Monday, December 24, 2018


I wish everyone a Very Merry Christmas and a great and happy new year.

Tuesday, December 18, 2018


The tradition continues. Every year we have flowering amaryllises as our favourite Christmas flower and every year I take pictures of these magnificent flowers. Sometimes I photograph them in colour other times, like this year, I prefer the black and white interpretation. 

Thursday, December 13, 2018


The few weeks before Christmas are certainly a busy time. So picture taking and posting has been placed on the back burner. But last week I walked into a local business and saw this display of table lamps. Of course I could not resit taking some pictures of these whimsical creations. 

Sunday, November 18, 2018


Winter has definitely arrived early this year. Last Friday we had a heavy snowfall. In the morning I went to one of my favourite spots at Kinsmen Beach to take some pictures. I was looking for some very minimalist subjects like the these two trees. The background is not the sky but the dark water of the lake which has not frozen yet. A fast shutterspeed kept most of the snowflakes sharp while my large lens opening allows for the snowflakes close to the camera to be completely out of focus, just to add impact to the image.

Sunday, November 11, 2018


Yesterday we had another big November snowfall. So I took a little trip up the road to the Black Forest. Walking down one of the trails I saw the wind blow the snow from the trees. I liked the effect but of course I was too late to capture the beautiful grey tones swirling around the trees. I waited for quite a long time, of course it did not happen again and then a man came along the trail with his dog. We were talking when all of a sudden a windburst blew the snow right into the scene. I just snapped the shutter not certain I got my shot. Well I got lucky. Here is the result.

Saturday, November 10, 2018


Tomorrow is remembrance day and I thought that this poem by Wilfred Owens expresses the horror of war and in particular the anguish and pain of the first world war. A note on the  quote from the Roman poet Horace "It is sweet and fitting to die for your country"

Saturday, November 03, 2018


Last Thursday Dan, Kirk and I made a return trip to the Burks Falls and Magnetawan area. A few years ago I had photographed an old truck on the road to Magnetawan and of course we had to stop to take pictures of this old work horse. Originally it was an old army truck, we had no idea how old it was and it certainly has not been used for many years. It certainly was a great subject for some good images.

Wednesday, October 31, 2018


I took this picture two weeks ago after seeing the great exhibition Anthropocene at the National Gallery in Ottawa by the collective of Edward Burtynsky, Jennifer Baichwal and Nicholas de Pencier. The show is very powerful and should be seen by anyone even slightly interested in the environment. Edward Burtynsky is not only one of the foremost landscape photographers but also a great environmentalist. I chose this image of elephant tusks. In the exhibition Jennifer Baichwald shows the burning of these tusks from 7000 elephants, which were confiscated from poachers by the Kenyan government. It is a  very powerful and emotional documentary. Two days ago, the WWF published their report The Living Planet 2018 document an astonishing decline since the nineteen seventies of 60% in the size of populations of mammals, birds, fish, reptiles, and amphibians largely linked to human activity. 
So, if you get a chance go and see this very important exhibition at the National Gallery or the Art Gallery of Ontario in Toronto.

Saturday, October 27, 2018


Another picture from our photo trip  to South River. I am still looking at the landscape pictures by Don McCullin and also at the photographs of another favourite photographer of mine Joseph Koudelka. Both of them are famous of course for their documentary work but they have made very powerful landscape photographs. Their images are quite dark,reflecting the strong emotional quality of their journalistic work. 

Saturday, October 20, 2018


Yesterday was a great day for another photo trip. Gerry and I left early in the morning and decided to go to some of the small villages and towns South of North Bay. The weather started was very nice, a crisp sunny Fall day, but later in the afternoon the sky clouded over. Still we had some time before the rain started and ended up at the railway bridge in the village of South River. Most of the fall colours were gone so I concentrated on getting some good black and white pictures. Returning home both of us came back with some fine images.

Tuesday, October 16, 2018


I think David might like this image of the old abandoned church too. My idea was to recreate a romantic, maybe even a nostalgic view of this old building. It is basically a straight toned print similar to the architectural prints of the nineteenth century photographers. It is a pity that this building is left to simply deteriorate. 

Monday, October 15, 2018


After photographing this old abandoned church, I wanted to take pictures later in the season when the trees were changing colour. It was a little disappointing because there were not that many brightly coloured trees around. but I made some fine images. My idea was to create a picture reflecting the feeling of the passing of time. So I used a variety of techniques recreating the old sepia toned pictures with some added colour. The final image is reminiscent of the old autochrome photographs of the early twentieth century.

Wednesday, October 03, 2018


This is the black and white version of yesterday's posting. It is more dramatic interpretation of the than the coloured image. This morning I was looking at some of Don McCullin's dark and somber  images from his forthcoming book Landscapes. His pictures are rich in textures and beautiful lighting. When working in black and white I always look for the same visual elements in my images, strong dramatic light and rich textures similar to McCullin's landscape work.

