Saturday, July 30, 2011

Shadow Shot Sunday - Adaptive shadows

Shadow Shot Sunday arrives, and we hope for reflective shadows, and we seek and capture are sought and captured - providing that the ambient lighting allows for said captured.

Yesterday, I took my wheelchair minivan to the dealer * that performed the conversion and fitted me for my 2008 Dodge Caravan. The warranty squawks included wiring harness work on the power transfer seat, to replace the backup mirror camera and adjust the entry/exit ramp. While waiting, I went out back and looked over the new undelivered vans on their lot (car park). 

I brought the Canon point-and-shoot device, and hoped for brilliant sun, and resulting shadows from the overhead solar orb.

Alas, the day was overcast, a humid gray descending upon the land. A hint of brightness appeared from time to time, but any brilliance  left as suddenly as it appeared, the gray predominating.

Massive vehicular shadows that were hoped for were not there. Yet with camera in hand, more subtle shadows and reflections were sought...and sighted.

A new Grand Caravan in gray allowed the changed lighting from the sky, shadowy effects appearing in the intricate shapes from the bumper and fender (wing).

The seated photographer shows up in the first two views, clad in a red polo shirt and denim shorts.

This sighting should not be very difficult to locate on the gray van. However, in the headlight assembly on the white Chrysler, the blogger in the red polo shirt appears in two places. Since I captured it, I know where...

* - The dealer is Advanced Wheels in East Granby CT, and their only business is wheelchair vans. This is the third wheelchair van I have obtained through them since April 1996 - honorable people and always exceptional service...

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Sepia Scenes - The start of something big

Sepia Scenes takes me back a few decades, to a place of a modest beginning, that being the birthplace of the mighty Mississippi River. This is Lake Itasca state park in north-central Minnesota. 

The powerful currents move these waters from here to the Gulf of Mexico in Louisiana. Over 2300 miles/3700 kM long, the beginnings are humble, and crossing the mighty waterway by foot can only happen at the source. I was on my feet in those days and also crossed. 

I edited this in sepia, as it was taken on a day of heat, humidity and glare. The edit adds an interesting tone to the subjects crossing the river one rock at a time. See sepia in many forms at Mary's fun monochrome meme!

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Tina's Pic Story - Blue Chevy

Tina offers the fun variety meme Goodies for a Pleasant Life, and I am happy to play along in Pic Story. As described for this week, the theme is Blues: "...pure or mixed with other colors. Let your mind flow - take it easy and have fun". 

So, although my blog name is airhead due to my affection for aircraft, I like cars too - especially old ones like this 1967 Chevrolet Nova SS 327 in a color from back then described as Marina Blue metallic. So, the blue is on the auto. Although a hint of red is reflected on the wing mirror...

The photographer of course is myself. Seated in my wheelchair, I seem to become part of the story (maybe that was my aim :) Blue on the car and blue in reflection, and though we do not see it here, even the sky is blue. The suggestion was to have fun. And I did!

Monday, July 25, 2011

Ruby Tuesday - Tons of bricks

Ruby Tuesday brings me to somewhere in New Haven. I am not certain, but believe it to be in the city somewhere in the neighborhood around Trumbull Street at Orange Street.

The predominant industry around here seems to be former large homes converted into offices staffed by attorneys, CPAs or Yale University. 

All the buildings seem to be from a period of say 1890 - 1910, where details highlighted the architectural style of the era.

The rich details range from the tile roofs to Victorian gingerbread. Of course, the red brick facade qualifies as a ruby, so it is my choice.

Mary's meme is both lively and colorful in many splendid rubies. See reds in many iterations at this meme!

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Shadow Shot Sunday - Olde world shadows

Tracy, Down Under in Brisbane, graciously hosts the very fun meme Shadow Shot Sunday. We await shadowy art in all guises.

This is another scanned print that has held up well over the decades. The time is the summer of 1982 and is on a vacation trip to [then] West Germany. More specifically, the city of Cologne (Köln). I was standing on the plaza of the famed Köln cathedral, impressive itself with each of its twin spires towering to a height 577 ft (176 M). Today’s view is across the street. The architecture from long ago is so detailed, and this detailing the basis of more than a few subtle shadows…

When scanning and editing the old prints, I look for photo meme subjects, and this one was used in an earlier time. Yet, it jumped at me for its shadows, too – and shadows impress from any era. See many more shadowy events that are detailed at Hey Harriet!

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Tina's Pic Story - Bored Bear

Tina’s meme *Goodies for a pleasant life* is a fun one, especially in the weekly photo meme Pic Story. In these digital times, many photos are taken and stored on our computers – happily this meme is available to showcase our photo memories. The theme this week is open.

Full disclosure means that this photo has been seen before. Yet, still a memory that evokes a smile. And it was captured originally on film from a Pentax K1000 manual SLR camera. The print has held up well despite its age.

I snapped this at the Henry Doorly Zoo in Omaha Nebraska in 1983. The day was hot and humid, a stifling 102°F (39°C). The Polar Bear (Ursus Maritimus) was not in his/her pool, but was lying on his back. It seems as if maybe he had a bad meal or has a hangover or some malady. Which may be only an act. Real or imagined, it remains a fun pose. Despite the heat, I am happy I captured this!

Sepia Scenes - Scrumptious

Sepia Scenes takes us back to a different place (Derby CT) and time (1990). The person is, of course, Allegra. 

Our daughter enjoys her simple treat of the oft maligned pasteurized American cheese, sticky when unwrapped and a rubbery texture. 

However, she can now feed herself. After months of baby food from a jar, this an amazing treat...

The walls, stove and high chair tray were beige, so sepia is a fine edit. The main subject has perfect baby features and very fair skin. So the sepia allows her baby features stand out. She tolerates the photo chaser, concentrating instead on the yummy treat. Focus instead on the important things...

Monday, July 18, 2011

Ruby Tuesday - Fading fast

Ruby Tuesday returns as do I to one of the five boroughs in New York City.

This print is from 1961, I believe Easter Sunday, and has been seen before. The color prints of the day didn't hold up well at all, fading after 50 years as they all did then. Yet, a hint of ruby exists in my Easter suit. I don't remember much of it now, except I went shopping with my grandparents, sitting in between then in their 1961 Dodge Seneca station wagon (naturally, so seatbelts). I think the department store was Alexenders, and those of a certain age in the metro NYC area no doubt remember these. Although my memories are fading as well. A sepia edit of this scan is probably in order...

Naturally all three generations of Ralph are represented here at the apartment on 42nd Avenue in Bayside. Faded or not, ruby always abounds all over, brilliantly or fading. See Mary's fun meme!

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Shadow Shot Sunday - Monochrome back then

Shadow Shot Sunday is a fun meme hosted by photo artist Tracy Down Under in Brisbane.

Shadows were not on the mind of photographers in those days, and surely not on that of Grandpa Ralph I (the sage of Steubenville). The aim of the photo hunter was to capture the person in the moment.

When Grandpa passed away in 1981, I was awarded the Scotch carton that carried all the photos that could be captured. Not stored in optimal conditions. However, the B&W prints seem easy to fix as long as they aren't too faded.

Here it my Aunt Terry (Theresa), at a young age in the late 1940s. The flash bulbs of the day added brilliant illumination to everything in the room. So, shadows are all over...

I am sure that this was taken by a professional. Grandpa had a then state of the art, East German Exa SLR camera, with a mechanical timer. I don't think he used a tripod, though, preferring to hire a pro for a portrait.

This, like the first shot, was taken at their home at 1645 Oregon Avenue in Steubenville, my guess in the late 1950s. He was a stickler for details, and here is the 'RV' monogramed on the handkerchief in the jacket pocket. He had his initials on his cufflinks, too. This is a definitive look at Agnes and Ralph, shadows included... 

Speaking of initials, how about his 1959 State of Ohio issued license plates? 

It is 1959, and the grandparents visited the family at our home in St. Paul Minnesota. The car was a 1955 Dodge Custom Royal Lancer with the 'Red Ram' hemi V-8, and I remember the tri-tone paint on it - white, plum and black. Outstanding style that exists in memories...

The shadow of big sister Michele is the star of this frame, along with those of the Dodge's fin. The sundress, smile and blonde hair add a summer flair to the frame.

Shadows transcend eras, see lots at Hey Harriet!

Friday, July 15, 2011

Tina's Pic Story - A Tale of Two Beaches

I have found a most interesting new photo blog, Pic Story, and am happy to play along!

I named this post A Tale of Two Beaches. I did so as each picture is of the same beach, two views that seem different in character. So, a sense of perspective then is in order.

The place in question is Kalmus Beach, which is on Cape Cod, and is one of the six town beaches in Hyannis. It is not on the Atlantic, but on Nantucket Sound (no big waves on a nice day). On the ocean side of the Cape, the water temperature is barely 63° F (17.5° C), on the Sound, a much more pleasant 74°F (23° C).
The top view is of beach along the Sound. It looks calm, quiet and uninhabited. Yet below, we see the beach on the harbor from the picnic pavilion. It is busier with many people and moored sailboats. Which side of the beach do we prefer?

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Sepia Scenes - Harbor Breeze

Sepia Scenes is back, and a retrospective look at a lovely lady is in order, that being the lovely Patti.

It is a few years ago at a wedding reception. The venue for this event is on New Haven Harbor. The sky was of pastels that fell over the deck. Tall and elegant, her hair is moving in the sea breeze and her pose is striking. 

The peach and lavender sky seemed to offer a demure sky, so a light antique edit was the mere change to the original. 

The stylish Patti is leaning against the railing. Simple and sepia combine well, in both sky and subject, the day a wonderful one.

See the world of sepia at Mary's meme!

Monday, July 11, 2011

Ruby Tuesday - Queen of hats

Ruby Tuesday reappears, merely a little or maybe a lot red is the qualifier.

So, this pose qualifies. Allegra has a bit of red in her face on this breezy day neat the shore. That allows for the little bit of red on a Tuesday.

She is holding one of Patti's favorite accessories, one of her many hats that she wears these days. The red is the more substantial one today, Patti referring to this as a cloche-style chapeau. 

