Tag Archives: painting



“Snow was falling,
so much like stars
filling the dark trees
that one could easily imagine
its reason for being was nothing more
than prettiness.”
― Mary Oliver

This will be my final post for 2016. My year ends much as it began, on the local trails, camera in hand. Today, I hiked about 6 km on snow packed trails, not meeting another hiker. The trek began bright but hazy and mild and ended two hours later, somewhat cooler with a fairly consistent snowfall, which inspired this final post.

It’s good to have some tools at your disposal. In this case, the ‘concept’ of an image capturing a December snow squall in the pine wood lot behind my house did not quite render my vision as a photo.

That’s where the ‘tools’ come in and running the image through the Topaz Impression plug-in yielded the desired results. It brought out the warm colours of the trees that I saw initially and enhances the nice blur of the heavy snow, a slightly washed-out effect, which is what I was after.

This has become a go-to for me if a photo does not convey the ‘feel’ I was after. My ‘impression’ of the scene. So, since I’m not a painter, I can be a photo-impressionist, and I like that. Wishing you a Happy 2017.

Till then,



“Pink Dogwood Blossoms” – Ancaster, Ontario

Pink Dogwoods

“A fine work of art – music, dance, painting, story – has the power to silence the chatter in the mind and lift us to another place.”
― Robert McKee

I could not resist posting one more dogwood image before the season passes. The image above was transformed into a painterly image using Topaz Impressions software in Photoshop. I can’t paint well and this plug-in allows me to create images in such a way as to satisfy the painter trapped inside me.

For me, it’s about how the image or moment made me feel and I try to convey that feeling through my images, be it a photograph or, as in this case, a painting or likeness to one.

How do you feel about this treatment?

Nikon D800
Tamron SP AF 17-50mm f/2.8 XR Di II LD As
 @ 32mm
1/60 sec, f/4.0, ISO 200

For more images like this, please visit my Facebook page:
or my website (some images available for purchase)

If we were having a coffee…

Stouffville Reservoir in Spring

“All thoughts, secret or spoken, belong in a coffee table book written in Braille, so you can really feel the emotions.”
― Jarod Kintz

I decided to start into this forum with my standard quote style. I find looking up suitable quotes to match my photos makes me think about the photo and the emotions it invokes in me and thus, enhances the image. And, I added a photo above of a local reservoir that I did some artistic work on a few weeks back

Which brings me back to the original topic and my reasons for blogging in the first place: Blogging provides me a simple forum to share my photos and my thoughts with an audience who tend to be more creative than the average populace.

I’ve started small and have been pleasantly  surprised to be ‘troll free’, thus far. I tend to be quite open in my posts, trying to stick to a narrative style, as if I was sitting down with friends and being quite transparent about the events and processes that enabled me to make the photo in the first place. I’m hoping to engage in a larger group of people with similar passions to mine, and that has been successful. My feeling is that if I like certain elements of photography, surely there must be a handful of others out there like me?

The experience has also helped me to realize that, while it would be nice to make a few bucks from my photos, at least enough to support improving my work, it’s been more about creating works that bring enjoyment and inspiration to others. Were it not for a few inspirational photographers  who shared their thoughts and techniques freely, I may not be at the place I’m at now.

The reason I started on this journey has many facets, the first being explained above and the second is for me to develop a daily discipline to create and share a photograph, every single day, whether I feel inspired or not. The ultimate goal is to publish this daily journey so a larger audience can enjoy the experience too. I’m also enjoying reading the works of so many talented poets and writers. They are all inspirations to me to keep improving.

I’m looking forward to future #weekendcoffeeshare chats.

For more images like this, please visit my Facebook page:
or my website (some images available for purchase)


“Solitaire near Glasgow”

Solitaire near Glasgow

“To my mind, a picture should be something pleasant, cheerful, and pretty, yes pretty! There are too many unpleasant things in life as it is without creating still more of them.”
― Pierre-Auguste Renoir

Happy Easter!

I wanted to try something new, something that satisfied the creative in me. I love paintings and have many friends who are extraordinary painters. My gift is photography, which offers me a similar outlet, but rather than spending time in front of the canvass, I spend my time walking in the trails, forests, and cities, always looking for interesting scenes to photograph.

This past week I was working with some of what I would deem my ‘secondary’ files. The images that I had envisioned, but did not satisfy me as I processed them. I ran these images through various filters and plugins, looking for the ‘vision’ of the photo to emerge. In this case, one of my favourite ‘solitaires’ or lone trees.

On the day I made the photo, the sky was filled with soft and interesting clouds, the wheat had just emerged to greet the early spring air, while patches of snow still remained in low areas. The photo alone did not meet my expectations, that is, until I ran it through one of my filters to create the wonderful image above. As I’ve said before, I wish I could paint, but since I can’t, at least I can create the image as I would have painted it, if I could.

Nikon D300
Tamron 70-200 mm f/2.8 @ 70 mm
1/250 sec, f/8.0, ISO 250

For more images like this, please visit my Facebook page:
or my website (some images available for purchase)

“Blazing Hillside”

"Blazing Hillside"

Part two of my November 2014 hike. As I said in yesterday’s post, I was actually hiking to a small grove of trees that I had photographed successfully in the past. The light conditions where not good in that location but it was spectacular on my hike in and out of the forest.

The photo above is testament to that. The late afternoon sun was close to setting but bright enough to make everything it touched glow with light. Doing vertical pan photo abstractions has become a favourite technique for me and the results can be quite astounding and unpredictable.

This grove of planted pines was found along one of the many paths leading through the Walkers Woods Conservation Area north of Pickering, Ontario. There was still snow on the ground from the previous day’s snowfall as well as a smattering of bright orange oak leaves. It seemed the elements all came together in this photo. When I got home and previewed my photos it looked like the whole hillside was on fire, thus the title of this piece. Many people have commented that it looks like a painting and I would agree. I am very pleased at the results and I hope you enjoy it as much as I do.

Nikon D300
Tamron 17-50mm f/2.8 @26mm
1/4sec @ f/32, ISO 200