I like color. Even though I claim not to be a nature photographer, I like color in nature. Here are a few images of New Mexican skies. Lots of colorful sunsets in that state. The picture of the moon and the cityscape is an out take from the Super moon event last year.
Yes. I would write a lot today, but I need a break. I’m sure that you do too. So instead, I’m sharing a taste of this month’s Picture A Day project. I’ll post all of this month’s PAD work on April 1, since I still have a few more pictures to shoot, this being March 30 an all. 🙂 This is just a night traffic scene. I’m on Camp headed into the CBD of New Orleans.
I’ve been reviewing portraits. Since my newest portfolio is portrait-based, I have a lot of choices to make. What stays in? What goes out? Which picture is a hero picture? Which images support it? Lot’s of thinking to do. A lot of instinct too. But, it doesn’t stop there. There is a lot of data to study in an effort to further identify my intended market.
What does this all mean? It’s yet another version of the old 80-20 Rule. Usually, in business that means 20% of the people do 80% of the work. But, there are other applications. Many other applications. For instance, in most working photographers cases, it means that you spend 20% of the time doing that you really love — making pictures. The other 80% of time is spent doing other stuff. Accounting. Marketing, Writing blog posts. Meetings. Testing. More Marketing. You get it. Very little in the way of actually making a picture.
So. Over the past few days, I’ve been working on portraits. Not photographing them. Editing them. So I can get more work and make more pictures. It’s a circle. It never ends. For those who have followed me for a little while, forgive me on this one. You probably seen it twice — in color and reworked in black and white. But, the picture is part of the editing process. And, some of the newer folks haven’t seen it yet.
I did a little consulting yesterday. That is to say, I had somebody give me a little advice, not the other way around. Even though I’ve been told this before, I haven’t done that much with it. But, the verdict is this. If I want to make move to a much bigger audience, I really should push my portraits since that’s what I seem to do best. The first obvious step is to curate or edit or whatever people are calling it these days. The second step, in my mind, is to experiment a little here. The next step is to do a final edit and then to produce a printed book, a suitable website and blog site (like this one – ha) and something a little different for i-Pad displays. It’s a couple of weeks process, so bear with me. Here are three for me, and hopefully, for you to think about.
So, here are the pictures. My friend and Cajun fiddle player extraordinaire, Jonno. We are sitting in a coffee shop and it just looked like the right time.
The tuba man. I was walking through Jackson Square in The French Quarter and saw he sitting there, taking a break and talking.
Finally, the truck driver. Turns out he is a pretty well-known American Indian artist who sells his work in Santa Fe, New Mexico. When I was photographing the
Trading Post, he pulled up in beat up old pick up truck to have a chat.
These are my kinds of portraits. We’ll see if I can make the transition.
Okay. This is too weird even for me. I often write about a road called Paseo de Volcan. Or, Exit 149 off of I-40 West, just west of Albuquerque, New Mexico. It was my go to place for certain kinds of pictures. When the so-called “super moon” phenomenon occurred last year, that where I headed. When I left New Mexico that’s where I head to make my last few pictures. It was called Paseo de Volcan because about five – six miles from I-40 you come to some lump-like mountains which are actually long dormant volcanoes. Not to worry, the last time they erupted was some 30,000 years ago.
None of that is weird. But, it here it comes. I left New Mexico for the much greener swamps of Southeast Louisiana on July 7, 2011. I Googled this morning to make sure that I had the spelling right. I found this. On July 8, 2011, the state saw fit to rename the road Atrisco Vista Road. By July 9, the new highway signs were up on I-40. Sheesh. I didn’t realize that I have so much power. I’m not sure that even if I do that I want it.
The three pictures for today are from “my” road. One is of the “super moon.” The other two images were made on July 5, 2011. I was very lucky that night. My eyes, brain, and heart were working. And, the light… the light was just right.
