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Thoughts about the relationships between transport and the urban area it serves

Archive for the ‘photography’ Category

Weekly Photo Challenge: A Face in the Crowd

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A Face in the Crowd

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“Explore the use of anonymity to express both that which is common to all of us and the uniqueness that stands out even when the most obvious parts of us are hidden.”

I was stumped by the challenge at first, but then I looked at a couple of recent images that I had taken of the newly refurbished plaza in front of the Vancouver Art Gallery. The original is posted on flickr but this version is cropped to better meet the challenge.

It was a sponsored food truck event, part of the Dine Out festival. I was surprised at the number of people willing to stand outside and eat in this kind of weather. I wasn’t intentionally anonymizing people – but their umbrellas, and the truck awning, did that nicely. This one is, I think, a better photo but you can actually make out some faces.

Written by Stephen Rees

February 21, 2018 at 11:26 am

Weekly Photo Challenge: Sweet

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Sweet

And you can't get them anywhere elseIMG_4543IMG_8813IMG_8058IMG_4754IMG_7000IMG_5861

And now, if you will excuse me, I have to go take a gliclazide.

Written by Stephen Rees

February 14, 2018 at 10:50 am

Weekly Photo Challenge: Tour Guide

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Tour Guide

Share with us an image, or two, or three, (or more!) of where you live. For bonus points, tell us what it is about the photo(s) that you love.

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Vancouver BC sits on the Burrard Inlet, one of the finest natural harbours anywhere. I recommend using the SeaBus to get across it – at weekends and in the evening one of the cheapest harbour tours anywhere.

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Vancouver has magnificent beaches, clean water and very safe swimming. Tourists tend to go for the “standard sights” like Stanley Park, or the Steam Clock in Gastown. I would recommend you set aside some time just to relax, go sit on the beach and admire the scenery.

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If you feel like a bit of exercise go for a walk in the woods. On the North Shore are a couple of reservoirs in closed watersheds, with old growth forests and many trails. This one is Capilano but Seymour is just as good.

Written by Stephen Rees

February 7, 2018 at 12:49 pm

Weekly Photo Challenge: Beloved

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Written by Stephen Rees

January 31, 2018 at 9:44 am

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Sharing Photos

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Photo by Stephy Miehle on Unsplash location 3900 N Sheridan Rd, Chicago, United States

I had not heard of Unsplash until I read this post on Medium which recommends giving away your photos for free. According to the author, he not only gets lots of thanks but also “substantial monetary gifts from people showing their appreciation for letting them use my work.”

What I do is license my photos on flickr using a Creative Commons license. And apparently I should use a newer version, but I will get around to that discussion later.

Right now I have recently been introduced to Pixsy which is also free which can track just where on the web my flickr photos are being used. A significant number are indeed following the terms and conditions set out in the license. None so far has either thanked me or showed their appreciation in more tangible form.

A couple of commercial users have actually made payments for specific uses of my pictures. But they did that some time ago, asked nicely before they used the picture and then some time elapsed before payment arrived. None of this has anything to do with Pixsy. And by “a couple” I mean exactly that. Two in twelve years.

Pixsy does also offer to help with resolutions. I have had a few hosting sites write to me and tell me that the commercial uses of my pictures that Pixsy found have been removed. Some other sites have simply vanished altogether. But there are a number of ongoing cases – and more that will not be resolved. Here are some of the replies I have had.

Case Update: Not Accepted – Unsupported Country

Dear Stephen,

Thank you for your submission to Pixsy’s Case Resolution Services.

Our Case Management Team identified that the infringing site, in this case, is located outside of our current coverage area.

…[details of my picture and its use here]

As a reminder, pages located in Russia, Africa, Southeast Asia and other select countries are not suitable for Pixsy’s Resolution Services, as we do not anticipate expanding to these jurisdictions soon.

So much for that then.

I have also had a number of responses from site owners like this one

Thank you for your email; however the URL in question [URL appears here] , is not on the [specified] network.

So that goes back to Pixsy and gets a response like this

I’m sorry your Takedown Notice wasn’t initially successful. This can happen when image users move server infrastructure. In this case it looks like they were previously part of the [named] network but are now part of [another named network].
Please try forwarding the original email to [abuse (at) new network]

Some others are still in process and they did tell me how they are doing overall

As 2017 came to a close, we celebrated a number of milestones – including passing 20,000 user signups! We are so thrilled to be helping creators from 72 countries find and fight image theft. Since our launch in 2015, your reactions, support, and trust hascontinued to energize and reinforce our mission to support your creativity and protect your copyright.

