brokenfish Photography: Blog en-us (C) Norm Prince (brokenfish Photography) Thu, 07 Sep 2017 21:47:00 GMT Thu, 07 Sep 2017 21:47:00 GMT brokenfish Photography: Blog 84 120 End of summer.... 1. The Royal Athletic Park (RAP)1. The Royal Athletic Park (RAP)Right in the middle of downtown Victoria (almost) a gem of a field.

All of a sudden, summer has disappeared, being replaced by school buses cruising the neighbourhood, though it still seems those dog days of summer are still here,  with the temperatures up there in the 30s!

I’m not sure how summer got away from me, I had grand plans for trips, visits with friends and many photo shoots. It’s not like I spent the time working on the home reno projects that should have been finished, or practicing all those sheets of musical notes sitting with my guitar in the studio…but I did manage some baseball trips to Victoria.

For me, that’s the sure sign of summer, sitting along the first base line, beer in hand, watching the home team run away with the game. And it’s not MLB I’m talking about, but those small community fields  that are volunteer driven. This summer, I discovered the Victoria HarbourCats, not that they were all that hard to find.

Every August, I tried to head over to Vancouver to catch a game or two at Nat Bailey, watching the Canadians. But really it was the atmosphere, a small crowd, many families and groups of folks from same neighbourhood getting together for a summer night. This year, I decided to head to a weekend of HarbourCat games at the Royal Athletic Park (RAP) in Victoria. I talked two friends into joining me, and we were hooked! We bought tickets for a Saturday night and Sunday afternoon game, in the grandstand right behind home plate, but we didn’t get the seats with the wait staff, maybe next season.

2. The friendly line-up2. The friendly line-upEven the security guards are smiling on the ticket line! RAP is a small field, and waiting outside, before the game starts, you see the neighbourhood drift to the field, families, grandparents and their grandchildren and groups of young folks, all greeted by volunteers keeping the ball games happening. Food trucks are lined up on both of the baselines, so you don’t miss the action while waiting on your order and drink. You are close enough to the field to hear the players, and the crack of the bat rings in your ear.

3. Gotta dump it!3. Gotta dump it!But don't let the smiles fool you, no food or liquids get through these guys! It didn’t take long to catch up on their season, this is the fifth year for the Victoria team, and we picked them up on a run for the West Coast League playoffs, one of two Canadian teams in the running. Though I have to admit I went for a different reason, they also had the only woman, UBC’s Claire Eccle, pitching relief, I kept hoping to see her start! The closest I got was watching her warm up in the bullpen, but she wasn’t called in to shut down the visitors. My friends saw her start, the game I decided to skip!

4. Marilyn's Watching4. Marilyn's WatchingLooking at Marilyn, or checking out the menu? One of many food trucks along the baselines 5. Souvlaki hotshot5. Souvlaki hotshotThese guys have fast hands, and they still look over the crowd and announce what's happening on the field! And it was a crazy end to the season, the HarbourCats clinch first place in their division, but have to wait for two US teams to make up a game postponed by the summer fires. In a twist, the two Canadian teams, Kelowna and Victoria play off for the division title, and the HarbourCats sweep the series, but no Eccles, she’s off, pitching with the Canadian Women’s National Team in their series back East. So for the first time, the ‘Cats are heading to the Division Finals, playing best of three against the Corvallis Knights. One game in Victoria, and all three of us are there, our usual seats, but I notice that my friends are now decked out in ‘Cat hoodies, ball caps and even have the required seat cushions. Discussions about 10 game ticket packs for the 2018 season are being tossed about. And it’s a tight game, and the only rain of the summer starts in the fifth inning. We’re into the bottom of the 9th, trailing 4 - 3. But a walk off double by Po-Hao Huang gave the ‘Cats game one! The crowd had been cheering for him the whole game, he’s affectionally known as “Bernie” by the fans.

6. More cowbell!6. More cowbell!A few Corvallis fans are there, what's that Christopher Walken line about "more cowbell" enough already! 7. The bunt7. The buntWasn't set up to get many shots on the field, next season for that! Here's an attempted bunt in the fifth for a start to a rally. 8. The talk8. The talkThe Knights were good at wasting time in these team meetings on the mound. The ump was always having to walk out to move them on. Just like in "Bull Durham", you wonder what they're talking about? Games two and three move to Corvallis, and we’re stuck with watching a stationary camera behind home plate record the action, broadcast on line to the voice over by a Victoria sportscaster. Reminded me of that scene from “Bull Durham” where the game is broadcast over radio from a closet, taking cues from the phone and using sound effects to simulate the hits!

