What is it about a snowfall that makes the world so silent?
It’s because every living thing that might otherwise be making noise is hunkered down until the air is clear again. The birds are all silent. Can it really just be the absence of their songs that makes such an eerie hush?
The air pump in my old fish tank was obnoxiously loud, but when it ran every second of every day, its buzzing was nothing – until it was turned off, and the silence was deafening.
Mom and Dad and I took a weekend trip to visit Gloucester.
We got to see my incredibly adorable little cousins.
The little one was born just after our visit last year.
Her sister we’ve seen a couple times before, but this visit the two of us became buddies.
More photos here
Last month, I joined Mom and Aunt Barb on a trip to Prince Edward Island, which none of us had ever visited. We didn’t go on our yearly camping trip on MDI with her this year, but this trip was a very nice substitute.
The two salient features of PEI are red dirt and Anne of Green Gables. Other prominent features include:
- Japanese tourists. Anne of Green Gables must be huge in Japan, because at least a quarter of all the tourists were from there.
- Fields of wheat and potatoes.
- Views of the ocean. The island is only forty miles wide, and it’s cut through with inlets, bays and estuaries, so it’s hard to drive far without catching a glimpse of the coastline.
- Really lovely, unique churches.
- Céilidh. This is just good old fashioned traditional Gaelic music. It’s the Irish word for “gathering” or “celebration,” pronounced “kay-lay.” We didn’t get the chance to hear any while we were there, but Mom and I listened to some at the National Folk Festival the week after.
Anyway, we had great three days there. Here’s some of what we saw.
The Campbell House
The Campbell’s home, which Lucy Maud Montgomery called the “wonder castle of my childhood,” was built in 1872 by her Uncle John and Aunt Annie Campbell. The first Campbells settled here in 1776, and the house is still in the Campbell family after over two hundred and thirty years. It was the setting for Anne’s Lake of Shining Waters.
This, of course, is the inspiration for the titular house in Anne of Green Gables. In real life, this farm was the home of David Jr. and Margaret Macneill, who were cousins of Montgomery’s grandfather. The farm was first settled in 1831 by David Macneill Sr. Although Lucy never lived here, she grew up nearby with her grandparents. She came to know her cousins’ farm through her explorations of the surrounding woodlands and places she discovered and named, such as Lover’s Lane and the Haunted Wood.
Soon after Anne of Green Gables was published in 1908, people began coming to Cavendish in search of Green Gables, along with the other places and people of Avonlea in the novel. It became a part of Prince Edward Island National Park in 1937 and it was declared a National Historical Site in 1985.
The provincial capital of P.E.I. It was founded in 1764 and named for King George III’s wife Queen Charlotte. In the following year it became the provincial capital of St. John’s Island, which was renamed Prince Edward Island in honor of Prince Edward, fourth son of George III and father of Queen Victoria and Commander-in-Chief of North America.
Charlottetown City Hall
Built 1887-88 in the Romanesque Revival style. Its multi-functional plan, typical of town and city halls of the period, included a police station, fire hall and stable on the ground floor, and council chambers, a court room, and offices on the upper stories.
Beaconsfield Historic House
Beaconsfield Historic House is a large Second Empire and Italianate influenced home located on the corner of Kent and West Streets. Prominent local architect William Critchlow Harris designed it for one of Prince Edward Island’s most successful shipbuilders, James Peake Jr. (1842-1895).
Unfortunately, the Peakes were destined to enjoy their elegant home for a very brief time. With the collapse of the shipbuilding industry and other personal financial problems, James Peake was forced to declare bankruptcy and had to leave Beaconsfield in 1882. He eventually moved to British Columbia where he died a broken man.
At the time, Beaconsfield was considered to be one of the most elegant and modern homes on the Island.
It featured gas lighting, central heating, a water closet and running water. It had twenty-five rooms, eight fireplaces, encaustic tiling, porcelain chandeliers, a beautiful coloured glass window above the staircase that featured Peake’s initials, lovely gardens and a waterfront view of Charlottetown Harbor.
Seat of the Prince Edward Island Legislature since 1847 and Canada’s second-oldest seat of government after the Nova Scotia Legislature’s own Province House in Halifax.
In September 1864, Province House had an important role in helping Prince Edward Island host the Charlottetown Conference. This conference resulted in the Canadian Confederation, which formed the British Canadian colonies into the Dominion of Canada on July 1, 1867, and was the birth of Canada as a nation.
Auntie Barb in front of the lighthouse with her Anne of Green Gables novelty hat with braids.
Schoodic Point, Birch Harbor and Winter Harbor
Anna left to return home to Germany yesterday.
We had an awesome time with her this summer. I’m really going to miss having her around.
We spent last week on our annual trip to a friend’s camp on Ragged Lake, up north somewhere between Moosehead and Baxter. This was our sixteenth year staying there; we took our first trip in 1997, when I was in third grade and Matt was four years old.
Anna came with us this year.
Unfortunately, she got sick and Matt had to take her home the day after we arrived, but at least she got to see the cabin and the lake.
