Fujifilm X100F

Photo Essay #18: The Cars of Little Italy

Being a native Montrealer, I find Ottawa's Little Italy somewhat underwhelming. It's the littlest and least Italian Little Italy I think I've ever seen!

Little Italy in Ottawa is loosely defined as Preston Street, from Carling in the south to Somerset in the north, with the surrounding blocks pulled in for good measure. It's a working-class neighbourhood that is undergoing transformation. Like all good 21st-century transformations, that means genrification. The modest, hundred-year-old single family homes are giving way to condos, or being torn down and replaced with dwellings that the traditional residents could never afford.

I spent 8 Saturday afternoons in a row in Little Italy this fall and got to know the area. One thing that struck me was the relative lack of people. There are cars everywhere, and the accoutrements that go with them: dealerships, garages and parking lots.

Cars of Little Italy 2/5
Cars of Little Italy 4/5
Cars of Little Italy 3/5
Cars of Little Italy 5/5

Late summer roundup

It feels like ages since I've posted anything. I've been shooting, but just too lazy to post and write anything compelling.

I won't deliver any compelling prose here, but rather a mixed bag of images shot late this summer. Some holiday snaps, some observational stuff, some street, some god-knows-what. Gotta keep pressing that shutter button!

People watching in Quincy Market

During a recent visit to Boston, I got some time to myself in Quincy Market when my family decided to check out the giant Sephora store there. I don't do Sephora.

So I decided to hang out (in the shade - it was hot!) and watch the world go by. Quincy Market is an interesting 80/20 blend of tourists and Boston locals at any given time (although I'm pretty sure it was 90/10 when I was there). A historic place, to be certain, but one that has been coopted by the forces of rampant commercialism that seems to have taken over the world in the last several years.

It was a glorious, sunny day, with all sorts of great light bouncing around from the nearby modern office towers and the plate-glass of the Sephora and other stores.


Smile, honey!

This is going to be AWESOME! Look at that light! What a perfect day...



Who's that guy in the background? Why is he in our shot? Dammit!


Smile, honey!

We got this one.

Now of course, not everyone was taking selfies... some were posing for their beau.

Yeah, there's a smartphone in those meathooks somewhere.

Yeah, there's a smartphone in those meathooks somewhere.

The lovely couple.

The lovely couple.

Seems a little young to be worrying about his 10,000 steps.

Seems a little young to be worrying about his 10,000 steps.

Some people pull "it" off better than others.

Some people pull "it" off better than others.

Photo essay #16: Seeing Red in Boston

It's been almost a week since we got back from vacation, and I've only just gotten around to culling and processing the far too many shots I took. A few days in Boston followed by a 7-day cruise to Bermuda and back.

Our time in Boston was blessed with sunny, warm days and great light with no haze.

Not a huge believer in traditional holiday snaps of all the touristy sites, I opted to do a little street shooting instead. Tremont Street, Quincy Market, Boston Common and the North End. Click to enlarge.

A natural capital

As soon as you leave the ceremonial areas of Ottawa (think: Parliament Hill, the Supreme Court etc.) and get away from the other obvious touristy areas (ByWard Market, The Canadian Museum of *.*, etc.) it's VERY easy to forget you're in the national capital of a G7 country.

Ottawa is easily one of the most modest capital cities you'll ever come across, and it's one that's very much in touch with nature and outdoor living. We are the second-coldest capital city in the world, which means when summer comes, we enjoy it. We do everything we can to extract the most out of summer, and depending where you look, it can be easy to forget you're smack in the center of a city!

Look into my eyes

On Pittsburgh's Mount Washington which overlooks the confluence of the Allegheny, Monongahela, and Ohio Rivers, one can find a parklet called "Point of View" which is a part of the Grand View Scenic Byway Park.

The park got its name from the bronze sculpture Point of View, by James A. West. Point of View depicts a face-to-face meeting between George Washington (yes, that George Washington) and the Seneca leader Guyasuta that took place in October, 1770.

Staring contest

If you step on the other side of the sculpture, there's a pretty decent view of the rivers and the city below.





Photo essay #15: lazy Sunday mornings

Sunday mornings in the summer are special. You can sit around the table on the patio, linger over a few cups of coffee and soak in sunshine before it starts getting too hot & harsh.

Of course, the morning light is always nice (when the sun is actually out!). My trusty X100F is never far away, and it was easy for me to get distracted from my reading by noticing how the light was hitting stuff the garden and around the house.

I was more interested in shapes and shadows today, so most everything was shot in Acros and is straight out of camera. Of course, there were a few images that just begged for colour, so they got some SOOC Velvia love.


Lawrenceville is one of the largest neighborhood areas in Pittsburgh. It is located northeast of downtown, and like many of the city's riverfront neighborhoods, it has an industrial past. And like many industrial-era neighbourhoods, it's gentrifying and becoming hipsterized.


That's bad news if you're looking for a cheap place to live, good news if you're going to eat out or are looking for live entertainment.

When travelling on business about a month ago, I got a chance to visit Lawrenceville after a day's customer meetings. Armed only with my X100F I went for a walk and sought out interesting stuff to shoot.

This is clearly a neighbourhood in transition; it will be interesting to see what it looks like in 5 years' time (or even 2).