January Roundup

Well, that was fast. It’s hard to believe that we’re almost one-twelfth (8.2%!!) of the way through 2021. Here’s a somewhat random roundup of what I saw and captured this month… mostly around the house, of course.

Pandémie oblige.

SOOC Saturday

If you’re not a photo geek, you’re probably wondering what SOOC means. SOOC is short for “Straight out of Camera,” the idea being that no post-processing was applied to an image after it came off the camera’s memory card. Depending who you talk to, a SOOC image is more “pure” and somehow “better” than an image that was heavily manipulated in Lightroom, Capture One, Photoshop (or whatever—pick your poison).

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Whither August

August is one of those funny months.

It’s still most definitely summer, but the relentless heat and humidity of July starts to lose its edge. The A/C can take a rest, and sleeping with the windows open is a more-often-than-not proposition.

It’s still most definitely summer, but the laziness and the laissez-faire of those heady July days is now well in the past. A “new year” looms: back-to-school, back-to-work, back-to-reality.

Time to get serious. Time to eat as many meals outside before Mother Nature makes dining al fresco decidedly unpleasant.

I didn’t shoot much in August… got too busy with work, the Big C kept me closer to home than I liked and sapped some (most? all?) of my mojo. But I did shoot some. To paraphrase the great Jonas Rask, this is random at best.

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Backyard jungle

Living on a small property in the suburbs, it’s really quite difficult to call any vegetation growing back there jungle-like. However, photography is remarkable in its ability to simultaneously reflect and twist reality, just by tweaking framing, angles and focal length.

And tweaking colours takes things to another level altogether.

It’s not easy being green

Lately, everything has been coming up green. It’s incredible to see how in the space of a month, everything just exploded with chlorophyll…

Unfortunately, this tree is no longer with us. I wanted to take a picture of it recently and it was gone! This is from the archives.

Random acts of ornamenting

Just this past Sunday I went for a little walk in the woods near my house. To get some fresh air. To clear my head. To take a few pictures. To escape the ever-intensifying drumbeat of Christmas, Trump, Brexit and all the other calamities befalling us these days.

I didn’t know what kind of pictures I would take. It was a typical overcast, dreary Ottawa winter (well, late fall for the pedantic) day. The light was, for the lack of a better word, shitty. Flat. Lifeless. Not exactly inspirational.

Then I saw the balls.

Whimsical, lonely little Xmas ornaments on random trees here and there. They put a smile on my face.

They brightened up an otherwise dull day.

I’m sure there are more out there, so I’ll have to go back.

All images shot with Fujifilm X-T2, XF16MM F1.4 and processed in Capture One.

The Peanut in Acros

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We have this great peanut-shaped lamp in our living room; a study in minimalism, it has clean lines and gives off a nice, diffuse glow.

I’ve always wanted to shoot it, but there are only so many ways it can be shot with visual interest. Then it hit me: what about a double exposure?

These are all in-camera Acros double exposures on my X-T2, straight out of camera.

(Click on an image to see it in a lightbox)

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Câline de blues

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A blue sky is something to be celebrated at this time of year. It’s all too rare.

They say you get the blues when you’re down; I find blue in the right places uplifting. Liberating. Light.

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After the cold

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Winter has arrived early and aggressively this year in Ottawa. There’s been snow on the ground since just after Remembrance Day and it hasn’t let up, with record-cold temperatures for the past 10 days.

The cold has finally let up, and fog came in its wake.

This is gonna be a long one.

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A little stroll down Duluth St.

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Duluth Street runs from the foot of Mount Royal park all the way to Parc Lafontaine. A narrow street, it’s dotted with boutiques, restaurants, bars and cafés intermingled with the apartments and old walk-ups. It’s a quintessential part of the “Plateau” that just shimmers in the low autumn sun.

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The Painted City

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The Plateau Mont-Royal arrondissement (district) has transformed radically over the years. Traditionally a haven for bohemians and artists, the Plateau has been gentrifying for what seems like forever now, but it hasn’t lost its unique flare.

One thing that stands out is the sheer quantity of murals everywhere. On the sides of commercial buildings, residential buildings, new buildings, old buildings, there’s barely a square meter of blank wall to be found.

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