Dave's New Toy

The new toy is a Meural Leonora Black digital connected canvas.  

     Our condo in Colorado has open space and high ceilings - not many walls for hanging pictures. The photos that were on the walls in our Pensacola house are stacked in piles in my computer area upstairs. The Meural Canvas has been lurking in the back of my mind as an alternative way of displaying images for several months. A few weeks ago I ordered this version. In portrait mode it is 29.5 inches high and 19.2 inches wide. The display is 27" 1080p IPS with anti-glare technology, 1920 x 1080 full HD resolution, 300 cd/m2 brightness. It supports both 2.4GHz and 5GHz Wi-Fi and has 8 GB of storage. 

In an attempt to reduce Betty's justified misgivings (based on our failure to use small digital displays we acquired in the past) about the wisdom of this purchase, the first playlist I created contained family photos.  

The Meural Canvas is advertised as a method of initiating the discovery and expression of art and photography. A large library of artwork and photography can be downloaded and displayed through Meural's partnerships with various art institutions. Thus, the second playlist I created contained images of paintings of some of Betty's favorite artists, including a few that she had seen hanging in the Barnes Museum when we lived in Philadelphia. 

The 1920 x 1080 aspect ratio is not suitable for many photos. I present a few here that seem to work with the canvas. Sandhill Cranes - South Florida

King Penguins - South Georgia

Bald Eagle - Haines, Alaska

Wood Duck - Sterne Park, Littleton, CO

Red-shafted Northern Flicker - University Park, Denver CO

Sandhill Cranes at sunrise - Bosque del Apache NWR, New Mexico

The following was copied directly from one of Meural's web pages.

Lifelike Image Quality – A built-in light sensor and proprietary algorithm adjusts to room lighting to maintain the look and feel of an actual painting. Its LCD matte display gives art and photography a texture-rich, authentic appearance
Gesture Control – A hand-motion gesture control system gives users simple and intuitive control over the frame’s artwork
In-Plane Switching – A dynamic IPS feature keeps the image quality intact regardless of viewing angle
Designer Elegance – The frames, available in black, white, and lightbox varieties, are designed by Richard Clarkson (creator of The Cloud Lamp)
Orientation Versatility – Users can hang the frame in landscape or portrait, reorienting the screen with just a few swipes of their hand

Great Egrets - High Island, TX

Cattle Egret - Jefferson Island, LA

This image of a Cattle Egret did not completely fill the 1920 x 1080 area but adding black borders was not too distracting. Borders were distracting for other images. Obviously, the canvas needs to be rehung in portrait orientation to display many images. A solution for displaying images in both landscape and portrait modes without rehanging a frame comes to mind, but it may not be in my future.

David Sparks

I retired in 2005 after 40 years of research and teaching at the University of Alabama in Birmingham (24 years), the University of Pennsylvania (8 years) and the Baylor College of Medicine (8 years). Photography is my retirement hobby.

Nature photography, especially bird photography, combines a number of things that I really enjoy: bird-watching, being outdoors, photography, travel, messing about with computers, and learning new skills and concepts.  I now spend much of my time engaged in these activities.

David Sibley in the preface to The Sibley Guide to Birds wrote "Birds are beautiful, in spectacular as well as subtle ways; their colors, shapes, actions, and sounds are among the most aesthetically pleasing in nature."  My goal is to acquire images that capture the beauty and uniqueness of selected species as well as images that highlight the engaging behaviors the birds exhibit.