Thursday, September 11, 2008

A diversion: Pandas!

Everyone loves Giant Pandas.

Sometime during the 1980s the Toronto Zoo acquired a pair of loaner Giant Pandas from China.

On a frigid winter day I visited the pandas, which were housed in an enclosure excruciatingly far from the main gate-- what had previously been the home of the Japanese Raccoon-like Dogs (Nyctereutes procyonoides). Poor bumped dogs. Although interesting and attractive in their own way, no dog, no other species, has the wowness of the monarchs of charismatic macrofauna.

Show me the Pandas!

I carried my first SLR--a Minolta, a 200 mm lens, and reels of black and white film that had been stashed in a file-card box, souvenirs of a high school photography club. For Giant Pandas, black and white is entirely appropriate.

This week I found a handful of the resulting prints in a shoebox. Snapshots (an archaic word) are the reason shoeboxes last longer than shoes.

In the 1980s was there Photoshop? Now there is. If only I really knew how to use it.
Raw.

Smart blur.

Poster edges.


Cross-hatch.

Glass.

Cut-out (and paint bucket).

Watercolor.

Recommendation: for Red Pandas, use colour.

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