Wednesday, March 22, 2023

Blue ice on a dirty road

The plus side of winter
London, ON
March 2023
This photo originally shared on Instagram


Beauty is everywhere.

Even at your feet.

Just look for it.

#ldnont #london #ontario #canada #water #ice #frozen #winter #walkabout #nature #naturephotography #abstract #xray #stilllife #photography #apple #iphone #shotoniphone #photooftheday #instagood #nofilter #nofilterneeded

Tuesday, March 21, 2023

Let the bike season begin

Shaking off winter's dust
London, ON
March 2023
This photo originally shared on Instagram


It was time for the rubber to hit the road.

So yesterday I rolled out the beater bike, topped off the tires, wiped the dust off, and pointed the front wheel away from home.

The mission was identical to other first rides: spin the legs and make sure they still work; shake the bike down and make sure it still works; feel that wondrous feeling of balance you only get by riding a bike.

The data from the Garmin was far from impressive, but I don’t ride for numbers. I ride because once not so long ago I couldn’t walk or speak after my brain had an unplanned reboot.

I ride to prove to myself that I still can. That I can spin my legs and feel the wind on my face and the ripples of the asphalt through my fingertips. That the faster I go, the more balanced I feel. That I’m not just surviving post-stroke, but I’m thriving.

Maybe that’s how I feel about everything I do. Maybe every article I write, interview I do, or talk that I give is a giant middle finger to the universe, another affirmation that I won’t simply let uncontrollable things happen to me without at least trying to control them right back.

Maybe that’s why a Very Bad Thing may not have been Very Bad at all.

Because I used to just ride without giving it much thought. But now it’s an experience to be savored.

Just like every other experience - on a bike or not - since that life-changing moment where it could have all gone away.

#ldnont #london #ontario #canada #cycling #cyclist #cycle #bicycle #pink #bike #cyclinglife #bikelife #firstride #instabike #random #streetphotography #photography #apple #iphone #shotoniphone #photooftheday #instagood #nofilter #nofilterneeded #lifeinthemargins


Related:
On-the-road selfie, October 2022
Back in the saddle, April 2022
The corn grows tall here, September 2021
Wheel meets grass, August 2021
And we ride... April 2021
Back to 2 wheels, March 2020
The first ride, April 2019
Cranked, July 2006

Monday, March 20, 2023

Always look to the sky

There's beauty in turbulence
Deerfield Beach, FL
February 2023
This photo originally shared on Instagram


No matter how stormy things may be down below, there’s always clear blue sky above.

So let’s look up, then.

#deerfield #beach #florida #vacation #offgrid #throwback #travel #atlantic #ocean #waves #surf #green #water #blue #sky #landscape #landscapephotography #nature #naturephotography #photography #gopro #goprohero #adventure #photooftheday #instagood #nofilter #nofilterneeded

Sunday, March 19, 2023

Thanking the invisible brick-layer

Crafted shelter
London, ON
March 2023
This photo originally shared on Instagram


I’m out for a walk with the Wonderschnauzer, and while she’s busy sniffing the half-frozen grass at the foot of this brick wall, I find myself staring at the mason’s handiwork.

I do this often - stare at things while waiting for her to finish up. Or anyone/anything else, for that matter. Some folks scroll Facebook or TikTok to pass the time. I observe.

I like to call these in-between moments, little slivers of time that might otherwise fade from memory because they aren’t monumental.

But the thing is, who decides what is - or is not - monumental? Or otherwise worth remembering? Or somehow worth holding onto.

Years ago, someone built this wall. Brick by brick, using techniques handed down through generations. Today, someone lives within this wall, safe from the world outside, because of a stranger’s expertise.

We all live better lives because strangers came before them and worked to benefit others they’d never meet. The least we can do is try to mark their passage, their contribution, their impact in some small way.

Monumental? There’s only one answer.

#ldnont #london #ontario #canada #building #architecture #architecturephotography #buildingporn #architectureporn #urban #city #brick #perspective #texture #streetphotography #photography #apple #iphone #shotoniphone #photooftheday #instagood #nofilter #nofilterneeded

Saturday, March 18, 2023

Chasing rainbows at the beach

All are welcome
Deerfield Beach, FL
February 2023
This photo originally shared on Instagram


Color is everywhere.

That is all.

For now.

#deerfield #beach #florida #vacation #offgrid #throwback #travel #rainbow #umbrella #atlantic #ocean #gameoftones #landscape #landscapephotography #nature #naturephotography #photography #canon #canonphotography #canon_photography #photooftheday #instagood #nofilter #nofilterneeded

Friday, March 17, 2023

Quoted - taking pics of dead bodies

Easily one of the more jarring stories I’ve commented on - and a reminder to families of the need to include digital assets in end-of-life planning discussions. Uncomfortable? Sure. But so is running facial rec on dead bodies at the funeral home.

