Posts Tagged ‘black and white’

The High Line

Monday, March 7th, 2011

Yesterday, the high for New York City was listed as 55°F, and when I looked at the reported temperature around noon, it said 59°F. (Please note this is the first week of March we’re talking about here.) It was an incredible day. Somewhat unfortunately, I spent the first half of it lounging in bed with my two new adopted cats. (They came with our sublet in Brooklyn.) Thankfully, Tristan called and inspired me to abandon my cuddly friends so that we could meet in Manhattan and go for a photo walk. I extended the invite on to Alex, and while brainstorming places to go, we discovered that none of us had ever been to the High Line, despite all having lived in NYC for a good while since they built it, and all having wanted to go!

So, off we went, from our respective corners of the city, and with our respective camera equipment. The day was indeed remarkably warm upon first setting out, although I was a bit apprehensive about the amount of wind (especially since I had been a bit cocky with my attire, wearing only a t-shirt and light jacket on top). I found Tristan in Manhattan soon after he bought some new film (yeah, he’s one of those), and we met Alex at the High Line.

New York, NY (Mar 5, 2011)

Photo taken in New York, NY on March 5, 2011.

Now, the High Line was cool – I don’t deny that. I love it in concept, and I do like it in practice… But, it didn’t quite meet all of my grand wild expectations. Maybe I just wasn’t in the greatest of moods because the wind picked up dramatically (and the temperature dropped accordingly) almost the moment we climbed up, but in my opinion, the “park” is kind of short (spanning only about 8 or 10 blocks) and laid out a bit too much like a track and not enough like a park. (I realize that is fitting, considering what they were building upon. EDIT: I just looked it up and it turns out “Section 2″ is opening up later this Spring, and it’s going to have a lot of cool features that would make me like the whole park a lot more – including a lawn!)

I don’t know. I just felt cold, and rather stressed. Then again, wind always stresses me out, and mobs of people don’t help either. (We weren’t the only ones who had the idea of walking the High Line on such a nice day, or what was one a few hours prior.) So, I didn’t feel very creative, and I certainly didn’t take very many photos, but it was great to have a chance to hang out with Tristan (who doesn’t often get away from med school in the Bronx) and Alex all the same.

New York, NY (Mar 5, 2011)
New York, NY (Mar 5, 2011)
New York, NY (Mar 5, 2011)
New York, NY (Mar 5, 2011)

Photos taken in New York, NY on March 5, 2011.

A (black and) white winter

Monday, March 7th, 2011

I feel like it has been a long time since I enjoyed a true snowy winter. Last year, Catie and I were riding elephants through the (particularly un-snowy) jungles of Nepal on Christmas (an event – and an entire country! – which I promise will be photo-blogged about someday). The year before that, we were living in Manhattan, where the entire city seems to shut down over just an inch or two of fluffy precipitation (and not much more than that ever sticks to the asphalt ground beneath your feet). We were due for a quality cold season this time around.

Anchorage, AK (Feb 10, 2011)

Photo taken in Anchorage, AK on February 10, 2011.

We were not disappointed. I enjoyed record-setting amounts of snow while I was in Minnesota (admittedly mostly by watching it fall outside my window while working on graduate school applications), and Catie and I (and Abbie) played outside as much as we could while I was in Alaska. I haven’t been taking a huge number of photos over the last few months, but I did bring my camera along for a number of walks and snowshoeing adventures around Anchorage. A lot of those times, I kept my camera’s picture control settings on monochrome and slightly high contrast. It seemed to fit well with the vast white landscapes surrounding us.

Anchorage, AK (Jan 30, 2011)
Anchorage, AK (Jan 30, 2011)
Anchorage, AK (Feb 10, 2011)
Anchorage, AK (Feb 10, 2011)
Anchorage, AK (Feb 10, 2011)
Anchorage, AK (Feb 10, 2011)
Anchorage, AK (Feb 10, 2011)
Anchorage, AK (Feb 10, 2011)
Anchorage, AK (Feb 10, 2011)
Anchorage, AK (Feb 14, 2011)

Photos taken in Anchorage, AK between January 30 and February 14, 2011.

Back in “the” city

Tuesday, March 1st, 2011

Well, somehow I’ve made my way once again back to New York City. After France, I spent a mildly painful (but extremely productive and satisfying) two months shut up in my room in MN preparing my portfolio and applying to graduate schools (namely SVA Interaction Design, Parsons Design & Technology, NYU Tisch ITP, and RISD Digital + Media). I took a short trip out East to visit said schools, and then ran away to Alaska for almost a month to relax / visit Catie’s family / remember how to be a somewhat normal social human being again. Somewhere along the way, Catie and I decided that we would come back to the city early this Spring so that while I (we) waited to hear back about whether I got into school somewhere, I could coach tennis again, start working on iOS projects with other people (and perhaps do a few photography jobs again as well), and hopefully make a little bit of money. (Nothing I do will even remotely register against my forthcoming graduate-school-shaped abyss of debt, but I figure I should at least try to scramble above zero before I take the plunge.) We have a temporary two month sublet set up for March and April, after which (if my hopes and dreams aren’t completely dashed four for four) we will find a more permanent living arrangement.

It’s odd being back in this place all of a sudden, especially on a potentially long-term basis… But, I love it here. I feel comfortable. The rhythms of NYC have obviously lain dormant and persistent inside of me during my absence, as they sprung back into action instantly upon my return. I know when to cross the street, no matter what the traffic signals. I pride myself in expertly weaving through shifting crowds on the sidewalk. I bask in the periodic breaks from the action above while sitting on the subway, listening to audiobooks and people-watching to my heart’s content. It all just makes sense to me.

