A little nature taken in Central Park from yesterday’s NYC visit with Mike Palmer.
A little nature taken in Central Park from yesterday’s NYC visit with Mike Palmer.
Mike Palmer was in NYC this week so I made the trip to meet up with him for our very own photo walk around the city. We intended to take a class at B&H Photo but when we got there we decided to “ditch class” (Shssssh! Don’t tell Mom I skipped school!) and instead we shop around B&H. I had to control myself from walking out with a new lens and instead settled for a very small purchase of an SD card holder.
We did a lot of sightseeing, stopped in Times Square and had lunch at Hard Rock, then headed over to the International Center for Photography for the Avedon Fashion Photography exhibit (amazing work!). We ended the day wandering around Central Park. Despite the sweltering heat I had a great time!! Thanks Mike!
I edited all of the photos from today but I’m going to break up the posts throughout the week while I’m busy moving out, moving in and unpacking. After tomorrow I won’t have internet until Saturday (if I even have my computer set up by then!) Then Monday I’m off to NC so I’ll be pre-setting up some blog posts of our visit to NYC so stop back for more!
And a good ‘ol cell phone pic! (Just ignore my sweaty red face…it felt like it was 110 degrees!!)
Hand-held panoramic photo done on a visit to New York City, January 2nd, merged in Photoshop CS3.
You can click on the pano to enlarge it.
I wish I was a little more centered in the composition but this was the only place I could stand from across the way.
From time to time in between the mayhem I’ve been experiencing in my life at the present time – I get 5 minutes to spare to work on photos I haven’t had time to process. I hate when it takes this long because sometimes I forget about them…and then it gets so far away from when I took them that I just let them go. I’m trying not to do that anymore.
My goal is to leave them in my “unprocessed” drive until I get a chance to work on them even of that takes me 6 months (as these did below). These photos were taken on 1/2/09 in New York City. I have a few handfuls of others from that day that I really like but I will have to process a few here and there when I have 5 minutes (or MAKE MYSELF TAKE 5 minutes).
I LOVE LOVE LOVE lifestyle portraiture and you’ve see A LOT of that subject on my blog in the 08 & 09 posts but I equally love work like nature, landscape, architecture, wildlife, and too many other subjects to name. I wish I had more time for both but to be honest right now I barely have time to sleep let alone process work I haven’t gotten to OR get out and take new photos like these.
I have about 6 portrait/wedding jobs to begin working on or finish working on so time is limited for me right now. Unfortunately my time is torn at the present for the next few weeks until I close on both homes. Many of you know the horror of moving…pricing inspectors for the home inspection, fire safety certifications, appraisals, lawyers, realtors, meeting with movers for price estimates, downsizing a larger home to fit into a condo, packing, etc…well….couple that with my photography work, my full time job, dealing with the things that come along with the loss of a loved one (estate, etc), I have little time for me.
I make time where I can but that is usually late at night when I should be sleeping in bed for work the next morning…I guess I’ve learned to do without sleep when necessary and make up for it where I can. That’s all part of life so you gotta just “keep on trucking.”
I digress from the photos below…but I thought it might be a good idea to explain what I’ve been up to (not as an excuse for not getting the jobs processed as quickly as I promise my customers), but to at least explain where I’m coming from and that I’m doing my best!
Also, to my fellow bloggers…if I don’t make it to your blog to comment, I always try to get there and catch up! Thanks for coming by and commenting even when I haven’t been by in a bit!
After all that…here are today’s images:
Sites from the top of the Empire State Building…
You can find pigeons anywhere in NYC…even on top of the Empire State Building. This lil guy wasn’t phased by me & my lens in his face one bit.
I love how you can just make out the city below in the bokeh.
Hand-held shots with no flash in St. Patrick’s Cathedral…how MAGNIFICENT is his site!
I visited Weehawken, NJ to photograph the New York City skyline over the Hudson River this past Sunday from Hamilton Park.
I took 12 images in total and used 11 images to create this panorama (but cropped the ends some).
I wish the sky held more interest for the photo…but I’m sure I will be back there sometime soon to retry again. I really want to go back at night and do a night panorama shoot.
*CLICK TO VIEW LARGER*
Below are 2 recent canvases of my work that were printed up as gifts and ordered through Canvas on Demand.
