Monday, February 08, 2016

I Came Down With Mono

Yes, I did come down with mono — monochrome to be exact. As I do sometimes, I decided to convert some images — mostly portraits — to black & white. Actually, some are duotones, which means that some sort of colour has been superimposed on a b&w. It is duotone or split tone because a somewhat different colour is applied to the highlights and a different tone to the shadows. The first one below is an example as is the one later of Danica doing a Christmas craft.

Beginning with the boy, the first image is of him being my assistant by bearing my tripod one day last fall.

The next one is from his birthday. He was playing with some new Skylanders in the hall, just outside my den door. I was likely on the computer, and he likes to be near family.

Next comes Danica. In the first, she is doing something or other at the kitchen table, likely before school one day.

The next photo shows her working on Christmas crafts.

One recent morning we had a little cuddle on the chair. She looks a little mournful in the photo, but I think that's all it was — a look — as I don't remember her being sad that day. OTOH, I look happy because I am enjoying snuggle time.

Danica took this one of me the other day. She grabbed the camera and started shooting indiscriminately. I think I looked resigned in this photo, which I processed in a grngy sort of way.

Finally, I am tossing in two other b&w conversions, but they're not portraits. They are both of the Canoe Club building, and I liked the mono result better than the original colour for some reason.

Thursday, February 04, 2016

7 Years Old

Jonathan celebrates his 7th birthday today. The celebration actually began yesterday when we had the kids all day. Gifts were given and there was lunch at A&W with dessert at Dairy Queen.

For the past few years, I have made a collage of JJ photos from the past year. This is his Year 7 collage.

I also put together a little homemade card. This is the front of this years version.
And this is the inside.

Monday, February 01, 2016


While it has been a mild winter around here — relatively speaking, of course — it has sure been dull most of the time. Witness this photo from the other day.

Does that turn your crank? Does it make you want to visit Ottawa in winter? No, I thought not.

Meanwhile, I have taken a few more inside shots. First, we have the lion sitting down (as opposed to the biblical lying down) with the lamb ... and a polar bear.

You may call this one T for Positive Terminal Defiance. Note: the battery brand is Defiant. I used glass underneath to get a bit of reflection.

And finally, for now, a composite. Sue has been gifted with these things in the past. First came the grandma and granddaughter figurine. This was followed with a grandson figure. At some point, the book was also presented. They sit on a shelf in the upstairs hall, but in a somewhat different configuration than what you see here.

Until next time ...

Saturday, January 30, 2016

Outside and Inside in the Good Ole Wintertime

Winter continues and is about half over. Even though it has been a mild one, relatively speaking, it has still been winter, and we're mostly indoors.

It was dull yesterday, but I still broke out of the house to try to take a few photos. While there aren't too many new ones around here, or so it seems with my lack of imagination, it felt good snapping the shutter a few times.

I hadn't planned on it, but I took this shot of the Boulton Brown Apartments, near our town hall.

Carleton Place, originally called Morphy's Falls began as a mill town. A grist mill was first erected on this site (in the photo) in the 1820s. The present building dates from 1869 and functioned as the Boulton Brown Mill until a fire in 1970 put an end to it. In the 1980s, it was refurbished into an apartment building.

I also took a photo of the venerable canoe club. You may remember that I had one of my photos appear in the town's calendar. Well, I had to do some photoshopping to remove signs in that photo, so I got behind them this time, It wasn't as snow covered as in the other picture, and the building is a little marred by the new stairs out front that stand out like a sore thumb. I would hope that they are going to be painted to match this year, but I am guessing not.

Inside my cocoon, my moderate feminist self managed to get into a Facebook debate with my uber feminist niece.

In the end we agreed that we agreed on much but also disagreed in parts. I think we kept it pretty civil, but I found it a little frustrating eventually. People become so entrenched in their arguments that they seem to fail to see the forest for the trees as it were: in my opinion majoring on the minor points and minoring on the major points.

