The year was 1865, the American Civil War had ended, and four British Provinces in British North America decided to unite under what is called Canadian Confederation. And a large group of Irish Americans were wondering what their next step would be, and John O’Mahoney found himself at a crossroads. The Fenian Brotherhood hit its stride during the Civil War and now had money and manpower to spare. Plus all their members who served in both armies during the war had either kept or purchased their own equipment, the Fenians had an army that could easily stand up to the American Army of the day.Read More →

It should come as no surprise that at the mention of Sir John A MacDonald, you get a lot of negative feedback. He managed to in his time attract a lot of controversies. Like his law career, he drew as much positive attention as he does negative today. Born the 11th of January 1815 in Glasgow, Scotland, the son of a somewhat successful business owner by age five he and his family had immigrated to Canada settling in Kingston, Upper Canada. While his father continued to see moderate success in running various mills and businesses, most of the family income would go towards John’s education.Read More →

It was the 6th of November 1837, and Lower Canada had erupted in open armed revolt against the Colonial Government. The Patriotes under Louis-Joseph Papineau and many others fuelled by the ideals of the American Revolution, French Liberty, and Republicanism. They decided that they would only rid themselves of the influence of the British Ruling Class, a group of Tory elites organised into a group known as the Chateau Clique was to begin a revolution when their demands for reform were ignored. There had been some communication between Lower Canada Patriotes and the radicals in Upper Canada under William Lyon MacKenzie. And while a coordinatedRead More →

William Lyon MacKenzie, not to be confused with William Lyon MacKenzie King (remember that for later), is more myth and legend that man. Cloaked in a persona often of his own making, MacKenzie was at the heart of the Upper Canada Rebellion, his push towards radical reform and public speaking skills caused many to flock to his cause. His use of twisting the facts, overblowing situations and the ability to turn men against each other and himself forced the issue in 1837. But much of what we know of MacKenzie is often more myth than fact, which has like much of Canadian history of theRead More →

If anyone has read any of my classic film reviews, you’ll know I have a taste for out-of-production films, especially Kodak Plus-X and Panatomic-X. For several years I’ve participated in an event called Expired Film Day. This is an online celebration of shooting film past its due date and it usually is a single day, the 15th of March, but this year the mind behind it decided to give three days to get out and shoot. In the past, I’ve only gotten out and shot a single roll of film on that day, but now that I had three days to play I could getRead More →

In Post-War British North America, the British authorities took a two-pronged approach to the defences of their North American holdings. The first through a series of upgrades to the defensive forts along the border and the bolstering of the British garrisons, the second would be to prevent another war through a series of negotiated agreements and treaties. The idea would be to shore up the start of better relationships and fill in the gaps left by the Treaty of Gent. If you have read the Treaty of Ghent and understand its context you’ll quickly realise Ghent could not be the final say for normal relationsRead More →

Canada has throughout our collective history has been ruled through an officer known as a Governor-General or Lieutenant-Governor. These men (and women) operate as a representative of the crown. Today the office is more of a symbolic role, serving as a figurehead and patron of the arts, Colonel-In-Chief of several Regiments within the Canadian Armed Forces and Reserves. But the office has a far-reaching history back to when they ruled directly or through a Provincial Parliament. The governors that ruled in Pre-Confederation Canada were among those who often ruled directly as autocrats, with an iron fist or a velvet glove. The first of these Lieutenant-GovernorsRead More →

Out of all the projects I have done in the past, this is the only one I can say has been a long time coming. But when I look back at how long it took me to prepare this project from conception to final project, it has not been that long. I mean I spent five years working on my War of 1812 project, but that was a logistical mess from the start. Acts of Confederation has been a slow burn, I started working on the framework in 2017, completed most of the writing in 2018 while collecting all but a single final roll ofRead More →

The film that really started it all, the TMax line from Kodak gave the world one of the first tastes in 1986 with a modern T-Grain film (Ilford Delta line use the same T-Grain model but were released in 1992). Now the TMax we have today is different from that original release, but it’s still a strong film stock, while not always my first choice (I’m more a fan of the traditionally grained film), I do use it because I love trying to emulate the classic look even out of a modern film. But for those who love the modern look that’s both sharp, fine-grained,Read More →

The idea of a monobath is not a new one. If you’ve followed my online work you’ll know I’ve made my own based on a formula first put forward by Donald Qualls back in 2004 based on the HC-110 developer (a favourite of mine). When Michael Raso (of the Film Photography Project) started talking about their own Monobath I didn’t give it a second look (to be honest). While I enjoyed the ease of a single step that will develop, stop, and fix a roll of film a welcome break from the amount of work that goes into developing a roll of film, it feltRead More →