Rosemary Hasner – Ontario Rural Ruins in Art

These images are based on photographs of Ontario rural locations, some abandoned but some just old and interesting.  Mixed media photography. I like the images with the postal marks on them. A personal thing from all the years I wrote penpal letters and still really like vintage postcards. But, my favourite of all of these is the one with the plain wooden house and all the greenery in the foreground.  I like the look of it, much less spooky than the other images. I think it has a touch of fantasy and is more interesting because it’s less forbidding and doom and gloom.

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Via – Rosemary Hasner at Black Dog Creative Arts.

Interview with Ontario Abandoned Places

I haven’t been active on the site so it was very nice to be included in the interviews. Following is my own interview. Follow the link to read the other interviews with Ontario women urban (and rural) explorers.

Thrill of the XXploration – ThatGRRL

Hello. Can you tell us a little bit about yourself?

I began looking at abandoned houses as a kid. My Mom, my Grandmother’s sister and I explored an old house together more than 30 years ago. I still have the key I found in the front door. These days I live in Barrie but I was actually from Toronto originally. Mainly I see derelict farmhouses around Ontario. I like any old building (especially old banks and cemeteries) with old stone or iron architecture.

I watch for ghost signs and would like to find a location for rooftopping but there aren’t so many tall buildings in rural areas. I like to learn more about the architecture itself and the history of buildings but I only know a little so far.

My second camera was a Panasonic. I still think it captured colours better than my other cameras. The camera I use now is a FujiFilm Fine Pix SL300. I picked it because it had the most zoom I could get at the time. I always look at the zoom first because I like to narrow in on features of the building without having to be close. Also, zoom lets me get in to see places up close when I can’t physically get close. Continue reading Interview with Ontario Abandoned Places

Where the Wild Things Are: Magick versus Magic

Originally posted to ‘BackWash: Where the Wild Things Are’ newsletter, September, 11, 2003.

Magic versus magick. Where do you stand on the word?

Magick isn’t in the dictionary, so far. But I think it’s a good addition to the language. It shows a difference in magic as done by a magician versus magick as done by a Witch, Wiccan or Pagan type person. We aren’t doing card tricks to amuse kids at a birthday party. Our magick is not entertainment. As much as I appreciate and enjoy magic, I don’t want to see magick called magic.

Confused? Then let’s add to your confusion. What is a Witch compared to a Wiccan or a Traditional Witch?

In my opinion (notice the qualifier) a Wiccan is someone who follows the ideals set out by Gardener and friends in the last century. Traditional Witches are those who come from a family of Witches, thus they inherited the traditions. Meanwhile Witches are those who base their witchery on herbalists, wise women and men from ages ago and whatever else they can discover from the long ago past.

Does that help or do you want even more confusion to add to your confusion? Let’s just add the words eclectic and solitary to the mix. Can you be a solitary eclectic? Of course. Solitary just means you choose to be alone, not a member of a coven or some such group. Can you be solitary and a coven member? No, that kind of defeats the whole solitary thing. Anyone can be eclectic. There are so many ideals, traditions and so much history that it’s really hard to find someone who agrees with another person about everything. So, most of us could call ourselves eclectic. Does that mean you should? No, it’s too confusing. Find something to describe your style of Wicca or Witchery and stick with it. You don’t have to be a carbon copy of everyone else but you can make everything simpler to understand. Besides, in the end we are all part of the group of Pagans.


Go find some answers. Don’t be shy.

Grrl Explorers on Flickr

Female Urban Explorers

Urban Explorers tend to be men…which is no bad thing for us girl explorers 😉 but being such a rare breed, it’s always nice to meet other girls interested in UE. This group is a place for UE girls to get together to talk about our explores and experiences and a place to share our images. Let’s celebrate the fact that we are female Urban Explorers….and proud of it!

FUSE – Female Urban and Street Exploration

…interesting artifacts found on the street that have been abandoned or unused for quite sometime, parts of a building that has lots of character, or urban exploration in general (the inside of an abandoned building, house, etc).

Why females only? The art of UrbEx is male dominated. I wanted it to be known that women are out there UrbEx’ing too.

Do it for the grrls!