Anyway, it activated my stultified mind for awhile, so I think that's good, and I think we're still on good terms.

In other news, we had set aside time to go to the cottage for a winter retreat at the end of next week, but we have decided that right now it is too much of an effort for too little reward. We like winter up there, particularly snowshoeing in the woods, but with mild weather(anything above freezing being mild) and rain coming, it doesn't appear that it will be winter at its finest, so we are putting it off.

We have an alternate week scheduled in March, so we'll see what is going on then. All of the getting ready, packing, shopping for and transporting food etc gets a little daunting. That's probably the wrong word, but the getting ready part plus the journey seems like a greater chore these days, and we prefer the weather to be prime if we're going to make the effort.

I got the results of my blood work that I mentioned in a previous post. It seems that I passed. It was also time for a tetanus booster. Did you know that there is one concoction for people under 60 (or was it 65?) and another for those over? She also asked about family history. How long did my parents live? What took them in the end?

My father lived to be 86 and died as a result of prostate cancer. My mother lived to be 87 and died from breast cancer. Then, I told her that they were fitter than I, not carrying extra weight. That prompted her to ask my weight, so I gave her my guess. She put me on the scale, and I was pleased to learn that I am less heavy than I had thought. I guess at least some of my flabby look comes from the decreasing tone that age brings, which is why I thought I weighed more than I do. In point of fact, I was quite far off. But oh me oh my: that flabbiness.

This morning, I awoke sometime past 4 and was up by 4:30. I usually stir around that time but usually manage to get back to sleep for an hour or three, but sometimes I am forced to arise. After checking my usual internet sites, I decided to write this post of my very ordinary and banal life and times. I know that I have prattled on at good length, so it's time to stop. TTYL.

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

More Indoor Shots

As a dull winter and a dull AC creep onward, I have a few more interior shots to share.

Nothing but light. I was taken by the light coming in the bedroom window.

Same day, but at a slightly different time, I shifted my focus.

Sue gets down to her craft table in the basement every now and then and creates jewellry.

That's not a lot, I know, but it is what it is: winter in Canada. We stay indoors a lot — too much, really.

Expect more.

Sunday, January 24, 2016

Indoor Photography

While I have put my camera in the car a few times recently, I haven't got around to pressing the shutter. I have continued to take some indoor photos, however. These are of the macro/closeup persuasion. Some also involved focus stacking.

In a previous post, I had experimented with composites. This is another.

My older 7D camera, which I still use sometimes. a photobook, and a journal. Despite focusing on several different spots in this and the next photo, I find that some areas are not as sharp as they could be. I am learning that when you are working up close, it seems to take more shots than I had thought to get everything really sharp.

Some lenses: a prime. a wide angle, and a longer zoom (70-200mm).
The kittens: we purchased these as a little memento back in 1971. They continue to serve as a pleasant reminder.

My trilobite. I call him Trey. He or she lived about 400 million years ago and was unearthed in present day Morocco.

Thursday, January 21, 2016

The Doctor Called

Sue informs me that the doctor's office called and wants me to call back.

When I do, I am informed that I am due for a tetanus shot. Who knew?

I am also informed that it is time to have some blood work done. Who knew?

"Can you go to the lab soon if we fax the requisition to the lab?"

"Good. So now we can schedule an appointment in two weeks for your shot and the blood work report."

This is the way that it goes now. Now that I am a senior, they keep good track of me.

In the fall, they called to send me for a bone density test. Sue too, as well as a mammogram.

They also had Sue down for a pneumonia shot but not me. "He's not due yet, Sue. Just you."

Also in the fall for both of us: "Please come in for your flu shot."

With the exception of my bout with shingles in the summer, I seldom seem to have much need to see the doctor apart from showing up for my shots, but she does look out for me.

I like that. I like her looking out for me.

This is Canada where we suffer from abominable government controlled and funded health care. Such a burden.