PALM BEACH FLORIDA – We drove down to Palm Beach for dinner with some old friends. Our hostess, who is pictured below in front of a cabinet of trophies (one of several), as a serious competitive ballroom dancer. Image taken with my Leica Monochro and 50mm Noctilux lens.
On this day one year ago: Meh . . . .
Pebbles, leaves and trees
GASPARILLA ISLAND, FLORIDA – We visited this island paradise, Nantucket with palm trees, a year ago and kind of liked it. So we’re back. But this time the weather was uncooperative. Mostly cold and dreary with fleeting sunlight. But we’re with good friends so it’s a terrific weekend in any event. Here’s a picture of Tom Barry at dinner, taken with my Leica Monochrom and 50mm f.95 Noctilux lens. I’ve gained a lot more confidence in this lens since I’ve gotten glasses that correct for my astigmatism.
On this day last year: Sadie Hawkins Day.
NEW YORK NEW YORK = Remember my periodic poker game? It was tonight. Here are some images of friends at the game taken with my Leica Monochrom and f.95 Leica Noctilux.
On this day one year ago: Tanner’s Farm.
NEW YORK NEW YORK – We had dinner with some friends at Pizza Fresca, a local pizza joint in the ’20s with a truly remarkable wine list. Snapshot with my Leica Monochrom and 50mm f.95 Noctilux lens.
On this day last year: Beach club.
Gasparilla Inn Beach Club
NEW YORK NEW YORK – We had a party this evening in honor of a visiting German friend. I shot it with my Leica Monochrom and a 1837 Carl Zeiss Jena 8.5cm Sonnar lens. The Sonnar was designed for a pre-war Contax rangefinder camera, not for a Leica, so it took two adapters (one of them is quite complex) to fit it on a modern camera. It’s the classic small camera portrait lens of its era and has lovely rendering, but focus is flakey so I adjusted it so that focus was accurate at its close focus distance and focused by moving my body. I bought it in anticipation of the Leica M, which permits through-the-lens focusing without relying on the rangefinder, which doesn’t couple accurately with this lens. Here are some samples:
On this day last year: Superbowl.
MUSTIQUE ST. VINCENT AND THE GRENADINES – We’re packing up today to return to the freezing Northeastern US. A snapshot of John Novogrod taken with my Leica Monochrom and a 21mm Super Elmar lens.
On this day last year: the Majestic.
MUSTIQUE ST. VINCENT AND THE GRENADINES – Our friend Basil Charles (owner of Basil’s Bar) had a picnic on the beach for us. Here’s Basil taken with my Leica S medium format camera.
Basil Charles OBE
On this day last year: R T Facts, a place near us in Connecticut that specializes in Architectural artifacts.
MUSTIQUE ST. VINCENT AND THE GRENADINES – There are exactly four places to get food or drink on this island. One of them is Firefly where we went today for a cocktail at sunset. Here are some images taken with my Leica Monochrom and a 50mm Summilux lens.
On this day last year: Warren in good light.
More Warren in good light
MUSTIQUE ST. VINCENT AND THE GRENADINES – We’re here in the Grenadines for a week of r&r ahead of a tough schedule of client meetings in February. I’m shooting mostly with my Leica S, today snapshots of friends.
On this day last year: Birds.
VENICE CALIFORNIA – We had a shopping and eating day today on Abbot Kinney Boulevard, which is said to be one of the best shopping streets in the world. By whom I don’t know. Perhaps someone who has never been to Paris or Milan. But it really is kind of funky and fun. Images taken with my Leica Monochrom and 50mm Summilux lens.
Abbot Kinney Boulevard
This with my iPhone and then “percolated”
Brewed in Percolator
On this day last year: Risotto alla Milanese. Home cooking. Have I mentioned that I’m a foodie?
Risotto alla Milanese
SANTA MONICA CALIFORNIA – We started the day in Manhattan and ended it in Santa Monica. Maria is here on business and I’m tagging along to explore Santa Monica and Naples and to drive up to Camera West in Rancho Mirage to trade my extensive Phase One and Alpa technical camera gear for a Leica S medium format camera. The technical camera actually brings out the worst in me – my shooting gets cramped and stilted (to my eye) once I put the camera on a tripod. More on this in future posts. For today I shot this fellow artist on the Santa Monica pier (a refuge for harmless sleaze) with my Leica Monochrome and a 35mm Leica Summilux wide angle lens.
Here’s a no-no. A pet. Basil, our splendid Norwich Terrier. I’ve sworn never to post pictures of pets or cute kids, so this is bad behavior on my part. Taken with my iPhone and processed a bit.
On this day last year: a travel day at Midway Airport.
WARREN CONNECTICUT – New Years day. Slightly hung over and out of sorts. I took exactly one picture today, a picture of Maria walking the dog. On reviewing it I was horrified to find out that it looked like a terrible ’50s snapshot – harsh and over exposed in the bright sun. This with my Leica MM and 35mm Summilux lens, demonstrating that good equipment doesn’t make good pictures. I downsized it, moved to my iPhone and processed with Plastic Bullet, which adds a bunch of grunge. It looks pretty much like a ’50s snapshot badly processed.
On this day last year: Taos mountain.
MUSTIQUE – Our last day in the Grenadines. I’ve gotten a strong positive reaction to the photo of Maria’s bathing suit below (taken with my Leica Monochrom and 50mm Noctilux lens), probably because that it carries a suggestion that Maria has shed it and is nearby sunning. Actually she’s off packing and the swimsuit is just on the post drying off. Context is all. Then a selfie of me in a mirror that I quite liked.
On this day one year ago: Thanksgiving.
MUSTIQUE – Here we are still, swimming, eating and drinking rum punches. At lunch at the Cotton House beach bar and a still life from our house. Both taken with my Leica Monochrom and 50mm Noctilux lens.
On this day one year ago: Mirror.
Mirror, mirror on the wall
Bedtween MUSTIQUE and BEQUIA – We chartered a powerboat for the day to make the trip to Bequia and to do some snorkeling. My pictures from Bequia are uninspiring so I’m posting some portraits from the boat ride. I did come away from Bequia with on treasure, though: a tee shirt from the Whaleboner Bar.
Taken with my Leica Monochrom and 35mm Summilux lens.
On this day last year: Quartoze-bis.
NEW YORK NEW YORK – We had dinner at home amid preparations to hunker down for Sandy. I’m test driving an iPad app called Softbox Pro – it turns your iPad into a small softbox light source. It’s not much light so you need to tamp down ambient light and hold it close to the subject. Here I’ve asked the subject to hold it but the natural inclination is to hold it as if reading it, which results in Bride of Frankenstein lighting. Not very flattering.
On this day last year: Subway