I loved the results and wanted to share them with all of you in case you were interested in canvas prints and wanted to see more examples.
I think that printing your work on canvas gives extra life to the photo.
This is the San Diego Skyline from my recent trip to California. It’s an “gallery wrap” so the photo wraps around the edges of the canvas.
This is “I Heart NY” from December 2007. It was named because of the heart that was formed by the sun & shadows on the skyscraper on the left of the photo. That detail was something I didn’t discover until I open the photo on my computer when I got home.
This was not an image wrap. The edges were done in black.
Well I teased you with this yesterday so here is the entire story!
My childhood friend Jo Ann and I got tickets to the All Star Concert in Central Park with Bon Jovi this past Saturday. We were so excited that we actually got the tickets and were able to go!
Bon Jovi became one of the very few artists to perform in Central Park in history.
Related news stories:
Jo Ann and I attended our very first Bon Jovi concert together back in 5th grade when her Dad took us to what was, then called the “Brendan Byrne Arena” and is now “The Continental Airlines Arena” “Izod Center” aka “The Meadowlands” to us Jersey peeps! We literally sat BEHIND the stage because they were the only seats we could get. Her Dad still blames that concert for any hearing loss he now may have today! LOL!
We left my house EARLY, stopped for breakfast at Dunkin Donuts and made our way onto the highway. Before we were too far from my house I asked Jo Ann if she was sure her car’s overheating issue was fixed and if she wanted to turn around and get my car (since we were still close to home). She said no the car was fixed and that we’d be ok…famous last words! LOL!
We made it all the way down the NJ Turnpike with smooth sailing. Then we hit traffic going into the Lincoln Tunnel. If you’re not from Jersey it’s hard to understand the way you enter, what I feel like, is the longest underground tunnel ever. You go up a ramp that curves around and then you come back down another curved section of the ramp (like a roller coaster) and you hit the toll plaza.
As we inched up the curved ramp with absolutely no shoulder to pull over on and the temperature gauge hit the red zone. Plumes of smoke billowed out of the hood. People were pointing at the hood of the car to tell us about it - AS IF WE COULDN’T SEE!!
I forced someone to let us into the right lane and we had no choice but to keep driving another minute or so until the 3 lanes opened up for the toll plaza. We lucked out with a safe area to stop and carefully opened the hood of the car to find boiling coolant squirting everywhere and dripping out all over the road. We would have let the engine cool and then tried to head into the city to find a gas station but we barely had ANY coolant left.
A nice guy and his girlfriend pulled up to ask us if we needed help and I sadly replies “yes, we do.” He got out of his American Flag designed monster pick up truck labeled with the name of a towing business and he checked a few things. Of course there was nothing we could do besides let it cool down. He asked where we were going and if we wanted a “tow” back to Jersey or into the City?
We made the quick decision to accept a tow and I asked him how he was going to get us a tow and he said his truck was a tow truck. I said how??? He then amazed me with his “Inspector Gadget & Transformers” coolest truck ever. He lifted the cover on the back of the truck and out slid a crazy tow apparatus. LOL!
We jumped into the front of his truck and headed into the city to find a place to park the car.
I’m a crazy girl who thought to myself that I must capture something of this adventure on my camera phone. I should have taken her car trailing behind us out the back window but instead I took this random shot of Jo Ann and I without anyone knowing (HEY! I never said I was normal!)
After we got the car into a parking deck (and decided we’d sort out the situation later) we hopped in a cab and headed to Central Park.
The walk into the concert area took forever. We arrived around 2:30 to a sea of people on the “Great Lawn” of Central Park. It was so cool to be in the park and to look over and see the skyline in the distance.
We had over 5 hours to kill….
So…we found a spot on the grass and it seemed as if we were the only ones out of 60,000 people without a blanket or a towel to sit on. We swore the rules on the MLB website said no blankets!
We killed time by doing what else?? Taking random photos of ourselves with my camera phone and the point & shoot that Jo Ann smuggled in! (Again, the website said no cameras…but I looked around and saw a guy with a DSLR with a big ‘ol lens on it and I thought…if only I could have brought “the gun” with me! )
A collection of our boredom:
Jo Ann loves this photo because it’s like “here’s Jen looking all alone”
And then it’s like “here’s the same Jen in a giant sea of people”
We passed the time by chatting, taking photos, playing on our wonderful cell phones which made for killing time texting, picture mailing, checking email and of course they have instant messaging capabilities too (I love being “connected” LOL)!
