Sunday, February 24, 2013

The Argus C3

About two years ago, a longtime friend of the family asked if I wanted some of her old photographic equipment. In the assortment of antiquated goodies there was an Argus C3, of which I knew nothing about at the time. I was busy and so I tossed "The Brick" into a dusty corner. The camera itself was in poor shape and had seen its fair share of neglect over the years. 

While visiting Newfoundland this past Christmas, I picked it up again. Upon realizing it had rangefinder, complete manual controls, and a leaf shutter that appeared to be working, I quickly found an expired roll of Kodak Gold 200. The few photographs presented here show some of the wonderful images that it can produce:

Church, Harbour Grace NL, November 2012.
Winter, Carbonear NL, November 2012.
House, Harbour Grace NL, November 2012.
Argus in Action, St. John's NL, November 2012.
Now well into the days of Instagram and Hipstamatic; damaged lenses, quirky cameras and expired film are often digitally simulated into "perfection." While this certainly has its own time and place it was very fun to get my hands on the real thing.

All images were shot with the Argus C3 on expired Kodak Gold 200, developed, scanned and lightly adjusted.

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Feature in The Coast

The Coast Magazine, Halifax. Feb 21–27,  2013

Check out this weeks Coast Magazine for the Career Minded article. Coast writer Alyssa Gallant talked to me about my time at NSCAD University, what brought me there and what some of my aspiration as a photographer are.

The feature also highlights some other recent grads from Halifax's various institutions discussing their respective professions and experiences getting there.

Read the digital edition here.

Friday, February 15, 2013

New Photography on NSCAD Website

Screenshot from NSCAD's homepage, 2013

For the past few months, I have been systematically visiting different departments of NSCAD University and photographing them. The resulting images serve as a refreshing update to the website and give some insight into the different areas one can work in at the university. Check out NSCAD University's homepage to see a slideshow of some of the shots! 

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Adrian Fish at Viewpoint Gallery

The Soto/Hasid Project, © Adrian Fish 2009–2011

Halifax and Toronto based artist Adrian Fish has an exhibition of his Soto/Hasid Project up at Viewpoint Gallery, in Halifax, NS. The work consists of eight large scale 30" x 44" prints of members of both the Soto Zen Buddhist community and the Hasidic Jewish community. The prints are installed so that the two faiths oppose each other and while they are incredibly simple, no detail is spared. The photographs ooze clarity and precision. 

To find out more about this project, check out his artist talk February 17th, at 2pm at Viewpoint Gallery, or drop by anytime before the show closes on March 3rd. 

If you can't make it to the show, you can view his work at

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Sammlung: Photo Exhibition Follow-up

Large hand-made cherry wood frames immaculately display more than twenty traditional black and white fibre prints. Near the window of the gallery, plants and a small collection of other oddities comprise Heath Simpson's own "natural history" collection. The addition of coloured flood lighting and a brilliant yellow wall makes this one of the swankiest exhibits I have attended in a while.

From the sounds of his artist talk today, this is something that Simpson was going for. It reflects the often over-the-top nature of the natural history museums and zoos he visited in Germany; a country that Simpson has a self-professed love of. Interestingly, the large, architectural black and white images have a melancholy feel to them. Entirely void of people and often void of the live animals one might expect to see as well, the viewer is left to question the spaces and institutions Simpson has focused on. 

Reflexive of Simpson's focus on both printmaking and photography while studying at NSCAD University, the prints are of the utmost quality and are without a doubt inviting objects. Certainly, one can easily enjoy these images without a fine art background or working understanding of some of the artist who inspired him. What develops as one of the exhibitions most interesting dialogues is its dual anachronistic nature. The very institutions that Simpson focused on are becoming as obsolete as the analogue photography that he employed to make the pictures. For me, this is what makes Sammlung stand out most.

The exhibition runs until Saturday, February 9th. If you are in Halifax, be sure to check it out before it closes.

All works © Heath Simpson, 2012-2013

Monday, February 4, 2013

SAMMLUNG: Photo Exhibition Opens Tonight

Heath Simpson, artist, friend, former classmate, printmaker, and photographer par-excellence is having an opening his work SAMMLUNG this evening at the Anna Leonowens Gallery, in Halifax, Nova Scotia. This long-awaited body of work, will be on display until February 9th at 1891 Granville St. Doors open at 5:30pm tonight.

About the work:
From January to June 2012, Heath Simpson lived in Berlin, Germany where he compiled the project SAMMLUNG. The work is a photo-based architectural survey of zoological gardens, aquariums, and natural history museums. Conducted with the financial assistance of the Roloff Beny Scholarship, the photographs investigate the history and innovations of these collections. What were once the Wunderkammern of the rich and elite are now public attractions. The images are sure to leave the viewer with questions, perhaps due to Simpson’s desire to photograph the spaces void of visitors or because of the austere nature of black and white photography.   - from NSCAD
An update will come later after the opening. Stay tuned.

Silver and Crystals

It is winter in Nova Scotia. My enthusiasm to get out and begin new work is low. What better a time then to head to the darkroom? Seems fitting, too, as I am the instructor for NSCAD University's School of Extended Studies Black & White Photo course this semester. Without a doubt, there will be a good deal of silvery tones and darkroom magic over the next few months.

I used to use a lot of Arista films, from Freestyle Photographic, as they turned out to be re-branded Kodak emulsions. On a roll of Arista Premium 100 (no longer available re-branded Kodak Plus-X) that I developed yesterday, I spotted a a couple lovely portraits, and whipped off a couple proofs.

Sunday, February 3, 2013

It Begins

After deleting my flickr account – I hadn't used it in months – I felt there was something missing. Facebook is one thing, but it remains among friends. Linked In is certainly a good resource, but it is a profile, not a place for images. I started a few weeks back and I'm pleased with its progress. But it is clean and simple; somewhere my artwork can stand out on its own.

So, I am beginning this blog as a sidecar to my website. A place to find photographs, thoughts, tips and tricks. Both a resource and more of a 'daily gallery.' Check back frequently (or subscribe) as I intend to keep things rolling pretty constantly.

Grand Pre, Nova Scotia.