This is a typical poor snapshot photograph of the family. The exposure is hardly worthy. But there is a sentimental value in its remembrance. We are gathered for dim sum at a restaurnat in Flushing. Periodically I would organize an outing. It seems we had food in common though my kids did not like the fare. My in laws, my brothers, my aunt and the assorted kids would all come. My aunt would come early to stake out a table – no reservations. We would eat ourselves silly. The restaurant is long gone. And we no longer gather in this grouping. Times change. Nostalgia is a funny thing. The photo is more valuable for the stories that have changed with the years.
We were in a museum. The names are not mentioned because it is not my intent to cause any problems. It was the musical instrument section. With all the artwork on display, this section had scant traffic. In fact we were the only ones there at the moment. Yes they have guards everywhere. Well, you can see he was not watching us while we looked around. Zzzzzzz….
This is an iconic sign in New Jersey across the Hudson River from Manhattan. It will likely remain a reminder of the past. No one seems to mind it staying. With all that is torn down and built over top, it seems that this sign will continue to be visible for the time being. In the same view you can catch the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island. So this sign shares space with other icons in the Manhattan skyline.
This is the fireplace on Long Island. But it is more or less representative of many fires I have known. The image recalls ski trips to Vermont. There was always a fireplace. It was part of the ambiance.
When I met Lisa she didn’t know the first thing about lighting a fireplace. Now I am permitted to do nothing.
And there was a fireplace in the Ventana Inn where we stayed just before Jules was born. I recall fires cheerfully burning at the Egremont Inn in the Berkshires. The kids raked leaves that weekend.
Warm cheery meant cold windy outside. Perhaps with snow or not – there were so many fires I have known. All are pretty uniformly associated with nice memories. Friends and family were usually in the picture. I recall a last ski trip that Jules and I made to Vermont. We skied and had a fireplace to ourselves. That I recall is the last fire we made together. Yes, I can recall many a fire with many a good memory to go with them.
This was my neighborhood for a long time. It is Manhattan. Charlie and I were returning from Rhinebeck. Ordinarily I would be handling the controls. But this time I was the photographer. I still have my nose pressed to the window of a passenger jet whenever I pass over NYC. But this one time we were over Manhattan and I had a perfect view.
I admit to three fantasies. Flying, diving, and jumping from an airplane with a parachute. The third is not an option any longer. I have finally decided to act my age and will pass. However both my kids jumped from an airplane in a tandem jump in different countries on different hemispheres within a week of one another unbeknownst that the other was doing it. Does the apple fall far…?
My dog Nellie was always anxious whenever anyone was out. She would sit by the door just dozing. And the moment there was noise in the driveway, her head would raise and she would perk up to see if the missing member of our family was home yet. Somehow it was easier when Nellie worried. She did enough worrying for both of us.
And this is the screen saver on my phone. My kids were unhappy when I told them I loved my dog more than them. I was kidding of course. Nellie had a knack for blinking whenever the flash fired. It was quite a trick. But she could do it consistently. How the heck do you distract a dog?
The pilots at the Rhinebeck air show are very experienced. Some, as in this case, are flying their own planes. The easy part is the flying. The interesting moments occur upon take off and landing. As I said the airfield is by no means smooth. So it requires a bit of skill and concentration to return safely. From a certain viewpoint it seems the planes are about to crash. But so far so good.
I love the googles. This old biplane did not go more than a few feet off the ground. It was too delicate to fly. So every week or so someone took the plane, taxied to one end of the field and flew a few feet off the ground for about ten seconds. It felt like Kittyhawk.
There was a point when David took up the sport to test his skill. He could ski pretty well. He wanted to snowboard but his mother required him to don a helmet. So he opted to skateboard. She did not know he needed a helmet for this too. I have to admit that David got the hang of it and could do some nice tricks. Basic things, but he was skilled enough for me to be impressed. And of course I was around to get some images. Look ma, no feet (on the board).
Traditions. There are some I remember. Lisa could make a German chocolate cake better than any other I have had. Scratch. Yup. She made this from scratch. Even the icing was made from scratch. It was as good to eat as to photograph. The candles mean that this was a special order for someone’s birthday.
In order to maintain authenticity the biplane show at Rhinebeck used a grass field. It was sort of flat. At one end there was a nasty dip. And there was an uphill. From the other perspective it was a downhill made to help you gain takeoff speed. All in all it was not so even and a challenge to takeoff and land. I am told there have been accidents. But in all my visits there were only a few close calls.
I did a lot of container gardening for a while. This is a small sample in mid summer bloom. There were many plants and a riot of color. Different flowers and crowd them together, I was told. The metallic figure front and center was a gift from Lila to our garden. When we moved a few months ago it was left behind as a gift to the new owners. It was a few years since I have gardened and the most recent planting was drab. But once upon a time there were lots of plants and color. And it was as though a private backyard was there in Manhattan.