Tuesday, October 02, 2018


Fall has definitely arrived. Walking along the beach I took quite a few pictures of the waves and dramatic sky. Initially I was thinking this is definitely a scene for black and white of course but when I started to process the picture on the computer I  decided that the final colour image was my favourite. 

Thursday, September 20, 2018


Photographers are nearly always attracted by old derelict buildings and, I have to admit , that I enjoy photographing these old places. I guess that the attraction is the great richness on textures and patterns. So, when John suggested that we visit this house, which he had photographed a few years ago, I was quite interested in seeing the old place. I was not disappointed so we spend some time photographing this old abandoned homestead. 

Tuesday, September 18, 2018


A few weeks ago I posted a few scanned pictures from my files. In the seventies and eighties I had photographed regularly in the greater Sudbury area. So John and I made a little excursion to see what is left of that really desolate but very interesting landscape. To our surprise most of the area around Sudbury  has changed.The barren rocky landscape has been transformed, which is beginning to resemble the traditional Northern Ontario landscape with predominantly pine trees. John and I found remnant of the old barren landscape  around the Stobey Mine. Its a pity that you are not allowed in on the property because the rock formations are beautiful and we would have loved to wander and explore the landscape. 

Sunday, September 02, 2018


Going down the street this morning I passed the old Thorn farm property and I just had to stop and walk into the abandoned fields to wander around this beautiful natural garden. It was raining and that created this wonderful soft atmosphere. what a great visual feast.

Wednesday, August 29, 2018


I made this picture on a trip to Nova Scotia. it is a scanned image from a  colour negative before I completely switched to digital photography. It is an interesting exploration going through my old files and I will spend quite a bit of time going through all my old files. It promises to be quite atrip of rediscovery. 

Tuesday, August 14, 2018


The blue grey colour of the house and the magnificent blue Summer sky with the strong contrast of yellow and red truck, is what attracted me to this otherwise mundane city landscape. I toned the overall colour down to accentuate the brightly coloured new truck.

Wednesday, August 08, 2018


This picture is for John and Bob, who both told me that the statue of Christ was still for sale. Last year I posted a picture of the same statue. But I guess the owner could not get the price he would like to get so he is displaying the statue again. I don't think it includes the angle I simply liked the subject and it certainly makes for an interesting garden design.

Monday, August 06, 2018


This morning I was looking for some images on the computer, I came across this picture of a wall I photographed quite a few years ago in the Kitchener area. In my photo wanderings I am always interested in abstract painterly subjects. it probably comes from my interest in the visual arts.This complex subject rich in textures, colour and pattern  is a very intriguing image.

Thursday, August 02, 2018


Traveling along the road from Cache Bay to Verner, we stopped off at a farm with an interesting feed silo. I had photographed this silo many years ago when it still had a weather vane of a horse. The young farmer gave us a tour of the farm and explaned that his dad designed and built the silo using concrete building blocks which he poured himself using a mould he made himself. It must have been quite a job.

Wednesday, August 01, 2018


Another image of one of the boat sheds in Cache Bay. It is the weathered surface of the wood and metal, which gives this picture such a strong visual effect.

Tuesday, July 31, 2018


Along the shores of Lake Nipissing we came across a cluster of boat houses. Most of the sheds were not the elaborate boat storage sheds, with a few exceptions, but were put together of a wide variety of  materials. This of course was great for us photographers, who like a great variety of textures and colours. We will certainly return here again at different seasons to make more images of this place.

Monday, July 30, 2018


This time I am posting a colour view of the same church. As I mentioned yesterday, I like both black and white and colour. Keeping the colour version more muted I was aiming to create emphasize a view, which reflected a historic perspective of the building.

Sunday, July 29, 2018


Yesterday my friend Gerry and I made a return trip to Cache Bay. I had visited Cache Bay a couple of times in the last few weeks on a photo trip. But this time I wanted to make some pictures of this old church which has been abandoned for decades. The weather was just perfect, I like taking photographs on overcast cloudy days and both of us had a great trip , which gaves us some very fine images. My idea was to take black and white pictures however I did like some of my colour images. I did end up using the black and white image of this church, as I had intended to do.

Thursday, July 26, 2018


On my daily walk yesterday, I passed this rock covered with lichen.. The light filtering through the foliage created a pattern of light on the top of the rock. The colour was quite green because of the leaf canopy overhead. I took a few close up pictures, but I was not sure if the images would be interesting enough until I downloaded them on the computer. I like the abstract quality of the image, which evokes a sense of mystery.

