"Place, with a trace of humanity" Photography/Photo of the Day/Pittsburgh

Things in the Snow

I Drove Home in a Snow Globe

and of course, returned to the park.  It’s just blocks from my house.  And the light was low, the visibility poor.  A stark and magnificent beauty in the midst of the storm.

What were the trees doing today?    One day winter, one day Spring, one day freezing and dark, one day a warm sun but a chill in the wind.  I wanted to see the branches  outlined in snow.  The dark branches highlighted with the new fallen snow.  Actually, falling snow.

I was rewarded with a stunning winter scene, just before dusk.

It had started to snow while I was at school. The sky heavy and gray.  Big big flakes.   Melting on the street as it was 38 degrees.  I drove home in a snow globe.

Oh yes, today I got out of the car, scared off a squirrel and photographed the snowy park bench and my favorite tree. The sounds muffled by the new snow, barely sticking to the road but highlighting the curved lines.

park Bench in snow

 

 

 

these are unretouched color photographs

 

park road in snow

 

 

 

 

Two roads diverged….

two roads diverged

 

Home to tea.  Homemade spaghetti and cheese,  steamed broccoli.  Leftover fortune cookie and a mandarin orange. Winter.

 


Taillight and a Tall Pine in the Snow

Back to the park after school. I was later today.  The sun was sinking in the west and this was facing east.  When I wrote taillight it didn’t look correct but I checked it out with Merriam- Webster online and it is spelled right!    I thought about cropping out the car end but  changed my mind.  I think it adds perspective and information, allowing one to judge how tall the pine tree is.  It looks dead to me, but I am not an arborist.

Taillight and a Tall Pine in the Snow

 

 

Looks like the snow glows from the reflected setting sun.

 

It is a pine tree, isn’t it?

 

detail

pine tree detail two

pine tree detail

 

 

 


Dog Walker and a Snowy Tree

 

 

 

 

IMG_0587

 

Scroll down for the crop with the dog walker and his dogs in the distance.  Didn’t see him when I shot the photo.

Another color photograph that looks black and white.  Shot with a  EF Canon 50mm 1.2L  Lens-  500 ISO  f/16, 125 shutter.  Wish I had tried a few more settings at the time but wanted to get home.

Thursday the temperature is to be in the 50’s.  Unusual fluctuation- one day twenties and snow and ice, another day about zero, now up to sixty?

Something feels off.

Dog Walker in the Snow


Old Trees New Trees on a Winter Path

After school I drove into Highland Park, right near my home.  I’d taken a series of black and white photos for a film class years ago in this same spot and still have a print on my wall.

With the new snow today, I thought it might look interesting but the light was low and the sky thick and gray.

Found some new trees planted along the path, though.

I plan to return in the Spring.

There weren’t many dog walkers or walkers or runners or any activity in the park. The Super Playground deserted and covered with snow and ice.  No bicycles. The fountain turned off.  The reservoir a layer of ice.  The sounds muffled with the snow, but barely a car driving around the circle today.

It’s in color but almost looks black and white.

Highland Park Trees in Snow


Snowy Friday Afternoon in the City

It was snowing and really cold.  I actually pulled over,got out of the car and took this pictureI.  I  was headed home from school on Friday.

The idea of going to the regular grocery store was out of the question although the larder was fairly empty.  Had to stop somewhere.

I was in the Bloomfield neighborhood and decided to shop at Groceria Italiana and pick up some essentials.

When I got home I cooked the sweet and hot sausage and added the house sauce I had purchased.  (Chicago John avert your eyes- if you click his name you get a recipe for homemade meat sauce)

A little fresh grated cheese and a glass of organic wine. Glad to be in a warm house and it tasted just fine!  City Street in Snow

Snow in Doormat

Snow in the door mat!

Sausage

spaghetti


Incline in the Snow

I returned to the Duquesne Incline platform on Monday evening as I arrived from Ohio.  Not quite as much snow as I thought there would be.

Taken just as the sun sank in the sky and the temperatures dropped.  Will try again, a different winter day.

