Friday, April 25, 2014

Women On The Move

I'm always drawn to photographing women. Tall, short, wide, narrow, dark, blonde, young, old .... doesn't matter. Women have a sense of consciousness about themselves that's much stronger than men. I sense it, I'm attracted to it.

Two shots of women on the move, going someplace to do something:

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

A Few Choice Words

I've been looking at a lot of photographs lately (not my own) especially the works of Garry Winogrand and Robert Frank. I have to add them to my pantheon of all-time favorite photographers, which until recently was just W. Eugene Smith. The Garry Winogrand retrospective show, that began in San Francisco and is currently in Washington DC,  will be coming to the Metropolitan Museum in June.

I look at quite a few photo blogs, Facebook, and Google+ every day with the hope that I'll find something that grabs my insides - something from which I can steal an idea, or at least give a 'like' or +1. It doesn't happen often.

The best way to see work of the masters is to view the actual prints either in a gallery, museum, or on your wall. The second best way is in well produced photography books. It's probably least effective to see photographic work on a computer screen. I'm sure many would disagree with me, but I came of age working in a wet darkroom producing silver gelatin prints. Although I no longer make them, opting for pigment inkjet prints, I still feel the best way to view an image is as an actual print. I make a selection of maybe twenty of my recent favorites, lay them out on the floor, and slowly thumb through a book of Winogrand or Frank images. That helps me to understand what I have, what they have, and for what I need to aim. For right now I'm wrestling to get a handle on using a super wide angle lens. I love to work with them because they allow me to get in really close and still get a full scene. Lately I've been shooting with the Fuji 10-24mm f4 zoom, mostly at it's widest setting. When I'm looking through the viewfinder and framing shots as I walk, I get so close without realizing it that I bump into the the people. And sometimes I have to listen to a few choice words.

Monday, April 21, 2014

4 4 2day

I hadn't planned on hitting the streets today. Exhausted from the crowds at the Easter Parade yesterday on Fifth avenue. But the temperature was just right, I needed to run an errand on 59th street, and took a walk down Lexington avenue because I had to stop in my favorite cigar store on 42nd street. The intersection of Fifth ave. and 42nd street was bustling at lunch time. I gave the 10-24mm f4 zoom a workout again. But I'm starting to feel the itch to get back to shooting with my primes.

1) On Lexington avenue:

2) On Lexington avenue, near Grand Central Terminal:

3) In front of the New York Public Library:

4) Sixth avenue on the way back to Penn Station:

Sunday, April 20, 2014

Pesach Rituals

Passover is a holiday that is rich with rituals - the whole purpose of the seder is to celebrate the the liberation from Egyptian bondage and the Exodus through symbols to recount the story and pass it on to the younger generations. Before the first seder each home must be cleansed of all remnants of food that contains any leavening - called chometz - and the crumbs burned in a fire. And rabbis contract with a non-jew to relieve them of the bulk of the chometz from their congregants.

Preparing the contracts and relinquishing the chometz to a non-jew:

Burning the crumbs of chometz:

Also part of the ritual, the palm and myrtle leaves - the lulav, which are an integral part of the Sukkot ceremony and which are collected after the holiday - are burned along with the chometz: