Category Archives: My Thoughts


As part of their final assignments, I asked each of my students to take a photo that captures what it means to be a teenager in 2018 (I hope to share these somehow). So I decided to do a similar thing – to take a photo that captures how I am feeling as a teacher as we start 2018.

This is the photo I took – I used the double exposure feature on my camera to do it. The more I look at it, the more elements I find that reflect my feelings. And although I normally don’t look as troubled as I do in this photo (at least I don’t think I do), it accurately expresses how I feel about where we currently are.


Also posted in Black + White, Everyday Life, People, School Tagged |

Observations from a Mall Parking Lot

Yesterday, on our way home from our field trip to the ROM, we made a stop at the Vaughan Mills mall. All went well until we tried to get back on the highway. As we sat in the left turning lane behind at least 100 vehicles, cars started pulling out of the lane behind us, flying up as far as they could in the right lane to force themselves back into the left turning lane in front of us. This meant it took more than 30 minutes to simply exit the mall parking lot.

However, it was not a complete fiasco as the students had a good opportunity to witness human behaviour from our perch in the school bus. And they made some interesting observations:

1) Overall, most of the drivers were very polite, despite it being quite stressful. We heard very few honks and most drivers considerately let people in.

2) The majority of the cars that were inconsiderate were high end vehicles (mainly Mercedes-Benz and Audi). There were also some large SUV’s.

3) One student compared what the cars were doing to budding in line in a store and wondered if these same people would push their way in front of children given the opportunity.

4) Which led to another student observing that they probably wouldn’t as being in the car gave them more anonymity.

It was very interesting listening to them. They thought carefully about what was happening and most found the behaviour of the budders inappropriate.

I must admit that I find drivers are being less and less considerate today. I wish more of the ‘adults’ would be as thoughtful about their behaviour as my students were.

Happy weekend!

Also posted in Black + White, Everyday Life, Observations, School, Writing Tagged , , , , |

Beautifully Unoriginal

Rant begin.

Feeling a little (actually, a lot) annoyed this morning as I scan the interweb for photographs. Even though we have an enormous amount of photography today, there is less originality than ever. Rather than developing a unique vision, most “photographers ” (I’m not even sure what that term means anymore) simply do what other photographers are already doing. And then the general public turns around and tells them how fantastic it is. Even the “best of the best” simply turn out photos that I consider “beautifully unoriginal”.

I call bull shit. Being a photographer is not simply having the right camera or lens or knowing how to use a flash. It is about developing a way of seeing or a unique vision or whatever you want to call it and then having the courage and developing the necessary skills to follow that vision wherever it takes you. Why would I want to take the same pictures that somebody else has already taken? What’s the point of it (other than making a few bucks, I guess)?

This photo is an example of what I mean. I have seen lots of photos from our local Cobble Beach, many of them the same. But I have never seen one that looks quite like this. It is how I saw it. It is not a copy of someone else’s vision (at least, that I know of), nor has it been influenced by a client’s demands. If nothing else, I take pride in knowing that I am sharing something unique with the world.

Rant over.


Also posted in Black + White