TheMOFMan Exhibits Again at the Atrium | AWP

art exhibition advertisement

wildlife art, art exhibition

Lioness & Lion (Graphite-Wash Drawing [20 x 30”, 20.5 x 32.25” Framed])

Third times the charm! I am quite pleased to announce that I will have wildlife art showing in the 19th Art in the Workplace (AWP) Exhibition in The Atrium @ McMaster Innovation Park (MIP).

This time around, the neo-Salon style show will feature 145 tremendously creative visual artists. It is one of the largest group exhibitions in the region.

So, if you’re in Hamilton or in the vicinity of Hamilton come to the Atrium and meet us, the AWP Board, MIP Staff and tenants.

It’s all happening on:

Thursday, December 3rd 7:00 pm to 9:00 pm

for the gala opening at:

175 Longwood Road South, Hamilton

The 19th AWP Exhibition will be available for viewing 9:00 am to 6:00 pm Monday to Friday (excluding holidays). I’m looking forward to seeing you there!

atrium MIP art exhibition pictures

Arboretum Virtualis | VI

Black and white tree forest landscape photography

First on the Field

I love the look of this mature American elm standing tall, broad and strong by a soccer pitch on a misty morning. It’s the champion that has arrived early to prepare for the big regional game. It’s practically a personification of pride; I just had to photograph it like this.

I’m quite glad that I shot this image when I did because in reality, the poor tree has taken quite a beating. Two months before I composed this piece, it survived an intense windstorm that destroyed many other trees around it. Its own damage was relatively minor but you had to wonder if it could survive another bout of inclement weather, pollution or disease. Sure enough, three months after making the picture an ice storm tore most of its branches off. What was left couldn’t be saved. The remains had to be chopped right down to the ground.

This picture is a history record that a beautiful tree once stood at that spot. In its time, it was always the first one on the field.

TheMOFMan Speaks to the St. Catherines Photographic Club

Black and white BW B&W Hamilton Ontario Canada contemporary urban photography

Now There’s Something You Don’t See Everyday

Just taking this brief opportunity to thank Leah Parker, Cathy Swain and all the members of the St. Catherines Photographic Club for inviting me to speak about street photography at their Tuesday November 10, 2015 meeting. It was certainly a pleasure to be your guest, and I’d be glad to keep in touch!

For club members, and anyone else checking out MOF for the first time, just below I’ve provided some hyperlinks in bright text to the recommended online reading I mentioned at the end of my presentation.

The Unrepentant Flâneur’s Guide to Street Photography – a 12-part online MOF treatise on street photography for beginners and the experienced:

  • The best place to start with the guide is at its preface – a page on the Hammer Home Street Photography Project blog (the above hyperlink will take you right there).
  • Hyperlinks in the Preface lead to all 12 parts and the postface on the main MOF blog.

Street Photography Workshops – a fantastic online resource for new and experienced contemporary street photographers with its impressive aesthetic layout, easy flow of use, straightforwardness of content and effort to reach out globally; it only makes sense when using the Worldwide Web.

Eric Kim Blog – practically everything you want to know about street photography from a contemporary photographer who has created a world renowned name for himself in the genre.

Markus Hartel Street Photography – pretty much the same as Eric Kim but with a focus mainly on New York City, plus many quick but quite valuable tips.

There are also many other contemporary street photographers around the world whose work I love following. Some are well known; many are not. They’re all outstanding and worth acknowledging. As there really are too many of them to mention here, I’ve decided to list just ten of their sites in numerical/alphabetical order that you can link to:

Notice the subtle to wide variances in style despite similar subject matter within a single genre. Individual perspectives are revealed through the differences in seeing and shooting.

I wish everyone the very best in your street photography pursuits.

To Watermark or To Not Watermark – The Sequel

image protection, plagiarism, cease and desist, copyright infringement, image licensing, intellectual property

2012 was an interesting year for me artistically. In some ways it was a fruitful period in my career and I’ll always look back on that time fondly. Back then, I posted, the original installment to this one believing that I probably would never have to revisit the subject again (if you haven’t already read that post, hopefully you’ll click the bright bold type you just read and absorb the older post too – it’s not even as long as this one).

As it turns out, every now and then someone writes me or comments on one of my blogs – usually the Hammer Home Street Photography Project, to let me know in a descent and constructive way that they wish that I didn’t watermark my images. Some even recommend that I use a less powerful colour than red in my watermark. I totally get that and respectfully provide them with a link to the original post. I’m now calling that post Part 1. After reading Part 1, some of the concerned write me back saying that they understand my point of view, and leave it alone.

Do they continue visiting the MOF blog or Hammer Home afterwards? It seems that some do but most don’t. Oh well. It’s not the end of the world. To me, far worse is the plagiarism that I – a not so famous but still quite proud professional artist, stand to face by stupidly not following my own advice from back in 2012.

Case in point: After posting one of my photographs on the main MOF blog in that year but prior to that particular post, I learned that it began to gain considerable attention from others from my plot on the atlas very quickly. That attention has been sustained ever since.

There were some calls from credit unions and other institutions requesting permission to use the picture but most refused to continue discussions the moment I advised them of my licensing options that would have to be obtained under one of my agreements. We didn’t even get to talking turkey. Just the mere mention that I’m prepared with image licensing options was enough to scare many off immediately.

It’s funny how that works. A great many people continually relegate the arts and artists as unimportant special interest activities and groups but are always in great need of our abilities, services and products. Of course, they always want that insufficiently respected talent for free, and assume that all artists have our heads in the clouds.

