Originally from Northern England, Alan Norsworthy has been a photographer since the late 1960's.

He moved to Canada in 1973 and has made Guelph Ontario his home for the last 24 years.

" I remember visiting the CN Tower in the early 70's and the guide said that as far as you could see in any direction is the best farmland in Canada. That comment echoes down the years as I watch subdivisions eat up the landscape."

The area around Guelph offers up a plethora of rural images which Alan captures with his artistic vision. His work covers everything from macro photographs of flowers, sweeping landscapes, historic buildings and old abandoned farms in both colour and Black and White.

"This is where I find my inspiration, I have a need to show people the beauty I see as I walk the woods and fields of Southern Ontario"

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Our Lady II

Our Lady II
Originally uploaded by Alan Norsworthy

This weekend I stayed close to home, adding to my "Guelph portfolio".

I visited some new area's and some well trodden places. My original destination was the new Guelph museum site which is coming along quite nicely.

Right next door is the "Church of our Lady Immaculate" Catholic Church.


Although I am not a religious person I find myself in awe of the architecture and love to wander old graveyards, churches and cathedrals.

This Church is a classic Gothic structure and offers oh so many photographic opportunities not the least being the statue that welcomes visitors to this magnificent place.

Early morning light played across the statue, gently lighting and sculpting her features. I decided to add an "Orton" effect to enhance that softness a slight vignette hepls to centre the eye.

Conversion to Black and White to finish the photograph, of course.

All photographs are there to remind us of what we forget. In this - as in other ways - they are the opposite of paintings. Paintings record what the painter remembers. Because each one of us forgets different things, a photo more than a painting may change its meaning according to who is looking at it. ~John Berger

Sunday, December 11, 2011

On Track

On Track
Originally uploaded by Alan Norsworthy

This weekend we decided to visit a local conservation area. However they are not run by photographers or they would open earlier than 8:30am !
So to pass the time we parked at the other end of the reservoir and wandered around exploring this new location.
Having no destination in mind allows the creative juices to flow, some paths taken, some ignored depending on what the eye see's and the mind interprets. A set of rails demanded to be explored. I took the shot my companion looked down the lines, a little disappointed at what he saw.
Usually we think alike, this time we didn't, maybe it was the cold wind that hit us as we left the lee of the tree's .....

Whatever the reason, it matters not because we were out for a "wander"

Wandering re-establishes the original harmony which once existed between man and the universe. ~Anatole France

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Fields of Silver

Fields of Silver
Originally uploaded by Alan Norsworthy

I love this time of year!

On Saturday my friends and I took an early morning walk along the Niska Road Trail. The fields were covered in hoar frost and everything was encrusted in tiny jewels that reflected and refracted the early morning light.

Every turn held scenes of Mother Natures handiwork, the hard part was to capture it.

All too soon the sun peaked the hills and treetops and, with that first kiss of warmth, it all vanished.

Photographers deal in things which are continually vanishing and when they have vanished there is no contrivance on earth which can make them come back again. ~Henri Cartier-Bresson

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Help Portrait - Team 4

Help Portrait - Team 4
Originally uploaded by Alan Norsworthy

Yesterday a whole crowd of like minded, giving people from our community gave up their Saturday to help others.
Help Portrait is a growing movement within the photographic community whose aim is to enable us to use our talents in service to others.

What you see here is a small part of that group, team 4, my group.

Back row: Tony, Santa's Brother aka Bob, Jeanne, yours truly
and Little Stephen in front :-)

and many, many, more unseen here but you know who you are.

Karen, Now I understand what you were trying to say ....

The world is moved along, not only by the mighty shoves of its heroes, but also by the aggregate of tiny pushes of each honest worker. ~Helen Keller

Sunday, November 20, 2011

What light through yonder window breaks

What light through yonder window breaks
Originally uploaded by Alan Norsworthy

Strange isn't it, how I look forward to a walk.

As much as I love exploring new places a walk in an old familiar place, in this case the highways and byways of the University of Guelph, brings a smile.
I don't know how many times I have taken this shortcut or how many times I have photographed it but every visit is new.
Every time, I see something differently.

A few years ago I walked the same path for a year. Watching the woods change.

Spring became summer, summer became autumn, which in turn became winter and finally spring returned again.
I learned a lot that year, I think it is time to do it again....

There is no season such delight can bring
As summer, autumn, winter and the spring.
~William Browne

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Guelph - The other side of the tracks

Guelph - The other side of the tracks
Originally uploaded by Alan Norsworthy

I've been thinking, dangerous I know, but a conversation I had with my friend Doug yesterday as we wandered around Guelph started this line of thought. We were discussing what, to us, makes a good image, why do we like one image versus another?
Is it because we created it?
How do we pass that emotion along to the viewer so that they may see as we do?

All of these questions led to more questions and an inner search for meaning and answers, which led me down this path ...

