Category Archives: Photography

Oh Cruel Ice Storm (April 12, 2013)

Oh cruel ice storm,
Your brittle rain of terror
must finally end.

A late season blast of wintry weather in Southern Ontario manifested as freezing rain and ice pellets in many areas. We lost power for about three hours in the middle of the night, so it could have been worse.

(Click any photo to view larger on Flickr)

Oh Cruel Ice Storm

Ice Storm: Tree of Ice

Ice Storm: Frozen Feeder

Ice Storm: Icy Chipmunk

Ice Storm: Garden of Earthly Delights

Ice Storm: Arbour Drips

Ice Storm: Lattice Drips

Ice Storm: To Scrape or Not To Scrape

Ice Storm: Hose Drips

My Publisher

When I was a young kid, it used to be a fun thing to periodically sit at the dining room table and bring out the shoebox of family photos, and divvy them up between my sister and me. Dad would keep a few too. The goal was to create our own photo albums of the photos we had selected.

As I got older I would continue this practice of curating the best of my photos into photo albums. But with the digital age upon us, like many people I found myself with fewer photos and slides and negatives to manage and archive, but with mounting numbers of their digital equivalents.

And you can’t exactly put a JPEG into a photo album now can you?

Well sure you can, as I would soon find out.

For ten years or so I have, from time to time, trotted out my virtual shoebox of photos to put together a photo album. Not just a virtual album, as you would do on Flickr or Facebook, but a real world honest-to-goodness published book of photographs.

There are lots of ways to accomplish this, but the service I chose and stuck with was My Publisher (

I recently did a couple of new albums, which they call “photobooks”. One is to showcase my woodworking projects, the other to collect some photos taken around Owen Sound and Grey and Bruce counties, where we now live.

Here’s the woodworking one:

From the Workshop

Click here (or on the cover photo) to view the whole book.

Here’s the Owen Sound and Grey Bruce one:

Around the Sound

Click here (or on the cover photo) to view the whole book.

I seem to have forgotten to include my name on the Owen Sound book. Duh. That’s what happens when you stay up late to work on these things. But as it’s a print run of only one copy, I think I can remember who took the pictures.

Operation Goldfish Rescue

(Click any photo to view larger on Flickr.)

Operation Goldfish Rescue

We’ve been battling the drought all year, trying to keep enough water in the pond to keep our goldfish afloat. When we bought the house, there were an estimated one thousand goldfish. Due mostly to predation (after we removed the net strung over the whole pond, herons and other birds became regular visitors) we found ourselves down to about six fish.

Operation Goldfish Rescue

Lynda recently purchased a small aquarium at the Market Day where I peddle my woodworking, and managed to rescue those last six fish. Also a couple of snails and a tadpole. We returned the tadpole.

Operation Goldfish Rescue

Owen Sound Dragon Boat

On a perfect spring evening, May 15, I went down to the Owen Sound boat launch to watch as my wife participated in the maiden voyage of the 2012 Owen Sound Tuesday Night Dragon Boat Team, and in fact the maiden voyage of the Dragon Boat herself.

As always, click any photo to view larger on Flickr.

Picnic Tables
Picnic tables next to the boat launch. These probably get a lot of use during the summer.

Lynda Gets Her Game Face On
Lynda gets her game face on. Like all top athletes, she has to find her centre, or something.

The Dragon Boat (sans dragon)
The chariot awaits. The dragon boat has no drum or dragon accoutrements at this stage, as they are too fragile to risk during practice runs.

Dragon Boat Team Prayer Circle, or something
The team has a bonding moment before boarding.

Boarding the Dragon Boat
After determining seating arrangements (decorum prevents me from disclosing the criteria that determine seating, but I was proud to see my wife up front in the skinny section of the craft) the group begins boarding.

Last Minute Instruction
With all paddlers aboard, the crew gives some last minute instruction at dockside, before climbing aboard and casting off.

Dragon Boat Away!
After successfully reversing away from the dock (see the video clip below) the maiden voyage of the 2012 Owen Sound Tuesday Night Dragon Boat Team is successfully underway!

Click here to view these photos as a Flickr slideshow (may require Flash).

Here is a video of the maiden voyage of this crew, and the maiden launch of the craft herself:

(Link to YouTube page:

Gormenghast and Environs

On Sunday (May 13, 2012) I decided to take a day trip up to our little cabin on the Bruce Peninsula, to check on the property which we pretentiously call “Gormenghast” (after the Mervyn Peake novels). The cabin was not much worse for wear, all things considered. So I left Gormenghast and motored and/or hiked around the general area and took some pictures. These are a few of them.

As always, click any photo to view a larger version on Flickr.

Gormenghast Manor
Our little cabin seems in not bad shape still… you fear the worst when you haven’t been up for a couple of years.

