Wednesday, December 25, 2013
Wednesday, December 18, 2013
Wednesday, December 11, 2013
Sunday, December 8, 2013
Here's a couple of pictures my father took of the lighted fountain at Centennial Square in Victoria in 1974. I assume they were taken at the same time as the set-ups look identical.
Here's a picture I took of the fountain tonight during the Great Freeze of 2013.
Here's a picture I took of the fountain tonight during the Great Freeze of 2013.
Wednesday, November 27, 2013
Wednesday, November 20, 2013
Wednesday, November 13, 2013
Wednesday, November 6, 2013
The handsome guys of Platis Electric pose for Dad. Dad was not a professional photographer, but occasionally he must have taken some pictures as a favour for friends, or as a commission, as there are a number of pictures of the Platis trucks and offices in the collection, as well as other businesses. This would have most likely been a favour, as Tommy Platis, second from the right, was a friend of Dad's.
Wednesday, October 30, 2013
My father worked as an electrician for the Protestant School Board of Greater Montreal. Sometime in the 1960s (probably 1965) there was a fire in one of the schools and Dad documented the damage. This is an interesting shot, as he arrived while firemen were finishing up. This is the only shot he got of them in action.
Wednesday, October 16, 2013
Wednesday, September 25, 2013
Dad did a few trick shots in his day, these being two examples. I don't know exactly how he did this, I assume a double exposure. Dad had a little spot in the house where he could rig up a small shooting area with black cloth and a couple of lights, then he'd turn the bathroom into a darkroom. The subject of these photos is my maternal grandmother, my mother's mother. My mom's family lived in England, and this was taken in 1962 during Granny's only trip to Canada. The odd thing is that these are the only pictures I've found of her visit.
Wednesday, September 18, 2013
Our family owned a cottage at Lake Wentworth, Quebec, for a few years in the 1960s. At the end of summer, the trees would change from green to a luscious panorama of reds and yellows. That's the family car; a 1962 Valiant. And yes, it has the latest in modern automotive technology; a push-button automatic transmission. That's a feature that really caught on, eh?
Wednesday, September 4, 2013
Traditionally, the Victoria transit system makes changes to its service on Labour Day, and 1974 was no exception as the new 26 Crosstown route was introduced, and service to the Gordon Head area was revamped. While much adjusted since then, the basic routing on the Crosstown and Gordon Head service remains to this day. This shot was taken on Shelbourne Street at McKenzie Avenue in front of the University Heights Mall. The greenhouses you can see on the other side of the street through the buses windows are long gone now, replaced by condos. Serving the then-new 28 Majestic route in Gordon Head was venerable bus #794, a 1973 GM "New Look" diesel bus (also known as a GM Fishbowl). It only served Victoria streets 2 years before being transferred to the Vancouver fleet where it served out its days.
Wednesday, August 28, 2013
So far, I've been mostly going through my father's slides. He liked shooting slides back in the day, because he found a place that would not only develop his slides, but also make a negative out of them, something that was pretty rare. He liked this because he had a dark room in the basement, and would make his own prints, but he could have the slides handy to show to family and friends. Many of the slides are 40 years old, some even 50. Amazingly, many are still in great shape. However, a few look like this 1974 photo of a surfer at Long Beach: A little on the pinkish side. But with a few clicks of Photoshop, it looks like it was taken yesterday.
Wednesday, August 21, 2013
Dad took this picture of a mosquito on his arm while we camping at Schoen Lake in 1977. How do you get a shot like that? Well, apart from a whole lot of patience, you need a whole bunch of gear. Here's a shot I took of Dad getting that shot.
Wednesday, August 14, 2013
This picture represents a bit of a mystery. This is a street in Charlottetown in early 1971. I think City Hall is on the left. The mystery is, what was Dad doing there in the middle of Winter? We think he was looking for work. My parents had decided that it was time to leave Montreal as a result of the October Crisis, and he applied to a number of places across the country. We made a trip to Calgary around this time to check things out, but he went to Charlottetown by himself.
Thursday, August 1, 2013
Today would have been Dad's 90th birthday, so it's time for another one of his self-portraits. It's 1964, and dad has set up the camera on a timer for a family portrait. Note his unerring sense of timing as he blinks just as the shutter goes off. Also, this is clearly where my fascination with
dolls action figures began. This is probably the earliest photo of the five of us: my parents, my two sisters and myself.
And this one, not taken by my father, is probably the last one taken of the five of us, from Christmas 1998, a couple of years before he passed away.
Wednesday, July 24, 2013
In 1971, my cousin Rob graduated from the Royal Military College of Canada in Kingston. Mom, Dad and I drove own from Montreal for the graduation ceremony. Dad took the opportunity to take his camera along. I remember that at one point in the ceremony, probably depicted in the picture below, the graduates were asked to step forward. Not understanding that the rest of the group were continuing on in their studies, I blurted out, "Hey, look at all the guys who flunked!" The fellow sitting beside us roared with laughter.
Wednesday, July 17, 2013
This might be a picture that I took with my Dad's camera. I have two reasons for thinking this: a) I've always been drawn to receding angles and lines in my photos, and I'm always looking for that when I'm shooting buildings and objects; and b) whoever took this shot was low to the ground. I may have been tall for my age, but not as tall as my Dad, at least not at that age. Or I just made him kneel. That's not out of the question, either.
Wednesday, July 10, 2013
When I was a kid, we used to see these small snakes in the yard all the time. We don't anymore. We usually only saw then in the garden or lawn, but I remember this one. It slithered along the fence, and Dad ran for his camera. He was quite proud of the shot with the tongue sticking out. And rightly so.
Thursday, June 27, 2013
Wednesday, June 19, 2013
Puffins are rare in these parts, so rare that I've never seen one in the wild. But obviously, there were a few hanging around Willows Beach in 1971 where Dad took this photo. Or perhaps not. A reader believes these puffins are from the old Sealand of the Pacific marine attraction, and I think she might be right. I found some other pictures from the same period from Sealand, and they will appear here one day in the future.
Wednesday, June 12, 2013
Wednesday, May 29, 2013
Wednesday, May 22, 2013
Who ya gonna call? In 1971 along Government Street in front of the Empress Hotel in Victoria, if you were going to call someone, you'd plunk your dime (yes, only a dime) into this nifty looking pay phone. And look, kids! It has one of them old-timey rotary dials!
Wednesday, May 15, 2013
Wednesday, May 8, 2013
Anyone want to guess when this picture was taken? Why, yes. 1971. How could you tell? 1971 was the 100th anniversary of British Columbia's entry into Confederation and Victoria was all decked out in Anniversary decorations. Dad took this pic of the Ledge in the fall of 1971. Compared to the picture below that I took of the Ledge last summer, not much has changed. The trees are bigger, of course. But the other change I see is that vehicle traffic is no longer allowed along the walkway right in front of the main stairs.
Dad is trying his hand at a close-up. But what exactly has he photographed here? Turns out it's a 1964 silver dollar commemorating the...