Exporail Re-Visited (May 29, 2016)


This was my second visit to Exporail, and I’m still in love with this place. My initial visit was on August 1, 2015, almost a year ago. For my previous visit please see Exporail – Awaken Your Inner Child.

Exporail – Awaken Your Inner Child


Exporail (www.exporail.org), the largest railway museum in Canada, is located on the south shore of Montreal in the town of Saint-Constant, Quebec. On Saturday, August 1st, my friend Elizabeth and I paid this place a visit, and we were not disappointed – after 5 hours we were still wandering around the complex poking our noses into the various exhibits and going for many rides on a fully operation Montreal streetcar. WOW! Our inner children had a ball there.

Montreal Steetcar

John Molson Steam Engine Reproduction

Other Trains & Exhibits

Freeman Patterson/André Gallant Photography Course – Day 3


Day #3 on the Freeman Patterson and André Gallant course, and my anxiety has just about dissipated, but that is probably because I have become brain-dead. The constant flow of information is like the water from a fire hose. And then there is forcing myself to be creative and to “think out of the box”. I am not used to taking photographs in this manner, and although sometimes I feel overwhelmed, I am so glad that I made this decision. I have a long way before I can consider myself to be “fluent” with visual design, but I feel that I am starting to get it.

Today we had an opportunity to practice some of the things we learned yesterday and we learned more about visual organization and arrangement. There are no rules on this training – just guidelines and common sense. For example, we purposefully overexposed images to see what would happen, create images with no centre of interest, and purposefully jiggle the camera during a shot. And I’m sure we have all broken many other “rules of photography”.

It was raining heavily here most of today, so instead of going out, Freeman and André created some ideas for photography indoors.

This typewriter has nothing to do with the ideas but I saw it sitting on the floor and I loved the contrast between the harshness and weight of the typewriter against the warm, smoothness of the floor. Like I wrote, I think I’m starting to get it!

Typewriter on Floor (August 12, 2015) [_DSC5008].jpg

Eastern Ontario Train Museum


A friend and I, both lovers of trains, recently visited the Eastern Ontario Train Museum in Smith Falls, Ontario. We picked a great day for this visit – it was overcast and cold – we were the only visitors that day and so we had the run of the museum. I have such fond memories of trains, especially the old steam engines. I spent much of my youth living next to the main train line in the Laurentians near Val David, and when we heard a train coming my friends and I would drop everything and head over to the tracks to see the train chugging by. And what kid from my generation didn’t put pennies on the tracks when the train went by – the goal was to see who could end up with the flattest penny. Sometimes we had a special treat – one of the regular engineers lived near my home and the train would stop at the local crossing to let him off at the end of his shift. We could stand next to the steam engine and watch the wheels spin as it fought for traction when it pulled away. Passenger or freight, it was awesome.

What Did I Do this Summer?


Do you remember returning to school every September and one of your first assignments was to write an essay on what you did during the summer? If only they had digital cameras back then – I could have shown my teacher what I did during the summer!

I typically carry my camera around with me and during this past summer I have captured some photos that I felt were worth keeping. These were photos taken while visiting friends, boating, riding my motorbike around the countryside, going kayaking, visiting nature areas, going for walks … in other words, many of the things I did this summer. I hope you enjoy viewing them as much as I enjoyed visiting these places and taking the photos.