What drives us?
What sets us (photographers) apart from the rest?

To me the answers lie in: 
We 'feel' the world around us and in doing allows us to see all those mundane things in a different light.
It is this 'feeling' that allows us to see the world around us differently than most people.

For instance, have you ever stood and pondered a scene and had people stop, look, shrug and move on?
Ever had someone ask "what are you looking at?"
I know I have.

That "feeling" is the difference and it drives our desire to share what we 'see' with others.

And that desire--the strong desire to take pictures--is important. It borders on a need, based on a habit: the habit of seeing. Whether working or not, photographers are looking, seeing, and thinking about what they see, a habit that is both a pleasure and a problem, for we seldom capture in a single photograph the full expression of what we see and feel. It is the hope that we might express ourselves fully--and the evidence that other photographers have done so--that keep us taking pictures. 
- Seeing and Shooting Straight by Sam Abell

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Killarney - Atop "The Crack"

Killarney - Atop "The Crack"
Originally uploaded by Alan Norsworthy

It's strange, when I look back through all my images from Killarney I have an overwhelming sense of peace. The one word that comes to mind to explain that peace is 'solitude'.

However I was not alone, far from it.

We (well, I) need these places, these times to remind me of who I am ... just a country boy.

'Cos I'm just a country boy,
Money have I none.
But I've got silver in the stars,
And gold in the morning sun.
Gold in the morning sun.


Everybody needs beauty as well as bread, places to play in and pray in, where nature may heal and give strength to body and soul. ~John Muir

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Killarney - Moonshine

Killarney - Moonshine
Originally uploaded by Alan Norsworthy

It's funny how a word can conjure up a time, a place, a memory and bring a smile to your face.

Such a word is "Killarney"

Going back through the images of my trip I have memories of good times, I remember the who, the when, the where and the fellowship.

As we move through our workaday life it is these moments that sustain us, keep us sane.

All this wrapped up in one word "KIllarney" which is a part of the bigger word/phrase "The natural world".
In our concrete, artificial, air conditioned, well lit, world we become detached from what is real.

I mean when was the last time you stopped rushing around to look up, at the moon?

Places like Killarney should be visited by everyone, fortunately for we few who consider it necessary, not everyone does. That saddens me.

How hard it is to escape from places. However carefully one goes they hold you - you leave little bits of yourself fluttering on the fences - like rags and shreds of your very life. ~Katherine Mansfield

Monday, October 24, 2011

Bronte_Creek - The Kettle

Bronte_Creek - The Kettle
Originally uploaded by Alan Norsworthy

Every photographer must experience the same thing.

I saw this scene, stood for a few, long moments looking at it. Walked past and back, had another look. Then decided, yes this has potential, black and white potential.

Now I knew I could 'fix' the slight angle I had to shoot it at but I stood on tip toe anyway imagining the finished photo.

I wished for my polarizing filter to subdue the reflections in the glass but made do without it by maneuvering the reflections around by slight sideways adjustments to my position.

Thinking about this made me realise ....

The camera can photograph thought. ~Dirk Bogarde

Monday, October 17, 2011

Killarney - The Stand

Killarney - The Stand
Originally uploaded by Alan Norsworthy

This weekend past, indeed the whole week was a whirlwind of preparation and presentation.

I was part of a collective "Show and Sale" of the work generated by the Guelph Photographers Guild.
Preparing for such an event is no slight effort and being present and available for hour after hour was taxing on these old bones (and on younger bones than mine so I heard).
Still I would not have missed it for the world. The laughter and camaraderie of other the exhibitors combined with the wonderful comments from passers by washed the discomfort away.

Ahh more memories ....

Things that were hard to bear are sweet to remember. ~Seneca

Monday, October 10, 2011

Killarney - The end of the beginning

Killarney - The end of the beginning
Originally uploaded by Alan Norsworthy

Traveling again, this time a return journey to Killarney Provincial Park in Northern Ontario.

It's been 15 or so years since I was there, that time with my friend Grant. Who introduced me to me that wonderful place that is "The Crack".

This time I went with my friend Doug, who has never ventured far into the wilds of Ontario but was eager to go.

The Crack was singing it's siren song ...

It's not an easy hike, especially for an old fart like me but when I heard his reaction as he rounded the final bend and saw those lakes, the colours of fall and the white Quartzite mountain range surrounding him, it brought a smile to my face, an old memory seen through new eyes.

Sore muscles and tiredness forgotten.

I was lucky enough to have been shown this place and able to share it with a friend back then.

Now I am fortunate enough to take another and in doing, have passed it on to another friend, who, in turn, will find someone to share it with.

This is the stuff that memories are made of.

I soon realized that no journey carries one far unless, as it extends into the world around us, it goes an equal distance into the world within. ~Lillian Smith

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Westover Drumlin - Church

Westover Drumlin - Church
Originally uploaded by Alan Norsworthy

What I want to say today has nothing to do with the image but then again it has everything to do with it because it is a memory of a day filled with laughter and easy friendship.

What started out as a walk on a dreary, windy, gray morning ended with an evening surrounded by friends and family.

The day began with some wanderings, as usual plus a trip to visit with Don Corby who was hosting one of the Studio Tour locations. There I met Peter Young a fine art photographer who specialises in IR photography. Photographers are a strange rare breed I have yet to meet one who is not willing to share information and "tricks of his trade" it was the same with Peter who took the time to explain his camera's and techniques.

Later my wife Cathy had asked if I wanted to go out to celebrate my upcoming Birthday, a trip to my favourite Pub for curry and a pint who could refuse !
Unknown to me a crowd was gathering, all arranged by Cathy quite unbeknownst to me. It was quite a surprise as I started to recognise faces and realise I had been tricked, in a nice way.
What an evening, surrounded by friends and family, I am truly blessed. A wonderful wife, a great family and such good friends.

Thank you, one and all for a great evening...

But if the while I think on thee, dear friend,
All losses are restored and sorrows end.
~William Shakespeare

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Horse in the Mist

Horse in the Mist
Originally uploaded by Alan Norsworthy

I don't know what it is about horses and foggy mornings. There is a kind of magic in the air whenever I see them.

This particular morning the magic was strong magic,overpoweringly so. When I saw this scene through the viewfinder something clicked, not only in my camera but in my minds eye.

The real scene was considerably more dull and well, foggy, but my imagination saw a dreamscape instead of a landscape. Working with the image later, at home the illusion began to take shape and this is the result.

This is far and away from my usual workflow which is usually confined to a few clicks of the mouse to bring out the details. This time I was on a totally different path trying to pull out the surreal.

Horses and fog will do that too you, throw in a woodland setting and your in trouble :-)

It's not what you look at that matters, it's what you see. ~Henry David Thoreau

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Closer, Closer

Closer, Closer
Originally uploaded by Alan Norsworthy

It's funny how someone you have never met can become a friend and for someone you haven't seen in about 50 years remembers you as a friend.
Mike and Chris are such people.

Chris I knew as a kid growing up in England, she was a friend of my sisters. A year or so ago Chris found me via the internet. Since then her husband Mike and I have kept in touch through the common bond of photography.

This last month they came to Canada to visit Chris's relatives in Eastern Canada and took the time to travel to Ontario to see me. Well me and Niagara Falls ;-)

I enjoyed their company for a day at The Falls before they had to fly home. I spent the day  talking of old times with Chris and new times with Mike, a long day but a grand day.

Haste ye back guys ...

No road is long with good company. ~Turkish Proverb

Monday, September 12, 2011

Elmira Barn and the traveller

Elmira Barn
Originally uploaded by Alan Norsworthy

Early Sunday morning I visited a few local barns that I had had my eye on. The light was right so I ventured out.
This was the last of three and close to home.

As usual I parked off the edge of the road with my hazard lights flashing and wandered off the make this image. When I got back to the car and was putting my camera gear away a car, traveling in the other direction, stopped. The occupant, a young man asked if everything was alright. I smiled and said thanks and told him I was just taking photographs. His reply was
"well that's good I am never too busy to stop and offer help if it's needed"

That made my day, how long has it been since someone has done that for you?
Or more importantly how long has it been since you did that for someone else?

How far that little candle throws his beams!
So shines a good deed in a naughty world.
~William Shakespeare, Merchant of Venice,

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Newfoundland - The reason I went back.

Newfoundland - The reason I went back.
Originally uploaded by Alan Norsworthy

Well the real reason I went back was because my wife said I should. She could not get time off work but insisted I go alone, because she knew I wanted too. Go back that is but not necessarily alone.
She understands me better than I understand myself. I guess she saw my disappointment, although I tried to hide it and thought I had, when we visited in June. In a whirlwind of a few days the decision was made, the flight booked and I was on my way.

I was going seeking Icebergs, what I found, was me.

There are days when solitude is a heady wine that intoxicates you with freedom, others when it is a bitter tonic, and still others when it is a poison that makes you beat your head against the wall. ~Colette

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Newfoundland - Sitting on a rock, on "the RocK"

Newfoundland - Sitting on a rock on "the RocK"
Originally uploaded by Alan Norsworthy

Notes from my journal:
Onward to Great Brehat (Braa-at) and another of those hidden gems. This is such a joy but the icing on the cake was the path that lead to the top of the headland.

From here there is a panorama of blue sea, white ice and green grey rocks and cliffs. Add to all that is the scent of bayberry, talk about sensory overload. I sat there for quite a while and managed a self portrait sitting on the rocks overlooking the ocean.

