The Big TO

You’ll never guess where this is from. If you need a hint, look for the flag. But seriously, the rain should give it away for sure.

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The Big TO
Just moments before the scene was crowded with tourists taking selfies

I was wandering around the downtown part of the city on a Sunday morning before my flight home. When I arrived here there was no one around on account of the rain. But, being an iconic spot, within three minutes a bus full of Chinese tourists arrived and started taking selfies. It was a comical scene and so I sat on a bench to watch the ensuing chaos. Five minutes later they climbed back onto the bus and were off to the next location.

Canada gallery

Iconic locations are fun to shoot, and with a little effort, you can add your own spin. Many famous photographers seek out the same landmarks around the world. I’m not super motivated to do that. But if I happen to be there then why not, it’s still fun. In fact, it can be more fun to shoot the people at an iconic location than the location itself. Wished I’d thought of that before I took this.

Daylight Savings Time

Daylight savings is upon us and somehow this seemed appropriate. It’s a combination of images taken at different times of day. By carefully merging them I’ve created a surreal scene that combines a daylight image with another one at night. It’s a little like the confusion I experience on a Monday after we change the clocks, eh?

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Daylight Savings Time
Images from day and night merged together

If you detected a slight Canadian accent it’s because I took this while in Toronto. I took one shot out the hotel window when I arrived in in the afternoon and another in the evening. In the past I’ve done similar images using a tripod, but in this case I handheld the camera each time. That creates slight variations which could have been difficult to align, but with a little effort it turned out okay.

more from Toronto

Even when I travel for reasons other than photography I bring my camera. This was a quick business trip with very little time for photos, yet I still managed to get a few shots from around the hotel. Hope springs eternal and I figure that if I bring the camera and I have an extra hour in the day (knock on wood), I’ll get a little time for doing what I like best: eh?

The Floor of Toronto’s Eaton Centre

The floor of Toronto’s Eaton Centre as I walked through early one morning. The shapes and lines caught my eye so I used a balcony to capture it looking down. There are normally a lot of people walking around but I was here before opening.

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The Floor of Toronto's Eaton Centre
The Floor of Toronto’s Eaton Centre

Years ago when I lived here this was called the Eaton Center. Eaton’s department store was one of the anchors with Hudson’s Bay the other. Things have changed since those days and the stores are now different and the name of the mall is changed. However I think everyone still calls it the Eaton Centre.

In some monochrome images I’ll leave something in color. This is a technique I use to elevate individuals or things. Photography is a way to freeze an instant of time, a random moment of our lives. Here I am emphasis a person within the setting.

Each person has a unique way of seeing the world, no two are alike. When the mall opens in another hour all of those people will pour in and become a crowd. Each individual in that crowd experiences it in their own way.

canadian gallery

That’s a zen perspective that I sometimes get from photography. I find that if I take a moment to consider a scene I might just find meaning in it. In this case I found meaning in the mall.

Just Before Dawn

This is the city of Toronto just before dawn on a Sunday morning. There’s something about the electricity of a city that is attractive, I think it’s something in our nature. I used to live here for a dozen years, it was at a time I stopped doing photography, now when I go back I bring my camera.

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Just Before Dawn
Just Before Dawn in Toronto, Ontario Canada

This spot is just east of the city, I’m sure it’s popular with photographers but there were none here at this hour. I guess I was a little lucky with the timing because just as I was finishing up it started raining. Not that I mind a little rain, but being in a deserted industrial site in the rain at this hour is, well, less fun than sitting in a Starbucks with a spiced pumpkin latte.

Another good thing about showing up late or early to locations like this, the water is smooth as there are no boats moving about. That creates the smooth reflections which are further enhanced by the long exposure. So despite the cold, the rain and the ungodly hour, this is the perfect time and setting for photography.

more panoramas

In fact this is a three image panorama. I took three, eight-second exposures side by side with a tripod and then stitched them together. The end result is a high resolution image that I can enjoy from the comfort of a warm room while sipping a latte and thinking to myself “that’s wasn’t so bad, was it?”


I don’t need to tell you because everyone knows Ron is in Toronto. I ran into Ron the other day while wandering around Toronto. It was raining and not too many people were out, but that could have been because it was Sunday morning. In any case, as I said, I was wandering about in the rain and there, right in front of me is Ron. I was a little surprised to see Ron.

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Ron Is In Toronto
RON is in TORONTO (the sign that is)

I’m a little shy, so I wasn’t sure if I should go right up to Ron or just hang back. I decided to hang back, safer that way. There were a few other people milling about but I’m not sure if they recognized Ron.

I was about to walk up and take a photo but then it happened. As I sat there transfixed I heard an incessant noise, or shout. I looked around and as I looked behind me there was a large group of Chinese tourist shouting for me to get out of the way. I was standing in front of Ron in Toronto and ruining their shot. I can understand that, I hate when that happens. Some people can be oblivious to others trying to get a perfect photo. At that moment the someone was me.

more urban street photos

Anyway, just as quickly as they appeared they vanished into the grey morning drizzle of an October day. I was left wondering how so many could disappear so quickly. I must say these tourist are efficient in the extreme.

Finally I had my chance, it was just me and Ron in Toronto. I approached and took a picture. This is Ron, in Toronto.

Winding Roads

I spent a recent afternoon on some winding roads north of Toronto. The drive is nice any time but this time of year is hard to beat. The days are quickly getting shorter and there are dustings of snow here and there. Coming from Florida this was an exceptional treat, not only the colors but the cooler weather as well.

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Wnding Roads
Winding roads in Ontario Canada

Whenever I saw something I liked I just pulled over and took a shot out the window. That’s a lazy way to take photos but I couldn’t help it, I was in a lazy mood.

Sometimes laziness works, luck works too. Sometimes getting a good photo of a landscape is a meticulous process of preparation and execution. Other times a simple shot out the window will do. I admire photographers that go to great lengths, it shows in their work. Sometimes, I do that, especially when I have more time. But given a quick afternoon drive and a camera, I’ll go with the flow.

autumn photos from the gallery

It’s a little like taking photos when you’re on a tour. Your time is not your own, your on a tour, following a schedule. So you do your best and get what you can. Sometimes its like that when I have a short time to go take photos, I just go with the flow and have fun.

One thing is for sure, the worst day of taking photos is still better than the best day at work. And this was not a bad day by any stretch of the imagination.