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September 01, 2010

Guest blog: Ottawa – more than just a pretty picture

Today's guest blog comes from Rachelle Todd. Rachelle's a public servant, actor, does stand-up comedy, and also entertainment event planning. She enjoys taking pictures whenever and wherever the inspiration hits, and lives in Centretown.
Peace Tower Clock of the Parliament Buildings

It may be cliché to say that Ottawa is picturesque, but it is also an understatement.

I moved to Ottawa in the fall of 2007 from Alberta and I am still fascinated by what I see here.

I am not a photographer. I never took a photography class. I am however addicted to snapping pictures with my BlackBerry 8900. The BlackBerry I have to say takes some pretty darn good pictures.

Maybe it is hereditary. (As a child I would watch in awe as my Dad would step into his dark room to transform paper and solution into amazing images and then take these images and create paintings and sculptures.) They say that life imitates art – and I believe Ottawa does just that. That is why I have hundreds of photographs occupying space on my computer’s hard drive.

I have captured images of the Queen, the fireworks on Parliament Hill on Canada Day, and countless old buildings to name a few. Living in Centertown, I am lucky that there are plenty of opportunities to see much of the city’s history. I can walk around the neighbourhood and capture old Victorian houses, the Rideau Canal, and the Museum of Nature, or I can cycle down the canal and be greeted with picturesque Dow’s Lake, Mooney’s bay or the Hartwells Locks.

I recall once taking a tour of the Peace Tower on Parliament Hill. I started snapping the usual shots and then all of a sudden, my fingers and body were moving in strange positions, as new frames came into play. This was the beginning of my love affair between my BlackBerry camera and Ottawa.

Eventually, I found myself looking at buildings, rivers, and ducks with the fascination of a new born bay seeing the sky for the first time. I began to see landscapes and objects and frame them in my mind like a painting. Maybe it was the way a tree tickled the top of the roof, or how the water on the canal rippled as a boat crossed, or the site of a few ducklings basking in the sunny rocks of the Hog’s Back Falls. Whatever it was - I had to snap it.

Inside the Parliament Buildings

View of Gatineau from Parliament Hill in Winter/Spring

Taking pictures of Ottawa’s many historical sites is like being in a kid in a candy store. Not just because there are so many fascinating buildings, but because there are so many different pictures one can get from a single building. I believe that behind every building’s brick there is a story.

Many a visitor and resident have captured the beauty of Ottawa on film, and many more will continue to do so because there is no end to Ottawa’s many marvels.
Related: Ottawa Photography Guide

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