Couldn’t wait any longer to shoot when the sky was darker as it was too windy and cold.  You might have liked the night time version better.

IMG_3530


Mark Tests My New Remote Cable Release in the Snow

Here I am in snowy Ohio and I didn’t pack boots to come out here for Christmas vacation. Must have been lulled by all that Spring like weather we were having in December.

Mark is the guest blogger cause when he got home at ten Saturday night he  showed me a photo he had taken with his phone of the Christmas lights in the snow.  I asked him to go back out for me and take one for the blog.

So he took out my camera(Canon 5D with a 50mm lens)  and the new remote cable release that just got delivered via UPS and it was set at  ISO 400     f.1.4.    1/60 shutter.  I thought the result was excellent . First time using a cable remote and now he knows how to reduce camera shake.  Tripod in the back of the freezing car and no way we’re setting up unless the snow stops falling.

Thanks Mark. Maybe tomorrow night I will borrow Erika’s boots and trudge around in the snow.

Christmas Lights in Snow

 

 

 

Christmas Lights in Snow 1 (1)


The Newspaper said “Little to no accumulation…” but-

A friend called and invited me for a slice of cherry pie for President’s Day. Hot tea.  I walked down the hill wrapped up in hats and scarves and boots.  A good thing-  I couldn’t believe it when I came out of her front door two  hours later and the snow had accumulated and was piling up.  That 60 degree weather on Saturday and now this? YIKES.  I trudged home, shoveled the walk and it’s blowing and snowing and really cold.  The snow was wet and heavy and a 2 hour delay has been called already for school.  How they will clear all the streets before the school buses head out is a puzzle to me.   (edit 5:30 AM.  All schools are CLOSED!  At least they didn’t wait to call it at 7 when everyone is already there.  My friend just called, teaches instrumental music  and gave me the news auf Deautsch singing Schnee Tag )

Not Spring Yet!

It isn’t that we aren’t ready for the crocus
and blossoms.
We got an unexpected snowstorm.
Shoveling again. And again.
Burrowing in the flannel sheets.
Florida friends, I am thinking of you!

Back to bed.

View from my friend's front porch as I started my walk home up the hill.

Heard from many friends and family who knew and loved Lori today.  And from friends who didn’t know her but were touched by her story and loving image with Fredi.  I tried to write back little notes of thank you to those who emailed or posted and I told her sister Sara about the overwhelming response but she can’t bear to look at it right now, understandably. A sad day.


It Was a Great Season….

Didn’t want to miss a date on the postaday2011 challenge. New post coming at one minute after midnight.

Flying the colors to honor a great season.


Mazeroski in the Snow

Read a tip to revisit something you’ve already photographed, but return in another season or different time of day. After photographing Heinz Field the other day before the AFC game I swung by the Bill Mazeroski statue above the Allegheny River and shot him running into home plate, surrounded by snow.  Some of you may remember my photographing the statue unveiling. No people in this shot.  I had dinner with my friend  Sue R. who is  a  serious fan and a member of the Lady Bucs Club.  She has her tickets to go to Bradenton for Spring Training games.  I told her about shooting the statue in the snow and she said she was looking forward to seeing him. Susan Wagner is the sculptor of this incredible statue.

A memorable moment frozen for all time!


Whose Chairs?

A recurring theme around the city as I travel between schools-  I see chairs.  The chairs make me wonder about the owners, their usual occupants.  Somewhere in my hard drive I’ve a photo of a high chair near the curb, waiting for pick-up.  Chairs have a personality of their own. I love to hear the names of different types of chairs, each evoke an image- wing chair, ladderback, Windsor or Eames. Lawn chair, rocking chair, lounge or arm.  High chair, club chair, captain chair, molded plastic, patio or kitchen chair.  School chairs are not particularly comfortable. Kids love the rolling ones on wheels. Folding, stackable, side chair or throne.  Where do you sit?

Everyone has a chair.
Some more comfortable than others.
What kind of chair do you prefer?
As always,

Two yellow chairs and a gray one on Evaline Street. Yellow curb peeking through the snow.


Carnegie Library in the Snow

Night light refelcted in the city, one of my favorite things to shoot- add the snow factor.


