Monday, May 17, 2010

Day 334 - Purple Leaf Sandcherry

I like the flowers on these bush. Anyone know what this is?

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Day 330 - Inside of Tulip

I had a very busy day and did not have much time for photos. A quick grab shot of a tulip on the way home was all I could muster.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Day 329 - Bleeding Hearts

Day 328 - Skywalk

I didn't get outdoors much today so my picture taking was limited to indoor walkways and airports. I didn't miss much, it was cold and windy in Toronto on Tuesday.

Day 327 - CN Tower and Steam Whistle Brewery

I was in Toronto for two days of meetings. Most of my time was indoors attending meetings but I did get out for a stroll Monday afternoon.

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Day 326 - Flowers

Not sure what these are. Anyone..?

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Day 325 - Unoaked Chardonnay

My wife and I have never really taken to chardonnay. The buttery, rich, vanilla flavours created by being in oak barrels, has never appealed to us, so we do not tend to buy chardonnay.

Unoaked chardonnay, fermented in stainless steel tanks, no oak, results in a wine that appears to me to be lighter, cleaner, more refreshing. We recently discovered this style aligns more with our palate preference. Since then we have been on the lookout for good unoaked values.

Anakena produces a great quality unoaked chardonnay for only $9.99 at major NSLC outlets. Aside from the unattractive smell (wet dog rolls in spilled fruit juice?) this chardonnay is pretty good. It has a pleasant mouthfeel, zesty melon and grapefruity flavours, has a crisp acidity and is nicely balanced.

On a side note we visited Anakena in 2008. Anakena is a lovely winery in Chile, in the Rapel Valley, in the foothill of the Andes. We enjoyed a nice tasting on the lawn and had a pleasant stroll through the vineyard as the sun set.

Day 324 - Fuzzy flower

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Day 322 - Hipstamatic for Iphone

There are a ton of camera apps for the iPhone. Most apps replicate the functions of the built-in camera app or add in a few additional functions such as adjustments, special filters and so on.

The Hipstamatic app takes a much different approach, turning your fancy iphone into a retro toy camera. From the moment you launch the app to viewing your first 'print' you soon realize that this app is much different than other phone apps, and a hundred times more fun.

The interface of the app is quite interesting, mimicking the back of an actual camera. The display requires you to rotate your camera to landscape mode, and suddenly your iPhone is a toy camera, complete with viewfinder.

The entire iPhone display is made to look like the back of a camera, with a variety of virtual options for lens, film and flash. The app comes with several film and lens presets and additional options can be purchased.

Once you have taken a picture the app 'prints' your photo and saves it to your photo roll. The image itself becomes heavily altered, most taking on a heavy cyan cast with serious curve adjustment baked in. An old style frame is added to a square format, which I find is the most attractive feature, giving the images the signature artsy retro look.

After work I dropped into several places that I have frequented during my daily photo project. I must say it was tremendously fun. An entirely new perspective opens up, very much like getting a brand new camera or lens. Not bad for a $1.99 app.

The app is certainly not perfect. There is no focus ability, at least that I could find (the flower shot below was pure luck to get in focus). And the viewfinder is not full frame, making framing and visualization a trial and error process.

Lastly, I wish there was a way to make a 'hipstamatic' image from an existing image in my photo library. But in terms of 'fun for the dollar' you are hard pressed to find a more enjoyable iphone camera app on the market today.

Monday, May 3, 2010

Day 320 - Harbour Hopper Graveyard

There are several Harbour Hopper skeletons residing at the corner of Maynard and Charles St in the north end.

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Day 319 - Harbour Queen Wheel

Day 318 - Mimi

Saturday we attended my friend's 40th birthday celebration. His cute daughter Mimi stole the show.

Day 317 - Italian Wine Tasting, Bishop's Cellar

On Friday we attended an Italian wine tasting at Bishop's Cellar. In my view Bishop's Cellar offers the best valued wine tastings in Halifax. Typically held each Friday, with prices normally in the $10-$30 range (depending on the wines served), you can always count on sampling 8-10 very high quality wines in a casual environment. I encourage anyone with an interest in wines to check out their newsletter and attend a tasting. Pictured is Retail Manager Alanna McIntyre pouring a decanted 2005 Paulo Scavino 'Carobic' Barolo.