In the end it was a heck of a run by the HarbourCats, but they fell just short of WCL title. Had two men on with no outs in the ninth inning, but couldn't get them home. And the season is finished, as is the summer. Almost anyway, but the Vancouver Canadians are also playing for the Divisional title in their league, and with the smoke from interior forest fires settling over Spokane, the best of three series was moved to Vancouver, all three games will be played at Nat Bailey, the Canadians took the first game 2 - 1 on Wednesday night, and the teams go again on Thursday, September 7th. Too bad for me, can’t make it over for tonight’s game, Jazz season has opened at the Avalanche, and I’m on the stage crew tonight.

Summer really is over, and hockey season opens in less than a month…..



]]> (brokenfish Photography) baseball brokenfish photography food trucks harbourcats royal athletic park summertime Thu, 07 Sep 2017 21:46:48 GMT
The search is over! Welsh doriesWelsh doriesFinally, after three days on the trail, an hour and 12 boats!

We’re up early, Raymond is not sure if the roads are still closed. As we approach Solva, fire trucks are passing us, heading away from town, a good sign. We arrive at the town centre, and have time for a morning coffee, I like those mornings where I can ease into the day!

Moira has joined us, so I’m chasing the two of them through town. This is the last day of the hike, we end up at White Sands Bay, one of the few surfing beaches on this coast. The trail leaves Solva at the top of the harbour, and as we turn the corner, there they are! Too many boats to count, but just off of the seawall are a dozen or so dories drifting on anchor, and there’s still some of that soft, early morning light lingering about, the sun is still behind the hills.

 I get an hour or so for shooting, the girls are anxious to get going, this is a long hike, close to 18 miles. It’s quiet, with a cool breeze blowing and we hardly see anyone else on the trail. We come across more of those horses, they seem to wander wherever they please, but they’re easily spooked, so it’s hard to get close to them. This part of the trail drops and rises along the coast, so there are many small beaches, and I keep hoping for more boats!

We drop down to a small harbour, and from a distance there seems to be a few tied up, but as we get closed to Caer Bwdy Bay, I notice that they’re all power boats. And no pub in site, we have to settle for ice cream cones in the shade!

Ice Cream but no doryIce Cream but no doryA faint hope that there will be drifting dories, but disappointed again! But ice cream cones in the sun make short work of that!

The afternoon is fading and we still have quite a distance to go, we’re up on a headland, following old stone fences that must be centuries old, and as we round the corner a castle looms on the top of the hill. Kyla decides to sit it out, Moira and I head off the trail to check it out. As we round the corner, all of a sudden the gardens turn formal, and there’s a golf course in the background. It’s a high end resort, and it’s clear that it doesn’t cater to hikers looking for a cold one!

We soon arrive at St. Non’s Bay, and spend some time sitting in the chapel, it’s perched on top of a cliff, overlooking the sea. St Non’s is still used as a retreat, and it’s easy to see why.

We’re off for the last leg, arriving in White Sands in time to sit at the pub while we wait for Raymond to show up. The hike is over, and it was a long walk for the few boat images I managed to find. We’re off to St. Davids for a day and then to Scotland and Northern Ireland, where there’ll be boats galore!

Trail's end Trail's EndWhite Sands beach, no surfers in the water, but a quiet end to the hike!


]]> (brokenfish Photography) Coast Path Pembrokeshire Photography Solva brokenfish dories hiking Tue, 11 Jul 2017 03:00:00 GMT
On fire in Solva! We landed in Dublin and spent the first few days there, not much of an opportunity for boats tied up in some idyllic Irish harbour. The River Liffey didn’t offer much either, other than a few sunken hulls stuck in the mud.

So, we’re off on the second leg of this journey, taking the ferry to Milford Haven, in Pembrokeshire, Wales we ended up at our first B&B in Marloes, at the beginning of our hike up the coast to St. Davids, along the Pembrokeshire Coast Path. I’m looking forward to this leg, the trail snakes along the coast for 50 miles, there’s bound to be too many images to shoot!

It worked like this, we get up, pack our lunches, load up the day packs and Raymond, our fixer, drops us off at the trail head. We usually hiked 12 - 16 miles a day, and at the end of the trail, there’s Raymond waiting to take us back to a new B&B, he’s already moved our luggage. So it’s a gentle walk, and Raymond knows all the spots to visit, including a pub in each stop! I don’t think I could keep up with his schedule, he’s a dairy farmer, drives the local school bus and then the shuttle for the hikers. And he seems to know everyone, which comes in handy.

