2017-01-01

New Year 2017

Well, here we are 17 years into the new millennium and second decade of the 21st century.
I am blessed to greet this new year ... another year with my wonderful wife who rescued me from a pancake disaster.
It seems that a lot of things have happened and changed at or near this pivotal point.
For instance, at one time in the 20th century, innovations were much slower to come to the forefront. A new style of telephone or new flagship camera would last for several years unlike today's head-spinning introduction of newness of this, that, and the other thing happening several times in a single year!
The rise of a computer manufacturer to a mobile communication world leader and the rapid rise of digital photography which has devasted the film photography industry are just two examples. These last two points are of most interest here because as great as the benefits of digital photography may be, it has changed human behaviour in ways that are debatable. Today we can be anywhere in the world with a cell-phone camera, a mobile connection and share photos and video instantaneously with the whomsoever.
Nevertheless, there are still those who work with photographic film, process it and print upon silver-gelatin fibre papers in a real darkroom. There are still people who meet for coffee, lunch, and dinner, but now with the interference of mobile phones. Oh well, nothing stays the same.
I have made it a tradition now for the last several years, i.e., 2009, to get out on the first day of the new year to make my first images. This year I had eyed an apple tree in the neighbour's yard as seen from my kitchen window. Unfortunately, the day was windy and cold with a light covering of snow upon the grass and the sun struggling to break free of the clouds. I was working with my Mamiya 645 Pro TL and using Velvia & Acros films rated at ISO 100. I started with the straight 55mm Sekor lens, but changed over to my 55mm - 110mm Sekor zoom lens for the majority of the shoot.
The house appears abandoned and the trees neglected. The branches were drooping down to the ground heavy laden with yellow apples. Some were rotting on the tree, others were partially eaten by birds. I was out there with my camera set up on a tripod patiently waiting for breaks in the clouds to catch the sunlight on the drooped over apple tree and while waiting noticed a beautiful hummingbird with a bright red chest and a robin pecking out of an apple in an adjacent apple tree. In this instance despite the cold weather, I found observing while waiting to make photographs just as rewarding as coming home with a couple of rolls of film for processing.
Please stay tuned ... images to follow.
You see, the anticipation of waiting like waiting for Christmas is lost with digital. Why have we become so impatient?

Processed on the 05th here are the negative scans ...

2016-12-18

Architectural Photography

Here is a modest example of my architectural work.

2016-12-07

Black & White Spider Awards

This year, three of my black & white images were nominated in the 11th International Black & White Spider Awards.
Here is the announcement sent to me:

NOMINEE ANNOUNCEMENT

Dear Bob,

CONGRATULATIONS on being a Nominee at the 11th Annual Black & White
Spider Awards with:

Nominee in Abstract | Ogden Walk
Nominee in Children of the World | Study Time
Nominee in People | Reflective Conversation

7,556 entries were received from 71 countries and your work received a high
percentage of votes overall. Certainly an achievement, well done!

The Jury represented the industry's biggest names and tastemakers including
National Geographic, Washington DC; The Armory Show, New York; TBWA,
Paris; Victoria Film Festival, Canada; Aeroplastics Contemporary, Brussels;
Studio Hansa, London; Fratelli Alinari, Florence; Australian Centre for
Photography; Young & Rubicam, Lima; and Anthem Worldwide/Marque
Branding, Sydney who reviewed the entries online before making their
nominations and honoring 627 title awards and 951 nominees in 31 categories.
The Awards could not have wished for a better group of professionals to
work with.

Congratulations once again, we wish you a most successful photography year.

2016-09-01

Moved into my new place today in Tillicum area.
Little bigger than the one on Shelbourne, but I miss being close to the university.

2016-03-12

Film Processing

Visited my parents back in the little town of Ponteix, Saskatchewan in late February.  It was refreshing as I have not been home that often after having left shortly after high school graduation.
I looked through the old yearbook, took note of the changes my parents have made to their home such as getting rid of the wood stove and pool table.
Being back home was peaceful and filled me with memories for a time that cannot be re-lived. Oh if I only knew then what I know now, how I could have made a few changes to my plans.  I guess this is a part of what regret feels like.  If only I had known how insignificant and how little people cared about me and my dreams, perhaps I could have ....  If only I had been more realistic about my abilities and the things I tried to pursue.  I wonder how different things might have been if I had approached the professional photographer in Assiniboine for a job for instance.  I use to marvel at his big Hasselblad cameras when he came to do school photos and the fact that he was a sharp dresser who drove a Cadillac left an impression on me that was not easily forgotten.
Anyway, I digress, visiting my parents was also a time to introduce my new wife - a wonderful woman who makes living a worthwhile pursuit again.  It was also a time to make a few new images and process my first rolls of 120 film back in the downstairs bathroom - boy I haven't processed film there in decades and it was only 135 film at that time.
Visited a couple of my favourite spots at a lone stand of a few trees clinging onto life about 4 or 5 Km out of Aneroid.  I first took the shot back in the early 1980s with Kodacolour II film at that time.  There was short grass prairie broken with a well-worn cow trail leading towards Aneroid just beside the few trees.  Another favourite spot is in Aneroid at the abandoned school house.  As I work in this area I can't help but think about the guffaws of laughter and excitment that must have transversed the airwaves of this school years many, many years ago.
Another thing I like to do is monitor the area where I discovered a long-necked Plesiosaur in the early 1990s, but it was too wet to venture into that area this time.  The great disappointment about this fossil discovery, however, was that the sign on the highway intersection reads "millions of years" when in fact the creature only existed thousands of years ago.

2016-03-01

Called to check-in for teaching with the Calgary Board of Education and found out they had the wrong phone number for me, so after rectifying the situation it was no more than five minutes before I got a call to go in to teach at an elementary school downtown.

2016-01-30

I'm back

First few hours back in Canada. Landed in Calgary. Met my cousins girlfriend who gave me some ideas about where she works, so before retiring for the evening here in Calgary time, I had applied for two jobs at Bow Valley College.
Today got a new phone number for here in Canada.
So many things need to be done especially find a place to live and get a car to name just a few.