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Saturday, December 31, 2005

Happy New Year!!



I wish you all the best in the New Year! Cheers!!

On New Year's Day, I will be attending the 86th Annual Vancouver Polar Bear Swim. I hope the weather is as good as last year, it was a blast! If I get some good shots, I'll post them here again for all to see.

Friday, December 23, 2005

Which Reindeer are you?

You Are Dasher

You're an independent minded reindeer who never plays by the rules.

Why You're Naughty: That little coup you tried to stage against Santa last year

Why You're Nice: You secretly give naughty children presents.

Sunday, December 18, 2005

Japan revisited

When I was in Japan last spring I brought a film camera along as well as my digital equipment. I haven't really done anything with the film I shot there yet other than get some contact sheets made. I was looking at those the other night and there are a few photos that I really like. Here is one of them:



This fox is one of many located at the Fushimi Inari Shrine in Kyoto. They are very attractive with their bright red bibs on. The fox is considered to be the messenger for Inari (Shinto god of rice).

Friday, December 16, 2005

A Gaggle of Geese



Here's a photo I shot of some geese at Burnaby Lake last October 2004. I found this while I was making backups of some of my images today.

Thursday, December 01, 2005

Graduation Ceremonies

To a good friend of mine who just graduated from the police academy;

Here's to you! I wish you and your fellow officers all the best in your future with the police force. You've worked hard, and you've been through hell, now the day has come and you made it! Cheers!



Monday, November 21, 2005

Happily Ever After



This past weekend was my friend's Wedding. It was a perfect day for them, and a nice wedding out in Fort Langley British Columbia. I was his best man, but I also brought my camera along with me and snapped lots of photos.

Thursday, November 17, 2005

Takayama-usagiya


A friend of mine from Japan is coming to visit Vancouver in the end of December. That got me thinking about Japan and all the wonderful experiences I had there. I was going through some old folders of pictures that I shot when I was there last winter. I came across this one of a bonsai. I shot this photo when I was touring the Japanese alps in Takayama. It's an amazing place to visit, because it's completely different than any other place I've ever seen before. Here the houses are small, and most of them don't have yards, but each house has a very small area in front for their precious bonsai trees. I saw a lot of these trees there, and each one was amazing, because they are so old and valuable. Probably passed down through generations. Yet, these people don't have to worry about anyone coming along and taking one, because it just doesn't happen there. Hard to believe isn't it? Especially when you live in a big city. One of those valuable bonsias wouldn't last 5 minutes on a patio here.

So anyway, I crouched down to take a picture of this one, that is in it's winter dormant stage. It was perfect. I heard some people laugh at me when I crouched down to take the picture, probably because they don't see very many foreigners there. It was a small village, and I stood out, being the tallest white guy around.

That's a big kitty!

Saturday, November 12, 2005

Remembrance Day (Canada) November 11 2005

Another November 11th passes by. I went down to Victory Square in Vancouver this morning to see the Remembrance Day ceremonies. Not as many people showed up this year because it was raining cats and dogs, and it was very cold and windy. I felt sorry for the soldiers, cadets and war veterans that had to stand at attention in the cold and wet weather for so long.

I couldn't expose my camera to the rain, so I was limited to shooting behind the crowd from under an awning. Ironically, after the Ceremonies were over, the rain stopped, and the sun even came out briefly.

Here are some photos from today:

























When I look into this veteran's eyes I can only imagine the suffering he has experienced. He's been through hell and back, and for what? They say we won the war; what did we win? They say it was to stop an evil tyrant from taking over the world, but I'm sure there is a lot more to the story than that, because while he was out there selflessly risking his life to protect democracy, some corporate fat cat was back home in America watching his profits soar, and safely enjoying a soda by his swimming pool at his million dollar mansion. The rich never have to go to war.

Saturday, November 05, 2005

Watching the sun set

A scene from the end of summer. I don't know this couple, but it looked like they were enjoying a peaceful time as the sun was setting over English Bay in Vancouver.

Tuesday, November 01, 2005

Halloween Pumpkin Mayhem

I was handing out candies to the kids with my friend this year for Halloween. It was a blast. We made crazy pumpkins and watched zombie movies. I wore a freaky mask to scare the kids with. I didn't wear it for the little ones though, as I didn't want to give them nightmares.

Here's me:







These little pumpkins were all terrified because a big pumpkin was eating them, ergo the pumpkin guts everywhere (viewer discretion is strongly advised):

















Oh, the horrors!





Wednesday, October 19, 2005

Thursday, October 13, 2005

Older unusual lenses

Since I acquired a special M42 mount adapter for my camera a couple months ago, it's opened up a whole new world of imaging possibilities for me to explore. There are a large number of lens manufacturers that produce lenses with the M42 screw mount. Carl Zeiss, Pentax Takumar and several other Russian and German lenses as well. The greatest thing about it is that most of these lenses are not very expensive, yet they have excellent quality optics. A couple of weeks ago, I purchased a few of these at a big camera swap and sale. One of those lenses is a Meyer Optik Gorlitz lens, which I purchased for a mere $10.00! It's a 50mm lens with a maximum aperture of f/1.8, and it has a very close minimum focusing range, which I think is great! Here, you'll see I've compared it with a Pentax Takumar 50mm f/1.4. Both lenses are shot with their aperture wide open and both at their minimum focusing distance:

Here's the Pentax Takumar:



and here is the Meyer Optiks Gorlitz:




As you can see, they have distinctly different characteristics. The pentax is sharp, and even wide open it has fairly minimal halo effect distortion. It's an excellent, fast and sharp lens. But the Meyer Optiks lens has a lot of halo type distortion and an extremely narrow depth of field. I actually really enjoy this type of distortion, as it's quite a nice artistic effect when applied to the right subjects. I'll experiment further. By the way, the Meyer Optiks Gorlitz lens is a German Lens from the mid to late 1960's.

Monday, October 10, 2005

Monday, October 03, 2005

Langley Cruise-In

Here are some of the photos I shot at the annual Langley Cruise-In this year:


This is the General Lee, one of the actual cars used in the Dukes of Hazzard movie.





There were lots of Cobras there. I liked this one:











Here's a rare car:

















No car show is complete without a DeLorean:







There were even a few cool bikes there. Here's one with a chrome guitar case:



This was my favorite car at the show. The paint on this car was amazing, you really had to be there to appreciate it fully: