The guy on the right is police and the one on the left is an irate citizen protesting my photograph of the postal scooter. I didn’t know any of this. I shot the scooter thinking that it was a novel sun umbrella with which to keep shade riding around a hot city. Farid pointed out the irate citizen. Just a fraction of a second or a foot to the right or left and it would have been clearer. I was also probably about to offend the police as well. But we were moving too fast, and I had only intended to shoot the scooter. Who knew? It’s why Farid thinks that my time on earth may be limited with my camera in hand.
Sometimes I surprise myself. Farid was laughing and wondering what I was doing clicking away through his car window. The only hedge was that I was shooting at 1/250 sec and letting the ISO run. It gave me a reasonable number of sharp images. All I can say to this shot is that I was on auto-pilot and lifted the camera, shot, and forgot in the time it took to realize that there was a photo-op. Hey! I was pleasantly surprised as much as anyone else.
This is what Farid calls these joints. I suppose when I refer to delis and coffee shops, it calls ‘something’ to mind. Anyway, the sandwiches are more like gyros but they taste different in the Middle East. His brother in law told us about a new place and here we are for lunch. The décor color scheme is lime green and pink. I asked, but did not get an answer as to whether the cashier had color coordinated her dress to the restaurant’s décor.
It’s a pretty good bet that this is not Saudi Arabia… no rain (to speak of) in nine months and counting. My first morning in Beirut and it’s rainy and chilly. I almost welcome the change… just a bit too chilly. Here’s one instance in which the car window can help set the mood. I recall a photo by Grandma’s close friend Maggie Sherwood taken from a cab in a pouring rainstorm. Here’s to you ‘Mickie’ wherever you are.
It’s the side of the road in the hills of Beirut. I’m shooting through the moving car window in the passenger seat. It seems that I never really get the ideal shooting situation. But if I did, perhaps we’d never get to where we’re headed. It really was not countryside but city. So to me this is a novelty… unexpected as much as cows would be unexpected on a New York City street.
Well, street photography has become a recent specialty for me. It’s a matter of taking a photograph when you’re too shy or too wary that the subject might object. To cut the point finer, it is said that anyone in a public space is fair game. I suppose it also comes down to if you’re caught, it could be a long explanation as to why you were detained. Anyway, this can be done, just don’t be obvious in focusing and definitely don’t be obnoxious. Go wide angle, use auto focus, and you’re good to go. And the main issue, don’t get caught. Or as Desi said, “Lucy, you have some ‘splanin to do!”
I don’t know what the bundles were for. I did not have a translator. But all manner of things are available in the market. There were small shops and then there were vendors who just sat wherever there was space.
I have passed this shop for many months. It is along the back road to the hospital. They constantly close major roads so you have to hunt for a way to get to work. Since I am a captive passenger, I often idly look at the road and discover new things. The stacked air conditioner grills are clear enough. Inside are compressors and more parts. After a few months it dawned on me that the weather never changed. It was sunny everyday and the temperatures reached over 90 degrees pretty much daily. Why then? Really, why is the A/C repairman sitting in his shop without any? Don’t worry. I passed another repair shop on another street and it was the same… no A/C for the repairman.
I used to think that you can know a place within a few days. But this one took me a while to notice and figure out.
Ok, once again I have no idea what this store is about. I’ve seen it but never had an opportunity to photograph the store front. On this occasion I got the shot, but still haven’t walked up to the door and looked inside. My level of curiosity is not enough to make me ever want to eat in the place if it should be a restaurant.
Stone Town. I reference my experience in the market in Zanzibar. It was early morning and before my daughter was up and about. So I took the big Nikon and wandered the market looking for images. Here goes a swordfish to market. It just didn’t seem right that it should be dragged along the street. I suppose if you don’t eat the skin then it’s all right. It was around this time that I began to shoot from the hip at wide angle without looking into the viewfinder to compose the shot. There are times when this really does work. All these years and I’m just now finding out it’s called street photography.
I can’t say how I came up with this idea. On my last day in Dar es Salaam, I was going to take a walk. The hotel told me that I mustn’t walk alone. I had already done this at the beginning of the trip (and survived). But heeding the warning now, I hired a car and driver. I asked him to take me to the local fish market. I had had some success in the market of Stone Town and figured I could kill a few hours before my flight. It turned out to be a great time. No one seemed to mind me wandering about. I got to shoot local people and get a sense of the daily life one does not ordinarily encounter.
