Michael Venables grew up in Ottawa where he graduated in Mechanical Engineering from Carleton University. Since then he has lived in Montreal and Ottawa where he was first an aerospace design engineer and then an aerospace marketing and sales manager. Mike is an active pilot.

His first camera as a child was a Kodak Brownie Hawkeye before he acquired a second-hand Zeiss Ikon Contessa. His first Single Lens Reflex camera was a Minolta SRT-101 before moving up to the pro-grade Minolta cameras. Since switching to digital, Mike uses Canon cameras exclusively.

Mike learned darkroom technique in his high school photo club. He participated in a series of workshops in Montreal led by accomplished theoretical and practical instructors over a two year period. He maintained a black and white darkroom for a number of years until its closure was forced by a move.