Film Making Women Arrive Tomorrow

The film making women arrive tomorrow and I’m kind of shy, nervous and excited. Elizabeth noticed my rural ruins photos on Flickr and emailed me about going out with her and a location manager to see some of the houses. She wants to use a crumbling old farm house in a film.

Tonight she sent four photos which I have taken as sites she has picked out to see more of.

I wish there was a perfect pill or at least a skinny pill I could take tonight. They are both from Toronto, likely skinny and well dressed types. I’m the blobby potato who made apple pie with her Mother yesterday. Sometimes I just get tired of looking like me. Though I do like my hair, even though I’ve come to the stage of having to colour away the greys.

Anyway, tomorrow I will meet Elizabeth and we will go out touring around. I must remember to charge up the battery on my camera. It should be fine but will not hurt to make sure it is fully charged rather than wish I had done it when it starts to get low tomorrow.

So, no, I won’t be a star but maybe one of the houses I have visited will be in a great Canadian film. Coming soon to a theatre near you…

Time for New Things

I was downtown again today. Just a trip out for coffee and a stroll around. No photos this time. It’s funny how you can get intimidated and not take photos at times. I saw a few things and I thought about how I would take the picture but there were several people around and I let the chance pass by. I don’t know why I cared that anyone was there. After all, what would anyone do, stop me from taking a picture. Not like it’s illegal or immoral. I’m going to try to work on that.

Yesterday I read a good article in another blog about writers who have blogs. She said most of us just write blogs about writing. I guess that is what we think we know and have thougths about most often. I think anything to do with blog publishing and SEO (search engine optimization for sites) comes a close second if not first even. But it is true that writers tend to make their blogs pretty predictable, topical blogs. I’m not counting this as a topical blog it doesn’t have any real focus.

She said we should write about something else, a personal interest, hobby or cause. I think that is really a good plan. For myself especially as I really do like having a project on the go and I really do need to have a plan and keep myself stuck to it. So, I am coming up with ideas. I do have plenty to choose from, lots of things I am interested in. Too many and some which turn out to be short term or abandoned along the way. I am thinking most about a blog with photos of old things in Toronto. I really do like taking the photos of old buildings and there isn’t any shortage of places and bits of places to choose from. I could have a backlog of photos on hand and just post one a day for a very long time. So that does seem like the idea with the most potential.

Makes me think about Skye and her blog for the town she is in. I check on her now and then. I would be lucky cause Toronto is massively big and a centre for a lot of events and traffic of people in general. I think she is finding that a problem for her smaller area.

Other topics I could write about are Pagan or women’s issues/ culture/ something or other. I think the Pagan would be good for drawing traffic BUT I don’t think I really have enough I want to say to make that a weekly column let alone a daily thing. Unless I added a wider focus for it, including some history and culture which would be borderline on focus for the Wicca/ Pagan topic. Still, it is something I am not passing off on. The women’s thing I am passing on. I really don’t want to blab on and on about online dating, periods, being a grrl or whatever else that direction would take me. I don’t see that being a direction I want to go in. Besides, I see a ton of sites like that which are submitted to Dmoz and most of them are pretty trashy with spam and light/ lame on content.

I am still going to put thought into the Pagan thing. Even though I can’t see it as a weekly column I wonder if it wouldn’t be a good idea. It’s important to have someone out there talking about Paganism from a real prespective, not all about quick fixes with spells and worshipping gods. I don’t believe in any gods and I am anti-spellcraft. Both seem really phony to me. You can’t say you are for life and free choice and such and then try to force things to your will with ‘spells’ and blame it all on ‘gods or goddesses’. Of course it is more complicated than that. I might try it and see how it goes. If I get into it or get wound out and have nothing left to say after a month.

I think I will keep the writing blog going. I renamed it Word Grrls this past week. So far it just has all my old articles with another dozen or so still in drafts to be stuck out there. I’ve been updating it each Monday. I’m not doing anything else cause I don’t feel right to really grow it till I’m out of old content. For now it is fine. As with the Pagan plan, it gives me time to decide if I want to keep it going as a weekly thing. To see what committment I really have to it all.

I do think the Something Old in Toronto idea is good, good for me as well as something I could turn into a popular site. People do seem to enjoy the photos I have done of old buildings. Although most are still the farmhouses from outside of Toronto. Anyway, it seems like a good plan.