an everyday photo, every day | photography • art • poetry

Posts tagged “night photography

Main Street at Twilight

Main Street at Twilight
Main Street at Twilight

Main Street at Twilight

The first block of East Main Street in Carnegie, PA at dusk.

I have no idea how my little hand-held digital metered the colors like this, but I heartily approve! Honestly, this is not touched up in any way, even though the sky looks as if I either added from another photo, I adjusted the color in that area or I just painted in another sky. The whole thing looks like a movie set.

The time of day was twilight, after the sun dropped below the horizon but still reflected on the sky and the thin overcast of clouds. I know I pointed my focus spot on the darkest area in the scene, way down at the other end of Main Street, the building that is actually on a hill in the next community, and that would have influenced the internal metering especially since the scene looks very bright although it’s only the street lights that provide illumination. I can assure you they are not that bright.

And likely the yellow lights also pushed the complementary blue of the sky a little brighter than it actually was. However it happened, I approve.

This was taken with my little Lumix point and shoot where I have very little control, but the other settings that would have influenced this outcome are two I’ve always set on these little cameras. First, I turn the stabilizer mode, which will help to eliminate blurriness in low-light conditions, to “off” because in these small cameras it simply changes the ASA setting to a higher number. This results in a photo that looks great in your view screen, but when you open it up on your computer it’s completely grainy. I use a tripod, or, as in this case, I find something to set the camera on or press it against and set the shutter for a 2-second timed delay so that everything is as still as it’s going to get when the shutter finally opens.

Second, I set the EV, or exposure value, setting two or three steps below the middle. Most cameras shoot light so that as much light as possible gets into the lens, but you also lose detail in the highlights and I find it doesn’t meter well for images with a lot of contrast, which is usually what attracts me.

So, I guess that’s how this one turned out like this.

. . . . . . .

Purchase a canvas or a print of this image

canvas print of main street

Canvas print of “Main Street at Twilight”

Canvas print

This 16″ x 32″ canvas print is beautifully printed in archival inks on artist canvas and gallery wrapped around 1″ stretchers. Sides are finished in black. You can find it in my Etsy shop.

I can also prepare a digital print in a variety of styles and sizes.

 

. . . . . . .

All images used on this site are copyrighted to Bernadette E. Kazmarski unless otherwise noted and may not be used without my written permission. Please ask if you are interested in using one in a print or internet publication. If you are interested in purchasing a print of this image or a product including this image, check my Etsy shop or Fine Art America profile to see if I have it available already. If you don’t find it there, visit “purchasing” for availability and terms.


On The Bridge

On The Bridge
On The Bridge

On The Bridge

On the bridge. It’s that odd glowing light and the stark shapes of the bench and post and paved street and wall, the darkness beyond, that makes it seem like it may be an execution.

Another from Instagram

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All images used on this site are copyrighted to Bernadette E. Kazmarski unless otherwise noted and may not be used without my written permission. Please ask if you are interested in using one in a print or internet publication. If you are interested in purchasing a print of this image or a product including this image, check my Etsy shop or Fine Art America profile to see if I have it available already. If you don’t find it there, visit “purchasing” for availability and terms.


Dairy Queen in the Dark

Dairy Queen in the Dark
Dairy Queen in the Dark

Dairy Queen in the Dark

I love that good old-fashioned look of the Dairy Queen, primary colors, nice clear shapes, that late-50’s slight upward angle of the roof and outward angle of the windows.

The night I took this photo it had rained and was hot and humid, and the Dairy Queen beckoned from the dark in the middle of nowhere along a deserted road. The night was dreamy enough and the road dark enough that it almost seemed the DQ was an illusion, and either I’d pull in and it would turn into something else or disappear altogether, or it was a trap, a portal to another dimension and I’d enter some dramatic scenario as in some of the stories I enjoy.

But I just enjoyed a medium vanilla with chocolate dip, really enjoyed it. It’s been a while. Maybe that’s why the DQ magically emerged.

I love photos of rainy nights and have a whole gallery of photos called “At Night in the Rain”.

. . . . . . .

All images used on this site are copyrighted to Bernadette E. Kazmarski unless otherwise noted and may not be used without my written permission. Please ask if you are interested in using one in a print or internet publication. If you are interested in purchasing a print of this image or a product including this image, check my Etsy shop or Fine Art America profile to see if I have it available already. If you don’t find it there, visit “purchasing” for availability and terms.


Primary and Secondary Colors

building with evening lights
building with evening lights

Lights in Primary and Secondary Colors.

The traffic lights add red and green to the blue and yellow and orange of the lights in the Greyhound station in downtown Pittsburgh; the dusk adds purple to the building. All colors are present.

I took this with my smartphone, hence the extreme proportions of the building, and the crosshatches made by the lights. Usually I am frustrated by these compositional failings with my camera, but this time they were welcome.

. . . . . . .

All images used on this site are copyrighted to Bernadette E. Kazmarski unless otherwise noted and may not be used without my written permission. Please ask if you are interested in using one in a print or internet publication. If you are interested in purchasing a print of this image or a product including this image, check my Etsy shop or Fine Art America profile to see if I have it available already. If you don’t find it there, visit “purchasing” for availability and terms.


Not Quite Full, Not Quite Empty

moon in bare tree branches
moon in bare tree branches

Not Quite Full, Not Quite Empty

The not-quite-full Beaver Moon shines through the not-quite-empty wild black cherry branches on an early November night.

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For a print of any photo, visit “purchasing” for availability and terms. 


Partly Cloudy

supermoon with clouds

 

supermoon with clouds

Partly Cloudy

I have so many photos of the full moon and the supermoon they all look the same, so I decided to try something a little different last night and catch a few clouds too. I see streaks of ambient color in the background because I shot this one pretty dark to get the detail in the moon, but not so dark that I lost the clouds. Almost okay.

. . . . . . .

For a print of any photo, visit “purchasing” for availability and terms.

All images in this post are copyright © Bernadette E. Kazmarski and may not be used without prior written permission.


Main Street at Twilight

main street in carnegie at twilight
main street in carnegie at twilight

Main Street at Twilight

The first block of East Main Street in Carnegie, PA at dusk.

I have no idea how my little hand-held digital metered the colors like this, but I heartily approve! Honestly, this is not touched up in any way, even though the sky looks as if I either added from another photo, I adjusted the color in that area or I just painted in another sky. The whole thing looks like a movie set.

The time of day was twilight, after the sun dropped below the horizon but still reflected on the sky and the thin overcast of clouds. I know I pointed my focus spot on the darkest area in the scene, way down at the other end of Main Street, the building that is actually on a hill in the next community, and that would have influenced the internal metering especially since the scene looks very bright although it’s only the street lights that provide illumination. I can assure you they are not that bright.

And likely the yellow lights also pushed the complementary blue of the sky a little brighter than it actually was. However it happened, I approve.

This was taken with my little Lumix point and shoot where I have very little control, but the other settings that would have influenced this outcome are two I’ve always set on these little cameras. First, I turn the stabilizer mode, which will help to eliminate blurriness in low-light conditions, to “off” because in these small cameras it simply changes the ASA setting to a higher number. This results in a photo that looks great in your view screen, but when you open it up on your computer it’s completely grainy. I use a tripod, or, as in this case, I find something to set the camera on or press it against and set the shutter for a 2-second timed delay so that everything is as still as it’s going to get when the shutter finally opens.

Second, I set the EV, or exposure value, setting two or three steps below the middle. Most cameras shoot light so that as much light as possible gets into the lens, but you also lose detail in the highlights and I find it doesn’t meter well for images with a lot of contrast, which is usually what attracts me.

So, I guess that’s how this one turned out like this.

. . . . . . .

Purchase a canvas or a print of this image

canvas print of main street

Canvas print of “Main Street at Twilight”

Canvas print

This 16″ x 32″ canvas print is beautifully printed in archival inks on artist canvas and gallery wrapped around 1″ stretchers. Sides are finished in black. You can find it in my Etsy shop.

I can also prepare a print in a variety of styles and sizes.

