Braidian, B.C. is Sold

 © Heidi I. Koehler
The little ghost town of Bradian, B.C., Canada was sold to foreign interests recently.

 A larger view of this panorama can be found on my DA Page 12monthsOFwinter here.

We visited Bradian last year on our trip to Bralorn which is also virtually a ghost town but with a few hardy souls who come up there from Vancouver for skiing and hunting.

 A larger view of this panorama can be found on my DA Page 12monthsOFwinter here.

A beautiful area rich in mining history. Sadly (or perhaps fortunately if you are a local) there is no fuel to be had in these parts so it's best to be very prepared to come and go especially if you are approaching the town sites from the East.


Summer Wedding

One particular photo shoot was a particular pleasure for me: a wedding that covered two distinct locations.
The local hall is where the wedding took place and a provincial park is where most of the guest photos were taken.
It was a wonderful but also challenging experience. Wonderful because of the people involved and the location of the outdoor shoot but challenging because I had not not seen the venue before hand. It was an unexpected shock to see how dimly lit the hall was and I realized the windows had been so covered to keep the tremendous heat at bay. Likewise the doors were closed for the most part which cut out most of the usable light so it was flash photography the whole way. I was scrambling like crab on the beach trying to stay ahead of the happy couple capturing the moments on their way to the alter .


From the photography perspective it required me to get a lot closer- figure out the balance of capturing the moments without getting in the way and I am very pleased that there are many shots that were very focused on the bride and groom. I'm also happy that I didn't fall on my face at any time and the wedding went without a hitch!
The informal reception at the park was amazing- we took our cars down to the tiny reaction ferry to cross over (4 cars at a time) to the Stein Valley Park gazebo which is a stunning location. Here was the beauty of nature and the light of the sun to enhance the happy day.

Overall it was my favorite shoot of the year.




Powershot in Podunky

I was in the market for a small camera to carry around in my purse and after a few false starts finally settled on a model.
In the past my favorite pocket camera of all time was an Olympus model that had a fantastic lens, good zoom, good macro ability and I wanted those things in my new camera. That old camera was just under 5 mega pixels but I had no issues getting 8x10 prints and even 11x14 from it so mega pixels themselves were not an overriding issue in my new purchase... new cameras now average 20 mega pixels. The biggest factor was image quality and a moderate zoom.
Where I live today does not give me much choice for models so I went out of town. (I do not believe in shopping online unless it really isn't available in my province- end of story.)
I have to admit I didn't do much research and thought I couldn't go wrong with the mighty name of Nikon...till I looked at the photos I took on that camera on my computer monitor. I was not happy about the 'look' of the images. Later on I read a review of this camera and it noted that image clarity was not a strong suit. There are many words used to describe this 'look': pixilation, grain, artifacts, blur etc and in all honesty I couldn't even use those words to describe it; it was more like the finest resolution rendered an image that looked like it has been painted with a very fine brush.
I returned it. This was a costly mistake in terms of time wasted and fuel money...London Drugs in Kamloops is an hour's drive away. It has to be said that this store is a great place to shop for computers and electronics with very knowledgeable staff so I was able to pick up a few things I needed anyway but I resolved to content myself with a camera I could buy in my own town.
Unfortunately my second purchase turned out to have a ridiculous problem: The flash unit was automatically disabled when the camera was set to operate silently! This made absolutely no sense- audible beeps are the last thing a photographer needs. The camera was a Fuji model that was rated waterproof to a certain depth; perhaps there is a need for swimmers, divers and snorkelers to hear beeps- I have no idea but had to return it for that reason. I discovered during the initial purchase that the electronics store does not stock batteries for it's cameras...nor did the big box stores. This is another issue about living in Podunk.
A Samsung model was available at the big box store but when I asked about it the clerk told me the supplier hadn't provided new stock...just a floor model. How...stupid. I ended up buying a Canon Powershot SX50 HS model and testing it out the next day and so far am very happy with the picture quality and the additional extras like the James Bond-like zoom. There is a lot of exploring to do with it yet...the literature recommends a 'fast' memory card for movies and today I was going to pick one up the electronics store but, this being a small town, a staff member put the 'OPEN' sign out 20 minutes before the store actually opened for business. This had the effect of sending me to the Big Box Store...I could have waited to buy the memory card...it was simply because of a foolish act that annoyed the consumer that the smaller shop lost a sale.

The image below represents a cropped portion of an image taken in the evening - a handheld shot of coloured pencils. I am obviously happy about the macro capability!

This pano was created with the software included on the disc that came with the camera. I take many landscape photos for the express purpose of creating a panorama manually...I tried the software out for the fun of it and with 3 very easy shots to work with. I circled the unacceptable area.