Posts Tagged ‘lights’

Is there anyone who doesn’t complain about driving in Toronto?
Does anyone have a solution that we can all agree on?
No.

Yesterday Toronto began an experiment on King Street. An experiment that CBC called a disaster on its first day.   This morning I went to check it out for myself.  It was mid-morning so there weren’t many cars.   Also, weekday drivers and Sunday drivers downtown are different.  On weekdays it’s the regulars who know the roads because they drive them all the time.   Does that make a difference? – I’m not sure.

below: At most intersections between Bathurst and Jarvis, traffic is not allowed to proceed straight through – you must turn right.  Streetcars and bicycles are the exceptions.  The traffic signals now have advanced green arrows to allow cars to turn right before the pedestrians cross the road.    Taxis are allowed to go through only between 10 p.m. and 5 a.m.   You’ll notice that the left hand land has been painted with yellow stripes, i.e. no cars here!

white arrow painted on road directing traffic to turn right

below: Two more changes have appeared. First, the streetcar stops have been moved to after the intersection instead of before. Second, small barricades block the right hand lane after the intersection. These two changes have the effect of blocking cars who try to sneak through on King Street. If there is a streetcar, you’re stuck behind it. I did see a car try to pass a streetcar (on the left) but it was unsuccessful.

streetcar stopped to let on passengers, cars behind it on the street

Many cars were disobeying the new traffic signs, some out of confusion  and some blatantly flaunting the rules.   Cars would pull into the right turn lane but then go through the light anyhow.

below: I wasn’t the only ones watching the traffic.  Global TV was at King and Jarvis while CTV were stationed at King and Church.

Global TV car and truck parked on King street, street car about to pass them

below: CBC interviews people at King & Yonge as a black GMC goes through the intersection.

CBC reporter interviewing people on the sidewalk, traffic on King sreet, a black SUV making an illegal straight through the intersection,

below: The lighter traffic makes for easier illegal left turns!

a black car makes an illegal left turn at King and Church streets

below: Taking pictures of drivers doing illegal things was like shooting fish in a barrel. There were a couple of police cars around but so far there are few consequences to doing what you want. It’s early days yet, right? Apparently starting next week, the fine for illegally going straight through the intersection will be $100 and 2 demerit points.

traffic and street cars on King Street

I have one suggestion and that is to change the traffic lights so that the only green is a right turn arrow. The streetcars would have their own light – something like the ‘white line light’ that is used at King and Sumach as well as at Eglinton and Duplex. Having an ordinary green light is almost giving mixed signals to the drivers.

below:  Hey!  Mr. Bentley watch where you’re going!

two cars waiting for a red light. a white car and a grey Bentley, pedestrians crossing the intersection in front of them.

Take care out there!

people walking past a window, dark outside, reflections of the traffic in the window

It was a rainy commute home for many people last night.  Not too miserable though, just enough drizzle to bring out a few umbrellas and create some wonderful reflections to play with.

woman with umbrella in the foreground, traffic on a rainy night in the background

two white cars in front of a stopped streetcar, 514 Cherry, new streetcar, in front of the Elephant and Castle bar on King Street, people sitting on the streetcar are visible, dark outside, wet and rainy evening

city street on a rainy night, pedestrians on the sidewalk, traffic, trees with autumn foilage, dark blue sky, lights in highrises

lights reflecting on a wet street, crosswalk

Shorter day light hours + autumn weather (no snow yet!) = an evening of playing with light and shadow.  I came out of the subway at Queen station and decide to “chase the light”.  It was a perfect evening for a walk and I wanted to make it last as long as possible.   For the most part I stayed on Queen Street although I will admit to straying onto Shuter for a block or two.  It’s not the prettiest part of the city but every place has potential, from a photographic perspective anyhow.

below: The new (replacement) pedestrian walkway over Queen Street that will link the Eaton Centre with The Bay.

glass pedestrian bridge over a street, Queen Street, with traffic and people as well as an ambulance, late afternoon

below: City reflections in both glass and polished stone.

reflections in a stone and glass building

below: The curve of street car wires at Queen and Church.  A wall of peeling paint, as well as a ghost sign, provides the backdrop

the curve of the streetcar wires in front of a wall that was painted white but the paint is peeling to reveal the brick below.

below: The east wall of St. Michaels Cathedral (RC) with reflected light, as seen across a construction site.

one end of St. Michaels Cathedral with reflected light falling on it, new buildings and construction surround it

below: The same church from a slightly different angle.

close up of part of a church roof and window with reflected light on it.

below: Angels

wooden angel cutouts decorate the roofline of a small building

below: Pigeons, old Bell phones and the Moss Park Discount Store.  Not so much light here but I liked the wall.

two Bell telephone booths, small version, mounted on a wall with street art painted on it, beside the window of a convenience store with a 649 ad in the window. Sign over the window says Moss Park Discount Store

below: A long way from home.

people standing on a corner waiting to cross the street, including a woman dressed in blue who is using a walker, plus two Morman men in their white shirts and black ties.

below: A large double billboard is black beside the old building.   The building is at the corner of Ontario Street and Brigden Place.   It was built in 1911 as a 4 1/2 storey warehouse for the Newell Company and their Dominion Envelope Company.  It was one of three buildings that they owned in the area.   After WW2 the building was purchased by J.D. Carrier Shoe Company (the ghost sign!).  Today it has been renovated as lofts and studios.

evening light shines on an old white brick building, a large billboard as seen from the end, is in front

below: A small section of the back of the Moss Park Armoury, a Canadian Forces building constructed in the 1960’s.

part of a wall, vertical stripes of brick sections and white sections, narrow windows in the white sections, 3 windows in total

below: A quick break from chasing light…. you never know what you’re going to encounter downtown, and of course you have to stop and take advantage of the opportunities when they arise, so here we have a slight diversion!  I’m going to assume that the background of their pictures is much better than the background of this picture!

a bride and groom embrace while three photographers take their picture. on a sidewalk of a city street

below: As evening falls, the lights come on in the bus shelters.
You can thank (or curse) Astral Media for that.

a lit advertisement in a bus shelter of two men in Roots clothes, a young man sits on the bench in the bus shelter while two people walk past it on the sidewalk

below: King Street and Queen Street merge just before they pass over the Don River and the Don Valley Parkway.   The green railing in the photo below is on the bridge over the DVP, the buildings and cranes are on the other side of the river.

evening light, cityscape with many construction cranes, light poles and utility poles and wires, evening,

below:  Upstairs, downstairs.  Looking west along King Street from the Don River.

looking along King street from beside ramp over the railway tracks - light under the bridge shows someone sitting there, city scene in the rest of the photo

Once the light fades beyond a certain point, contrast is limited and dullness creeps into the resulting photos.  It’s too late for well lit photos and too early for pictures of city lights.  But it’s a great time to stop and find some dinner!

shoes of a man who is moving as he sings, street and sidewalk in the photo

Beaches Streetfest 2017
Pictures from last evening’s fun.

below: Spock was there too.

a man dressed as Dr. Spock from Star Trek hugs a musician at an outdoor music festival

below: Old Man Flanagan’s Ghost plays their Irish and Scottish music outside The Stone Lion.

the band, old man flanagan's ghost plays on a street corner, a bass player, a guitar player, and two fiddlers,

two musicians with lights on them, from the back, with the crowd standing on the street in front of them, one woman dancing

a singer with his arm up in the air, a woman across from him also pointing upwards

below: A saxophone player from The Achromatics shows off her style.

a woman in a red skirt plays the saxophone on the street, a part of the Achromatics, a music group, a man on keyboards stands in the background

below: Johnny Max Band

singer Johnny Max sings at a street festival, blue fedora, purple check shirt, a man in the background with a 416 Toronto T-shirt on

below: Dancing to the music.

a couple dances on the street, attending a music street festival, some people look on.

below:  Someone wants to play along.

a little girl runs towards a temporary stage set up on the sidewalk, she is pointing to it. The musicians have moved forward and are playing closer to the crowd

below: Jenie Thai

a woman in sunglasses and teal dress plays the keyboards. A man with a small beard is playing the guitar beside her, a red wall with text street art is behind them.

below: Shooting bubbles. These bubble makers were being sold at the festival so there were lots of bubbles all over the place.

kids playing with plastic bubble shooters in a crowd on the street.

below: Guitarist Neil Chapman from the Zedheads in a rare moment when he lifted his while playing the guitar.

guitarist, neil chapman, playing outside.

below: Another Zedhead member

bearded man with sunglasses and black basebell cap sits at a drum set. Hhis baseball cap says Zedhead on it.

below: A window seat behind the stage

a woman is seated in a restaurant by the window that is open, she is looking out and watching a group of musicians perform, there is a man on a drum set as well as another man.

a young boy in a large yellow T-shirt is watching musicians outdoors.

below: Queen Street as the sun went down.

evening, darkening sky, many people on the street at a street festival, most people are facing away from the camera except one woman in front who is looking straight ahead. Musicians playing on the right, standing in front of stores

below: Excitement!

three young girls watch an evening outdoor music performance by a band of 6 musicians on a street corner

below: Under the red lights.

a youngblack man in sunglasses and black hat sits at a keyboard with mircophone in front of him, evening, some red lights are shining on him. outside.

back of a girls head, long hair tied in a ponytail, outside, in the evening, as she watches a music performance with a small crowd of people

people, part of a larger crowd watching a street performance, one woman has a bright orange mohawk hairdo.

