Monthly Archives: January 2016

Seinfeld, Leno & Scarfone

Last year my good friend Joey Scarfone asked me to work with him on a project. He wanted to put together a picture book featuring local vintage automobiles, of which there are so many I wager it’s impossible to count. Victoria is a car collecting sort of place, and cars here don’t rust away like they do in the rest of Canada. Suffice to say we worked on the book for many months, Joey taking pictures, and me producing the graphics and the document. This is a labour of love, and kudos to Joey for coming up with the idea, and funding the entire thing from his pocket. The book was printed by one of the best houses in the country, Friesen, and Joey ordered one thousand copies printed. His tiny shop is brimming with the books stacked all over, and they are selling steadily. Here is the cover:

VINTAGE CARS VIC_COVER PAGE

Ever the optimist, Joey insisted that the book be called Volume 1. Meanwhile Joey came up with another idea, which he pitched to the local cable provider, Shaw TV; a TV show about vintage cars! Joey asked me along to help out when we shot the first show, which featured one of the cars in the book, a 1972 Rolls Royce. I am please to announce it here on Nathanguitars.com that Episode One of Vintage Cars of Victoria is now live on YouTube! Click on the photo for the link. After watching you can stay tuned and watch Jay Leno do a spot about the CHIPS cars! I must admit to being thrilled to be in such company.

Joey Scarfone - host of Vintage Cars of Victoria

Joey Scarfone – host of Vintage Cars of Victoria / click photo for link

LINK TO JOEY’S WEBSITE

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Between Wet Squalls

Between wet squalls
sunshine and rainbows
the lake trail calls me

Down the street the trail forks
which is the road less traveled
on a circle?… no matter

I choose right
by far the most frequent choice
I am habituated

Prepared for whatever
two cameras ready
one for close up, one far away

At the floating bridge I wait
at hand the short telephoto
hoping to catch the muskrat

I’ve seen it rarely
small brown rodent in the rushes
shiny wet hairy junior football

Each time I see
it sees me too
I blink and it’s gone

In the bushes I detect
kinglets, hairy woodpeckers, finches
they too elude the camera

Halfway round luck changes
a hummingbird, tired of diving
rests close at hand, flashing green

The sun peeks in and out
the rainbow waxes and wanes
several runners pass

At the Garry Oak meadow something very tiny
another hummingbird
even smaller – maybe a Calliope

Sun in my eyes, I move down
into the grass to look for it
but it buzzes away

While I wait
from out of the trees
a Red Tailed Hawk appears

It makes a line
straight towards the tree
the lone tree it calls home

In the field I look up
there looping about the sky
an eagle soars

Perfectly lit by the low sun
the eagle circles
while I focus

Later on I reflect on pictures
the tiniest and the
mightiest of birds

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Filed under Birds, Photography, Poetry

Street Scenes – late afternoon

The nutrients are working - my hair feels more intelligent already.

"Dude - I forgot my board in your shop!"

"forgot your board? Dope!"

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Filed under Photography, Street photography

Bird Feeder

Gazing out to sea she stood alone at the rail as the ship sped down the fjord, when she became aware of a man feeding French fries to the gulls; a situation that would force a change of plan for the moment at least, or so she thought.

12-IMGP4436

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Filed under Birds, Books and Short Stories, Painting

Big & Uncool

Olympia SG1 - big and cool

Olympia SG1 – big and cool

1-Document (12)

SG3 - big, not so cool

SG3 – big, not so cool

keyboard in white & black

keyboard in white & black

 

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Filed under Thrift shop finds, Typewriters

Endangered Species

Olivetti Tropic- modded

Olivetti Tropic – modded

1-Document (10)

I have plenty of bird pictures, however, and recently many of hawks. While not strictly endangered, I do think raptors are not having an easy time of it. Not far from here a landowner cut down 10 acres of old forest so he could grow hay. There was a hue and cry about it, but the saddest part for me was knowing that the birds and other wildlife just lost another chunk of habitat. A naturalist said that those woods were home to a number of owls, just for instance.

As much as I enjoy photography, and while I don’t want to get into a debate about whether or not it is or isn’t art, I love drawing and painting in another way. When you take a picture of something it is easy to forget what you really saw there. When you draw something, it really sinks into the mind. Yesterday I painted this picture of a hawk that I photographed just a few days before. I feel like I really got to know this bird better by painting it.

Red Tailed Hawk at Swan Lake

Red Tailed Hawk at Swan Lake

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Filed under Birds, Painting, Photography, Typewriters

Distracted

1-hairy polaroid

I hate this commuting

We live in a strange age. The middle class is dissolving like snowmen in April. Our new government was elected on a promise to borrow huge sums that will be spent on infrastructure, as a way to get the economy going. This weekend I read in the paper about what the major cities hope to build, and most of it seems to be focused on mass transit. Great, but I ask you this; the workers are going to get more transit so they can travel to their jobs from further and further away, but is their pay going up? We know the answer to that. Give the workers more transit; it will distract them from the fact that their standard of living is declining, and their commuting time is increasing.

8-neon crow

I hope they haven’t sold out the latest Stones farewell tour yet

Some cities are hoping to build new arenas and indoor stadiums with the money. Who can afford to go to the insanely expensive events that will happen there? I never attend concerts or sports events anymore, can’t afford it. I saw the Rolling Stones for $12 back in the day. It was fun, although they sucked on stage even then.  NHL hockey tickets were $5 for standing room when I was at university. I watched the Montreal Canadiens battle the Chicago Blackhawks for the Stanley Cup, for five bucks!! Today a cup of pop costs more than that. The Canadiens moved from the Forum, one of the best arenas in the world, to a new arena which has hardly more seats. Why? Because they could build private boxes for wealthy business clients, boxes that sell for astronomical sums, which they need to pay the players their insane salaries. But in the end who pays? The fans, of course, through the nose. But not me. I don’t even watch anymore. I can’t stand all the damned advertising that’s plastered all over the boards and even on the ice. It distracts me from the game.

6-hmmbrd invert

five seconds and I’m out of here

I heard a story from an elementary school teacher the other day. She can’t teach her class because the students are unable to pay attention for more than five seconds. Meanwhile, every one in the world will soon have a smartphone. Great, but if the ultimate result is kids who can’t think straight, thanks a lot Steve Jobs… I’m sure you never thought that far ahead, and I really don’t blame you, but now what? I was told a similar story about writing skills at universities – kids can’t write anymore. But no one fails either. The professors are intimidated by the power of the students. Everyone loses here however. There are too many distractions for students to pay attention and learn. Maybe they see what’s waiting for them when they get out of school?

5-squirrel

I forgot what I was saying

But I have distractions too, like fooling around with pictures. But if you’re supposed to be doing your homework, you better quit looking at this right now and get back to work!

7-hawk sk

undistractable

 

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Filed under Animal psychology, Birds, Photography