I think I am getting a feel for this place now.

The solitude gives your mind a chance to wander, free like the circling gulls above.
The silence, the crunch of your boots on ancient rock, the wind in your ears, the sun on your back offer peace of mind.
A feeling of belonging, a place where everything is right with the world. It reminds me of a line from a Foster and Allen song ..
"and if you come broken, we'll see that you mend"
I can only describe it as Hauntingly beautiful

You will never be happy if you continue to search for what happiness consists of. You will never live if you are looking for the meaning of life. ~Albert Camus

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Leica Sunrise

Leica Sunrise
Originally uploaded by Alan Norsworthy

Just North of Guelph, early in the morning, we found a trail in the woods.
The sun, just rising and filtering through the mist and cast sunbeams along the way.

This is what makes mornings special.

I'll tell you how the sun rose a ribbon at a time. ~Emily Dickinson

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Industrial Vision - Sleeman Brewery

Industrial Vision - Sleeman Brewery
Originally uploaded by Alan Norsworthy

Our photo club challenge this month was a follow on from watching "Manufactured Landscapes" by Edward Burtynsky.
When I introduced it at our meeting my comment was "this movie will change the way you think and maybe the way you live."

My search for an Industrial image today was more than that, it was an eye opener to what is happening all around us.

Go see for yourself.

The means by which we live have outdistanced the ends for which we live. Our scientific power has outrun our spiritual power. We have guided missiles and misguided men. ~Martin Luther King, Jr., Strength to Love, 1963

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Safari Road - the long and winding path to morning

Safari Road - the long and winding path to morning
Originally uploaded by Alan Norsworthy

Rising early on a Saturday morning, to some, is madness.
I'm lucky to have enough crazy friends that I do not have to do it alone :-)

You can only come to the morning through the shadows. ~J.R.R. Tolkien

Monday, August 1, 2011

Serendipity - Sunflowers

Serendipity - Sunflowers
Originally uploaded by Alan Norsworthy

We were wandering the back roads this morning when we saw a lady frantically waving from the side of the road.
I stopped, she said "have you seen the sunflowers?" (frantically pointing over her shoulder).
In truth I would have driven right by. Thank you Margaret-Ann for pointing the way !

The flower offered of itself
And eloquently spoke
Of Gods
In languages of rainbows
And secret silence...
~Phillip Pulfrey, from Love, Abstraction and other Speculations, www.originals.net

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Elora Morning - The ruins

Elora Morning - The ruins
Originally uploaded by Alan Norsworthy

It has been quite a few weeks since I walked the path through the woods in Elora.
My first stop is always the old ruined mill.Then I continue on and wander through the woods to the bridge and back across the other side. I have walked here so many times and yet these paths never fail to offer up something new

If the sight of the blue skies fills you with joy, if a blade of grass springing up in the fields has power to move you, if the simple things of nature have a message that you understand, rejoice, for your soul is alive. ~Eleonora Duse

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Alien Landscape - IR

Alien Landscape - IR
Originally uploaded by Alan Norsworthy

In the early spring I came across this landscape and made an image in black and white, with a pledge to return in the height of summer.
Yesterday I went back with my Nikon D70 and a 720nm IR (Infra Red) filter to record what we cannot see with our eyes.

The quotation this week has been my e-mail tag line for quite a while now and seems appropriate...

In the right light, at the right time, everything is extraordinary. ~Aaron Rose

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Grindstone Creek - Feeling instead of Seeing

Grindstone Creek - Feeling instead of Seeing
Originally uploaded by Alan Norsworthy

 (click on the image to see the original)

Sometimes you have to stop looking for an image, listening and feeling your way instead.

Grindstone Creek tumbling along the Bruce Trail near Waterdown, Ontario is one of those places that draws you back time and time again.
The rushing waters remove the noises of the 'real' world. The tree's filter the light to dappled shade.
The sounds,
the smell of the earth,
the hardness of the rock formations,
the softness of the soil,
the solitude
and the quality of the light is what I am trying to capture here.

While there is perhaps a province in which the photograph can tell us nothing more than what we see with our own eyes, there is another in which it proves to us how little our eyes permit us to see. ~Dorothea Lange

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Newfoundland - Da swomp

Newfoundland - Da swomp
Originally uploaded by Alan Norsworthy

I have been captured and released;
Captured by her simple beauty and released from cares.
Cathy, my love, I owe you so much for taking me there.

I remember a hundred lovely lakes, and recall the fragrant breath of pine and fir and cedar and poplar trees. The trail has strung upon it, as upon a thread of silk, opalescent dawns and saffron sunsets. It has given me blessed release from care and worry and the troubled thinking of our modern day. It has been a return to the primitive and the peaceful. Whenever the pressure of our complex city life thins my blood and benumbs my brain, I seek relief in the trail; and when I hear the coyote wailing to the yellow dawn, my cares fall from me - I am happy. ~Hamlin Garland, McClure's, February 1899

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Newfoundland - St_John's, The Narrows

Newfoundland - St_John's, The Narrows
Originally uploaded by Alan Norsworthy

This is one of my favourite images from our trip to Newfoundland. So on this day I dedicate it to my Dad and to all the other Dad's and those who have lost their Dad's.