This photo is also available as a print in my gallery on Fine Art America.


Pittsburgh at New Year’s

Pittsburgh at New Year's, 2008

Pittsburgh at New Year’s, 2008

It’s snowing and I’m not going to First Night, but I thought I’d post two of the photos I took of Pittsburgh, viewed from Mt. Washington, taken on New Year’s Eve a few years ago.

pittsburgh at night

Pittsburgh at Night

I don’t know why it’s always captivated me, but Pittsburgh at night, the modest buildings lit just right, bridges decorated with lights, all reflected on one river or another, has always been one of my favorite scenes. I took this series of photos and created a panorama on Monday night about 9:15, so many of the office buildings weren’t as well lit as they would have been earlier in the evening, but I never pass up a chance to stop on Mt. Washington to photograph the city.

This view is of “First Side”, along the Monongahela River right before it reaches the point; off to the right a little past center is the Smithfield Street Bridge, then in the darkness over the river is one bridge after another—Panhandle, Liberty, 10th Street, Birmingham, Hot Metal, then the bend where J&L Steel used to fire the night sky with an orange glow.

But even before that bend in the river, this little cluster of buildings coming to a point where a great river is born is all of downtown Pittsburgh.


Holiday Lights

photo of christmas lights in snowy pine
photo of christmas lights in snowy pine

Holiday Lights

Whatever holiday you celebrate, the return of the light is a part of it. Happy Holidays everyone!


Pittsburgh at Night, 2011

pittsburgh at night
pittsburgh at night

Pittsburgh at Night

I don’t know why it’s always captivated me, but Pittsburgh at night, the modest buildings lit just right, bridges decorated with lights, all reflected on one river or another, has always been one of my favorite scenes. I took this series of photos and created a panorama on Monday night about 9:15, so many of the office buildings weren’t as well lit as they would have been earlier in the evening, but I never pass up a chance to stop on Mt. Washington to photograph the city.

This view is of “First Side”, along the Monongahela River right before it reaches the point; off to the right a little past center is the Smithfield Street Bridge, then in the darkness over the river is one bridge after another—Panhandle, Liberty, 10th Street, Birmingham, Hot Metal, then the bend where J&L Steel used to fire the night sky with an orange glow.

But even before that bend in the river, this little cluster of buildings coming to a point where a great river is born is all of downtown Pittsburgh. See other photos I’ve taken of Pittsburgh


Main Street at Twilight, 2011

main street in carnegie at twilight
main street in carnegie at twilight

Main Street at Twilight

The first block of East Main Street in Carnegie, PA at dusk.

I have no idea how my little hand-held digital metered the colors like this, but I heartily approve! Honestly, this is not touched up in any way, even though the sky looks as if I either added from another photo, I adjusted the color in that area or I just painted in another sky. The whole thing looks like a movie set.

The time of day was twilight, after the sun dropped below the horizon but still reflected on the sky and the thin overcast of clouds. I know I pointed my focus spot on the darkest area in the scene, way down at the other end of Main Street, the building that is actually on a hill in the next community, and that would have influenced the internal metering especially since the scene looks very bright although it’s only the street lights that provide illumination. I can assure you they are not that bright.

And likely the yellow lights also pushed the complementary blue of the sky a little brighter than it actually was. However it happened, I approve.

This was taken with my little Lumix point and shoot where I have very little control, but the other settings that would have influenced this outcome are two I’ve always set on these little cameras. First, I turn the stabilizer mode, which will help to eliminate blurriness in low-light conditions, to “off” because in these small cameras it simply changes the ASA setting to a higher number. This results in a photo that looks great in your view screen, but when you open it up on your computer it’s completely grainy. I use a tripod, or, as in this case, I find something to set the camera on or press it against and set the shutter for a 2-second timed delay so that everything is as still as it’s going to get when the shutter finally opens.

Second, I set the EV, or exposure value, setting two or three steps below the middle. Most cameras shoot light so that as much light as possible gets into the lens, but you also lose detail in the highlights and I find it doesn’t meter well for images with a lot of contrast, which is usually what attracts me.

