Sunday, January 31, 2016

Caligari 3D images

Struggling with the software for a day finally paid off as the secret to manual scanning was really in there and was fairly simple. With the negatives finally in the computer, I put together a new set of stereoscopic cards based on the shoot of Caligari participants/organizers. I lost about a third of the images due to problems advancing the film (leading to superimpositions) and to some light leaks (almost certainly caused by the lab using too much force when prying open the film canister). However, many are really good. Even some of the damaged ones are cool. 

Saturday, January 30, 2016

Haunted Media

Sometimes television signals, sent decades ago, bounce off of distant celestial bodies (the moon, mars, the sun, or even the ether) and reflect back to earth as echos from the past. Most contemporary televisions are no longer equipped with antenna to pick these up, but older tvs are particularly good at this sort of reception. It is possible that programs that were never recorded by our technology, might still exist. Keep watching. 

Friday, January 29, 2016

Film developed

Got my two rolls of stereoscopic film developed. They turned out okay. I've finally started trying to scan them with the new scanner I bought just for that reason, a Canon 9000f Mark II. So far I've not figured out how to scan the entire strip. It continues to force me to scan 35mm sized pieces. Getting very frustrating.
This evening we met up with my parents at the Rainbow theatre and saw Spectre. 

Thursday, January 28, 2016

Amazing holographic-like work by Anthony McCall at MAG

I finally got around to seeing this laser light art work by Anthony McCall at the MacKenzie Art Gallery on Thursday evening. Timothy had mentioned it to me a couple of times, wondering if I'd seen it. I misunderstood what it would be like, assuming that it was small and complex. It is huge and simple but utterly elegant. We stood around it in for twenty minutes, just in awe of the beauty.
  Afterwards we went for deserts at Cafe Francais.Thanks Paul.  Again, wow. 

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Woodwork coming along slowly

I'm learning to use new tools and also teaching myself patience as I progress with my table project in the woodworking course. The group is really great; chatty, helpful, friendly and sane. 

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Abe Vigoda

Just two weeks ago we were talking about Abe Vigoda. I brought up the "Is Abe Vigoda Dead" website which hasn't changed in years. Well, today it changed. Very sad. I sort of felt comforted by his seeming immortality. 

Monday, January 25, 2016

Dial telephone modification

Exploring modifying the dial telephone I bought. It seems that getting a signal to the earpiece won't be as difficult as I'd feared. The issue now is whether to build a computer inside which will do fancy stuff (randomizing, changing when dialing, etc) or more straight forward playback (which I could do tomorrow if I had the parts). 

Sunday, January 24, 2016

Walking bridge gone?

The other day the city tore down the walking bridge over the creek near the turtle park (Balkwill Centre area). I've not heard anything about it, whether it is being replaced or just removed. It is part of the bike path but I don't know if that is enough justification to rebuild. More importantly, it cuts the distance for William to walk to high school nearly in half. 

Saturday, January 23, 2016

Caligari photo/video promotional shoot huge fun and success

I'm too tired to really write about this, but we spent about 10 hours in the studio shooting photos and video of key participants of this fall's "Caligari Project". Huge thanks to photographer Eagleclaw Thom and to Bernie with his great eye. Chrystene for all her magic in bringing people together and Michelle and Jeannie for helping put the pieces together. Here are a bunch of photos that I shot behind the scenes. The real photos are so much better. You'll see them soon in our promo videos and other material.

Michelle Brownridge

Joey Tremblay

Rowan Pantel

Jason Cullimore

Jeannie Straub

Kristine Dowler

Rudy the violinist

Christina Stojanova

Ian Campbell

Gerald Saul

Timothy Long

Fran Gilboy

Chrystene Ells

Berny Hi

Friday, January 22, 2016

Eye doctor

Had an eye doctor appointment. For the second time in a row, there was no change at all. Ron was a bit surprised. Good appointment, we also chatted about final exams and how there are no longer "exemptions" from them in high school. William had his first sit-down-and-write style of final today in math. He feels he did well. Here is my eye:

Thursday, January 21, 2016

William's first final exams

William has done two presentation finals this week (one yesterday that he feels great about, one today that he ran out of time so is more disappointed in) but tomorrow is his first sit down and be tested for a couple of hours style of final. Paul and I gave him math questions for over three hours until he was basically exhausted and then we watched "DC's Legends of Tomorrow" which was perfect for someone brain dead. 

