Friday night in Laura and James’ living room, I was telling them what the weekly photo challenge was.
Laura said, “I have pumpkins on the front porch and Christmas decorations in a box.” So I went out onto the front porch but when I saw the neighbor’s Christmas lights and a mini-bus drove by, I knew I had the shot for the Change of Seasons challenge.
Change of Seasons. And the temperature is 50 degrees making it feel like a Spring evening.
A friend had an extra ticket to the The Music of Michael Jackson Tribute with the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra who put on a stellar musical performance. People were on their feet, clapping and dancing to the familiar music as the star of the show gave it his all. It was a tribute not an impersonation pointed out the star, James Delisco. It was a fun night and an unexpected outing on a Tuesday evening. Thanks Barb and Penny.
The Heinz Hall was elegantly decorated for Christmas. Single glittery gloves were passed out and kids 13 and under got a chance to come up onstage for the last number, Thriller, and show their moves.
Photos by iPhone again.
Macy’s windows were filled with holiday displays. The giant Nativity scene and the Menorah display were by the old USSteel building, now UPMC. Preparations for the holidays are in full swing in downtown Pittsburgh.
Murphy sat on the back porch before bed. When I went to let him in, I saw a popcorn looking sky from the moon and the glow of the porch motion light- on and off, on and off- as he turned his head. The deck wood looked red.
No time to get a remote cable and eliminate camera shake.
A deep breath as I propped the camera against the edge of the sliding glass door. Depressed the shutter button while I held my breath. No worries that WordPress forgot to issue their weekly photo challenge.
You might remember the post where I wrote how I knew I should ALWAYS carry my camera with me. ALWAYS
Friday night Steve asked if I wanted to grab a bite to eat. It was a long day at school. Sure.
We drove down to Park Brugges and the line was out the door. Plan B. We drove to BRGR and at least a 1/2 hour wait. Spoon, no reservation? A table might open up at nine. Okay.
Plan C. Let’s drive to Millvale and eat at Grant Avenue Bar.
We got to the front of the place and it was Millvale Days! Who knew? There was a wrestling ring and ropes and a referee and oh my goodness a Ferris Wheel and games and booths and bands and people. People all over the place. Snack stands and cotton candy trailers and NO camera. Well the phone.
We walked around and of course, I’d left my camera in my school bag. At home. Oh no.
My sister walked with us from the Parking Lot on the West Pier. We walked down St. Luke’s Place as we made our way to her apartment. Film locations abound in New York City but she thought this one especially interesting looking at night.
Mary goes to the library and can watch the swimmers right from the library window.
AND- Audrey Hepburn’s Wait Until Dark was filmed across the street on St Luke’s Place.(click to see location)
The pool location is Carmine Street Pool(click to see the scene from film) and it was about two am Monday night/Tuesday morning and really dark. There were some bright spotlights, too, and didn’t have time to monkey around with the ideal settings.
I set the camera on the timer so I didn’t get camera shake. Propped it on a concrete ledge of the fence base.
I took it from the angle where the Keith Haring Mural wasn’t visible and didn’t go back in the daytime as I’d planned. Next trip.
A personal note-
Drove home from NYC Thursday afternoon and Friday morning at 7:30 I start a new job as the Digital Photography Teacher at Carrick High School. After 20 years in Elementary Art it is going to be different and I am quite excited. Thanks to everyone for the good wishes and emails and for following the blog, leaving thoughtful comments and being patient when I don’t reply to each note. Making adjustments to the daily post as no more staying up past midnight to blog since I have to leave my house so early.
Four images. Fourth of July. Starting with………….
Fourth of July Parade with Ballerinas just before noon in a sweltering heat, a blazing sun, scorching pavement…..okay, enough descriptors.It was hot hot hot. Or should I say HOT HOT HOT. (sorry, Arrow) Today we were all practically listless. Laura and James power is back on after five days but Marlene and Donald have been without power for a whole week and hope tomorrow is the day. So the holiday took a different turn than planned as I wrote before. The evening was a challenge as I tried to shoot the sparklers with a slow shutter speed.-
and for the sparkler portion of the evening. I sure wish I realized I had brought my tripod in the back of the car.
Found it there today when loading up some groceries.
Daddy Mark puts on a sparkler show for the kids as they watch the fireworks over the pine trees. It was a fun time and a great birthday party.
The Weekly Photo Challenge: Movement as interpreted by fellow bloggers
Oakland section of Pittsburgh. Looked like Europe to me. I was surprised to see it so bright as I guess I haven’t driven this route at night lately.
After the poetry reading at Pitt, I was driving by last Thursday night and noticed the illuminated facade so drove around the block and photographed the cathedral at night.
The building history is available here. The date of the building on their website is 1906.
Dinner at Lala’s and James’ home. Building with Lego. I’m “grandmaing” the three youngest grandkids this weekend as the eldest is at a swimmeet in Cincinnati. With her parents, of course.
