When I Rode Greyhound

May 28, 2014 at 2:05 pm

Ear­lier this month, I took the Grey­hound Express from Nashville to Atlanta for a con­fer­ence. I wanted to save costs wher­ever pos­si­ble, so a rental car was out — over a week, even the cheap­est option gets really expen­sive. Also, book­ing early on Grey­hound gave quite a dis­count — it was a whop­ping $15 for a round trip ticket. 20x cheaper than fly­ing, and free bag­gage was included.

I took a taxi from the house to the Nashville Grey­hound sta­tion (Eryn was already out of town on another trip). Sur­pris­ingly high-tech for Nashville, these lit­tle Tax­iMagic appli­ances are quite handy when you want to avoid cash in taxis. Atlanta taxis could take a lesson!

Greyhound Trip, May 2014, 01

I arrived at the bus sta­tion a full hour early, which gave plenty of time to check out the clean-but-cramped space. Lines every­where, snaking around the dif­fer­ent “express” areas. A tip — you stay with your bag­gage the whole time. After I had got­ten my bag tagged, I thought they would take it to the bus, akin to com­mer­cial air travel. But no — you stay as close (or as far) from your bag as you desire, car­ry­ing it out to the bus when the time comes to board.

Greyhound Trip, May 2014, 03

Photo Exploration: New Orleans, Night. September 2013

December 31, 2013 at 2:56 pm

It is true that if you walk around any pop­u­lated area at night with a cam­era you will come away with some­thing worth­while. Yet, some places open them­selves up for trea­sure more read­ily than oth­ers. And one of those places is New Orleans.

Let’s be clear — there is more to New Orleans than Bour­bon St, more than the Quar­ter, more than the Saints and the beignets and Mardi Gras. But let’s also be hon­est — with­out that cul­ture, New Orleans would more likely be a swel­ter­ing river port, one with tourism built more on fish­ing and bird watch­ing than rev­elry and foot­ball. And while I love the rest of New Orleans (try the fries at The Delachaise), when I can walk to the Quar­ter cam­era in-hand I’ll always try to give it some time.

In Sep­tem­ber 2013 I was in the area pre­sent­ing on Glus­ter with some for­tu­nate hours to spare. I’d been want­ing to test the Fuji x100’s low­light color abil­i­ties so this was a per­fect fit. If you’ve never been on Bour­bon St at night, it is worth a trip at least once. There is the debauch­ery but there are also the restau­rants and bars, the musi­cians and staff, and the lights that keep it all visible.

Before walk­ing, I setup the cam­era for 1/125 sec­ond, f/2.8 at 3200 ISO. It seemed a good mix where it wasn’t a ter­ri­bly slow shut­ter speed, and with the lens stopped down just a bit I could still get some good low light work. The 3200 ISO is a bit of a stretch, but shoot­ing RAW gave me some qual­ity results regard­less of the high set­ting. With all of that pre­set, all that remained was to find the shots. You can see more of the work here.

New Orleans Store­front at Night. Sep­tem­ber 2013

Some­where along the street is this store. Which is very sim­i­lar to the one across the street, and one around the cor­ner. And down the way. New Orleans has bead and shirt stores like the Coast has swim­suit and sun­block stores. Only you don’t have to walk into a plas­ter shark head. I’ve never under­stood how these places don’t get items stolen con­stantly — maybe there is some­one watch­ing the front at all times via CCTV? No idea. Regard­less, they are guar­an­teed good shots for sat­u­rated color and throngs of items. I love the vari­ety — where did the Ari­zona Car­di­nal ban­ner come from? How many com­bi­na­tions of drink­ing puns are there in the world? Thing 1 & 2, Drunk 1 & 2, Trou­ble 1 & 2 side by side with lin­gerie and cos­tumes. Beads galore. All of it mixed up like a dish of hop­pin’ john.

But what really made the image for me is the fig­ure walk­ing by. I don’t think quite drunk, maybe not even tipsy. She walked more with a goal than a mean­der. Cer­tainly dressed up enough to have gone out (or be going out) but I don’t think her des­ti­na­tion had bar stools. A fig­ure of calm, mov­ing delib­er­ately among the menagerie.

Jack9 at Jack of the Wood

November 7, 2011 at 7:00 pm

My favorites from a con­cert at Jack of the Wood. It is a chal­leng­ing place to shoot — dark, no great angles, low stage — but it can also afford a lit­tle inti­macy with an unob­tru­sive cam­era. It was a great oppor­tu­nity to test the new Fuji X100 — very good low-light capa­bil­i­ties and can be basi­cally made as invis­i­ble as a film rangefinder. It was a great expe­ri­ence both with the shoot­ing and the results!