If there is one lens that lives on my XE-7 so much so that I feel it’s fixed to the camera, it is the Rokkor-X 45/2. This lens is a beautiful piece of glass that honestly, I wouldn’t want to replace with a 35mm focal length for my Minolta kit. It’s the lens that went through all of a trip to Disney World and Universal without being taken off the camera despite bringing a 135mm lens with which did more on the digital a6000 then on the XE-7. And while it looks a little silly strapped onto the beast that is the XE-7, as aRead More →

Next to the Minolta HiMatic 7s which got me first into photography, the Nikon F80 is the one that brought me back into the wonderful world of film and introduced me to the magic of Nikon AF lenses and Nikkor glass in general. I received this camera as a gift and immediately found myself very much attached to the system. You might say that the F80 is the camera that caused me to invest in the Nikon SLR system and switch from Minolta. From the F80 I got the D70s, D300 and my current main SLR the Nikon F5. And while many of the lensesRead More →

Here we are, there is always a certain bittersweetness about completing a project. And for me, this one was an eye-opener. It challenged not only my world view but my view of my own country and our history. But that is what history is supposed to do, challenge us to learn from the past and see how we can change the future. And here is the trouble with history, we can only see it through the eyes of those who wrote it and our personal bias. And trust me, it is hard to overcome your own bias. But the biggest problem with history that isRead More →

If there is one film developer that I will always go back to and use until they cease production (which isn’t any time soon) that developer is HC-110. Released in 1962 to little fanfare, Kodak HC-110 quickly found traction as being the developer of choice of Ansel Adams and those who use the zone system extensively. Kodak HC-110 is the third black & white developer that I ever used and became my developer of choice. Personally what keeps me coming back to HC-110 is the general-purpose use, the excellent results, economy, stability, and results that it continues to give. Kodak HC-110 has never let meRead More →

When you’re in a situation and your reputation is on the line you need something that works. But if the customer, client, or even your own personal project is on the line and you have to use film, then you want something that will work. Like work always, in any situation! Ilford FP4+ If you miss the ASA-125 rating of Kodak Plus-X, then look no further than Ilford FP4+. A film that dates back to the 1930s and has changed and grown as technology improved. FP4+ is Alex’s choice for outdoor shooting when the light is nice, even if cloudly. It responds well to beingRead More →

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 →