Happy Fathers Day.

When I was a boy of fourteen, my father was so ignorant I could hardly stand to have the old man around. But when I got to be twenty-one, I was astonished at how much he had learned in seven years. ~Author unknown, commonly attributed to Mark Twain

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Newfoundland - Quidi Vidi Cove

Newfoundland - Quidi Vidi Cove
Originally uploaded by Alan Norsworthy

We're back !
Our first day on "The Rock" was bright and sunny. The next morning the fog had rolled in and it stayed that way for most of the week ;-)
So, many of my shots are in Black and White, many look like a "hounds of the Baskerville" setting but that's Newfoundland for ya and when your given lemons you make lemonade!

Actually I think it is a plot by the Newfoundland Tourist Board, you land in sunshine and it makes you feel better. That gives Newfoundland enough time to work its magic and by day two you don't care about the weather ! :-)

On our first real day we stumbled on to Quidi Vidi cove (the home of the Quidi Vidi brewery) WOW, just WOW ....

Footfalls echo in the memory
Down the passage which we did not take
Towards the door we never opened
~T.S. Eliot

Newfoundland, I will be back, to walk down those passages and open those doors that I did not open on this trip.

Sunday, May 29, 2011

The Flatiron

The Flatiron
Originally uploaded by Alan Norsworthy

This weekend we ventured to Downtown Toronto. Not my favourite place but we had planned a trip to take in the Contact Festival and "Doors Open Toronto" this was our only chance.

There were two things I really wanted to photograph, this being the first of them.

Arriving in Downtown bright and early we were greeted by fog. I'm sure not everyone would be as pleased as I but fog removes the distracting visual noise from a scene and softens the impact of modern life.

I like this image, the massive skyscrapers are gone, vanished in the mists of time as it were and we are back 100 years to the days the flatiron was built.

So the image had to be sepia toned, black and white to give the 'feel' of what it was like back then, the vignette removed more of the modern day distractions.

Photography deals exquisitely with appearances, but nothing is what it appears to be. ~Duane Michals

Sunday, May 22, 2011

The way we were, Central GMC

The way we were, Central GMC
Originally uploaded by Alan Norsworthy

Central is where I take my car when it needs 'attention' and every-time I go I see this bright red GMC pickup.
Yesterday I had my Bronica loaded with Fuji Acros B&W film and as I walked past it whispered in my ear "now is the time to make an image of this fine piece of automotive history".
So I did,
I decided before I fired the shutter it needed to be 'sepia toned' and I needed the 2 signs in the image.
I am pleased with the result.

Be still with yourself until the object of your attention affirms your presence.
Minor White

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Einstein Cafe Magnolia's

Einstein Cafe Magnolia's
Originally uploaded by Alan Norsworthy

On Saturday I spent several hours crawling around in the mud at the UofG Arboretum hunting the elusive Trillium, Trout Lilly and Jack-in-the-Pulpit.
What I really wanted to capture was the magnificent Magnolia.
After leaving the Arboretum with dirty knee's and several images. I went over to the Farmers Market in the downtown. As I drove away I caught sight of the Magnolia's outside the Einstein's Cafe.
I couldn't believe my eye's!

Too me Magnolia tree's in bloom speak of Spring, their flowers only last a few days but what a show!

The Trillium were forgotten .... :-)

And Spring arose on the garden fair,
Like the Spirit of Love felt everywhere;
And each flower and herb on Earth's dark breast
rose from the dreams of its wintry rest.
~Percy Bysshe Shelley, "The Sensitive Plant"

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Young 'un

Young 'un
Originally uploaded by Alan Norsworthy

No I haven't finished prattling on about Algonquin. You have to go there to appreciate why.
Every Spring we go to see the moose, you would think that I have enough moose photo's now but that's only part of the reason I go.

To witness these magnificent creatures close up and free, to observe and listen as mothers interact with their young is a big part of it.
This very young male was at this point separated from "Mom" as she had crossed the highway merely feet from us.
He tried to follow, hesitated, went back but realised Mom wasn't coming to get him so very gingerly he climbed up to the road, looked both ways as good children do and plucked up the courage to cross.
Yes Mom was waiting and watching as Moms always do :-)

"What is man without the animals?
Without the beasts men would die of a great loneliness of spirit." -Chief Seattle

Happy Mothers Day to all the Mothers out there, human and animal :-)

Tuesday, May 3, 2011


Originally uploaded by Alan Norsworthy

Another trip to Algonquin is over but the feeling lingers on.
Great times, great scenery and magic around every corner.
This year my wife Cathy came along and she too fell under Algonquin's spell.