Day three of the trip, and it’s just Kyla and me heading out early in the morning, the others are enjoying sleeping in and driving around with Raymond. Our day starts with a red fox dashing across the trail, right in front of us, and the day gets better! Over the three days, I’ve discovered that either my daughters have learned to walk faster since those Cape Scott hikes, or I’m walking slower! But I always have the camera at ready, and can use that as an excuse to linger behind them. Tucked into the trail are many small cottages, and some of the designs are very interesting, but I’m looking for those dories. Halfway to Solva, we find a pub and stop for a beer. I’m always surprised that it’s difficult to find a local brew, not sure why anyone would drink a Budweiser! Especially along a trail in Wales.

The second half of the trail proves interesting, we happen upon a small herd of wild horses that seem to wander along the trail, and rounding a corner, we head down into a small harbour, and get caught in a rainstorm! Taking shelter on the porch of the local church, we tried the door and noticed the sign at the bottom of the stairs. A good place for the local vicar, out with a camera! Out with My CameraOut with My Camera

As we near Solva, we start to notice smoke in the air, and the smell of woodsmoke starts to overcome the sea air. Hikers going by us, warn that the trail may be closed, there’s a fire making its way into town. As we wind down the hill, I notice the harbour before I notice all the fire equipment. The fire is working its way towards town, the trail cuts across the head of the harbour, and we manage to get into the town centre. We have two hours before Raymond is supposed to pick us up, so we’re off to one of the pubs that line the street. We find out that the roads into Solva are all closed and that the pub is doing the same, the fire is slowly making its way into town. Wondering what to do next, I head off to shoot some fire fighting photos and see if there’s any information from the fire brigade. Through the smoke on the road, Moira walks into the square. The three of them were riding with Raymond, and he got them on a bus into town. He knows a way around the road blocks, so we get instructions to be at the bridge at 5:00 pm, if we want a ride back to the B&B.

I have an hour or so, and start wandering down to the harbour, but everything is blocked off, so it’s no dories tonight!! We meet up with Raymond, take a few backroads up the hills and we’re back at the B&B for the night.

Solva Harbour from trailSolva Harbour from trailDay two, fire has burned out and I've managed a few photos of those dories tied up along the seawall!

]]> (brokenfish Photography) Coast Path Pembrokeshire Photography Solva boat brokenfish dory Sat, 08 Jul 2017 04:43:20 GMT
If I had a boat...... In early March, I saw Lyle Lovett play in Nanaimo, and he closed with one of my favourite songs: If I Had a Boat.

And that triggered a series of topics for this Blog, and I thought that I’d be pushing them out on a weekly basis. But writing is hard work! I’ve been told to break the posts down into short segments, and not worry too much about the structure. That will come….. or so I’m told!

I’m relatively new to digital editing, and much of my library of images hasn’t been edited or printed, so when I get off on these tangents, I discover some gems buried in the folders. Lovett’s If I Had a Boat started me thinking about photographs taken while on a boat, or looking for boats.

In 2007, I drove across Canada with my youngest daughter. She was off to school in Halifax, where her older sister was living, also in school. That was the last film shoot using my F3, and I had a small Canon point and shoot that I used to post photos of the trip along the way. While in Halifax, I dropped off my film to be processed and noticed that Nikon’s D60 was on sale. I should have known that was because the D90 was being released! So, for the next while, I’d use the D60 and back up the shoot with a roll of film, and I’d use iPhoto to catalogue the digital images, occasionally a quick edit before sending it off via email. That was the extent of my digital editing, so there are many unfinished projects in the can!

In 2011, we took a trip to Ireland, Wales and The Netherlands. Boats were involved both for travel, but more so for subjects. My daughter Kyla had moved back to Ireland and was constantly posting small dories or skiffs anchored in some quaint Irish harbour, or there were images of beached fishing boats looking like whale skeletons bleaching on isolated beaches. That became a project for me, to capture similar images while we were travelling.

How hard could it be, all of the places were on the water, two were islands, all connected by boats.

But first I have to link the Lovett’s song to photography, and the third verse does just that, I wouldn’t scare ‘em, but I’d sure quietly capture those images!

And if I were like lightning
 wouldn't need no sneakers
I'd come and go wherever I would please
And I'd scare 'em by the shade tree
And I'd scare 'em by the light pole
But I would not scare my pony on my boat out on the sea

So that’s it for this Post, and it's not a dory, but just like home, the journey starts with a ferry ride!

Irish FerryIrish FerryNot a dory, but just like BC, the trip starts with a ferry ride!

]]> (brokenfish Photography) Ferry Ireland Photography Wales boat brokenfish dory Wed, 21 Jun 2017 05:30:00 GMT
Why brokenfish Photography It’s been a long search for a name, I didn’t want to use Norm Prince Photography, and started looking for plays on both light and perhaps some camera parts. Needless to say, with this democratization of photography and using web searches, it soon became evident that there are hundreds of Facebook pages or Word Press sites, using all sorts of combinations of the most common photographic terminology.

