Janek Lowe

July 2010: For several days, high winds and heavy rain ravaged the Peguis First Nation in Manitoba. Janek Lowe photographed Bill “Nature Boy” Cochrane Jr. knee deep in water in a driveway, examining one of the thousand or so leeches, some seven inches long, slithering at his bare feet. Two hundred and fifty Peguis residents were evacuated to a Winnipeg hotel three hours away, after their homes were flooded by water and sewage and likely some more leeches.
Late August 2010: The Province of Manitoba and the Government of Canada announced $29.7 million in assistance for Peguis and province-wide flood prevention.
Shortly after the funding announcement, Janek learned the very real impact that photojournalism can have. “Manitoba Premier Greg Selinger and I spoke about the floods in Peguis during some downtime at an event. I explained how the story nearly didn’t make it to the front page of the Winnipeg Free Press.
“When I was filing my photos from Peguis through an excruciatingly sluggish Internet connection, I was on the phone with the photo editors. They told me the story was not expected to get much real estate in the paper. Then my first photos arrived. It was the lead story the next day.
“The premier told me that seeing the front page that morning helped the decision-makers understand the need for significant assistance.”

Janek Lowe is a Toronto-based photojournalist and documentary producer for both media and corporate clients. He is a graduate of the Photojournalism program at Loyalist College.
Prior to studying photojournalism, Janek worked extensively in film and TV as a story executive with award-winning producers and financiers, such as Devine Entertainment and Telefilm Canada. But he wanted out of his desk chair and into the field.
His work as a photojournalist has since taken him across Canada and overseas, including staff positions at the Waterloo Region Record and Winnipeg Free Press where he covered natural disasters to royal tours.
He is now developing and producing several projects, including an 18-part multimedia series that chronicles how PhotoSensitive’s band of Canadian photojournalists impacted social change and global issues over nearly a quarter of a century. Janek is a member of the Canadian Society of Cinematographers.