Word and Image

Maine

Ummm…

I see people. I watch people. It comes from observing patients for so many years. You watch them walk, how they act, and how they interact. I was there for the reflection. Walking sticks? Well, the woman could hardly walk. Ok?! Engagement photo shoot? The photographer was shooting from behind the couple and probably never saw the reflection. How? (did she not see it?) Photo-ops everywhere you look. I kept my mouth shut and did not engage (pun, anyone?). The fat lady? Not that fat lady – she found the reflection, pulled a camera out of her pink bag, and proceeded to ignore me.


Serendipity

We were turned away at Cadillac mountain. No ride to the top. There is a new toll instituted this year to limit cars in the parking lot there. The gatekeeper turned us away and bade us down the hill to a turnout for the sunset. It was extremely fortuitous. We arrived and claimed the last spot by the roadside. Soon after the two lane access road was clogged with double parked cars. Ha ha, the problem had shifted downhill. We had a ringside seat. It was chilly! I worked the scene until one minute after. That is to say, you know, when the moment passes its peak. We cleared. Someone slipped into our parking spot and we beat the crowd down the hill. I am glad we were there for the critical moment. Equipment? I would have had a better “selfie” with a flash to compensate for a dark foreground. Yeah, yeah, lazy me, no flash. The new mirrorless does not have one in the camera. We’re fine. Yeah, panorama, too? iPhone? No, I considered the moment (watching the sunset) with Colleen, held her closer, and kept the phone in my pocket.


Another day…

… another museum. There is only so much room to maneuver in a museum. I’m working on a new routine. On this day we did the classics. Sommesville bridge. Considering the numbers of cars at the Bass lighthouse (on this same road), everyone was speeding along and missing this quintessential Maine shot by the bridge. We paused to sit under the arbor. The lighthouse has a front and back side. You have to go around the back and down a steep rocky path to get the “real” view. From the speed at which cars departed the crowded parking lot, it seems most folks missed the back side. Sometimes tourism is not about the speed at which you check off another sight seen.


Thinking

Traveling is tricky. You need to strike a balance between running around and sitting around. Humor is where you find it. How about a deer hunting orange cap? Blow drying your restaurant after the rain? Lobster roll? Party colored rake? Colleen adores sitting in a used bookstore amid all the possibilities. But, the sun was newly shining after all the rain. Go! There is a need to visit all the photo ops! (I like old windows.) Or, to sit and spin. Yes, we got a new wheel. New? No, used. Gently used, this was Colleen’s drool wheel. Ok! Cherry wood! It’s gorgeous. It spins like a dream. Only if you were another spinner, could you appreciate the pleasure. It’s like driving a Porsche. Nope, I have not done that either.


Opportunity

We returned to the scene. Ordinarily, there are no second chances. The last visit was only days ago. Colleen. It was her call. I’m glad we did – return again. I was always told a bright sunny day was less than ideal for photographing. Who knows? I love the bright white contrasting against the autumn sky. Give me a few clouds. And, the monarch butterflies were out, just for me. It seems everyone else was ignoring them for the lighthouse. I worked the scene and had a grand time. It was all Colleen’s idea. She’s a genius.


Another try

Photoshop can do wonders. But, the real thing is easier, more reliable? A few posts back I was lazy and did not wait. I put in the reflection. This time around was an almost perfect day. It still required patience to let the ripples in the water settle. Nope, there is a limit to my patience. Colleen laughs. She’s a good sport about it all. She hates jumping around back and forth on the rocks. Meanwhile, tourists came and went without noticing the reflection. And, yes, this selfie required Photoshop.


Essentially

A little more time would help. As in, time to work a scene, or, to let it develop as weather changes. Nope, I am often shooting out an open car window. (We are rushing here to there…) As you might imagine, I have a lot of camera gear. I travel with a lot of gear. And, especially, if you travel by car, there is no limit to how much or how heavy. I like parsimony. I pared my gear as much as possible. Yet, I still carried too much. Essentially, I needed two cameras – a full frame mirrorless and a compact point and shoot; one maybe two interchangeable lenses. It’s a good lesson. The other stuff is not going to make or break the experience. And, when traveling, less (gear) is more. Unfortunately, I cannot say the same for antiques and craft, we have found. No complaint, though, we are still traveling. If my gear fills the space in the car, then…. no room for – say a loom? (Oh boy! This comes back to bite me a bit later.)


Cruising

You are out all day and nothing particulars stands out. Later on, you peruse the shots you took and there are a few that … well, good. I knew we were coming back on the same road… Luckily, the pictures were still there waiting. And then, you find stuff, you were not expecting. Of course. It’s not perfect but….


