Today would have marked my father’s 80th Birthday. One of the few things I have kept of my father’s is his camera. It’s nothing special to anyone but me. Valued at $40 used on eBay. The Praktica is nothing more than a 35mm chunky camera.
The reason it’s special to me is that my father realized that when I was born- he did not own a camera. He went out and bought it within a couple of days of my birth. Partly because there was some uncertainty in my living beyond a short while. I had respiratory issues from birth. But that’s another story. This camera was purchased in 1976- the original receipts and warranty card are still in the carrying case.
I ended up using this camera in high school back in the mid-nineties for my photojournalism class. I took numerous black and white photos with it as well as colour pictures. Some of those ended up in the year book. Including my favorite which was a collage overlay of four photos together making up the front of the school. Not too easy to do when there was no preview screen and had to wait to get the images developed.
Now as our son enters grade 11- he has taken up photography as his art major. With it came a curiosity of my father’s old camera. In the first week of photo classes, he went through four rolls of film just taking black and white photos with it. Soon he will develop the pictures and see what he has created.
The one picture that my son wants to take with the camera is one I am impressed he thought of. It’s nothing outrageous, but rather one that brings the camera’s journey full circle. He plans to take some photos of my father’s tombstone- using the same camera that my father had bought to take pictures of me at birth. It’s quite convenient that the graveyard is merely steps away from the school grounds.
I’m not going to lie, at first I had a tough time allowing my son to use the camera. But he has been respectful and understanding of the sentimentality to me. He keeps it in the case and is very careful when handling it. As I said, there’s no monetary value to this item. But it means a lot to me as I wish my father could have seen the lovely grandkids that were produced. I would hope he would’ve been proud of me. But I didn’t become a good father to impress him. I became a good father to spite him.
Happy 80th Grampa. You missed an entire world, yet somehow you are still a big part of mine.
I have been enjoying the vividness of the world lately. Specifically the colour contrasts that occur outside over head. I cannot stop enjoying the skyline.
The sunsets have been spectacular over the past year. It was something I don’t remember-because for fifteen years, we were surrounded by trees. As I watch the sky change colour, I am awestruck on a regular basis that I was somehow missing out, yet no one else really talks about it. Just a regular part of everyone’s day that was taken for granted.
But seeing the sky change so dramatically had me thinking about the inverse colours of some of my regular items. I snapped a photo of my blue lava lamp and pink salt lamp just to see the difference. It’s as equally stunning in a psychedelic kind of way. I think that the next time I see a beautiful pink sunset, I will try to capture the inverse of it as well.
Are you enjoying the sky as much as I do? Perhaps you have taken numerous photos as well. Or maybe you have done more artsy images of inverse colours. I’d love to see them.
Our children have all been attending, or have attended, the Langley Fine Arts School. Each of them began in the music program. The choices at the younger ages (until grade ten) for picking an “art major” was limited to four choices. Drama, music, dance, visual art.
Over the years, the children were able to expand their horizons and interests. Our oldest went on into film. Our middle moved to writing after a stint at stop motion. And our youngest is wanting to change from music to photography. My wife and I have fully supported each child as they progressed into the newer fields. The best part is that the school also encourages the talented students to join the various after school music groups even if not in the major.
Our son has been working on photo manipulation and was really proud to share with me the following project.
The class was instructed to take an image and “paint” over it. They used computers to edit the image. Our son really enjoyed this assignment and as I said, was really proud of his results. And so are we.
I think it’s absolutely fantastic that he can explore various creative options; and that he likes to do it. Any time we can encourage our children to explore their passions, we will. So far, our kids have proven to us that changing their art majors has been beneficial to their growth. I hope for them to keep up with their hard work.
I love taking pictures of the artwork on rail cars. I enjoy how an image can tell a quick story.
I also like taking my pictures with a bit of an artistic flare. It’s amazing how lighting and backgrounds can change the feel of the image so easily. Not to mention the filters that smartphones and apps have available. An original image can change completely given the appropriate filter.
