Found on Bedrock


This building is in the Songhees development in Vic West. Sadly, the buildings that are on the waterfront in this prominent inner harbour development are hideous 80s-style pink and grey unimaginative stucco-clad warts on an otherwise beautiful harbour. This building, which is worthy of a prominent position on the waterfront, is hidden behind the warts. I had never even noticed it before, not often walking in this area, and when I do, I follow the waterfront walkway. Which should teach me something.

This shot was taken while walking around, cameras in hand, with Gary of the FilmAdvance photo blog. Inspired by the bad design along the waterfront, Gary led our conversation to a discussion of¬†Deiter Rams’ 10 principles of good design. I had not heard of them before, so he sent me this link, with the comment “read them and consider how badly designed most DSLRs are.” Gary is right, and I think this provides an explanation for why I have found shooting film to be liberating in many ways. Film cameras are by and large good design. Cameras like the Olympus XA models are more than good, they are in the genius category. Using them gives me so much pleasure with everything in the right place, and only the essentials, all of which work. In fact, they work better in most common photography situations than the more complex SLRs, even the well designed ones. And that pleasure, combined with the lack of obstacles like too-deep electronic menus and buttons in the wrong places and waaaay too many choices help me to be more creative, to focus on what I am doing and not how I am doing it. I am grateful for this enlightenment as I had wondered why film had jump-started my rusty old creative engine. Nice to have a stroll with cameras in hand combined with good conversation – photography, creativity, exercise, intellectual stimulation all in one package. That must hit most of the principles of good design.

This building is shot with expired Kodak Gold 200 film on my Olympus XA2 point and shoot. The film has colour shifted a fair bit. For this shot, conversion to black and white works a lot better for me than the colour (see below). For some of the photos, like yesterday’s Reflecting View, the colour works better than black and white.


I am out of town for a couple of days so might be slow replying to comments, but please leave comments, I will get to them.



Olympus XA2, ISO200, Kodak Gold 200 expired in 1990s




3 thoughts on “Found on Bedrock

  1. Pingback: Found on Bedrock II | burnt embers

  2. Not even any flowers trailing over the edge of those balconies. I wonder if the building banned them for the winter? In weather like this I can imagine all the inhabitants are inside uniformly making shepherd’s pie or roast chicken .


    • You may have put your finger on a draw back of this place. I suspect planting on deck is not allowed. Probably they have a draconian condo policy to keep the clean lines clean.


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