Light through the window.

M

ore changes. I knew that I wanted to design some kind of gallery. I’ve done it in the past. Good luck with that. Now the gallery template is divided by columns so the images are divided into long thin columns. A casual viewer wouldn’t know what they were seeing unless they they opened each picture.

I suppose that’s one way to get you to spend more time on the page, but it seems kind of funky to me. And, not in a good way.

Anyway.

You can’t keep a good man down, they say. I suppose who they is talking about. Good man, indeed.

Being stuck inside the house has pushed me to look at things a little differently.

T

his is about light. The key component of any photograph.

This just may be a little more focused on light than normal since it is light that makes thee three pictures.

I saw the pictures. Or, they saw me. I pressed the button and that was it.

Editing was simple. Darken the images and make them a little contrasty.

Window blinds at night.

The first thing I noticed was how the blinds carried the outdoor color. I decided that I’d better photograph it. So, I did.

The next thing you know, I was playing with the files and this image is what came of it. I think it’s sort of pretty. It inspired me to make pictures of other things that I might not normally think about photographing. The two pictures, one above and one below came from looking out the window, as the sun was dropping on the horizon line.

I like them. I hope you do too. Who knows what I’ll see next.

No widows, no waiting.

In case you missed a few…

The Journey


F all really came today. Cool winds. Cool temperature. No air conditioning. Windows wide open. No apparent humidity. People celebrating. I’m not sure about the last statement. People celebrating. That may be taking it a little too far. Let’s just say people are happy. I’m happy. That’s why I’m late. I went and stayed outside. […]

Why Would You Wait?


A brand new picture. Imagine that. I went for a walk when the light was right and I started having fun. I just kept making pictures until I was finished, which took a while. I think that I wanted to take the long way home as they say. The funny thing was that the more […]

Anyway The Wind Blows


T ransitions between dark and light, the end of the day and daylight is what I look for. Sometimes I’ll wait for that time rather than burn myself out shooting daylight pictures which I’ll never even look at after the fact. It’s the light. It always the light. For me transitional light is the best […]


Reflections.

“Thank you, my love.”

That’s what the female FEDEX driver said after I signed for the Leica. Don’t get excited. It’s a southern thing. It’s a nice thing. A good way to treat each other when we interact.

Anyway.

I had the days wrong. Today is Leica test day. A good day too. The light is stunning, once again. It bounces around from lightly overcast with white puffy clouds hiding the sun, to changing the light to bright and contrasty. Wowie-zowie.

I have an idea that I’m going to wander around the Quarter. It’s a good place to work during the day. It’s very different from the usual night views. For one thing, there are very few tourists. All locals. Doing their jobs. Getting ready for the night. And, tourist dollars.

The picture. I’ve been eyeing this window for a while. It takes bright, contrasty, low light to make it work. Even with that, you have to be careful of the window frame since you can’t get an angle that prevents keystoning. Rather than fight it, I just photographed it knowing I would crop it in editing.

I thought that I wanted it bright and colorful. But, after testing different approaches, I liked this version best. Almost no color. All monochrome.

Enjoy.

I’m off to Disneyland. Er, the French Quarter.

But, first I have to figure out this camera.


Inside out.

What do you think?

Everywhere. They are everywhere. Pictures.

I made this picture when I went to the hospital. There. That got your attention. No worries. My doctor is based there. I went there for a “wellness” visit.

I was waiting for the elevator and looked out the window. It was storming out there. Wind. Rain. The temperature dropping. By 30 degrees in about six hours. Finally. Some cold weather. Apparently, it’s here to stay.

So.

The picture. I did what I always do. I made a picture. That’s what I meant earlier. Pictures are everywhere. You just have to see them.

Now. THAT takes some practice. Today. Tomorrow. The next day.

Try it.

For thirty days.

You’ll learn something. About making pictures. About yourself.


Faces in windows.

Walking is better than driving. Because you see stuff like this.

I saw this in a window. In the French Quarter.  You know how some stores, usually clothing stores, put mannequins in the window. Well, this is an art gallery’s version of that. If you look close enough you can see framed photographs hanging on the wall. They are for sale. This mask isn’t. Unless you want to spend really big bucks.

That’s it for today.

I am planning on going to the big Halloween parade called the Krewe of Boo. It’s tonight. A little earlier than usual. The route has been changed, which probably has something to do with it.

I’m torn. Usually I photograph parades from the start. There are a lot of pictures to be found there.

I was thinking.

There is a really nice view from the gun emplacement near the river that puts the parade in the foreground, Jackson Square and St. Louis Cathedral in the background. But, it’s one picture. Once I commit to one or the other that’s it. Because of the huge crowd movement is almost impossible unless you are leaving. I guess I’ll flip a mental coin and decide while I’m on my way.

What would you do? Go for the potential of a lot of pictures? Or, just the one scene setter?


Falling through the skylights.

A kind of little picture. That grew bigger.

This one is all on me. I have no idea why I didn’t see this before. I guess that I should look up more often. When you walk with dogs, you look down a lot. You don’t want them accidentally tripping you up. Especially on our streets which often looks like Berlin 1946. Even the sidewalk in front of the house is a mess. Up. Down. Cracked. Broken. Roots pushing through. Grass peeking through.

