Dusk comes to what is now called The Shrine on Airline.

Ah, dusk.

The picture almost looks like it could have been made in France. It wasn’t. It was made at a park and baseball stadium now called, The Shrine on Airline.

To me and many others, we think that’s a stupid name. It is home for the next two weeks to a AAA baseball team, called The Baby Cakes. That has to be the stupidest name ever for a sports team. The name and the team branding was created by two 22 year old designers from San Diego. They spent a whole three days in New Orleans. They thought they knew us. Anywhere is more complex than that.

The name is sort of a shortened version of the baby that comes in a king cake. It doesn’t make sense in the way that they used it. There was a big commotion about it, but team management kept the name. The sold a lot of merchandise, which is what mattered to them. After all, who doesn’t love an evil little baby holding a baseball bat in traditional Mardi Gras colors?

In two weeks, the Baby Cakes last ever game will be played in Greater New Orleans. They are moving to Wichita, Kansas, where a $90 million dollar stadium is being built for them. The team owns the name so that may travel with them. Thankfully.

At this point there is no replacement for them. There are a lot of AA teams located in the Gulf Coast. Hopefully, one will come here. I hope so. The baseball quality will be better since that’s where the stars of tomorrow play, as opposed to AAA where the stars of yesterday are rehabbing or hoping to catch another shot at the “big show.”

See what comes out of a simple little picture. Hopefully, you just learned something. Or, not.

One more thing.

I’m a New York Yankee fan. I was born to be one. Their AA team is based in New Jersey. Maybe the parish can lure them down here,

They are called The Pork Rolls.

Advertisements


All in one picture.

I went back.

Just in case. I do that sometimes.

Here’s a pro tip for you. If you have the time, and if you are close to the place where you made a good picture once, go back. You never know what you’ll find the second time. Or, even the third time.

You’ll never make a perfect picture, because perfection is for angels. But, you might make a better picture than your first attempt. Or, at least it will be different. That’s what this picture is. Different.

When I finally start reviewing my summer time collection, I’ll compare them. I might even let you compare them. You know. The so-called wisdom of the crowd. Storyteller and Laskowitzpictures, LLC isn’t quite that democratic, but I do listen. Because. You never know.

Anyway.

The picture. Like the first version of this scene, I stuck my lens into the scene as I saw it. The sun is a big part of the scene. They — whoever they is — say that you shouldn’t do this. I did it. I do it often. I’m still alive. So are the cameras and lenses.  Not doing this is just cheating yourself out of a potentially good picture.

That’s what I think. What do you think?


Summer picture number four.

Painted sky.

A particular kind of summer sky. If you aren’t looking up, it’s likely that you’ll miss it. If you don’t see light, and color, it’s like that you won’t get it.

I was talking to a somebody that I know a little. I was describing what I saw. She looked at me with a quizzical look on her face. It came down to, “Oh yeah. you’re a photographer.” But, she didn’t see it. No dramatic light. No golden color.

I did.

That’s what separates us for so many others. Us? Visual artists. We see a little differently. We feel a little differently. We see and feel with more than our eyes. We see with our brains. We feel with our hearts. With our souls.

With any luck this picture is good enough to capture what I saw. What I felt.

I feel good about this picture. It’s simple. It might be good enough to be part of my summer series.  Then again…


Drifting in the darkness.

A single cloud.

With the face of a dog. Drifting in the early evening.

As a prelude.

To the storm to come. There are two. The big one, that I mentioned yesterday.

And, the little one, which arrived in the early morning. Within three hours it managed to dump nine inches of rain in our neighborhood. The entire city, and outlying regions, is flooded with about two or three feet of water. Even our street, which never floods, is overwhelmed. Water is up to our porch and well into our driveway. The pool is overflowing.

We had a tornado warning, a flash flood warning, a high wind advisory and a lakefront overflow warning all at once. We are a very special place.

If this keeps up, and with the big storm arriving Friday, it is very likely that the levees holding back The Mississippi River will overtop. That’ll be something. Low lying streets along the river will be flooded with I don’t know how many feet of water.

