Saturday, October 29, 2011

Week 43 of 52

This week's theme is Shadows.  Shadows in the summer are easy to find.  Sun light, my lighting of choice, is everywhere.  The days are longer and there are many opportunities to find and create shadows.  There is a laziness to Summer that seems to allow one to watch shadows ebb and flow.  With autumn in full swing, and intermittent Indian Summer Days, the chances for finding interesting shadows are few and far between. You can pick up shadows from artificial light but I wasn't in the place of the most potential, to quote Dewitt Jones, Professional Photographer and Motivational Speaker.  Again, What's a girl to do?

With this project I was trying to stretch my creative self, get out of my rut and grow as an individual.  I did not want to shoot the mundane or the tired common photos.  Again, on the last day of the assignment, I realized that it is the photographer who has to look at a scene and see the next right answer, another quote from Dewitt Jones.  So, as the sun was setting on the last day of the assignment,  I headed the opposite direction of my home after a very long work week, to catch the shadows of the setting sun.  I didn't want just the sunset, although spectacular as it was, I wanted to look at that glorious color filled sunset and and see wondrous shadows.

As I began to shoot the sunset from Palisades Park in Santa Monica, CA, I decided to shoot in black and white, something I rarely do.  The picture you see is a result of that.  I have not liked my digital black and white photos.  I believe I have been comparing them to my film photos and miss the grays that I would see in the photos taken with film.  But by choosing to look at the sunset differently, devoid of it interpretive dance of colors, I saw a different kind of shadow, a sunset shadow.  I don't believe I could have captured this photo without shooting in black and white.  Enjoy your sunset and the beauty they hold.

Week 42 0f 52

True Beauty.  What is that?  That was the assignment for Week 42 of the MCP Project.  As I viewed some of the other entries to stimulate my creative juices, I saw photos of children from toddlers to teens, couples, puppies, kittens, sunsets...  all very Hallmark greeting card.  There is nothing wrong with that.  I was not the that sort of mood.  I had no idea of what to shoot, I just knew that  staging children, the ones cute enough to shoot, or animals was way too difficult for me to create a good photo.  So those subjects were out.  I felt I was too busy to even see beauty, let alone think of, find, and or shoot True Beauty.   I asked myself what is true beauty to me?  The phrase, "Beauty is in the eye of the beholder." came to mind when thinking of True Beauty.

The phrase, or one with the similar sentiment, first appeared in Greece in the 3rd century BC.  It has become popularity from Shakespeare's play Love's Labour Lost, 1588.

Sitting at my desk these are the thoughts that run through my mind.  This is another deadline I have to mee.  I thing that my search for True Beauty and the appreciation of it is hard when I was so busy and distracted by my work-a-day world to see it.  My thoughts, again on the last day of the assignment, was to photograph eyes, beauty is in the eye...  So, whose eyes to shoot?  And I did photograph my own with little success.  So, that left the rest of the world.  Not many strangers would allow you to shoot them in the face even if it is a camera you are using.  That is when I saw some of my co-workers on their break and I asked permission to photograph them.  As I called them into my office I explained what I was doing and why. All of them obliged.  I work with great people!  This is the one eye I chose to submit to the MCP Project group.  The others are on my flickr site it you'd like to check them out.

What this has showed me is that you can find beauty any where if you just slow down and look for it.  It was a beautiful thing for my co-workers to share a potion of themselves and their time with me for this project.  That's what is so beautiful, and I captured it in those photos.

Friday, October 28, 2011

Week 41 of 52

Week 41 was Architecture.  I love architecture.  Looking, photographing and admiring at it.   Some of my favorite styles are Arts and Crafts, buildings and furniture, Art Deco, Gothic, Mission Revival, Tuscan, Tudor to name a few.   I have taken many picture of architecture since January but the rule of this game MCP Project 52, is take a photo within the week of the assignment.  So, I had to find something to shoot.  That week, October 8 to 14, was one of my busiest.  The 11th was Back-to-School Night.  The 12th was a CUE LA (Computer Using Educators, Los Angeles) Board meeting.  The 13th was an AALA (Associated Administrators of Los Angeles) Representatives meeting.  All of these meeting were after work beginning as early as 4:30 p.m. and ending as late as 8:30 p.m.  During work hours I was attending at least three all day meetings.  And night of the 14th, I went to celebratory dinner with a friend who received a promotion.  This is why I'm tired.

I had to take my picture before midnight of the 15th. Finding the time was hard being in meetings or at functions for much of the day.  The other hindrance was the daylight.  The amount of daylight is diminishing these days.  So I am carrying around my camera like a photo journalist, as I drive to my various meeting locations throughout the city, looking for interesting architectural moments.  Well as I was leaving my Thursday night meeting I realized that the Angelus Temple was across the street.  To the best of my recollection, the Angelus Temple has columns and I sure some type of Greco-Roman style building.

