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Posts from the ‘Architecture’ Category

Light, camera, action…

 

In previous posts, I took images of New York City and, through the magic of post-processing, managed to harken back to an era long gone by. There is a certain magic in that, a bit of alchemy that allows a modern photographer to artistically render an image that transports you in time. The image I am posting today, however, is straight from the here and now. In fact, just 17 days ago, to be exact. This was taken the afternoon of New Year’s Eve, standing in the most exciting city in the world (ok, my opinion…) just hours before its gigantic, blow-out, block party.  The crowds seen here covered every street, every block, every corner, up and down the entire borough of Manhattan. What attracts me to this photograph today is the unmistakable life cursing through it; the people, the sunlight, the taxis… you can almost hear and feel the bustle, the horns, the low rumble of thousands of people, all vying to occupy one extremely  small plot of metropolitan real estate. This is the real New York City. Crowded, gritty…and utterly alive! Hope you enjoy…

New York noir…

 

Sometimes you work with a seemingly ordinary image for a while and, though it’s hard to put into words, it slowly takes on new layers of meaning, and starts to communicate something  you can’t necessarily articulate. This is one of those examples. It may not appeal to everyone, but once I began playing with the shadows and the framing, the play of dark against light, all of a sudden it began to convey an essence of film noir, harkening back to the gilded age, the New York of old; one in which art deco was prolific, jazz was cool (it still is), and metropolitan shoppers flocked to Macy’s as the end-all be-all.

Just for fun, I am including a second image below, to give a better sense of scale to the scene. But I keep returning to the scene above, where dark, moody branches outline a Gothamesque landscape,  evoking the New York of days gone by. Hope you enjoy…

Clash of titans …

 

Great architecture and city sculptures are interesting subjects to photograph, but are sometimes difficult to photograph uniquely. You can pretty well assume that thousands have stood in the same spot as you, so rather than dwell on that, you end up simply finding the view that speaks to you, personally. I’ve seen this wonderful stature of Atlas, in Midtown Manhattan many times, but it was when we walked out the east doors of Rockefeller Center last week that I was struck by this framing of Atlas with the magnificent St. Patrick’s Cathedral as a backdrop. It’s not so much that it is a juxtaposition of new and old, although one embodies the delightful Art Deco style of 1930s New York, and the other is clearly a beautiful example of a nineteenth century Gothic cathedral. Rather what struck me was the symbolism of each  structure: one sacred and religious; one equally divine, yet secular. Iconic titans, staring each other down for the ages. Hope you enjoy…

In like a lion…

I took a short hiatus from posting over the holidays, spending less time on my computer and wrapped up in my pixels, and more time spent making memories with my family. Time well spent, I’d say, especially since I had the privilege of spending four days in (arguably) the greatest locale in the nation for New Year’s Eve: New York City. Four days, three nights, of hustle, bustle, crowds, lights, fireworks, shows, shopping, and walking, walking, walking… all with camera in tow, of course. One image always gives me cause for pause…passing by in front of the twin lions, Patience and Fortitude, those enduring marble icons guarding the gates of the New York Public Library, I am always struck by how majestic they appear, quietly beckoning passersby to stop, browse, or just enjoy one of the most delightful public areas in the city. More images from the city to come… hope you enjoy…

Tower of light…

 

Time to change pace… I’ve been posting images taken fairly close to home these days, but today I felt like something a little different. This was taken a couple of years ago, during my first visit to the City of Light. What a magnificent experience…I was completely taken with the sounds, light, and romantic atmosphere of this city. Tres magnifique! This shot was taken just an hour or so before we embarked on the experience every tourist must take part in when visiting Paris… yes, the long, arduous trek to the top of Tour Eiffel. In what seemed like days later, crammed elbow to elbow with several thousand fellow brethren, my family and I emerged to view what has got to be one of the most fabulous urbanscapes in existence.

 

Moments later, we traversed the elevator to the second tier, where we were rewarded, once again, with what has to be the pinnacle of the Parisienne experience…lights in every direction, sparkling like a million diamonds, at the top of the world. Hope you enjoy…

Arch rival…

Under the Double Arch

A few weeks ago I posted a few images shot while in St. Louis in and around its famous Arch. I guess I must be drawn to arches, because a week ago my family and I took off for a Sunday drive to visit another famous arch structure–this one only about 30 minutes from my home here in Williamson County, TN. I have driven under this particular arched bridge many times, but I was always on my way somewhere, and never took the extra time to circle around and really “look.” Last Sunday was that day, and boy was I treated to a view. This is the Natchez Trace Parkway Bridge, known locally as the Double Arch Bridge, a supremely beautiful structure that spans 582 feet and stands 145 tall. It won the Presidential Award for Design Excellence in 1995, and in one sweeping glance, it is easy to see why. This first image doesn’t do it justice but is a rather unique view from the bridge’s north underside. Interesting how the compression belies the true size of this structure.

From this view, the shape of the structure begins to appear, taken from just to the side and on the bridge’s north end.

Natchez Trace Parkway Bridge

Then I moved far right, to try to capture as much of the bridge as possible. The two gleaming, otherworldly arches, which look as if they have almost risen out of the earth below, are finally visible.

Finally, I mustered the courage to venture out onto the bridge, and was rewarded with this fantastic view of rural beauty. (The center speck in the sky is the hawk featured a couple of posts ago.) All in all, the afternoon was photographically, all I could have hoped for, and all just a few moments from home. Hope you enjoy…

Walkway to the stars…

Arch, Vibrant

One last image in my arch series… This time, I changed my processing technique and the image resulted in an entirely different feel. Still ghostly, but this time, almost otherworldly, very abstract. Looks a bit like a pathway to the moon… Hope you enjoy…

Ghost Arch …

Ghost Arch

Ghost Arch

I had some nice feedback from my earlier posts showing alternative views of the Saint Louis Arch so I thought I’d offer another one. This was a cool view of the Arch at dark… as you stand underneath it and look up, the floodlights below throw a spooky ghost shadow effect on the dark sky above. I composed this a couple of different ways, but really liked how the light gleamed off the steel exterior here–just enough to tell what you are looking at, but with a sense of mystery surrounding the haloed lights above. Hope you enjoy…

f/2.8, 1/30th, ISO 1600, 17 mm

Arch No. 2…

St Louis Arch May 2011

Same song, different perspective. After posting yesterday’s image I worked on one that I ended up liking even better. My eye is drawn to the curvature of the lines, as they stretch skyward 630 feet and then arc perfectly back down to the other side. Hope you enjoy…

Arch perspective…

Mostly my posts are related to nature, landscapes, and animal life, but sometimes architecture is equally inspiring. The trick is to keep pushing so that the image you end up with is something unique and artistic. Here’s a view from the base of the renown Saint Louis Arch, a unique perspective which required more than a little craning, and a wide angle, to accomplish. Hope you enjoy…