Tuesday, August 30, 2011

When you're facing the ocean on almost any kind of day there's probably something worth photographing.  I was lucky enough to be in Florida at the beach during the onset and retreat of hurricane Irene with absolutely no ill effects from the storm.  Instead, there were the most extraordinary sky shows of brilliant clouds and roiling ocean.  Here's but one of many negatives I made last week.  Not unlike digital photographers who wisely discard huge numbers of "captures" that just don't make it, I have discarded a lot of negatives that just weren't worthy of further attention.  This scan is of one that I will print this week if I can.  I really like it.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Here is one more cityscape from a while ago. This is Park Avenue (NYC) from a 10th floor office window at 230 Park Ave (the New York Central building).  It is dwarfed by the Met Life (nee Pan Am, then Sony)  Building behind it, but has this unobstructed view looking north.  It was taken around 5:00 PM on Christmas eve of 2000.  My friend was still in her office, and she let me bring in the camera and tripod, open the window, and shoot an entire roll of this single view.  I had to experiment with exposure time, so some of the negatives are unusable, but this one is the best of the lot, and I think it was 45".  It also demonstrates the convergent verticals a rigid camera is stuck with in this situation that a view camera's movements would have "corrected". However, I think the convergent verticals help the eye down the "chute" so to speak, so I don't regret the rigid camera.

BTW, this will be the last post for a while as we're going away for a week or two. Happy rest of summer to those who get to enjoy time away from their normal routines...and to those who don't as well.

Monday, August 15, 2011

Continuing with posts of older negatives is this one. It's from the same roll as my post of August 3rd, and was made from the same rooftop.  It's interesting that photographs that may not be particularly special in themselves, are amplified in their importance merely by their being made in locations not available to everyone.  This may be one of those photographs, but I like it as an image as well as its' being a record of place, and time.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

As I wrote in my last post, summer light isn't the best for the kinds of photographs I prefer to make (and to look at for that matter).  So I've been casually reviewing negatives that have accumulated over the last decade that I've never printed or even scanned to proof .  I came across the photograph below that was taken in March of 2000, and I think I know why I didn't print it at the time. I was using pre-cut mats to mount my prints which pretty much required that I utilize the full, or nearly full negative.  Ever since I learned to cut my own, and acquired the mat cutter to do it with, I've felt totally liberated to arrange and crop the original as I choose.  This had stuff in it I couldn't exclude when I took it because of my Hudson riverbank point of view.  But I just finished printing it with judicious cropping.  This is a negative scan that very closely emulates the physical print except for the toning which is a bit different from the print due to my minimal photoshop skills.   

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Summer is too often a miserable time to make photographs around here.  The light is exceedingly brilliant and intense leaving little latitude for subtlety.  Of course, the adage has it that breakfast and dinner are the worst enemies of good outdoor photography, but they're also cherished times during this season when I have time away from work, so they're just going to have to remain in the schedule.  The quieter light at the beginning and end of the day comes too early and too late for me.  But, as summer wanes and the days get shorter with sunrise coming later,  I'll be a lot happier about getting out to photograph.  So...here's a photograph from February 22, 2000 that I've always been happy I made, but was never quite satisfied with. In the negative, the moon appears above the left side of the bridge.  I have finally decided to crop it out (it's not been cloned away, the image has been cropped), and I'm much happier with the result.  I was on the roof of a building on East 57th Street in Manhattan looking east into Queens.  It's the 59th Street (Queensboro) Bridge.