The only food they serving were soggy Italian subs of hot dogs (ick!) so I ate Doritos and granola bars for dinner (very healthy…I know!)
We took naps on the grass, until later, when Jo Ann secured us handy plastic bags to lie on! ahaha!
We made friends with the people sitting behind us who were attending their very first Bon Jovi concert. They didn’t have a camera with them so I offered to take a few photos of them and then later email the photos to them.
8 o’clock hit and the show started. Nap time in the sun was officially over! Time to get up and rock out with over 60,000 people!!
Just look at all of us on the jumbotron! How awesome is that crowd with the skyline!
Once the concert started we had our lawn neighbors take this of us with the concert going on behind us. You can see Jon (awwww) on the jumbotron.
And since I’m a munchkin I couldn’t see anyone on stage without watching the big screen LOL!
A guy appeared in front of us who “thought” he was the second coming of Jon Bon Jovi and he had no idea what everyone behind him thought it was quite funny. Jo Ann decided to stand next to him for a few shots of her and the “look alike” to the amusement of everyone around us.
He had no idea that he was a spectacle to 20 people behind him and Jo Ann was cracking me up with various poses next to him (that’s my shadow on his back LOL).
More “take your own pics” during the concert:
This is what Jo Ann called “rockin out Jen”
And before the concert ended…they played my favorite song to hear live “Wanted Dead or Alive.”
After the show ended we walked for a HOUR to get back to the parking deck where Jo Ann’s wonderful Dad and Grandfather met us and had already added more coolant into the car. They wanted to follow us home just in case.
The car hit the red zone again INSIDE THE LINCOLN TUNNEL but the smoke never had time to appear because we made it out of the tunnel JUST IN TIME to hit the cool evening air. The thermostat went back into the “safe zone” and we made it home!
I had nothing new ready for tonight so I thought that I would post some of my favorite photos from new York City from December.
I tonemapped the single RAW image in Photomatrix.
This one is called : MUTED CITY
I call this one: I HEART NY
Let me explain why:
I got to this photo and and I stopped in my tracks when I saw the shot after tonemapping! Take a look at the skyscraper on the left! The sunlight shining on the building created a…..HEART! ! I couldn’t believe it and I felt it was really special. This was not manipulated.
This photo of Times Square has become another favorite of mine from that day mainly because I love how the sun is shining in the top left of the photo and then the light literally makes its way across the street like a spotlight.
LADY IN THE CITY
I hope you love them as much as I do!
When I get my new place I hope to blow some of these up to hang them.
If you’re interested in seeing my entire gallery of all of my HDR or Tonemapped RAW photos click here: http://www.jenrinaldiphotography.com/gallery/3868580_st8qe/1/312956580_pNjzs
I worked from home yesterday so I could get more work time in and then I picked Jo Ann at her job. We quickly ate a healthy dinner at Wendy’s *giggle* and made our trek into New York City at rush hour. I don’t recommend this to anyone but it was a necessary evil last night.
The NJ Turnpike wasn’t bad but once we got on Route 287 over by where Jo Ann works is a total nightmare (as usual) but the Route 495 that was a total jam-packed nightmare but we “rode it out” with good conversation and some good “tunes” until we got ourselves into the Lincoln Tunnel.
Once we got out of the tunnel and into NYC we noticed crowds of people standing on the sidewalk pointing up at a skyscraper behind us…we looked around but we had no idea what they were looking. I counted 6 news helicopters circling above us so we decided we needed to find out what was going on. Jo Ann rolled down her window to ask what everyone was looking & pointing at and a woman told us a guy was climbing a skyscraper. Our light turned green and we had to go, go, go. *sad face*
It turns out there was (as my friend Lee told me) a Spiderman was scaling the side of a skyscraper. Spiderman? What was he thinking??? The funny part about this tale is that Lee told me there were actually 2 people to do this in one day on the same building! 2 people??? Again, what are people thinking??
I’ll tell you what I was thinking!!! I was thinking how late we were after we had so carefully timed our trip into the city and this crazy Spiderman better not make any more traffic jams pop up for me!! But photographer in me had the devil on her shoulder thinking…. “hmmm, wouldn’t it be cool for you to pull over and photograph this crazy guy scaling the building??” but then angel on the other shoulder told me “Okay, photo journalist…you best be moving along, sister, and get to the nightclub to do what I promised!” So I did. I drove away from an interesting photo op…yup, I did (not easy for me).
