Archive for the ‘Photography’ Category

Dave Nolan as seen by Harry Gils (larger than life)

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I saw this massive skateboard pic of Dave Nolan near Yonge and Dundas.  While the shop posting this massive ad doesn’t even sell skateboards at least it’s by a Toronto photographer (Harry Gils) and is shot here in Toronto.

Epicly Tdotted

Studio Gallery is showcasing the photography of Patrick O’Dell.  O’Dell is a New York based skateboard and fashion photographer. He’s probably best known for his work with Vice Magazine and his photo-journal and Vice Television show called Epicly Later’d.  The  exhibition opens tonight and runs until July 23rd.

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TO ALL MY FRIENDS
The Photography of Patrick O’Dell
Studio Gallery
June 27 to  July 23
294 College Street, 2nd Floor
(Just west of Spadina above The Savannah Room) 

Spring Has Sprung

Well, I could write about the TTC, about how the union wants the Mayor or the TTC Chair to take over negotiations, which they would of course because the union can easily pound them into flat meat and get a “yes, whatever you want” from either of them, thus guaranteeing another fare hike. Or I could vent about the new ginormous blue boxes, whose blight on the urban landscape is easily discernible to anyone driving from east to west, from blight to friendly, and whose sizes makes one pause about how serious Toronto is about reducing waste production — just because it’s recyclable doesn’t make it more virtuous than trash that gets landfilled or, more enlightened, made useful by being turned into electricity (now that’s high-tech recycling for you!). All waste comes from consumption; all waste requires power and materials to be manufactured in the first place, and recyclables need power again to be turned into something else that will then again be put into the waste bin.

Instead, I’ll just show you the best part of spring.

Man-Made Nature


Birding Place

Photo by Points North

It’s hard to believe that this large geographical feature in the east end of Toronto was built by a long line of trucks dumping clean rubble from various construction sites around the city. Since it was just a pile of fill, nature has slowly but tenaciously taken over and created a green space at the bottom of our city.

It has become a favourite place for birders, and remarkably, one can find exotic plant life there as well, plants such as cacti. In the cold days of winter, it seems hard to believe that this bleak place harbours so much life. But even when the wind blows snow across this headland, colloquially called the “Leslie Street Spit,” birds gather to sing and feed. And birders and photographers gather to watch and shoot.

The Upside to Winter

As much as we Canadians like to whine about winter, the snow, the cold, the winds, the endless (these days) grey skies, there is one really nice thing about this time of year. Yes, it is true that during the cold winter months, there are no mosquitoes, no blackflies or flies, no cats digging in the garden (or if they are who cares right now), no stinky skunks, for the most part, and no wasps, but those still aren’t the nicest part about cold weather.

Nope, the nicest part about winter is that the marauding, vandalizing, city-sanctioned masked bandits are hardly to be seen. Our garbage, our decks, our gardens, our dogs and cats, and ourselves are safe…until mating season.

Snowy Days

This February has seen triple the usual amount of snow falling on our streets, lawns, trees, and heads. Snow started falling last year, and at first, Torontonians were none too happy and slipped, slided into cover. Now we shrug over 10 cm, as we did yesterday. Perhaps, too, Torontonians finally discovered the usefullness of snow tires and relearnt how to drive in the snow, and so it no longer fazes us. I hope white winters continue. There is nothing more depressing than looking at brown on the ground and grey in the sky.

The Perfect Lunar Eclipse

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Last night is was a toss up between the Lunar Eclipse and The Toronto Raptors. For me the I decided to stay indoors and watch the Raps manhandle the Orlando Magic. For Soaleha, one of our top MB Toronto Flickr group contributors, it was the Eclipse.

Birds in Toronto

Toronto is filled with birds of all colours — red, grey, brown, blue, pink, multi-colours, polka dots — and songs and styles. We’ve become familiar with the peregrine falcons that inhabit our downtown, but have you heard of the Red Poll or Yellow Breasted Chat? Members of the Toronto Bird Observatory have, and until one whiny couple screeched at city staff to force them out of High Park, they banded and tracked the birds flying through and staying in Toronto about once a week. You can see some of the multitude of birds that hide among us on their blog at tboweb.blogspot.com. The photo above is of a House Finch.

Getting Some Sun Energy

Remember this unseasonably hot day last October? Remember what it felt like to bask in warm, calm-inducing sun? I don’t know about you, but I’ve just about forgotten, and we’re paying for that sun deficit. It seems like many of us have gone into full hibernation mode after weeks of grey days and too few sunny ones, feeling too spiritless to engage with each other, even through a relatively easy forum as the comments section on a blog. But who can comment when thinking takes work?

While Americans lean back in a comfy chair, eyes closed, imagining their dreams today on their holiday, we ought to do the same. Yeah, our governments are too parsimonious to give us a stat holiday in January and Ontarians are bitchin’ about the new stat one in February, but we can take our own day off, like the man in this photo. While people around him walked and flew kites and huffed and puffed over the volleyball nets, he parked his chair and parked himself and simply soaked in the sun until he was re-energized to get back into life. We may have to do it under glass when the sun does peek out, but to me, it’s a marvelous idea.

Cloudy Days are Depressing

I’m not troubled by SAD. Short winter days, and long dark nights don’t bother me. But endless cloud does. Day after day of nothing but grey grey grey really gets to me. It makes me just want to curl up under a blanket in front of the fire with a cup of hot chocolate and a good book. OK, maybe a PSP game.

I yearn for the sun blasting out of the sky into my windows and deep into my place. Even just a shot of sun shining through a layer of mist and particles would lift me up. But those old days of endless winter sun and cold are over. Now we’re into Global Dimming and the sun has become a rare sight, or so it seems. Getting today’s mail from the city asking for my choice of bin doesn’t help my mood any either. The thought of bin gardens replacing wild gardens and lawns and rose gardens and becoming the new neighbourhood look — everywhere but those places with big garages and big properties — just depresses me. So what to do but watch the fat squirrels stripping the trees of their remaining seeds and hope for a better day.

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