This was a lake sized beaver pond last year, now it's gone. The damn upstream blew out (or was blown up) which in turn, we think, blew out the lower damn draining both ponds.

Climb the mountains and get their good tidings. Nature's peace will flow into you as sunshine flows into trees. The winds will blow their own freshness into you, and the storms their energy, while cares will drop off like autumn leaves. ~John Muir

I couldn't resist an extra quote this week 
and I think my companions will agree with this one ...

I remember a hundred lovely lakes, and recall the fragrant breath of pine and fir and cedar and poplar trees.  The trail has strung upon it, as upon a thread of silk, opalescent dawns and saffron sunsets.  It has given me blessed release from care and worry and the troubled thinking of our modern day.  It has been a return to the primitive and the peaceful.  Whenever the pressure of our complex city life thins my blood and benumbs my brain, I seek relief in the trail; and when I hear the coyote wailing to the yellow dawn, my cares fall from me - I am happy.  ~Hamlin Garland, McClure's, February 1899

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Shhh - Algonquin

Shhh - Algonquin
Originally uploaded by Alan Norsworthy


Can you hear it?
I can.
Algonquin is calling, softly singing the siren song of old, come back, come back.
How can anyone who hears the call refuse it?
I know I cannot.
This was taken a year ago today, reworked on a dreary, Sunday morning, before I pack my bags :-)

The leaves of memory seemed to make
A mournful rustling in the dark.
~Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Fife Road Barn I

Fife Road Barn I
Originally uploaded by Alan Norsworthy

As I ventured out into a storm filled sky I seemed to think that winter was over.
I was mistaken, snow fell horizontally for much of the day, driven by a biting wind.

Winters last hurrah ?

Never be to sure when you face the Dark Lord of Winter ...

I am the Dark Lord of Winter
And all must fear my reign.
I preside over the long cold months of Winter
When the heat of life rests a barely glowing ember in my hands.
The months when stores from the harvest run low.
When hunting and foraging are the new sources of food.
The days which are more dark than they are light

I remember still the autumn when I first gained my power.

By mid-Winter my strength was full and fierce.
Yet all too soon...as is now...
The Spring weakens me and my footsteps grow heavy.
My sword weighs as a heavy burden to my hand.
The call of the Spring would sap the last of my strength
And bid me lay down my icy crown and slumber.

It is I who covers and consumes all that would be green.

I see through the eyes of the hunted and the hunter,
And draw the heat from the very earth.
All live and die by the law of my hands.
For I am merciless and unyielding
As the tempered steel of the sword I wield.
There are none who escape my rule
For I am everywhere and indomitable.

No creature may lay languid and unthinking,

As is so want under the hot Summer sun...
All must be keen and cunning to survive!
I bring strength and knowledge as my boon.
Each creature must face my challenge
To win these gifts.
Those who fail shall parish,
That is the unyielding law of my reign.

But do not think of me though as only harsh darkness!

Though I may steal a kiss of your precious heat
With the fall of each snowflake upon your cheek...
I am the sun of the cold Winter skies
Offering just enough nourishment to survive...
Despite the darkness of my reign,
You shall see not anything brighter nor brilliant,
Than the glittering whiteness of my snows.

Yet am I handsome and gentle.

For I forge each snowflake,
That falls softly upon the outstretched branches.
With the crisp wind I dance
In the mist of your breath...
Each riverbed I fashion
Into a glorious palace of ice...
So long as I rule shall my beauty remain.

Despite the struggles within my rule,

I am also peaceful and quiet.
The lonely wind blows across my barren fields,
With no leaf to idly rustle to its touch.
I am the intellect turned inwards,
Where thoughtful insight and wisdom is found.
You may find me in the quietness of your thoughts
As you stare out into the falling of my snow...

Forgive that each creature must face my harsh ordeal.

For I am the recession of rest after the exertion of growth.
Claiming back to the earth, that which was taken in life.
Without me there would be no release or respite...
With love, with fear, with understanding or respect
Remember me.
Remember me when you pass my final gate,
For I am the Dark Lord of Winter!

By: Greg Currie

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Niska Trail - I

Niska Trail - I
Originally uploaded by Alan Norsworthy

As trails go, the Niska Road trail in Guelph is not very long but every spring it offers up these little streams and every spring I visit them, they are like old friends now.

Within a month they will be gone as the wetlands that birthed them dry up but while they are flowing they offer so many photographic opportunities.

Rippling water, dappled shade from the old tree's what a wonderful place.