So, I guess that’s how this one turned out like this.

This photo is available as a print in my gallery on Fine Art America. I can also prepare a print in a variety of styles and sizes.


Summer Festivals, 2009

A Date at the Fair

A Date at the Fair

Those old-fashioned street fairs are fun in the daytime, rides turning in the heat of August, too much cotton candy and pop taking their toll…but for all their fun in the day, they are magical at night, the lighted rides turning against a starry sky, the attractions an oasis of colorful neon and incandescent in the midst of an inky darkness of streets, then just as suddenly as it sprung from nothing in a parking lot, it’s gone, leaving only darkness and cool September nights.

In this photo, a couple on a date wanders toward the rides.

From back in my first year of photo blogging! This event is coming up again, and I hope they have the rides for great night photos.


The Duchess at Night

The Duchess

This is the Duchess, one of the boats of the Gateway Clipper Fleet in Pittsburgh. As I was leaving an event the other night, there she was, reflected in water behind the dock, near the shore where the surface ripples are gentle and fairly large. Those yellow party lights give it a carnival atmosphere and gently light objects around the boat.

There was a very bright spotlight on the top deck, though, and it not only threw off my light metering, but it was so bright that it was distorted and hazy and reflected too brightly on the surface of the water. No matter how I tried to tame it down, it would have no taming, being painfully bright even when I looked at it in my view screen on the back of the camera.

So I edged over until it was behind the docking station and pressed my camera against the uprights of the little walkway that carried us over the channel behind the dock, and there was this photo.

Night photography is a favorite of mine. The contrast of bright and colored lights against the darkness is so visually appealing, and the patterns of light and dark change a familiar landscape into an entirely new world.

Just add water and you have another element to add to the illusion, reflections distorted and broken apart by even the slightest movement in the water.


Magnolia House

photo of house at dusk

Magnolia House

My neighbor’s house featuring their most perfect magnolia, at dusk.

Even on a rainy day the clouds broke at the end of day and at dusk there was enough reflected sunlight to enjoy another springtime turquoise sky although the day was actually much darker than appears here. The time is late enough that the streetlights are on casting their warm pink glow onto the magnolia and corner of the house, while all else is cool and blue.

I find it interesting how a digital camera captures this scene; a film camera would have captured only the directly-lit house and tree but the other houses and sky would have been mere shadows in the dusk.

But I also liked to focus on what caught my eye in the first place, the house with its brightly-lit window, and the magnolia tree and its long slightly smeared indigo shadows on the house.

house at dusk

Magnolia House 2


Blossoms at Night

Pear Trees at Night

Blossoms at Night

The pear trees along Main Street in Carnegie are blooming already. Here it looks as if each tree has its own inner light. The row of mature and well-shaped trees look airy and elegant against the turquoise dusk sky of a spring evening.


Two Photo Exhibits

library building on hill

The Jewel on the Hill, Andrew Carnegie Free Library & Music Hall

I’ll take a break from my regularly-scheduled photo today to tell you about my two exhibits of local photography. “Of Harps and Fig Leaves” and “Carnegie Photographed”, are once again on display in the Reception Hall at Andrew Carnegie Free Library & Music Hall. Stop by to peruse them and read the notes on the photos, or if you aren’t local, I have provided links to slide shows of each of the exhibits. Photos are for sale, and each sale benefits the ACFL&MH Capital Campaign.

Of Harps and Fig Leaves, an Exhibit of Photographs

This exhibit of sixteen of my color photographs of Andrew Carnegie Free Library & Music Hall includes a variety of views, from grand and distant to detailed and intimate. The exhibit opened for the 2010 benefit event on October 2, Marianne Cornetti Returns, and will hang in the Reception Hall as a permanent exhibit between other shows and exhibits. The Reception Hall is open during regular hours; please visit www.carnegiecarnegie.org for more information and directions. I have also included a list of the included images, below, with a link to a brief slideshow of the images.

The genesis of the show

detail of furniture

"Clawfoot", detail of the original organ bench and replica carpet in the Espy Post.

