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My summer break — July and August

  • 16th Sep, 2007 at 12:42 AM

The rest of the summer flew by quickly. I had less and less time to take photographs as more and more of it was consumed by, you know… I don't remember. But in any event, I was so busy I barely had time to sit down and edit photographs.

Plus, I started to feel more and more guilty about not writing. You know that feeling, where you haven't done something for so long that you put it off because you're too embarrassed to just pick it up again? Yeah, I knew you'd understand.

Originally uploaded by sfllaw.

I stayed in Ottawa for the Canada Day long weekend. After lounging around the city, trying to avoid the crazed tourist mobs, I ended up on Parliament Hill with ostraya and her friends. We blew bubbles and painted people's faces, as we waited for the fireworks.

Originally uploaded by sfllaw.

Through the grapevine, we heard that the organizers might cancel due to the weather, but in the end they launched them. Jas, who had tagged along, eloquently described the spectacle as “fucking awesome”.

Originally uploaded by sfllaw.

When I returned to Montréal, I discovered that the office had acquired one of those fancy Italian coffee machines. I tried my hand at grinding, tamping, and pulling a shot.

Not bad for an amateur, eh?

Originally uploaded by sfllaw.

The bosses had been talking about the July offsite meeting for some time and I was beginning to dread it. For some inexplicable reason, I thought of suffering in a lousy hotel at the corner of Nowhere and Nothing.

Instead, we drove to a lovely cottage retreat, had a local restaurant provide us with gorgeous meals, and lounged around in a hot-tub every evening. I love working here!

Originally uploaded by sfllaw.

I soon discovered that my favourite abadoned store, Gillman's, was closing.

Binky Holleran, a local restaurateur, bought it. With the excess unsold inventory in hand, she asked various artists to make something out of it. Their exhibit was a fabulous tribute!

Originally uploaded by sfllaw.

In my quest to make computer conferences more interesting, I did a cool tutorial at DemoCamp Montréal 3.

Instead of the overdone topic of “How to build a flashy, interactive ‘Web 2.0’ site that only geeks will use”, I opted for teaching people how to build a counterclock.

A counterclock, of course, runs counterclockwise. I ripped apart a clock I bought merely hours before, flipped its motion around, and got it working before the end of the conference. It went over pretty well.

Natasha Duchene
Originally uploaded by sfllaw.

tashamonster and rubythirtythree held a little concert at Buddhi Lounge. That's a pretty nifty place that looks like a converted basement apartment. That's too depressing to actually live in, but makes a fun space for a club.

Whoever did their interior decoration is a genius! Colanders for lampshades and a bathtub-mounted television playing Disney movies complete the quirky atmosphere.

Peter Zion
Originally uploaded by sfllaw.

Because Peter threw a party for his triumphant return to Montréal, we met our really cool neighbour Jen. Apparently, madamewoo and I made such a good impression on her that she invited us to a picnic in the park.

Or perhaps it's just because we live so gosh-darned close? In any event, whipping up a little spaghetti puttanesca never hurts for a picnic that's right outside my front door. And neither does a little bit of photography.

Christine and baby
Originally uploaded by sfllaw.

Oooh, my friend Christine is having a baby. Doesn't she look beautiful? I got invited to their baby shower where I got to see kids running around like mad, a really happy dog, and three sane men stomping on a wasps' nest.


( 15 comments — Leave a comment )
16th Sep, 2007 05:25 (UTC)
Nice pics of Gilmans. I also have a small art project. I just need to find the time to pursue it... I'll fill you in next tim e i see you. :)
16th Sep, 2007 05:36 (UTC)
A new art project? Want to demo it at BarCamp? :P
16th Sep, 2007 08:40 (UTC)
You take some truly lovely pictures. I especially like your portraits, which I think must do your subjects justice.
17th Sep, 2007 01:35 (UTC)
Why thank you! I like to think I take good portraits because all of my friends look pretty and dashing.
16th Sep, 2007 10:37 (UTC)
Mind you, the bumblebee-nest stomping occurred *after* it had been filled with gasoline and ignited. This is how you know they are sane.
17th Sep, 2007 01:35 (UTC)
Well yes. Isn't that obvious? :P
16th Sep, 2007 13:02 (UTC)
Cool project. That clock's always been my favourite part of SAT.
17th Sep, 2007 01:36 (UTC)
Me too!

The technicians there have told me that the clock is broken in that it runs randomly backwards instead of stopping at the right time. But none of them know how to fix it, which is a bit sad. :(
17th Sep, 2007 14:09 (UTC)
Actually, I had always assumed that was deliberate. I much prefer it the way it is, it makes me feel not just that time is running backwards but that it has no meaning in that space. Hmm... I wonder if the technicians there understood the artist's intentions.
16th Sep, 2007 17:54 (UTC)
Wow, your pictures are amazing!!
17th Sep, 2007 01:36 (UTC)
16th Sep, 2007 21:24 (UTC)
You know that feeling, where you haven't done something for so long that you put it off because you're too embarrassed to just pick it up again? Yeah, I knew you'd understand.
Yeah, that happens to me all the time. [looks at own sparse-as-of-late blog.]

Great photos. This Canada day I learned how hard that facepainting shot is to get. The photo of Peter Zion is also awesome. It looks like it was too dark to not use a flash, but the light that hit him is really diffuse. Also, it looks like it was dusk, so you had to have the shutter open to gather enough light for the background, yet he is not at all blurry...how the hell did you do that?
17th Sep, 2007 01:41 (UTC)
The facepainting shot has fill-flash to compensate for the bright sunlight. The little girl's face isn't overexposed because I covered part of the flash with my finger. That's pretty easy with your left hand on a point-and-shoot.

For the portrait of Peter, I had a few tricks up my sleeve. If you look at the EXIF properties, you'll note that he was shot on telephoto. The external flash had the wide panel down and was angled left, so his face caught the feathered light instead of a direct flash. At 105mm, the DOF at f/4 is good enough that he's all in focus. And the long exposure at 1/6 sec means that I had to use IS and that he had to be rather still.
17th Sep, 2007 01:42 (UTC)
Oh yeah, there was also a car with its headlights on to his right, which provides those lovely highlights you see.
25th Mar, 2008 16:32 (UTC)
My favourite pharma supermarket world-pharma.pillsfm.com
My favourite pharma supermarket
( 15 comments — Leave a comment )