Tuesday, July 10, 2018


The last few weeks it was very hot and I think everyone was glad when this heatwave finally broke over the weekend, but it still is very dry, even after last night's  thunderstorm, which created a few  forest fires in the area around the city. So when I was looking for an image to post today I thought about this picture of a rusty metal lid on a box just outside the library, which I took last week. It certainly is a good abstract impression of the hot Summer weather.

Monday, July 09, 2018


Concentrating on my subject I look for the abstract in a realistic object or composition. In this particular image I was interested in the red and blue verticals and the strong texture of the wooden background and the more subtle texture of the sandy earth. To give the composition strength I look for the simplest composition,  which  reflects how i perceive the subject.

Friday, July 06, 2018


Last March I posted two pictures from an abandoned sawmill site. Well, yesterday John asked if I would like to go on another visit to the old sawmill. What a difference, the heat wave we have suffered for the last two weeks was still in full force. Wandering around the site was like walking around a large furnace. We still were able to get some very interesting images. My intention was on black and white subjects like this old, I guess furnace, quite an appropriate subject for the  this scorching day. The temperature hovered around 35ºC to 38ºC. Today would have been a better day because the heat wave broke overnight and left us with a far more comfortable temperture.

Monday, June 25, 2018


Last year the old farmhouse at the beginning of our street was demolished. Of course everybody was sad about the disappearance of the old landmark. All that was left was just a large patch of sand. But nature has its own way of bringing this barren piece of land back to life. Yesterday I stopped to look around and there was a beautiful natural garden with a abundance of wildflowers. It definitely was a a glorious natural garden.

Monday, June 18, 2018


Walking back to my car last Thursday, I looked back and I noticed the red lantern in the window across the street. It made a bright focal point in this strong colour composition.A simple subject but a strong visual image.

Wednesday, June 13, 2018


Here is a picture of the backyard. It shows a very chaotic but colourful landscape filled with a variety of sheds, tools and other various small work tables with a totem pole as centre piece. 

Tuesday, June 12, 2018


Actually John named the owner Capt'n Morgan because he did look like the portrait on the sign. The gentleman gave us the full tour of his property. He introduced us to some of his friends the rooster and his chickens and a few ducks. Again it is a great place to just browse and take pictures. We certainly will make a return visit.

Monday, June 11, 2018


Last Saturday we discovered this odd looking curiosity store along the road near Cache Bay. Of course we could not resist stopping to take pictures. It was a little confusing because one sign indicated the store was closed while the other sign read open. Luckily the owner was outside and invited us in. The place definitely was great fun to photograph but definitely very chaotic. I will post a few more pictures in the next few days, which will give you some idea of this unique store.

Monday, June 04, 2018


A rainy day today and a good time to teach myself some new composition techniques using Photoshop and onOne RAW and of course an image from the old MACK truck I recently photographed.  It was quite fun working with the various filters and realizing the enormous variety of images you can create working with these powerful programs. All in all a very fruitful day of learning.

Sunday, June 03, 2018


Yesterday I drove to Sturgeon Falls, which is now part of the community of West Nipissing.  It was a great day for an early morning photo trip. It had been awhile since I walked around this town. Although I did not take many pictures I came back with a few nice images. This picture is a very simple but interesting image made of rectangular shapes and dominated by the colours yellow and blue. I like these very concentrated compositions made of very few shapes and textures.

Thursday, May 31, 2018


The weather has been too nice to be working inside on my pictures in my digital darkroom.I had posted a picture of this old truck covered in snow in April and promised I would go back to photograph the same truck in the Spring. The landscape looked different and I thought almost as abandoned as the the old artifact. The final result is best in black and white, reminding me of the old pictures from the American Farm Security photographers in the depression years of the thirties.

Friday, May 25, 2018


The garden is waking up. A couple of days ago I made some pictures of this very graceful Solomon's Seal. The unfolding leaves created a very simple, but visually, beautiful  sculpture, which translated in a black and white image, suggesting some classic Chinese or Japanese ink drawing.

Sunday, May 20, 2018


The building is of course not really abandoned because it is still used for storage but obviously it is not inhabitable. A few days I was thinking, its time to make a photo excursion up North again. Cobalt is a fascinating place with a rich history and every time I go there it has changed. Maybe simply in my imagination but there is a feeling of a certain community vitality. This picture I made two years ago. I had photographed this building before so , looking at the image I thought that it would work best in monochrome and here is the result. It looks like an image made in the thirties by Walker Evans, a photographer whose images of the cities and towns in the USA inspire me.

Friday, May 18, 2018


Another detail of our Spring excursion along the small creek. I am not interested in photographing water in slow motion to get this, what I call, the cotton wool effect. It looks nice but I think the effect has been overused. I like detail and texture, so I photograph with a very fast speed, which freezes the motion creating rich detail. The effect in the image is quite reminiscent of the detailed night images of the the milky way at night, but in addition I also have the motion of the water.  An effect I enjoy.