So the quest was expanded, recruiting friends and family to help with the search, now including Latin, French and Italian words, and even with that expanded search, nothing seemed to pique my interest. But it soon became evident that the world is populated with Wedding Photographers, many of them seemingly to be in New Jersey or Indiana!

The next step was to look at what I enjoy photographing: graffiti, abandoned industrial sites, abandoned buildings, old vehicles, rusted machinery, landscapes and more recently, nature photography. While a list was generated, nothing really stood out as a choice for a name. So, I ended up with a series of names I decided to try out for a reaction. Missing Film, because I do, and it’s missing from my camera, replaced by 0s and 1s. But it was pointed out quickly, that many folks didn’t miss film, and perhaps never used to shoot with it! Then I tried Last Quarter Photography, taken from Sixty: A Diary of my 61st year by Ian Brown, but not many got the connection. Many asked what I was doing with that last 25 cents.

Then, as I was printing images from my Great Bear Rainforest trip, I came across a few shots of salmon skeletons that had collected in the river estuaries. I tried a few versions, and finally settled on a shot of a whole skeleton, but I noticed that there were many partial or broken skeletons laying below the surface of the water. Having to come up with a title for the print I was displaying, I came up with Broken Fish.

The next step in this name search began with the construction of that elusive website to showcase my photography. I soon learned that the “free” Word Press templates are free for a reason, and it didn’t take long to run into problems. As I set up pages, I needed some placeholders for images, and that fish skeleton was one of the six or seven that I was using, but for some reason, I kept going back to the black and white print of the skeleton. I parked the website for a while, set up this Zenfolio account and brokenfish Photography it is!

So here’s the reach, even growing up in land-locked Ohio, fishing was an important part of growing up, I still remember eating my first fried catfish at a neighbour’s barbeque.  In Europe, we lived on or close to the ocean, and spent much of our time around the water. I still remember eating my first raw herring on the pier in Scheveningen, though that was a Grade 6 dare! Moving back to BC in my 20s, I ended up living in Kits, and close to the beach, spending lots of time around the harbour in Steveston, buying fish off of the boats.

I ended up taking a teaching job in Holberg, a logging camp on the northern end of Vancouver Island, again on the water and close to Winter Harbour, Coal Harbour and Quatsino, all small North Island fishing communities. The commercial fishery was an integral part of the local economy, and even more important culturally to the local First Nation communities. The size of the salmon run would determine the economic strength of the communities for the following year. For the next 20 odd years, poor government policies, corporate greed,  the demise of local canneries, forced sell-offs for fishers and the weakening of the Union all contributed to the demise of the economy of coastal communities in Canada.

With government endorsement, fish farming arrived on the BC coast in the mid-80s, and a new door for corporate greed was opened. The conflict between the wild and farmed fisheries grew, with a foreign species introduced to West Coast waters. The promised benefits of well-paying jobs never materialized, and many Coastal First Nations have now started to demand the closure of many of the fish farms. After 20 years, the scientific data is showing that there is an adverse effect on the wild salmon runs.

There’s always the slow move for change, and many consumers are starting to question the origin of the fish they’re putting on their dinner plates. Books like The Fish Market by Lee van der Voo outline the conflict over where and how fish are caught, and the price we pay for those fish.

Locally, many fishers are slowly building back a sustainable market, Estevan Tuna Company ( and Skipper Otto ( are two of many examples of a sustainable fishery on the BC Coast. Many First Nations communities are taking charge of the local fisheries, with examples from both Haida Gwaii and the Great Bear Rainforest, utilizing young community members for research and the Guardian Watchmen programmes in their territories to regulate tourism and fishing.

After 32 years on the North Island, we’ve moved to Royston and just a short walk to the beach on Baynes Sound, a small part of the Salish Sea, located between Denman Island and Vancouver Island. Like so many other areas, climate change has started to manifest itself with acidification of the waters, affecting the local shellfish industry. Added to that mix is pollution from septic fields, old industrial sites and waste from the shellfish industry. And not too far away there’s the threat of Justin’s pipeline and Christy’s LNG dreams, all having an effect on the local environment and fishery.

That was a long reach, but there it is. Perhaps with some of my photographs and projects, I can affect the changes that need to happen sooner rather later.

So, for now, it’s brokenfish Photography.




]]> (brokenfish Photography) Great Bear Rainforest LNG Royston brokenfish pipeline salmon Mon, 27 Mar 2017 02:31:02 GMT