So we watched Laura and James’ wedding video they received this week and Jack and Michael were ring bearers and Anna and Maura flower girls so they liked seeing themselves but then Jack(4) goes in the kitchen at seven and says, ” Could someone please start making dinner!” We were caught up in reliving the November wedding. Laura baked some homemade pizza and I had taken a spinach pie. For dessert I’d made the Farm Journal Blue Ribbon Banana Cake with buttermilk and real butter instead of the shortening the recipe calls for.
We piled into the van and I drove home and barely a block away and all three kids fell asleep! When we got home I carried each one in, made a stop with them and then took off their shoes and put them in their beds. I’d sat in the van for a moment when we got into the garage and thought to myself, okay, now what will I do with all of them asleep. Michael really came in on his own power once I got him guided a bit. And Murphy was so excited to accompany the family for the evening.
I didn’t have a plan of what to blog tonight and thought WordPress would have posted the Weekly Photo Challenge by this time but they didn’t and I was “on duty” with the kids so hadn’t thought about what to put up.
Available light photography at night is my challenge. I find it fun but not always easy. The one family shot I lit the family with the flashlight app from the iPhone so I could get some light on their faces. It was chilly but not bitter. We saw a rhinoceros, the tiger pacing, a sleeping polar bear but mostly it was the colored lights on every tree and branch, some reflected in a pool of water. My son Mark and his wife Erika, the four grandchildren(Anna, Michael, Jack and Maura), my DIL’s cousin Shannon who is like a sister to her and her daughter Parker were all willing to stand still in the lights as I tried to focus quickly. We had a lot of fun.
Along the Monongahela River by late afternoon light and at night on the way home from the Waterfront in Homestead. Two of my favorite views, anytime of day or night!
I had the cardboard “me” in the car already. We make people out of brown corrugated boxes. I always make myself as a model for the students, this year with gray yarn hair!
Some of you know I teach Art in the City K-8th grade. Not too many people get to make themselves out of scrap cardboard at their job. The “Flat Ruthie” (have you ever seen Flat Stanley?-I photographed him for granddaughter Anna’s school project) was driving around with me cause I was thinking it might make a fun Christmas card, myself and the skyline or something.
In 2009 I was in a self-portrait show at Silver Eye Center of Photography. I can’t tell you how many images I shot of myself in my kitchen, trying to look young and thin. Figured I could achieve both effects with myself as a cardboard puppet. No wrinkles on the smooth cardboard.
Not a sprig of evergreen or a single bulb at my house. Not an angel or a garland or candy cane.
And then I drive by this place! WHOA.
Serious decorations. I wonder where they store them the other eleven months. The traffic must stop as gawkers drive by. Like me.
By a friend’s special request, the first holiday house spotted and captured at night. Last year, or maybe it was the year before, I used to drive around and shoot inflatable turkeys and then Santas on rooftops and even an inflatable nativity scene and when I got out of the car I could hear the air blowing. Somehow I lost interest in this subject matter. On the way to Virginia, one lawn had 37 inflatables the inhabitants told me. After that spotting, I just didn’t feel moved to try and capture the blowing hot air filling the bright, colored cloth. Everyone had them on their lawn or so it seemed. I stopped saying, “Holy Cow, I can’t believe that display!” and raise my camera to shoot.
It’s not that I am Scroogella or anything. I enjoy other people’s efforts to brighten the darkness (and sunset comes before 5PM these days), I just got out of the “seeing” the decorations and photographing them. .
But I’m back- what else could I do? This scene could not be ignored.
These lights demanded my attention and capture.
Friday night music was great at the Club Cafe on the South Side. I loved the contrast of the neon’s warm colors of Jack’s and cool blue neon of Club Cafe. I know the “e” is missing but I liked the image of Jack’s going around the corner so I chose this one. I took this shot from across the street as we left to go home.
But wait, we didn’t go right home-
Even though we were exhausted, R invited us to go to the Double-Wide Grill where the onion rings satisfy that deep urge to eat something not really good for you but doesn’t it taste great. (seem to be doing a lot of that type of eating lately) You know I have a thing for old service stations and auto mechanics, right? The old fashioned kind. I did not photograph the food. Hmmmm. But you get a feel for the place.
And when we left I took a shot from the outside and the old gas tank had the amount 37 cents on it. Remember that price per gallon?
On the way home from school I wound around and up Sycamore Street to Mount Washington. Parked and pulled out the sweater and blazer in the back of the car and layered as best I could. No tripod, no cable remote. Took this with the Self-Timer and propped the camera on an iron fence on the Duquesne Incline platform. Watched the sky grow dark. Met people from Dallas, Las Vegas, a couple of Pitt students and New York City and photographed them with the light up night behind them. An Art Institute Special Effects major was shooting a time lapse exposure and we chatted. Did I mention it was in the low thirties? With a wind chill factor that made it seem really chilly.
A week ago we were in the Columbus Athletic Club bowling and preparing for the wedding celebration. Didn’t feel like driving right home after school and had stayed late to get ready for next week. An art room always needs attention.
