Monochrome Mondays

Well after a week off for a business trip to Las Vegas, Monochrome Mondays is back again. I’ll have to make this one shorter than normal in its description, owing to the fact that I came into about 200 emails in my absence. Not to mention the remnants of a raging cold which kept me home almost the entire weekend. On Friday as I made my way home early in the morning-by monorail, subway, then taxi, the closer I came to our neighborhood, the more I could not wait to see the first signs that I was really home. Coming up out of the subway not feeling well, tired and bedraggled, bags straining at their seams I caught my first sure sign that I was almost home. Like most places in New York City, one only has to look up to know where you are. It is no different in my neighborhood, and in any direction I can see distinctive buildings, smokestacks or water towers to guide me. But coming up out of that subway the other day and while wearily hailing a cab to take me the rest of the way, I saw the slightest glimpse of the Queensboro 59th Street Bridge. And that’s when I knew I was home for sure!

Queensboro 59th Street Bridge

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Monochrome Mondays

Well today is May 1st and spring is well and truly here. Which of course means that summer is not too far behind. Which also means it will soon be time to go to places like the one shown in this photo-Coney Island. Though much has changed there over the years, for a lot of people, those two words signal the start of yet another summer of the beach, boardwalk, amusements the Cyclone (and for baseball fans, the Cyclones), Nathan’s Famous Hot Dogs, freak shows, and lots of people watching. There is something so unique about Coney Island. When you get off the usually long subway ride out there, you just get a feeling of letting it all go,  and all the worries and problems disappear. Pictured is the famous Parachute Jump ride, which has sadly been long shut down to the public. But the unique structure still stands towering above the area, a reminder that whenever you see it in the distance, good times are near.

Coney Island

A heads up for everyone, due to a business trip to Las Vegas next week, Monochrome Mondays will return on May 15th!

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Monochrome Mondays

Well yesterday was a fabulous spring day here in New York City. My wife and I took a stroll around Flushing Meadows Corona Park and enjoyed the sunshine, glorious weather, and all the beautiful flowers and trees in bloom. For those unfamiliar, the park was twice the site of a World’s Fair, first in 1939 and then again in 1964.  It was a great chance to see the icons of this park standing up close and personal such as the Unisphere, the NY State Pavilion, and the Queens Museum. My favorite is definitely the Unisphere, designed for the 1964 World’s Fair by Gilmore D. Clarke. Though it looks impressive every time you drive by on the highway, up close it really takes on a new meaning. Representing the budding space race at the time of construction, to me it takes on an entirely new meaning these days. The entire borough of Queens is probably the most diverse area not just in New York City, but all of the United States. Perhaps even the world. Walking around on a beautiful spring day seeing people from all corners of the world barbecuing, riding bikes, skateboarding, playing soccer or even cricket reminded me that the planners of that World’s Fair chose very well indeed when they added the Unisphere to remind us we all live on this one planet.

The Unisphere

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Monochrome Mondays

Spring is officially here! Well I hope it is for most of you anyway. After being cooped up for much of the winter it is now finally time to get outside and enjoy the nice weather. I love going for long walks with my camera in hand. Where I live you never quite know what you will see. Old buildings, interesting signs or architectural details, or waterfront scenes. I love discovering all sorts of scenes like that. On one such walk a year or so ago, I found a little waterfront view near Astoria Park, in Queens. What made me grab my camera was the way the big clouds were slightly obscuring the sun, which caused some great sun beams on the water, together with the streak of sun glinting off the water and the silhouetted skyline of Manhattan in the distance. But sometimes happy accidents happen just as you are preparing to press the shutter release. And so it was that the two birds came swooping across on the left hand side, giving the photo a real sense of movement and life.

Hope you all are getting some nice weather wherever you are and taking advantage of it!

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Monochrome Mondays

Writing Soundtrack Of A Photograph for a few years now has left me with a lot of older posts in the archives. Though I like to usually share a new monochrome photograph I have taken with you all, older ones I have used from other posts in the past sometimes come to mind.  Especially if they are a favorite, which is definitely the case here. If I could choose to keep only 10 of my own photos, this would surely be one. I took it one night after work coming home on the subway. Though I passed this building every day at my old subway stop, for some reason on that particular night, the way the twin buildings were lit up really struck me, and I pulled out my camera and snapped a few shots. This turned out to be the best one, and what you see is exactly how it looked. This photo comes with no adjustments or cropping whatsoever. Enjoy your Monday everyone!

West 55th Street, Manhattan

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Monochrome Mondays

Here we go with yet another Monochrome Mondays on this first day of Spring. Yesterday was a particularly nice day and I went for a walk down some different streets in our neighborhood. While snapping various photos I was reminded that photography does not always have to be about big, epic scale type photos of landscapes or action shots. Sometimes it can just be about ‘things’. Things that may on an ordinary day mean nothing to you, but then on another jump out at you as if to say ‘Take a picture of me.’ That is what happened yesterday. Our neighborhood is a mix of small warehouses and industry along with residential areas. As I rounded a corner of a street I don’t recall having walked on before I saw this storage yard with an entire fleet of small cranes. The kind with  those jumbo tires used on small construction sites. There was something about how the sunlight was glaring off the rows of them that made me want to take some shots. Thanks to my wife for coming up with the title, which really does suit it.

Also, on a technical note for the other photographers out there, this was among the first shots taken on my brand new camera! It is a Nikon D3400 with an 18-55mm lens. I’ll also be using my new 55-200mm and the nifty 50mm lens now regularly too. After 6 years the D3100 was starting to act up and be less reliable, so I’m very excited to have new equipment again!

Symphony In Metal

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Monochrome Mondays

For the first time here on Monochrome Mondays I am cheating slightly with something that is not a monochrome shot. Well…it actually is, but it isn’t at the same time.  You see, most of these shots in this series have been fairly recent ones taken with my digital camera, when monochrome is a menu option. A few were shot on actual black and white film. Today’s choice was shot in digital…but in color. The monochrome on this Monday comes from the subject itself being (or appearing in black and white). Kind of a cool distinction to monochrome photography that the end result can appear that way, even if actually photographed in color. Anyway, this shot was taken in one of my favorite old buildings in New York City-The Customs House, which is near Battery Park. It now houses the Smithsonian National Museum Of The American Indian, but the building itself dates back to 1907. It is an absolute gem of a building, with lots of wonderful architectural features. Best of all for me is this elliptical rotunda, one of those structures that begs having a photograph of it taken every time I visit. Hope you all can get there yourself someday!

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