Hello! Hullo!

Pemaquid “calls” to Colleen. We were finally able to return. There were no expectations. It was windy and about to rain. It was perfect. The moment passed so quickly. We will return at some point again on this trip. How could we not? Pent up energy was released. A little. There was barely time to sit, between the rain drops. Next time, we will be sure to sit. Some things need time to slowly percolate through all your senses. Me? I’ll take another (better) picture. But, on this day, after long last, we were back. There is something to be said to coming back once more. I wish I could photograph emotion.


Scenes I have seen

Quintessential? Camden. It is a very picturesque town. There are shots. Perhaps I was not feeling the inspiration? Lazy? Who knows? I have been here. Have i? This is no time to be existential. Like the sunset, it is subtle in color. Is there more to say? Some days are like that. Pictures jump out or not.


Food for thought

Maine is a state in which 1% of the census population reports as African American. Here, in the middle of nowhere and with no one around, are a group holding banners decrying BLM. Ok? Where are the supporters? Where is the audience? We were randomly driving by (not another car in sight). I laud the sentiment? We later ate lunch in a restaurant where the staff was nearly all black. Hmmmm? That was remarkable. There were plenty of (non black African) customers. Life went on seamlessly. 1% African American: 99% other. It’s a free country. Go where you like? Maine?


Way back

Quintessential Maine, Somesville bridge. It’s not my best effort, but this was a long time ago and before I knew better. The first balloon festival (for me) had the searing memory of Lisa dipping her poison ivy covered arms in a bucket of ice at a soda vendor; no, not pictured here. How about a field of wildflowers they planted just for my camera? My dog Nellie, I loved that dog! One more summer image, fishing, the water was about 18 inches deep. But, you get the idea. Idyllic, childhood. It was a different time. Good. Better, that’s harder to say.


Go again

Two meanings. 1. Return on another trip.  2. Do it again.

Same, different? Ummmm, we got/experienced these places together. Luck. It was as though they just up and bit us. They say you can’t go back. This was a return trip to Maine. And, this time we visited Canada too. I would say it was about as magical as our first trip together. Little did we know there would be no return trip for a while. Covid stopped us last year. This year we are planning to return. New photo-ops. It’s never the same. It’s always (more) fun.


A few

Way back in the beginning… back in 2011, I started this blog. It was free. Free is for me! I’m not selling anything. No $ either way, in either direction. Not true, I pay a fee for extra memory (on the site) nowadays. There are ads, a few, not my doing, not mine (ads). Essentially, free. Followers, a lot of commercial WordPress sites these days, fishing for business. Followers, a few, to whom I imparted the blog address. There are few enough followers who have found me from around the world. But indeed, there have been visitors from around the world. Ah, the power of the internet! I do not seek fame. I merely share thoughts and photos. I’m better than average and less than great. I am not the best in my family but better than most. My own kids have produced 5 star pics on their iPhones! It’s not common, so, the body of my work is technically better. But, then art was never about quantity. Quality can show up in a single image. Colleen’s kids – Emma has more photography experience. But, even Jess and Ian have shown that even a blind squirrel gets a nut once in a while. Even though I take great shots, it’s just not every day. But every day, I take shots.


Nuts

I Photoshop… because, I can. Don’t you wish you could too? We have fun. It’s always about fun. And we have plenty. This the part of the collection from our Maine trip. It’s not our first time. Humor? Irreverence? Who knows? We laugh a lot. Colleen thinks I’m nuts. She’s not alone. But, she is tolerant. And, so, we laugh some more.


Someone’s watchin’

I lifted this layout right off Shutterfly. Who’s got rights? I have been told nothing disappears from the internet. But, how’d it get there? Shutterfly, it took over after Kodak folded. They send emails to me of “memories” from time past. I mostly don’t pay attention. I did, once upon a time, upload a lot of images to Kodak in order to share pictures. But, hey! Where did these come from? They are long after I uploaded anything to Kodak and definitely not on Shutterfly. I don’t use the service. It’s not transparent. I can easily see who owns Shutterfly. For sure, they did not ever receive or have permission to snag these digital images. By, the way, their periodic reminders of memories from the past are (mostly) unhappy remembrances at this point. They wouldn’t know – a smiling face is a smiling face. I’m just wondering. However. So far it’s so. What’s on the ‘net lingers forever. In this particular instance I do hope the (these) memories last forever. This one was an “extended” first date, the best I ever had.


