Finding Beauty in the Commonplace


Impression of a Lighthouse

Lighthouse with sun and clouds

This is a test post to help us make sure that the social network connections are working. It may as well be a bit decorative

Fisgard Lighthouse is a very photogenic spot. It’s located between Fort Rodd Hill, a historic site in Colwood, BC and the Esquimalt harbour. It’s frequently in the foreground of  views with ships and boats in the background.



Snow Days Update

Japanese garden

It’s not that frequent for us to have snow closures in Southern Vancouver Island. This past week there was the longest snow closure of schools ever … three days. After the snow stopped falling and parking lots and paths were cleared I went for a bit of a walk to record the largest snowfall since 1996. Meanwhile my little gallery show hasn’t had much traffic. Too many folk shovelling and too few shopping for art. The featured image and the scene below are from Butchart Gardens.

Reflective globe in snowy garden

This bridge below lives in Beacon Hill Park. By the time of this photo, the snow was starting to get a bit scrappy but was still enough to give the idea of a winter scene.

Stone bridge

Part of the purpose of this little post is to test out the newly completed installation of at SiteGround. The move has given a much quicker and more responsive version of the site, but was not without a few frustrating moments along the way.

Upcoming Feature at Village Gallery

BC Ferry at sunrise

I have a small exhibit starting on February 1 at Village Gallery in Sidney. There will be 6 canvases featured for about 6 weeks. I will also have the usual stock of Art Cards available. These vary seasonally.

One of the images that will be showing contains a tree that is no longer there. “Morning Oak” shows the oak tree that stood in the field near East Saanich and Mount Newton. During the big December storm, that tree became a huge pile of rubble. Unfortunate because this tree and its field was a truly iconic piece of Saanich Peninsula beauty. This image shows the tree in the early morning when it was still whole and reasonably healthy.

Oak tree in a field


What is the Real Colour in an Image?

Another post republished from the previous site.

I had a comment from a Facebook viewer a couple of days ago to the effect that she was disappointed in some images I had posted. Her complaint was to the effect that the colour in the images was not the real colour. My reply was that I find exact reproduction to be a boring pursuit in my photography. I create images that come close to matching what was in my imagination at the time I clicked the shutter. Here is a little sequence of stages in one image that illustrates my point.

The featured image is final product image that I might print. But it is far from the original RAW file that my camera recorded. The RAW image looked like the following:

This is what the camera recorded. I think everyone would agree that as it stands it’s a pretty disappointing photo. It is also not a reproduction of the “real” colours that my eye saw.

If the photo had been recorded as a JPG file it would have had the camera’s intervention. It would show what the camera interpreted as the “real” colours and would have probably looked something like this:

This was created by using the automatic basic adjustments in Lightroom. Definitely more lifelike than the RAW image but much bluer in cast and less interesting than my eye saw and much less interesting than what my imagination saw.

The next two images involve some processing to bring things to what my imagination saw.

Because of the backlighting in the photo, I reduced the foreground shadows in order to create some interest in the subject. I warmed the colours somewhat and managed a bit of translucency in the leaves. This matches my imagination of the light flowing through the gaps and highlighting the foreground leaves.

The last step toward my imagination was to filter in a bit of reduced realism.

Trees and Mists

Big rock on a foggy, sandy beach

This post was originally published on my previous site but as I am rebuilding, I thought I’d start here and then gradually add previous posts.

This was my first try at creating a post with the new WordPress editor so I wasn’t sure exactly how things would turn out. As it turns out, I’m not a fan of Gutenberg as it stands so I have gone back to the classic editor for my posts for now.

I have a new feature starting at Village Gallery in Sidney, BC starting on February 1 so this series of posts will highlight some of the candidate images. The featured image comes from the south-west coast of the Island on China Beach. The ocean there is still part of the Strait of Juan de Fuca and you don’t get to the actual Pacific for another few kilometres.

China Beach is a sand beach, but many of the others along that section of coast are composed of stones and present a bit of extra exercise when you walk them.

This particular image, Beach Rock is presented for its moodiness.