Bias against my home

I’ll be the first to admit that I often felt that my hometown, Toronto, has nothing special. I often make fun of how boring my city is. Flat landscape. Lack of history. I often felt that Toronto is no comparison to Europe or Asia in its richness for its history, and consequently, its architectures and the city laid out are very 1970ish.

That feeling was more pronounced after my trip to the Mediterranean Sea. Heading back to Toronto was depressing. For a period of 14 days spent in Europe and Egypt, I shot over 2000 photos (some were approved by Dreamstime). In Toronto, how long would it take me to take 2000 photos? Probably months. (Of course, quantity doesn’t always guarantee quality. One amazing shot will beat 2000 mediocre shots any day.)

To forbid myself from getting stuck in a rut, I forced myself to go out to take some photos of Toronto. Very tough task, I thought. During labour day (September 1, 2008) in Toronto, I decided to walk around the city. I decided to see Toronto through the eyes of a tourist. Though it lacks the history, Toronto does have CN Tower that bares the title of the tallest freestanding structure for many years until recently. As I was walking away from the CN Tower, I couldn’t help but turned back to take pictures of this lanky skyscraper. It does make for a very imposing structure; and hence, it gives Toronto personalities.

I guess the lesson here is that what is the norm for me does not make it a norm for others. What I find boring, others may find intriguing. With a mind set of a tourist, I was able to look pass the bias that I formulated within myself for many years and take some pretty good photos of Toronto. Now I will take this approach wherever I go.

Photo credits: Joe Ng.

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September 06, 2008


Lorraine, great suggestion. Thanks.

September 06, 2008


Joe, something else that you have access to in Toronto is newsworthy editorial content. A lot of highly publicised events take place in Toronto, just bring your camera. Free concerts. Political rallies in Nathan Philips Square. The film festival is on right now. Jump on the subway and go looking for celebrities!

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