Our darling daughter is modeling this sort of, preferring not to wear it. Showcasing this cute hat in any fashion with a smile, (and at my lower wheelchair height) this is a fun RT subject.

For more rubies of any/all varieties, visit the fun site of Whitestone (NYC) native Work of the Poet Mary!

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Shadow Shot Sunday - Stately State Street

Shadow Shot Sunday arrives, and as always hosted by Tracy in Brisbane.

When using the family point-and-shoot camera, many a meme comes to mind, whether we are in a familiar or unfamiliar place. The fast thinking mind sees a number of meme possibilities in any edit.

Or even an unedited photo. 

Patti and I took a trip to Boston last year. The desire for breakfast brought us out of our hotel on State Street on a warm and humid yet brilliant Sunday Morning. We decided that breakfast was in order and we began a trek down the avenue.

State Street is the financial district in this city on the Bay. The banks and such are joined by many a pub with an Irish name. No doubt, after a long day of number crunching, a pub for maybe boisterous relaxation, food and drink.

That must be Monday-Friday, because nothing, including food, was open. Breakfast was why we were on State this morning - yet, shadowy architecture beckoned...

There seems to be buildings from many different eras, all unique in style. Roof overhangs, ledges and columns, among other details, allow for shadows of subtlety.

I have nothing against modern structures, as they are probably stronger and more efficient to build. And allow for shadows as well. The older buildings though offer a charm that is lacking today.

The traffic on the roads is light on this Sunday. So while hunting for brunch, we can safely cross the street and have shadows jump at us...

See the world of shadows at the fun Hey Harriet!

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Sepia Scenes - Union statuary

For Sepia Scenes, I offer a statue that sits at the junction of Broadway and Elm Street in New Haven. The monument is referred to as the Broadway Civil War Monument. It was constructed in 1905, and represents four Connecticut regiments that fought in that war. I chose a light sepia to try to evoke the time it was dedicated. Naturally, the astute viewer will notice a modern walk/don't walk light. But should we use our imaginations, we can ignore the modern conveniences and dwell on the almost period look of sepia photo from an earlier era. Modern or no, see lots of sepia at Mary's meme!

Monday, July 4, 2011

Ruby Tuesday - Stars and Stripes in the 45th state

Ruby Tuesday arrives for post on July 4, day three in 1776 that culminated with the Declaration of Independence, the decision of the original thirteen colonies to break free from England.

Thus, the modern day symbol of a free land, each stripe designated for each original colonies to the 50 stars representing each state (since 1960) in this union.

This is a flag at the homestead of my once small brother Chris in Utah, the 45th state in ruby also represented by the smaller flag out front. 

He is USAF retired, and his wife (also USAF) took the oath to protect and defend. With their background of service, this is a fine view of the flag. I like the fresh winter snow and bright clouds in the sky in the background, the ambient brilliance allows the colors to look all the more dramatic.

Rubies are all about us, reflecting objects, symbols, places and times. See them all at Mary's meme!

Friday, July 1, 2011

Shadow Shot Sunday - 25 in a flash

Shadow Shot Sunday arrives courtesy of Tracy from Brisbane. Today, we showcase a celebration last Sunday, unexpected, unplanned and unusual. An event including the lovely Patti and myself that was stunning in its simplicity on a beautiful day.
It begins for the baptism of Noah, the first child of my boss Marc and his lovely wife Teesha, a lovely couple and babe. The event was held at the beautiful set-in-stone, friendly and very accommodating St. James Church in Stratford Connecticut. This church, being in an urban setting, has parishioners of all ethnicities and races, a true mosaic of worshipers. The service was wonderful, also including a first Communion, too. But more was in store…

I like to arrive early for any event, verifying wheelchair access and seating inside. So seated at the back of the church, we were approached by the friendly Rev. Thomas F. Lynch. He asked about my issue – I said it is MD, and (pointing to Patti) the cancer treatments she is receiving. He saw Patti, left hand sans rings, and asked if we were friends. I said that actually we are married and had our 25th anniversary recently. Did we celebrate?

Not yet, but maybe after the treatments are done. He said to each of us a thoughtful prayer of blessing to each of us. Then he asked us if we had renewed our vows? See me after the baptism about this renewal. 

The baptism ceremony was held after the reading of the Gospel and was lovely. There was later a parade around of the new young Communicants, all dressed in white. At the end of the service, Father Tom said that we had a couple today with challenges in their lives (MD and cancer) who have had their 25th anniversary and would like to renew their vows. Patti looked at each other, and we ambled to the front of the congregation.

I don’t remember the exact words of Father Tom, although he no doubt has officiated over many a wedding and knows the right words. Beaming as we were, we repeated to each other the vows. And so prompted, we sealed the vows with a kiss. The tall and elegant Patti and the shorter me went back to our seats amid a thunderous applause. This renewal was very life affirming, and there is no one else I’d like to meet life’s challenges with.

There was many a camera in attendance, and the pictures are starting to be sent to us. These are the scenes we have now, and the shadows (and reflection in the marble floor) are there. I see celebrations and shadows so often go hand in hand!