I was right there are columns but the style is not Greco-Roman.  It is concerned a Modern Architecture Building.  What is Modern Architecture?  I asked the same question.  The simplest answer I found was this, "Included in Modern Architecture are a cross-section of different kinds of Modern architectural structures and this list includes most prominent buildings in the Modern architecture style." The link to that definition will also show you samples of various structures in that style.

The Angelus Temple is dedicated on January 1, 1923 as megachurch with a seating capacity of 5,300 people which was filled three times day, seven days a week.  The visionary and founder of this church and new Christian Denomination, International Church of the Foursquare Gospel, was Aimee Semple McPherson.  There are many wonderful and sandalis things surround her life and the Angules Temple. Too many to recount here.  Please follow the links.  This is an interesting story about a women around the turn of the last century.  A time when women's rights were limited and few.

So, now that you've had a brief history lesson of the a small portion of Los Angeles.  I hope you enjoy my photo, the story of how I chose to take it and the story behind the object of the photo.  Happy viewing and  looking for the new perspective.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Week 40 of 52

This week brings the theme A Taste of Vintage.  Wine was the first thought, but that was too obvious.  The other reason I didn't choose wine is because I've taken a lot of photos of alcoholic beverages.  I don't want to give the impression that I was a heavy drinker.  I do belong to a wine club that send bottles to me every other month so it would not be hard to do, just trite.  Gainey Winery in the Santa Inez Valley is where I have my membership.  I love the Santa Inez Valley.  I digress...

I thought I would visit a prop lot (a lot where props for stage and film are kept) in West Hollywood and see what vintage I could find.  So, I got up on Sunday morning and headed for the prop lot.  I love the morning light, and this was a good day for it.  I love Sunday mornings because it is quite and fewer people are out and about.  I did run into a few homeless leaving the sleeping place for their morning place.

When I arrive, the lot is still closed but the items behind the bars peeped through at who ever passed by and silently winked to be noticed.  As I looked at them through the fence there were cramped and in each others way.  I snapped a few photos of the items of vintage could reach through the tight space.  But I still felt there was more to be taken in this compact lot.  I looked and looked and was not satisfied.  I looked up and there he was, towering above everything was a god.  Neptune to the Romans and Poseidon to the Greeks, the god of the sea was standing above everything with spear in hand battling one the might sea creatures.  Can you say old?  Or is it vintage?

I took a few other photos as I said and if you'd like to see them you can at my flickr site.  Let me know what you think.

Sunday, October 2, 2011

The Lost Weeks

If you have been following my blog you will notice that there are a few weeks missing in this 52 Week Project.  After my Dad's death, the start of work and my new way of living, I've been figuring out how to juggle, order and prioritize all that there is to do.  I basically missed weeks 33 through 36.  Some of those weeks I did post to my flickr account and to the MCP Project 52.  Others I just didn't get to during that week's timeline presented by MCP Project 52.  Also, during that time, my computer died, the internet cut out and my cell phone was only working when it was plugged in.  I've been in a kind of technological Bermuda Triangle.  I think I've made it through Triangle with only a little bit of residue stuck to me.

So, here are the weeks that I missed:

Week 33 - Slow Down and Look Back

This was taken at a El Segundo Certified Farmers Market.  You have to slow down and look back to a time when things are just a littler simpler.  You stroll down the lane and peruse the wares of farmers and vendors of all kinds.  Enjoy as the musician and performers share their talent with all passers by.  Slow Down and look back. 

Week 34 - Connections

This was taken on from the Slauson Cut-off, what the Slauson exit was called back in the day.  This name comes from an old Johnny Carson routine where he played a character named Art Ferm, the Tea Time Movie announcer.   During one of the commercials, Art would give directions to a store as he points to a chart on an easel and says, "Take the 405 south to the Slauson Cut-off... "(wait for it...) "and get out and cut off your Slauson, "ba-dum-DUM"! (That's the sound of a rim shot).  I drive this on my way home from work.  This is a connection I make on my way home.  
Week 35 - Lazy

This is lazy because I didn't even get off of the ship when we pulled into port at the capital of Alaska.  This was a great cruise, I recommend it for everyone.  But I just didn't see the need to move out of bed or even get up.  No, this was not taken during week it was assigned but when I think of lazy and me, this is what I think about, getting up when I fell like it, eating when I feel like it and just hanging out until my friends get back from shore leave. 

Week 36 - Thirst for Knowledge
Who thirsted more for knowledge (" head I be scratching while my thoughts were busy hatching, if I only had a brain.") than the Scarecrow from the Wizard of Oz.  This book, along with two others were loaned to me.  These are the original copies that have been passed down from grandfather to great child.  Each generation enjoying the stories of L. Frank Baum as they were originally written.  These books had the same effect on the then turn of the 20th Century as did J. K. Rowling had on the turn of the 21st Century. 

Week 37 - Momentous Moments and Week 39 - Man vs. Nature, I have not taken yet.  I will post them as soon as I'm able.  Week 38 - The Eyes Have It was posted, as you can see.