CTV News Toronto
Natalie Johnson
March 14, 2023

Green Cay green leaf

Patterns in nature
Boynton Beach, FL
February 2023
This photo originally shared on Instagram


Never doubt what sunlight, water, earth, and nutrients can accomplish.

Remarkable things can happen when all these resources come together for the common good.

But nothing happens at all if these things stay in their respective corners.

Lesson for humanity, perhaps?

#boynton #beach #florida #greencay #wetlands #vacation #offgrid #throwback #travel #nature #naturephotography #landscape #landscapephotography #green #leaf #abstract #photography #apple #iphone #shotoniphone #photooftheday #instagood #nofilter #nofilterneeded

Thursday, March 16, 2023

Airport at rest

Shadows at Pearson
Mississauga, ON
February 2023
This photo originally shared on Instagram


Before we leave the planet for a little while, there’s always enough time to stop and reflect on what’s about to happen.

So we stare out the window and wonder about what will be.

Somehow, this cuts this enormously overwhelming place down to size.

#pearson #international #airport #toronto #ontario #canada #throwback #yyz #travel #travelphotography #travelgram #flight #flying #aviation #avgeek #plane #planes #apple #iphone #shotoniphone #photooftheday #instagood #nofilter #nofilterneeded

Wednesday, March 15, 2023

Quoted - on AI and airplanes

I have many thoughts about AI. And airplanes. And AI and airplanes together.

CTV Toronto
Phil Tsekouras
March 15, 2023

Following along in the woods

Pause to reflect
London, ON
March 2023
This photo originally shared on Instagram


Whenever Planet Earth starts to spin a little too quickly on its axis, a walk in the woods with this little one inevitably slows it back down.

Perhaps I’m misunderstanding the planetary physics thing, but I don’t think this has anything to do with physics in the first place.

All I know is I’ll follow her wherever she wants to take us. Thanks, sweet pup.

#ldnont #london #ontario #medway #valley #forest #canada #calli #callitheschnauzer #dog #dogs #actofdog #schnauzerpuppy #schnauzersofinstagram #schnauzergram #schnauzers #dogsofinstagram #instapuppy #photography #apple #iphone #shotoniphone #photooftheday #─▒nstagood #nofilter #nofilterneeded

Tuesday, March 14, 2023

Return to the dirty orange floor

Yogurt down!
London, ON
March 2023
This photo originally shared on Instagram


We’ve been here before, standing on a brilliantly polished orange floor next to a random grocery product that had an unfortunate encounter with gravity.

Today it’s yogurt. Once upon a time, if memory serves, it was sour cream. And then there was the mouldy cheese incident. Tragedies, all.

For the record, I did not initiate this encounter, but I was only too happy to record the moment. It’s what I do.

The reasons why remain unclear to me, but in a world and a life that don’t always unravel in a linear or logical manner, random pictures of weird things at the grocery store - or wherever - have become a strange source of comfort.

#ldnont #london #ontario #canada #loblaws #grocery #store #yogurt #cleanup #shopping #retail #orange #floor #reflective #random #stilllife #photography #apple #iphone #shotoniphone #photooftheday #instagood #nofilter #nofilterneeded #lifeinthemargins

Monday, March 13, 2023

Frozen X-ray

Always look more closely
London, ON
March 2023
This photo originally shared on Instagram


Please accept my apologies for my recent random-ice-in-the-gutter habit. Sometimes I get into these moods, and I keep returning to the photographic places that bring me joy.

I guess street ice brings me joy. Or maybe it’s dirty gutters. Or both. Whatever.

As you can imagine, there’s a lot of photo-worthy ice in the Great White North. As you probably didn’t imagine, I almost walked right on past this particular stretch of flash-frozen water.

Because it was cracked, messy, imperfect, weird-looking. Not exactly photo-worthy in the conventional sense.

But the longer I looked at it, the more it dawned on me that that was entirely the point. Because if we take pictures only of things (and scenes, and people, and…) that are perfectly formed, perfectly neat, and perfectly conventional-looking, then we miss never seeing the full spectrum of all that surrounds us.

Beauty, as I’ve said so many times, and continue to passionately believe, takes on so many forms. And it shouldn’t be up to others to decide what those forms are.

It should be up to us.

So if you continue to see cracked, imperfect ice (and other scenes, and people, and…) in my feed, I hope you’ll understand why.

They may not be everyone’s definition of photo-worthy. But they are very much my definition of it.

And they bring me joy, in all its cracked, messy, and weird-looking glory.

I hope they bring you joy, too.

#ldnont #london #ontario #canada #water #ice #frozen #winter #walkabout #nature #naturephotography #abstract #xray #stilllife #monochrome #photography #apple #iphone #shotoniphone #photooftheday #instagood #nofilter #nofilterneeded

Sunday, March 12, 2023

Shoot now or forever hold your peace

Jack Frost was here
London, ON
February 2023
This photo originally shared on Instagram


The scene at my feet no longer exists.

