Monday, February 27, 2012

No Drinking from Urinals?

Is this what the sign means? No drinking water from urinal? Guys, we know how urinal water flushes correct? The water runs against the back wall of the urinal, making it impossible to collect the water. Even if one had the desire to get a cup of water from a urinal, how would one accomplish this task? I'd like to see someone try. Maybe this sign is a dare? "We dare you to try to get water from this thing!!"

Also, most 'No' signs are usually put up because there's a problem to begin with, or at least a potential for a problem?  No skateboarders, do not smoke here, no parking, etc.  Is there a problem with people trying to extract water from urinals, especially when there's a sink just 2 feet away? I don't know......

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Complex Canvas for Corporate Graffiti Art

I noticed professional graffiti art on the side of a building next to an empty lot, nothing special.  Looking closely, I noticed it was Corporate Graffiti, for Scion cars.  

As I backed up, I noticed the random wall was actually the side of a small, boutique Scion dealership downtown.  Makes sense.  But I noticed something unusual about the building wall.....

The wall is totally uneven!!  The bottom is almost 2 feet out further than the rest of the wall!!  But from the side, you would never no it.  Pretty good job corporate graffiti artist guy or gal!! Even the red brick was coloured in (see other pics).  Notice the complex brick pattern that makes up the main part of the car drawing!  That's not easy to do. At least I don't think it is........

Vancouver Shoefiti

Shoe flinging or shoe tossing has it's own name now, shoefiti, as in graffiti with shoes.  I took this shot because I liked the way the shoes were silhouetted by a dramatic and cloudy sky. 

My Wife, the Queen, and Her Eyes

I've always admired my wife's ability to paint with a brush; whereas me as a photographer, I can only paint with light.  I took drafting and commercial design, and I'm a CS5 designer, but to hand paint or draw, it's still magic to me.  While a painter works at adding detail to a canvas, a photographer usually tries to remove or crop detail out from his or her digital canvas. 

After taking this picture, I cropped, blurred, removed colour, and added a heavy vignette along the parimeter, all in an effort to isolate and focus the viewer's visual onto the Queen of Hearts' eyes.  My wife is trying to do the same thing, but doing so by adding detail and focus onto those same eyes.  I like this picture because my wife's body, head and hand all create this frame in which we see through to get to the eyes of the Queen.

Rainbow after the Rain

After a solid 3 hour ride in the beautiful sun, I started heading home. Just then, it clouded over in minutes and started to pour rain soon after.  I stopped under a big tree hoping it would stop shortly, and it did after only a few minutes.  As quickly as it clouded over, the sun burst through the clouds as soon as it stopped raining and a rainbow appeared.  I quickly took this shot as another rider blew past me.   And notice the rainbow coloured houses too. Perfect timing.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Gas Pump Skeleton

Like most organic structures, even gas pumps have a skeleton, an outer skin or covering, and inner organs that makes it all functional. Seeing it all striped naked and skeletonized, it looks sad and forlorn.  Yes, it is but a machine.  It doesn't have feelings.   Unlike juke-boxes, nobody really collects old gas pumps. Good bye 1960-70's gas pump. 

Real Life Munster's Home as Your Neighbour?

I was riding through a heritage home area in Vancouver (Commercial Drive and Hastings) and was appreciating the 100 year old homes. The above home is very typical of this area: beautifully and tastefully restored.  I even like the original brick/stone street surface (although it's not fun riding over).

Another example in the same neighbourhood, below. See the beautifully restored home on the left? Now look over to the ready-to-be-condemned-home on the right. It's almost as if it's made to look bad on purpose, like for a movie or something.  If this isn't a joke, imagine this was your neighbour? Man oh man!! I wouldn't even know what to say.......

Before taking this picture, I had to wait for a group of high school kids to move, as they too were looking at the Munster home, pointing, laughing, in shock, and taking pictures......

Orange and Green

I've been seeing orange and green in combination everywhere lately.  Even my recent post of the whale painting on a dumpster; if you notice the company logo, it's orange and green.  Many sports teams from basketball to hockey use these colours in combination as well.  It works most of the time. 

The picture above, at first I didn't notice anything weird about the matching colours. But then I realized even though the colour scheme is similar, the truck doesn't belong to the retail store that it's in front of.  The truck is carrying fruit, and the store sells meat. It's just a coincidence that their colours match.  The next building over also happens to be an even brighter and deeper orange. The building next to it? Yes, a faded green.......

Then, on my way home at the end of my bike riding afternoon, what do I notice near my house? Yes, of course! An orange and green house!!!  

What's next?! We shall see....

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

25' x 40' Canvas

I love street art.  Too bad Bansky doesn't live in Vancouver.  I'd love to see his stuff around town. You may recognize this large mural from the picture of the urban farm posting, just to the top right of the image.  But from this angle (low and looking up) it looks different doesn't it? I tried taking it with my other camera (Panasonic FX50) but I just couldn't get the right feel, so I took a few with my iPhone and the Hipstamatic program and voila!! I got what I was looking for.

Whale found on a Trash Bin?

I love traveling through backstreets and alleys to find things to take pictures of.  I noticed this hand-painted dumpster in a downtown alley.  Since the brand sticker is on top of the painting, I'm to assume they either commissioned it, or found it too beautiful to paint over.  Either way, don't you think all dumpsters should have paintings on it? Or at least a vinyl wrap, like they do now with post boxes and other ugly public devices and monuments? Another way to beautify our environment, even if it's just the alley.

Is Astoria Hotel next to a Farm?

I love riding my bike and taking pictures.  It's the best way to see one's own city, hands down.  You can hit 20-30 spots in an afternoon, something you can't do with a car, public transit, or walking. It's also a good way to see things we may never see if we stayed in our cars. An example?

I've driven past this spot a hundred times in my life, and I've never noticed this urban garden next to the Astoria Hotel.  No, not the Waldorf-Astoria Hotel in New York, but the Astoria Hotel in the DTES of Vancouver , the poorest neighbourhood in Canada.  The Solefood Urban Farm Project has done a really good job making this a functional farm, as you can see by their website.  

Photographically speaking, I took this picture to emphasize the extreme juxtaposition between these two worlds, even though this contrast is no longer as such in more and more major cities around the world. I took some pictures without having to shoot through the fence, but the fence really worked photographically as a cool border between the enclosed city garden and the reality of the DTES on the outside.

Monday, February 13, 2012

Fire Hydrant slash Drinking Fountain?

I think this is a totally cool idea.  Shouldn't every fire hydrant have one of these on top?  Seriously?