Ever since the invention of the automobile and aeroplane, the way people moved changed rapidly. Henry Ford’s Model T put the dream of a personal car within reach; improvements in planes through the inter-war period into World War Two and the post-war period allowed long-distance travel at an even faster rate. While steam motive power continued to drive many railroad operators through the war, the rise of diesel began to reshape even the train industry. Through the war, fuel and material shortages spiked passenger train services, but even now, those were starting to decline. It became clear that the golden age of rail had comeRead More →

The late 19th century brought the final push to extend out the transcontinental line. The arrival of the 20th century, the Canadian Pacific Railway was the only line that extended across Canada, at least from Vancouver to Montreal. In Ontario, Grand Trunk managed to secure itself as the big player in the province by absorbing all the competition but could not do that with Canadian Pacific finding itself against a competitor that it simply could not buy out. This was the golden age of rail travel when mighty steam locomotives travelled across the country; rail networks connected people and places, mail and cargo were easilyRead More →

I’ll admit, I have a soft spot for manual focus Minolta cameras. And the Minolta lineup is a unique cross-section of camera technology through the post-war 20th Century. All my early experience with photography came in various Minolta cameras, from my family’s Riva Zoom to my first personal camera, the Hi-Matic 7s and the first SLRs in the SR-T 102 X-7a. More recently, the XE-7 has been my Minolta SR-Mount of choice. But the XE-7 lead me down the rabbit hole of the 1970s of Minolta’s technology-sharing agreement with Ernst Leitz because, of course, there was something better. And that something better is the MinoltaRead More →

My first introduction to Brantford came in the form of the film Silent Hill where the city’s depressed centre featured as the downtown of the titular Silent Hill, a fictional mining town that ended up in a supernatural cataclysm after a coal fire broke out. Brantford, in reality, has a far more complex history where the dark colonial past and rich indigenous heritage are seen like never before in Ontario. I’ll admit, this week was hard, made harder by recent dark elements of Canada that were brought to light for us on the colonial side of history. The earliest known human settlement in the GrandRead More →

The Greenwhich-Mohawk industrial brownfield site provided the backdrop for Week 20. This massive complex in Brantford, Ontario has been up for development for years since the last business left late last century. The site dates back to the mid 1800s, providing homes to many companies such as Massy-Furguson and the Cockshutt Plow company. Recently they hosted an open house that allowed local photographers to come and visit and photograph the location to raise awareness for the project. It was a cold damp day like many have been over the course of spring here in Ontario, so I opted for a fast black and white filmRead More →