Tuesday, August 31, 2010

365 Photo Project - Day 243 (From the Archives)

Taken: August 15, 2010
Location: Healdsburg, CA

I shot this image in the same session as this shot. This is my "old man" pug Louie, who we rescued in Los Angeles about five years ago. We think he's around 10 years old and he's now completely deaf and blind in one eye. He's the dog that started my love affair with pugs and he'll always have a special place in my heart. I love him madly. Hell, everyone who meets him does too.

Monday, August 30, 2010

365 Photo Project - Day 242

Taken: August 30, 2010
Location: Healdsburg, CA

I shot this from the road where I live. My house would be off and out of frame to the right. I love the drama of the moment -- a late afternoon day on the day of or right after the first rain we got in months. No matter how much I've come to love color images and certainly no matter how easy it gets to work with them in the digital world, I'll always love the black and white shots the best. More of my Dad's influence no doubt.

Sunday, August 29, 2010

365 Photo Project - Day 241

Taken: August 29, 2010
Location: Healdsburg, CA

It's been a remarkably temperate summer, not that I'm complaining. I think it got over 90 degrees maybe a half dozen times which compared to last summer is like Christmas in July. And August. The place we rent doesn't do well in extreme temps, especially the heat. My other pug, Chamuco, will park himself on the chaise lounge outside on the porch until well after sundown. It's almost always 10 degrees or more cooler out there than it is inside so it's hard to argue with him.

This shot of Louie was taken (with my iPhone) on one of those hot, hot days. If pugs know anything, it's how to get cool. And pressing every available area of your fur-covered body against a cold wood floor is about as cool as it gets. Smart dog.

Friday, August 27, 2010

365 Photo Project - Day 239

Taken: August 27, 2010
Location: St. Helena, CA

This is one of those images I wish I'd taken with a camera other than my iPhone, but when is life ever perfect right? That's my hand in the picture. I love the composition of this shot -- a lucky break if ever there was one. But you know what they say about luck. I'll take it.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

365 Photo Project - Day 237

Taken: August 25, 2010
Location: Santa Rosa, CA

Shot this through my windshield with my iPhone 4 while I was driving through Santa Rosa.  Not the kind of thing you see every day, even up here in wine country.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

365 Photo Project - Day 230

Taken: August 18, 2010
Location: Healdsburg, CA

Another image using my twins-reflex camera. This is of my friend and her baby girl who was born in May. I shot an image of her just a few days after she was born, here and here. I love the depth of focus in this image -- and again, the rich colors. I can't quite put my finger on it but there's just something about shooting on film over digital. Maybe it's the richness and the depth. I don't know. I just like it. I got a few more rolls of film. I'll see what shakes out and post them when they come back from film developing.

Monday, August 16, 2010

365 Photo Project - Day 228

Taken: August 16, 2010
Location: Healdsburg, CA

This is a first for this project -- an image shot with a film camera. Remember them? A few days ago, I blogged about getting some camera equipment from my Dad, who has been cleaning out a lifetime worth of junk out of his garage in our summer house on Martha's Vineyard. The one diamond in the bunch was the Ricoh twin-lens reflex he got from my Mom as a wedding present in 1959. I suspected it was in near-flawless condition, as he had stored it in its original leather case and with the lens protector. Well, here's the proof. This photo was edited only for size. I did no other touch-up.

I'm way impressed by the deep color and clarity of the image -- I shot this on 400 film which accounts for the graininess of the image. But everything else, pretty much wows me.

The image itself is of our local Healdsburg Post Office, one of my most favorite spots in all of town, more for its convenience and the people who worked there than its architecture. It burned down yesterday in a fire that was initial reported as "possibly suspicious" for reasons that have never really been clearly elaborated to me. The next day, the road was roped off and I walked up to take some pictures. The guy on the left  has "ATF" on the back of his shirt and the one of the right told me he was a federal agent. He came up to chat with me because he wanted to see my camera. Turns out he restores old cameras as a hobby. Funny I write about crime for a hobby. Now that's some very nice symbiosis yes?

Sunday, August 15, 2010

365 Photo Project - Day 227

Taken: August 15, 2010
Location: Healdsburg, CA

This is by far my most favorite image of my young pug, Chamuco. I love it because it perfectly captures his personality, I'm quite proud of this shot, as I am of little Chamuco who might be the most friendly dog in the history of dogs. My vet calls him the social butterfly. That's why I always worry he'll go home with one of our guests. :-D

Saturday, August 14, 2010

365 Photo Project - Day 226

Taken: August 14, 2010
Location: Healdsburg, CA

The weapons of mass destruction. 

Friday, August 13, 2010

365 Photo Project - Day 225

Taken: August 13, 2010
Location: Healdsburg, CA

My Dad decided (likely on the strong prodding of my Mom) to clean out some of his stash of stuff. And by stuff I mean while my Dad would not make it on Hoarders, it's only because my Mom has managed to rein him in over the years. His current bout with garage-cleaning though is my gain. I've mentioned this numerous times on this blog, but it's my Dad who got me interested in photography in the first place. He let me use his cameras and play around in his darkroom. He taught me how to shoot, develop film and make prints, told me about Adams and Bourke-White, Cartier-Bresson, Westin in his favorites the Afreds: Stieglitz and Eisenstaedt, the latter a long-time resident and photo-historian of Martha's Vineyard, where we spent the summers of my youth and where my father's latest stash arrived from.

