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Black (& White) Friday: Spotlight on Winners

I took this image a loooong time ago and processed it when I first got into Lightroom, but I’ve always liked the way the sun’s rays bleed across the front of the building. I think it was a happy accident because at that time I didn’t shoot with a lens hood and didn’t know about it’s significance.

I can’t really pinpoint what it is that I like about this shot, but I definitely love the detail in these old buildings. It would be a dream to be able to go around the city with a wide angle lens, shooting the interior and exterior of old buildings like these… minus the department store retrofits.

spotlite on winners

Running with Giants

Rideau Canal

The weather this autumn has been nothing short of spectacular. Sure, there have been a few cold nights and rainy days, but there has been so many gorgeous days over the past couple of weeks that I couldn’t help buckling the boys in our bike trailer and hitting the open trails. I’ve seen people out running and walking; wearing shorts and t-shirts; and laughing and playing, but I know that the end will come soon enough and this lovely city will be blanketed in a THICK layer of snow.

I took this shot while I was out with my younger son exploring the wildlife along the Rideau Canal. Runners and cyclists always use the path along the edge of the Canal, and I couldn’t help by notice how our tiny frames put the whole scene in perspective as we walked, ran, and cycled among the giant trees. You can just make out the lone runner in the centre of frame, and I think that that was what drew me to the scene.

 

Red Door Portraits

“Find a nice background and wait for the images to come to you.”

It’s advice I often give when I talk to others about street photography, but rarely practice myself. Shooting this way lets you practice street photography, composition, lighting, or pairing contrasting images without the burden of feeling like you’re being watched by passers-by.

Here is a sample taken from a bunch of shots I took outside of Massey Hall in Toronto. My original intent was to gather various shots of the outside of the building, but then I thought it’d be fun to candidly capture people passing by, while using the venue’s historic red doors as the backdrop.

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Weekly Photo Challenge: Texture in Street Photography

I’m not sure how it happened, but somehow I managed to build my blog on a solid foundation of street photography. Honestly, I just stumbled into it. I bought a new camera and wanted to use it. I wanted to learn how to get myself out of “P” Mode and create my own images. I loved people watching, I loved walking, and I loved taking pictures, so street photography just seemed like a natural fit.

3 - ditch the zoomIt’s hard to pinpoint exactly what it is that draws me in so deeply, but perhaps it’s the multi-layered textures of the street. You see, when I’m out walking or cycling through the streets, I’m drawn to the sights, sounds, and smells that surround me. One layer that grabs my attention above all else is colour. For me, there’s nothing better than walking the streets after the rain has fallen, while the sky is still grey, and while the streets still glisten with the yet to be absorbed rain droplets. These are the times when colours erupt into their most beautiful and daring. Perhaps it’s the girl on the corner holding red balloons, or a display of lanterns outside one of the shops. _DSC0312

 

 

Another layer of street photography that engulfs me so deeply is the rich amount of historical architecture that surrounds us. I have learned so much about the history of Toronto by photographing many of it’s 19th and early 20th century buildings, that I have gained a new appreciation and respect for Canada’s greatest city, and how Canadians have lived for more than one hundred years. harbour 60

 

But then there are the little things, the details that catch my eye, but might have gone unnoticed by the hundred people that passed before me. A shattered store front glass door that when looked at closely, reveals the shatter lines follow the leading lines of the street it reflects; the fashion details you can only find in a big city such as strategically chosen coloured socks, or a hand made ring constructed out of gears and bits and bobs of watches; chipped paint on a century-old church door; the beauty of dusk and the soft glow of lights in the office towers that overlook the organized chaos of evening commuters; or a lonely oak leaf resting on some old railroad ties.

But my favorite layer of all is the people. People are what make up the lifeblood of the streets and they are the most important texture layer in my street photography stew. I love watching people – how they stand, how they move when they are alone or with other people, and how they interact. In one city, you’ll find that people look different depending on where they reside, where they live and work. It’s an interesting analysis on society.