It’s been 7-weeks since my last post — it seems much longer.
In the meantime, I’ve moved across town to a much different kind of life — away from the hustle-and-bustle of downtown Victoria, BC, to a relatively quiet redoubt on the outskirts of town.
Having said that, I’ve avoided the ’burbs, trading the large studio space I enjoyed for the last 13-years for a smaller, lower-floor editing office, while gaining a two-car garage/cum studio, which is presently jammed to the rafters with goodness-knows-what kind of impedimenta (how the hell did I fit all this crap in the last (overall smaller) place?
The last 6-weeks have been a whirlwind of painting and renovations, not to mention the replacement of my main computer’s hard-drive. I’ve had little time to do more than photograph the destruction and construction, post a few pictures to Instagram, and question my sanity.
Isn’t digital photography fun?
Apple alerted me to the potential failure of my iMac’s 3 terabyte “Fusion (solid-state/hard) Drive” last year. But I couldn’t afford the downtime to see to it.
The forced downtime during the move seemed like the perfect opportunity to attend to this critical IT issue. I scheduled the repair with Apple and one of their local technical representatives, packed the iMac into its original box (one of many cluttering my storage space) and dropped it off for repair, days before the Big Move.
A month passed before I could attend to the aforementioned technical demands.
Because other ongoing glitches plagued the system, we (Apple and I) opted for a clean install. The repaired iMac came with the latest OS, El Capitan (version 10.11). Of course, this option required importing all my files — pictures, documents, etc, — from a Time Machine backup on my Pegasus raid system, then reinstallation of all applications. That wouldn’t be so bad, but for the myriad of custom settings in, say, Photoshop, which had to be ferreted out of their former locations and restored. Thank goodness for Time Machine and Apple support, which is still, despite recently opening a support office in India, second to none.
At this writing, I’ve got things up and running, for the most part.
Taking care of business
Preparing the office was another thing entirely. The space was originally a lower-level bedroom, complete with wall-to-wall carpet. That had to go.
In fact, the whole house was carpeted in cream-coloured broadloom that must have been manufactured by the boatload in the ‘80s. The former-owner had decided to take this “tobacco-stain” tone as a template for the whole interior — walls, curtains, baseboards and trim. Nothing deviated from the scheme … except the blue living room blinds, which don’t clash with the new light grey decor.
It has been a long haul to eradicate the monotony, to introduce some interest into the paint scheme, by painting doors and trim white and adding contrasting colour on walls. Upstairs, the carpet has been replaced with oak, downstairs we’ve gone with hard-wearing laminate.
In the office, I had a neutral grey (not quite 18%) mixed to avoid the problem with my last studio: saturated wall colour fooling my eyes during editing.
Besides a hundred-or-so square feet, I’ve lost a skylight, but gained a much cooler environment to work in. At this time of year, my former studio was unbearably hot. As I say, the smaller editing area is more than made up for by the garage, where I’ll move other operations, like frame building and studio shoots.
The last addition to the office will be track lighting, to illuminate framed prints and work surfaces.
Into the light
The first order of business every morning at the old house, in all seasons, was to turn on the lights in the living room.
The abundant light and expansive views from this new “centre of operations” has been the saving grace against moving and renovation madness. Morning coffee comes with open views across the valley, majestic Garry oaks, hummingbirds and woodpeckers. Evenings are spent on the east-facing balcony. There’s still much work to do, but freed from shadows cast by high-rise towers, I look forward to more scenes like the one below.