My Dad sent me two boxes of camera equipment he had saved over the years, some of which he picked up at garage sales, others he bought new and still others, like the one pictured above, were gifts. Most of the stuff is in need of repair or long since outlived its usefulness but there's a few gems in the lot -- some just because it sparks memories of my youth.

The image above is a Ricoh twin-lens reflex camera, a so-called "medium format" camera because the negatives are so large. It is the type of camera used by many of the great photographers of the 20th century and one I've been longing for since I got more serious about taking pictures.

This one is special in all sorts of ways. For one, it was a wedding gift from my Mom to my Dad -- in 1959. Equally thrilling is the camera's condition -- the outside is flawless and the glass looks very clean. I can't wait to see what photos this thing takes. I'll be sure to post them up here soon as I get out and get them developed. Might be awhile though. I am so spoiled by the instant gratification of digital photography. See if my patience holds.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

365 Photo Project - Day 222

Taken: August 10, 2010
Location: Healdsburg, CA

Late-afternoon August sunset off the porch of my house in Healdsburg. This is one image I didn't edit at all. I imported into Photoshop and played around with it but I kept going back to the original. I know it's far from perfect but I like it. 

Monday, August 9, 2010

365 photo Project - Day 221

Taken: August 9, 2010
Location: Healdsburg, CA

Taken on a lovely and temperate summer day, late in the afternoon when the trees were reflecting off the roof of my car in the golden light of the setting sun. I can feel the cool breeze just looking at this image.

Saturday, August 7, 2010

365 Photo Project - Day 219

Taken: August 7, 2010
Location: Healdsburg, CA

I have alluded to this day in previous posts, rather cryptically.  This day right here is the first day of the rest of my life. And that's no mere cliche. I'm deadly serious.

I have been slightly overweight for the last 10 years or so but worse is how I've felt. Tired, achy, lethargic, low energy and a host of aches and pains I've been attributing to getting older. I've decided to do something about that. After consulting with my doctor, I chose a detox diet -- basically a diet where I'm eliminating certain foods that can cause allergic reactions and intolerances in people. Those foods in no particular order: caffeine, dairy, glutens, nightshade vegetables, table sugar, eggs, red meats, and of course all that crap they pack into processed foods. Anybody who knows me knows that I have my own personal food groups, which are cream, butter, salt and bacon with chocolate as the dessert. I don't think I've gone two days in a row my whole life without eating one item on that list. Well, that's about to change.

Starting tomorrow, I'm changing my life. The diet I'm doing is a basic 7-day plan that you can expand to three weeks -- or with modifications for life if you want. I'm shooting for three weeks to start and I'll see how I feel. I don't expect it to be easy.  As I write this blog entry, I've gone without coffee for six days, one of my real food loves. Making and drinking my morning coffee has become a ritual with me. New me, new ritual.

We'll see how it goes and I'll try to report back to y'all how it's going.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

365 Photo Project - Day 217

Taken: August 5, 2010
Location: Healdsburg, CA

Another self-portrait plus a little bit of fooling around in Photoshop.  This photo says a lot about me -- there's my iPhone headphones I almost never go without and that little thing around my neck is my portable hard drive (for all my photos and other work) and I'm wearing my usual uniform -- t-shirt and jeans. And sunglasses. I love my sunglasses.

This photo has some other import -- like the image on this day, I'm actually leading up to a big change in my life. I'll explain in a few days. 

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

365 photo Project - Day 216 (From the Archives)

Taken: March 24, 2006
Location: Palm Springs, Ca.

One of my favorite shots ever. I took this of my brother's first child, Sylvia, on what I believe was her first birthday. They were visiting California from the east coast and I drove down to see them in Palm Springs and spent the day there. I shot this with a point-and-shoot digital camera. We were eating on the patio of a local deli and Sylvia met a dog there. They fell for each other, naturally.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

365 Photo Project - Day 215

Taken: August 3, 2010
Location: Healdsburg, Ca.

Anybody who grew up a baseball fan in New York would get the irony of this photo. That's my credit card there. The hat was a gift. Only way I'd ever buy one.

Monday, August 2, 2010

365 photo Project - Day 214 (From the Archives)

Taken: October 7, 2007
Location: Golden Gate Park, San Francisco, Ca.

Another image from the archives -- this one of the great Emmylou Harris that I shot at Hardly Strictly Bluegrass 2007, which if you haven't gone is worth checking out at least once (though be wary while it's free, it's really crowded). This year, in fact, is its 10th anniversary.  It's coming up the first week in October. I've always loved the clarity and color of this image. Knowing what I know about photo editing now, I might have cropped this one but I decided to leave it as I original edited it.

Sunday, August 1, 2010

365 Photo Project - Day 213

Taken: August 1, 2010
Location: St. Helena, Ca.

This is this baby, a beautiful little girl born July 27, 2010. I feel like she's a member of our family. She's so sweet and so small, all those things that make the most cynical among us go gaga over babies. What I love about this girl is every time I see her (about once a week so far) she has some whole new thing going, a look, an expression, some movement of hand or head or foot, just another dance step on the way to whoever she's going to be. Magic.