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Colour me a Bond villain

As part of his exam presentation tomorrow, William wanted to create one of those ubiquitous adult colouring book pages. I thought it might take a long time but figured there might be a short cut to it. I found a tutorial on line and William quickly (about 2 minutes) transformed this photo I took into a ready to colour masterpiece.

Tuesday, January 19, 2016


Bought a bunch of solid oak today. Amazingly, I was able to fit it into the car. That went smoothly, but the drive around town today was a nightmare. I caught a really long train on 4th Ave which came to a complete stop for five minutes in the middle. Everywhere I went there were detours and slow congested traffic. I got to a meeting fifteen minutes late and had to leave before it was done to pick up William and then Margaret, still with the wood stretched through the car from the back of the trunk to the radio. 

Monday, January 18, 2016

Blue Monday?

Late this afternoon we were told that today is blue Monday, the most depressing day of the year. While the weather was cold, I was able to stay in most of the time, doing some writing, and cleaning my office. While it still needs modifications to the desk so that I can scan and park external drives better, the existing desk if finally clear of junk. The pens and SD cards (which outnumbered the pens) and cds (I reported on those yesterday) and little bits of paper and the dust (on my, this was out of hand) went on seemingly forever. The cleaning process was actually quite relaxing. I mixed it with reading and writing. Had perogies for supper. Now William and I are sitting here together as he prepares for his first final exams (mostly project presentations). 

Sunday, January 17, 2016

2 feet of discs

Over the past few days, partially to clear my desk and office of distracting clutter, partially to find some old missing files, and partially because I'm having a manic compulsive week, I went through all the old discs and re-imported old backups and purged the rest. In total, I've just thrown out over two linear feet of cd/dvds (no movies except extra copies of my own). 

Saturday, January 16, 2016

The Dread Line

I'm still less than half way through editing Dread Line messages from 1992-1993 but now need to plan the play back through telephones. I picked up this great early 60s dial desk top model today. I'm nervous about whether or not I can devise the necessary switching system though. I'll need some advice soon. 

Friday, January 15, 2016

Cylinder dictaphone

Was shopping for stuff for my exhibition and happened upon this 1910 Dictaphone that would record onto wax cylinders. As I doubt that anyone can supply me with blank cylinders, then the piece is just an expensive ornament. However, were there to be cylinders somewhere..... ?

Thursday, January 14, 2016

Gerda Osteneck at the UofR Club

Our friend Gerda has a great exhibition up at the faculty club, made up of about 25 or 30 collage/pastiche pieces of artwork. I think that mounting a big show like this is great; it really demonstrates the range and strength of her work. With collage, single pieces can always be strong but viewing them is such a subjective experience that it is difficult to know what the artist is really up to. Gerda's collective collages act as piece of a puzzle, creating an intriguing (and difficult) self portrait. 

Of course I SHOULD have taken a picture of Gerda but she was busy and it only occurred to me to take a snap as we were heading out the door (and as I was lecturing William on posture) so this is all I have. Sorry Gerda. 

Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Woodworking course

Tonight I started taking a woodworking course at the Balkwill Centre with Brian Gladwell. I'm pretty excited about it but I also found myself a bit nervous at the same time. I didn't get the joint creation right so I started it again but ran out of time so have taken it as homework. The group of guys taking it seem pretty nice and friendly and Brian is very supportive of my making something else on the side.

Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Transformed living room

Took William to optometrist today. His left eye is a tiny bit weaker than his otherwise perfect right eye. No glasses yet. William is vying for a monocle. Last night we rolled up the carpet to get cleaned. Living room looks strange with so much floor.
I bought a 4 tb drive to clone my old 2 tb drive onto (why do they bother making them that small?) so I can dive into my work again tomorrow. 

Monday, January 11, 2016

Christmas tree gets last laugh at our expense

Today we took down the tree. It was, as I've discussed previously, a monstrous thing and required a new expensive stand for huge stems. To keep the tree green, we needed to water it a couple of times a day but the density of the branches and the obtuse nature of the water reservoir seems to have resulted in a surprise wet spot on our wool carpet that has begun to mold!. Three hours later, we have the carpet rolled up in the garage awaiting the cleaners.