Hanging out with squares


You could say I've been making the [re]acquaintance of squares ...
as silly as it sounds, Instagram might be to blame.  Which won't make much sense to
non-users so to clarify:  Instagram, the online mobile photo-sharing & networking service,
has the distinctive feature of confining photos to a square format.
If you want to post there your image must fit into a square
so if you didn't shoot it that way to begin with, it's resized to fit.
Remember the Polaroids of old?

Framing within the rectangular 4:3 aspect ratio almost exclusively for most of my life
left me, at first, fighting for elbow room within this equal-sided confined space.

But before too long, I wondered what was so bad about a little size challenge anyway? 
Surely this leap wasn't going to be as great as dumping my film cameras
in trade for digital?
That was enormously difficult.

Fast forward a year or so ...

Forward through a whole lot of practice/editing time
while commuting on the ferries,

forward through lots of "window seat" opportunities to try this, try that, ask what if ...
Alternative worlds were tried on - my app-aholic time, I called it.
It took a while to sort of tweak my viewpoint
but making the subject matter fit into a




finally became not such a conscious struggle.

So what's come from all this?
A hefty file of ferry photos for one ...
During all weathers, ranges of light, in transit & not;
daytime, mid-darkness to ethereal at midnight; 
looking up, behind, out, across the rails or beyond -
laden with tourists in the high season,  deliciously empty & silent in the off ...

and at times, strangely decorated ...
My island wandercloth became a textile installation afloat
near Waldron Island
[yup, there's an app for that].

Somewhere along this mobile photography journey I began to follow an info-packed blog
called, "Art of Mob" compiled by Geri Centonze.  Wowza.  App reviews, tutorials,
fab interviews ... chock full.  I noticed Geri ran the occasional *challenge* on Instagram.
Planes, Trains and Automobiles  [any mode of rapid transit] was the chosen subject recently
so I thought, what the heck, I've got ferries ...
Twas the rope composition which floated me onto the  showcase
but I want to mention that I couldn't have done it without 
Distressed FX texture app ...
*  thank you  *

Now it seems the whole square option is sneaking its way into other aspects
of my once rectangular life.
'splash' went decidedly that direction without hesitation ...

and today's gathering of leaves got into the act ...
during the lineup for the seasonal portrait
they arranged themselves
just so.


National Black Dog Day


October 1st is  National Black Dog Day.
It's a special day devoted to highlighting the plight
of black dogs in shelters around the country.

Around our place, EVERY day is black dog day
but to put a special note on it since
black dogs are notoriously difficult to re-home,
a warm hearted backward glance might be in order ...
an ode to some lovely mugs & the humans they owned.

~ archive photo, photographer unknown ~

~ Mary Miles Minter, 1917 ~

~ from George Eastman House ~

~ Queen Victoria, by W. and D. Downey, Getty Images ~

~ cabinet card from Germany, c. 1915 ~

~ Jet ~
[ 7/21/42 - 10/18/49 ]

Jet was an Alsatian who assisted in the rescue of 150 people
trapped under blitzed buildings.  Born in Liverpool, he served with the
Civil Defence Services of London and was awarded the Dickin Medal
and the RSPCA's Medallion of Valor for his rescue efforts.
He trained at the War Dogs School in Gloucester at 9 months in anti-sabotage
work and relocated to London.  Cpl. Wardle and Jet were the first handler and dog
to be used in an official capacity in Civil Defence rescue duties.

~ archive photo, Harris-Ewing ~

~ vintage photo, photographer unknown ~

~ Duchess of Fife with daughters, c. 1908 ~

~ Edwardian lady with her dog, French postcard ~

~ girl & her dog, Stockholm, Sweden, by Wilhelm Lundberg, c. 1865 ~

~ Helen Keller, archive photo ~

Whenever it is possible, my dog accompanies me on a walk or ride or sail.
I have had many dog friends - huge mastiffs, soft-eyed spaniels, 
wood-wise setters, and honest, homely bull terriers.
At present the lord of my affections is one of these bull terriers.  He has
a long pedigree, a crooked tail and the drollest "phiz" in dogdom.
My dog friends seem to understand my limitations, and always
keep close beside me when I am alone.  I love their affectionate ways
and the eloquent wag of their tails.
~ Helen Keller

~ Malvina Longfellow by Bassano, 1918


~ our black dog, Quinn ~

... grateful you came home with us, girlie.
You may be a handful 
and a training challenge, to say the least,
but you're all heart and smart as a whip.
It's only your fears holding you back ...
same as with the rest of us.


Can't adopt a black dog today?
That's ok ... it can be a big decision.
Here's something easy: