Weekly Photo Challenge: On Top

Header Photo: Photo of Los Angeles taken from an airplane, 2010

Following are photos of L.A. Freeways.

Hollywood Freeway, Los Angeles, 2010

Hollywood Freeway, Los Angeles. Photo taken from the Hollywood Hills, 2010.  Upper right is Hollywood.

San Diego Freeway

San Diego Freeway, Los Angeles. The area between West Los Angeles and the Valley.   Photo taken from the Getty Center in 2010

Photo of a few of the freeways in L.A. taken from a plane, 2010.

Photo of a few of the freeways in L.A. taken from a plane, 2010.

 

Weekly Photo Challenge: Monument

I’m not sure if the Statue of Liberty would be considered a monument. It’s like a monument to freedom.  There is like a fine line between a monument and a statue.  Photo taken from the Staten Island Ferry as we were passing on the way into Manhattan.

Staten Island Ferry

 

Grants Tomb

Grants Tomb National Memorial--W 122nd St & Riverside Dr, New York, NY 10027.  The final resting place of Ulysses S. Grant (1822–1885), the 18th President of the United States.

 

Rainy Day Memories of my San Francisco Years

May the sun bring you new energy by day, may the moon softly restore you by night, may the rain wash away your worries, may the breeze blow new strength into your being, may you walk gently through the world and know it’s beauty all the days of your life.

Apache blessing

It’s been raining for 3 days in New York City: for me, a drag. The rain, not to mention ennui, has brought back to me the memory of a particular day in 1980.

After spending Christmas with my Mother in L.A.,  I had just returned to San Francisco, with so much relief that I can still feel inside me that emotion I felt on that day. Back home in North Beach, the first thing I wanted to do, which is what I mostly always did on my days off from work, was go out on the Bay and take photos, my favorite activity at the time.  Afterwards I often indulged myself at a great San Francisco restaurant.

I was on the Aquatic Park Pier (one of my favorite places to take photos from) when a man, with an expensive camera in his hand, said to me, in passing, and with disparagement, that it was too cloudy and dim to take photos. I thought that was exactly the right time to take photos.  That was why I was there.  I thought the inclement weather would make for some dramatic photos.

SFBayB&W

That’s the Golden Gate Bridge in case you didn’t recognize it.

This was a photo I took on that day during the last week of 1980 of San Francisco Bay.  I loved going to the Harvey Milk Rec Center where they had a facility where anyone could go and print photos (B&W only) for a very small fee.  For five years I printed there, a minimum of once a week. I often printed on very heavy textured paper, because I liked the look, as I did in the above photo. Especially, in the sky, you can see the texture of the paper.  A version of this photo which I printed on regular glossy photo paper got published in a local San Francisco magazine.

Later, I colored this photo with Marshall’s photo tints. When I printed on such heavy textured paper, it made hand coloring so much easier, and more effective. (the heavy, matte, textured paper is so absorbent) . It looks more painterly than photographic.  Maybe I liked the painterly look so much, because I really wanted to paint.  Now, I prefer painting to doing photography.  Photography never gave me a feeling of complete artistic fulfillment, although it provided a little, and hand-tinting added a little more.

San Francisco Bay (1980) hand tinted.

San Francisco Bay (1980) hand tinted.

During the first half of the 20th Century, and before color photography, hand-tinting photos was popular, but now hardly anyone does it, and it looks antiquated. However, I think it’s really fun to do and I like the look.  I also learned retouching, which was an easy way for me to correct my photographic problems like parts too light, or not contrasty enough.  Now, one can correct those problems on the computer.

If you are interested in hand-tinting photos, on another blog of mine, I did a post on how to hand-tint black and white photos that you might be interested in visiting. This post also shows a few other hand-tinted photos of San Francisco I made while living there.

meWindowSF

This is a self-portrait of myself (actually, using color film) that I made around that same time. I worked then as a secretary at an architectural firm (MBT Associates) in San Francisco that had lovely, artistic-looking interiors.  I especially liked their large windows, as you can see in this photo, and the picturesque views out the windows of Chinatown.  I used to go there to take photos on the weekends.  In 1980, we had Wang word processors that I enjoyed writing with, after having used the old-fashioned typewriter for years.

Flash Mob: Beethoven’s ‘Ode to Joy’ Takes Over Ukraine Market

This was so beautiful it brought tears to my eyes.  A flash mob consisting of Members of the Odessa Philharmonic and Opera Chorus at Privoz Fish Market in Odessa perform Beethoven’s ‘Ode to Joy’.  I can’t stop watching it.  On Youtube.  It starts slow and builds to a magnificent last minute.  When I first found it this morning it had 16,000+ hits and then in early evening it was up to 20,000+ hits.

Weekly Photo Challenge: Reflections

The following are photos of egrets that I took in Staten Island, New York, where I live.

egret3

Photo taken at lake at Snug Harbor

egret2

Same guy as in first photo,  but now he is flying away from previous pose.

egretwp

Photo taken at Willowbrook Park 2012

Snowy Owls Hit The Big Apple

It seems, the Snowy Owl has heard that if you can make it here you can make it anywhere. This winter, the Snowy Owl invaded the lower 48 and my home town of New York City.

Photos below are from the Audubon Newsletter that I just received in my inbox.  It seems that the great invasion of the Snowy Owl into the United States is giving lots of impetus for scientists to study them, something they haven’t done much of before.  [All photos are by Francois Portmann for Audubon]

 A Snowy Owl visits Queens, New York. (Photo by Francois Portmann)


A Snowy Owl visits Queens, New York.

owl_mg_w1

An owl hunting in the swale at Breezy Point, New York, with New York skyline in the background.

This image was taken in in Arverne in the Rockaways, New York.


This image was taken in in Arverne in the Rockaways, New York.

This owl alights at Breezy Point, with the Manhattan skyline lit by the sunset glow in the background.

This owl alights at Breezy Point, with the Manhattan skyline lit by the sunset glow in the background.

"This owl spent the day in the piping plovers nesting ground at Arverne Beach, New York. Well hidden in the dried stalks and grass, people walked by on the boardwalk and the water's edge, completely unaware."..From Audubon Newletter

“This owl spent the day in the piping plovers nesting ground at Arverne Beach, New York. Well hidden in the dried stalks and grass, people walked by on the boardwalk and the water’s edge, completely unaware.”..From Audubon Newletter

If you liked this post, you might enjoy my two previous posts on The Snowy Owl
Followup: The Snowy Owl Being Saved at JFK Airport,” and “The Snowy Owl Being Saved at JFK Airport.”