Baby Doll Flies Like a Flag on the Moon

Where a house used to be, unshoveled steps to an empty lot.  An iron pipe for a rail. What’s left of it.  On the way to school I look up and see this bizarre sight.  Pulled over, flashers on, catch of the day, one block from school Thursday morning.  Had to look up the definition of stock-still

a rubber baby doll stuck on an iron rail on an abandoned lot a block from school

Just like the flag planted on the moon, immobile.


Winter Night Lights in the City

Days are longer now. Natural light still shining yesterday at 6:30 PM as I drove from school- teachers had to make up time off for the G20 days.  The sunlight through the new library windows so intense it hurt our eyes.  The blinds are on order.   The bright light a welcome change.  Birds chirp in the morning now.  The snowpiles melting. You feel a “lift”.  Wednesday night I drove down Hampton St. and this house on the corner shone like daylight it was so bright.  Unexpected cheery lights

available light shot through a windshield

As a lighthouse beacon for wayfarers traveling city streets at night


One Whitewall in the Snow at Night

Shadyside,Pittsburgh- College St. at Ellsworth on Monday Night 3-1-10Lincoln Town Car Parked in the Snow Vintage

Mark Identified the Model as the One "Pop" Drove In Florida


Unexpected Window Decor in the Snow

You park your car, walk down the street and find the unexpected.taxidermist delight, stuffed squirrel on a branch

Vase of Flowers or Figurine? Taxidermist Handiwork Mounted on a Branch.


Finding Signs in the Snow

Watch Children No Parking in This Street and Mother Mary

Found these signs as I drove to Dorothy's for tea.


Wedding Flowers in the Snow

What photo to put up?  A dilemma. There’s the ongoing documentation of the storm, the damage done-  like the aluminum canopy over gas pumps all twisted as if in a tornado, buckled under the weight of the snow.  Or an Alpine mountain (i.e. huge pile) of snow that looks like Geology class. So many layers, the striations  from the different days. The bottom layer  almost black sedimentary rock-  coal!  A dusting of confectioner’s sugar on top.  The snow I shoveled today felt like the stuff in the movies, that ersatz fluff in the Nutcracker that floats down  onto the Snow Queen.  If you need to Create Fake Snow Falling from a Ceiling for a School Play there are instructions. Tomorrow’s  shovelfuls might be like concrete.  And it’s snowing as I think of what to share.  Lots of comments and emails about Spring and the hope for pictures with green in them.  Hmmm, what to do?  I’d set this up on my front porch after returning from a happy Valentine’s wedding in D.C., souvenirs from a lovely celebration.

Valentine's Wedding Flowers Charlotte and Joel's wedding February 14, 2010

Charlotte & Joel married on her Grandparents' Wedding Anniversary (wed 2-14-1942) Their photo on back of program


Icicles Backlit by Low Beams on Josephine St

When I left Tess’s house after Book Club, the snow and streetlights created a dramatic winter scene.  She pointed out the giant icicles on the neighboring house.  Walked to the corner and took a shot but just not enough light to make them interesting.  A car came down the hill. I was able to catch some of the light from their low beams as they backlit the giant icicles that almost touched the ground.( Well, the deep snow covering the ground). The term chiaroscuro surfaces as I look at the shading now, the darkness, the light. An article about the use of it in photography Lighting is All About Chiaroscuro explains what I was trying to achieve with the use of available light.  The car’s lights timing saved the shot.

Caught the light just as the car approached the stop sign.


Wild Turkey in the Snow

Unusual back up on Bigelow Boulevard and no traffic from the oncoming direction.  Saw the wild turkeys eating the corn put out for them. Usually you would fly by doing 45, no chance for a shot.  I was driving from school,  surprised by the long two lines of cars as I approached Herron Hill intersection.  Fluffy large flakes and an increase in wind?  Just driving and thinking. Inching up to the light.  Thinking.  The huge TV at the gym explained the clog. Showed the scene I’d just driven by but I’m not reporting on that.  Today it is just Wild Turkey in the Snow.

