On The Way Home


Driver's eye view on the Crescent City Connection.

Driver’s eye view on the Crescent City Connection.

After working for a couple of hours on Algiers Point it was time to go home. I felt photographically fulfilled. That’s pretty much the whole point, isn’t it?

Since the golden light seemed to just crash into the ground, we left the Westbank before darkness actually arrived. As usual, I propped the camera on the dashboard and pushed the button. No, no, no. I don’t raise the camera to my eye. I just set everything on auto-something and let the camera do its thing.

In order to help orient you, the Central Business District and the French Quarter is on the right. We are heading to the left side of the picture toward Uptown once we get off the bridge. In case you are wondering, this is the Crescent City Connection on Sunday evening. Normally, it’s a parking lot around the time we passed over it. That probably would have been better… if you are trying to make pictures. Most people are just trying to go somewhere.

So.

A change is gonna come.

Before we hit the road again, I did a lot of work in The Lower 9th Ward and in a bit of the 7th Ward. One of my favorite abandoned houses in the 7th Ward is starting to be demolished from neglect. The second story fell off. Into the street. The entire second story was laying in the street when I passed by. Of course I stopped and took a few pictures. Well, more than a few pictures. I guess part of a building laying in the street will get the fine folks in city government to actually do something. Or not. What am I thinking? The is New Orleans. Not.

A Closer Look


Taking a little closer look at the bridge spanning the Mississippi River at New Orleans, otherwise known as the Crescent City Connection.

Taking a little closer look at the bridge spanning the Mississippi River at New Orleans, otherwise known as the Crescent City Connection.

This place reminds me of “The Crunge.” An old Led Zeppelin song.

It closes like this… “Excuse me. Oh will you excuse me. I’m just trying to find the bridge… Has anybody seen the bridge? Have you seen the bridge? I ain’t seen the bridge. Where is the confounded bridge?”

However. It’s not about a bridge like this one. This one is the Crescent City Connection. It spans the Mississippi River. Crunge is British musician slang for the groove and singer Robert Plant is referring to a James Brown song when he asks about the bridge. The whole song is really a studio jam. A sort of musical bridge. At least that’s what people say. People say a lot of things.

That’s the music. Here’s the picture.

It’s one more from that post rainstorm dusk take. It’s probably one of the earliest I made when we arrived at the scene. Since I’m motivated by fear of failure, I generally take a bunch of pictures that I don’t think will make the cut. But, I know that at least I have something. Sometimes the pictures are more than just something. Usually, nobody will ever see them. I don’t like publishing, submitting or distributing a bunch of pictures just for the sake of bloated volume. I’m a less is more kind of guy. Besides, it’s sort of a respect thing for me. It’s about you. You’re busy. I don’t need to bomb you with a bunch of pictures because I don’t have the courage to do my own editing, or curating or culling. Or, whatever you want to call it.

Painterly. Or Something.


Light changes quickly following a storm.

Light changes quickly following a storm.

In the last two days I showed you a couple of pictures that I made from pretty much the same location. Today’s picture is the third. It was one of those evenings. Luck and timing came together. This picture was made before the big bold sunset picture I published two days ago. The light was sort of peaking through, out of, and around the clouds. When it finally broke through two layers of clouds, wonderful and amazing yellow light came streaming out. It bathed just about everything in a golden warm glow. I didn’t have to do much except run around madly and press the button.

So.

What are you looking at? To the right you see the levee with a gravel road leading to it. The levee in this area is very wide. You can stroll, run, bike or drive on it. Well, you can’t drive on it. You will get ticketed or arrested. But approved vehicles, mostly city or state cars and trucks, can drive on it. Next, there is a dirt and gravel road that is actually the end of a paved street. Way in the background is the bridge known as the Crescent City Connection. That how we travel from Uptown to Algiers Point.