You could not step twice into the same rivers;
for other waters are ever flowing on to you.
- Heraclitus of Ephesus

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Algonquin - Whiskey Rapids

Algonquin - Whiskey Rapids
Originally uploaded by Alan Norsworthy

Today I was strolling down memory lane, looking at images from this time last year.
Whiskey Rapids in Algonquin was a bit of a disappointment, I was looking for class 1 whitewater !
Oh well, it did bring to mind the annual trip to this magnificent part of the world. A trip that is becoming an annual event.
This image brought back memories, not only of other images from the trip but memories of shared laughter, warm evenings and warmer friendships.

Soon it will be time to make more memories as we plan the next trip.

We do not remember days; we remember moments. ~Cesare Pavese, The Burning Brand

Sunday, March 27, 2011


Originally uploaded by Alan Norsworthy

Today Grant put on a portrait workshop for the Guelph Photographers Guild.
I asked Brit to come with me to allow me another chance to get a portrait of her.

The idea was to use the studio setup to make a portrait with my Hasselblad, unfortunately the Hasselblad or the wireless setup wouldn't co-operate so I took 2 quick images with my D300.

This is one of them.

Thank you sweetie for putting up with me and my strange friends for 2 hours just so that I might steal 1/180 second of your life to brag about.

What greater thing is there for human souls than to feel that they are joined for life - to be with each other in silent unspeakable memories. ~George Eliot

Monday, March 21, 2011

Lone Pine Sunrise

Lone Pine sunrise
Originally uploaded by Alan Norsworthy

It was the night of the 'supermoon', these news people really get carried away don't they!

Well it started off as a Moon set trip. I knew where I wanted to go and when. Unfortunately a bank of cloud put paid to that idea....
So when you are given lemons you make lemonade, so I waited for the sunrise instead.

I must be getting soft or getting used to the above zero temperatures. The temperature was only -7c but my hands were so stiff I could hardly work the camera. It was only a couple of weeks ago I was scoffing at the "glove wearers" ....

Happy vernal equinox

It was one of those March days when the sun shines hot and the wind blows cold: when it is summer in the light, and winter in the shade. ~Charles Dickens

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Un Autre Monde (Another World)

Un Autre Monde (Another World)
Originally uploaded by Alan Norsworthy

A change of pace yesterday. Doug, Grant, John and I visited Glen Williams Ontario.
I must say that I have never been in a friendlier place since Lunenberg NS
Even at this 'blah' time of year this is a pretty little town, it's inhabitants elevate it beyond the average.

Here you find an enclave of artists and store owners who are passionate about what they do and it shows.

A breath of fresh air in a world of mediocrity.

What was any art but a mould in which to imprison for a moment the shining elusive element which is life itself - life hurrying past us and running away, too strong to stop, too sweet to lose. ~Willa Cather

Sunday, March 6, 2011

The Photographer

The Photographer
Originally uploaded by Alan Norsworthy

Saturday was wet, very wet.
Doug and I headed over to the Farmers Market here in Guelph. The market was just re-opening after some roof repairs so the atmosphere was like a homecoming.
We met with KC at his stall and chatted for a while then JohnQ showed up, the merry band of brothers was growing.
Down through the market to visit with Bunny at her stall. More banter and along came Matt.
2 hours went by, I had barely lifted my camera!

Eventually we Doug, JohnQ and I wandered off in search of tea and another 2 hours disappeared.
No photo's yet but a Saturday morning well spent in camaraderie, easy banter and tea ..... yeah!

So only my thoughts this week, plus a photo of my new toy.

In closing, the lesson learned yesterday ...

It takes a long time to grow an old friend. ~John Leonard

Sunday, February 27, 2011

Visual Haiku

Visual Haiku
Originally uploaded by Alan Norsworthy

Everyone was busy this weekend so it was one of those increasingly rare days when I went out alone.
I had decided on a long drive but at the last minute changed my mind and went to the Arboretum in the UofG.

My choice today was my Nikon F4 loaded with Kodak BW400CN film with my Nikkor 50mm f/1.4 AiS. My D300 sported my Nikkor 85mm f/1.8 AiS. That's it, no bag of gear just 2 camera's and 2 fast lenses.

The trails were rutted, frozen and slippery, a difficult place to walk without concentrating on where to put your next step but I already knew what I was looking for ...

It took about an hour to find it.

Plenty of time to ponder, wander and think about my favourite season, about how amazing life is.
That something that seems so fragile can survive our winters and yet come to life in the Spring.

The wheel turns.

Of winter's lifeless world each tree
Now seems a perfect part;
Yet each one holds summer's secret
Deep down within its heart.
~Charles G. Stater

Monday, February 21, 2011

Self Portrait

Self Portrait
Originally uploaded by Alan Norsworthy

What is this ?

This unending need, to see, to experience, to witness, to create.

Just to be "out there".

Here I am sitting on an old stool, in a derelict building, in the middle of a Canadian winter, camera in hand and loving every minute of it.