Together the Pixsy community has achieved some impressive numbers: (… and counting)

  • 21,951 users from 72 countries

  • 25,342,934 images uploaded and #ProtectedbyPixsy

  • 162,924,315 matches found

  • 35,881 cases submitted to Pixsy for resolution

  • 26 partner law firms

  • 1 dedicated Pixsy team

  • 1 united mission to Find & Fight Image Theft

So that seems like a good reason to hope that we get a bit of result now and then – although the number of successfully completed cases (i.e. where the miscreants actually paid up or took down the image) is missing from the stats.

POSTSCRIPT
I did write to one of the offending commercial sites using the contact form on their web page. Within 24 hours I got this reply

“Thank you for bringing this to our attention, the image has been removed. ”

Which isn’t monetary reward but does acknowledge responsibility.

But what I want to know is if there is such a good source of free pictures as Unsplash why do people keep taking stuff which ought to be paid for?

Because I also got

Our Case Management Team identified the site you submitted as a spam or scraper site.

[image and URL details here]

“Scraper” sites aggregate pictures, articles and other copyrighted material from all over the web. Many of these sites do not host the images themselves–they hotlink from third parties– and are often operated by persons or entities outside Pixsy’s current coverage area. For these reasons, they are extremely difficult to track down and hold accountable.

Given the circumstances, the likelihood of obtaining a license fee payment in this situation is very low and we are unable to accept your case.

So when I started writing this I thought that it would help me straighten out my thinking and get me to a decision. You know, like the experience I often have of “I didn’t know what I thought about that until I heard what I was saying.” But I haven’t so I am hoping to see something useful in the comments.

By the way, I also wrote about this on my other blog but I really did not like the way Google’s Blogger handles my pictures – you just get the link not the image

Written by Stephen Rees

January 24, 2018 at 4:55 pm

Posted in photography

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Weekly Photo Challenge: Variations on a Theme

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Variations on a Theme can include “a series of shots showing the same place, person, or object in slightly different light’. So there are a number of possibilities that occurred to me. One was the shot out of the window as the weather or light changes. I have a lot of those. Or one of my early albums on flickr “36 Views of Mount Baker

But then there is also my passion for beer – especially, but not exclusively – strong, black stout. Thanks to the explosion of craft brewers here and elsewhere I get to try plenty of these. I have tried a number of ways to at least record the different brews which means a well lit close up with an undistracting background. Always indoors, of course, so it must be somewhere clean and tidy. After a lot of different attempts I found the stove top to be ideal for my purposes. The flat glass top is usually clean and bare, when not in use, and the tiled backsplash is kept clean. There is also good lighting in the over the range combined hood and microwave. Just the place to display the stout bottle and the freshly poured glass full. Here are just a few of the recent ones. There are more (nearly 100 more at present) on the flickr album.

Perfect Storm

Barkerville Brewing 52 Foot Stout

Creepy Unkle Dunkel

Stoutnik

iStout

Goliat Imperial Stout

Big Rock Midnight Rhapsody

Samuel Smith Oatmeal Stout

Doan's Rye Stout

Postmark Oyster Stout

Bridge All Out Stout

Young's Double Chocolate Stout

Written by Stephen Rees

January 24, 2018 at 12:41 pm

WPC: Silence

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via Photo Challenge: Silence

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I am a bit dubious about a challenge that asks for silence but then illustrates it with a picture of the ocean – at Big Sur – and states

The only sounds came from the ocean, the birds, and the chapel bells that rang several times a day.

Sorry Cheri that does not sound like silence to me. Now, on the top of a mountain there might be birdsong – and probably the noise of the wind – but I do not recall there was much of either at this location. Manning Park, southern BC, and in what the map said were “subalpine meadows” next to Blackwall Peak (2063m). One of the quietest places I can recall because at the end of September there were very few people.

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Pingback notes  the top link takes you to a much earlier WordPress challenge – not today’s photo challenge. That is embedded in the text above the map. Odd how often WordPress challenges muck up pingbacks. The first one comes from using the “post about silence” tag in the WordPress reader version. The second from the instructions from the DailyPost version.

Written by Stephen Rees

January 17, 2018 at 11:05 am

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