Never more.

R

escued from my archives.

I found this picture while I was looking for something else. That’s sort of the way I make pictures, on the way to some place else.

The funny thing about the picture is that the subject doesn’t exist. Not anymore. It was a designer’s idea as part of the landscaping of a new venue.

The venue is all angles and made of metal. I suppose bamboo made a nice counterpoint, but the it was planted on the hottest side of the building in really dry soil.

I photographed it the day it was planted. Two weeks later the bamboo was dry and starting to die. Two weeks later there were broken stalks and little more.

Eventually the landscapers got around to clearing it and planting something else. Some of it succeeded. Most did not because they planted it too close to the artist driveway. Big touring trucks rolled over it again, again.

Oh well.

S

o, while I was working on this post I was listening to a new record by Los Lobos called, “Native Sons.”

It’s all covers.

That doesn’t sound great does it?

But, in their hands the songs are better than the originals. Better yet, I can sing along to most of it.

I can’t sing the two Spanish songs which is my fault for listening to my teachers in high school. They said take Latin. It’ll be fun and prepare you for college.

I never once used Latin in college, but I could have spoken Spanish in a lot of places.

Oh well.


In the garden.

Home.

This picture is less than two hours old. At least it is from Noon, Central Daylight Time. The time in New Orleans.

Yes. I know what I say about letting a picture marinate. That’s my theory. It’s not a rule. Even if it was, rules are meant to be broken. If you have an idea of what you are doing. Disruption for its own sake is wasteful and harmful. Just look at the current state of The United States government. As I’ve said, this is not a political blog. But, my country is leaderless unless you count bombastic tweets and threats, which aren’t law or legislation.

That’s not the point of the picture.

I walked outside. A dog joined me. We stumbled upon this scene. She stopped and let me take the picture. I knew what I had. I actually have two versions. This one. And, another in which the picture is just clouds and bubbling water. More minimalistic. I’ll show you that tomorrow. There is no better and best this time. It’s a toss-up.

Oddly, now that I’m back, I have a couple of brand new pictures waiting to go. I guess I’m ready. My eyes are working just fine. And, the pictures are just sort of popping up on the scene. That’s when you know they are getting good. It’s the picture. Not the photographer.

This picture. I already told you about most of it. I just tuned things up in post production. For those of you who are wondering, I used Snapseed, OnOne followed by Affinity. Affinity is sort of a Photoshop clone that does everything I want it to do. It’s inexpensive and the updates are free. No more monthly charges, or expensive updates. There is a learning curve, mostly because the terminology is different from Photoshop.


On a cold day.
On a cold day.

We are heading into the Winter Solstice.

The shortest day of the year. It also means that despite some cold days for a lot of you, winter has officially arrived. Or, if you live in the Southern Hemisphere, it’s the other way round. It’s hot. The days are long.

In many places around the world there are all kinds of rituals, holidays and gatherings to celebrate the event. Which, by the way, is really only one second long.

So.

I’m giving you a break. No photography tutorial today. I’m not sure when it will return. Maybe in a couple of days. I do know what I’m going to talk about. Color temperature. Quality of light. And, how to control and enhance that. If you have any questions before I post, please let me know.

The picture. A very cold day in a park that isn’t all the close to where I live. But, it has a great running and walking path.


The dog's flower petals.
The dog’s flower petals.

More of the occasional series. What the dog saw.

This time, we didn’t go far. We took a walk this morning while the sun was low and wonderful. We had a rain storm for most of yesterday and last night. So, everything was bright and sparkly. Add that to the low light and this is what you get. Even in the shade. Kind of a glow.

Of course, it’s steamy as it can be. Between normal airborne humidity and the water vapor lifting off the ground I feel like I’m in a sauna while we walk.

Remember.

We have two real growing seasons down here. So while some of you are starting to see autumn colors and bare branches, we are seeing new blossoms. Sorry about that, he wrote with a laugh.

More rain is predicted for today.


A peaceful levee walk.
A peaceful levee walk.

Walking at dusk. Along the levee. On the Eastbank.

Peaceful. Quiet. Calming.

This is one of those “on my way to someplace else” pictures. I was leaving New Orleans, heading upriver. I forget where I was going, but one of the most relaxing ways to leave the city is along River Road. Even during rush hour, the traffic flows fairly steadily. There are only two traffic lights. When you finally travel a couple of miles outside of the city, the traffic thins and it really does feel like you are riding on a little country road. Of course, because of so much New Orleans road construction this little two lane road can get jammed up with trucks trying avoid the mess. Probably more cars than usual, too.

And, that’s it. A simple little picture.