The big storm is going to make landfall as Hurricane Barry, a Category 1 storm somewhere near Lake Charles Saturday morning in the daylight hours. It will dump anywhere from 6 to 12 inches of rain inland. I have a very soft spot for Lake Charles. That’s where we finally made our temporary shelter after we evacuated following Hurricane Katrina. The folks there took good care of us. I wish them well. And, prayers.

That’s our story.

Have a good thought for us.


Drifting.

Drifting. Floating.

It’s pretty much the same thing.

Air. Water.

Does it matter?

It’s gentle.

A good way to start the week.

I made the picture on Sunday. You’ll see it on Monday. Either way. It’s the beginning of the week. For some of you.

I’d tell you more. But, what’s to tell?

Enjoy it for what it is.

But.

For technically inclined.

I’ll tell you a bit about the post production. If you’re old, like me, you’ll know. Back in the good old film days, we used Polaroid film much like we use an LCD today. We took a picture with a Polaroid camera to check the framing and lighting. It was hard to check the exposure. Then, we used a film camera to make the real photograph based on what we saw.

We usually threw the Polaroids in the trash.

Some smart art photographer realized that by pressing the wet Polaroid film onto a piece of art paper you could transfer the image to the paper and make — you guessed it — art. It was tricky. The pressure had to be correct. Timing was essential. Usually you managed to make one out five transfers close to the way that you’d hoped.

It fell out of vogue.

Now you can do it with editing software.

That’s what I did.


Spring skies.

I looked up.

I liked the sky. It needed a subject. I framed that lone tree into the picture. I never saw the sun. I knew it was there because of the bright highlight in picture. But, the sun didn’t show up in the LCD.

When I developed the image, there it was. A little, tiny circle in the highlight. I helped it a little by toning down the highlight. That’s it.

I was lucky. The sensor saw what I couldn’t. It’s very hard to use a LCD in very bright sunlight. That’s why I mostly use the eyepiece.

I could tell you that I’m a cynical guy. That I always try to look beyond false truths.

Not today.

I’ll save that kind of post for the weekdays.

Instead, I’ll look at a book that just arrived. Not a photo book. A children’s book. Written by Julian Lennon. The oldest son of the late John Lennon. I bought it through his sales agent. Jules signed it.

How cool is that?


Into the sky.

Spring’s rebirth.

A seasonal cycle. Now you see it. Now you don’t. We are at a seasonal point that you can’t help but see it.

If you look at Facebook, the keeper of all infinity, your pages will start filling up with spring flower pictures. It starts around now and lasts for a while as our friends in the snowy north start to awaken from their winter slumbers.

Makes me smile.

Since I only look at my threads on various social media twice a day, I wasn’t aware of the melt down of Facebook and their related sites. Apparently, it got so bad that Facebook had to go to their competitor’s site and tweet about the problems.

So many people were frustrated by the whole thing.

As I said to a friend of mine, it was the best day in a long time. No alerts. No emails saying that somebody commented on one of my pictures. No pop ups from Instagram telling me somebody likes something. Just a pleasant day. A lot of work got done. Not just by me, but by a lot of people.

I suppose the young lady who has a big following, and is an influencer on Instagram, and whose mom was arrested for bribing a USC official in that huge scam was upset. While she lying around on the president of USC’s yacht.  She couldn’t make money while it was down.

Damn.

Funny thing about her. She doesn’t care about college. She makes really big bucks using Instagram. That’s her job.

I’m willing to bet that she hasn’t taken the time to look around and see a place like the one in this picture. Sure. She gets outside. For big deal stuff. But, little stuff?

I’m pretty sure that I’m having more fun seeing stuff like this, than any of the people who were busted. Before they were busted. They seem like a miserable lot. They are too busy cheating.

Many people are blaming the parents, coaches and some colleges themselves. They claim that the kids probably didn’t know anything about it. Yeah. Right. That’s why little miss was cruising around on the college president’s yacht.  Of course the kids are culpable.

One more thing.

I don’t know about you. But, I paid for my schooling. Every time. At every university. I didn’t cheat to pass tests. I didn’t claim to be anything that I wasn’t. I just worked hard.

It’s amazing.

How a pretty spring picture could bring all of that up. It shouldn’t. I’ve known for a long time that the game was rigged. Every game. With every kind of rigging.

Anyway.

