Heat Wave

Being stuck at home several months into a pandemic and multiple weeks into summer heat wave, I’m finding photography to be my only real outlet for achieving some sort of emotional equilibrium. It’s too hot now to exercise outdoors,¬†too hot to work on the house, too hot to make candles and have them cure correctly. Work has been slow but steady with unique challenges and constant adjustments. I’m connecting with some of my social group and only sporadically. I feel like the one thing I have to fall back on right now is my love for experimenting with cameras.

Heat Wave | Sophster-Toaster

On a sweltering midsummer evening, after waiting all day for the sun to crawl across the sky and filter through the climbing hydrangea just the way I wanted to play with, I dressed up in colours that matched the flowers, poured an equally paired cocktail and started taking pictures. I had fun moving around in the sinking light, listening to neighbours catch up with good friends and occasionally spilling my sticky drink down my arm because I wasn’t paying close enough attention to it. I don’t normally present my pictures like this, but it felt right. Here they are in the order that I took them.

Heat Wave | Sophster-Toaster Heat Wave | Sophster-Toaster Heat Wave | Sophster-Toaster Heat Wave | Sophster-Toaster Heat Wave | Sophster-Toaster Heat Wave | Sophster-Toaster Heat Wave | Sophster-Toaster

Glasses Warby Parker

All photos by me.

Garden Party

Garden Party | Sophster-Toaster

We moved into our starter house at the end of summer 2016. The backyard was a mess so we spent the rest of the year trying to tame and reclaimed it.

We had the garden area cleared and restored in time to put some vegetables in last summer but they didn’t grow very well. The soil was full of pests, tree roots, literal garbage and plastic that the previous owners had buried for some unfathomable reason, and broken glass and pottery. The yard was also shaded by a large walnut tree at the back of our yard and an overgrown birch on the side, breaching the border between our yard and the neighbour’s. We tilled the soil, trying our best to clean it up as we went, and worked in some manure that we got from my father-in-law’s organic farm. The plants that were able to take root and then survive the bugs did well enough to give us a few fresh meals, but certainly didn’t produce enough to give us winter reserves.

Early the next spring, our neighbour, also a new, first-time home owner, had the overgrown birch tree taken down. We dug up many of the tree roots that were sending up suckers and causing trouble, found and removed the rest of the garbage (thanks Pepper), and, over the course of the previous year, had driven away most of the pests using organic methods.

Knowing not to expect too much from our garden, this year we planted a few cheap and easy things with a let’s see what happens attitude. We didn’t get many peas, but the radishes did alright. Then the summer sun started rising over the houses and shining into our north facing yard, through the gaps where the tree used to be, for most of the day and our garden took off! The horseradish, potatoes, tomatoes, beans, zucchini, and various herbs soon took over and started crowding out the weeds. Not even Pepper, the biggest garden pest of all, can trample the strong, bumper crop of plants we’ve been able to grow this year.

Garden Party | Sophster-Toaster Garden Party | Sophster-Toaster Garden Party | Sophster-Toaster Garden Party | Sophster-Toaster Garden Party | Sophster-Toaster Garden Party | Sophster-Toaster Garden Party | Sophster-Toaster Garden Party | Sophster-Toaster Garden Party | Sophster-Toaster Garden Party | Sophster-Toaster Garden Party | Sophster-Toaster

Dress ModCloth
Hat Forever 21
Shoes ModCloth
Necklace Emery & Opal

All photos be me and Matt Harrison.