After the rising sun crept around the corner and banished the shadows, this entire tiny universe melted almost as quickly as it formed.

Gone. Just like that.

Forgotten.

Save for the single shot I grabbed before heading back in with the dog to start the work day.

I’ve been doing a lot of that lately, stealing moments and scenes that won’t be here if I wait any longer.

I think it’s an allegory of sorts, a hidden message to us that nothing lasts forever. And those time horizons are never as far off as we think. Or wish.

So we stop in gutters and shoot in the now. Because nothing beyond the now is promised to any of us.

It’s as true with crystallized ice as it is with anything else. Or anyone, for that matter.

#ldnont #london #ontario #canada #water #ice #frozen #winter #walkabout #nature #naturephotography #abstract #stilllife #monochrome #photography #apple #iphone #shotoniphone #photooftheday #instagood #nofilter #nofilterneeded

Saturday, March 11, 2023

Where a GoPro meets the surf

In the shallow end of the ocean
Deerfield Beach, FL
February 2023
This photo originally shared on Instagram


Some photos are deliberately planned, precisely composed, thoughtfully crafted.

This is not one of those photos.

This is what happens when you throw your trusty old GoPro into your backpack just before you leave for the airport.

Because it’s kinda small and light and tough. And you feel guilty because you’ve had it for years but have barely used it.

Life, I guess.

So when you finally end up at the beach, you grab it and run like a four-year-old toward the surf.

And you don’t think or compose as much as you point it in a general direction and stab the shutter a few times.

There’s no screen. No real way to control the process. Just randomly dive into a wave and hope you end up with something workable.

Like a four-year-old.

And hold into it tightly so it doesn’t get ripped from your hot little hand.

Also, just like a four-year-old.

And keep repeating the process with every new set of waves.

Again, just like a four-year-old.

Before long, I’ve been knocked over more times than I can count. The shutter count soars above 200, and I honestly have no idea if anything came out.

And yet I’ve probably never had more fun with a camera.

I think I’ll be tossing the GoPro into my backpack a little more often.

My inner four-year-old will be quite pleased.

#deerfield #beach #florida #vacation #offgrid #throwback #travel #atlantic #ocean #waves #surf #water #green #blue #landscape #landscapephotography #nature #naturephotography #photography #gopro #goprohero #adventure #photooftheday #instagood #nofilter #nofilterneeded

Friday, March 10, 2023

Tricolored heron for the win

No, Carmi, you may not take her home
Boynton Beach, FL
February 2023
This photo originally shared on Instagram


Am I a pretty bird?

Certainly.

So, too, are you.

Never doubt that.

#boynton #beach #florida #greencay #wetlands #vacation #offgrid #throwback #travel #bird #birds #flight #flying #color #wildlifephotography #animal #nature #naturephotography #landscape #landscapephotography #photography #canon #canonphotography #canon_photography #instagood #nofilter #nofilterneeded

Related:
One reflective duck, February 2023
Green heron at rest, February 2023
Meet my wingman, May 2020
High-g turn, January 2018

Thursday, March 09, 2023

Flying through the brilliant twilight

Painting the sky
Boca Raton, FL
February 2023
This photo originally shared on Instagram


It’s 6:34 p.m., February 13th, 2023.

22 minutes after the sun has slipped beneath the horizon for the night.

One minute before twilight officially ends.

I’m standing on a hotel deck. Bizarrely shaped clouds paint thick, undulating strips across the still-blazing sub-tropical sky.

Somewhere between here and far away, a single aircraft flies toward an unknown destination.

I hope whoever is on-board is looking out the window.

I hope they’re as moved by the sight of all this as I am.

I hope more of us, in the air or on the ground or wherever, get to stop what we’re doing on occasion so we can be wowed by seemingly trivial moments like these.

It’s just a sunset, some might say. It happens every night. Same old, same old.

But never again like this one. Not with this light, these clouds, and a certain tiny-looking metallic tube filled with strangers making its way through the surreal scene.

Nothing remotely trivial about them.

Whatever the show between here and far away may look like, we only get so many of them while we’re here.

So we look up and ignore the some-might-say folks.

All of this is probably lost on them, anyway.

#bocaraton #florida #vacation #throwback #offgrid #sunset #hotel #pool #nature #naturephotography #landscape #landscapephotography #aviation #flight #photography #canon #canonphotography #canon_photography #photooftheday #instagood #nofilter #nofilterneeded

Related:
Contrails at dusk, November 2022
Electric sky, November 2020
Difficult sunset, June 2019
Reflected sunset, April 2017
Sky on fire, April 2013

Wednesday, March 08, 2023

Sexy Prius at night

Efficiency at the valet stand
Boca Raton, FL
February 2023
This photo originally shared on Instagram


It’s 4:13 a.m. and I’ve parked the rental Prius in the middle of the deserted valet stand in front of our hotel.