Despite being well aware of the popularity of the picture, and quite literally desperately wanting to place my trust in my fellow human being, I didn’t backtrack to update that blog post with a watermarked version of that shot. I’ll bet you already know where this is going. Here it comes . . .

This year (2015 for anyone reading this post much later), I discovered that picture was lifted from its post and used elsewhere without even giving TheMOFMan a word of credit, never mind asking permission. Here’s a screenshot of the webpage:

image protection, plagiarism, cease and desist, copyright infringement, image licensing, intellectual property

Instead of immediately jumping half-cocked at the offender using my picture, I took the time necessary – I will not specify chronology or length, to make some careful arrangements. I then, in October, contacted him with this email;


Olu Jegede
Jegede Real Investment Inc.
69 Bimini Crescent
Toronto, ON, M3N 1S1

Dear Mr. Jegede:

I, Allan Hamilton, am the owner of a copyright in various aspects of a landscape photograph that I have titled “Everything’s Waiting for You”. I created the skyline image of the City of Hamilton years ago. The first time that I ever posted it on the Internet was on my blog for Modes of Flight in early 2012 without watermarking and other precautions that I since take to protect my images. The actual post is here:

You can see that I have now edited that post with a watermarked version of “Everything’s Waiting for You”. I have edited that post after recently discovering that you have begun to use the image, without my permission, on your website:

I am writing to notify you that your unlawful use of my landscape photograph infringes upon my exclusive copyright. Accordingly, you are hereby directed to


Canada’s Office of Consumer Affairs has provided a Harmonized List of Prohibited Collection Practices, revised April 25, 2003, (the “Prohibited Practices”) that provides a minimum level of restrictions on collection agents and protections for Canadian consumers from collection agents. Any restrictions and protections contained in the list that are greater than the Prohibited Practices are also applicable to any collection activities between you and myself for the account.

Please give this very important matter the utmost attention.

For your awareness, I have begun preserving evidence of your unlawful copy and use of “Everything’s Waiting for You”. Your actions constitute copyright infringement in violation of Canadian copyright laws. If you continue to engage in copyright infringement after receiving this letter, your actions will be evidence of “willful infringement.”

I demand that you immediately cease and desist your unlawful copying and use of “Everything’s Waiting for You”, and I am providing you with two (2) options:

  1. Remove the picture “Everything’s Waiting for You” from your website and provide me with prompt written assurance, all within ten (10) days, that you will cease and desist from further infringement of my copyrighted works; or
  2. Advise me within ten (10) days of your interest to become a Modes of Flight (MOF) client and lawfully, responsibly and professionally use the image “Everything’s Waiting for You” under a licensing agreement, which will be proposed to you after you have clearly explained your image use requirements to me.

If you do not comply with this cease and desist demand within this time period, I will be entitled to use your failure to comply as evidence of “willful infringement” and seek monetary damages and equitable relief for your copyright infringement. In the event you fail to meet this demand, please be advised that I will communicate to you that I will contemplate pursuing all available legal remedies, including seeking monetary damages, injunctive relief, and an order that you pay court costs and attorney’s fees. Your liability and exposure under such legal action could be considerable.

Before taking these steps, however, I wish to give you one (1) opportunity to discontinue your illegal conduct by complying with this demand within ten (10) days.


Allan D. Hamilton

Did I bluff? Not in the slightest. I meant every freakin’ word of that correspondence, and I was fully prepared to take him to task. Two days later, he responded:

I brought this attention to my web designer who inadvertently selected the image for use without your permission.

The picture has been removed.

I apologize for inconvenience caused.

Best regards

Sure enough, the picture had been removed and I’ll continue to periodically check to make certain that it stays that way. Apparently he too is disinterested in my licensing options.

My last correspondence to him:

Much appreciated Mr. Jegede,


Allan D. Hamilton

I really am sincere too. There are those out there who are so stubborn that they’d still push the envelope. I’m very glad that this individual doesn’t seem to be one of those. I truly wish him well.

I still, gladly, give permission for some to use my work for free in certain circumstances but they must still ask. Thanks again to all those who have. I do frown on those who don’t. It’s not just about money it’s about R-E-S-P-E-C-T! Self-respect, respect for my art and respect for artists broadly. I don’t play!

I won’t divulge exactly how I discovered that my picture was being used without my prior consent but there are a number of ways for you, wherever you are in this world, to search for your images being used online. Some of them are:

• Google Images;
• Tin Eye;
• Digimarc; and
• Picscout.

No, copying images off of the Internet and using them without permission isn’t any sort of a shock in this day and age but hey, if you are a serious professional artist – new or seasoned, and you want to be respected, at the very least watermark your images.

Yes, there are other ways to protect your images. Seek them out and apply them too without broadcasting your every defense tactic.

Yes, by watermarking you’ll create detractors from your work but you can live with that.

Yes, there will be those willing to crop or otherwise edit out your watermark but you’ll cut down the number of potential abusers considerably. Most will think it’s not worth their time when they feel they can get another suitable image much cheaper and easier.

Watermark your images!

Now I have two links to provide to anyone who writes in to tell me that my big ol’ red logo is a huge distraction when viewing my art. Time will tell if I have to make another post on this matter again.

Weekly Post Challenge: “Careful”

Weekly Post Challenge: “(Extra)ordinary”

Old Havana Cuba color street urban photography

The Streets of Old Havana

So, WordPress has challenged its bloggers to post pictures of places, people or things that are (Extra)ordinary. This is my answer to that challenge, just so we’re clear!

Arboretum Virtualis | V


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