(mostly) daily photoblog

Posts tagged “Reflection

What did we do before lcd screens on cameras?

Jak Photo Walk 1I love this photo.  The person on the left took a photo of the two men.  After taking the photo, she showed them the photo and they all gathered around her LCD screen to look at the photo that had just been taken.

When I first started taking photographs, I learned with a Pentax K1000 film SLR.  There was no instant feedback.  In fact, if I didn’t shoot an entire roll of film in a day, it could be a week or longer before I knew whether I had taken any good photos.  Now that we have instant feedback, we take a photo and then check to see how it turned out and often decide immediately whether it is worth keeping.

An unintended side effect, however, is that we gather around our cameras to see how good, or not good, we looked in the photo.  Community built on LCD screens?  Maybe.

 


Join me in some meditation…

buddha

It’s not really fair.  Buddha, above, has an advantage in the meditation game:  he’s a statue.

I’ve tried it.  I’ve tried finding a still, small, quiet space in the world to sit still, quietly, and make myself small in the grand scheme of the world.  I’ve tried praying, meditating, contemplating, but I have a great deal of difficulty.  I can’t shut off me.  If I were concrete, if I had been formed somewhere by an artisan or a concrete mold and there were no thoughts going on inside my head, I might be better at sitting still and finding a quiet place to think about life, about the things that really matter.

Either way, Buddha always has the advantage.

 


WordPress Photo Challenge: Reflections

reflection

The technique here is to turn the camera upside-down and rest the bottom of the camera on the ceiling of the vehicle in which you’re riding.  The camera is inverted.  Your camera will turn everything back right-side-up afterwards.

This way, I always get the ceiling reflection and the people in the train.

This was shot on an airport transfer train of the Kuala Lumpur International Airport.


The boys club

 

I remember being this age.  I thought I knew everything.  I knew that I knew more than everyone else, at least.  I felt like the world was waiting for me.  My boys, my friends, were the only thing that was important to me.

Man…I knew nothing back then.


Blue Sky

I never thought I’d miss the sky.  I grew up in rural Saskatchewan, and I was never short of blue sky.  Even in the winters, we’d have more hours of clear, cold blue sky than most people get in a really nice summer.  When I moved to British Columbia, the Vancouver area, I gave up a lot of that blue sky.  But when it wasn’t raining, the sky was blue.  Azure.  At times, almost sapphire.

Then I moved to Jakarta.  There are moments when the sky is blue.  Sometimes, when I’m outside swimming I can look up and see a little spot of blue, between the gray-brown-white-ish clouds.  The geography of Jakarta lends itself to a sort of mixing bowl effect.  When you add together the ingredients of twenty-some million people, millions of cars and motorcycles, a lack of good sanitation, and a low-lying city surrounded by hills, you get a nearly complete lack of blue sky.

When I visited Palu, there were kilometers in every direction of blue sky.  Spectacular.  Totally amazing.  I miss blue sky.


Photo Friday: Reflected

Ooh, it’s nearly the end of Friday here, but it’s just beginning to be Friday where so many of my friends and family live.  For Photo Friday, here’s a little reflection from my life.


Hmm…flower.

I’m stuck not knowing how to react to the city in which I live.  I walk, daily, past people who subsist on very little.  They live on 1 000 000 Rupiah (that’s $100 US approximately) a month, sometimes less, sometimes more.  I walk past open sewers that are sometimes smelly and sometimes revolting.  I walk past mansions that exist next to shacks.  Mercedes driving past men pulling home-made carts.

What does all of this have to do with a flower?  There are no parks but lots and lots of green.  There is asphalt and trees, and because it’s always summer (or seemingly) the blossoms on trees and vines bloom and die all the time.  I’ve been here a month and I’d almost gotten used to it.  Leaves fall off trees all the time, but it’s never Autumn.  I wonder if I’ll get used to all of it.  I hope not.  I hope that I’ll always be shocked, saddened, enraged, curious, and hopeful.


The paradox…

…of Jakarta is that there is incredible wealth and abject poverty.  There are designer clothing stores and a community of people who live in the garbage dump (one of many, I’m sure).  The difference, as I have been noting many differences between life here and “home” in North America, is that there is no way to escape the paradox of this city.

I was having this discussion with some of my colleagues (Chris, Glenn, Trent – I’m talking about you) and we talked about how easy it is, in the “developed world” to see poverty and those living in it, and then escape back to the suburb or neighborhood or gated community of your choice and forget what was just seen.  Here, in Jakarta, there is no escape.  The wealth lives next to the poverty.  The highly fortunate live behind a wall that is built against the open lot in which people barely subsist.  The Rolls Royce (and yes, there was one that passed me on my walk home from work last Thursday) drives right past the flower sellers and “Ayam Bakar” merchants.  They all live in the same place.

Purposeful ignorance is the only way to avoid seeing those who, by chance, were born into a life of poverty.  That’s the paradox of the city in which I live.


Hotel in the pond

Yeah, I’ve got nothing to go with that title.  There’s just a hotel…and a pond…and a reflection of the hotel in the pond.  So…do you like it?


Hi. Have a seat. Let’s talk.

So, um…I’m a little overwhelmed at the moment.  Between selling my house and making plans to move to Indonesia and trying to finish out the year at my school, I’m starting to feel as though my photoblog is becoming homework.

I didn’t ever want this to become an onerous task.  Until recently, this blog has been nothing but a joy.  Now…well, now I think I need to ease up a little on the daily blog posts.  In fact, I think I’m going to switch over to a weekly post.  Once a week.  Fridays I think.

I hope you’ll bear with me.  I hope you’ll patiently wait out this period.  When everything settles down here, I’ll start posting on a daily basis again.

Thanks.


Upon reflection…Fun!

Okay, so here’s a photo of a little parking lot carnival that just finished up this weekend in Chilliwack.  It was small, but it looked like everyone was having fun.  What I liked was that it afforded me some fun shots without having to drive out to Vancouver.

The reflection is off the roof of my car (which I had just washed earlier that day).  I’d love to say that I planned this, but I noticed it by accident as I was shooting other photos.  Fortuitous accidents…gotta love them.


You’re awesome!

Good morning.  I hope you have a great day.

Oh…and have a I told you that you’re AWESOME?  If not, you’re AWESOME!


Kind of obsessed…

…with black and white right now.

Maybe I’m wishing that the world would present more obvious choices – seeing the world in black and white, as it were.


WordPress Photo Challenge: Ready

There’s nothing like a bit of rest and reflection to get ready.  I don’t know for what you need to get ready, but this would be a pretty nice place to rest and reflect.

Oh, and the reflecting?  There was no pun intended.


WordPress Photo Challenge: Simple

Nothing simpler than a photo of a reflection.


The reflection is black and white

I picked out a photo that I shot a while ago, but, given the black and white treatment, it takes on a timeless quality.

Well, that’s what I think.  What do you think?


My lake home…I wish…or not.

Actually, I’m not sure I wish I had one of these “cabins”.  I have a tough enough time keeping up my yard and house that I live in, let alone trying to keep up a home away from home.  The way my mind works, if I own a house at the lake, I’m going to live in that house.  If I own a house in the suburbs (I do), then I’m going to live in that house.  I’ve never really understood the “need” to have two houses.

Either way, these lake houses made a nice photo, so I’m just going to enjoy view.


Grace…maybe.

I’m not sure how I missed this photo, but back in October I had the privilege of taking forty students to Vancouver to the Writer’s Festival.  While there, I witnessed an amazing poet:  Zaccheus Jackson.  He was born an addict, a product of Canada’s foster child program, a former addict and convict and now a voice for taking life for what it is:  amazing.  Not beautiful all the time.  Not painless.

His poems were brilliant if not manic and restless.  There was a graceful, elegant quality to his words, even as he spits them out, rapid-fire.  He spoke truths of a life that none of my students had witnessed before.  One of his poems pointed to the grace of an eagle, only to be surprised by the graceful eagle’s mistake of trying to take on more than it should have.  The poem is here, but a short word of warning:  it has some inappropriate language.

What he speaks of is wings.  What he lives is a life that has been offered grace, for which he is grateful.


How strong is your inner voice?

Very similar to a photo I posted last week, I know, but it’s Sunday and I’m quite enjoying a lazy day.  The Grey Cup is on, I made a coffee cake with my daughter, my son made a snow globe with my wife and there’s nothing else on the agenda…

Um…what about that marking and planning you should do…

Shut up, conscience.  The last thing I need is you telling me what to do.  I feel a little “Assassin’s Creed” calling me.

Um…or maybe work out next week’s classes.

I’ve got next week planned.  I’ll write it down yet tonight.

No, you won’t.  But you should.

Okay.  Fine.  I’ll go do some work…right after I eat some coffee cake.  Ha!  Take that, inner voice.


Why is it that a day off is more exhausting than a day at work?

Seriously.  Is it because I’ve been holding on all week, only to crash on a full day away from work?

Is it because driving from the library to Future Shop to the produce market to the supermarket is inherently tiring?

Is it that I have much more time to over-think things to the point of exhaustion?

Here’s a photo that has nothing to do with what I’ve written.  Ha!  Take that, logical sequences of thought.


Lake walk in full color.

I’ve been at home due to illness for the last two days.  Finally, this afternoon, I felt well enough to go for a walk.  We live about five minutes from Cultus Lake and I like taking walks at this lake in the fall.  There are few tourists, even fewer boaters and just lovely colors and peaceful water.

If you think it’s pretty, come on over.  I’ll take you for a walk that’ll knock your senses for a loop.


Ducks? Get out of the way, ducks.

I took this shot on my way home last week.  It’s the Sumas River.  I drive alongside it most of the way home.

I thought I had this beautiful shot of the willows’ reflections in the water.  It looked great in the camera’s LCD.  I got home, downloaded it and found that there were two ducks mucking up the perfect reflections.

Thanks a lot, ducks.  I think it turned out alright, even with the water-“foul”.

 

 


Reflections after a snow day

I like the way things reflected in water have a surreal quality to them.  Like we’re peering through the looking glass and on the other side is our world, only not quite.

Yesterday was a snow day, but today was a slush day.  Welcome to the Fraser Valley of British Columbia.  One day, you’re sledding down a hill of fine powder.  The next, you’re driving through a 7-11 Slurpee.


Reflections. In black and white.

The thing about reflection is that it’s become a very loaded word.  I love reflections because they show more than the subject itself – in this case, you get to see the trees reflected back in the water of the Sumas River.  Two sets of trees, with the reflections serving as a surreal mirror of our world.  But reflections never tell the whole story.  One never gets to see everything in reflection.

If you stare into a mirror, you only see part of yourself, and it’s an opposite image.  It’s not even what the world sees.  Every reflection is, in a sense, a false image.  Yet, we’re all a little obsessed with our own reflection – we pause to glance at ourselves when we pass mirrors, windows and water to see what we look like without being conscious of the fact that what we see is not real.


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