It may be the light, or it may just be the rural look, but this feels like the South to me. By the way, the dirt isn’t normally this red here. But, that strong yellow light painted everything. For those of you who think that I added it, either by Photoshop or filter, trust me. I didn’t need to. Yes. I did clean out some shadows in the trees and bushes. I sharpened the picture a bit, but that was just to compensate for the camera’s normal technical issues.

Train Time Too


Freight train, the Crescent Connection and the blue hour.

Freight train, the Crescent Connection and the blue hour.

Those of you who have been hanging out with me for a while know that I like trains. I take pictures of trains almost any chance that I get. It is even better when there is a big bridge in the background and I happen to be on the scene during blue hour.

I took this as we were heading to that very same bridge. We needed to cross the river after I made yesterday’s picture of New Orleans at sunset. Somehow, I managed to make a couple of pretty good pictures while we were on the Westbank. Sometimes I get lucky. Very lucky. You’ll see them throughout the week.

This place? Wow. This used to be a big locomotive and freight car yard. Today it is limited to three tracks. I’m working from a two lane street that was once two more tracks. A living example… everything changes.

From The Other Side


New Orleans from Algiers Point.

New Orleans from Algiers Point.

Yes. The headline says it all. From the other side of the Mississippi River. The picture was made from Algiers Point, looking at The French Quarter. Yes. The river in all its sunset glory. Golden, orange and purple. Yes. The river with a small ferry in the foreground and a long, long barge in mid-river. It’s a working river.

And, there’s the sky…

The picture. Just a little backstory. We are home for a few days after traveling a little too much. After reading the weather reports for the past few days and knowing that rain poured on the region for a day and a half, I knew that this sunset might be pretty amazing. But, it’s weather. You never know. The word to emphasize is “might.”

Anyway.

We got settled in, tossed the laundry in the machine, had a little dinner and headed to one of my favorite places during the summer. Point Algiers, located on the Westbank. It’s an interesting place. Not only is it actually a neighborhood in The City of New Orleans, but it is one of the oldest neighborhoods in the city. Yet, it lies across the river from the rest of New Orleans.

So, the weather did what I hoped it would. The clouds started breaking apart and moving on. The sun started peaking through and below the clouds. The rest was easy. Nature did it. All I had to do was be there. F8 and be there. Standing in front of better stuff.

River of Gold


From Holy Cross looking across the Mississippi River at The Crescent City Connection.

From Holy Cross looking across the Mississippi River at The Crescent City Connection.

If you wait long enough as the sun sets the color in the sky goes crazy. This happens anywhere in the world. But, with New Orleans sub-tropical moist summer air and muted light, the color really gets weird sometimes. You’re looking at it. Weirdness.

This picture was made looking across the Mississippi River directly towards the Crescent City Connection with the city on the right, and the Westbank on the left. Everything looks peaceful. Quiet. Easy. As in The Big Easy.

Watching The River Flow


Moving freight at the intersection of the Mississippi River and the Industrial Canal.

Moving freight at the intersection of the Mississippi River and the Industrial Canal.

The mighty Mississippi River. The Great River. Old Man River.

Whatever you call it, it rises in northern Minnesota and meanders for 2,340 miles to the Mississippi River Delta at The Gulf of Mexico. I could write for screens and screens and never really touch what it means, what it does and what it is really like. Let’s just say that it influences those of us who live along its banks. A lot.

This picture wasn’t made on the river. Exactly. It was made on a major split called the Industrial Canal. The river, itself, is maybe a couple hundred yards to the left in this image. The canal is five and half miles long and connects the river to Lake Ponchartrain. It is used to move freight. Dredging began in 1918 and was completed five years later. It was this canal’s levees that broke during Hurricane Katrina and flooded the Lower 9th Ward.

The rest. I took the picture from one of those levees. One that didn’t break. You can walk along the levees for miles and miles. Of course, I was chasing dusk light which is so creamy in the summer. It’s that sub-tropical southern thing working for me. Again.

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