Downtown Toronto

Some images from earlier this year during a short overnight trip to Toronto for a conference that I totally forgot to process until recently. Most are from one of my all time favourite buildings: the Toronto Reference Library, which is just a stunningly beautiful place.

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Cambridge at Seven

A few weeks back, my 7-year old son Malcolm and I joined my friends Kevin and Paul on a Film Revival photo walk in Historic Galt, located in Cambridge, ON.

If you’ve never been there before, it’s an absolutely stunning part of Waterloo Region that straddles the Grand River with church spires, old buildings, and so on. It gets used a lot for filming locations on shows like Murdoch Mysteries šŸ™‚

Malcolm really wanted to use my Canon DSLR, so we traded cameras and I used his VTech Kidizoom Action Cam you can read about that here. Malcolm took over 850 shots with my camera, including a LOT of the insides of garbage bins for some reason. It was fascinating to look through them and see what caught his interest.

I went through every one and picked out what I thought were the best ones and we reviewed them together and talked about what made them work (focus, composition, subject) and landed on these as the favourites. I did some light processing, straightened a horizon line or two, and the B+W Conversions, but otherwise these are more or less what he shot without significant alterations.

Hope you enjoy!

Cambridge Photo Walk with a VTech Kidizoom Action Cam

This past weekend my son Malcolm and I joined my friends Kevin and Paul on a Film Revival photo walk in Historic Galt, located in Cambridge, ON. It’s a beautiful part of town that straddles the Grand River with church spires, old buildings, and so on. Avid watchers of The Handmaid’s Tale will recognize parts of it instantly.

My son really wanted to use my Canon SLR, which left me with his VTech Kidizoom Action Cam. This camera has some … limitations… but I thought this presented an interesting challenge.

About the camera

VTech Kidizoom Action Cam

VTech Kidizoom Action Cam

  • At a total size of 1 x 2.3 x 2.2 inches, this thing is small. It was actually challenging to hold it as you can really only use your finger tips.
  • The lens is tiny – about the same as what you’d have on a older smartphone
  • The photo resolution is 640-x-480 pixels or 0.3 megapixels – these are really small images basically. For comparison, an iPhone X has a 12 megapixel camera
  • There is no manual control whatsoever – you just point and shoot… and hope.
  • I can’t say if this is a bug/feature of these cameras in general or just a sign we haven’t been able to clean the tiny lens, but I notice all the photos had really interesting blur and edgy quality that naturally produced something slightly akin to the Fractilus Photo look. It’s like the camera leaves out some details and over emphasizes others leaving a painterly feel.

What all this translated to for me was the framing mattered a lot. I didn’t process these much aside from a converting some to B+W and adjusting the brightness and contrast a bit – the results were really neat and I actually think they’d make neat set of tiny prints.

Would love to hear what you think!

 


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DTK Photo Walk

A few weeks ago, my good friendsĀ Kevin and Paul came down to Kitchener to check out the Edward Burtinski exhibit at the KW Art Gallery. The exhibit was (of course) incredible and while we were there we also got to see Kent Monkman‘s breathtaking series “The Four Continents”. It was pretty mind boggling and I am thrilled that we’re able to have such world-class art here in KW.

Inspired, we headed out into the utterly frigid streets of KW to take a few photos of our own! Here were a few of my favourites from the day.

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Old places

One of the things I love most about visiting my in-laws farm is the opportunity to photograph places and things that have been around for generations. There’s a sense of history here – everything feels lived in and well loved.

One of my favourites around the farm is this shed just behind my in-law’s house. It occasionally houses tractors, but it also holds a host of things like old windows, flower pots, and old machine parts that don’t get used much anymore.

I photographed it a few years ago, but the pink cast in the sky has always bothered my (I’m told this is a common problem with Cokin filters).

Anyway, I tried again this summer and was really happy with the result. Hope you like it!

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U of T Bookstore

A few weekends ago Kim and I had the opportunity to get into Toronto for a night while the kids were up at her parents for the weekend. It was one of the first trips we’d made to T.O. together in quite some time.

We walked through Church and Wellesley Village, whereĀ KimĀ used to live,Ā and my old neighbourhood, Little Italy. We had dinner in the tiny restaurant where we had our first date and spent a lot of time walking around looking at what had changed, and what hadn’t.

One of Kim’s favourite things to do in Toronto, is to pay a visit the medical section of the University of Toronto Book Store. As I’m on kind of a book buying hiatus until I finish reading all the books I own, I opted to take the opportunity to take a few pictures of this awesome building!

Enjoy!

M

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