Monday, June 27, 2011

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Zowee! Just spent the evening at a Steve Earle concert. Gooooooooooood. And Allison Moorer? Ditto.

Friday, June 24, 2011

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

A postcard from Vancouver.

Monday, June 20, 2011

O.K., enough with underground trains already!

Sunday, June 19, 2011

If you've never seen the documentary "Silverlake Life", you really should.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Still nothing to do with Wednesday night. This was taken on Monday. Funnily enough, just after I'd spent an evening surrounded by large numbers of police officers, including Vancouver's Chief of Police, Jim Chu (very nice guy). Don't worry, they were all off-duty, attending a charity event.

Friday, June 17, 2011

Nope. Again, nothing to do with the recent hockey riot.

But, pursuant to my post from yesterday, the shot of Save-on-Meats, shuttered and looking doomed, there's this little bit of good news. The new owner sounds like a pretty good guy.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Nope, I was nowhere near last night's charming events downtown. Why anyone would attend a hockey game is beyond me. I'm thinking, however, that bringing back the pillory mightn't be such a bad idea. No jail time for the clowns responsible, just erect enough pillories to hold 'em all, set 'em out, and let the people of Vancouver come by and give each one of them a good smack in the face. No fists allowed. Just a good, well-delivered, smack. I suspect downtown would sound like endless strings of firecrackers were being set off. Of course, there'd be ice packs for people whose hands got tired or bruised while smacking.

Once that was done, dressing up the idiots in clown suits, shackling their legs, giving them brooms, and making them spend the next year street sweeping, rain or shine, would also seem fitting. A little levity, a little community service - what's not to like?

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Hockey killed my fencing night. Went down to the community centre, nobody there except myself and our fencing master. Everyone else, sensibly, stayed home, fearing the horrible drive they'd face once a hundred thousand or so hockey fans hit the road home, too.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

So, last night was interesting. Spent it photographing the goings-on at a fund raiser for a group here in town that works with kids at risk. It was founded by cops back in 1997 (I think), and they produce documentaries, take high school kids on walks through Vancouver's Downtown East Side (home to a lot of folks who've made some major errors over the course of their not-likely-to-be-long lives), and generally try to head off any kid who might wander down that path. Good work that's mostly thankless.

Now, I'm a cynic in a very big way, so last night's event was something of a source of conflict. Many, if not most, of the people at the benefit were, to say the least, well off. Why were they there? My thinking is that they never have contact with the people on the streets of the Downtown East Side (Feel free to go back in this blog to see some photos thereof). I would also think that they'd happily see those folks packed off to jail. They certainly wouldn't support taxes to try to treat them, or improve their lives in any measurable way. So, why would they give money to a cause that aims to prevent young people entering the numbers of the disadvantaged? And therein, of course, lies the answer. They're helping the advantaged avoid becoming the disadvantaged. They're helping "their" people avoid becoming "those" people. And making themselves feel pretty spiffy in the process.

Or am I just being too cynical? I'd really like to think that they're genuinely trying to be helpful, but...

Well, on a more politics-neutral point, the photo is of Holly Cole's piano player. He was darn good. So was my camera. Another miracle of modern technology. That's a hand-held shot, at 1/250th, at the rough equivalent of a 300mm lens, in 35mm terms (I was using a Nikon 70-300), at 1600 ISO. For a guy who used nothing but prime lenses and Kodachrome 25 for years, this is a modern miracle.

The modern miracle is not, however, without its drawbacks. Thanks to digital, I was able to take over 500 shots of the evening (and I mean OVER). Which I now get to plow through looking for the shots worth sending on to the event's organisers. Oh, gees.

Monday, June 13, 2011

The fencer on the left has just launched a fleche. Basically, you hurl yourself at your opponent, arm extended, hoping to blow past his defences and score. In this case, it worked. Pretty well, in fact. He's now the B.C. provincial champion.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

O.K., I'll admit it (to those of you who don't already know this about me), but I'm a big Woody Allen fan. His worst movies are better than 99% of what comes out of Hollywood. He at least thinks about things and tries to express those thoughts with some intelligence and wit. So, for me, there's no such thing as a "bad" Woody Allen movie. There are good ones, better ones, and really really good ones. His latest, "Midnight in Paris" falls into the latter category. Go see it.

Saturday, June 11, 2011

So, I spent the day at a fencing tournament, photographing members of my club as they went through their bouts. I had originally figured this would involve a couple of hours spent in a gym, watching some darn good fencers do their stuff, and taking photographs of them while they did so. Wrong. Seven hours and some five hundred frames later (in both JPEG and RAW, mind you), the event finally ended. Sustenance for the day? Half a bottle of water and a bag of popcorn. I was on a break between bouts when I took this picture.

And now, of course, you have some idea of what's probably coming over the course of the week.

Friday, June 10, 2011

Yes, this is red. For most of you, I'm sure that's no big revelation, but, for those of us with a somewhat defective X chromosome (those of us who also happen to have a Y chromosome), that judgement can be problematic. Colour blindness is one of those fascinating phenomena. I'm red/green colour blind, but I can see that this is red (and, no, not just because it's a car's tail light). Other people classified as red/green colour blind might, indeed, judge it as green. I love things like this because they're such good illustrations of how our brains construct reality for us. We like to think "we're" in charge, the "we" in that being an independent entity, somehow above mere physical phenomena. Well, we're not. Our senses take in all sorts of data, report it to various integrating centres in our brains, and those integrating centres tell us what it all means. Not just what colour it is, or what it is, but how we feel about it, and what we want to do about it.

The brain's a pretty fascinating place, all in all.

Oh, and there are even a few folks with two X chromosomes who have trouble with this sort of thing, but, in their case, both have to be "broken" as far as colour perception's concerned, and that's relatively rare.

Thursday, June 09, 2011

O.K., O.K., that's enough with the shipping department. It's a sickness, I know. I just love these big, weekend-abandoned, industrial parks. I don't know why.

Wednesday, June 08, 2011

Tuesday, June 07, 2011

Meanwhile, back at the industrial park...

Monday, June 06, 2011

I'm addicted to industrial parks. There. I've said it. I'm not proud of it, but...

Saturday, June 04, 2011

If the weather keeps going the way it was today, this place'll be packed with splashing kids in no time.

And, no, that's not vignetting. Trees.

Friday, June 03, 2011

Things do indeed fall apart.

Thursday, June 02, 2011

Wednesday, June 01, 2011