I was excited to see we had a couple of trilliums blooming next to the cabin. I would later realize there were trillions of them throughout the area. But ours were the best.

Fern. Or soon will be. By midsummer the ferns are thick enough to completely hide a small dog.

Bug on Trillium
A bug on our trillium. The bastard. I let him live though. This time…

Tent Caterpillars
Tent caterpillars on a camping trip. Also bastards. But also still alive. I came in peace.

Two Trilliums
Two trilliums. Or is that “trillia”? No, probably not.

Some Trilliums
Some more trilliums. They are the national flower of the Province of Ontario, so to speak.

Like a Rock. And a Trillium.
Like a rock, and a flower. Strength and fragility. It’s a metaphor, innit.

A Trillion Trilliums
A trillion trilliums. You know, approximately.

Golden Acres
Golden Acres is a property in the area, and particularly well named at this time of year when the dandelions are in bloom. This made me sing “Golden Slumbers” by the Beatles, as I thought of Dorothy and her palls falling asleep in the poppy field.

Lone Tree
The quintessential lone tree. This one made me sing “All By Myself” (the Eric Carmen version, not the Celine Dion version. Seriously, I have standards.)

Another Lone Tree
Another lone tree, not as quintessential as the other one, perhaps. This one didn’t make me sing at all.

Pebble Beach
A pebble beach. Not the golf Pebble Beach, sorry search-engine visitors… just a lower case pebble beach, looking north towards Cape Chin, from near Lion’s Head. Which is also not a golf thing.

Pebbles and Plant
Pebbles and Plant: the Flinstones meets Led Zeppelin? No. Tenacious green life takes hold amidst all the gray. Another one of those metaphor thingies.

Devil's Monument
A short side trail of the world famous Bruce Trail brings you to this lookout over Gerogian Bay and Devil’s Monument. Near Cape Chin, where Jay Leno was born, I believe.

Devil's Monument in Perspective.
I crush your monument, devil. Crush crush crush.

You can view these pictures as a slideshow on Flickr if you wish. It may require Flash, not sure.

By Moonlight

A series of photos taken on April 5, 2012, around our backyard and garden, by the light of the full moon. Click any photo to view larger on Flickr.

Pond and Chairs by Moonlight
Pond and Chairs by Moonlight

Chairs and Table by Moonlight
Chairs and Table by Moonlight

Birdbath by Moonlight
Birdbath by Moonlight

Garden Path by Moonlight
Garden Path by Moonlight

Pond and Fence by Moonlight
Pond and Fence by Moonlight

Patio by Moonlight
Patio by Moonlight

Visiting Mallards

This is the time of year when the mallards drop by the pond to eat our goldfish. Sometimes they stay for a while and build a nest. One year they even raised little ducklings. We’ll see what happens this year, it’s early days yet.

Visiting Mallards (1 of 4)

Visiting Mallards (2 of 4)

Visiting Mallards (3 of 4)

Visiting Mallards (4 of 4)

Sunset Cruise

Yesterday I took the Blue Heron Cruises Sunset Cruise out of Tobermory. I was on board the Great Blue Heron again, the same ship that took us on the Flowerpot Island Cruise last week.

As always, click any photo to view larger on Flickr.

North Bruce Peninsula

Leaving Little Tub Harbour and proceeding eastward along the north shore of the Bruce Peninsula, the first section is characterized by a rugged enough shoreline by most standards, but with some cottages managing to maintain a foothold.


The shoreline soon changes to a craggier, more rugged look, and would remain so for the rest of the cruise.


It’s never difficult to see the sedimentary nature of the Bruce Peninsula, as part of the Niagara Escarpment.

Jumbled Slabs

Car-sized slabs of broken-off pieces of the escarpment litter the shoreline in places, giving way occasionally to small pristine cobblestone beaches.

Overhanging Point 1

At one point, the captain announced that we were looking at something called “Overhanging Point”. Which seemed odd, because just about every point could well have been called that, as these overhangs were in evidence all along our route.

The Grotto

This is part of The Grotto, a popular feature of Bruce Peninsula National Park (formerly Cyprus Lake Provincial Park).

Overhanging Point 2

Another overhanging point. Not sure which of these was the one actually named Overhanging Point.

Cave Insertion

The shoreline has many of these caves eroded into the rock. A popular feature of the cruise is when the captain positions the bow of the ship right in the cave. The folks standing there can actually touch the cave walls and ceiling. On this day, however, due to onshore winds and a bit of choppiness, this was as close as he dared to go, despite my taunting him and calling him “chicken”.

Great Blue Heron Sunset

Not long afterwards, we turn back westwards and head off into the sunset.

Flowerpot Island Sunset

Flowerpot Island slides by slowly to our starboard side, as we make our way back to Tobermory.