Look up. Look down. Look all around. In front. Behind. To the side. See what you see. Make a picture. Make another one. Keep making pictures. Until you are done. If you are really good, it could take you one picture. Or, two. If you are like me, maybe 15 or 20. But, I like to explore the scene. I don’t machine gun. No point in that.

You might make a picture like this one. Or, not. Or, a better one.

But.

There is no competition. Unless it’s with yourself. As they say, help a brother out.

 


Into the night

Another super moon.

I thought these things only happened every so many years. We seem to be having them every few months these days. I’m sure it has to do with the angle of the earth’s rotation, but still.

Not everything has to be super. To me, this is just a big clear moon. I’ve been tracking its rise for a week or so. I’m lucky that I did. Full clouds tonight, from any number of locations. That, and big winds and storms. Another storm blanketing more snow on most of the northern states.

So.

We seem to live in the age of big descriptive adjectives. Everything is bigger and better. I read something about a band. Apparently, their P.R. folks wrote it. By the time I was done reading I was convinced they were bigger and better than The Beatles.

I never heard of them until I read that copy.

Granted, I’m old school, but tell me about them in simple terms, post a link to some of their music and let me decide. Maybe they are the best thing since The Beatles.

Speaking of music, I suppose letting me hear new music (to me) is one reason that I like Spotify. They release something called Discover Weekly. No comments. Just about twenty or so songs. Save what you like. Explore the band’s music. Forget the rest.

And speaking of technology, why oh why does this happen? It’s only Google. One day, I’m humming along. Everything opens and closes fine. Everything is fast. Everything works. At night I put my machine to sleep. All good.

The next day.

Nothing wants to open. Google freezes. Rebooting Google won’t help. By then, it’s starting to affect the computer because it’s slowing everything down. That requires a computer reboot. Apple computers take forever to do that. That lengthens my work day. Oh, and it drops my homepage layover.

It’s always something.

The picture. As I mentioned, I’ve been following this moon for at least a week. It’s fairly simple. See it. Frame it with something that gives it context. Make as many pictures as you need to find the right balance of sharpness. A shutter speed of about 500th/sec and about an f-stop of about f8 does it for me. Somewhere in there. Because. You want to freeze the moon’s motion. And, you want some depth of field. That’s hand-held (in a pinch) or on a tripod (ideal). I’m always working in a pinch.

There is some post production going on. Mostly to bring you to what I saw at the time, with the sun just below the horizon line.

That’s it.

If you’re in a place to chase the moon tonight, have fun.

 

 

 


Like someplace else.

An experiment.

I play around like this every now and then. I make pictures in post production by stacking two or more images. I looked at the picture in yesterday’s post and decided that I wasn’t quite done with it.

I worked on one of those pictures where I pointed the lens up to the sky while framing it with bare tree branches. When I was fairly happy with the results, I added yesterday’s seed pod picture. I placed it in the background and away I went.

You are looking at the result. This was inspired by a burst of creativity. Or, by sheer boredom. I’ll get back to you on that one.

What I really did was take another break from reality. I turned off the news. I only responded to tweets about art. Same with Facebook. Today, when I returned to my usual haunts, I found that nothing had changed. Twitter is still a house of horrors. Facebook is boring because the usual suspects keep posting the usual things. I am enjoying my new NGS connection. People talk about pictures there. They offer constructive criticism. And, they are kind.

I think that’s where you’ll see more of me in the future. Of course, I live here. At Storyteller. On WordPress. And, a little bit on Instagram. These places are interesting. And, they are still fun. Kind of.

In rethinking my rethinking, I came up with an internal question. How much social media is too much social media. The wise folks who claim to know something about building followers say that you should tweet about once an hour. They say that you should post at least five times a day in Instagram. Same with Facebook. I don’t use any others, but I imagine that it’s about the same on all the rest.

If that’s true, I’d better hire somebody to do this. I have other things to do. Like make pictures for all of those places, for clients, and for me. Then, there’s the personal stuff… the really important stuff.

I don’t think that I’ll be hiring anybody soon. It’s important to get my work seen. But, still.

That’s my ramblings for today. I’m not sure why this occurred to me after almost eight years, but thanks for being here. You are a big reason that Storyteller still exists.