Butt face

I hate it, when they change things. WordPress, the sponsor of this blog site has changed the format for creating and editing a post. Yay! By now everyone has had a chance to try it. I hate change. I just got used to editing and creating…. What if one had to change wives every…. Oh shit! I’m in deep shit….. Please forgive me honey, I don’t know what came over me. I’m so terribly sorry! 🙂

Butt soap – for Ginny, or Emma – there’s a side for your face and one for your ass. Don’t get mixed up? Please. (You know who you are.)


Boothbay Harbor

This home was for sale. It sits in the harbor on a bridge/walk right in the middle of everything. It’s the proverbial goldfish bowl. What comes to mind is that I may never walk around in my underwear. Colleen fell in love with it and begged… I said no. Luckily, on this occasion, I got my way. It’s not often I win. Lately, though, I don’t walk around in my underwear any more. Darn!


Dawn

2007 07 0020 Dawn valley

I tried to shoot the puffins. … as in photograph them. I made three trips. The first two were duds. I never saw a puffin. The boat to the island could not land. I chummed both times. Up and down, up and down, went the boat. Up came whatever breakfast there was. On this particular trip I was tearing across Maine at around 3:30AM to get to the boat dock. Ok, maybe a bit later. Dawn! This turns out to be the picture of the day! No puffins! I told you, I chummed. Wanna see? No? Well, then this is the sum and substance of that trip. It might not look too swell, but the work I put in to get to this pic is what makes it even more special to me. It’s never so good as when you realize later that the best picture of the day was the first.


…Next day

And on the next day…Dave asked me about whitewater rafting. Way back more than a decade ago … Jules and I were whitewater rafting in Maine. It was summer but the water was still cold. And the object of the boat driver was to dump you in the water. It was very cold. We had a great time. I relied on my database and Lightroom to locate the files. It wasn’t too painful. We all had a laugh over these memories.


Catharsis

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“Before the term existed she proclaimed we would marry and had her mother invite me to a “playdate” at age eight. We were in the same classroom 3rd to 6th grade. When I moved we never communicated again. Fifty years later, I was deleting junk emails when Elkins caught my eye in the subject. Another classmate was inviting me to a class reunion, a class I never graduated with. Colleen? Oh, yes, she’s still around, recently widowed. She responded to my email with, “I’m nosy…” Within a month it was true love. Can you say happily ever after?”

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I penned this for the New York Times – Tiny Love Stories. They didn’t publish it. Too many other submissions, mine not good enough.

 

We were classmates in third grade. Yes, many decades ago. Maine called to Colleen. Pemaquid lighthouse was the place, 2014. We returned last fall, the marriage still not complete. You can guess her longing and frustration. It was technical not reluctance on my part. We already live in a home together. Colleen chose our home in a day and I agreed from Saudi. People have said we looked “married.” I suppose we did. “Happily ever after” is not just in fairy tales.

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Love is: “never having to worry about the wind in your hair.”


Symmetry

Four years ago, we sold our apartment in Manhattan. I bought a new camera, actually a fair amount of new equipment that I had lusted after. This was followed by an extended trip to Maine. This year is redux; we travel back to Maine. I got this spiffy camera. I’m not a fan of Sony as a camera though I have owned many Sony videocams and Walkman. Four years ago, cats were theoretical. I had never met a cat I liked or who liked me. It’s been quite a transition. I’m out of Manhattan. I don’t miss it for all the troubles you have to put up with. I miss the action and the restaurants. But I eat well and don’t lack for anything to do. And it is/was time for a new phase. This one is way more peaceful. Anyway, things have a way of repeating. This one time it worked out. The road I have taken has been pretty spectacular.

Symmetry? We had another spectacular trip to Maine. Did I mention it was spectacular?


Too good to be true

So, we wandered through the animal display at the country fair. I’m not interested in chickens or rabbits. They are caged and you can’t get a good image. Whoa! Was I wrong! Thanks for dragging me in. Can you believe the images I got eyeball to eyeball with these chickens. And one even laid an egg for me. Hairy feet? Ok feathered feet? Crowing on demand? And the colors and the patterns. Oh my! I’m used to Perdue under plastic wrap. Too beautiful to eat… This was an extraordinarily wonderful unexpected find that I was dragged into seeing. Thanks!


Make your own art

I’ve been to a lot of museums and on occasion I get to feeling a little silly. So, I incorporated the experience in my Photoshop antics. It’s not too hard to do. I’m not a multilayer manipulator. I do a few things only. Otherwise my attention wanes. I like that they hung a window near a window. The obvious problem was with the interior exposure vs the outdoor brightness. It’s simple to fix with two images exposed with the final plan in mind. And then I simply cloned myself. It’s better than genetic modification.