Should I repair it or not? I would. But, I can’t. It’s a funny thing. If we had a sidewalk with a strip of grass growing on the street side, the grass would be mine. The sidewalk is the city’s. If I repair it on my own, I’m guilty of something. Likely, working without a permit since I wouldn’t be issued one anyway.

It’s so much fun living in an ancient city that is built on a swamp. Okay, okay. My neighborhood wasn’t so swampy. It’s on high ground. It’s six feet above sea level, which makes it high ground compared to 80% of the city. But, the soil still shifts and sinks. It’s sort of like quick sand. Oh well. Now that New Orleans is rapidly gentrifying, our house is worth a lot more than we paid for it only four years ago. If we move, we win. Or, lose. Something like that.

Anyway.

I made this picture in the shop/storage space/junk drop/tool shed/refuge. It’s also a sort of pass through between one out building and the next. When the dogs and I finish our walks we generally walk through this room. I looked up. Yes. I did have to do some work in post production. The contrast between extreme highlights and deep shadows was just too much. So, I messed with it some and darkened the shadows to emphasize the highlights.

Have fun.

Oh, funny thing. When I ran this through spell check it wanted to turn gentrifying into petrifying. That’s about that same thing. Heh!


Seasons Greetings.
Seasons Greetings.

Holiday season.

These are my last two pictures of the 2016 holiday season. I didn’t make a lot of “big” Christmas pictures this year. I didn’t feel like it. As we all know, the passing year was a rough one.  2016 was hard on everybody. I guess it shows. Especially, since I believe all art is autobiographical.

Don’t get me wrong. I had a fine Christmas. It’s not about the holiday. It’s about all that preceded it. And, what many fear will come. Storyteller isn’t a political blog, but the world is changing and not in a good way. Two political events happened this year that nobody believed could happen. And, a never-ending war in the Middle East blossomed into one of the largest humanitarian crises the world has ever seen. Innocent people were killed. Ancient cities destroyed.

Of course, there were the passings. People left the planet. Ancestors is what we call them in New Orleans. We mourn. Then we celebrate their lives. So many artists — in the form of musicians — died in 2016.

Everybody matters.

But, some of those who left inspired all of us to do better, to create on a higher level, no matter our art. The cycle of mourning and celebration never seemed to end this year. We all need a break.

Santa and me.
Santa and Me.

So.

2017.

I have no idea. I don’t know what’s coming. As they say, it’s above my pay grade. Well above my pay grade. But, I do know that I have to shake this off and move beyond it. To be better. To create at another level. I can’t speak for any of you. You all know what you have to do. Or, not do.

The pictures. I took them walking around. There is a sense of isolation in both of them. You know. That, “all art is autobiographical” thing. Rearing its ugly head. If you look closely at “Santa and Me,” you can see a dog leash on the bottom right of the picture. Guess who was with me? Yep. The dog. The one who sees things. Who helps me take pictures.


Red reflections in Chinatown.
Red reflections in Chinatown.

Finally. I got loose. They can’t catch me.

I headed straight to Chinatown. In San Francisco. I took pictures. I ate. I took some more pictures. I ate again. In a moment of kindness I bought a lot of take away food for the others. Not that they deserved it. Sheesh.

The pictures. I took a lot of them. You know that feeling of freedom. Remember The Beatles movie, “A Hard Day’s Night?” Remember when they broke out and were running around in the field? Like that.

I just saw things. I just photographed everything. You’ll see more of them. The things. But, I just had to organize them in some way. This group is called “reflections.” There’s a couple of other collections. I tried not to be precious about them. You might not see them right away. I have some Halloween things to show you.

Reflecting on food.
Reflecting on food.

Hmmmmm.
Hmmmmm.


And, so it starts. Halloween.
And, so it starts. Halloween.

It almost got away from me.

Between what has become a busy schedule, my own recovery from a slight repair and no real fall weather to speak of, the spooky season almost got away from me. Luckily, a bunch of little people reminded me. Toddlers. You know?

So, here we go.

Spooky. Scary. New Orleans for Halloween. For me, one of the best holidays in New Orleans. Christmas is the other one. Mardi Gras comes in third. Or tied.

Our fall season this year. Very strange. Only a couple of days when the high temperature dropped below 80 degrees. The leaves didn’t turn red. Or gold. Today, they just fell off the trees. Brown. Dead. Into the pool. It looks like a swamp.

The picture. Just something I saw. And, reworked in post production. No. Not my house. Just a place that I stumbled on. One more thing. Halloween posts are on and off this week. Stay tuned. Check out the following week leading up to the big night.

 


Golden queen in the French Quarter.
Golden queen in the French Quarter.

Gold in The French Quarter.

I was inspired by something a friend of mine published yesterday on his blog. Let’s call him Robert. Because that’s his name. Heh! He photographed something in some windows in the Quarter. He put his camera lens flat on the glass as I once suggested. He liked the results so he mentioned me in his post. That got me thinking of this picture. The one that you are looking at. I shot it through a window.

First. For the record. I am not competitive. Except with myself. He just got me thinking about this picture which I haven’t shared with you. It’s one of those kinds of pictures that just sort of fell by the way side.

The picture. I guess that’s the tip for the day. It’s very, very old school. If you are photographing through a glass window, put your lens directly on the glass. It may take some juggling around to actually be able to frame the picture that you want to take. But once you do, you’ll have no glare or reflections and the window will act like a brace or tripod. You can work in the dark. Like I do.