My blog header is Light Up Night 2010 shot from the Monongahela Incline.
The movie is causing a buzz and some traffic around the Burgh. One Shot is the name of the film after a novel by Lee Child. On the way to my photo class I saw the lights set up on the bridge and a few giant movie lights on top of some buildings. Heard on the radio Armstrong Tunnels would be closed. Remembered my photo for the weekly challenge of fall, with the 10th St Bridge in the autumn light and thought I would go my usual school route. Here is the series of bridge shots taken on the way home from class Wednesday night. A circuitous route but worth the detour in my opinion.
I could hear and see a car race and screech across the bridge as I photographed. Next time I will bring a spotter to keep watch as I pulled the car over but it is dark and a bit creepy up on the top of Arlington Avenue, my route home from school. I have shot from this angle before and here is the link to the daytime photo.
Photo four has a bright movie light on the right of the photo.
Along the Allegheny River, across from downtown. Riverfront Park. I was on a field trip with a photography class I signed up for through Manchester Craftsmen’s Guild. Next week we’re going to a greenhouse to photograph orchids. The other class members are people I have taken classes with before so that is fun! Wednesday night was Light Up the Night Walk for Lymphoma and Leukemia. One walker said they raised $700,000 dollars if I heard him correctly. The walkers had red balloons with flashing lights inside which I tired to photograph but didn’t really work out. I’ve shot this skyline angle before. But then the moment happens and the bicyclist drives by into the frame and because the shutter was open for 30 seconds you can see the trail of light. I think it adds interest to the scene. There were lots of people readying the area for the Tom Cruise movie they are shooting, putting tape down on the cement walk to mark the actor’s places. Turning an office building into a hotel. There were benches and additions to the walk- a kiosk and a rental shed.
Photo-of-the-day from the archives. Omak WA.
Information about this celebration at St. Raphael’s in Morningside arrived in my inbox from the community list-serve. Said there would be fireworks. When I got there a band from Cleveland was playing Italian songs and couples were dancing. A large statue of Saint Rocco was illuminated and people would go up and kiss their hand and touch him. He is the protector of contagious disease and pestilence. There was a statue of a dog with a loaf of bread in his mouth right by his side and you can read his story here. At first I took a few timid photos with my phone as I felt conspicuous. But when the fireworks started I pulled out my regular camera and propped it against the chain link fence and caught the scene. The full moon looks less dramatic in the image than it felt in person. Used a 24-70 L series lens and the remote cable to reduce camera shake. The fireworks were fun and everyone thought they were over and then more would shoot up and an audible oooooh and aaaaah came from the crowd. A nice summer evening, it is 64 degrees right now!
As I an writing this post I think that it is almost two years that I started the blog. And when I checked the stats I see that the first post was 7-14-09. Two years and a day. Happy Blog–aversary. Thanks to all the readers who have followed my blog, written comments on the blog, written nice emails to me or told me about which photo they enjoyed seeing. And to the friends of friends who have shared the posts and photographs, whom I have met only online, I appreciate your good feedback, too. SO here is the today’s post-
Stephanie cuts my hair. She asked me how the photography was going. I told her how I photograph and post a photo of the day on the blog. (Today is the #658 post.) She told Jack, her husband and he looked at my photos online and invited me down Thursday night when he plays Bocce. Here is his website.
It was a perfect summer evening and the men were gracious, allowing me to photograph the games. Tried to be unobtrusive and hung there for over two hours. One gentleman is 97 years old! I sat on a bench at the end of the court for a time, shooting intermittently. A little conversation here and there. And there was the moonrise over the bocce court.
Although I was invited to the mid-season party at the Pleasure Bar on Tuesday, I already have plans with the grandchildren….but I got to hear the menu! Mmmmmm. I am really missing out. Fortunately there is an end of season party in the fall!.
Thanks Jack and to the Bocce League, playing under the cars passing over the Bloomfield Bridge on a summer night.
No Cow Jumping Over
Steve went with me to Mt. Washington and what a crowd of photographers set up with their fancy equipment and tripods when we arrived. I have a nice camera but I can’t imagine what some of that equipment cost!
I wish I had asked Keith or Andy some tips on how to shoot the city light and super moon light simultaneously and get a good effect. I thought it was hard. And that Spring weather was 40ish but felt like a freeze with the wind from the river. I shot primarily with the 70-200mm lens. Wished I knew more about how to get the city and moon at the same time but there wasn’t anything you could do about the positioning of the moon in relation to the buildings. Duh. Oh it was so bright!
Saturday March 19th will be the SUPER MOON. I shot this on the way home from class on Wednesday night. I was shooting the statue of Roberto Clemente and noticed the moon in the frame. Going to try and shoot the super moon Saturday night.
No Concrete Proof
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
We got an unexpected snowstorm.
Shoveling again. And again.
Burrowing in the flannel sheets.
Florida friends, I am thinking of you!
Back to bed.
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.