PARIS – A day of tourism. All shot with my Leica Monochrom and 50mm Summichron Asph. lens. I’ve edited post to add three more images to an already overburdened day, three images taken with my iPhone as Bob and I sampled a very, very good burger at Paris New York, an excellent burger joint (really) in Strasbourg-St Denis (a changing neighborhood in Paris that’s still mid-cycle).
Street sign I
Street sign II
The Tiepolo didn’t quite fit
View from on high
Paris New York
Paris New York
Paris New York
On this day last year: Test. Testing focus on my then “new” Leica M4 (film!):
NEW YORK NEW YORK – You read a lot about the weather on this blog. Woody’s weather channel. what a bore. But the weather really affects me. At the core I’m an landscape photographer; in New York we happen to have an urban landscape; the weather dramatically affects how it looks. Today we had a serious snow storm. The snow turned to slush by the time it reached the ground and photographed as a medium gray sludge. Not to my liking so I pointed my camera out the windows of our apartment to give you a gallery of water tanks, obscured by the snow, on surrounding buildings. All taken with my Leica Monochrom and a135mm APO-Telyt lens.
Snow on water tanks
Early Winter Storm
On this dat=y one year ago: Dandy. Taken with my long-g0ne Ricoh GRD.
NEW YORK NEW YORK – I’ve been thinking about what it is to photograph landscape (whether urban or otherwise). Let me describe the experience. There comes a moment when you physically experience some remarkable aspect of the light. For me the world seems to grow quiet and I work without thinking, intuitively. Time seems suspended. I reach this state of mind on those rare occasions when the light is very special and combines with the scenery in front of me to create a heightened sense of reality. It’s good to have a camera in hand when this happens. I’m not wildly successful seeking these moments out with a tripod.
there was one of those moments this morning in the space between the Seagrams Building and the Racquet and Tennis Club.
Racquet and Tennis Club
Rafael Barrios sculpture “Acrobatic”.
More of the same:
Seagrams Building lobby:
On this day last year: Forsythia in the shape of Italy.
GASPARILLA ISLAND FLORIDA – The beach club at the Gasparilla Inn provided a demonstration today by a professional sand castle builder. That’s right. A guy who makes a living on the beach making castles (or whatever) out of sand. Makes the rest of us feel like we’re kind of doing it the hard way. Given that it’s Presidents Day weekend (for those of you outside the US we used to celebrate Washington’s and Lincoln’s birthdays separately, which happen around now, whenever they fell; more recently Presidents Day is celebrated for both of them on a Monday in February, making a three day weekend), a Presidential theme is appropriate.
Our sand castle architect chose an image of a Purple Heart because it incorporates a silhouette of Washington. The Purple Heart is a democratic decoration: it’s given to all who are wounded or killed in action. I received one during my Marine Corps service in Vietnam. It is the only decoration received by most Marines, soldiers and sailors who are killed in action. At the start of the Gulf War I started wearing a Purple Heart lapel pin (which I continue to wear today). I can’t articulate why. It’s with some difficulty that I write these sentences. Anyway, here is the Purple Heart rendered in sand, captured with my Sony Nex-7 and a 24mm Leica Summilux lens.
On this day two years ago: Vietnam Memorial. I’ve looked back two years here (rather than my usual one) because on February 18, 2010 I photographed my shadow on the Vietnam Memorial (shooting infrared) in DC. The juxtaposition is a coincidence and I understand that it borders on the maudlin.
Vietnam Veterans Memorial
NEW YOK NEW YORK – This is rehearsal day for Laura and Alexander’s wedding. Thankfully I’m not serving in any official role as a photographer for the event. Wedding photograph is grueling business – I have tremendous admiration for the team that is shooting the wedding. I managed a few shots with my Panasonic GH2 at the rehearsal at St. Ignatius.
Alexander and his best man, Karim:
Alexander and Karim
The families watch
Maria practices her reading
Alexander and Laura sit patiently
On this day one year ago: The Guggenheim.
Guggenheim Museum New York
LAMU KENYA – We took a long walk in Lamu today, ending up at Anidan orphanage on the edge of the town. Anidan defied our expectations. It’s full of happy kids of all ages, 240 of them. It draws its population from the entire region. Children are orphans or abandoned or badly abused. It was started by a wealthy Spanish family that has a house in Lamu Interestingly the house is operated as a hotel, Red Pepper House, when the family is not in residence. Red Pepper House is our first choice for hotels in Lamu.
I took the Alpa with me on the walk. It’s poorly suited to photographing children – it works best on landscape and architecture – so I didn’t get any pictures of the kids that I’m proud of.
On this day one year ago: Maria Campbell.
NEW PRESTON CONNECTICUT – I’ve developed a rule of thumb for landscape photography. There are rare moments when the light is absolutely magical. It may be the “golden hour” or the moment when the sun breaks through after a storm. Some days and places are better than others, but really great magic light moments are fairly rare. Here’s my rule of thumb: If you experience a magic light moment stop whatever you are doing and photograph whatever is at hand with whatever equipment you have available. Even if the subject is mundane the light transforms it – perhaps turning it into a serious statement.
After endless rain we finally had a few moments of late afternoon sun creating a brief magic moment. Fortunately I had my Alpa TC and 60 meg back in the car and managed to find a place to stop in New Preston.
9 Main, New Preston Connecticut
On this day last year: Seagrams Building.
Seagram Building New York