On the way to Canada
It’s been about two weeks since I made a new posting. One reason is that the last one was my 18th anniversary post, so I thought that I’d leave that up at the top for a while.
Another reason, though, is that I’ve been busy developing film. That’s because, shortly before I made that anniversary posting, I returned home from another trip to Canada with Dane St. Clair and Erica Jay. Last year, Dane, Erica and I made a road trip up to Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island and (on the way back) New Brunswick. Those are three of the four maritime provinces of Canada, the other being Newfoundland and Labrador. (Yes, the official name of that province now includes the island and mainland segments.)
I had considered going up to Newfoundland and Labrador this year, but I figured that to do a trip like that properly would take about three weeks (including six days just getting there and back), and I just didn’t have that much vacation time to use. Instead, we settled for a less ambitious return – just to New Brunswick.
Dinner at the China Dine-ah in Maine
We didn’t do it alone, though. On last year’s trip, we met a couple of Canadian photographers who live in the Saint John area – Jorgen Klausen (who’s originally from Denmark) and Real Film Fotos. (No, that’s not the latter’s real name but yes, that is what he wishes to be called.) I had stayed in touch with them, and we came up with an idea for a “madcap” (in Real Film’s words) photo shoot for a couple of days with Erica and Dane and two local models – and that’s what we did.
The first day was a difficult one, driving from Brooklyn all the way up to Saint John, most of it through unrelenting torrential rain. The visibility was so bad that for much of the way I had to drive well below the speed limit (and yet there were a**holes on the road driving without their lights on). We didn’t cross the border into Canada until around 11:20 pm – and when we crossed the border the time immediately became 12:20 am, with another hour and a half of driving still ahead.
Erica and Dane
I guess it’s good that the weather rained itself out that day, as the next day – our first photographing day – was better. Jorgen had managed to get us access to a private waterside location on the Bay of Fundy, which boasts the highest tides in the world (up to 54 feet). When we arrived the tide was out far enough for us to work, with many of the rocks covered with seaweed as they spend much of their time underwater when the tide comes in – and the tide was coming in!
I began by photographing Erica and Dane, later switching to work with one of the local models, Hilari Ty. Before finishing, I made a few photos with the other local model, Alishia Gabraelle. (Both Hilari and Alishia are also very good artists themselves.) After a few hours, when the tide came in enough to make us retreat to higher ground, our two Canadian hosts treated all of us to a wonderful picnic lunch which everybody enjoyed. We had originally planned to photograph in the morning and later in the afternoon, but given the tidal situation and the fact that many of us were tired from getting to bed late and getting up early, we decided to call it a day – at least for photographing.
Later, everybody came over to Real Film’s house (where we were staying for two nights) where we all had an enjoyable dinner where we discussed art, photography and Canada and looked at photos, too. That evening, after dinner, Real Film took the time to show his camera collection to Dane and Erica, and he and I both explained how cameras work, and things like the difference between SLR and rangefinder cameras.
The next day, we all met again and went to a different location on the Bay of Fundy. This one was on public land so we had to keep an eye open for other people coming by. After a couple of hours, people did begin coming by, so we had to leave, but not after I had made some good photos with Dane and Alishia. We then went back to the private location where we had been the day before, where we photographed all four models together for the first time.
Real Film Fotos with Hilari and Alishia
After lunch at a nearby seaside restaurant, Dane, Erica and I parted company with our Canadian friends and rode further east to Alma, New Brunswick, where we spent a night in the same motel (and the same room) where we had stayed last year. The following morning, we got up early and went back to one of the locations where we had photographed last year.
Following that successful photo session, we went back to Alma for breakfast at our favorite restaurant from last year. After that, we started heading back home, stopping for a while in Saint John at the gallery where Alishia and Jorgen work. It was good to see them one more time, and we discussed the possibility of an exhibit there next year with photos from the prior two days.
Then it was back home, crossing back into the U.S. late in the afternoon and stopping for dinner near Bangor, Maine. We didn’t get to our hotel in Brunswick until well after 11 pm, which affected our plan for the following morning, somewhat. Before heading back to New York, I had planned to photograph Erica and Dane at a waterside location, but after looking at the map, I realized that the location was about an hour’s drive from the hotel in the direction away from New York. Given that, doing the photo shoot would have added close to five hours to our day, which would have gotten us back to New York later than we wanted to arrive.
Therefore, that particular photo session had to be cancelled – or, hopefully, just postponed. Still, the trip was a success overall, with three mornings of good photography, plus the chance to see old friends and make new ones. I’ll be posting my black & white photos from the trip in the future, along with photos from last year’s trip to Canada (the vast majority of which I have not yet posted), this year’s trip to Iceland, previous years’ trips to Asia and Europe…….and so on.
As always, stay tuned.
Real Film Fotos with Erica and Dane
Erica in Alma
Dane in Maine