When I bought my first camera, a Pentax K-1000, one of my first subjects was Andrew Carnegie Free Library & Music Hall. I lived two doors down, I was practicing with black and white film, and the massive, elegant building surrounded by tall trees was a feast for my eyes.

I’ve been visiting this place for books since before I can remember, but even today looking at the shelves of books interspersed with the tall Corinthian-topped pillars I can still remember feeling very small standing in the quiet of the big room and thinking it was the grandest place that could ever exist.

As an adult, when I began to return again for books, I also began wandering into as many rooms as I could gain access to, enjoying what is now the Reception Hall on a sunny winter afternoon, peeking into the darkness of the Music Hall, imagining myself on the stage.

As renovations began and I was spending more and more time here, all the memories combined with all the activity and inspired an exploration of the space recorded in photos using my new Pentax camera a digital SLR K10D.

library entrance

"Grand Entrance", those limestone pillars and doorway have stood the test of time.

About the Photos

The photos include “The Jewel on the Hill” shown above, one we’ve used repeatedly as the signature image for the facility. Each photo has a story of its own genesis, but this one in particular was a real stroke of luck and timing. I was walking home on a clear, warm spring dusk in late April, 2005, April 24 to be exact, and arrived at the bottom of Library Hill at just this moment. The sky was fading from brilliant turquoise to cobalt, the still-bare trees were etched against it in silhouette, and the grand building itself stood partially lit by the sunset but with all interior and exterior lights on, solid and stately, serving its public in its 104th year. By the time I had snapped a half dozen or so shots the light had changed completely and the moment was gone. That was part of the timing, the other part that they had only temporarily installed the foundation lighting but never used it again,a nd this was part of what gave the building that lovely definition against the dark hilltop. A few minutes earlier or later, the previous or following week, and this photo would never have existed. And it was taken with my first little point-and-shoot 2MP digital camera, I don’t know how it came out as clearly as it did!

Here is a list of the names of the photos in the show, and you can view a quick little slideshow of them here. But you’ll have to visit the Reception Hall to really see them and know the rest of the stories.

1. Grand Entrance, 2003
2. The Jewel on the Hill, 2005
3. Welcoming on a Winter Night, 2008
4. Familiar View, 2007
5. Overarching, 2008
6. Clawfoot, 2010
7. Of harps and Fig Leaves, 2006
8. Hats, 2009
9. Autumn Expectations, 2009
10. Party on the Stage
11. Cubbage Hill, 2009
12. Champagne Reception, 2008
13. Book Stacks, 2005
14. View of Carnegie, 2008
15. The New Seats, 2009
16. Classic Curve, 2007

————————————————————
carnegie photographed logo

“Carnegie Photographed” Photo Exhibit

main street carnegie pa

Spring Dusk on Main Street

This exhibit includes fourteen of my photographs of the town of Carnegie in all seasons, from details to distant views. The exhibit will hang in the Reception Hall as a permanent exhibit between other shows and exhibits along with “Of Harps and Fig Leaves, images of Andrew Carnegie Free Library & Music Hall”.

Two Shows in One Room

gallery with musicians

The Night Gallery, 3rd Street Gallery exhibit and jazz

Once we had “Of Harps and Fig Leaves” hung in the room, ACFL&MH executive director Maggie Forbes suggested this show to fill the other walls of the room. The 3rd Street Gallery hosts a show entitled “Carnegie Painted” each year, and as a central point in the community, the Reception Hall of ACFL&MH has been host to paintings from that show through the years. I certainly have enough photos of Carnegie to fill a few rooms, and, as with Harps and Fig Leaves, I had a difficult time choosing only 14 images.

All the photos are 11″ x 14″ framed with white mats and black 16″ x 20″ frames and the consistency of the exhibits in the big room, all photos, same mats and frames, is very appealing.

About the Show

snow falling in cemetery

Softly Falling Snow, Ross Colonial Cemetery on Library Avenue

A camera of some sort goes with me everywhere, and by living and working here in Carnegie, plus a good bit of walking and bicycling the subject of my photos is often my little town.

