Remembering Code

Twelve years ago this morning, my cat Code did not jump on my shoulder to wake me.

It turned out that she had fallen from the balcony – in spite of the anti-pigeon netting. It was a particularly sucky day for me. I guess August, cats and I are not a good mix.

I’m still missing Debug a lot.

My life is getting to be as normal as a cat-less life can be.

August In Idle…

I’ve been on a blah kind of cruise control this month.

Of course, it all started with losing Debug. The first couple of weeks were really hard; especially at night. I missed how she would always climb onto my chest and sit there purring for awhile before settling in beside my leg. Now the palpable loss is more like a dull throbbing headache. I think of her often and wish she was still here.

I stopped working on 3D stuff. I haven’t really gone out for a proper photowalk even though I keep thinking about it. Work has been grating my patience. It feels like everything sucks.

LEGO Big Ben progress - 1The only progressive work I’ve managed is working on my Lego models. The mis-named Big Ben model is taking some shape.

I took this handheld shot with my 50mm prime lens so that I could ensure the depth of field blurring.

My best guess is that I am about 33% complete. The roofing on the Houses Of Parliament façade should come next. Then the rest of the model will be focused on the Elizabeth Tower.

The newest Lego Architecture sets are ready to be built after this one.

First Light – The New Sigma 10-20mm Lens

I mentioned last week that I had bought a highly recommended Sigma wide-angle lens. Here are the first photos taken with that new glass.

First Light - Sigma 10-20mmNext door, three new condominium towers are being built.

This photo consisted of me mounting the lens on my EOS-80D, stepping out on to my balcony and taking this photo at 10mm. I am impressed that that focal length captures the construction in the foreground (which will become a smaller tower) and the crane on the top of the main tower.

I tried to keep post-processing to a minimum here. I kept to the basics with some straightening and sharpening. My goal was to preserve what the lens “saw” as much as possible.

A few hours after that first shot was taken, a storm came rumbling over Etobicoke. There wasn’t a lot of rain – but it was a welcome relief from the day’s heat. I grabbed the camera again.

First Light - A Coming StormThis time, I was aiming across Mabelle Avenue. The sun was not quite ready to set, but some orange colour was on the horizon.

As before, I primarily straighten and sharpened in Photoshop. I did tweak a little bit to emphasize the clouds.

I am going to enjoy shooting with this focal range. I can’t wait to find more interesting subjects for it.

Keeping My Mind Busy

In an effort to keep my thinking away from the event of Friday afternoon, I am going to delve into building the long-procrastinated, big LEGO project I have here. Big Ben.

I am one of those pedantic types that rankles at this structure being called Big Ben. The bell is called “Big Ben,” while the tower is “The Elizabeth Tower.” I’m not sure why that annoys me so much…

Another major London landmark that is available in LEGO is the Tower Bridge. I will very likely acquire that one next.

Yesterday, I also went over to Henry’s Camera Store and bought the wide-angle Sigma 10-20mm f/3.5 lens. This lens was highly recommended to me at Photoshop World. Even with the cropped sensor factor of my EOS 80D, this lens is wider than any of my other lenses.

I’m looking forward to finding some magnificent ceilings to photograph. Wide-angle lenses give the sense of epic grandeur to cathedrals and museums when the camera is angled upward. So that could be fun.

Over in the digital art world, I am very close to finishing up the unwrapping of my bell tower model.

I will probably make a video introducing RizomUV in the near future. I am not sure if I will aim for creating a tutorial series though.

R.I.P. Debug (2006–2018)

Thank-you Debug for twelve wonderful years. Years of love, purring, cuddles and wake-ups better than any alarm clock.

We’ve been through a lot together. Four apartments, a house, two continental moves.

You were just a kitten at my first apartment in Etobicoke. Code had fallen from the balcony and left a void that you quickly filled.

Debug and boxesWe were not there very long; Microsoft had hired me and we moved to the apartment in Irving, Texas. I bought an inflatable mattress to sleep on and you immediately punctured it. I slept at a weird angle for weeks until the rest of my stuff arrived from Canada.

A couple of years later, I was able to buy the house on Raton Pass. What a great place that was! You loved the extra room. There were so many places where you could sleep in a beam of sunlight. We spent nearly 8 years down there until my visa expired.

After returning to Canada, we spent a year in Hamilton while I endured the commute from hell. I often came home grumpy and tired. But you always made me feel better. We’d chill on the couch watching Game Of Thrones.

Debug - July 31 2018Then we came full-circle and moved back to Etobicoke. Several blocks south of where we started.

Today I have to let you go. I’m going to miss you so damn much.

Peace Sweetie. You deserve it.