We’re going home today, but before we jet off to the airport in Toyota’s once-vaunted vision of hybrid gas-electric transportation, we need to check out, which my wife is doing as I bring the car down from the garage. Teamwork. It’s how we roll.

The lights from the Italian restaurant across the pavestone-covered driveway catch my eye as they reflect off the dirty white flanks of our little car. In the middle of rather toney Boca, it hardly rates along the Lambos and Bentleys that drive endlessly - and loudly - to and from the beach.

But we’ve come to love this car, as it’s served us well in the time we’ve been here, asking for almost nothing as it near-silently took us wherever we needed to go.

Out comes the camera. And as I play with the angles in the middle-of-the-night silence, I think to myself that maybe this isn’t the best use of my time. That a beauty shot of a dirty rental car is probably not an optimal photographic choice. Or a life one, frankly.

But that’s kind of my jam, my strange way of remembering moments that would otherwise slip past us and forever be lost. Hastily taken photos like these serve as markers, and looking back at them brings me right back to the moments they were shot.

Maybe it’s my way of holding onto time. Logically, I know it never stops slipping past us, and no photo can ever stop, or even slow down, that process. But for two minutes in a quiet hotel courtyard far from home, I at least have to try.

I can’t ever not try.

#bocaraton #florida #vacation #throwback #offgrid #travel #hotel #valet #parking #toyota #prius #reflective #abstract #photography #apple #iphone #shotoniphone #photooftheday #instagood #nofilter #nofilterneeded

Related:
Hybrid Theory, May 2016

Tuesday, March 07, 2023

One unique (dead) tree

Nature aplenty
Boynton Beach, FL
February 2023
This photo originally shared on Instagram


Always be the one standing away from the crowd.

#boynton #beach #florida #greencay #wetlands #vacation #offgrid #throwback #travel #forest #tree #trees #nature #naturephotography #landscape #landscapephotography #monichrome #photography #canon #canonpgotography #canon_photography #photooftheday #instagood #nofilter #nofilterneeded

Related:
Struck by lightning? December 2021

Monday, March 06, 2023

The paths we all follow

Empty?
Boynton Beach, FL
February 2023
This photo originally shared on Instagram


We’re all on some kind of journey.

And as we move from here to there, the path we follow may be crowded. Or, as it is here, empty.

But even if we’re the only ones on it, we’re never quite alone.

Because someone built the path. Someone kept it clear. Someone kept it safe. Going further back, someone decided there should be a path in the first place.

Which is my hackneyed way of saying we’re never truly alone.

And the path we take has been shaped by those we both see and do not see.

Perhaps something to keep in mind as the new workweek dawns.

#boynton #beach #florida #greencay #wetlands #vacation #offgrid #throwback #travel #nature #naturephotography #landscape #landscapephotography #boardwalk #geometry #perspective #photography #apple #iphone #shotoniphone #photooftheday #instagood #nofilter #nofilterneeded

Related:
Green lane of death, November 2020

Sunday, March 05, 2023

Chewing her way through life

That guilty look
London, ON
March 2023
This photo originally shared on Instagram


I was a very bad dog today.

Yet I feel not one iota of guilt or shame.

And my hoomans will still love me unconditionally.

Funny how that works.

#ldnont #london #ontario #canada #throwback #calli #callitheschnauzer #dog #dogs #actofdog #schnauzerpuppy #schnauzersofinstagram #schnauzergram #schnauzers #dogsofinstagram #instapuppy #photography #apple #iphone #shotoniphone #photooftheday #─▒nstagood #nofilter #nofilterneeded

Magical. Miniature. Frozen.

Don't blink
London, ON
March 2023
This photo originally shared on Instagram


Just around the corner from our house, this magical miniature frozen scene plays out in a dirty gutter, mere inches away from the tires of a parked car.

The clock is ticking this morning, with work and deadlines waiting at the keyboard back in the home office, and the voices in my head already churning the day’s prose.

The dog doubles back for a closer sniff. She isn’t a writer, so deadlines and the pressures of stringing words together to keep the lights on mean nothing to her.

I give her a few seconds to explore this tiny, temporary world, then gently tug at her leash. She digs in her paws and stares directly into my eyes. Stubborn schnu.

I tell her I don’t have time. That it’s a busy day. As if she really cares.

She digs in harder, then returns to the serious business of sniffing the ice. I tell her, again, in a stronger voice, that we’ve got to get going, that we can come back later.

She ignores me. She sounds like a snorkeling submarine. I feel my face cracking an involuntary smile.

I briefly consider picking her up so we can continue on our way, but something about this spot, this moment, stops me. There’s something about it that’s keeping her here. So I take my smartphone out and join her as she continues to explore the ice with her nose.

By the time I’ve taken a few photos, she’s decided we’re done, and we continue our walk.

A few minutes later, we’re on the return leg back to the house. The car is gone. The ice is crushed, and what’s left is melting fast.

