Weekly Photo Challenge: Perspective

These are two photos (below and header photo) that I took in Paris in 1983. I was looking at the boats parked along the Seine from the perspective of through the tunnel.  My idea was to use the tunnel like a frame for the boats–like.  I don’t know who the heads are of.  If anyone knows, please inform.

A hand-tinted black and white photo.   It was a rainy day which is why the pavement looks wet.

Weekly Photo Challenge: Future Tense

No work or love will flourish out of guilt, fear, or hollowness of heart, just as no valid plans for the future can be made by those who have no capacity for living now…Alan Watts


“Cloudscape” I took this photo from a plane while flying to Los Angeles. We were above the clouds. It looks as though the clouds form a mountain. On a plane, one is mostly only thinking about the future and what will happen when the plane lands.


Photo:  My plane approaching Los Angeles International Airport (LAX).  On a plane, time feels suspended until one is on the ground again and one’s life can continue (unless one has a cell phone).  When one is about to land, as in above photo, all one is doing is waiting to get off the airplane so that they can continue with their life.

Weekly Photo Challenge: Beyond

Crossing the English Channel on a ship from Calais, France to Folkstone in the UK (1983).  This Black-&-white photo was hand-tinted, something I did back then with most of my black-&-white photos after I printed them on heavy, textured paper, as you can see if you look closely.  In reality, it looked pretty much like this only darker, I think.  At the time, I was sitting in a deck chair on a ship, looking north, sipping a Black Russian, my favorite cocktail at that period of my life. I thought how lucky I was to be experiencing such clear-cut, dramatic lighting and tried to make the most of it with my camera. I also made a copy of this photo with a pink sky, which I want to try to find.

The Staten Island Ferry

Because I live in Staten Island, the Staten Island Ferry plays a big role in my life. The ferry takes thousands of passengers a day to and from Manhattan from Staten Island. From Staten Island it’s possible to take an Express Bus into Manhattan; however, the cost of the bus into Manhattan is $5.50, while the Ferry is free, besides many people enjoy the ride.

Traveling on the Ferry after dark gives a person a beautiful view of the city lights.

In the 1970’s when I first came to New York, riding the ferry was one of the first things I did.  Back then I think it cost $.25.  They kept changing the price of it until they gave up and made it free.  However, that may change again.

Kermit Rides the Ferry from Staten Island to Manhattan, 3-1/2 miles.

In movies I’ve seen, they make out the ferry as being very cold, but it isn’t.  It’s cool in the summer when all of the rest of the city is roasting, and in the winter it’s heated.  It also has a snack bar on board where you can get coffee and/or beer, or something more solid.  There are old ferries and newer ones.  The newest ones have four floors with an elevator to take you up and down.  I  like to ride on the top floor because it’s less crowded and I like the view from up there.

The Staten Island Ferry on its trip passes by the Statue of Liberty, offering the best view one can get of it for free. [photo by me (cerca 1995) (hand tinted)]

Before 9/11, the ferries carried cars to and from Staten Island, but after 9/11 they stopped doing that for security reasons. Driving from Manhattan to Staten Island, without taking the ferry, is rather an ordeal. One has to go through the Battery Tunnel and then around the Brooklyn shoreline to the Verazanno Narrows Bridge. Leaving Manhattan there are no bridge or tunnel fees, but coming into Manhattan, it will cost you about $15.00 in fees.

An Architectural Cruise up the Hudson River

Last night through an organization called Open House New York, I took an architectural tour up the Hudson River on a beautiful cruise ship called the Hornblower.  The ship left from Pier 40, which is on the Hudson at Houston Street, then travels up the Hudson past Morningside Heights to almost the George Washington Bridge, then turns around and returns to Pier 40.  On the way back, the ship’s guide points out  and gives lots of history concerning the important buildings on the New Jersey side of the river.

Lower Manhattan with Unfinished New World Trade Center Building

In my video the narration didn’t come through good so I eliminated it, but I still hope someone might enjoy it.  Below are a few photos I took.  You might notice that I have a thing for sailboats.  It’s just that I think that sailboats around Manhattan add so much to the overall landscape.

This is the Morningside Heights area of New York City as seen from the  Hudson River.  Morningside Heights is located above the Upper Wise side.  These institutions reside in the Morningside Heights area:  Columbia University,  Barnard College, the Manhattan School of MusicBank Street College of Education, “Grant’s Tomb“, the Cathedral of Saint John the Divine,  Riverside ChurchUnion Theological SeminaryJewish Theological Seminary of AmericaInterchurch Center and St. Luke’s Hospital.  The trees are Riverside Park.
Grant’s Tomb (left) and The Riverside Church in Riverside Heights in the borough of Manhattan

The Riverside Church is an interdenominational American Baptist and United Church of Christ church famous for its elaborate Neo-Gothic architecture and its history of social justice. John D. Rockefeller built the church with his own money for Harry Emerson Fosdick (May 24, 1878 – October 5, 1969), a famous 20th-century Baptist Minister, to preach in, because Rockefeller was such an admirer of his.

Top of Empire State Building
From rear of cruise ship going up the Hudson river.  Manhattan on the left and New Jersey on the right.  Between the two is where the Hudson meets the Atlantic Ocean.

After the cruise, I took the Staten Island Ferry back home to Staten Island.  It’s very hard to take a night photo with a hand-held camera, without it turning out blurry, from a moving boat . I think the only reason this photo came out this clear was because the boat was moving straight back from the shore and not horizontally to it.  Also, I balanced my camera on the boat’s railing.  My camera is an upper-end point-and-shoot (Nikon Coolpix P-100).

Weekly Photo Challenge: Friendship

B&W Photo hand-tinted (1983)

 I was sitting alone on a bench in the Tuileries Gardens in Paris when these children approached–posed as in photo–and said “Take our Picture.”  I had to snap it real fast, because they didn’t want to wait.  It was the best photo I took the whole time I was in Paris

Two Friends at the Blessing of the Animals Ceremony at Christ Church in Manhattan 2011

I Love Paris

I just got through watching the movie “Midnight in Paris.”  I  thought the best thing about it were the Paris scenes. I can’t see what was so great about the screenplay to win an Academy Award or even be nominated for one.  I thought that the Rachel McAdams character and her parents were painted too much like caricatures.  You know from the first time you see the young couple together that they are so mismatched that they will end up separating and then the viewer just waits through the whole movie for him to come to his senses about his relationship with the girl.  The film has no plot surprises, but, like all of Allen’s films, it has that certain charm.  In the whole movie, I only found one slightly interesting conversation.  That was the one where Gil talks about living in one’s own time when he is visiting in La Belle Epoch.  I fast-forwarded through some of the movie because I was so bored.

However, watching this movie made me start thinking about my own Paris experience.  I spent the last week of 1982, alone, walking around Paris with my camera. It was one of the loveliest weeks of my life.   I loved Paris so much, I couldn’t wait to go back again, but I never made it.  Now I really want to try to visit again.  Back then I had a Nikon FM camera and took photos mostly in black and white which I often hand-tinted.

The Boat on the Seine
Aux Deux Magots Cafe, 6, pl St-Germain-des-Pres (hand-tinted) where I ate breakfast on my first day in Paris.
Children I encountered in the Tuilleries Gardens (b&w photo Nikon Fm 1983)
On the Left Bank of the Seine (hand-colored)
Dogs by the Seine being left off the boat to exercise
Looking under Paris Bridge. Hand colored with watercolor pencils.
Self-Portrait--in my room at the Hotel Bonaparte (December, 1982)