Sunday, December 28, 2008

Happy Holidays and All That

DSC_1161, originally uploaded by jake orr.

I admit to a bit of egotism on this one. Let's just get that out of the way. I mean, how often do I get to be in my own pictures? Not often enough if you ask me.

My most excellent family is really the subject of this photo though. And pretty great they are. The holidays are a convenient excuse for us to get together, eat yum yums, and generally entertain one another. This year my Aunt Carol had the lovely idea of doing a family portrait; I'd say it's been a good 10 years at least since we've actually done one of these things.

Seeing as yours truly likes taking pictures and I just happened to have the required equipment I volunteered my services for the event. Getting everyone in there required some tricksies. I used my little wireless remote which was cheap like borsch and is quite the handy little devil. It's not the kind of thing I use very often so every time it takes a little experimenting to get right. It does require line of sight so that's why you can see it in these pictures.

Hold on, something just occurred to me. If I had been really quick off the draw I could have used the remote in conjunction with the timer. That way I could have held my arm up to use the remote then, while the timer guy was counting down, I could have calmly lowered my freaking arm to get the remote out of the picture. Ah well, live and learn. Next time maybe I'll remember this little revelation. You know, if I'm lucky.

Saturday, December 20, 2008


DSC_0473, originally uploaded by jake orr.

This is my cat.

See my cat.

My cat is fat.

Yeah, she's a heffer. It's especially amusing when she lays on my mom's glass table (seen here) because her girth spreads itself out quite extraordinarily. She's a cute one. You know, if you like that kind of thing.

As a side note I will be homeless as of January 31, 2009. If you want to live with me please let me know. Also if you know of other people who would like to live with me point me their way. Thanks, I like you guys.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Great Tidings

DSC_0959, originally uploaded by jake orr.

Camera: Nikon D80
Exposure: 15 sec (15)
Aperture: f/5.6
ISO Speed: 100

Beautiful Effect: Complete Accident.

At the risk of sounding like an overused advertising gimmick, I wanted to talk about these accidental pictures that you occasionally get. The surprise photos that just look amazing.

I stumbled over this one while I was taking flash photos at our Habitat Christmas party. At one point I forgot to turn the flash on and the camera, adjusting for the low light, slowed down the shutter speed for me. It was one of those: push the shutter button, wait, wait...realize what happened, and lower the camera. The shutter finally closed and this appealing image popped up on the display. I turned the flash back on and went about my picture taking ways. When I uploaded the images to my computer and started the editing process I was pleasantly surprised by this shot that looked even better at full size.

This is just one of the many parts of photography that I find rewarding and, you know, fun. I'm not sure if you know what I mean or if this is anything more than just another pretty picture to you, but it's one of the simple little things in photography, in life, that just puts a smile on my face. I hope it can do the same for you.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Shedding Some Light

DSC_0873, originally uploaded by jake orr.

This past Tuesday featured a return of Spoken Word Open Mics at The Well (the campus bar). The event gave me a perfect opportunity to try out my new external flash. Which was amazing. Having some real lighting (other than the body flash) was a treat and I had a lot of fun experimenting with it. It's definitely going to be a learning process and things are just going to get better from here. Keep your eyes open for more flashy photographs coming your way!

Monday, December 1, 2008


DSC_0734, originally uploaded by jake orr.

Well it's finally happened. I'm late on a blog posting. What is this, number 5? I guess it had to happen sooner or later. Better sooner than later, I always say. I don't always say that. Now I'm lying too. Oh dear. We're off to a bad start today.

I went sledding this weekend! It was my friend Alix Berrington's birthday weekend and a bunch of my friendskis were up at Idabel Lake Resort for the weekend. I made it up there for a day and we made that day count!

My favorite part of the whold adventure was the sledding we got in. It may have been a little early in the season for it (read:rocks), but tons of fun was had nonetheless. I really don't make enough time for sledding. I don't think most people do, actually. Next time you have a free afternoon give me a call. We'll go sledding.

(Or we'll go slacklining. Christina and I had a late-season slacklining day yesterday and it was great! As long as you dress warm on top, your bare feet really start to get used to the cold!)

Sunday, November 23, 2008

If Wishes were Horses

DSC_0708, originally uploaded by jake orr.

Sometimes I think I should carry my camera everywhere with me.

