Apropos very little, I just came upon a neglected image from our last trip to New York City. The image reminded me of the importance of graphic elements to the creation of a good photograph. In nature, that can be tougher to come by, but that doesn’t make it any less desirable.
(Taken with a Nikon D3s and 50 mm lens. Iso 1600. Very little noise. It is a good time to be a photographer.)
Two final shots from a recent trip to the Apple, both taken at South Street Seaport, which is a “target rich environment” if you’re a photographer. This 10 shot or so panorama of Brooklyn was taken from the end of the pier. (Click on the images for a much better view.)
These were both taken hand held, amazingly, stitched together in photoshop. Unfortunately, the Brooklyn panorama wasn’t big enough to be posted on gigapan, believe it or not. The following, my favorite, was, however. These are the ships masts at the Seaport.
You’ll find the gigapan version here. Farewell, New York. We’ll see you again in the fall.
Taking a break from environmental concerns (and the yoyo of the stock market) we had a nice visit to Manhattan, courtesy of Al, Donna, Maya and Chester. While I was fully equipped with my Nikon’s, both film and digital, the iPhone got a lot of use, I think in part because it encourages the photographer to let go of reality (a state of mind that fits in quite well in Manhattan). Some people can’t stand the City because it is so intense, so powerful, so awesome, and iPhone apps can help to capture that mood.
It’s not the objective reality. In fact, at the risk of sounding heretical, I don’t think the camera in the phone is particularly good. It’s the apps that allow you to capture the feeling in a way that can be more difficult with a traditional photographic instrument.
The round building was, I am told, the work home of one Mr. Bernard Madoff. Sometimes reality is every bit as frightening as anything we can imagine. I continue to be most impressed though with the iPhone’s love affair with flowers. I’ve come to the conclusion that the lens in the phone is maybe the equivalent of a 40 mm lens (on a regular camera). It’s pretty wide, and as is frequently the case with a wide angle lens, you can get in real close.
A rose by any other name…..
More snow on the way. Crimping my style, though it shouldn’t be. Snow does great things for the landscape, but more about that to come. Before leaving the New York City canopy (for now, you will always come back to the New York City if you’re interested in urban nature), I just wanted to mention the interesting take on the canopy you’ll experience in many locations if you simply look up. From Bryant Park, right along 42nd St. on a cloudy day…. (Click on the images for a better view.)
The canopy is far more visible in some ways than during the summer months.
It is clearly easier to create this wrapping effect in parks and along avenues, but it’s value to the urban experience is without question.
Tech note: Taken with an Olympus EPl-2, a nice little camera that fits in your pocket. I can see why these things are selling so well.
Did you ever notice that in those science fiction movies that portray what our lives will likely be like (usually not for the better) maybe 100 years hence, the landscape is often devoid of any hint of nature. I’m struck by the question I’ve occasionally had over the years to the effect “why is a nature photographer carrying a camera in the city?” Luckily, back on planet earth, our reality, at least so far, is not one devoid of nature where we live. Thanks to the sometimes paternalistic foresight of most of our city planners, trees are a fixture of the urban landscape. As I’ve said before though, they are under threat, as documented by the wonderful work of Everlyn Herwitz, Trees at Risk . In fact the canopy of trees that has given many cities large and small so much in the way of fresh air, shade and aesthetic beauty is shrinking. (To say nothing of the urban canopy’s capability as a warrior against global warming.)
But sometimes people with the power to do something about a problem actually step up and take positive action, so here’s a shout out to Mayor Bloomberg of New York City and his Million Trees campaign. We just returned from a wonderful week in New York with Al and Donna, and spent some time in Central Park on a bitterly cold day. Not much of a canopy this time of year of course, but the trees are still with us, everywhere we go. In the winter, the shapes of the trees stand out, as well as their reach, the way they seem to interact with one another, and with the people who depend upon them, and on whom they depend. (Click on the images for a better view.)
A city without trees is unthinkable; so, thank you Mr. Mayor. (Even though you had some trouble getting the streets cleaned in December.) There are many such initiatives underway throughout the United States, including several in Worcester, Massachusetts, my home town. They are worthy of your consideration and support.