Taking pictures of inanimate objects is easy enough. Especially if the art is worthy of a photograph. Catching the right light and angle is also important. Rule of thirds, leading lines, framing- any of the photographer’s special gambit of artistic flair is made easy using railroads and rail cars. I have been doing it for years in order to perfect those skills I learned in high school photography almost thirty years ago.
I appreciate Instagram for being able to showcase and see some fantastic images. There are a lot of talented photographers out there who make a subject jump out at you and make you feel emotion.
I’m feeling contented and courageous by sharing my pictures regularly. I hope you all enjoy seeing the art from my point of view that others have painted. Feel free to follow me on Instagram and see more pictures of rail cars and my life.
The sun was shining extra bright this morning. It added a glow through the windows into our home. This glow brought me joy. So I took a couple of pictures. Pictures of corners.
I miss photography. There’s nothing “special” about this photo of our window looking into the backyard. But it is filled with artsy attributes. Leading lines, rule of thirds, and natural framing. Plus there’s sunshine adding to the natural lighting. A feeling of happiness was brought to me post-night shift.
Because I worked a night shift, it was time to go to bed. In our bedroom the blinds were closed and the bedside lamp was on. So I took another photo of the corner of this room. This corner is directly above the lower floor where I took the first picture. Again, I took a picture of leading lines and rule of thirds. Only this time before I went to sleep, I manipulated the photo with some Instagram filters.
The different effects are neat and really change what the camera sees. Of course, I’m only using my iPhone for these images. I still love photography and enjoy taking artsy style shots from time to time. I just can’t bring myself to purchasing an expensive camera in order to take amazing pictures. So I have to settle on what my eye sees, what my phone can capture, and what quick manipulation an app can make.
Do you enjoy photography with your smartphone? If you want to see more of my pictures, follow me on Instagram at BinaryDigit01.
My wife was kind enough to allow me to take the window seat for BOTH flights in and out of Fort. St. John. To me it’s kind of a big deal. I’m 6’8” with long legs. Usually I sit in the aisle and stretch out a bit. I also take the aisle seat so I can walk around during a flight.
This last set of flights were short enough that I could cram myself into the edge of the seat against the wall. I took a bunch of photos. Many of which turned out blurry. But I managed to capture some beauty of our province.
I love night time photos. The city lights on the ground showing the hustle and bustle of life below. We also sat at the tail end of the wings both times, so some of my photos were obscured by parts of the plane. We all know what it’s like to look out those tiny port windows.
But I think that adds to the reality of the journeys. I still find the magic in the reality of flying. Here we are thousands of feet in the air in a floating metal box while life goes on below us. Most of us forget that planes zoom above us everyday, carrying thousands of people to their destinations.
Within a few days, I’ll be there as well. Completely forgetting that I was up in the air, enjoying the window seat for the first time since childhood.
Everyday I cross two sets of train tracks near our home. I’ve been doing this for over a decade now. Recently they changed one of the crossings.
They removed the stop sign and installed some lights. Needless to say that many of the local residents are having a difficult time adjusting. Since many have lived here for a long time. Even though I know it has signals and no more stop sign, I still slow down as I approach. Perhaps it’s the railroader in me exercising caution.
At the other crossing I sometimes stop and take a photo. There can be something beautiful about the skyline and the tracks that needs to be immortalized in a picture.
Thursday at Twenty Mile Bay was filled with a couple of long hikes and a few big meals. After breakfast, we ventured around the campsite along the water’s edge and capture some amazing pictures, and a little snake.
We did a ton of artsy pictures throughout the day. My daughters and I discussed photography (as I took it in High School, and they are as well). So we tried to out do one another.
The end of the day, we sat around the campfire and tossed in some Mystical Fire to add some colours to the flames.
It was a great way to end our last night of camping.