Riding on a Walk Sign

Earlier this week I was very excited to be able to take a webinar class on Street Photography, as I have wanted to delve into this area of photography for awhile. I had thought that SP was narrowly defined as candid shots of people going about their everyday business. I was surprised to find that Street Photography also includes things like buildings, construction sites and dock loading equipment. That made me even happier, since I have been regularly photographing those things in addition to the photos of flowers and wildlife. But I’ve been afraid of photographing people. The instructor told us to just get out there and start. So the next day I gathered up my courage, placed myself on a busy corner with my telephoto (wearing a mask and keeping 6 feet away from other people), and started aiming my camera toward real, live, actual people.

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Like anything else, of course, I’m finding that it takes practice, especially since my telephoto isn’t quite powerful enough for some of my shots and then I need to crop, thus losing some of the resolution. And I’m having trouble getting the settings right to both blur the backgrounds, and capture the moving person, even though I know in my head the range of what those settings should be. Practice should help me improve. But I’m really pleased with the start that I’ve made. For that matter, I’m pleased that I’ve started at all, because as I’ve said, I’ve been a little afraid of photographing people. The class gave me the courage to begin.

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Photo a Day Challenge: June 27 – Balance

 

 

Families Protest the Murder of George Floyd

I am fortunate to live in Oakland, California, a very diverse city with a population of close to a half million people. Last Sunday, June 7th, along with the peaceful protests by teens and adults, there was a protest scheduled for families with young children. As it was gathering across the street from my apartment, and families were practicing good social distancing, I grabbed my camera and did some photo journaling.

The Vast Expanse of Beach and Sea

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Utah Beach, Normandy, France.

My father landed D-Day +3 on Utah Beach and survived the Second World War. Five years ago, my husband and I took a long awaited trip to France. One of the places we went was to Normandy. As I stood on this beach (the only one of the five landing beaches we were allowed to walk on), I tried to take in not only its sheer beauty, but also the enormity of what had happened here in 1944. I bent down, scooping up a large handful of sand, and held it, thinking of all the soldiers who had landed here to help liberate France and Europe. Many lost their lives in the process.

Everywhere we went in Normandy, we saw plaques, statues and museums to commemorate the beginning of the end of the war and the breaking of the Nazi’s death grip on France. I couldn’t help but be humbled by France’s gratitude.

I think the beauty, vastness and history of this beach has something to impart to us in our own troubled time. The scourge of COVID 19, like WW II, leaves us in a world with the stark differentiation of before and after. Our world has changed, never to be quite the same. I take comfort not only from the memory of the soldiers who landed on this beach, but also from the people of France. They endured great hardship and privation, yet emerged into a world they could rebuild. For me, it helps put the current #ShelterInPlace directive in perspective. Added to that I realize that while this is difficult, I am among the lucky in that my income and housing are not affected while I remain confined to my apartment, and I have access to enough food. All of that makes me think, “This is hard, but I can do this. I may at times be teary or grumpy about it, or overwhelmed, or scared, but I can do this. I must do this. It is a small price to pay to keep myself and others safe.

Posted for Tina’s Lens-Artists Challenge #90 – Distance.

A Crowd of Contractors Laying Cement

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Posted for CitySonnet’s Colors and Letters: End with the letter T and Photo a Day: Crowd for March 16.

Patterns

It’s not a surprise that patterns exist in construction. If they didn’t, you couldn’t support a roof, or build a staircase, or have walls. But watching a building in the process of being constructed helps you realize just how many patterns there are. How many patterns can you see on this rainy day?

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Posted for Jude’s 2020 Photo Challenge #5: February’s theme / technique: Being Creative with Patterns.