Saturday, March 2, 2013

Night Life

Sometimes all you need is a quite night of inspiration. The night is where I find most of my ideas.
First is a photo of an alley by my house, where it looks like spring will never see.
The second is much more interesting. This is the longest (digital) exposure I've ever made: 1051 seconds (17.5 minutes). It's a self portrait of me reading comics on my phone with all the lights off. Took an exposure or two to figure it out entirely. The aperture was closed as could be (F22) ISO bottomed out (ISO100) and the time I just guessed for metering. I think I'll call it Cyberpathy. As for the how, it was pretty simple with the right equipment: a tripod, and an old school cable release with a lock. I locked it shut (holding the shutter down) and had the exposure time on BULB, and set a timer on my phone. A very little tweaking in post and ta-da!
Archipelago Photography

Friday, March 1, 2013


You hop just a tiny bit over the border and it's amazing how much the urban landscape can change. We went to the United States for a day-trip on Family Day (or as they call it in the US of A, Presidents day) for some shopping and family camaraderie. The store on the top just killed me with laughter. "Guns. Survival Gear"; in what way are they related? In the centre of North America guns are not for safety or survival. Not to split my audience on gun control, but seriously? In a nationalist, patronizing way, I find the first image pretty amusing.

Thursday, February 28, 2013

A Typology of Eyes

For another Ryerson project we were to create a Typology and I did mine of eyes. These are the 36 eyes of 18 people that are close to me. The eyes are randomized because it really isn't about the people themselves, but about the nature of an eye

Four by Five

They say that analogue photography is dead. And some places, it is. There are lots of schools out there that don't even teach it anymore. Thankfully, Ryerson is not one of those. These three photos were made with 4inch by 5inch analogue film. "Is that as much of a pain-in-the-ass as it sounds?" you might be thinking and the answer is "yes!".
The camera is huge and unwieldy, the tripod (which is 100% necessary) is obscenely large, the film is easy to screw up and bloody expensive (don't even ask!), and yet, there's something about it.
True, it's never quick or easy, but it's almost always worth it. I have never found myself taking a terrible photo with it, because it requires a lot of thought. By placing these limitations on us, we are learning how to really see and shoot with immense intention. It also teaches us to respect our roots. They were in fact times before the ease of a DSLR or a camera phone.
I have hated it at times, but I think when all is said and done, I will thank that horrible machination that gave me such beautiful negatives.

Monday, February 25, 2013

Visual Studies

Many of the photos I'm posting nowadays were created for school assignments, so at least here's some consistency. These three images were created for my Visual Studies class, aka critiquing and composition class. the images are in chronological order, and are my second, third and fifth assignments. The second project was about using found images (textures) in Photoshop to create a three-dimensional looking image. The third was about creating a compositionally dynamic still life image. The fifth project was about photographing an interior environment; a cross between a still life- and a landscape.

Snow Day

I've always found photographing snow a difficult procedure. The exposure is often tricky because the visual nature of snow is much brighter than your camera's meter would like it to be. The other reason is because of depth. If you watch a photographer search for an image, you may see them close one eye while they look, and for a long time I wondered why. And then it hit me; we see in three dimensions, but photography lives in only two. The human eye can see more depth than we can fit in an image because we essentially see with two cameras (our eyes). So having only one eye open can show what it is like to see things in two dimensions. And a lot of subjects look much different, including snow. What to us looks quite detailed and interesting can come off as flat in an image without the proper lighting or because the texture of the subject is only interesting with an extra visual dimension.
     These three images were from a few weeks ago when Toronto had quite a bit of snow quite quickly. The streets, sky and sidewalks all started disappearing under the white mass while the people fought to remain warm and/or dry. The city ground to a slow crawl while the snow came down. I also, had no school, so I spent a couple hours out shooting the snow.