Calli looks at me. Message received. Never wait for later when the fleeting now is beckoning. Always listen to the dog.

#ldnont #london #ontario #canada #onstorm #water #ice #frozen #winter #walkabout #actofdog #nature #naturephotography #abstract #stilllife #monochrome #photography #apple #iPhone #shotoniphone #photooftheday #instagood #nofilter #nofilterneeded

Saturday, March 04, 2023

When winter won't stop

Shaped by the northern winds
London, ON
March 2023
This photo originally shared on Instagram


Scene from a blizzard.

#ldnont #london #ontario #canada #snow #onstorm #frozen #winter #nature #naturephotography #stop #go #sign #photography #apple #iphone #shotoniphone #photooftheday #instagood #nofilter #nofilterneeded

Friday, March 03, 2023

Don't cry over spilled cereal

Unplanned kitchen floor stilllife
London, ON
March 2023
This photo originally shared on Instagram


I call it The Great Cheerios Crash of 2023.

It happened because I was being my typical absent-minded self, trying to multitask at a moment when I should have been using both my hands to put the cereal box back where it belonged.

Instead I kinda shoved it into place and called it good enough. Gravity clearly had other plans, and it did its thing not long after I turned my back.

Now, most normal folks, mortified by their sheer stupidity, would have immediately cleaned the mess up. But I’m far from normal folks, and I just stood there and stared at the spectacle of crashed Cheerios on a ceramic tile floor.

Eventually I thought it might make a fun photo.

The universe may see this as another reminder that gravity always wins. But I prefer to think it’s always good for our mental health to skip a beat and take a photo after we’ve been klutzy in the kitchen.

For the record, the five second rule doesn’t apply here. Probably just as well.

#ldnont #london #ontario #canada #cheerios #cereal #breakfast #food #foodporn #random #kitchen #stilllife #photography #apple #iphone #shotoniphone #photooftheday #instagood #nofilter #nofilterneeded

Thursday, March 02, 2023

The guy who took on the ocean

Wind and waves
Deerfield Beach, FL
February 2023
This photo originally shared on Instagram


Far away in the pounding surf, a single man stands firm against the wind and the waves.

From where I’m standing, he’s little more than a speck, a seemingly inconsequential presence amid the enormity of the ocean’s edge. Yet I’m struck by his defiance, by the way he stands square against the onslaught, barely moving as each swell sweeps directly into him.

I take a single shot from my safe distance, then call it a day.

Only later do I look more closely at the resulting photo and realize he isn’t the only one in-frame. In fact, I’ve somehow captured countless other folks holding their own amid the chaotic place where land meets sea.

All I had to do was look a little more closely to see the bigger picture.

All I had to do was take the time to ponder the things that often reveal themselves on their own timeline.

All I needed was a little patience.

#deerfield #beach #florida #vacation #offgrid #throwback #travel #atlantic #ocean #waves #mist #surf #green #blue #landscape #landscapephotography #nature #naturephotography #photography #canon #canonphotography #canon_photography #photooftheday #instagood #nofilter #nofilterneeded

Wednesday, March 01, 2023

Two birds find the high ground

I'll always have your back
Boynton Beach, FL
February 2023
This photo originally shared on Instagram


There are days when you just want to find a quiet spot away from it all and hang out with your best friend.

I’m going to guess that today might be such a day.

Or any day, really.

These two ibises seem to have figured it out, don’t they?

#boynton #beach #florida #greencay #wetlands #vacation #offgrid #throwback #travel #bird #birds #egret #flight #flying #wildlifephotography #animal #nature #naturephotography #landscape #landscapephotography #photography #canon #canonpgotography #canon_photography #photooftheday #instagood #nofilter #nofilterneeded

Tuesday, February 28, 2023

One reflective duck

Every bird has two sides
Boynton Beach, FL
February 2023
This photo originally shared on Instagram


Even ducks can have their reflective moments.

Maybe we should follow their lead.

#boynton #beach #florida #greencay #wetlands #vacation #offgrid #throwback #travel #bird #birds #duck #flight #flying #color #reflection #wildlifephotography #animal #nature #naturephotography #landscape #landscapephotography #photography #apple #iphone #shotoniphone #photooftheday #instagood #nofilter #nofilterneeded

Monday, February 27, 2023

Green heron at rest

Sure, I'll pose for you
Boynton Beach, FL
February 2023
This photo originally shared on Instagram


Dear photographers,

If you’re going to come to my wetlands and take photos of me, please make sure you get me from my good side.

Thank you,

Pretty Bird
Green Cay Wetlands
Boynton Beach, FL

#boynton #beach #florida #greencay #wetlands #vacation #offgrid #throwback #travel #bird #birds #flight #flying #color #wildlifephotography #animal #nature #naturephotography #landscape #landscapephotography #photography #canonphotography #canon_photography #photooftheday #instagood #nofilter #nofilterneeded

Sunday, February 26, 2023

Surf's no longer up

After the final set
Boca Raton, FL
February 2023
This photo originally shared on Instagram


As the evening shadows deepen and the waves subside, two surfers find their way home across the well-travelled sand.

