Freezing rain

winter 17

winter 12

winter 18winter 10
winter 1

All of these are from the archives except for the portrait-oriented photo on the right*. (This past Sunday we had a full day of freezing rain, and it had coated all the windows on the front of the house. This was the view looking out.)



Snowflakes 5

One of the upsides to a full day of the right type of snow, is pulling out the close-up lens and trying to photograph some snowflakes.

Snowflakes 1

Snowflakes 2

From past experimenting I've found that the snow has to be just the right consistency. Basically, dry and light so that each flake sits on top of the one below, creating small pockets of air.

Snowflakes 8

Snowflakes 4

Using an external light source, one can angle the light to reflect across the plane of the snowflake, causing it to shine.

Snowflakes 6

Snowflakes 10

Or to catch edges, angles and curves by directing the light to the side of a pile of snow.

Snowflakes 9

I've never had any luck doing this when the snow is heavy (big, wet flakes), dense, well-packed, old (not fresh), or during the day. As for technical bits, for all these photos I used my old camera, the D70s (I've been having some shutter trouble with the D300 lately), my trusty old Sigma 50mmƒ2.8 lens and a basic desk lamp with a bendable neck. As for camera settings, I used manual focus, manual exposure with aperture set at ƒ5.6, shutter speed based on the internal light meter and iso at 200. All were processed in Lightroom. The blue tint added by setting the white balance to tungsten then adjusting the temperature (blue/yellow slider) to the right a tad.

Snowflakes 3

Here are some I took a few years ago:


Friday cloud blogging

Sunset, storm

Taken back in 2008, near Dubrovnik.

Sunset, storm, moon

Watching both sun set and a storm roll in while out on the ocean is an amazing experience.


December already!?

Ice on burning bush

Oh, where has the time gone. Can't believe it's been so long since my last post. I got carried away into the November doldrums, I guess ... ;-)

Thank you all so much for the wonderful comments on the Quebec City post. It was a magical trip, and I'm happy to see that that came across in my photos. I would whole-heartedly recommend visiting, in any season. I've been in summer and now fall, but I imagine it would be even more amazing with snow on the ground.

Ice on honeysuckle bushIce on euonymus

For those who are interested in experimental portraiture, creativeLIVE is hosting Jeremy Cowart -- of Help-Portrait fame -- Thursday and Friday for another online workshop. I've heard Jeremy speak a few times, and really like his demeanour and his focus on the art and craft of photography. Here's the link to the course info and urls to watch it live. (It's free for the live viewing, plus they usually offer a re-watch a few hours after the live broadcast.)

Spider web frost

Those in the northernly regions, hope you're all staying warm (and out of those doldrums!) .


Quebec City

Alley cat

I had the opportunity to spend a few days in beautiful old Quebec City last week. It was typical fall weather - a bit of wind, a bit of rain, and a bit of sun. Here are some images from my wanders. (Mind the post, it's a long one!)

I came across the above alley as I walked along the city walls heading towards the Port. The light that was bouncing around made me wish I was a people shooter. It was divine. Instead, a furry little ruffian helped me out. ;-)


A view taken in Lower Town. You can just barely see the Fleuve Saint-Laurent, or Saint Lawrence River, in the background.

View rue du Fort

rue Sainte-Anne

Two views taken, one looking down rue du Fort (first) and then down rue Ste-Anne (second).

Chateau Frontenac archSpider and web

The photo on the left is part of the decorative ceiling of the portico leading into the Chateau Frontenac.

rue Sainte-Anne leaves

Tower of Notre-damerue du Trésor artwork

The tower of Notre-Dame de Quebec on the left, artwork on display at the entrance to rue du Trésor.

Chateau Frontenac from lower town

A view of Chateau Frontenac from Lower Town.

JesterChateau Frontenac wall covering

A close-up of the jester, a bronze sculpture by Nicole Taillon on the left, and wall-covering from the Chateau on the right.

rue du Fort grafNumber 47

I spotted the creature graf on the Walk/Yield sign (left image) on a number of signs throughout the city.

rue du Petit-Champlain

rue du Petit-Champlain

Two views of the purported oldest street in North America, rue du Petit-Champlain, in Lower Town.

Cochon restaurant nameplateCochon restaurant menu

Cochon restaurant

Lights on lower town

Wrought ironMonument to the Faith

On the right, the Monument to the Faith fountain in front of the Chateau.

Statue of ChamplainLower town stone building

The Father of New France himself, Samuel de Champlain on the left. (The pedestal is made from stone also used in the Arc de Triomphe and Sacré-Coeur Basilica in Paris.)

rue du Trésor

Another view of the artisans and their work along rue du Trésor.

Tree berriesFuniculaire

The Funiculaire, on the right, taking people from Upper to Lower Town etc.

Lower town wall art

Trompe l'oeil mural at Place-Royale, above and below on left.

Lower town wall artTree berries

Lower town alley

Another lovely street in Lower Town.

Lower town bird

rue du Petit-Champlain

Lower town cobblestone


French v English

The above chess set gave me a chuckle: Montcalm vs Wolfe.

rue du Petit-Champlain

Chateau FrontenacChateau Frontenac Saint-André at night

rue Saint-Louis at night

rue Saint-Louis bokeh

Epicerie Richard at night

Sky at nightChateau Frontenac window at night