Wild Turkey in Urban Landscape

Wild Turkey in an Urban Landscape, No Still Life Today

But today it is just the Wild Turkey in the Snow.


TV Still Life in the Snow

What I Found on the Way Home From SchoolYou turn on Spring St and there it is.  Shot of the day, waiting for me.

I counted fifteen recycle bags. The discarded television looks really heavy to me.

Waiting for pickup.  Any idea what year the Television set was made?


Giant Cyclops in the Snow on Carson Street

Family, friends and neighbors suggest pictures for me to shoot.  Tess said, “Ruthie, you have to get a photo of the giant Snow Cyclops!”  But he was over on the South Side and for 9 days I wasn’t driving anywhere.

Thursday night I left the Art Institute downtown and headed for Book Club on Josephine Street, and there he was waiting for me. Not melted yet!   Deep and dirty piles of snow so nowhere to park. Pulled into the bus stop, pushed the flashers button.   Got out of the car completely, careful of traffic on Carson Street, and felt like photographer on assignment.  Self-imposed!   Thanks Tess. Kyklops Tattoo for all your tattoo needs!

Snow Cyclops in front of Tattoo Parlor

The temperature rose today so I was lucky to catch him before he started to melt


“By Their Sidewalks You Will Know Them” Guest Poet Timons Esaias

Tim's Poem Came to Mind as I Admired the Concrete First Time in Two Weeks

*NOTE to poet(s)   not knowing HTML code I am restricted by the format of this blog template and or the limits of Text/Edit from word.doc to Mac? and the poem will not publish in the original format.   It is a five stanza poem and the breaks occur after   -out.   -Way.  -human. – eternal. Hence the hyphens for space and breath.

By Their Sidewalks You Will Know Them

-

Originally there were eleven Commandments

Moses, perhaps confused by the unfamiliar

snow, ice, and sidewalk,

botched one, and left it out.

-

But Buddha said that though Life is Pain,

falling on ice is gratuitous pain

and those who cause it, by neglect,

should never escape the Wheel of Rebirth;

and Lao-Tzu agreed, for those who will not

clear the path will never find the Way.

-

Zoroaster, in the endless war of light

against ice, demanded diligence;

claimed that those who surrender

the public way to the Enemy

have empty souls,

can scarcely be regarded as human.

-

The Prophet, regarding sidewalks and snow,

is silent; but his sura

Sand Drifting Against the Caravanserai Gate

is thought to apply. The condemnation there

is brutal and eternal.

-

Plato counted safe sidewalks as fundamental

to the ideal Republic, noting that those remiss

in this clear duty lacked all character;

and his pupil – perceptive, immortal Aristotle-

further declared, famously, that

lack of character

is destiny.

Timons Esaias


Timons Esaias is a writer and poet living in Pittsburgh.  His short stories, ranging from literary to genre, have been published in fourteen languages.  He has had over a hundred poems in print, including Spanish, Swedish and Chinese translations, in such markets as 5AMBathtub GinMain Street RagWillard & MapleElysian Fields Quarterly: The Literary Journal of Baseball and many others.  He has also been a finalist for the British Science Fiction Award, and won the Asimov’s Readers Award.  His poetry chapbook, The Influence of Pigeons on Architecture, sold out two editions.  He is Adjunct Faculty at Seton Hill University, in the Writing Popular Fiction M.F.A. Program.  This poem was originally published in hotmetalpoets.com when it existed.


How City Students Walk to School in the Snow -View from the Bottom/View from the Top

Some Ft.Pitt Elementary students have to climb these city steps up the hill to school. The blue sign says Rosetta Street.  When I got to school, I could see two city trucks and  a crew clearing the steps for the children to walk.  I thought their efforts should be documented. The unsung heroes of the storm.  What a lot of snow to shovel.  The clock tower peeking through the trees is where I teach on Mondays and Tuesdays.  Photographed  Tuesday Feb. 16, 2010

City Crew Clearing the Steps for the Students on Tuesday

City Steps to Ft PItt- View from the bottom.City Crew Shoveling the Steps so Students Can Walk to School


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