Before and After – That Glance

Just around the corner from Bryant Park is the main branch of the New York Public Library – the one with the lions out front! Inside is a nice small cafe – it was a lovely place for a couple of tired street photographers to rest their legs for a few minutes and enjoy a bit of liquid refreshment.

While we were waiting there, this lovely young woman came in and sat down across the room from us. The final image above – in black and white – was edited in Lightroom on my iPad, exported to the Camera Roll, imported into Snapseed, tweaked a bit further using Snapseed’s vignette and framing tools and then exported for posting on Instagram. This workflow took about 5 minutes start to finish.

Below is the original image in color straight out of my camera. It’s lovely on its own – and the slight tilt actually adds a bit of drama to the image. But I prefer the more portrait look of the black and white image.

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Before and After – Ping Pong in Bryant Park

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One of my favorite places to photograph people in New York City is in Bryant Park. Over in one corner of the park there are a couple of ping pong tables which are usually occupied by enthusiastic players. Just watching them play can be mesmerizing! Trying to capture a good image from the scene can be challenging.

In this before and after sequence, the final black and white image above was created from the original below by editing in Lightroom on my iPad. I converted the image to black and white, adjusted the color sliders to get the tonality satisfactory to my eye, and then cropped and straighten the image to eliminate the distracting elements and focus in on just the player and his intensity – about to hit the ball back across the net.

Continue reading “Before and After – Ping Pong in Bryant Park”

Amazing Grace

John Boyd - New York - 2015
John Boyd – New York – 2015

I came upon a magical moment last June in New York’s Central Park. We were walking through the park and came across this underground pavilion – with beautiful voices filling the chamber.

Turns out the Boyd family is known for singing their best in this space. It was magical to hear John sing Amazing Grace in this place – something I’ll carry with me as one of those memories you try to go back to when you just want to settle your mind down!

On the Grand Stage

On the Grand Stage - New York - 2015//embedr.flickr.com/assets/client-code.js

While I was in New York last June participating in a street photography workshop led by Peter Turnley, a couple of us wandered by New York City’s Grand Central Station. It’s a beautiful place of architectural wonder – and we were lucky to be there on a day when the sunlight was beaming down brightly onto a tiny portion of the floor.

This wedding couple was posing for their wedding pictures – and, of course, we also joined in taking our own shots as they were chatting in between shots.

I love the light in this image – it epitomizes Jay Maisel’s manta – Light, Gesture, Color!

Life’s a Rowboat

Life's a Rowboat - New York - 2015

Here’s an image from June 2015 – walking through Central Park in New York City.

As I processed this image, I first brought it into Photoshop CC 2015 and then used Topaz Simplify 4 to create a black and white simplified later – which smoothed the water and the foliage. Next I used a luminosity mask to have the simplified layer apply primarily to the darks in the image – having the lights and a bit of color punch through.

I like the effect – hope you do too!

Room with a View in New York City

Room with a View

I’m just back from a quick trip to New York City. No time for any decent street photography – unfortunately – but I caught a couple of fun shots including this one looking out my hotel room window shot with my iPhone 6.

Rebecca

Rebecca - New York - 2015
Rebecca – New York – 2015
I took this image on the last morning of our Peter Turnley workshop in New York. Rebecca was looking out the window and the natural light was just perfect for a portrait.

Shot with my Fujifilm X100T.

Abraham

Abraham - New York - 2015

Last Friday, in New York’s Central Park, we came across a father and his two sons singing hymns in this underground terrace. Their singing was majestic – and I captured a few images of them singing. This is one of my favorites – Abraham.

Exploring New York City Streets with the Fujifilm X100T

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I’m just back from a beautiful week of street photography in New York City. Here’s the story about this remarkable week.

My friend Doug Kaye and I happened to learn about photographer Peter Turnley during a visit last fall to the new Leica Store in San Francisco. Their first exhibition was of Peter’s work – and we were truly struck by his wonderful work, all displayed in black and white prints.

After that visit to the Leica Store gallery, we began learning more about Peter and his work – and about his workshops. Sometime late last year we both decided to sign up for Peter’s New York City workshop to be held in June 2015. Doug and I had thought we were pretty much done with workshops – but we both really appreciated Peter’s work so we signed up. We weren’t disappointed – this was a beautiful workshop, one which I would highly recommend.

I’m still thinking about the teachings Peter shared with us during the week – and will post more about that soon. Meanwhile, here are a few of the images that resulted from Peter’s encouragement – all shot with my Fujifilm X100T.

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The Greatest Days in New York

Central Park West - New York City - 2013

I’ve been continuing viewing Ric Burns’ New York documentary – and am now up to Episode 7 – The City and the World (1945-2000) – on Amazon Prime Instant Video.

A few minutes into this episode, David McCullough comments that if he could pick a time to be in New York, it would be at the end of World War II – in the spring of 1946 when the American troops were coming home from Europe on the great ocean liners like the Queen Elizabeth and the Queen Mary – twice a month ferrying troops back into New York City.

Ray Suarez comments that the thing about New York is that there isn’t just one thing. It’s vibrant. Pete Hamill notes that it was then still a manufacturing town. Proud guys, working guys, but troubles ahead. While New York comes out of the war on top, other forces are at work. LaGuardia ends up dying of pancreatic cancer at 64 years old – after 12 years as mayor. And the changes begin.

The back story about Robert Moses – and his beginnings described in Episode 6 – is fascinating. Robert Caro, author of “The Power Broker: Robert Moses and the Fall of New York” about Moses provides great commentary during both episodes.

I’ve got an old used book copy of The Power Broker on the bookshelf behind me. Seems like a particularly good time to pick it back up and re-read once again before I head to New York again in June.

I’m only now coming up to the description of building the UN headquarters building in New York. So much more…