Ah yes! now I know what I am doing, all of the above is but a means to an end

The goal of life is to make your heartbeat match the beat of the universe, to match your nature with Nature. ~Joseph Campbell

Yes that's what I am doing ......

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Tie Tacks

Tie Tacks
Originally uploaded by Alan Norsworthy

Last evening I was talking with my friend Doug about how he was planning a studio session shooting some of his memento's handed down from his father.
This fired my imagination and I too dug out some of the things given to me by my Dad.

These tie tacks were my Grandfathers and possibly belonged to his father before him.
I have no idea who the person is in the portrait, although I wish I knew.

To live in hearts we leave behind
Is not to die.
~Thomas Campbell, Hallowed Ground

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Streetcar on Queen

Streetcar on Queen
Originally uploaded by Alan Norsworthy

This place is foreign to me, but once in a while I visit.


I am uncomfortable here, the unrelenting noise, the hustle and bustle, car horns, sirens, the clatter of the streetcar, all jangle my nerves.

Yet still I go back ..


Probably to remind myself why I left !

There is a pleasure in the pathless woods,
There is a rapture on the lonely shore,
There is society, where none intrudes,
By the deep sea, and music in its roar:
I love not man the less, but Nature more.
~George Gordon, Lord Byron, Childe Harold's Pilgrimage

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Birthday Girl

Birthday Girl
Originally uploaded by Alan Norsworthy

Recently I bought myself a new softbox, backdrop and reflector set. My intent is to learn more about portraiture. Yesterday was my daughters birthday so I used it as an excuse to make this image of her.

I think every father will understand and nod sagely at these words:

Certain is it that there is no kind of affection so purely angelic as of a father to a daughter.
In love to our wives there is desire;
to our sons, ambition;
but to our daughters there is something which there are no words to express. ~Joseph Addison

Happy Birthday sweetheart.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Everton Walk - Fields of Gold

Everton Walk - Fields of Gold
Originally uploaded by Alan Norsworthy

Serendipity - We took the long way home from our trip to Everton Mill on Saturday, down side roads seldom, if ever driven.
We were rewarded by this classic winter scene. - Serendipity.

Have I mentioned how much I love winter? The silence is what gets me every time, the wind in the tree's, the crunch of snow underfoot, the occasional chickadee calling. I guess you could call me "the snow man" :-)

"One must have a mind of winter
To regard the frost and boughs
Of the pine-trees crusted with snow;
And have been cold a long time
To behold the junipers shagged with ice,
The spruces rough in the distant glitter

Of the January sun; and not to think

Of any misery in the sound of the wind,
In the sound of a few leaves."
- Wallace Stevens, The Snow Man, 1923

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Algonquin Sunset

Algonquin Sunset
Originally uploaded by Alan Norsworthy

In response to a new challenge on our club site I was looking back over my images from 2010.
When I got to the Algonquin series I happened upon this shot. Taken at sundown, in the early spring, during our "annual moose hunt" (with camera's not guns) This image brought back so many memories, memories of good times with friends and the wonderful tranquility that is Algonquin Park.

We do not remember days; we remember moments. ~Cesare Pavese, The Burning Brand

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Grindstone Creek Marsh

Grindstone Creek Marsh I
Originally uploaded by Alan Norsworthy

When we decided to visit Grindstone Creek marsh I had an image in mind. Unfortunately, as so often happens, the weather didn't cooperate.
I wanted rays from the rising sun slanting across the frozen marsh, Oh well, "when the weather hands you lemons, you make lemonade" ;-)

The temperature was about -10c and the snow was drifting slowly downwards, a great time to be out in the woods and fields.

I spent many hours over the Christmas break poring over Ansell Adams work. He is such an inspiration. Too me he was a true master. However, I can only try to emulate, never duplicate or overtake what he accomplished, trying to even come close is damned near impossible!

So, one of his thoughts to ponder ...

"A great photograph is a full expression of what one feels about what is being photographed in the deepest sense, and is, thereby, a true expression of what one feels about life in its entirety". ~Ansel Adams

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Little Cove Dawn

Little Cove Dawn
Originally uploaded by Alan Norsworthy

During the Christmas break two friends and I took another trip north to the Bruce Peninsula.
We stayed overnight in Tobermory and Grant suggested a visit to Little Cove as it was close to where we were staying.
We awoke early in anticipation of a Georgian Bay dawn and were at the cove well ahead of sunrise. The only living souls around except for a red fox that we disturbed.
The sunrise did not burst across the bay as we had hoped but it softly lit the cloud cover. The reflections on the calm surface of the bay mirrored the sky.
I made many images in the two hours we were there but when I saw this one through my viewfinder I knew it was the one.
Little Cove on a cold, snowy morning, with friends, what a great day!

The color of springtime is in the flowers, the color of winter is in the imagination. ~Terri Guillemets