Living in the suburbs presents an interesting dichotomy. While it is a bunch of humans in big boxes, there is still the ever-present wildlife, who have adapted to having people around.
Our backyard on some days, is like something out of a Disney movie: various birds and animals coming and going. From the birds at the feeder (Chickadees, Finches, Cardinals, Grackles and now Red-winged Black Birds) to other wildlife in red and black squirrels, chipmunks and rabbits.
Tonight there was a couple of visitors, one being a new little bunny. We have a couple of domestic bunnies, and to see the wild ones are fun to see and forever welcome in the backyard. I grabbed my Fuji X-T1 and affixed the 60mm (my longest lens) to get some shots. And the chipmunk also made an appearance. Both these shots have an extreme crop to “zoom in”. The 60 is my longest lens, and I’m thinking its time to invest in something longer to get some better shots.
Here in Ottawa, and in most of Ontario, it’s been pretty dry – near drought conditions. In the last couple months, there has been half as much rain as any given one month.
So today, the sky has opened up, and over the full weekend, it’s promising to be wet and grey. Sucks for those on camping trips and vacation, but it is needed.
As I was finishing up breakfast and getting dressed, it grew darker and darker. The thunder clapped and the rain came down in torrents. I love a good thunder storm, and this one didn’t disappoint. I grabbed my Fuji X-T1 and fitted with the 16-55 I went out to get some shots. Both are weather-sealed, so I wasn’t concerned about the water problems. I was a bit damp, but got some photos. All taken with a longer exposure to get the water motion.
I put a bird feeder out in the backyard. I’m starting to find the little birds fun to watch (I must be getting old).
As the little guys were feeding away, I discovered I could get pretty close to them. So I got my X-T1 and with the 16-55mm f2.8 I grabbed some shots. They were very accommodating.
Yesterday winter made one of its last hurrahs with a moderate snow fall. I was up to Carp to see my doctor and the snow on the trees looked fantastic. As I have mentioned before, a local freight runs up through Carp on a regular basis, and I always ensure that my appointments are on the correct day and rough time that it comes through. So I had my camera with me.
After the appointment (all is well) I drove around the area to scout out a new position for the train. In doing so, I caught a few pics of the snow covered trees. The blue sky just looks awesome.
And after shooting this, I noticed the yellow fire hydrant. Blue and yellow are complimentary colours, so…
Sadly, no train came. It seems to be a no luck week for the limited freight trains around here. Did make this shot down the line heading just outside of town.
All shots with the Fuji X-T1 and 16-55 f2.8.
This past weekend there was a synchronized skating competition in nearby Kanata which my significant other’s team was skating in. After each category/grouping, they resurface the ice. During this time, I looked up and noticed the heating devices (some of them) were on. With the roof structure it made an interesting shot, so I pointed my X-T1 with the 16-55 at it, framed it up. The results below.
I always think of these things as the heat lamps like the ones that keep food “warm” in fast food places. These ones give off a surprising amount (and very welcomed) heat.
A few weeks ago I was asked to photograph a synchronized skating practice. Its a bit of a different assignment as the goal isn’t necessarily to get perfectly composed and beautiful photos. Its more of just getting some pictures. These shots are then pored over by the team and coach to see where they…well, aren’t in sync, because if they aren’t, they lose marks. But I’ve mentioned that before.
I used my Fuji X-T1 with its new autofocusing magic and the 16-55 f2.8 to grab a bunch of images.
It was a longer practice with lots of review and instruction. During one of the breaks in the skating, I saw and shot this photo of the line of water bottles. I will shoot from the player’s bench side of the rink – typically in the penalty box – because there is no mesh that gets in the way of the focus, so all I had to do was lean out. Thanks to the LCD view, I could extend my arms a bit farther out and still see what I was composing.
I was recently asked to photograph Centrepointe Theatre’s new sound system.
I am a volunteer at Centrepointe on the stage crew, primarily as a lighting operator, but other things as well. The Supervisor of Production Services (Matt) asked if I would come and make a few images of the new setup. It’s a major update for the theatre, the same speakers had been there for 25 years. These new arrays are just awesome. During the shoot, I put on some of my favourite tunes to listen to. Amazing. I heard stuff in the mix I’d never heard before. What’s more, its very high tech. Everywhere in the theatre sounds the same and at the same volume, whether you are in the front row, back row, left or right side of the stage. It all sounds equal and great.
So it was a fun shoot.
Matt is a sound guy, and gave a tour of the system and what it can do. I’m more of a lighting guy, but I have a greater appreciation of the sound end of things.
And I have to give kudos to Scottie, who did the the lighting on stage and did some extra lights on the speaker arras to make them glow a little bit more.
All shots are with the Fuji X-T1 and the Fujinon 10-24 f4 lens.
when you gat a camera, and start making images, one thing you do is make images of flowers. As a matter of fact, some nine years ago, when I bought my first dSLR – a Nikon D50, my first shot when the battery had charged was a flower on the Clamatis in the backyard. I’ve taken many a flower shot since.
But I haven’t for a long time, deciding to not go for the trivial.
However, this shot breaks that. It wasn’t on purpose. I was shooting the bees on the Sedum plant (photo to come soon) and I just pointed the camera a this flower and pressed the shitter button.
Shot with the Fuji X-T1 and the 60mm f2.8 Macro. No post processing. What you see is what I shot.
A few years back, we went to Scotland. We stayed in Edinburgh a couple of days, and during that time, we went to the Royal Mile. Within the castle grounds, they were setting up for the Tattoo. We didn’t get to see it. There is also a Tattoo at Fort Henry in Kingston, a short 1.5 hour drive from Ottawa. While looking up when that was, we came across a Sunset Ceremony. It involved pipes and drums, army maneuvers (circa 1867) and fireworks.
We made a plan to go and see it. It was pretty cool. We arrived at the fort with enough time to get a tour of it before the actual ceremony. If you haven’t been, it is a replica of the fort that was originally built in the 1812 era to defend against the United States invasion – the only time Canada and the U.S. have been at odds.
The fort fell into disrepair after the war, and in later years was rebuilt and abandoned again. The fort was gain rebuilt in the 1930s as a museum piece, and that is what is there today. The really cool thing, is that it includes regular army reenactments from maneuvers, to punishments, and all the re-enactors are “on stage” when in public view. It’s like you are a silent observer of life 150 plus years ago.
But I digress. The sunset ceremony is pretty neat. It includes projection on the fort wall and audio. After our tour we found a spot in the bleachers and took in the ceremony. These photos are a few of the night.
All were shot with the Fuji X-T1 and the 16-55 f2.8 lens. The ISO was cranked to 1600, f2.8 and the shutter at 1/128.