Of course, I still can’t help thinking about all the other places I’ve been lately, and everything I’m missing by being back here… That’s a stupid way to think, I know – especially when NYC has so much. I’m going to try to just make the most of this place while I’m here this time, and trust that Catie and I will invariably find ourselves out and about in the world once again, someday soon, and that we will make the most of those new places when we find them.

In line with that optimistic proactive note, I spent yesterday afternoon camera-walking around Central Park with my old college friend and talented graphic designer Alex Berger. He recently upgraded from my old D70 (that I sold him circa 2006) to a D7000 (an upgrade of 100x, if you’re counting!), so we took it out for a spin, and I brought along my D3 as well.

New York, NY (Feb 27, 2011)

Photo taken in New York, NY on February 27, 2011.

Although not a great deal of it has made its way onto this blog (yet), I continue to shoot a lot of manual-exposure high contrast black and white straight-out-of-the-camera JPG images… My whole photographic style seems to be evolving. Not only am I exposing images differently, but I find myself forming compositions that I probably would have despised two years ago. Maybe my eye is maturing as I get older (my 26th birthday was just a couple weeks ago), or maybe I just keep getting bored with myself. Either way, I find the shift interesting.

New York, NY (Feb 27, 2011)
New York, NY (Feb 27, 2011)
New York, NY (Feb 27, 2011)
New York, NY (Feb 27, 2011)
New York, NY (Feb 27, 2011)
New York, NY (Feb 27, 2011)
New York, NY (Feb 27, 2011)
New York, NY (Feb 27, 2011)
New York, NY (Feb 27, 2011)
New York, NY (Feb 27, 2011)
New York, NY (Feb 27, 2011)
New York, NY (Feb 27, 2011)

Photos taken in New York, NY on February 27, 2011.

My last day in Lyon

Wednesday, November 24th, 2010

The day I had to leave Lyon snuck up on me much faster than I expected. I don’t feel like I was there for three months. It’s hard continually introducing myself to a new place to live. I feel like right when I start getting the hang of it, it’s time to move on again. It is great to see so many parts of the world and experience such different cultures. (I’m not sure I could name five similarities between Bangladesh and France…) But, I still don’t really have the hang of such a nomadic lifestyle, I think. It takes me a long time to warm up when I wake up in the morning, and similarly it takes me a while to warm up in a new city.

Catie and Emma gave me free reign on what we should do my last afternoon in the city. It was a beautiful day after a couple blanketed with rain, so I steered us toward the Parc de la Tete d’Or. (Just like a Minnesotan to spend his last day in a great city at the park.) Emma hadn’t been there yet anyway, so it was a good fit. The park felt different from the other times we had visited. The trees were almost all bare, and there was hardly anyone walking about, so the place felt very open. It was quiet, and a nice way to say farewell.

Lyon, France (Nov 16, 2010)

Photo taken in Lyon, France on November 16, 2010.

I will miss France. I wish I felt like I had become a bit “French” myself, but I don’t think I had enough time (or perhaps I have just too much “goof” coursing through my veins). Maybe Catie and I will make it back again someday, and I can try again (and maybe learn a decent bit of the language too, although Catie definitely has us covered in that department). In the meantime, I’ll be in MN for the next month and a half working on art projects and applying to graduate school, and generally enjoying the holidays at home for a change. (And unfortunately, I will probably be making a concerted effort to neglect this blog while I focus on those other things…)

I have no idea what is coming next… Domesticity? A hemispheric shift? Anything is possible…

Lyon, France (Nov 16, 2010)
Lyon, France (Nov 16, 2010)
Lyon, France (Nov 16, 2010)
Lyon, France (Nov 16, 2010)
Lyon, France (Nov 16, 2010)
Lyon, France (Nov 16, 2010)
Lyon, France (Nov 16, 2010)
Lyon, France (Nov 16, 2010)
Lyon, France (Nov 16, 2010)
Lyon, France (Nov 16, 2010)
Lyon, France (Nov 16, 2010)

Photos taken in Lyon, France on November 16, 2010.

It’s a little rainy out but so what

Wednesday, November 24th, 2010

After we got back to Lyon from Marseille, I only had two and a half days (even less than Emma!) left in France before flying back to Minnesota to try to sort out and make some accelerated progress on my future life (hopefully publishing a few apps to the iOS app store, and figuring out and completing graduate school applications). It rained all of Tuesday morning, but after trying to wait it out a while eating lunch and playing a game or two, we remembered that we were Alaskans and Minnesotans (Minnelasktans?) – not some silly city folk that are scared by a little rain!

Lyon, France (Nov 15, 2010)

Photo taken in Lyon, France on November 15, 2010.

So, we set off. We didn’t have much of a destination in mind, and it definitely did continue raining for almost the entire time we were out, but that didn’t stop us in the slightest from having a wonderful time wandering about the city (as we so often do in cities) and taking some photos as well. (It has to be raining fairly hard before I really start worrying about a well built professional Nikon camera. And no, unfortunately I am not getting paid to say that.)

Lyon, France (Nov 15, 2010)
Lyon, France (Nov 15, 2010)
Lyon, France (Nov 15, 2010)
Lyon, France (Nov 15, 2010)
Lyon, France (Nov 15, 2010)
Lyon, France (Nov 15, 2010)
Lyon, France (Nov 15, 2010)
Lyon, France (Nov 15, 2010)
Lyon, France (Nov 15, 2010)
Lyon, France (Nov 15, 2010)
Lyon, France (Nov 15, 2010)
Lyon, France (Nov 15, 2010)
Lyon, France (Nov 15, 2010)
Lyon, France (Nov 15, 2010)
Lyon, France (Nov 15, 2010)

Photos taken in Lyon, France on November 15, 2010.