The moment may seem inconsequential. But to those who cherish life here on this thin edge of the planet, it is rich with meaning and tone.

#bocaraton #beach #florida #vacation #offgrid #throwback #travel #atlantic #ocean #surf #surfer #sand #nature #naturephotography #photography #apple #iphone #shotoniphone #photooftheday #instagood #nofilter #nofilterneeded

Saturday, February 25, 2023

Shadowy handholding selfie

Connected
Boca Raton, FL
February 2023
This photo originally shared on Instagram


I’m in a handholding mood. Thanks for bearing with me.

This shadowy selfie of me and my lovely wife is a common sight wherever we go. We’re handholders, and her hand always seems to silently find mine. Or mine hers.

It may seem like a trivial detail to some, but in reality it’s anything but trivial. I can’t quite put words around it, but I wish more people could appreciate the comfort of an outstretched hand, and the wordless conversations that flow between us when we connect.

Planet Earth might be a kinder place if everyone had the chance.

For now, though, I’ll count myself lucky.

#bocaraton #florida #vacation #offgrid #throwback #travel #walkabout #shadow #selfie #sunset #random #spontaneous #street #streetphotography #photography #apple #iphone #shotoniphone #photooftheday #instagood #nofilter #nofilterneeded

Related:

Not-so-newlyweds. Still holding hands.

Together forever
Deerfield Beach, FL
February 2023
This photo originally shared on Instagram


A few years back, I was walking this very same beachside sidewalk when I came across a newlywed couple.

They kindly consented to a fast picture before the tuxedoed groom and magazine-worthy bride disappeared around the corner. To this day I still think of them, and hope this moment was just the foundation of a happy life for them.

The resulting photo has become not only one of my favourite images, but also a warmly remembered photographic moment, and a reminder to me of why I so enjoy street photography.

So imagine my pleasant surprise when I noticed another lovely couple strolling along the sand-flecked pavers. It was the hand-holding that grabbed my attention. Such a simple thing on one level, and such a profound gesture on another.

These two are clearly on the opposite end of the relationship spectrum, and the tux and wedding dress are probably stored in dusty boxes in their attic. Yet the poignancy of their intertwined hands is no less profound.

Because we all deserve to find someone who will hold our hand.

At any age.

Anytime.

Anywhere.

Wordlessly.

#deerfield #beach #florida #vacation #offgrid #throwback #travel #walkabout #strangers #random #spontaneous #street #streetphotography #photography #apple #iphone #shotoniphone #photooftheday #instagood #nofilter #nofilterneeded

Friday, February 24, 2023

Where we leave the Nikon at home

Game of tones
Deerfield Beach, FL
February 2023
This photo originally shared on Instagram


I did a once-unthinkable thing before our recent trip south: I left the so-called “good” camera at home.

As much as I love shooting with it, I’m tired of trips being dominated by the equipment I carry. Or of worrying about it while we’re at the beach. Or of the pain I feel after dragging it everywhere all day because it’s too valuable to leave back in the hotel.

So the Nikon stayed home. In its place, I had my smartphone and a small point-and-shoot.

Were there moments when I wished I had the full-on kit with me? Sure. Chasing birds around the beach and tracking waves, for example, were, um, a lot different with the pared down equipment. Not gonna lie: a DSLR would have been a much more flexible photographic tool.

But vacations should be about rest, not schlepping your stuff around in a giant bag. And I regret taking all these years to figure that out. Probably should apologize to my wife right about now.

Long ago, I learned - but perhaps didn’t fully appreciate - that the best camera is the one you have with you. So I shifted my brain a bit and embraced the moment. The smartphone lacks the reach, while the point-and-shoot lacks the speed. But I grew up using cameras with fractions of their capabilities, so it was time to focus on the craft and not on the hardware.

I think this shift made me a better photographer. No longer was I bludgeoning the scene with a massive piece of photographic technology. I was simply telling a simple story with what I happened to have.

More importantly, though, I think - hope? - this shift made me a better travel partner. I was far more in tune with the memories we made along the way. I stopped focusing on capturing moments, and simply enjoyed them. Photography became a sideline to the experience instead of its centrepiece.

There was one point during a visit to a nearby wetland preserve that I felt a little outgunned. I walked past these pros with massive camouflage-covered lenses probably worth more than my car. Suddenly my smartphone and point-and-shoot felt…small.

But photography isn’t about what’s in your hand - or how your specs measure up. It’s about the stories you tell, and the memories you make along the way. I wish I had learned this lesson earlier.