The traffic made us late enough, Nancy (my GPS, mentioned here) had us going a little out of our way down the one way city streets to get to the club, and we still had to find parking in New York City! We let “Nancy” guide us to the door of the club (although she was a bit off in where she told us “we had reached our destination” … darn you Nancy). We figured we’d pass by the club and then find parking.
We were lucky….we found it one block over although it required me to do the tightest parallel park job I ever had to do on the left side of th street. I actually ended up getting a tiny knick on the back bumper of my new “ride” when I backed up just a smidgen too much (I had to take deep breaths and let it go…I had no time to panic about a small knick).
I squeezed my Rogue into the spot between a Mini Cooper and a big truck, got my gear together, locked the car, and just as we were on our way when I noticed that a giant wide-open parking spot opened right ahead of us…. hmmmm…isn’t that always my luck!
We walked one block over and our assignment for the evening started. It took me a few minutes to get my bearings straight. I hadn’t done anything like this before and I needed that 5-10 minutes to get my thoughts together, survey the land (so to speak) and make my plan of action of how I would handle the photography. Of course I hurt my finger on my own speedlight during this 5-10 minutes (don’t ask me how) but since it wasn’t cut or bleeding I was able to avoid a fainting tragedy (uuugh, don’t ask!!) in a dark nightclub filled with tons of people that that I didn’t know. We went to the restrooms and I composed myself (thank god!) and then got to work!
Outside the club some of the W Girls NYC posed for photos:
This is Tara who I know from college (Rider University ). Tara is part of the WGirls and is the person that asked me if I was interested in photographing the event so I took her up on the offer because I thought it sounded like a good experience for me:
I think it went really well considering I never shot in a dark nightclub before. Focusing was the biggest issue since it was so hard to see but I only had to throw out a handful of photos (apologies to those that don’t see their photos but know that I took one of you).
Jo Ann was kind enough to come with me into NYC to lend me a hand (thanks Jo!!).
Jo Ann and I — Yes, I actually handed my camera off to someone else…shocker!
Sunday I drove into New York City and visited B&H Photo NYC Superstore. If you don’t know it – it’s the photographer’s toy store!
I always go on Sundays and for this visit I made sure I got there early because I wanted to ensure I had a parking spot in their parking lot. It’s small with hardly any spots so I always get there at least a half hour before they open so that I get one. They guy said to me “1 hour limit and $100 minimum.” I laughed at both comments. I knew I would never be an hour…not in this place! And I knew I was spending WAY MORE than $100.00! It worked out just fine.
The first thing I had to do was return a couple items from a previous shipment and I hung out on the sidewalk by the door while I waited for them to open at 10:00am on the dot.
After I was done I headed in. They have a ton of greeters at the door welcoming you like crazy. (I’m sure they like to make you feel special so you’ll spend the big bucks! *giggle* Well they got me – because I emptied my bank account! I need to take up a cheaper hobby…this one is EXPENSIVE!
If you’ve ever been to Atlantic City or Vegas (or any casino for that matter) you may feel a very similar feeling when you’re at B&H. Once you walk in you’re in a wonderland where time stands still and you have no idea how long you’ve been wandering around the store. I always feel that way in A.C. (where you’re not sure if it’s an hour or 10 hours that you’ve been there!)
This time for me was even stranger because I made my familiar right turn and ended up in unfamiliar territory! Oh my goodness! They rearranged the entire superstore! I was LOST and unfamiliar in a normally familiar place! LOL! Such a tragedy! *giggling* I walked around aimlessly on the first floor looking for the Nikon station. After reading all the signs and aimlessly wandering the floors I realized I had to go all the way upstairs and around the bend to find the “pros.”
Nikon is the first one you hit and there I found my favorite Nikon rep, “Gerry.” He was talking to a soldier so I patiently waited to speak to him once they were done. I had my “list” (you always need your list or you will soon be overwhelmed) and you also need a plan of action in massive place like this (So I’m organized! Now don’t laugh at me!) If I didn’t want to spend 5 hours there (and not get reprimanded by the parking attendant…kidding) I had to have a list and plan of action (I was also meeting my friend Lee for lunch afterwards so I needed to move fast for that too).
