I grew up on the eastern(ish) side of Canada, a long, long way from any ocean, but on the shore of a beautiful little lake. While the ocean was far away, there were lakes everywhere!
It wasn’t until my 31st year that I found myself living with the ocean at my doorstep. That ocean was a very long way from home. In fact, it was all the way around the world. Despite 30 perfectly happy years without the ocean in sight, I became firmly coastal. While I accept that I’m not likely to ever own that dream beach house in this very developed world, I’m feeling pretty committed to at least living nearby. As a result, many of my favourite images are by the coast. Throw in a dramatic sky and I’m all set.
This particular piece of coast is on the west coast of Canada, in Vancouver.
Found these Canadian Geese on a summer stroll at Reifel Island Migratory Bird Sanctuary south of Vancouver in British Columbia, Canada.
Hopefully, this is me getting back to regular blogging. It’s been pretty patchy since May, but I have good excuses. Packing up house and moving around the world to Melbourne, Australia takes a bit of effort.
Sorting, purging and selling started in May and got serious in June. As of June 28, we were officially homeless and our lives were either packed up in suitcases or in a big metal box. We took the suitcases with us and wished the big metal box an uneventful 10-week trip across the Pacific. We then set off on a six-week tour of Canada, visiting friends family on the west coast, camping through the beautiful Rocky Mountains, visiting more family in Southern Ontario, invading the homes of friends in Ottawa and then back to Vancouver again.
The image above is the city of Vancouver as seen from Stanley Park during our visit to the west coast of Canada.
On August 19th, exactly one month ago, we arrived in Melbourne with very little organised beyond a hotel and a hire car. Given the low starting point, we’ve accomplished a lot in one month. We moved into a house (shipment delivery day was very exciting!), we bought a car, we bought appliances and furniture, the kids are back in school, the older one has high school sorted, we’ve caught up with a few friends, and I’m back to full-time (non-photographic) work.
Although we’ve been away from Melbourne for two years, everything is so familiar that it seems like it was just a blink.
Taken on a borrowed camera, edited on a borrowed iPad, and uploaded using a borrowed laptop.
In this image, we have a makeshift game for the kids. Take a beached log and float it out perpendicular to the beach. Then challenge the kids to see how far out the log they can walk before they fall in. Lots of laughs and very cold kids.
Sorry folks, but I’ve been off skiing at Sunshine Village in Banff National Park where they’ve had 9m(!) of snow this year. I even took a break from photography and left my camera at home.
For my first day back from vacation, rather than working on this blog, I worked on a post for Digital Darkroom Techniques (DDT). If you’re curious how I do textures in my images (like the one above), pop on over to DDT for a look. If you have suggestions on how to approach textures differently, I’d love to hear from you.
Since I have no new pictures (did I mention I’ve been skiing without my camera?), I’ve pulled an image from my Salt Spring Island archives to do a little texture work. While the base image is old, the textures are new and I’m sharing if you’re interested. When I was recently in Arizona, we visited the Musical Instrument Museum (MIM) in Phoenix. At the MIM, they have an extraordinary collection of drums and I shot almost every one of them for my texture collection. I’ve shared nine of them in my post on DDT just in case you want to add them to your collection.
This week, after many happy years, Duffy (aka Duff, Duff-Duff, Duffers, Duff-man, Duffy-dog) passed on. Duffy is my in-laws’ Cairn terrier. He was a friendly, playful, loyal little dog who loved being part of the action (especially in the kitchen). He loved going for walks and was very protective of his territory (that little guy could ration out little sprays of pee for miles!). He was a much bigger dog in his imagination than in reality. He barked with authority at the really big dogs on the street (as long as they were behind a fence, and even sometimes when they weren’t).
While he was a pretty, easy-going dog, sometimes he had a whole lot of stubborn in him. Once, while on a walk he grew a bit tired and lay down without warning. My mother-in-law didn’t notice and started dragging him along. He still wouldn’t stand up. Now, that’s stubborn! And when he was stubborn, he did what he wanted, when he wanted.
He was the big dog, in charge of his little pack. He leaves behind the younger and feistier Rascal (aka Razzy, Raz-Ma-Taz, Razzle-Dazzle). The house is sure going to seem quiet without him. So long Duffy.