Tuesday, June 22, 2010


Over on my other blog there's a snap from Wall Street, so here's another from that same area.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Wall Street and Broad Street

Christie's Auction House is selling off a little bit of New York history. (The replacement signs are shown above, as snapped on Saturday).
Vintage Wall Street Sign To Hit Auction Block

Wall St. and Broad St. Original post-top style intersection street sign. Late-19th to early-20th Century.

You Can Do It

Now that's supportive.


Above: Jeremy's, the home of the very inexpensive 32-ounce beer -- served in a styrofoam cup. Try the fried clams.

Sunday, June 20, 2010


Over on my other blog I've posted a snapshot from this year's Mermaid Parade. Above: the King of the Sea.

Mermaid Parade 2010

My wife and I took the N train to Coney Island Saturday. Right off we noted a harshness to the crowds this year, for whatever reason, and soon enough thought about leaving. After standing near the parade route for a while we decided to back away to a less-crowded area. At that point, there must have been a sidewalk closed off, sending crowds streaming back at us. As the group clogged up in front of us, some decided the way out was to jump a chain link fence.

Once on the fence, one woman froze, uncertain how to get down safely on the other side. She sat atop the fence for a while, eventually completing the jump down after some "helpful" assistance. The crowd cheered when she finally made it.

Wednesday, June 09, 2010


Last night I went to the Bronx Community College Film Festival, then walked back to the train along 23rd Street in the rain. Stopped for this snapshot.

BCC Film Fest 2010

Student films tend to be .... student films. So how do you make a better experience for both filmmaker and audience? The answer: a five minute time limit. Takes away the chance to drag on. Forces the student to get to the point. Watchable, makeable. Perfect.

The films last night went beyond that, though: it was actually a good, tight set of styles, ideas and approaches. I was proud of the students I knew, and glad to see the work by the students I haven't worked with yet as well.

A fun time.

Sunday, June 06, 2010


I'm much better looking in person. So much for the funhouse mirror.

On Thursday night, I taught Session One of my six-week Seriously Fun Photography course. We covered the basics on the three elements that make up photographic exposure, then touched on ways we can use these elements to control the look of our images.

Here are my notes from the session:


The f/stops to memorize are:
f/1.4 - f/2 - f/2.8 - f/4 - f/5.6 - f/8 - f/11 - f/16 - f/22
If you forget these, make two columns, and at the top of the left one write 1.4 and at the top of the right one write 2.0. Now double each number as you go down the column (rounding off when needed).

Changing one stop lets in twice as much light (or half as much, depending on which direction you go. f/2 lets in a lot of light, f/22 lets in very little light. If you take a picture using f/8 and it seems a little too dark, switch to f/5.6. If you take a picture using f/8 and it is too bright, switch to f/11.

Shutter Speed:

The common shutter speeds:
1/1000th of a second
1 second.
Notice that the relationship of these shutter speed settings is also doubling (or halving) the amount of light that hits your sensor.

This is the ISO "speed" of a digital sensor or of film. ISO 100, 200, 400, 800, 1600 and 3200 are available on many cameras (but not all), and you should take some test shots with yours to find out if the higher ISO settings are usable or not. Figure out the fastest ISO speed you find produces acceptable shots on your camera -- you'll need to switch to it sooner or later. Notice that each ISO speed is twice as sensitive (or half as sensitive) as the next.

P = Program
A = Aperture Priority
S = Shutter Priority
M = Manual
We also addressed confirming exposure by viewing the Histogram.

Above: an iPhone snapshot taken in a subway mirror.