Leading the second line.
Leading the second line.

Remember those young guys behind the burglar bars? The ones who just wanted to be outside?

Here is their great escape. Kinda. Sorta.

The New Look hit the streets about fourth or fifth in the parade. Just like their elders, they know what to do…  because they have been practicing for a long while. With their those who came before them. You know. Traditions. All of that. The good stuff.

With a little upbringing, a lot of care and a little bit of luck, they’ll grow into the next generation of the Young Men Olympian Jr. Social Aid and Pleasure Club. They’ll look after their neighborhood, just as the YMO has been doing for 130 years.

You know the rest. The picture is another of those F8 and be there things. Look at all those smart phones. I have no idea what their F stops are. Heh!


Coming Out.
Coming Out. 

Good Fellas is the only second line that appears on an overhead walkway or catwalk. The parade members come out of a place called the Eiffel Society, make a left turn when they reach street level and start walking.

The Eiffel Society is, in their own words; a club, a bar, a garden, a gallery, a catwalk and a stage. They serve drinks and food. They play a lot of music. DJ style. According to their website, it is the original cafe that was once perched on the Eiffel Tower in Paris. It was shipped on a boat in boxes and assembled from 11,062 pieces like a giant set of Legos as part of the 1984 World’s Fair. It stands 14 feet tall and is located on St. Charles Avenue only a few blocks away from our house.

I don’t think it’s like Legos. It’s more like an Erector Set, which I don’t believe is made anymore.

That’s really all I know about it. Except that it changes hands fairly frequently and while it may be sort of a local landmark, it sure looks weird. It’s out-of-place. And, time.

The only second line that uses it as a starting point is Good Fellas. That’s sort of cool although that catwalk can get jammed up pretty easily with spectators, photographers and videographers. In fact, if you get behind the second line, you’ll be stuck behind it until you work your way through the crowd at the base of the stairs. For the way that I like to work that’s like death.

The picture. I often like you to see the subject and the surrounding area. That’s what you get in this frame. Mama and her babies. And, the catwalk. The rest is pretty simple. See the picture. Take the picture. Almost no work in post production. I am testing something to replace all forms of Adobe software. So, maybe no more Photoshop. No more Bridge. No more Lightroom.

We’ll see.


Well. Mostly I like to walk. Trains. Planes. And, automobiles. They are just for getting someplace quickly. To see. To really see, you have to walk. Walking gives you just enough time to see what’s coming and to react in order to make the picture. And, you can see the details. The devil is in the details, they say.

This picture was made on the same night I made the bonfire picture. In order to get to the bonfires you have to cross the road. Yeah, yeah. I know. Why does the photographer cross the road? To get to the picture. True, dat. I don’t care about getting to the other side. I care about getting to the picture. This is a relatively quiet time on River Road. Two minutes before I pushed the button, there was a line of traffic that stretched downriver for a few blocks. Fortunately, there are local parish sheriffs and State Troopers to direct traffic.  This picture should give you an idea how close people sit to the to the main street, even though it is only a two lane road. The exposure for this is pretty easy. I try to shoot at F5.6 and let the shutter speed fall wherever it may. In that way, some motion is stopped, some is blurred and the light is fairly well-balanced.

And, that’s it for this picture. River Road

But, wait. There’s more.

I few weeks ago I reconnected to an old high school friend via Facebook. His name is Craig Loe. Among other things, he writes stories for a travel blog called tripbucket. He asked me if I would help out and discuss travel photography for all levels of photographers. I think that I surprised him with my lengthy answers so tripbucket broke my story into two parts. The first  part was published today. Words and pictures. I told him that part of my lengthy writing was due to my attempt to write to all levels of photographers. That’s very hard to do and keep it brief. Or, maybe I just felt like “talking.” Maybe you might learn a thing or two. I did. By organizing my thoughts I remembered a few things that I forgot.

Anyway, please have a look at my friend’s work, my writing and a few pictures which you may have already seen.

http-::www.tripbucket.com:news:blog:posts:38:


Okay. You know I like bricks and brickyards. So, while most photographers are taking pictures of the famous sights of Melbourne, I’m poking around the lesser known alleyways and laneways of the city. Some are relatively wide and house cafes, coffeehouses, restaurants and stores. Others are really just tiny passage ways, like this one where I waited and watched for the perfect passerby. I found one and this picture is the result.

Yes. There is a lot of post production involved in the picture. I wanted, and achieved, a lightly dreamy feel.By the way, you can go to a website called http://www.onlymelbourne.com.au to learn a lot more. You’ll even find out that Corporation Lane has been renamed to ACDC Lane after the band of the same name.