This was a hand held shot. With fog I am not sure a tripod would have added much more detail. Digital is so forgiving. You can get a shot at night with the ISO freely adjusted. Noise starts to become an issue. There is more fuzziness. But if you are not too nuts the fuzziness works. This shot would not have been easy with film. Here the immediate feedback allows for adjustments. That is a big plus and increases the chance your image will be satisfactory
Color, pattern, and detail – all are important to making this image. it is not commonly grown in NYC. I found it in a nursery and grew it in a container garden on the deck. Then I moved in for a graphic macro shot. Since I first saw this flower in the nursery, I see it quite commonly. They were in abundance in California when I visited last year. It seems I am not the only one who likes different.
I had this spiffy new Nikon D70 and I was experimenting with images and lighting. I was using natural light and flash. Anyone who wandered into my path got in on the experimenting. This was bounce flash. It has even lighting and there are catch lights in the eyes.
Once I mastered the basics I tried to get some family group shots.
This young gal in gingham is a teacher who volunteers and helped organize the airshow. This much I remember. I regret not having spoken to her more. Sometimes you see someone and later wonder why or how their life turned out. It has happened to me on occasion.
The gingham dress is presumed period costuming. One of the bright ideas was to allow the audience to participate. So there were period costumes available and you got to parade for the rest of the crowd.
When we were going to Rhinebeck and Charlie was giving helicopter rides, he cooked up the idea that we should also wear something more in the spirit of the place. He got me some suspenders. Yup. I looked pretty period.
He’s a handsome devil. I wore the stuff because he was my ride home. I didn’t want to walk.
It’s upstate New York and there is a grass airfield where on the weekends there is an airshow of old biplanes. I had the good fortune to befriend Charlie who flew a Bell 47 helicopter. So here we are hovering over the field in preparation to land and see the show. Nice entrance.
The grass field is just that. It is not paved. To make matters worse, the biplane are all pretty delicate. But in the interest of authenticity it was an unpaved ungraded field. At least the grass was short. But the landings were ever an adventure.
It’s upstate New York and on the weekends there is an airshow of old biplanes. I had the good fortune to befriend Charlie who flew a Bell 47 helicopter. So here we are hovering over the field in preparation to land and see the show. Nice entrance. Well, truth be told Charlie i hoovering and I am taking the shot because he moved the helicopter into position to be offering rides. I was his assistant. I told the patrons to keep their head low or risk a messy haircut. Everyone did as they were told. Imagine that!
It’s another year gone by and it’s John’s birthday. He had the fortune to be born near to Christmas. My aunt Fu Ching would always be able to say something nice about anything that happened in life. To me it was always like you have to wait so long after Christmas feeling like you were cheated that the days are so close together. No matter what, it is nice to remember and say happy birthday.
This image of David was done soon after I received a Canon G3. It was a camera that is now in its G16 model and still a big seller. The salesman sold it to Lisa and told her I would love it. A simpler point and shoot would not work for me as well as this camera. He was right and Lisa gave me the start into my journey using digital cameras. The Nikon D70 was not released for about another year. Meanwhile the G3 got a lot of use as I began to transition over to digital.
Jules was critical and always seemed to be able to differentiate between my slides and digital images. I shot film and digital for Amy, Susan’s daughter’s wedding. Jules and Lisa used the G3 when they traveled in Italy. And I discovered that shooting in the dark at a school play was easy when the ISO could adjust on the fly. Yes, it was a good foray into digital using the G3.
In the interest of historical images this was taken about ten years ago. Gee time flies and you look different in a blink. It’s a nice technical image with the main subject off to the side. And there to the right is my dog Nellie looking out the door. More on that later. The point of this post is about the fact that this was taken shortly after I received this spiffy new digital camera. It was the beginning of the end of film for me.
Jules and Dave like to mug. There is a rule, which I realize looking back. Do not include too many girlfriend shots in the pictures you take. I have heard of families asking to Photoshop eliminate a spouse after the divorce. David’s graduation – it was my first serious digital Nikon D70. I mean it was about one week’s test shots after I received the camera that I just went ahead and shot his graduation. And there were plenty of pictures of the girl friend included in the day. She broke his heart later. He doesn’t speak of her and doesn’t want to see her. So I am sure he needs no photo reminders. One of the things the kids would do is make faces in protest of all the images I shoot. It was not too bad when film cost. But with digital there is really no limit. And I am free with my finger on the shutter. So I get faces a lot more now.
This was taken before I heard the term. It was back around 2003 and I attended a track meet at Hamilton College. Jules was still a runner. I drove up and stayed nearby. We had dinner and did the usual father daughter bonding. I don’t remember if she won her race. The point was to be there to show her my interest. Hey! It’s what fathers do. And I also point out this was a few years before yesterday’s engagement post.
Back in 2011 I made my way downtown to the spot where the Macy’s Thanksgiving Parade turns on 34th Street. There you get a view of the balloons. These helium filled giants are the stars of the parade. And it was still very crowded as lots of other people had the same idea. I was jostled but held my ground and got some very nice shots. Yes this is a special New York style Thanksgiving.