2013 in review

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2013 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

A New York City subway train holds 1,200 people. This blog was viewed about 7,900 times in 2013. If it were a NYC subway train, it would take about 7 trips to carry that many people.

Click here to see the complete report.

2012 in review

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2012 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

4,329 films were submitted to the 2012 Cannes Film Festival. This blog had 18,000 views in 2012. If each view were a film, this blog would power 4 Film Festivals

Click here to see the complete report.

Weekly Post Challenge: “Let There Be Light”

George Street

George Street

Here’s to all those people who have said that they want to see more winter landscapes from me. I’m happy to say that this shot has become a bit of a local favourite, and I am quite satisfied to produce something that isn’t the run of the mill, picture postcard snowy forest image. I’m thrilled that with this piece I get to show that sometimes it’s the most unpopular places that shine so brightly.

Click HERE for the story.

MOF Gets a New VIBA

“Green Eyes” – a very old fantasy art piece.

“Green Eyes” – a very old fantasy art piece.

Well, this award is sort of new. This one actually goes waaaaaaaaaaaaaay back! Back to January! Thank you Ksenia of Moments for this Very Inspiring Blogger Award (VIBA). I appreciate this recognition from a very sharp photojournalist. Sorry for taking so long to accept it.

Very Inspiring Blogger Award

Very Inspiring Blogger Award

To accept it, here’s what I gotta do . . .

  • Firstly, link back to the person who nominated MOF.

Done.

  • Secondly, post the award image on this page.

Also done.

  • Thirdly, tell seven random facts about yourself (MOF).

Yeah right! I speak about myself through my artwork.

  • Lastly, nominate fifteen other blogs:

1. Joshi Daniel – I’ve nominated Joshi before but it’s worth it to do it again; absolutely remarkable street portraiture.
2. Lansangan
3. Lost In Translation – I’ve been following Paula for a very long time. Gorgeous landscape photography.
4. Mad Woman With a Camera
5. Mark Kertesz Photography
6. MiltonJohns Photography – He shoots whatever genuinely impacts him.
7. Ming Wang Photography
8. Mishmash – The work of Mimi Patenaude; it’s about time that I paid respect to this fellow Canadian.
9. Modern Heiroglyphics – A great blog on graffiti and street art.
10. Monochrome
11. Monochrome one Photoblog
12. My Blog – Abstract portraiture from a Vancouver artist finding her way through the blogosphere.
13. My Blog with Pretty Pictures – Very impressive street photography.
14. Nylon Daze – Patti Kuche is an English photojournalist in New York. Her blog is a must see.
15. Next Picture, Please >>>

Weekly Post Challenge: “Habit”

It's About Thinking Where We're Going

It’s About Thinking Where We’re Going

I’m talking about street photography, as I so often do! While many, rightfully, obsess about how to do it I’m often preoccupied with the reasons of why to do it. It comes from my upbringing. I was always taught that there is a reason for things; a reason for doing things. I should be conscious of my actions because my actions have positive or negative consequences. Not merely act out of some instinct or meaningless habit.

Truth be told, not everyone thinks ahead. Some of us do but unfortunately don’t think far enough ahead when it’s actually possible. Getting into some sort of trouble is typically how life tells us that we’ve grossly lacked foresight.

Thanks life, for letting us know after the fact! That’s just what we need! You’re so awesome!

Oscar Wilde is well known for many quotes. One being: “Experience is simply the name we give our mistakes.” Well, given some of his choices life, he really ought to have known. The blessed reality about his axiom; however, is that those who survive their mistakes are placed in a wonderful position to teach the rest of us to not copy their errors.

That said, not repeating history works well when we don’t arrogantly accuse the experienced ones of being hypocrites for not practicing what they preach. They’re only trying to save us from relying too much on that 20/20 hindsight.

I try to use art to make foresight a good habit.

Where I live, there is a grassroots effort (carefully trying to not say “movement”) to look at the city of Hamilton’s past to understand where most surviving things came from, discover what has been lost and complain about what might have been. One of the top ways this is done is to review historical photographs held by private collectors, public library and historical society and newspaper archives. We regard it as connecting with local heritage, and I know this happens in many other communities around the world.

For me, the only hang up about it is that it doesn’t seem to inspire serious consideration of the city’s future, and tomorrow’s prospects – as difficult as they are to predict, are important to me.

When I make sci-fi art, I’m often trying to envision a future so distant that it’s really hard to be certain of. Much closer to reality; when I do street photography at home or in some other city, one of my aims is to document how the place is now in hopes of instilling serious thought about the future.

Yes, although street photography is done viscerally there can be a meaningful purpose, and there is one for me. Just as there are photographic records of the past, there should be some of today. Not just so that future generations can use them to reminisce and bicker as we currently do but so that those pictures may hopefully also be used to help create a better tomorrow.

TheMOFMan Speaks to the Hamilton Camera Club

We Need To Talk

We Need To Talk

I want to take this opportunity to thank Virginia Stranaghan and all the members of the Hamilton Camera Club (HCC) for inviting me to be their guest speaker (November 4, 2013). I feel quite honoured that they selected me to introduce them to street photography (SP).

I’m especially excited to have spoken about street photography with fellow Hamiltonians. As I explained during the engagement, there are other Hamiltonians who engage in SP in the city but there doesn’t appear to be too many others who have made focused projects of the endeavour. I hope it will become infectious.

As I also explained, last October the city approved the draft of its first Cultural Plan under the Love Your City Project (http://www.hamilton.ca/CultureandRecreation/Arts_Culture_And_Museums/culturePlan.htm).  Being incurably passionate about this city, its arts movement and this photographic art genre I like to think that SP will play some part in illustrating, promoting and even modifying Hamilton culture, in a positive way, over the next 20 years. I believe that members of the HCC will do their club and this city proud by rediscovering their local community through contemporary street photography.

I am absolutely thrilled about the amount of feedback that members have given. I think I fielded most of the questions that were asked. For those I couldn’t get to, I sincerely apologize but, to any members who may see this post, please don’t hesitate to e-mail me with your unanswered questions or ask right on this blog. You can also do so on the MOF community page on Facebook.

Some of what I discussed and more can be obtained through the Unrepentant Flâneurs Guide to Street Photography. To find your way to all twelve parts of the series whenever you need to, it’s easiest to just visit the Hammer Home Street Photography Project and click the link to the guide’s preface below the blog’s masthead image.

Hammer Home itself is the only project of its kind, to date, that is dedicated to showcasing the city of Hamilton through SP. By exhibiting the project mainly through blogging it functions as an interactive project, so HCC members are also most welcome to offer their thoughts and questions there along with others who are interested in creatively photographing the life of a city.

As promised, I will forward Virginia a summary of links, names and terms that she can disseminate within the club.

There were a couple people who expressed interest in me participating in one-on-one and small group photo walks as they venture into the genre. I would love to do this. Drop me a line and we’ll work on scheduling weekend outings.

For those associated and not associated with the HCC who will continue to pursue this genre, I can assure you that you are about to embark on one of the most challenging yet spectacular adventures of your life.

Again, I thank the HCC, and I wish them all the best.

Weekly Post Challenge: “Eerie”

Dark is the Eve

Dark is the Eve

This past Halloween, I tried to get under people’s skins by rooting through their gardens.

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