The Ducati Monster 696 I ride is part of my identity construct; despite the weather, the danger and the inconvenience, I ride because the Zen state of mindfulness is never more present than when my life is on the line. Perhaps I am present when sharing time with a companion or family, but I do so because I want to share an experience with that other person. On the motorcycle I only want to experience what the universe places on the road before me. I feel alive on my morning ride to work, which is ironically when most people in Toronto feel most zombie-like.
For the ride this morning I decided to test the GoPro Hero 3 by mounting it on my gas tank with a simple adhesive mount. I tethered it with aircraft cable for safety, and then would hit record before leaving or entering a stopped intersection. The view, given that it is simply my ride to work, feels wide, open and inviting. One can imagine what the actual road, a road to bigger adventures, could lead if one just had the desire to pull out of Dodge instead of punching into the clock. For my own part…I no longer feel like the allure of the road beckons me: I have what I want at home for the first time in my forty years of life.
The goal today was to see how the camera captured video when mounted to a moving object. The appeal of the GoPro is clearly the immersive quality that the rider/athlete/artist gets as feedback. The point of view is clearly first person, and it is unique. The secondary goal was to see what quality of screen shot I could grab as a film still. Personally, I prefer the screen shot quality to the snap shot quality that I captured while walking the neighbourhood yesterday. I better understand that the GoPro’s strength is to offer superwide, immersive viewpoints in lieu of replacing a standard camera. I am looking forward to mounting it to the canoe or a paddle this weekend to see exactly what types of weird angles I can capture that can serve as memories of the events of this summer.
The back-up camera that I am going to take for the Haliburton canoe trip will be the Yashica 4×4 camera that was given to me a few weeks back. I procured two rolls of Rollei Nightbird ISO 800 film that promise to deliver vibrant red and white negatives in lieu of black and white or colour. While I am uncertain what I can accomplish with such a media, I am confident that the experiment will be worth the $15.46 a roll paid to obtain 127 film, which was until recently almost impossible to get one’s little pudgies on. The theme for the roll will be to capture a magical land and time that is seldom experienced by the average bear. Life never needs be anything but extraordinary, after all is said and done.