

December photo taken in Marcelin, SK

Monday, March 12, 2007

Shell Lake Brochure

It's hot off the press!! The brand new Shell Lake brochure!
([pictured above are the front and back flaps of the brochure)
I was blessed with the wonderful opportunity to take part in creating a new Shell Lake brochure featuring everything this wonderful community in Saskatchewan has to offer. Numerous photos of mine (and God's) :-) photos were used in this brochure. I want to thank the Shell Lake Chamber of Commerce for inviting me to take part in this wonderful project. I also want to thank Page One Printing in Saskatoon, SK for doing a superb job in creating this masterpiece. It was fun to do!!

Here's what the inside pages look like:

above are the 2 pages just inside the front cover

and these two are the very inside four flaps

If you'd like any brochures made, contact me and we'll see what I can create for you as well.

Friday, March 9, 2007

2008 Scripture Calendar

Cover photo taken at Christopher Lake, SK

view of the month of August setup

Well, it's happened! My dream has come true! God has given me the desire of my heart and has blessed me with an opportunity to create a Scripture calendar. The photos that are featured in this calendar are taken in British Columbia, Canada and Saskatchewan, Canada. The following photographs are the ones featured in the 2008 Scripture Calendar. Please note that the print size of the scripture on each page will be smaller and will be visible in the left or right corners of the calendar pages. I have already begun taking orders for these calendars. Orders are being taken until May 25, 2007. You can contact me at
Pricing for business/company orders - a minimum of 100 calendars:
$2.00/calendar with Black & White business information printed on bottom of the cover
$2.50/calendar with Color business information printed on bottom of the cover
Individual calendars are also available - please contact me for those prices.
January photo taken at Francois Lake, BC

February photo taken near Vancouver, BC

March photo taken at Fort St. James, BC

April photo taken near Warman, SK

May photo taken near Petrofka Bridge, SK

June photo taken near Hague, SK
July photo taken at Christopher Lake, SK
August photo taken of Memorial Lake, SK
September photo taken at Memorial Lake, SK

October photo taken near Saskatoon, SK

November photo of Memorial Hill near Shell Lake, SK

December photo taken at Warman, SK

2007 Calendar

For 2007, I had the unique opportunity to have 6 of my photos featured in a 2007 Saskatchewan Scenic Calendar with 4 other photographers. The printing company that I deal with asked if I would be willing to take part in this calendar project. I was very excited!! It's always been my dream to have my photographs in calendars. They gave me permission to sell this calendar to companies and in just 3 days, I sold over 3000 calendars!! WOW! I wasn't expecting that and I don't think they were either. Now that I've had a taste, sometime I'd like to try making calendars with just my own (and God's, of course) photographs in the calendar. Maybe this will even happen for next year! :-)

So, here is the 2007 calendar featuring 6 of my photos. The cover photo above is not my photograph, it is a picture of the Northern Lights taken by Dennis Chamberlain from Candle Lake area. But the following photos are the ones that are featured in the calendar.

this photo for February was taken by Warman, SK

this photo for March was taken near Martins Lake, SK

this photo for June was taken near Shellbrook, SK

this photo for July was taken at Christopher Lake, SK

this photo for August was taken on the Shell River which winds through Memorial Lake Golf Course at Shell Lake, SK

this photo for October was taken on Emma Lake, SK