#deerfield #beach #florida #vacation #offgrid #throwback #travel #atlantic #ocean #green #blue #gameoftones #waves #landscape #landscapephotography #nature #naturephotography #photography #canon #canonphotography #canon_photography #photooftheday #instagood #nofilter #nofilterneeded

The five-tern staredown

Why, hello there
Deerfield Beach. FL
February 2023
This photo originally shared on Instagram


I’m pretty sure they were telling me to get lost.

#deerfield #beach #florida #vacation #offgrid #throwback #travel #atlantic #ocean #bird #birds #tern #terns #flight #flying #wildlifephotography #animal #nature #naturephotography #photography #apple #iphone #shotoniphone #photooftheday #instagood #nofilter #nofilterneeded

Thursday, February 23, 2023

Henrietta on ice

Chilling
London, ON
February 2023
This photo originally shared on Instagram


News flash: winter is back with a bit of a vengeance.

Another news flash: this is Canada. Why is this a surprise to anyone?

Enjoy it if you can. And please stay safe.

#ldnont #london #ontario #canada #onstorm #water #ice #frozen #winter #henrietta #honda #red #car #carporn #automotive #driveway #photography #nature #naturephotography #photography #apple #iPhone #shotoniphone #photooftheday #instagood #nofilter #nofilterneeded

Wednesday, February 22, 2023

Icy duality

Tiny, temporary world
London, ON
February 2023
This photo originally shared on Instagram


Not a happy day in Canadastan, as an incoming ice storm dominates the agenda and threatens the lives of millions.

Yet this tiny frozen scene, discovered this past Monday, betrays the duality of nature. Ice can shut down a country and endanger its people - or it can put on a show of benign miniaturized wonder before disappearing under a rising sun.

Two ways to look at ice. Two - or I’m guessing more - ways to look at just about anything else.

Perhaps something to keep in mind as the storm moves in.

Either way, wherever you are, please stay safe.

#ldnont #london #ontario #canada #onstorm #water #ice #frozen #winter #walkabout #nature #naturephotography #abstract #stilllife #photography #apple #iPhone #shotoniphone #photooftheday #instagood #nofilter #nofilterneeded

Tuesday, February 21, 2023

A tern turns into the wind

Where to next?
Deerfield Beach, FL
February 2023
This photo originally shared on Instagram


On a windy day at the edge of the planet, a single tern wheels in the roiled air.

Despite Mother Nature’s efforts to swat her out of the sky, she stretches out her sinuous wings and turns the threatening atmosphere into life-sustaining lift.

I could watch this all day. Not just the flying, but the display of tenacity amid tension, the instinctive need to stay aloft amid overwhelming adversity.

Smart bird. We could learn from her.

#deerfield #beach #florida #vacation #offgrid #throwback #travel #atlantic #ocean #bird #birds #tern #gull #seagull #flight #flying #azure #blue #sky #wildlifephotography #animal #nature #naturephotography #photography #apple #iphone #shotoniphone #photooftheday #instagood #nofilter #nofilterneeded

Monday, February 20, 2023

Birds of a together feather

Formation flight
Deerfield Beach, FL
February 2023
This photo originally shared on Instagram


It’s Family Day in Ontario, where the government gives us the day off so we can hang with our favourite peeps.

It’s made me reflect on the definition of family, and whether we appreciate its significance as much as we should.

A few days back, I stood on a beach and watched these half-dozen birds float overhead. A few things occurred to me as I took in the starkly beautiful scene:
  • They work together, even amid strong, shifting winds.
  • They help each other, reducing resistance for those behind, and watching out for those ahead.
  • They move only as fast as their slowest member.
  • They may be genetically related. Or not. Family takes many forms. Family can be those you choose to be - or fly - with.
  • They may bicker here and there over a random potato chip in the sand, but soon enough they figure it out and get back to the business of surviving and thriving.
As my feet sank into the wet sand underneath the pounding surf, I saw these gulls not as bird brains to be dismissed, but as examples we’d do well to follow.

They’ve already figured it out. So can we.

Happy Family Day wherever you are. Because we all need family in some form, and our lives are enriched because of it.

#deerfield #beach #florida #familyday #vacation #offgrid #travel #atlantic #ocean #bird #birds #gull #seagull #flight #flying #azure #blue #sky #wildlifephotography #animal #nature #naturephotography #photography #apple #iphone #shotoniphone #photooftheday #instagood #nofilter #nofilterneeded

Sunday, February 19, 2023

Reflecting pool, fading light

Mirror, mirror...
Boca Raton, FL
February 2023
This photo originally shared on Instagram


Just before the sun disappears for the night, Mother Nature pulls out a special palette of oranges and salmons and paints the planet in shades that are more felt than seen.

Sadly, nobody here seems to want to go for a swim at dusk, so the place is deserted.

Which, on reflection, makes it infinitely easier to have a little fun with the camera before the light fades for good. Silence is indeed golden. Or whatever other colors Planet Earth decides to pull out for this fleeting show.

Soon it’ll be dark, but no one ever said wow moments lasted forever.