I made a trip to Vernon today to have brunch with the momskis. Then I helped her rip out some carpet in her house. As a side note I recommend wearing gloves when ripping out carpet. On my drive to Vernon in the morning there was a gorgeous blue sky and the reflection off the lake completed an amazing image. This was the first instance of the day where I was wishing for my camera.

The second happened on the way home when there was a blazing sun tearing through clouds near the horizon during my drive home. Looking down the valley the layers of hills were slowly obscured in more and more cloudy haze. It was a beautiful picture.

It's times like these when all I want is my camera. It doesn't matter that I was trying to make it to a wine seminar I was doing for work and that time was getting short. I just wanted to capture it. Either picture would have made a fantastic blog photo for the week. Well, these things happen. Maybe I've learned some lessons. Or maybe I'll just be happy capturing amazing sights like these in my mind. I'll just have to share them using words rather than photos.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Yeah, That's Nice

Have you ever been to Kal Park before? It's in Vernon and if you haven't been there, you should go. I'll show you around.

I worked in Kalamalka Provincial Park one summer and walking around that park day after day was amazing. I had so many beautiful sights and lovely experiences. Working with my oldest friend Dave was also a great part of my time there. We had days where we would take a break and climb off the trail into spots I'd never seen before even after spending so much of my childhood there. After we got to a comfy grassy spot we'd just hang out, have a beer, and relax. Yeah. Those were good days.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

When Push Comes to Shove

DSC_0688, originally uploaded by jake orr.

"If there's a bustle in your hedge-row, don't be alarmed now" - Led Zepplin

I was thinking the other day about how I've been hearing a lot lately about the weather getting people down. It's that in between season right now. Right at the end of fall, but getting close enough to winter to start seeing snow on the hillsides and getting the occasional flurry that doesn't last. Fall. Winter. Should we call this Finter? Wall? How about Falter? I think that seems more appropriate.

It was a grey, Falter morning and I was on my way to the bus stop when I noticed a tree deep in the throws of seasonal change. The leaves were an amazingly rich, red and some had started to dry up and fall to the ground. These brown, dead leaves brought interesting contrast to the image and helped me to appreciate the stunning red leaves all the more. It's little things like this that can help you to appreciate the beauty of the season even under its grey blanket. The lovely sights are still there; you've just got to look a little harder to see them.

This revelation has opened my eyes to even more spectacular sights. Next time you're out on a dreary fall day have a look around. What can you see? Maybe there are some brightly coloured trees dropping their artwork onto the grass. You might be treated to clouds rolling down the hills, creeping between tree and houses, and gripping entire hillsides in their grey tendrils. You might be riding on a bus on a drizzly day and when you look out the window you notice that you're looking through an intricate web of criss crossing water lines and droplets. There really is so much beauty to see. You've just got to look for it.

So I was reminded, thanks to Kaare's comment on my last post, that not everyone's going to be able to come see my showing at Starbucks and some of you might be curious

which photos I'm going to be showing. They are all pictures people have seen, but I'd like to maintain at least a modicum of suspense for the showing itself. I'll tell you what though, I'll make sure to take pictures of the show itself or at the very least let you know which shots I used after they're up at the 'Bucks. I hope everyone understands and can contain their irresistible excitement. I know you can do it.

Until next week, stay happy!

Sunday, November 2, 2008


blogthrillermontageborders, originally uploaded by jake orr.

Version Two. I know, I'm surprised it happened so fast too. I link photos to this guy from my flickr account and as I was about to do just that this time - what do you know! I find myself staring at a friendly little button offering me an option for the very task I'd been looking to complete: Post to a Blog. Hey, neat! Long story short, well maybe it's too late for that, but nevertheless here we are at blogger. One of the easily compatible blog options for flickr. And hey, we all like the smooth option, don't we? Fingers crossed I won't be switching it up any time soon. Here we go!

Hey I've got a bit of exciting news for some of you. Well really it's just me who's excited about it, but hey maybe you'll get a rise out of the situation too. This coming January I'm booked at the Rutland Starbucks to show my photography for a little while! I have known about this for a while, but my recent excitement has been that I've picked out the 10 photos I'm going to be showing and I've got them in being printed and mounted as we speak. That means I'll be ready to go soon! And I'll have some photos printed and I'm sure a lot of you know what a rare occurrence that is for me. If I get any more specifics on the event I'll be sure and let all of you know just a soon as I can.

That's it for this week. Until next time I want each and every one of you to go out and do one thing that puts a big, silly grin on your face. Like putting on a new pair of socks.