The festival continues all weekend (July 28, 29 and 30)

#beachesjazz | #beachesstreetfest

There are four exhibitions at The Power Plant Contemporary Art Gallery at the moment.

One of the exhibits is “A Wall is just a Wall” by Kapwani Kiwanga. Here, a hallway has been transformed with pink and blue lights. If you walk down this hall, you’ll find an entranceway to another section of the gallery with more of Kiwanga’s work. The gist of the thought behind her exhibit is the affect that architecture and design (such as colour) has on the behaviour of those exposed to it.   It’s a bit disconcerting to walk through the lights – they affect your perception of space and make you feel a bit dizzy.  Or at least that’s what happened to me!

a hallway is lit in pink and blue lighting, covers all walls and ceiling too

Another hall.  Another exhibit.  This time, an installation by Latifa Echakhch called “Cross Fade”.   You can see it in the Fleck Clerestory which is the long, high hallway that runs down the middle of the building.  For the installation, the walls were painted light blue with white cloud shapes.  Chunks of the outer layer of plaster were then removed and pieces left on the floor.    The sky is falling!  I can just see Chicken Little running around.  The sky is falling!  But in this case, he’d be right.

When I first saw the installation, I only saw the lower portion and I assumed that it was a neglected wall.  It looks like many of the walls you find in lanes and alleys.  To me it represented the cycle of building and decay that plays out all around us.   I struggle with the idea that painting it to look like the sky changes how the piece should be perceived.  Are we supposed to be upset that the sky is broken and lying on the ground?  Is the use of the normal (plaster falling off a neglected wall) to try to show the abnormal (the sky falling apart) on purpose?  If so, to what purpose?

high walls in a narrow room, walls covered with plaster and painted light blue with clouds, some of the plaster is peeling away and it's supposed to look like the sky is falling . a large window is at the end of the room

below: Looking up towards the skylights.   It is more apparent from this angle that the walls are painted to look like the sky.   By the way, cross fade is the technique in sound or movie editing  where a picture or sound gradually appears at the same time as another disappears.

looking upwards to a skylight two storeys above, the walls of the narrow room (hall) are covered with plaster and painted light blue with clouds, some of the plaster is peeling away and it's supposed to look like the sky is falling

From the online description of the exhibit:  “…. Cross Fade evokes the remains of an action that has already taken place. Echakhch’s wall painting of the sky appears to be falling apart. Fragments of the sky still exist intact on the upper sections of the walls, out of reach, reminding us of its beauty. However, large parts of the sky lie on the ground, creating a peculiar feeling that something beyond our control is either happening or has just happened. The technique employed here references the classical fresco, a second skin that usually leads the viewer into a painted world, a trompe-l’œil, rendering the two-dimensionality of the wall invisible. On the contrary, Echakhch’s work shatters this illusion, rooting us in the present, which like a cross fade, is caught between the past and the future.”

 

Leaving the hall theme behind, the last two exhibits are:

below:  Part of “On Fishes, Horses and Man”  by Jonathas de Andrade

a room in an art gallery filled with posters of men hanging from the ceiling at various levels. All have the words museu do homem do noreste

below:  And “The One Who Keeps on Giving” by Maria Hupfield

art installation on a gallery ceiling of many light bulbs of different shapes and sizes hanging from a piece of wood on cords of different, but short, lengths.

All exhibits continue until mid May.

This past weekend was the 5th annual Bloor Yorkville Icefest.
It’s an event that features ice sculptures in the park at Cumberland and Bellair.

