Thursday, 6 December 2012

Waiting for my son to do his gymnastics, which are held in a light industrial/storage facility up on Dalton Avenue, I found a place where someone hadn't come to a stop early enough.

The smooth outer faces of modern building materials lend themselves to clean, abstract, and often elegant patterns, but damage is much more obvious than it might be on a more variegated surface.

Wednesday, 28 November 2012

A closer look at the storm drain at Crear Park.   When the water is up at its normal level the waves coming into the end of the pipe make strange gulping noises.  This time of year the water's edge is at least a metre away.

Thursday, 22 November 2012

24by36 has had a long wait while undergoing a technology upgrade -the joy of Lightroom 4! the misery of Windows!- but here are a couple images to freshen things up.  The first continues the unofficial series of nice places to sit, here a bench at the Little Cataraqui Conservation Area just north of the city.  A few leaves still left on this autumn day, the boys feeding scores of chickadees along the paths.

Down at the Lake the water is as low as it's ever been, exposing the end of a storm drain at Crerar Park:

Monday, 15 October 2012

I received as a graduation present a superb tripod, which I immediately put to use.  It helps me slow down and think while photographing,  but oddly enough it also allows me to add movement to my pictures.  These windy autumn days are great not only for colour, but also that sense of change which I hope to show in pictures:

Even in the depths of Lemoine Point (path #2, my perennial favourite) winds reach right down:

Between gusts:

And out under the breezy sky again:

I always end up pointing my lens out over the lake, where on this day the atmosphere was certainly in motion.  Like plants, the timescale of the sky is often so different that the great roiling atmosphere appears gentler than it really is.  Pilots and meteorologists know better, of course.

Even a quiet evening sunset can occur beneath violent air currents:

But stillness passes through often enough:

If you walk west from the Cataraqui Cemetary and follow the power lines, you'll find an extensive wilderness of deciduous forest and scrubby marshes.  Wherever you go you can hear the sounds of traffic and construction pressing in- these woods are only getting smaller.  I did find a forgotten billboard, now hidden from Highway 401 which it faces, an indication of how long this area has been left on its own.

Someone else was watching:


Friday, 28 September 2012

 A retired manure spreader on Gladstone Farm just north of the 401.  Gently rusting and resting under the green canopy.  Warm afternoon sun.

The overpass of Sir John A MacDonald Boulevard and the train tracks.  A clean sweep of concrete under a clean sweep of sky:

 Meanwhile, down at on the lakeshore strange things are crawling out of the primeval ooze...

...and hideous monsters meet their end on the rocks:

But really, a tree is no less a strange form of life, it's just that its ruthless struggle for life occurs on a completely different time scale, so that we are apt to see serenity and beauty where really only violent self-interest operates:

Now that summer has given way to fall, new patterns emerge from once living things:

Soon, it'll be hard to remember that things grew in such abundance during the summer:

Monday, 10 September 2012

A bench at Patterson Park overlooking Lake Ontario.  One of the nicest sitting places of any I've found in a Kingston Park.  Here it is from another angle, backed by the little copse at the west end of this small park:

I was out riding along the Adolphustown Road just east of Jim Snow Drive when I suddenly noticed this small abandoned barn quite near the road.  It sits just behind the concrete pad of a demolished house.  I've ridden past there before, but never noticed it.

And on the way back is another of my favourite parks: Everitt.  I love the views from here although they are often too empty for a successful picture, but on this blustery day there was an excellent sky.

Here, looking in the same direction.  I had to choose my moment between the boardsailors zipping back and forth having a fine old time.

Friday, 7 September 2012

Anchor Chain on the Alexander Henry.  For whatever reasons, I've been doing a lot of nature pictures recently, but here are a few pictures of machinery to get started with.  Marine above, obviously, but below pictures of the trains that regularly unload materials at the Invista plant near our house.  Trains are very evocative for many of us, of course.  Up close, what I feel is that tremendous weight concentrated on that tiny point of metal to metal contact:

 And while the sides of railcars are so often canvases for graffiti tags, they also carry their own cryptic markings:

I'd like to begin working more on pictures of the sky.  I get annoyed when they turn out blank in many of my pictures.  Of course in the summer the sky is often simply a blue sheet, which my be nice to look at, but doesn't tend to be interesting in a photograph.  But I found myself at Lemoine Point with some great cloudscapes evolving:

Of course a good sunset needs a few clouds as well.  Here's one over the prison farm I caught from Old Front Road:

 These grasses seemed a lot like a wave where they leaned over the mown portion of the path that begins at the end of Queen Mary Road.

Right behind these grasses is the skeletal frame of a dead tree.

There's a rather extraordinary patch of lush wilderness here between Bath Road and Princess Street.  There are paths all through it, but not many people.  I'd never seen it before, and on the day I found it, before our long dry spell, it had an almost English richness to it.

It's connected -in principle if not actuality- with the new path that begins near the junction of Portsmouth Roa and Counter Street, where a fine area of wetlands lies right beside all the traffic:

I found this clearing at Lemoine Point.  It wasn't within the conservation area, but my feet were when I took the photograph.  Grass on a forest floor often gives a clearing a special aura.

Nearby, driftwood sticks on the beach-

A stand of young Red Pines at Little Cataraqui one morning while walking with our sons.


Windblown Willow trees in Crerar Park:

I've always had a special affection for boardwalks that go through marshy areas.  Their environment is so rich and fascinating, and you walk a little elevated and detached, but at any moment something strange and wet is happening right at your feet.  On the grounds that all pictures are, in the end, pictures of home, here is a boardwalk at Silver Lake Provincial Park, where we camped a couple of times this summer:

Tuesday, 14 August 2012

Downtown on Ontario St, having an ice cream, I started looking at the first condominium to go up on the waterfront:

In the foreground is the old folks' home, with someone waiting for the bus.

The grounds of the Memorial Center have been renovated, but the barns and stables remain unaltered: old, ramshackle and strangely rural buildings in the middle of the city:

At the height of summer there is a very rural part of Kingston, namely the erstwhile prison farm.  They're still clearing away the huge bales of straw from the wheat crop that made this area look like the prairies for a while.

And in high summer the conservation area at Lemoine Point comes into its full richness.  Even though it's heavily used there are lots of places without people, and this early morning I was almost on my own.  This path at the north end nicely mown,

and this path on the east side almost overgrown:

Further along under the trees:

Path 2 is one of my favourites:

Down at the shoreline:

Across the Collins bay and up Collins Creek a little way, right behind some houses, another piece of wilderness...

We're members of the Marine Museum, as all good citizens should be.  Our boys always love to explore the Alexander Henry, and here's what I was photographing while they got wet paint on themselves: