Thursday, June 30, 2011

Happy Canada Day!!!

This flower pot with a Canadian Flag amongst the flowers is a little creation of my wife's. It sits on our front veranda, and sends a message of "Proud to be Canadian" and "Happy Canada Day" to all! We are so fortunate to live in this country, and while it is not perfect, it seems that the rest of the world is breaking down the "doors" to live here. Here's to this country, and its wonderful people....Cheers!!!

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Just a Few More Days...

In just a few more days, we will be celebrating Canada Day, and Dominion Day in Newfoundland. This posting tonight is my little tip of the hat to all of the Canadian Do It Yourselfers out there. The last 3 drawers for the bottom cupboards are in the photo on the left, and the drawer fronts are in the making, in the one on the right. This project has had more than its fair share of skinned knuckles, cut fingers, copious quantities of coffee and coke, and a few beers as well along the way. The end is near, and while it has had its trials and frustrations, I have enjoyed the journey. There were many lessons along the way, and may I say that much was learned. Now...to build and assemble the Lazy Susan doors.....

P.S. I bought fresh batteries today for my Maxxum 9 film camera at Henry's. Whooo hooo! Can't wait to shoot and shoot and drain them dry eh....I have a fridge full of black and white film that is still good.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Music and a Coffee to Start the Day....

Today, just as I was about to make another attack on the kitchen cupboard doors, I decided that I'd take a shot of my "work in progress"... As usual, my old Panasonic portable radio sits amongst the mess on a bench near by and is tuned to CBC Classical Music Station. This same radio used to accompany me on literally hundreds of evenings in the darkroom while I printed for hours and hours into the wee hours of the morning. Now, it performs the same task for me, covered as it is in layers of sawdust and cobwebs. When I took these shots, I had a good chuckle at myself, as it made me remember the many times that I used to watch the pristine environment of the New Yankee Workshop and Norm Abram perform his many wonders. Well, my shop is anything but pristine while I am at work. But then, I'm no Norm Abram, and do not have any TV crew following my every move. Yup! Just three more drawers and fronts to go, and after I lay the new flooring down, my wife will have a new kitchen. It has been a real learning experience, and if I had known before I started what I know now.........

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

After the Rain.....

This little image is the result of downloading some freeware photo editing software that I stumbled upon yesterday, while looking for something else. It had rained for a while yesterday, and afterward, I decided to photograph the roses growing by our backyard fence. While digital is wonderful, lately I have returned to shooting film a little. It is such a pleasure to use my film cameras again, where a 100mm lens is 100mm, and not 150mm. When I look at the detail and tones of a medium format black & white print, it makes me long to hold up a 16 x 20 black and white portrait in the darkroom again. You feel like you actually made something yourself, from start to finish. Then when you mount and frame it under glass, it gives a feeling of total satisfaction. Hopefully before too many more months pass, I will be able to process my black and white negatives again, and print them in a new darkroom..... From what I have been reading lately, there are quite a few photographers who are making a return to the darkroom again.....Anyway, hope you enjoy this little image.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Blue Hydrant.....

The mixture of more pastel hues playing off of the more vibrant and contrasty green and white of this scene caught my eye. It was taken in between cars and people passing by on the street, yet it makes for a rather quiet little scene. Hope you enjoy it also.

Mystery Plant.....

This plant caught my eye as it was back lit by the sun, which made it appear to jump out at you. Just what this plant is, is a mystery to me. I tried to do a little research on Google, but could not come up with anything. So, if anyone has the name for this plant, feel free to clue me in. I could have excluded the light pole behind it, but felt it would be a good item to give it scale and dimension. For those who would find it interesting, both this shot and the Passion Flower below, were shot with the same lens....my Minolta 75 ~ 300 mm AF zoom, on my Maxxum 7D camera, which is a nice range of photos from one lens. Hope you enjoy.

P.S. Mystery solved! My wife did some research today and came up with the name for this plant. It is a Colocasia Odora plant, aka. Upright Elephant Ears plant. It is a tropical plant that obviously does quite well in this area also.

Passion Flower.....

After finishing the pantry yesterday, I figured it was time to play for a day. We took a jaunt down to Amherstburg again, and enjoyed the sights and sounds along the river at the Royal Naval Yard Park. There is a section of it there dedicated to Hosta plants, and I had no idea there were so many varieties of these plants. Just as we were leaving, my wife came across this lovely blossom. Neither of us knew just what it was, but I enjoyed taking a few shots of it. Since our neighbor Terri is an authority on all green things that grow, I decided to ask her over to see if she could identify it for us. She names plants like "that white thing that grows beside the garbage pail" etc.. so I figured that she knew about as much as we did. Sure enough, as soon as she saw it, she said it was a "Passion Flower". So I did a Google search, and sure enough, I came across this very blossom, and it said that it was a "Passion Flower to Kindle Sleep"..... O.K. then! Sounds great to me! That mystery was solved, and there is another very large broad leafed plant that I have no idea what it is, so I will rely on someone else, anyone else, to tell me what it is. I'll post it next. Hope you enjoy a little passion today.....

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Rose in the Rain

This rose was shot on Kodak 400 CN Black & White film. It also had been in my old camera about 4 years, and I was amazed at how much image I was able to record after all that time. The roll had only been about half used, and I decided to finish it off with a few rose shots from my back yard before taking it to be processed. While it is a black and white film, it can be processed in the regular C 41 chemicals used to process regular colour negatives. My old friend Dent Peever processed hundreds of rolls of this film for me at his shop in North Bay, when I used to shoot weddings and portraits. To me, this was the acid test for this film. That it could still record an image after sitting in a camera all of these years was amazing to me. I still have quite a few rolls of this film in a refrigerator, and will not hesitate to use it in the future. The rose was one that I planted beside my fence in the back yard in memory of my Mother. She used to have a front yard full of rose beds in Corner Brook. It fell to me to wrap them in burlap (old potato bags) every fall before the snow started to fly, for protection from the elements. It brings back many pleasant memories of my boyhood, and I hope you enjoy this little blossom as well.....

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Grain and More Grain....

Today, I decided that it was about time that I made some sort of effort to post something on this badly neglected blog of mine. I dug out my old Minolta XE7 film camera, and loaded a roll of Portra 400NC that had been sitting in the old camera bag for about 4 or 5 years. I thought that it should be very interesting to see if any sort of image at all would record on this emulsion after not being refrigerated for so long. So, I loaded up, and put on my old macro lens, and set about shooting the 36 frames, all the while thinking to myself that I had probably gone over the edge this time. But, in this digital age, who knows for sure eh? Tonight I took the roll up to Wallmart and the young fellow gave me some funny looks when I told him that the film was about 5 years old, and not to expect a whole lot. If any kind of image recorded at all, that would be a bonus for sure. Well, I did get some very faint images, and were they GRAINY or what! So when I loaded the CD into the computer and went through the photos, if they could be called that, I decided on this one to work on a little. What to do with grain, lots of grain....I figured that there was no way to make a sharp image out of this mess, so I decided to texture the living Hell out of it. This is what I finally ended up with. Go ahead and laugh if you must, but I had more fun today than I have had for a long time, and it took some verrrrry old 400 ISO film, and the digital era to combine to make it fun. Hope you enjoy it a little also.......