Stopping the Clock

Backlight, Canon 70-200 mm 2.8 IS L Series Lens, Canon Camera, Canon Live View, High Dynamic Range (HDR), Light Intensity, Photography & Conceptualizing Beauty, Project 365 - Photo-a-day, Still Life, Summer, Sunrise, Weather
Arches Nat'l Park - Moab, Utah 1

Arches Nat’l Park – Moab, Utah 1

Arches Nat'l Park - Moab, Utah 2

Arches Nat’l Park – Moab, Utah 2

Arches Nat'l Park - Moab, Utah 3

Arches Nat’l Park – Moab, Utah 3

Arches Nat'l Park - Moab, Utah 4

Arches Nat’l Park – Moab, Utah 4

Arches Nat'l Park - Moab, Utah 5

Arches Nat’l Park – Moab, Utah 5

As a newly heard phrase, the words ‘when the clock stops’ intrigue as a conceptualization of abundant time that can be personally directed. In these words you are no longer ‘on the clock’ and answerable to someone else for your use of time (in work hours). The phrase describes the inverse of having too little quality time or personal time, of being ‘time-starved.’ The ‘on the clock’ world tends to describe our work situation in which work becomes a way of Life and survival more than it is a Life chosen through free will. What is more, among Stephen Covey’s seven habits of highly effectively people there is the habit of sharpening the saw – the regular withdrawal from endeavor that renews you allowing your return to endeavor fresh, invigorated and with greater clarity of perspective (vision). The phrase ‘off the clock’ does intrigue.

Tonight, sleep eludes me and I’m stopping the clock.

The past seven weeks have been heavy with tasks and within the last two weeks demands on my time beyond my school day have been substantial, yet the rewards for others and me have also been substantial. Editing images remains my means of stopping the clock and sharpening the saw. In the last few nights I’ve settled in editing Utah photos from July. I’ve left these images for now, when I would make time for them rather than rush through their edits. And, I’ve made time to deal with a monitor issue before editing. I have calibrated both monitors so the differential between them in hue, luminance and contrast is minimal – what I see on one monitor is what I see on the other. One monitor has tended toward warmer colours, while the other has been cooler. The calibration should go a long way toward presenting images as my eye sees them right on the monitor.

The images presented here are Arches National Park Buttes during a summer sunrise.

Quote to Consider – “Insofar as photography does peel away the dry wrappers of habitual seeing, it creates another habit of seeing: both intense and cool, solicitous and detached; charmed by the insignificant detail, addicted to incongruity.” – Susan Sontag, ‘On Photography’

Listening to – U2’s ‘Live from Paris’ album; ‘Trip through Your Wires,’ ‘I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For,’ and ‘Running to Stand Still’ are songs standing out. Also have found Jen Chapin & Rosetta Trio’s version of Bruce Springsteen’s ‘American Skin (41 Shots);’ reminds of Jackson Browne doing this song in a tribute to Bruce Springsteen – the story behind the song is worth the investigation. I’m also enjoying Bruce Springsteen’s ‘Live in Dublin’ concert – just now the banjo bringing in ‘Jesse James.’ The same album contains ‘If I Should Fall Behind,’ something for couples and married to hear. The night is being rounded out by Bruce Hornsby & the Range, ‘The Show Goes On’ from the Backdraft soundtrack.

Post Script – Luka Bloom also aims at stopping the clock with his tune, ‘Blackberry Time.’

Song from My Youth

Canon Camera, Canon Live View, High Dynamic Range (HDR), Journaling, Light Intensity, Photography & Conceptualizing Beauty, Project 365 - Photo-a-day, Still Life, Sunset, Weather, Winter
Fire Tower, Watt Mountain - High Level, Alberta 1

Fire Tower, Watt Mountain – High Level, Alberta 1

Fire Tower, Watt Mountain - High Level, Alberta 2

Fire Tower, Watt Mountain – High Level, Alberta 2

Fire Tower, Watt Mountain - High Level, Alberta 3

Fire Tower, Watt Mountain – High Level, Alberta 3

Watt Mountain 2 - High Level, Alberta 1

Watt Mountain 2 – High Level, Alberta 1

Watt Mountain Ice - High Level, Alberta 1

Watt Mountain Ice – High Level, Alberta 1

Watt Mountain Ice - High Level, Alberta 2

Watt Mountain Ice – High Level, Alberta 2

A quiet Saturday, one spent mostly at home comes to a close. The Ozark Mountain Daredevils play from my iTunes account through computer speakers, ‘If You Wanna Get To Heaven’ – muted strings on a guitar are percussive, a harmonica brings in melody and other instruments, the sound preceding lyrics that consider getting to heaven – song and lyrics attract my ear, a song from my youth. The evening has involved editing images from Watt Mountain.

Listening to – Bruce Springsteen’s ‘Highway Patrolman,’ ‘One Step Up,’ and ‘Last to Die.’ There’s been ‘Rumble’ by Link Wray and the Wraymen. The Who have played ‘Boris the Spider,’ ‘I Can See for Miles’ and ‘Magic Bus.’ The Kingsmen have played ‘Louie Louie.’ Green Day have played ‘East Jesus Nowhere.’ The playlist has rounded out with Bruce Springsteen singing Pete Seeger’s Civil Rights anthem, ‘We Shall Overcome.’

Quote to Consider – “Picture-taking has been interpreted in two entirely different ways: either as a lucid and precise act of knowing, of conscious intelligence or as a pre-intellectual, intuitive mode of encounter.” – Susan Sontag, ‘On Photography’

Soul Searchers

Canon 60D, Canon 70-200 mm 2.8 IS L Series Lens, Canon Camera, Canon Live View, Christmas, Christmas Lights, Farmhouse, High Dynamic Range (HDR), Homestead, Light Intensity, Photography & Conceptualizing Beauty, Project 365 - Photo-a-day, Winter
Christmas Heart - High Level, Alberta

Christmas Heart – High Level, Alberta

Homestead -  Rycroft, Alberta

Homestead – Rycroft, Alberta

Wagon Wheels - Beaverlodge, Alberta

Wagon Wheels – Beaverlodge, Alberta

Crosses - Bezanson, Alberta

Crosses – Bezanson, Alberta

At Christmas, Love amplifies, powerful and lifting, scrabbling through the dark mess of tangle. Care and pardon affirm, anchoring you, there, in other Hearts – disgrace yields, grace overcomes. Love finds its way. At Christmas, the first steps within the incarnation are taken; a betrothed groom and fiancée making the best of things, travel within a colonized Israel to add their names within a census, a decision perhaps that may have to do with the practicality in it being safer to identify as a family with what will follow from the census; the fiancée is pregnant, a surprise to the groom and his betrothed. Are the two young? Is Joseph older and knowing something of how to live a Life within this colonized world? Is he prepared for this night? A makeshift moment allows the two to shelter among animals in a barn or cave. Mary moves into labour, a baby is born, a new Life that becomes central to a grand narrative we all are participating in. The name Joseph is first used with Jacob’s wife Rachel, when she conceives and bears a son after many years barren; Joseph literally means ‘he who takes my shame away.’

All this and more become the Christmas story. A few songs tell the story well; but, the one that might best fit today’s times and needs could be that provided by Dave Matthews & Tim Reynolds in ‘Christmas Song.’ I like the conceptualization of any of us as ‘soul-searchers.’ The blood of the children reference is, while scary, accurate within this song – blood covers sins; Christ’s blood was shed for all to overcome their/our sin-state and thereby becomes the blood of the children referred to within the song.

The incarnation is an inconceivable event, something that needs more acceptance than figuring. You need to involve your imagination in such reckoning as precursor to such an event in preparation to be able to recognize when and if such an event does happen, has happened or will happen. You’d have to consider how involving God here on earth might play out.

The song that brought this kind of precursor imagining about best was a Joan Osborne, grunge-rock tune, that I heard most helpfully sung by Martyn Joseph on Radio Ulster’s ‘Rhythm and Soul’; thank you to Presbyterian Pastor, Steve Stockman for bringing all of that about. Here’s Martyn’s version.

Here’s the Joan Osborne version of ‘One of Us.’

Quote to Consider – “The camera doesn’t make a bit of difference. All of them can record what you are seeing. But you have to SEE.” – Ernest Haas

Listening to – Martyn Joseph’s ‘Beyond Us, ‘Not a Good Time for God’ and Martyn’s take on Bruce Springsteen’s ‘If I Should Fall Behind’ and ‘One Step Up.’ Also, taking a listen to Bruce Springsteen’s ‘Highway Patrolman.’

There’s a lot of grace encountered in ‘Highway Patrolman;’ Springsteen goes on to tell that it deals with family, responsibility and duty when those things conflict. The lyrics are good dealing with brothers sharing good times as much as the morality involved in dealing with a brother who is straying – lyrics catching my attention follow ….

“Well if it was any other man, I’d put him straight away
But when it’s your brother sometimes you look the other way.”

“Me and Frankie laughin’ and drinkin’
Nothin’ feels better than blood on blood
Takin’ turns dancin’ with Maria
As the band played “Night of the Johnstown Flood”
I catch him when he’s strayin’, teach him how to walk that line
Man turns his back on his family he ain’t no friend of mine.”

May you find Grace this Christmas – my gratitude goes out to each of you who have been part of each step and evolution of this photoblog. Thank you – take good care of your good selves.

Blumenort Shop

Canon Camera, Canon Lens, Canon Live View, Farm, Journaling, Photography & Conceptualizing Beauty, Still Life, Weather, Winter
Farm Shop - Blumenort, Alberta

Farm Shop – Blumenort, Alberta

It is snowing. I have driven out to La Crete, Alberta to deliver the table top of my mother and father’s teak dining room table to Homestead Kitchens, reputable wood workers in our region. It’s likely that the wood needs to be refinished – I have left the job to them and their good judgment. Now, where the drive out was done carefully on roads covered with freezing rain, the return journey is done in light snow flurries. Still, in looking out for possible pictures I come across this farmer’s garage/shop near Blumenort, Alberta and collect a few photos. I’m liking the image.

Listening to – Caia’s ‘Remembrance,’ and then Martyn Joseph’s take on Bruce Springsteen, ‘Badlands,’ ‘Blood Brothers,’ ‘Brilliant Disguise’ and ‘Cautious Man.’

Quote to Inspire / Consider – “Using a camera appeases anxiety which the work-drive feel about not working when they are on vacation.” – Susan Sontag, ‘On Photography’

No Exit

Best Practices - Photography, Canon 60D, Canon Camera, Canon Lens, Canon Live View, Farm, Journaling, Light Intensity, Photoblog Intention, Photography & Conceptualizing Beauty, Project 365 - Photo-a-day, Sigma Lens - Wide Angle 10-20mm, Spring, Sunset
No Exit - 1

No Exit – 1

No Exit - 2

No Exit – 2

No Exit - 3

No Exit – 3

No Exit - 4

No Exit – 4

The juxtaposition of ‘No Exit’ against a landscape backdrop seems more an entry into the wilds from which one may not return. And, I note that the image does possess a surreal quality that recalls portions of the memory work accomplished by Jonas and ‘the Giver’ within Lois Lowry’s novel, ‘The Giver;’ this image could serve as cautionary waypoint toward the destination of home in the novel. The novel considers the costs of conformity in a future time. The narrative is one filtering out characters, drawing down to one who has the ability to comprehend, receive and appreciate the collective’s memory found in former times and former ways. This ‘No Exit’ image is taken on an early spring day close to the Rochfort Bridge, a kilometre long train trestle equidistant to Sangudo and Mayerthorpe, Alberta.

Listening to: a preview song, Martyn Joseph singing Bruce Springsteen’s ‘Walk Like a Man,’ a tribute to several songs of Bruce Springsteen.

Quote to Inspire – “A representational photograph says, ‘This is what Vienna looked like.’ An interpretational photograph goes one better and says, ‘This is what Vienna was like. This is how I felt about it.” ― David duChemin, Within the Frame: The Journey of Photographic Vision

Stretching the Hour

Best Practices - Photography, Canon 60D, Canon 70-200 mm 2.8 IS L Series Lens, Canon Camera, Canon Lens, Canon Live View, Home, Journaling, Light Intensity, Photoblog Intention, Photography & Conceptualizing Beauty, Project 365 - Photo-a-day, Spring
Sangudo Duo - Sangudo, Alberta

Sangudo Duo – Sangudo, Alberta

Sidelined at day’s end, looking in to the vehicles of Sangudo’s Alaska Highway Construction Museum, creating an exposure through chain-link fence using smallest depth of field during the stretch of evening’s Golden hour and liking the colour, shape and shadow-work associated with these two trucks from that former time.

Listening to – Ed Sheeran’s ‘The A Team,’ Ben E. King’s ‘Stand By Me,’ Bruce Springsteen’s ‘One Step Up’ and Bill Mallonee & The Vigilantes of Love’s ‘Resplendent’ and ‘Nothing Like a Train.’

Quote to Inspire – “The idea of photography seemed to come together with the idea that this is how I could be – someone who could have one step in the world while at the same time being one step removed from it.” – Donovan Wylie

Fence Post – What Was, Is What We Now See

Canon 60D, Canon Camera, Canon Lens, Farm, Flora, Journaling, Light Intensity, Lookback Photos - One Year Ago, Photoblog Intention, Photography & Conceptualizing Beauty, Project 365 - Photo-a-day, Season, Spring
Fence Post 1

Fence Post 1

Fence Post 2

Fence Post 2

Fence Post 3

Fence Post 3

Fence Post 4

Fence Post 4

Fence Post 5

Fence Post 5

Fence Post 6

Fence Post 6

2012 – we will soon close-out 2012 and all that has been our photography through this year. Many of you have made your way to wordpress along a similar path, catalyzed by the prospect of a photo-a-day improving how we approach photography and taking that daily step of opening and closing a camera shutter, editing a photo and then loading the image (most times with comment) into your wordpress blog. I am in awe of the immensity of this endeavor and grateful to be in receipt of that recursive back and forth of dialogue, something that has created synergy and momentum in each of us returning to our wordpress blog with new images each day. Very good schtuff!

Each of you has been example to me. Each of you has captured images of Life being lived – medias res. Your photos contain mood, capture moment, find humour. I am indebted to each of you for those images of yours that stay with me, that I think about through the day and week. With likes, comments and encouragement, you’ve nudged me forward, further and further with photography this year and I have pushed the envelope in big ways. For all this, I am grateful … thank you for your part in what my 2012 has been.

Take good care of your good, good selves … and enjoy the season as best you can – Merry Christmas.

Former Field Anchor – the photo presented here is another fence post found around Sangudo, Alberta. Again, the play has been in find ways to represent this image.

Listening to – Bruce Springsteen’s Santa Claus Is Coming To Town, John Lennon and Yoko Ono’s Happy Christmas (War is Over), Brenda Lee’s Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree, Chubby Checker & Bobby Rydell’s Jingle Bell Rock and Perry Como’s Home for the Holidays.

Quote to Inspire – “All the technique in the world doesn’t compensate for the inability to notice.” – Elliott Erwitt


Best Practices - Photography, Canon 50mm, Canon 50mm Lens, Canon 60D, Canon Camera, Canon Live View, High Dynamic Range (HDR), Night, Photography & Conceptualizing Beauty, Prime Lens, Project 365 - Photo-a-day, Still Life

A vase and a serving dish, both glass, both transparent yet holding colour, both with shape and form and both reflecting light are subjects in the images presented here. Both glass structures are lenses, the vase, a lens revealing entire beauty of the flower held, the serving dish, a lens to the manna that soon will be eaten. The polished surface’s shape and form reflects light. So too does the interior of the glass.  There’s that place where the glass in being shaped curves or twists receiving form. From that point within there’s reflection, a glint of light from within shining back. Analogy extends forward … what structures hold us that allow us to be seen? Would this be a home?  Would this be a marriage? A vase holds the still-life flower, a living thing of beauty while beautiful. Moving past prime, dying, it is discarded. For us, we each have a rich, subtle life, one that few others really know well.  Is friendship the vase-lens structure allowing for revelation of one’s subtle life? Something in this analogy is truth my mother understood.  Her memory via her paintings prods me forward toward unraveling it.

Listening to Bruce Springsteen from the Tunnel of Love album – One Step Up; Bryan Ferry sings Just Like Tom Thumb’s Blues from Dylanesque.  Amiina from the album Kurr provides a tonal, music box sound in Rugla.  Rugla reminds of another ambient mix by Sigur Ros from the Takk album – Glosoli.  Later, I’m listening to Last Thoughts on Woody Guthrie, thoughts Bob Dylan offers – The Bootleg Series, Vols. 1-3 (Rare and Unreleased) 1961-1991.

Quote to Inspire – “Photography is only intuition, a perpetual interrogation – everything except a stage set.” – Henri Cartier-Bresson – Photography Year 1975 – Life Library of Photography, page: 216