The Original Hipster

It doesn’t take Fathers Day for me to think about my Dad. I do all the time. Rachel asked me the other day if all this talk about Fathers was making me sad. A valid question. Thinking about it I had to say no, it doesn’t make me sad. At least no more than the pangs of sadness I get occasionally when I think of how much I miss him. On the contrary, I like thinking about my Dad. Its comforting to me knowing that I knew him. That he was a big part of my like and has helped shaped me to be the person I am today. I like the reminder and I more than anyone is a little surprised by that.

Newton History small-183

So to Dad… I do miss you but I talk to you every day. And if you could tell me where you left the clothes you’re wearing in this fishing trip, that would be awesome!

Going… going… gone…


I had the fortunate experience to go to Hawaii a couple of weeks ago with friends. We went to cheer on our buddy Alex who was participating in the Lavaman triathlon. While Alex started his race around 7:30am, we arrived around 8:30 as some of the participants were on the 40k cycling leg of the event. This is after their 1.5k swim of course. And before their 10k run. Anyway… we were driving down the highway and started to see some of the frontrunner bikers. We found a safe place to pull off and wait for Alex. We didn’t have to wait long (Alex is pretty good…) for him to go past and I grabbed this shot.

It was actually a hard shot to get. While I could have set a super fast shutter speed and kept the camera fixed to one spot, I wanted to get a blurred background while keeping him in focus as much as possible. A high risk shot because if I missed it, well, no picture of Alex. I was able to practice on a few other people with varied success. In essence, you try and move (or swing) the camera as the subject passes the lens all while trying to keep the subject in focus and in frame. If done correctly (the camera lens in sync with the moving subject), Alex will appear still with the world speeding past… which is a really neat effect to show speed. I don’t think I’m explaining this very well… I’m tired. But you probably get what I’m saying.

The top image is the original (with a little colour tweaking).

And of course, when it comes to photoshop, I just can’t help myself. I wanted it to look like Alex was turning into smoke. Also a somewhat challenging effect. The hardest part was removing Alex out of the picture entirely in one of the steps that went into the final image. If you look closely in the bottom picture, you can see through Alex where his body once was. That image had to be built into the photo because… well… Alex is in the original shot. But with the effect of him breaking apart, there needed to be image created on the other side of him. Easy to do if he was in front of a single colour backdrop. Not so much when there is road, beach and sky.

Anyway. I haven’t been active in the photo world for a while and this was very therapeutic. And I’m fairly happy with the result.

Good night.


This is me…

At work last week we had our own little ‘comic-con’ in the lobby of our studio. Some people were selling their wares while a few tables were set up and manned by actual comic book artists. One such artist was Nina Matsumoto. She does work for, among many other things, The Simpsons.

For $10, she would draw you as the latest citizen of Springfield. This is pretty much the most amazing thing that’s happened to me… ever.

Funny enough, as I was standing there, looking off into space as she madly put pencil to paper, all I could think about was “i really hope i don’t look like homer… i probably look like homer…”
After getting the picture and being completely stoked with it, it did occur to me that even as a Simpsons character, I do look a little… old.

Paul Simpson small

One. Year.

One full year has passed since my last blog update.

There are moments when I think a year has passed incredibly quickly. At the same time it feels like it’s been a lifetime since I was here. Two Weeks Till Friday is a shadow of my past. I love that I can come back and see what I was doing, what filled my thoughts and my days over the past 10 years. It saddens me that I’ve lost my voice to really say anything anymore. I wish I could say that I’ve occupied my times with brilliant adventures, genius ideas or magical dreams… but I haven’t really. I guess that’s what makes this blog bitter sweet for me; a window to my past but nothing more. If anything, a reminder that I’ve become… complacent. Boring. Uninspired.

I don’t know if I even have the strength to re-invent this. Facebook seems to assuage my need to tell the world what’s going on in my head. And of course, the brevity of Facebook has made me lazy. So very lazy. I imagine one day I will lift my eyes from my ipad and realize I’ve lost a decade of my life reading other people’s status updates. And I will wonder if my status updates equals a life worth lived. I doubt it will… And that makes me sad.

Of course, ironically, I know that there is no one out there reading this anymore. Even if I could resurrect this page to something awesome… no one is left out there to read. I am literally typing to no one. How odd of me. I guess communication to other people was never really the point. Or it shouldn’t have been. It was about me talking to my future self. Passing a reminder of what I had for dinner last night or what my latest anxiety was all about… or what my dog did last week. Or, or or or… I think I always hoped others would read my blog but now that I’ve been away, and I go back and read the posts of yesteryear, I now know it was really all for me. It’s always been about me.

One year. Gone. So much has happened and yet so little. Such is life.

One. Full. Year.

That being said, I received an email from a friend the other day about a new app he is working on. It sounds… intriguing. Perhaps I’ll post about that next…