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Waving to Bogey

Hi Folks:

The other day we were driving south back to Victoria when an SUV passed us. In both the front and rear passenger seats were two boys who were waving to other vehicles as they passed, and they were both quite excited when I waved back. It reminded me of another day, another highway, and this story:

Before we continue, we need to introduce Bogey. He’s the oldest of our (currently 317) kids, and Bogey and Mike have been traveling together for more than thirty years. Bogey has been to Europe, several US states, and across Canada from one coast to the other. He’s been stuffed in backpacks, ridden on ferries and when sitting in the back seat always wears his seat belt, of course.

Continue reading “Waving to Bogey

2014: The Year of Hugging Exuberantly

Hi Folks:

Well, this is our fifth year of hugging Victorians (and others); mid-July and we’ve already had six free hugs sessions this year!

Marcia's Hugging Stance

Basic Hugging Attire – Poster, Sun Hat, Winning Smile…!

Continue reading “2014: The Year of Hugging Exuberantly

Photo of the Month - June: Collecting Stories

Hi Folks:

There’s an old adage that says ‘A picture is worth a thousand words’, and since we’re both writers and we’re both photographers, in a given month we can collect a lot of ‘words’. In June we shot nearly 600 images between the two of us, and choosing one image is never an easy task. That’s my excuse for choosing two images for June. :-) These two images were chosen both because they’re good images in their own way and because of the stories they have to tell… Continue reading “Photo of the Month – June: Collecting Stories

Happy Birthday, Canada!

Hi Folks:

While we may not always be very vocal about it (typically Canadian), us up here in the Great White North are proud to be Canadian, and that’s never more evident than it is today – Canada Day.

When we were downtown yesterday there was someone from the local news channel who was asking people whether (as with this year) Canada Day should be celebrated on July 1, or whether it should be celebrated on say the Monday of that week (like Easter Monday, for example) to allow for a long weekend. While there are some celebrations that are based on a certain day of the week (for example, Easter is celebrated on the first Sunday after the first full moon after the vernal equinox), July 1, 1867 marked the signing of the British North America Act that made Canada into a country. We’ll keep our date, thanks – quietly, but proudly! Continue reading “Happy Birthday, Canada!

Photo of the Month - May

Hi Folks:

Things have been quiet around here of late; we’ll have to see what we can do about that!

Our photo of the month for May is a tribute to Marcia’s dad’s sweet partner, Joyce. She slipped away quietly on Friday, May 30. In her own way she was the perfect blossom of his life.

For Joyce

For Joyce

 

Okay, that’s it for now. Go out and make some photographs!

Hugs,
M&M

Photo of the Month - April

Hi Folks:

One of the (many) benefits of living in Victoria is that we have the beauty of Beacon Hill Park to enjoy year round. In addition to the many wildflowers, the wildlife, natural landscapes and gardens populated by flowers, shrubs and trees from around the world, the park is also home to about three dozen peafowl. The vivid displays of the peacocks are very popular with tourists and locals alike (not to mention, hopefully, the peahens), but many people are surprised to discover that peafowl can fly.

The image of the month for April is one Marcia captured with her new pocket camera. We trust you’ll enjoy it!

Peacock

Okay, that’s it. Now go out and make some photographs!

Hugs,
Marcia and Mike.

Creating 'Solarized' Images in Lightroom

Hi Folks:

Solarization or the Sabatier Effect is a technique that goes back to the 19th century. While it was likely first discovered accidentally, it came to be used for creative purpose. Solarization is a technique of grossly overexposing a negative so that some or all of the image becomes reversed – the brightest become darkest and vice versa. This was sometimes seen even in early Daguerrotypes and was later adapted to printing as well.

Fast forward a couple of centuries, and overexposing your sensor simply gets you a histogram with no highlight detail… not nearly as exciting.

While it’s possible to create this kind of effect in Photoshop using layers and blend modes, as I’ve mentioned in earlier posts I like to play around to see what I can create in Lightroom. Now, since Lightroom doesn’t work natively with layers, it’s really impossible to do this with just Lightroom, so I turned to the LR/Enfuse plugin from Timothy Armes instead. Originally created for merging HDR exposures, the LR/Enfuse plugin can be used creatively in other ways as explained here: Using the LR/Enfuse plugin for Lightroom. LR/Enfuse is donationware, and well worth whatever you can afford to pay for it.

Creating this effect in Lightroom is actually quite simple. Essentially one begins with an image, converts it to monochrome (B&W), duplicates it and creates a negative version of that. Then the two are joined together using LR/Enfuse. We’ll go into that in a little more detail. Continue reading “Creating ‘Solarized’ Images in Lightroom

Victorious Voices, 2014!

Hi Folks:

Earlier this month Marcia and I were pleased to attend the 5th Annual High School Slam Poetry contest known as Victorious Voices. Started by Jeremy Loveday, this fifth year had contestants from more schools than ever before, and this is wonderful news!

Slam poetry was founded by Mark Smith (So What!) in the late 1980s. For those new to slam poetry, the competition rules are fairly simple. Each poet (or team) has three minutes to present their poem. Following that is a short grace period, but going over that time results in a time penalty. All poems must be original and poets can read their work, but props and costumes are not permitted. A few poems this year (or rather parts thereof) were sung, something we’ve not seen before.

Continue reading “Victorious Voices, 2014!

Eating Our Way Through Tofino… Again!

Hi Folks:

Back at the end of March we decided to indulge our fascination for beach walking and combine it with a little winter storm watching by heading across the island to Tofino. We’ve stayed in Tofino three times now; as it happens each time was at a different location. We wanted to wait until after the Whale Festival to avoid the crowds, but we weren’t aware that many B&Bs and the like don’t generally open before April. We ended up staying at the African Beach Cabin, and were very glad we did! Continue reading “Eating Our Way Through Tofino… Again!

Photo of the Month – Angel Wings

Hi Folks:

It’s been a challenge to select a Photo of the Month for March… partly because together we made over 1500 images in March (admittedly many are for composites), but also because, in addition to Victoria’s colourful beauty this time of year (with the explosions of blossoms all over the city) we also made a trip to Tofino for a little beach walking and storm watching time. The weather while we were there was blessedly cooperative for a pair of photographers! We also made a stop in Coombs at the the Butterfly World and Gardens on our return trip. How to pick one image to represent all that?

Finally decided on this one as it sums up the best of everything from the past month. The beach sand and the shell remind us of our walks on both Chesterman Beach and Tonquin Beach in Tofino and our own Dallas Road shoreline here in Victoria, the shape pulls up memories of the butterflies in Coombs, and the butterfly also brings us to the many wonderful flowers we experience every day in our walks around our Pacific island paradise. Might also be a nod to the invisible ‘angels’ who seem to guide serendipitous events around us… :-)

Angel Wings

Angel Wings

Original image made by Marcia on her Samsung Galaxy S4, pushed around some in Lightroom. Okay, that’s it. Now go out and make some photographs!

Hugs,
M&M