Friday, December 25, 2009


I took a picture of these two women because I thought the blouse on the left with the Mondrian-ish print was a bit unusual. Upon further reflection, I pegged the two of them as nuns... undercover nuns.
It wasn't until I did a blowup on subject #1 on the left that I found evidence of their faith. Her medallion says Sisters of St. Francis. Ah, the power of having many megapixels.

Monday, December 21, 2009

Color Coordinated Cemetery - The cemetery at Trinity Church is located at the intersection of Broadway and Wall Street. It is the final resting place of many famous figures from history including Alexander Hamilton, Robert Fulton, Ralph Waldo Emerson and others. These graves date back to 1681.

I like the musty look of the stones. Some of them are covered with moss. I setup with my camera across Broadway and took shots as people passed on the sidewalk. Since there were wreaths out with red ribbons for the holidays, I focused on people who were wearing red as they passed.

Previously I took this picture of the benches lining one wall. I think they show a lot of character.

Sunday, December 13, 2009


Lines and circles... basic geometric shapes. A street crossing is made up of them. The evenly spaced lines to define a crosswalk. The circles of the manhole cover.

On this particular day of picture taking, the bright sun created strong shadows that defined a particular crosswalk. I was especially attracted to the manhole cover. I focused on it and watched the silhouettes pass. They weren't people, the bright light in my faces didn't make that possible, they were silhouettes.

I waited, and isolated the legs and shadows of the silhouettes as they moved through the geometry of the crossing.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

$20,000 bike

For whatever reason, Exchange Place was blocked off and there was bagged garbage all over the sidewalks. I heard a security man tell a driver, "That's a $20,000 bike under there. I told him not to park there." I walked across the street and saw what he was talking about and took this shot.

Monday, November 30, 2009

Leaving Shore

I've been on a few cruise ships, and have always found it exciting when the ship leaves dock for the first time. Just the fact that something that big is moving is amazing. But, with the music playing, people waving and the great views, it's an inspiring experience.

Here are some pictures from a recent trip to Mexico. They look best if you click on them to view larger. We were second in line to get out of the port at Ft. Lauderdale. First was the Celebrity ship next door. The light at sundown was amazing.
There were a lot of people waving (from the other ship also). This guy seemed to make a special trip to come wave. Maybe he was talking to someone on board?
We seemed to be in a race with this speed boat. It was a bit speedier than us, but he suffered when it came to onboard entertainment. It seemed to me that it was levitating over the water. The slow shutter speed and panning along with the boat made a rather cool effect.
People on deck, of course, were walking around, pointing, and looking.
And, there were some people who managed to get to the bar.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Oasis Stitching

So, I was headed out on a cruise from Ft. Lauderdale, headed towards Mexico. The port there had a number of ships waiting to take off. There were all quite large, but the shuttle bus driver pointed out one that was especially huge. It was "Oasis of the Seas", which I learned was the largest ship in the world. Some other passengers were getting off to take a trip on Oasis. They were travel agents from Canada. They were taking a one day ride to nowhere so they could review it. The ship has not yet taken its maiden voyage (hope their are enough lifeboats).

After getting on my own ship, "Enchantment of the Seas" (which was 11 decks itself). I got a view of the Oasis right across the pier. It was too large to get in one frame, so I took a series of pictures from one end to the next. The pieces looked like this.

I loaded them into my picture editor, and stitched them together to make the ship whole again. And, this is what I got. Looks a bit smaller, but it's all there. You can click the picture to get a larger view of the picture and get a better sense of its size.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Yankee Tickertape Recap

Friday was my second tickertape parade. The first was the one celebrating the Super Bowl victory of the Giants in 2008. While crowded, I had good positioning to get a feel for the parade and got some decent photos. But, that crowd seemed to be nothing compared to the Yankees parade. I couldn't get anywhere near the parade itself and didn't even try.

To get an idea of how far back the crowds went, in the shot below, the parade would be passing by near the traffic light way up ahead. The girl is looking the wrong way.

Instead, I focused on the people in their Yankee outfits. They didn't always feel like cheering. Many of them had been there since 7am (parade time was 11). Add on to that time to get your face painted.

Several were fighting to use the bathrooms in office buildings nearby, even though signs said NO PUBLIC BATHROOMS. Even the face painters got tired and eventually lost their enthusiasm. These two seemed to be done (this was after the parade).

Finally, I got this amusing moment on video from my iPhone. Apparently this flag was considered a weapon, and the guy holding it was removed.

Clickers - I was walking home in the vicinity of City Hall. Across the street I noticed a guy sitting casually in an orange vest and hat observing people as they passed. He was very serious looking and had something in his hand. Maybe a clicker.

