Me. Yes, I already published this image once, but I thought it was worth publishing a second time since I was informed yesterday that I, and this picture, won the regional group award in the World Wide Photo Walk contest, which I wrote about in an earlier blog. A local gallery – Southwestern Photos — wants to hang it for a month and drive the local publicity. Members of the gallery were also the group leaders. While I’m happy, I’m actually very surprised. I rarely win anything. I think the judges liked this picture, because around here they are all HDR crazy. This isn’t HDR, and looks very different so it may have caught their eye. The next stop for this image is an an entrant in the global contest. I have no idea how it will do. I looked at some of the other images from the shoot on WWPW website and there are some pretty good ones, esepcially from photographers in Old Delhi and Chennai, India.
The last time that I went to Las Vegas, I found Italy. Or, something like that. This image was made at night, in front of the Venetian Casino/Hotel. I used some of my little “tricks” to make the color a little richer and more vibrant. It looks like Venice. It almost feels like Venice. And yet, it’s in a location about 400 miles away from me.
I’m going to the Santa Fe Photo Festival tomorrow. It’s supposed to be really good this year. It’s being held mostly in the newish arts district which is near the train station. So, I’m taking the Railrunner to Santa Fe for the first time. It should be fun not having a car and being forced to find parking spaces in and around the plaza. The Railrunner is a short haul train that currently runs from Belen to Santa Fe with a lot of stops in between. Round trip on Saturday is $5.00. Can’t beat that. Eventually, the grand vision is to extend Railrunner service north to Denver and south to El Paso.
The next big event in Santa Fe is the Indian Market. No. It’s not what you are thinking. It’s about American Indian arts and crafts. Santa Fe fills up with about 40,000 extra people per weekend day, which is just about half of the city’s normal population. As you might expect, parking is very hard to find. Viewers and shoppers flow into the plaza and then onto the side streets in what looks like one continuous flow of humankind.
A word about the name that I used, American Indian. That seems to be the latest proper way to name Original People since there was a discussion on a show called “Native American Calling.” The host made a point that anyone born on United States soil is really a Native American. The callers settled on American Indian and that name seems to be catching on.
I’ve been going to Garcia’s for years. I started going when I was just passing through Albuq – uerque on the way from somewhere to either Santa Fe or Taos. I’ve been eating there for probably 30 years. There were two when I began. There is one on Central Avenue, which is what this image shows and one on Fourth Street. There are a few more smaller versions open today, but none have quite the cache of the first two. I think, back in the 1990s, the hip crowd in Nob Hill discovered it. I’ll never forget visiting a colleague and friend who, along with his wife, took me to this “cool” cafe for breakfast. When we got there, a line stretched down the block. I’m not sure the Garcia family would agree with me, but I’m glad those days are over. Garcia’s is back to what it should be, a blue collar joint for locals. Oh yeah. In Fall, the posole is the best. Their green chile is home roasted and always good.
It seems like, for better or worse, I might have a little too much work. The good is obvious. It’s hard getting work these days. The bad isn’t so obvious since I don’t really talk about personal issues on this blog. I’ll keep it short. Back in November of last year, I had my right hip diagnosed as being toast. That’s the technical term. It seems like 30 years of carrying about 30 pounds of gear on one side caught up with me. I scheduled my hip replacement surgery. I finally had it in March. Yes, those surgeries are very popular. Even though I’m out and about and working a lot these days, the total healing time is somewhere around 12 to 18 months. I tire easily. I can’t work a full day if I’m walking. However, I’ve been doing way too much marketing and that has been generating work which is mostly long term projects. But, they are the kind of projects that will keep me moving. I have a US cities project that is ongoing and is starting to take on a life of its own. I have a baseball project which I can dovetail with cities. There are others which will fit in with all the rest. It could be worse. I could be begging for work. As they say, “be careful what you wish for.”
This is an out take from the Worldwide Photo Walk, which I keep confusing with David Letter – man’s production company which he calls Worldwide Pants. Again, our shoot — or area of coverage — was based in Albuquerque’s Old Town. This man is an American Indian who sells his crafts on the plaza in Old Town. He comes about once a month. There are identical scenes like this in the plazas in Santa Fe. In Albuquerque, Old Town actually stretches in every direction away from the plaza and into the little surrounding neighborhoods where are there some very quaint, old and attractive houses.
Agua Fresca is a Mexican semi-sweet drink made of fresh fruits, water and little sweetener from an Agave plant. You see it at state fairs and the like. The very best is home made since the recipe is a little more controlled. I had some amazing Lavender Agua Fresca at the Lavender Festival. It is very clean tasting with a hint of the fruit or flower that gives the drink its unique taste. Unfortunately, the drink that you find at state fairs — like the image — is mass produced and usually has some food coloring to attract attention and potential customers. It may also be too sweet since Agave syrup is a little pricey and it is often replaced with simple syrup or sugar.
Once again, I return to the churches series. This is a little collection of crosses at St. Francis Cathedral in Santa Fe. They represent the Stations of the Cross that is celebrated on Good Friday prior to Easter Sunday. The interesting this about the cathedral is that, although there is a huge and massive main church, there are little side chapels that are used for individual prayers and offerings. On one side, it looks like the chapel was added sometime in the late 1800s. But, this chapel, on the other side of the cathedral, appears to have been built in the late 1950s or early 1960s. I guess that you could say the cathedral is a living thing and not simply a monument.
This image was made inside the Church of St. Phillip Neri. It is my second entry in the World Wide Photo Walk event. It is enhanced slightly using Topaz software which seems to bring out color spectrum that the sensor sees but can’t reproduce without help. To the naked eye, the colorful areas just look like sunlit white marble. This may be the only unique image I made during the walk, since it did not occur to most of my colleagues to go inside of any building with the exception of the little chapel.