Wednesday, May 16, 2018


Last Monday Dan had invited Gerry and me on a small photo excursion along a private trail. It was a glorious Spring day. No black flies yet to interrupt our walk along a small creek. We pend a few hours taking pictures of the rapids. I concentrated on the textures and reflections of the water because I found the sunlight too harsh, which created too much contrast on the white waves of the rapids But we will return on a day when the light is much softer.

Thursday, May 10, 2018


Spring has truly started so instead of spending time on my photography , it was time for cleaning up and working outside in the garden. But I did spend time on going through more of my old negatives. I found some very old negatives which I took in 1960. At that time I visited a clog maker or klompen maker in Dutch. It has been such a long time that I can't remember exactly where I took the pictures. Scanning and processing the images takes quite some time but it is bringing back many memories. The clogs are made from poplar or willow wood. In this picture the painted clogs are left outside to dry. Now back to working on the rest of the pictures.

Sunday, May 06, 2018


Last Friday evening we went to the opening of Paul Kelly's exhibition at the Kennedy art gallery here in North Bay. It was very wonderful to see Paul and his wife Susan again. The show was very a surprise for me because Paul has gone back to his roots in design and colour theory. It isa show worth seeing so, if you are in North Bay just go and have a look. Paul was telling me how much he likes my black and white photographs. So, i have gone back to my roots in black and white photography and scanned in the very old negative from 1974 when I was interested in the bleak landscape around Sudbury.When first walking into the landscape was the almost surreal environment. The rocks were all black and pitted caused by the sulfur released during the smelting of the ore. All the trees were gone of course except the dead wood laying strewn all over the landscape. But as I mentioned before in some earlier postings, the city of Sudbury has been doing and amazing job restoring the landscape.

Wednesday, May 02, 2018


Sorry David but I have to disappoint you this time. Yesterday I took my car in to have my tires changed, so I took a walk into the area behind the garage. It is actually a large are of disturbed land. Walking through the parking area I had to jump over different little streams of melt water and of course I could not resist photographing the sand ripples and the textures of sand and gravel. When I worked on the image it looked to me more like flames than streaming water. Anyway here is the final image.

Saturday, April 28, 2018


At last Spring has started, although today we still had some snow but at least the ice is starting to break up. This morning I made a little excursion along the shore and made a few interesting images. The light was very nice and was able to get a few dramatic pictures. The black and white images were visually more dramatic than the colour versions. Of course, lately I have been quite interested in black and white photographs. This picture reminds me of Bill Brand's dramatic landscape photographs.

Thursday, April 19, 2018


This was an image I really enjoyed working on. What intrigued me was the old cedar, which had grown all around the rock. Time had added the rich texture of the old dead tree and the lichen all over the rock surface. The subject would have greatly interested Edward and Bret Weston, two photographers I greatly admired. Way of working with a picture is quite fluid. I simply try different techniques using Adobe Lightroom then transfer the image to Photoshop and Adobe Camera RAW then into On1 Photo Raw then back into Photoshop for some final tweaking of the image till I am satisfied with the result. Do I know exactly all the steps I have gone through to get the image I am satisfied with? Well no only the general workflow. So no exact process.

Wednesday, April 18, 2018


Another negative from my trip in North Western Ontario. We were staying in a camp on Pashkokogan Lake near the First nation's reserve Osnaburgh House, which is on HWY 599 just South of Pickle Lake. At the time, that part of the highway had not been paved so it was quite dusty. What struck me was the abandoned stuffed toy animal, sitting forlorn on the side of the road. The whole scene was covered in dust and the negative was quite flat. I had taken some closeups of just the animal but never printed this negative. Looking at it again I preferred this overall view better than the closeups. As I said, it was a difficult negative to work with but after working on the image in Photoshop, I am quite happy with the result.

Tuesday, April 17, 2018


This picture is from some photographs I made many years ago when I was invited by a German geologist to accompany him on an exploration trip in north Western Ontario. This particular image was made when we were checking various sites on lake St. Joseph.It had some very interesting landscapes. I think Moremiles and David would have appreciated that trip. I took only black and white film on this trip and it is interesting to work again with these old negatives. Ansel Adams always said that the negative is the score and the print the interpretation of that score. I totally agree with that analogy. So now working on the computer my interpretation is quite different from my earlier prints.Again, working on the computer is very similar to working in the darkroom.

Monday, April 16, 2018


A last image of the Coniston area. This image is for John and David because both of them enjoyed the rock landscapes I posted. This is an overview of the landscape as I saw it in 1989. Much has changed for the better in the Sudbury area, as I already mentioned before. It would be interesting to go back to the places I photographed to see the changes and maybe it is still possible to find some of the original bleak landscape. But we will find out this Summer at one of our photo excursions.