Mount Katahdin, viewed from the road somewhere between Ripogenus Dam and Millinocket
Walking around the lake shore
Last day at camp
More photos here
Vas county, Dunántúl, Hungary — Zsolt Zsigmond
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Meteora, Thessaly, Greece — Ella Locardi
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Sunrise at Mesa Arch, Island in the Sky, Canyonlands National Park, Utah — John Lehmkuhl
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Gimsøystraumen Bridge, Lofoten archipelago, Nordland county, Norway — Henrik Johansson
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Augrabies Falls on the Orange River, South Africa — Hougaard Malan
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Japanese maples, Portland Japanese Garden, Portland, Oregon — Immortal Thrill-Seeker
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Transfagarasan Highway, Fagaras Mountains, Southern Carpathians, Romania — Horia Varlan
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Avenue of the Baobabs, Menabe, Madagascar — Taishi Maehara
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View from Mount Rigi, Swiss Plateau, Switzerland
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Serengeti, Tanzania — Amnon Eichelberg
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Tara River Canyon, Durmitor National Park, Montenegro — Maja
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Sandstone pillars at Wulingyuan, Zhangjiajie National Forest Park, Hunan province, China – Tom Horton
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Multnomah Falls, Colombia River Gorge, Oregon — Jesse Estes
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Camel thorn trees, Namib-Naukluft Park, Namibia, Africa – Frans Lanting
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Wedgemount Glacier just above Wedgemount Lake, Garibaldi Provincial Park, British Columbia, Canada – Ivan Andreevich
These are the best of the photos I’ve taken over this past summer. I’m so grateful for my new fancy DSLR camera; it’s let me get so many pictures I wouldn’t have gotten with my old point-and-click. They say that a nice camera won’t improve the quality of a person’s photographs, and it’s true that the most high-tech camera is useless in the hands of an incompetent photographer. Nonetheless, the fact that I can shoot in RAW has let me take photos that were so dark you could barely make out what was in them and make them look like they were taken in broad daylight, and the with the camera’s fast processing speed I can take half a dozen shots in the time it would have taken me to shoot twice with my old camera. Definitely worth what I paid for it.
Anyway, here’s a pictorial record of summer 2011. You can see a few more over here too.
OTHS Class of 2007
Camping on MDI with Mom, Matt & Aunt Barb - June
Matt and his girlfriend Anna : )
Inside a hollow tree trunk
Our annual family trip to a friend's cabin on Ragged Lake in northern Maine - August
Maine Discovery Museum in Bangor with Chris and Minnie and the girls - August
Wilbur from "Charlotte's Web"
The Tidely-Idely from Robert McCloskey's "Burt Dow, Deep Water-man"
Mattosaurus at the dino dig
Picking up shells
Sea life brick
I took Digital Photography and Printing this past semester with the awesome Michael Grillo. I took an art history class with Grillo my freshman year, and several others since then, and they’ve been some of the most interesting classes I’ve ever had. We look at the pieces of art and craft in the context of the culture that created them – their place in their audience’s lives, their aesthetic style and visual language, the cultural values they conveyed, the obvious and the more subtle messages they tried to impart – which is all a heck of a lot more interesting than memorizing “Title/Artist/Date/Medium/Style.” He’s also a exhibiting photographer, and I spent last semester trying to take some of what he had to teach about photography and improve my own skills. I made some progress in learning to capture the kind of images that are worth looking at, and I learned a lot about thinking like a photographer. I also bought an awesome new camera and started shooting in RAW.
Here are the images I shot over the course of the class.
The Studio Art Capstone course is required for graduating with a degree in Studio Art. As the name implies, it’s related to a capstone project, which is an exhibition the class puts on showcasing our work. The class is taken in the fall of senior year (more on that later). Because I was in France when I signed up for fall classes, I somehow didn’t realize that I needed to sign up for this class (it’s only offered in the fall, and it’s required for graduation). About a month into the semester, I realized I need to be in this class in order to graduate (again, more on that later). Fortunately I was able to get into the class, and I didn’t have too much trouble getting caught up. Besides getting the senior class exhibition set up, the class was concerned with teaching us the practical side to making a living as an artist: resumés, galleries, agents, career paths, etc.
The 2010 Senior Capstone Exhibition opened on December 3 in Lord Hall, and it will stay up until the middle of next week (January 20). It’s quite a nice show, with a lot of excellent work. I submitted my series of photographs from Le Mans. I would have liked to displayed them at a much larger scale – say, 15′x23′ rather than the 10′x15′ they are now – but they still make a nice display as they are now.
More photos of the show are here.
Impressions of Le Mans — Ben Richard
I still have lots of photos that I took during my stay in Le Mans that I haven’t published. I’ve just gone through and posted all the rest of them that I think are worth looking at on Flickr, starting here. You can check out a few of them below.
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Il reste encore beaucoup des photos qui j’ai pris pendant mon séjour au Mans qui je n’ai pas publié. Je viens juste de les parcourir, et j’ai téléchargé à Flickr tous les autres qui valent de le voir, à mon avis. Elles commencent ici. On peut voir quelques au-dessous.
Jardins Pierre de Ronsard *** Pierre de Ronsard Gardens
La Sarthe et le Vieux Mans *** The Sarthe and the Old City
Vieux bâtiments *** Old buildings
Le marché *** The farmer's market
Le vieux Mans *** The Old City
Tramway, Rue Gambetta
Le Mans at night *** Le Mans la nuit
Le Sablier au Parc de la Tessé *** The "Sablier" (Hourglass) in the Park de la Tessé