AWOKEN BY THE SMELL OF RAIN

 

Being a heavy sleeper has its advantages when the Professor and our pup get up pre-dawn for their daily constitutional but lately it has been the sound of thunder and sudden torrential downpours rather than any absence of warm bodies in bed that have signalled to my unconsciousness that another day has begun. This unusually cool spell has meant we have been lucky enough to be able to open the windows at night and this morning’s reveille of raindrops was a sweetly clean yet heady fragrance reminiscent of simpler times.

SoMe Sky

some sky

I’ve run across alot of people recently who are just worn down, exhausted and overwhelmed by information and social media. Is disconnection and a realignment of hands-on priorities the solution or just a few days in a warm climate dipping our toes in the surf? A change is as good as a rest…

Gimme Shelter

Hope the roof on this baby wasn’t built by the same contractor who installed the one on the Olympic Stadium :laughing:
I really wish local government would get with the program and accept that not all tourists to our fair city are francophone: Such a great PS installation should at least be bilingual and then everyone could go home and say they saw the world’s largest :poop: and not wonder what that was all about.

Life imitates Art imitates Art imitates Life

gazoo graffiti

I’m always fascinated by the elements that make up some of the larger murals splashed around Montreal. In this three-story high piece, there’s a very literate and informed conversation going on between artist and viewer but I’m not actually sure how many people are picking up the thread, how many passers-by are aware of the references (age, interest and culture probably being a deciding factor) and how such iconic images are woven together in a greater commentary.

Walk on by or stop and think about it for awhile.

Carrying on a fine Tradition

gourd

On a recent arrival home from some time away, one of the first things I noticed was an arrangement of decorative seasonal gourds on the dining room table. Miss Z was following in my footsteps, discovering the joys of the local market and had brought home a colourful harvest for the family to share. Each one is unique and riotous in its markings, much like our tribe, and worthy of joining the painterly edits that I have been amassing over the last few years.

This particular edit brought to mind a post about the etiquette of food photography where the ongoing conversations in the comments had led to much reflection on how I wound up with so many shots of ordinary fruit and veg in my own archives.

Twenty odd years ago as my son and I were zooming up a street, I saw a kid outside of his garage selling large canvases of close-ups of the most magnificent mangoes and plums, odd veg and seafood in the most brilliant colours and rendered in an energetic impressionist style. It was just that flash of something extraordinary that made me pull up the car and go and have a look – I should have bought them right then and there, but could ill afford it and so I went to visit his other works in a few cafes and a gallery, later looked for his stuff online, googled them years after and always regretted not having deprived myself of something else to have been able to look upon that luscious fruit every day.

It marked me in much the same way that Wayne Thiebaud had an influence on how I see the ordinary. It is that driving need to tell the story of the very basic stuff of life, the things that go unnoticed, the colours and shapes we ignore in the busyness of it all – that is what keeps me taking food photos. Photography is all about the way we transform what we see so that we can give others a glimpse and get them thinking, remembering, wondering, engaging and even taking part in keeping the creative process dynamic.

So yes, I do take pictures of my food: I can revel in them at will, remember exactly what I was thinking or doing, ascribe circumstance or tradition, have them stand out as markers in that timeline of life. They are mine… and now they are yours.

Out of the Earth comes my Pleasure

turnips

An acquaintance has a keen eye for produce (among other things) and has been kind enough to encourage my painterly treatment of his photographs. What thrills me the most is that we seem to see the natural in much the same way. This bounty of turnips could not be any more glorious for their story of early mornings, simpler times, hands pulling the harvest from the dark fragrant soil to send to market. When the divine took a brush to this humble vegetable, it was for us to look upon such things with renewed wonder and breathe in with gratitude the overlooked beauty that surrounds us.

Going Nuts

nuts

Walking a lovely tree-lined avenue can be a dangerous proposition these days. The squirrels have no appetite for these thorny projectiles and perch high in the branches laughing while pedestrians jump at narrow misses. The ravens, however, are thrilled and gather to pick through the debris for choice bits: those they cannot crack in their bills are dropped from a height to shatter against the sidewalks. I suspect they choose their moments.

Harvest

painterly mushrooms, lettuce and cabbage

An acquaintance’s photograph of some veg from their garden a few weeks back got the foodie in me salivating for a collaboration. He was kind enough to agree – just wish I had been able to get a taste of the resulting stew.

Share something tasty with someone you love – even better, share with a stranger.

Wish you were Here

airplane wing over rockies

Winging my way west, this is the first time I’ve noticed the gentle curve of the horizon quite this way. Can’t help but think of all the pioneers and prospectors, settlers and safe-haven seekers, making their way across this vast wasteland of rock and ice more than a century ago. Their strong spirit sings clear no matter how often I gaze down upon this vista.