I’ve posted about this topic in the past. I make a lot of photographs through the windshield of my car when I am driving. As odd is this may sound, it’s probably safer when I’m driving 70-75-80-85 mph than when I am driving slower and in traffic. Even though I brace the camera on the dashboard and let all the auto functions do their things, I’m still not fully and totally concentrating on the thing that I should be doing which is driving. In traffic, that can mean tapping some other car’s rear. On the road, I can see down field and take appropriate measures. One day this may come back to haunt me, especially as I get older. But, for right now it seems to be okay. Having written all of that, as far as picture-taking goes, I never really see what my camera sees until I am stopped somewhere and take the time to review the images. Often times, I don’t even do that. I just wait until I’ve downloaded them on to a computer so I can see them bigger then 1″ x 3.” That also should give you an inkling into how I work. I rarely chimp. When I do, it’s mostly to check the exposure not to see what I photographed. Who can tell anything on that little itty bitty LCD?
These are all New Mexican pictures. The brownish image is made at the end of Route 66/Central Avenue to the west. The darker blue image is made on I-40 northbound in Albuquerque, and the lighter blue image is made on I-25 southbound, just south of Santa Fe. I like the light. I like the feeling. And, most of all, I like that I didn’t get killed making them.
Time for a little something different. It is Springtime in New Orleans. After a lot of rain, the sun has reappeared and the flowers are blooming. Well, down here, they never stop blooming. But, more Spring-like flowers are showing their faces. So… I took my dog for her walk — well, two walks actually, one in the morning and one around her dinnertime– and I spotted this one little patch of flowers that were just glistening in the very late afternoon sun. After I took her home and got her fed, I went back to make a few pictures. What? No camera, you ask. Nope. No camera. I also don’t use her walks for more than my incidental exercise. I’ve always looked at her walks as just that — her walks. She leads the way. She choses the route. She stops and goes when she wants to. So, no camera. But, that often serves its own purpose because by the time I returned to that patch, which was only about 30 minutes later, the light was very pretty.
Here’s the thing. With pictures like these, I usually edit — excuse me, the new term in curate — the take down to one image. But, not this time. I like three pictures equally well. So you chose. Make a comment or two. Tell me which one you like. You could add why, but that’s not necessary. Sometimes you just like what you like with no real reason behind that.
I mentioned having dinner at The Clover Grill in yesterday’s post. Today, I thought I’d show you a picture. Just one. Sometimes, I feel protective of the places I like. At any rate, The Clover Grill is located on the down river end of Bourbon Street in The French Quarter just where things start to quiet down a little bit. In New Orleans, many people describe locations as being up river or down river because the city is shaped in a crescent along the flow of The Mississippi River and so you can’t really say east, west, north and south. After all, in certain places in the city it appears that the sun is rising in the South. And, we all know that doesn’t happen.
Back to this picture. You’ll have to eat at The Clover Grill to understand it when I say, any and all sorts of people are likely to show up. it’s a gathering place for what makes New Orleans special. Here’s just one picture. Enjoy it. It’s a portrait that borders on photojournalism.
We’ve had a lot of rain during the past few days in Southeast Louisiana. Feeling a little stir crazy, we went to The French Quarter for a bite to eat. We stopped into the Clover Grill on lower Bourbon Street. It’s a little dive dinner. But, it’s my kind of dive. Besides, without fanfare and despite all these so-called gourmet hamburger places popping up, they make the best hamburger you’ll ever eat. And, you can get it with a couple of kinds of cheese, bacon, chile and a small defibrillator. The service is amazing. I’m not going to tell you why. Just go there and see for yourself. A great dinner deserves a great walk, so up Bourbon Street we went. The rain drifted back into play and boy did it rain. But, that never stops the Bourbon Street antics. People were dancing in the street, running in the rain and enjoying themselves as if there was no bad weather.
Me? I was just following a quote by former NGS’ staffer Sam Able which goes like this. “When the weather turns bad, the pictures get good. ” What could be better? Bright lights. Reflections in the wet street. Lot’s of people enjoying themselves. Bands playing noisy covers. No, it wasn’t as crowded as Mardi Gras. And, thank God for that. I could actually move around a bit and get soaked to the gills.
Here’s a few of the pictures now. Sort of a debut; since they are lot fresher — they were made last night — than a lot of images that I post around here.