So we move fast before this is just a memory.

#bocaraton #florida #vacation #offgrid #travel #swim #swimming #hotel #pool #reflective #sunset #geometry #abstract #blue #water #photography #apple #iphone #shotoniphone #photooftheday #instagood #nofilter #nofilterneeded

Saturday, February 18, 2023

When infinity...isn't

Geometry under a southern sun
Boca Raton, FL
February 2023
This photo originally shared on Instagram


The bad news: infinity pools don’t actually go to infinity. As we can see here, they eventually reach a definitive limit.

The good news: the geometry is rather fun to play with.

Lesson learned: ignore the marketing. Then roll up your sleeves and make the story work for you. There are no rules.

#bocaraton #florida #vacation #offgrid #travel #swim #swimming #hotel #pool #geometry #abstract #blue #water #photography #apple #iphone #shotoniphone #photooftheday #instagood #nofilter #nofilterneeded

Friday, February 17, 2023

In the shallow end of the ocean...

Another world, just below
Deerfield Beach, FL
February 2023
This photo originally shared on Instagram


In the shallow end of the ocean, sunlight scatters in ways that create colors and textures and tones that don’t exist anywhere else.

In the shallow end of the ocean, the winds shape the water’s surface, endlessly creating new lenses through which we can get a glimpse.

In the shallow end of the ocean, waves end their journey of thousands of miles by crashing into the beach. Whether that’s a glorious or inglorious ending is up for debate.

In the shallow end of the ocean, life is created and lost in a cycle we call never-ending, but isn’t really.

In the shallow end of the ocean, we get to visit on occasion, but it’s clear we don’t belong here.

Still, in the shallow end of the ocean, we’re welcome to peer in from well above and wonder about all the things we can only imagine are playing out beneath the mysterious waves.

#deerfield #beach #florida #vacation #offgrid #travel #atlantic #ocean #pier #abstract #landscape #landscapephotography #nature #naturephotography #green #teal #blue #water #photography #apple #iphone #shotoniphone #photooftheday #instagood #nofilter #nofilterneeded

Thursday, February 16, 2023

One London Place greets the day

Reflecting the morning sky
London, ON
January 2018
This photo originally shared on Instagram


My brain often thinks about trivial things, like the weird realities of mirrored glass.

It has no stories of its own to tell. Instead, it reflects the stories of whatever and whoever is around it.

Precisely how it looks or what we see in it is entirely dependent on where we happen to be standing, what time of day it is, and what may or may not be floating nearby.

It has no control over any of this. Its fate depends on the random actions of everything around it.

Its appearance can be brilliantly spectacular, boring to the point of invisibility, or anything in between. It can tell a wide spectrum of stories, some of which will hold our rapt attention, and others which will never be heard.

During the day, outsiders can’t see in, but insiders can see out. Turn the lights on at night and all bets are off.

I could probably stand on the sidewalk and stare at these straight-cut staples of modern architecture all day - and night - but eventually I’ve got to move along and get on with my day.

I can always come back at another time, on another day, and this otherwise featureless surface will have another story to tell. I’m sure the silent neighbors around it won’t let it down.

#ldnont #london #ontario #canada #onelondonplace #building #architecture #architecturephotography #buildingporn #architectureporn #urban #downtown #city #streetphotography #glass #mirror #reflective #sunrise #photography #nikon #nikonphotography #nikon_photography #photooftheday #instagood #nofilter #nofilterneeded

Wednesday, February 15, 2023

Looking up. Looking back.

Old meets new
London, ON
September 2022
This photo originally shared on Instagram


I have this weird habit that involves walking around neighborhoods and staring up at the architecture.

I’m not terribly tall, so I’m usually looking up at stuff, anyway.

Anyway, over the years it’s become a bit of a recurring theme with me, a touchstone in my photographic archives that reminds me of where I’ve been and what I’ve seen along the way.

It also freezes specific days in memory. Like this one from last September, where I had dropped our daughter off, as parents do, and was just far enough away from home that it made sense to stay out while I waited for her.

So I explored Dundas Street, London’s onetime retail mecca that is now in the throes of too many decades of decline and neglect. In between the homeless camps and discarded needles, old buildings - some restored, most awaiting their next chapter - stood, historically defiant, against the brilliant blue sky.

High overhead, fighter jets performing at the airshow flew efficient orbits through the wispy clouds as they waited their turn at show centre. On the sidewalk, the occasional pedestrian stared into the sky to see what was causing all that racket.

In other words, an ordinary day in an ordinary place. But still one worth holding onto in some way.

They all are, really. We just have to look up.

#ldnont #london #ontario #canada #throwback #blue #sky #weather #wx #cloud #building #architecture #architecturephotography #buildingporn #architectureporn #urban #city #dundas #street #walkabout #streetphotography #photography #apple #iphone #shotoniphone #photooftheday #instagood #nofilter #nofilterneeded