Day 365: The end of an era.

It’s hard to believe this is my last post of 2013’s Project 365. I was planning a post with the ‘Best of…’ slide show, but I then I decided against it. I’d rather just post a final picture with little fanfare and give myself a few days to reflect on the Project, choose my favorites of the year for the slide show, and finish any withdrawal symptoms I may suffer.

For now, I leave you with one last new image. Or in this case, a different version of an image I’ve already posted. Here’s the set up:

Do we remember that I had two cameras with me at the Vanderbilt Mansion?

Day 361 - C330 and Konstruktor

In the background above, you can see part of the scene I shot with the C330:

Day 363 - House on river

I also took a shot with the Konstruktor:

Day 365 - Tree on river colorSo now we have three views of those trees and the house on the river: first in digital taken with a cell phone, second in medium format taken with a massive 50-year-old TLR, and finally in 35mm taken with a novelty do-it-yourself plastic toy camera.

At the start of this project, I never would have thought I’d be making such a comparison, but there it is. Modern, then Dinosaur, then somewhere in between. How apropos!

These are some of the ideas I have to chew on over the next few days. How has this project changed my photography? Where has it led me? What have I learned, not only technically but philosophically?

While I’m chewing and digesting, I will also be wishing all of you a most wonderful start to the new year. I appreciate the company on this journey of mine, and hope you stick around to see where we go in 2014.

Happy New Year!


Day 307: The streets of New York.

Today, millions of people have descended upon the little island of Manhattan to participate in or watch the New York City marathon.

I am not one of them.

You’d have to pay me a lot of money to be in Manhattan when it is even more crowded than it usually is. I prefer the streets a bit quieter.

Day 307 - Trees

Of course, “quiet” is a relative term in New York.

Day 307 - Konstruktor Trees



Day 260: Call me Ishmael.

Every morning (or afternoon – I am an adjunct, after all) when I drive to work, I pass a red barn. It’s an old-style farm house, though it’s either been restored or built new to look old. I believe it’s a stable where people can board their horses (that’s quite common in this area), though it’s also possible that the horses I sometimes see in the yard belong to the people who live in the house farther up the hill.

The problem with this barn, however, is that it just screams for a picture to be taken of it. It’s set back from the road with a lovely yard in front and wooded hills behind it, it often has gorgeous horses grazing in the yard, and it seems to have an uncanny knack for drawing the most interesting light precisely when I’m driving past with no camera or no time to stop for a picture.

I did get a glimpse of it this past winter and it was good, but I was not satisfied. It was not “The Picture.” It just whetted my appetite and I started to think more and more about capturing this spot.

I thought I could maybe take an interesting ‘drive-by’ with a camera that is small and easily set so I could just stop and quickly take a picture out of the window before a car came up behind me. I thought of the Konstruktor.

Day 260 - Red House 1

Okay, not so much. With no ability whatsoever to set the camera for exposure, it would truly be a fluke to have gotten the exposure right.

I tried with the Olympus. I could put it in shutter-priority and infinity focus and again, just snap the shutter when I was in position.

Day 261 - Red House 2

Better, but the white whale still eluded me.

I thought I should just pull the car over and walk to a good spot, taking my time to get the shot.

On the days when I was most flexible, it would be raining. When I finally had a sunny day, there would be a line of cars behind me, making it difficult to pull over onto the non-existent shoulder. Other days I would forget and be the only driver on the road on a bright, sunny day, and suddenly, I’d come up on the barn to see fantastically long shadows and three perfectly-positioned horses.

One day, I did manage to pull over, using the space on what seemed to be a small side road that no one ever used.

Within 2 minutes of getting out of my car, the clouds thickened and took away the sun, and someone honked their horn at me so I would get the hell out of what was apparently his driveway.

It was back to the drive-by. The next attempt was more interesting, but I still want more.

Day 261 - Red House 3

I need horses, I need different angles and good light, and I need time to check focusing and exposure. And oh dear lord, the leaves are starting to change, making this barn even more in need of a picture.

This morning, the horses were out and the sun was angled in a most interesting way, hitting the first flushes of autumn color. But I was late for work.

The whale is still out there. I’m still hunting.

One day, I tell you…one day…