I looked a little bit to his left and there was another guy. Watching, watching people pass. A little strange.

Then, I looked across Broadway and there was another! At the same intersection. Watching, counting, clicking.

I was a bit unnerving, they were everywhere. I had a funny feeling that I, in fact, was being watched. And, maybe, was being watched? Ahhhhhh!!!!!! No!!!!! Damn, I've been counted!

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Lunch Truck Vanity - So, a lunch truck was parked on Whitehall Street. It was one of those shiny high tech ones. I noticed this guy standing in the street waiting for service at a window. I thought his reflection was kind of cool, especially with half of his face cutoff. So, I started taking some pictures.

It was kind of strange that he was in the street since most people would be waiting on the sidewalk. And, obviously the vendor was spending his time with those on the other side of the truck. So, this guy keeps waiting. I could see he had a suitcase, so he was probably a tourist. Not sure what was up with his double hoody look, especially since it was a warm day. After a while, he started checking himself out in the reflection of the truck.

Finally, the merchant turned around and addressed the guy. Sure looks like he wasn't happy with this guy being on the wrong side of the truck, and the reaction from the tourist looks like he doesn't have a clue and is baffled by the strong reaction.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Tripod Work

Most of my picture taking is hand held. These are at places with a lot of light. Mostly outside. Fast moving people on the street. I don't often have the luxury of using a tripod. And I don't really like the overhead of carrying one around, although I do have a little tiny mini one that I occasionally don't use either.

But, I had an assignment to photograph the inside of a fabulous old church. I don't usually care much for churches, but this one was kind of special. It was built in 1914 and was just incredibly interesting with its stain glasses and multiple balconies. I had the place completely to myself.

I was left to my own devices pretty much for lighting and had to hunt down where the switches were. I finally found an electric panel in a back room. But, they control only a little bit of light. This meant, that I would need the tripod that I had brought along with me to take time exposures of the interior. This would be the first time I used it in years.

Even though it was very dark inside, taking these long shots made it look fully lit. Each shot would take 20 or 30 seconds in addition to the time to setup. But, it helped challenge me to think about the pictures differently. (I'm not usually that patient when I shoot).

Because it was pouring rain outside, I will need to take exteriors on a different trip. I won't need a tripod (but just may bring one anyway).

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

The Farm's View

When I was a kid, every year we would go up to the summer home my grandparents had in the Catskill mountains in NY. We called it simply, "The Farm". Above is a painting of how it looked in my memory. The Farm was sold long ago after my grandparents passed away, but recently we went back to take a look.

The house has now been greatly modernized primarily as it is now inhabited by a wealthy family. While it still resembles the original building build in the 1800s, it has been enlarged and modernized. Several wings have been added as well as a new barn down the road a bit. This is it now:

The original horse hitching post remains where it always was right in front, looking much like it did in the painting.
What is also unchanged is the look across the street. A magnificent view of a slate wall, field, and distant mountains. I remember the view would change daily based on the weather. The focal point always was a tower built on the primary mountain called Point Lookout. After a while, the tower burned down but the main building was still visible way up on the mountain. Point Lookout remains an Inn and has a view of 5 states. It was fascinating how the view could appear so many different ways.
Our visit came on a rainy foggy day. Sadly, the mountains could not be seen. But, I still had memories and the view here was still gorgeous. I am happy that it has been kept up and improved over the years.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Tour Group Underhead

A rainy day. I turned around to look outside from my office window on the 32nd floor. Straight down was a tour group which I spotted by the clustering of colored umbrellas. I guess my windows need washing, but still an interesting perspective.

Friday, October 2, 2009


Now, as the days are getting shorter, its getting dark when I get out from work. While there's still some light, the street lights and store signs pop a bit. So, I'm noticing the neon signs much more.

This shot could have been me, looking at old baseball cards in the window of a sports card store. I call this picture, "Memorabilia Desires".

This picture is self-explanatory.

For this one, I pointed at the sign and just kept shooting as people came by. I was looking for a mix of people, or some interesting positioning. I took about 40 shots. There was one of a huge portly guy, which would have been a nice juxtaposition with the deli food, but it was a bit fuzzy. This is the one I liked the best.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Strolling and Strumming

I heard the music, then I saw him coming. This guy was playing his guitar on the move. He was playing the crowd, but not as a concert. He was moving along with the rush hour crowd in full tune. He was strolling and strumming, in that order. Occasionally pausing to relate to those passing by, but mostly just passing through.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

A Philadelphia Neighborhood

I spent a few days in a quaint neighborhood on the west side of Philadelphia. The brick paver sidewalks were surrounded by big houses with broad porches. On a cloudy day, I took a walk and looked around.