Just like the story of the Cobbler's kids who have no shoes, I don't have many artful portraits of our kids. I know - I need to do better! I tried to remedy that situation a couple months ago during the "back to school" preparations.
I used to shoot a lot of weddings...too many actually. About 10 yrs ago I decided that I'd had enough of those stressful days and officially "retired" from doing them. That is until the daughter of my wife's close friend got married. Let's just say my wife can be very persuasive! :-) In the end I "came out of retirement" for this event and I am glad I did! Courtney was a beautiful bride to photograph and it was a really fun and casual day!
Actually, just trains this time. I was out and about and stopped by the train station here in town. I bet that view waiting for the train hasn't changed in many years! There was this one lone traveler waiting to be picked-up who graciously agreed to pose for my shot. Kitchener must be a destination spot because more people were getting off than getting on. The middle image is a happy arrival and not a sad departure.
Sometimes the photo gods smile on us...I was intrigued by some texture & tone contrast shots with a group of old birch trees (the first image) when suddenly a male Cardinal with full crest landed for all of about 5 seconds to add a nice splash of colour and then was gone. The other image is of my wife and her niece throwing stones off the dock...a storybook moment that was there briefly and then gone, (likewise I added some post-processing Orton effect to give it that storybook feel.)
One my favourite places is in a forest and my favourite forests are up in Muskoka (aka God's Country!) The first two images are from a weekend visit to my brother/sister-in-law's cottage on Muskoka Lake and the third is from that creek that runs in the forest behind our subdivision. It is the 2nd image I've taken that will hopefully be part of a 4 image=4 season collage of that location.
For those familiar with the Waterloo Region, you will have heard by now that the Seagram Barrel Pyramid is being taken down. Sadly, many of the barrels are in disrepair and the new Balsillie School of International Studies is building a walkway to CIGI directly in the path of where the pyramid currently sits. I just wanted to capture a few more images of the barrels before this landmark no longer exists. There is so much symmetry here to try and capture, not the least of which are the shutter shadows being cast at the same angle as the pyramid. The last image is of a skittish little Starling that seemed to think I was trespassing on his territory. I was drawn to his rough and tough, yet somewhat ornate appearance....these birds are a known to be hoodlums or vagabonds and I think this fellow really looks the part! :-)
There is a pond behind my house and this goose has been diligent through all the wind and rain to keep sitting on her eggs. This evening as I was barbecuing dinner, the sun broke through the clouds providing some terrific lighting, so I took the opportunity to try and capture her on the nest. I think she looks very elegant the way she is watching me all the while minding the eggs. In the first image I was struck by the placement of the "human nest" reflecting in the pond with the goose nest. All God's creatures need someplace to call home! :-) The dreamy/impressionistic look to them is called the "Orton Effect" named after landscape photographer Michael Orton.
My wife's favourite flowers are tulips and I wanted to create an image specifically for her. She has, after all, been tolerant of my photographic obsessions so it's the least I could do! :-) In the Trio image, I had just started thinking about different arrangements for the tulips when I was struck by the lighting emphasis on the front three in contrast to the rest of the bouquet. The inspiration for the other arrangement comes from da Vinci's "Last Supper" and his composition of the disciples across the table. So I imagined if Leonardo arranged flowers they probably looked like this! :-)
I don't often get time alone with 6 people in our family but last night everyone was out doing something...except me! A good time to scratch my photography itch. I love everything to do with photography - its history, its technology, its ability to preserve and transform the world around us. These are a few shots I took tonight of a few members of my "other" family I've collected over the years. The Yaschica Twin Reflex I've actually used...the last time I ran some film through it was in 2002. It was the poor man's version of the famous Mamiya C330. The Brownie Box was my grandmothers...I have some negatives from it of her as a young woman. The first two are traditionally exposed photos and then the third is an HDR version of my favourite.
It's been awhile since I've set up any still-life studio shots and I had a real itch to "shoot something" tonight. As I was looking around the house for something interesting, I noticed my wife's Easter Lily was in full bloom and seemed to be taunting me to try and photograph it. These are the three resulting images from this self imposed assignment. I can't decide which one I like best.
Have you ever been someplace and the magnitude of the view begged for some method of capturing your entire peripheral vision to even begin to do the scene justice? Well, photo-stitching is one method to try and solve that problem. These are a few of my favourite panoramas which were made by stitching together 3 or 4 different shots of the same scene where I set the camera in place and then pan left to right overlapping each of the images to be stitched together later.
I love water....lakes, oceans, rivers, creeks and streams. I am fortunate to live near the Grand River and the trail system that runs beside it. I was out on my bike this week with camera strapped to my side and stopped to explore this creek that runs behind our subdivision. Here are a couple shots done in HDR (high dynamic range) which is one of my favourite techniques - I should probably blog about that at some point.
There is something optimistic about the transition from winter to spring...the best is yet to come and the worst is behind you. Although it often seems like being in a state of limbo, it is nonetheless hopeful. These are just a few random images of the Waterloo area during this season.
I was always in awe of the National Geographic photographers with their fast 600 mm Nikon lenses and travel to exotic locales. I haven't spent much time doing wildlife photography...I would like to do more. I bet an African safari or time in the Galapagos Islands would certainly be inspiring! Here are a few shots of some less exotic but still fascinating creatures.
So I readily admit that the Golden Gate Bridge and San Francisco in general have been photographed so many times that it is probably impossible to find a new perspective or composition. Despite that being the case, San Fran is a great city and the Golden Gate is a compelling structure that just begs to be photographed over and over again...so here are my measly images to add to the pile.