It’s Lent. Mardi Gras has been done big in New Orleans for many years. What I did not know is that much of the material from the costumes and floats are stored and repurposed. So there are elaborate figures, animals, masks and such that are store in large warehouses until such time as they are used or retooled. Hey, I’m glad they recycle. And they also hold parties there. It’s quite something to walk around among all the colorful work.
San Juan is the only other city that immediately jumps to mind other than this shot in New Orleans. I suppose it’s the hot weather that makes people want to paint their homes in bright colors. It’s another chance photo as I wandered the French Quarter looking for images and trying to find something uniquely interesting but not overdone.
New Orleans, I’m just walking up and down the French Quarter, looking for a shot. Here’s this young girl standing in the restaurant window, curtain hiding, and just peeking out on the street. She looked at me without shyness and I just took a couple shots. She never smiled. We just both moved on.
I had a major computer crash a week or so ago. It means I’m still sorting through old photos. So in the interim, I’ve gone back to what is available. My originals are intact but the edits and sorts are all confused. Anyway, I’ve been wondering what kind of photographer I’ve become. I am accomplished in the technical aspects. In terms of composition and style, I am all over the map. I do street photography, sports, travel, people, candids, family, and landscape. And if there’s anything to photograph, I will take a shot. Oh, and medical photography has been a must since I give talks and lectures constantly. It gets easier and easier with better point and shoot digital. I have this in mind because I was considering what to post lately and it’s not exactly predictable.
Anyway, New Orleans, I’m walking into the French Quarter. It’s a right turn off the main street and you’re in. As soon as you turn, it’s funky right away. So here is a photo montage of folks who I would be hard pressed to ever gather into a single photo. It’s an instant, camera to the eye, shoot, and walk on all in the blink of an eye. At the time I was still film/slide and so hit and run photos were a little more tricky. But this shot sits there and I always wonder what?
Last I looked Stardust is still there but it’s called Roxy. OK, maybe it’s not there. The neon looks the same garish red. Empty lots are pretty much a memory now. The police still have a big presence. Actually there are many surveillance cameras. I wonder if this is where they watch you. Cameras and video, how quaint and dated… now your smart phone does it all and plays back and has a radio.
it’s looking a bit more contemporary. There are a lot more lights and activity. And like all things it has been changing with newer stores replacing new stores. It seems that it’s not a sure thing for a business to be located right here.
There was a time when the Concord still flew. We now have one on the Hudson River nearby in the Intrepid Air Space Museum. You can visit but you can’t fly it anymore. This is a model in case you are wondering.
42nd Street looking onto the north side of the street. Some of the theater fronts were preserved. Some were destroys despite the mandate to preserve them. They just sort of fell down while renovating. Hey, it’s New York. Shit happens. There was a place or two which burned down. But I wouldn’t know how that could’ve happened either.
That clock tower is the old New York Times Building. The new one is not far away and all shiny metal and glass. The old building to walk past on the ground level is so nondescript as to be forgettable. In fact no one ever noticed the building. The old tower and clock is a different story. The new tower has a giant antenna which changes color at night.
Looking up 8th Avenue from 42nd Street, you see the pyramid topped building which is Worldwide Plaza built on the old Madison Square Garden site near 50th Street. It’s all built up now. No more empty lots. But they’ll get around to tearing down the low rise buildings for more skyscrapers. Real estate is too expensive and scarce.
This is an east view of 42nd Street. It is all developed and clean now. It’s glossy and neon bright with a Madam Tussaud and BB King’s grill. No more sleazy movie houses. No local color, just a gaggle of tourists who make you walk too slowly because you can’t pass them.
Times Square – 42nd Street and 8th Avenue by the Port Authority Bus Terminal. It was a couple of parking lots forever. The owners held out and finally sold. Two large skyscrapers are there forever now. You won’t see the Empire State Building from here any more. There’s a Sbarro or Chevy’s on the left corner. Just off the near left corner Show World Palace still exists as a porno peep show. But there’s a Duane Reade drug store directly on the corner.