2011 Deck – Week 49

I think that Christmas Carols (and Christmas music in general) lends to the “feel” of Christmas as much as many of the other traditions associated with the Day and the Season.  Whether its Carollers on the street or in the church, the chorus of voices or the clarity of the soloist singing those traditional carols (or the new songs) helps get me in the Christmas Mood.

This was a photo taken at the annual Festival of Carols held at the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception (Brickdam Cathedral), it is one of the few times I’ve attempted higher ISOs on the Canon Digital Rebel T1i, although there’s a fair amount of noise it wasn’t too bad for the shot, and I did a bit of noise reduction in Topaz  🙂

Christmas Carolling

One Year

One year ago, I wrote and posted my first official post on this blog, I am not counting the “Hello World” that Word press starts me off with.  It might seem morbid to some that the first post was about the death of my maternal grandmother, and a photo of the same, but to me it’s not only the scenes that capture our eyes as photographers that may appeal to viewers, but the feelings and emotions that we can convey or arouse from others viewing our work.

One year has passed, and I have had “ups and downs” in blogging, recently a lot of “downs”, time seems to be an elusive creature, and I have not put as much into the blogging or reading blogs as I think I should.  But I think that I have kept up pretty well, and The Deck project certainly gives it some impetus.

Recently there have been other deaths as well, not a good way to celebrate one year of blogging, but it is what it is.  My daughter recently lost one of her teachers from last year, Teacher Gillian, and only this week we lost “Mr. Terrific”, Flavio Commacho, who was very instrumental in the conversion of our system of measurements in Guyana from Imperial to Metric, I remember from when I was a little boy listening to “Swing to Metric” on the radio (yes, radio.  Televisions weren’t quite the thing as yet)

Also this month we lost Sister Rose Magdalene, there is so much to be said for her, and there is a lovely Tribute page on Facebook.  What I remember of Sr Rose is her love for music and pageantry.  She wrote, she sang, she danced, she lived and loved with music in her heart.  I always will remember the special Christmas mass at the old Sacred Heart Church (now burnt down), the traditional readings were replaced by a pageant telling the story of the birth of the Christ child, and at the heart of it all was Sr Rose.  This photo in today’s blog was taken at the memorial mass held in Guyana at the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception (Brickdam Cathedral) for her, the people in it are a few of the members of the Marigold Children’s Choir that she formed many years ago.

This was meant to be a simple (hopefully artistic) photograph, but for me, it has a depth of emotion also.

The music died...

2011 Deck – Week 13

Another tough week, one day of actual photography, and even that was “forced”.  Yesterday, another blogger whom I follow, Bob Zeller, posted a blog along the lines of an award for “Versatile Bloggers”.  While I don’t see myself that way I was very honoured to be included in the company of he other bloggers in Bob’s List, if you get a chance check that out, quite impressive.  I will follow this up in my next post;  hopefully, I can be as magnanimous as Bob was  🙂

This week’s Deck photo was originally to be of my Alma Mater, Saint Stanislaus College (a High School actually), but I was more taken by my images of the church that I attend.  They are both on the same street, Brickdam, and Nikhil and I walked it looking for things to photograph.

This is the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception, seat of the Bishop of Georgetown, His Lordship Francis Alleyne OSB, and is commonly referred to as Brickdam Cathedral.  It is the central church of the Roman Catholic Diocese in Guyana and my parish for all of my life, although I now live outside the geographical area of the parish, we still attend mass there.  It is bordered by Brickdam, Hadfield Street, Camp Street and Pollard Place, the current concrete structure replaced the original wooden structure that was destroyed by fire decades ago.  Although it is not photographed as often as the St George’s Cathedral, it has its own appeal and beauty.

Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception

Some people may notice, while others may not, this image, while not a true HDR image (I only used one exposure) was processed in Nik’s HDR Efex to get the most out of both the clouds and the building, I tried to be as subtle as I could without losing the detail that I wanted.

St George’s Panorama – June 2010

Georgetown Guyana, St George's Cathedral

I have always been fascinated by Panoramic photographs, and I’ve tried a few over the last few years, this is the first one since I started by site or the blog.  We had an opportunity to go to the top of the new NBS head office (under construction) and take a few photographs, and I thought I would try a panorama from up there.  So far it is also the only thing I have processed from that day, very bad of me, but time is a very scarce commodity it seems.

Saint George’s Cathedral is probably one of the most photographed buildings in Guyana, it is not only a beautiful piece of Architecture, but is also imposing in it’s surroundings.  It is an island unto itself, surrounded by a “roundabout” (North Road splits and reconverges on the other side), it faces oncoming traffic from four sides (if you count Church Street) and is one of the tallest wooden structures in the world.

Some people like these wide panoramas, some don’t.  I think that the problem with wide panoramas is that there should be something eye-catching in it or about it that will make it more than just a bunch of images stitched together.  I have a few that are not spectacular, simply because it just looks sort of plain, but I like them anyway.  This Panorama, however, is punctuated by the St George’s Cathedral and makes it more appealing than some of the others that I have tried.  It is a compilation of twenty images taken in “portrait orientation” to get the most of the sky and foreground.  Each photo was taken at the widest on the lens (18mm) at 1/320 shutter speed and f/10 aperture, even though Canon has a stitching software I actually prefer Adobe Photoshop’s stitching (don’t tell anyone, since I am not a big Photoshop fan and most people know it).

If you click on the image above it will carry you to the site where (depending on your monitor) you can see a larger version.

Before Our God

Philomena CorreiaI have come to realize that the photographs I take are an expression of my life and the events, people, places and things that affect and have an effect on me.  Few things can effect changes in a person as drastically as the death of someone close.  In times like this I realize that while I like taking photographs I can never seem to to capture the emotions of a scene as many of the professionals can.  I can’t explain it, but I “had” to take photographs at my Grandmother’s funeral, it wasn’t something I wanted to do, or even preferred to do, I rationalized it as a job that would help keep me occupied, but it was more than that.

To my Grandmother, may she rest in peace.