From local newspapers to Carnegie’s website and map, my photos have often been used to illustrate Carnegie, capturing Main Street at dusk or the Memorial Day Parade, a detail of everyday life gone unnoticed, or a hidden treasure I’ve found while exploring.

A news photo, those used for publicity, is different from an art photo. While many of the photos I have on f ile are perfect for a quick glance in print or web they’re not always the best subjects for permanently-placed enlargement to be seen and studied in detail.

It’s truly been my pleasure to browse six years of photos and choose 14 which I hope will illustrate the familiar beauty of the streets we travel every day.

photo of carnegie from above

Good Night Little Town, a view of Carnegie from a nearby hill

About the Images

The image at the top, “Spring Dusk on Main Street”, is one of my favorites and I think shows the quaint appeal and openness of Carnegie’s Main Street. The decorate street lights are on sensors and come on automatically at dusk, but each of them comes on at a different time. I wanted to catch that pure turquoise sky with enough light to see its color, but not all the lights were on when the sky was best. I had to stake this one out, and returned to Main Street three times during this week to make sure I got the one photo where all the lights are on and the sky is perfect.

Here is a list of the names of the photos in the show, and you can view a quick little slideshow of them here. But you’ll have to visit the Reception Hall to really see them and know the rest of the stories.

Amid the Gold
Banners and Flowers
Good Night Little Town
Icy Berries
Last Day of the Year
Memorial Day
Ornaments
Softly Falling Snow
Spring Dusk on Main Street
Superior
Sycamore Sentinels
Tangled Shadows
The Night Gallery
Welcome

Hours for the exhibit

The Reception Hall is open during regular hours; please visit www.carnegiecarnegie.org for more information, directions and contact information. Remember that these exhibits hang between other exhibits and events at ACFL&MH, so please contact me or call Library to be certain the exhibits are up.

Framed prints size and availability

Each image is 11″ x 14″ matted with a plain white mat in a 16″ x 20″ matte-finish black frame. The photos on display are the property of Andrew Carnegie Free Library & Music Hall, but you can purchase a framed print. Prints are for sale at $75.00 each, and a portion of every sale supports the Andrew Carnegie Free Library & Music Hall.

Canvas prints size and availability

These images are a full 16″ x 20″ printed on quality canvas and gallery-wrapped on canvas stretchers (the canvas wraps around the stretchers and is printed all the way around) for a clean, modern look. Canvas prints are not on display, but you can purchase one by specifying you’d like the canvas print. Canvas prints are also for sale at $75.00 each, and a portion of every sale supports the Andrew Carnegie Free Library & Music Hall.

You can purchase them directly through the Library & Music Hall or contact me with your interest.

Again, the slideshows…

Of Harps and Fig Leaves

You can view a quick little slideshow of them here.

Carnegie Photographed

You can view a quick little slideshow of them here.


Pittsburgh at Night

pittsburgh at night

Pittsburgh at Night

I don’t know why it’s always captivated me, but Pittsburgh at night, the modest buildings lit just right, bridges decorated with lights, all reflected on one river or another, has always been one of my favorite scenes. I took this series of photos and created a panorama on Monday night about 9:15, so many of the office buildings weren’t as well lit as they would have been earlier in the evening, but I never pass up a chance to stop on Mt. Washington to photograph the city.

This view is of “First Side”, along the Monongahela River right before it reaches the point; off to the right a little past center is the Smithfield Street Bridge, then in the darkness over the river is one bridge after another—Panhandle, Liberty, 10th Street, Birmingham, Hot Metal, then the bend where J&L Steel used to fire the night sky with an orange glow.

But even before that bend in the river, this little cluster of buildings coming to a point where a great river is born is all of downtown Pittsburgh.


We Have Arrived

We have arrived.

Our shadows long as night falls and jack-o-lantern eyes begin to glow, Rayni and I make our entrance at the Night Walk. Look out everyone for the Punk and the Jester


The Alley at Night

alley at night

Alley at Night

Something about the light cast by a streetlight on the plain, simple side of a building, so full of mystery, yet it’s just the house on the corner.


Main Street at Twilight

main street in carnegie at twilight

Main Street at Twilight

The first block of East Main Street in Carnegie, PA at dusk.

I have no idea how my little hand-held digital metered the colors like this, but I heartily approve! Honestly, this is not touched up in any way, even though the sky looks as if I either added from another photo, I adjusted the color in that area or I just painted in another sky.

The time of day was twilight, after the sun dropped below the horizon but still reflected on the sky and the thin overcast of clouds. I know I pointed my focus spot on the darkest area in the scene, way down at the other end of Main Street, the building that is actually on a hill in the next community, and that would have influenced the internal metering especially since the scene looks very bright although it’s only the street lights that provide illumination. I can assure you they are not that bright.

And likely the yellow lights also pushed the complementary blue of the sky a little brighter than it actually was. However it happened, I approve.

This was taken with my little Lumix point and shoot where I have very little control, but the other settings that would have influenced this outcome are two I’ve always set on these little cameras. First, I turn the stabilizer mode, which will help to eliminate blurriness in low-light conditions, to “off” because in these small cameras it simply changes the ASA setting to a higher number. This results in a photo that looks great in your view screen, but when you open it up on your computer it’s completely grainy. I use a tripod, or, as in this case, I find something to set the camera on or press it against and set the shutter for a 2-second timed delay so that everything is as still as it’s going to get when the shutter finally opens.

Second, I set the EV, or exposure value, setting two or three steps below the middle. Most cameras shoot light so that as much light as possible gets into the lens, but you also lose detail in the highlights and I find it doesn’t meter well for images with a lot of contrast, which is usually what attracts me.

So, I guess that’s how this one turned out like this.


Intermezzo

outdoor courtyard at night

Intermezzo

At intermission during the Living Room Concert I mentioned yesterday everyone got up and walked around the house and grounds, including this wonderful little courtyard. I loved the light falling from above and inside, the details of the wisteria and the upper deck railing, the people minimized and all part of one interesting scene.

And interesting that, in a neighborhood where the houses are so close together, there is an off-street parking spot and a courtyard that is two lots wide. Unfortunately that usually means a house was lost, but from the brick parking pad to the wrought iron fence and gate through the flagstone walks with tall airy locust trees and lush groundcovers they certainly made the most of a small and very shaded area. With lanterns and candles it was lovely at night.

“Intermezzo” is opera-speak for “intermission”, and since this had to do with classical music I thought I’d use the term, and the word feels mysterious, just like the light and shadow in the photo. And just because the photo is a little blurry and scene reminded me of something I’d seen in an impressionist painting, I played around with a few filters in PhotoShop.

courtyard at night

Intermezzo, painterly


The Duchess at Night

ship on the water

The Duchess

This is the Duchess, one of the boats of the Gateway Clipper Fleet in Pittsburgh. As I was leaving an event the other night, there she was, reflected in water behind the dock, near the shore where the surface ripples are gentle and fairly large. Those yellow party lights give it a carnival atmosphere and gently light objects around the boat.

There was a very bright spotlight on the top deck, though, and it not only threw off my light metering, but it was so bright that it was distorted and hazy and reflected too brightly on the surface of the water. No matter how I tried to tame it down, it would have no taming, being painfully bright even when I looked at it in my view screen on the back of the camera.

So I edged over until it was behind the docking station and pressed my camera against the uprights of the little walkway that carried us over the channel behind the dock, and there was this photo.

Night photography is a favorite of mine. The contrast of bright and colored lights against the darkness is so visually appealing, and the patterns of light and dark change a familiar landscape into an entirely new world.

Just add water and you have another element to add to the illusion, reflections distorted and broken apart by even the slightest movement in the water.

 


The Fog Last Night

fog at night

The Fog Last Night

A heavy storm passed through in the late afternoon yesterday, just late enough that the sun didn’t manage to come back out before sunset to burn off the mist. At sunset the Independence Day fireworks began and the powder smoke from all the bangs and whistlers hung in the mist. The air was filled all night long and changed the view out my window as the streetlights and porch lights filled the fog with color and light.