The theme this year was Canada 150, as 2017 is Canada’s 150th birthday.

a group of people sit and stand on a large rock behind an ice sculpture of a maple leaf with the words Canada 150 under it, all carved in ice.

below: Sculptures in an enclosure (i.e. no one gets close enough to touch).  The Parliament building in Ottawa is on the left with a very tall RCMP Mountie standing beside it.  I’m not sure who the sculpture in the middle is supposed to represent.   On the right, a large 1867, the year of Confederation, on top of a large 2017.

people standing on a large rock to look at ice sculptures of the Parliament buildings in Ottawa, a tall RCMP mountie and the numbers 1867 2017 .

below: A number of artists worked on their sculptures as part of the festival.  This mountie and beaver had  just been completed before I arrived.

an ice sculpture of a mountie and a beaver has just been finished. The tools used by the artist are lying around on the ground below the sculpture.

below:  A large chunk of ice gets cut into smaller cubes.   Each cube contains a small toy that had been frozen in the ice.  For $2 you could buy an ice cube and smash it to liberate the toy.

a man is using a chainsaw to cut a chunk of ice into smaller cubes. Small toys have been frozen into the ice. Other people are watching, especially two kids.

Don’t miss the sign in the background!

below: Complete with spelling mistake. Charlottetown is spelled wrong.
Also, the term Newfie is included? Apparently it’s no longer an insult to call someone a Newfie.

a young woman in black coat and brown tuque stands beside a block of ice that has the names of some of Canada's cities carved into it.

below: The warm temperatures were making some of the thinner pieces more fragile than usual.   The little ‘knobs’ on this replica of the Taj Mahal were barely hanging on.  Luckily the temperatures dropped enough that most of the sculptures survived.

a woman is standing behind an ice sculpture of the taj mahal.

people at the Bloor Yorkville Icefest

a girl in a bright pink jacket stands behind a podium built of ice and in front of a wall made of ice. Both have curvy lines and swirls carved into them.

an ice sculpture of a face, perhaps a man weraing a hat with a black hat band?, crowd scene in the background, a woman's face on the left side of the photo.

a ice sculpture of a mountie standing at attention and saluting, light by pink and red lights,

a young man stands behind an ice sculpture to pose for a picture, one hand up with peace sign of two fingers, a young woman is looking at him from the other side of the sculpture

a coouple stand on a set of stairs behind an ice sculpture to have their picture taken.

#blooryorkville | #icefest17

Take one ordinary semi-detached house on an ordinary street in Leslieville…
and add a decoration or two…

the front yard of a semi detached house is full of toys and stuffed animals, signs and flags, and Christmas decorations,

The above photo was taken back in November whereas the one below was taken a couple days ago.  Many, many items are the same.  The biggest change is that there a few more Christmas decorations now large candy canes, another Santa Claus, a couple of angels and an elf or two.

a massive collection of dolls, toys, stuffed animals and decorations fill a front yard of a house

Call it cute. Call it creepy. Call it fun.  Call it fascinating. Call it a mess.

below: Some of the dolls and toys are attached to wooden stakes that stand upright in the yard.

a small smiling doll with her arms up is attached to a wooden stake in the front yard of a house

below: The fence is packed full with toys and dolls and the like, including this creepy clown and ghoulish green faced doll.   The pink Powerpuff girl (Blossom?) looks happy and even Elmo doesn’t seem to mind being behind bars.

peering between the metal bars of a fence is a creepy clown doll and a green faced zombie doll, a string of Christmas lights is across the bottom of the fence

a mickey mouse plastic figure is sitting on a wire fence, his chin is his hand and he's looking upwards, other toys out of focus behind him - circles with happy faces and a couple of frisbees

below: A red candle fence lines the entrance.

frontyard of a house is full of toys and decorations, the front walk is lined by large plastic red candles, the front door is in shadows.

below: The retaining wall is also covered.  Welcome to our Garden, Boston Bruins, more Mickey Mouse, Dora the Explorer, Season Greetings and a frisbee or two or three.

under a metal fence, a retaining wall that is covered with frisbees, plaques with words on them and other plastic bits

I wonder how it all started?  And where is it going?

Shrek is between two snowmen, all plastic toys and decorations, behind the metal bars of a fence, a lot of toys and dolls and stuffed animals behind them.

I wonder what the neighbours think.

a white plastic gnome and a Disney princess are among a large collection of toys in a front yard

a red plastic toy in the foreground, a doll in a purple dress in the background

a plastic Santa Claus, a plastic angel and a pokemon

a stuffed plushie creature is attached to a pole with black electrical tape around his face such that it covers his eyes

a toy flower with a green stem, petals made of pink fabric with white polka dots, red lips and large white and blue sunglasses.

a faded blond doll with blank eyes looks down, she is attached to a wooden stake with black electrical tape