I discussed a number of kinds of things with Gerry – from wide angle lenses, to battery packs, to backdrops, to carrying bags. I always enjoy talking to him because he’s so helpful and honest. After I left Gerry I went on my journey around “wonderland.” I started with the the wide angle lens I wanted. Gerry and the rep behind the counter both convinced me to go with the TOKINA 12-24mm (I hope I made the right decision). I tested it for a few shots while I was in the store…not sure what these test shots really even told me but I took them anyway LOL.
I decided to go with the Tokina based on my forum friend and the 2 reps from B&H’s recommendation. I haven’t taken anything with it and I got it yesterday (I know…surprising…but I just wasn’t in the mood today).
After I ordered the lens I headed over to the “bag” section and ordered a Pelican rolling suitcase for photo jobs. It looks like carry-on luggage and has wheels and a detachable laptop piece which is an added bonus (I hope I like it when I get it). I’m so paranoid about bags because they never seem to totally satisfy me. I’m already up to 4 different camera type bags of varying sizes. The worst part about the amount of time I spent picking out a bag was the fact that the rep mistakenly didn’t add it to the order properly and I never got it with my order yesterday. It was a blessing in disguise because I didn’t go with the original one he showed me. The other blessing was that B&H had free shipping on this bag when I went to order it today (so I didn’t have to worry about calling to argue an additional shipping charge with B&H).
After the bag selection I headed over to the used section with NO LUCK. I was looking for a used power pack or a flash meter. They had neither for me so back on line AGAIN to order the Seconic flash meter. Even though Gerry’s didn’t suggest it I also ordered one Nikon SD-8A Battery Power Pack. I can’t afford a better one so I had to go with this option (especially for the charity event I’m doing tomorrow night where I will need all flash-all night).
Lastly I headed downstairs to the lighting section and ordered a GIGANTIC roll of super white seamless paper. It’s so massive huge that it went from the back of my SUV to the dashboard. You should have seen it when I had to get it from from my work (where I had shipped it to) into my car. I can’t even stand it up in my house…it has to lean… LOL. I’m not going to be taking it around with me to photo jobs (I’ll have to get something smaller) but I want to have it at home for clients to come here. Once I clear out my spare room of some boxes I will make my studio there. Then clients will have the choice to come to me if they’d like. I can’t wait to experiment with the paper and colored gels, etc!
I also ordered a Hakuba 400 Pro Series bag for my 2 light stands, 2 umbrellas, and my tripod. I filled it and it worked out really well and so far I am happy with it. My goal is to be very portable and not make a hundred trips to the car with on-location photo jobs. Now I will be showing up with a rolling suitcase with camera gear, a long bag with the backdrop stand, and a long bag with the lighting stands/umbrellas/tripod/backdrop and that’s it! It should be great and save me time to have everything together and bring it in and out of the houses/locations quickly!
The lighting rep talked me out of the mini softbox for my SB800 and said that I’d be much happier with my Gary Fong diffuser. I DID NOT get a black backdrop like I wanted to because they just aren’t large enough for what I want (that really gave me a sad face because I can’t deal with my wrinkly muslin!). Back to the drawing board on a black backdrop (on the cheaper side…maybe a king size blanket).
So, all in all, the trip was good but slightly frustrating for an organized girl with a list! Everything I thought I would walk away with was changed up and I felt like I had to make a lot of split second decisions. I hate when my list and organization doesn’t pan out like I expected but what are you gonna do!?!
Lee met me at the end, I paid for my items, and headed out to get an amazing parking spot right in front of the restaurant he chose for us (Borough Food & Drink) and I had the BEST cheeseburger with cheddar cheese (and fries) ever! It was excellent!
Tonight I edited some of the New York City photos I took last Saturday.
When it came to the architectural shots I tonemapped the single RAW image to get some great simulated HDR shots.
I got to this photo and and I stopped in my tracks when I saw the shot after tonemapping!!! Take a look at the skyscraper on the left! The sunlight shining on the building created a…..HEART! I couldn’t believe it!! This was not maipulated!!! I completely LOVE it!
I’m calling it: I HEART NY
Some other favorites from NYC from this editing session:
Some people shots I really liked:
I couldn’t decide between the following 2 effects on this photo: