Back to the Streets - Little Italy / Downtown

Needed an afternoon pick me up yesterday so took a walk to get a dirty chai. I picked a spot my wife recommended about a mile from the studio so I could log some time on the streets. Bold, graphic elements are what presented. Take some time this Labor Day weekend to explore what’s around you. Immerse yourself, be present. But most of all enjoy the 3 day holiday!

Back to the Streets - Downtown San Diego

Like many large American cities over the last couple of decades San Diego’s downtown has seen a resurgence and revitalization. Most areas of downtown are now safe and “happening”. This was not always the case. Prior to the Padres building and relocating to PetCo Park the area was blighted and dangerous. That, along with many other revitalization projects has transformed downtown SD into a destination for tourists and locals alike. People actually live downtown now. There are numerous hi rise condos - a new concept for San Diego where sprawl has always been the name of the game . Downtown San Diego’s Gaslamp Quarter is considered the Heart of San Diego. It’s teaming with restaurants, bars, clubs - hard not to be entertained. It’s a happening destination. The Gaslamp is often compared to New Orleans’ French Quarter. I’ve lived in both cities. The Gaslamp is no French Quarter. It doesn’t embrace it’s history the way they do in Louisiana. For that matter, it doesn’t have the history that the French Quarter does. But what little historical significance it has is whitewashed, as you often find in historic areas of California. There’s still enough happening downtown and in the Gaslamp to make it interesting and weird. Great place to explore with a camera, especially as the sun is going down.

Back to the Streets - Transpo

More walking. More street photography. Stumbled on a bit of a transportation theme today.

Back to the Streets - City in Motion

How do you get around in the gig economy? E-bike? Scooter? Trolley? Or the quintessential Southern California ride, a Skateboard? Me? I’ve been walking. Slowing things down. Taking some time to observe what’s around me. What I’m seeing is a lot of people on the move. Moving fast. Lots of motion in all directions.

Back to the Streets - OB at Night

Ocean Beach, a small beach community in San Diego, CA is one of those unique beach communities in Southern California. Sadly, like so many other funky hideaways, it’s slowly being gentrified, with OBceans kicking and screaming the whole way. But when the sun goes down there’s still a a whole lotta flavor.

Back to the Streets - Harbor Drive

I’ve been walking a lot lately. I’m walking places I’d normally drive. I know, nobody walks anywhere in Southern California. I get the weird looks and double takes when people ask me how I got there and I say I walked. But it’s summer in Southern California The weather’s great and I’ve got a creative itch. I carry a camera. I’m looking to get back in touch with my roots. Every couple of years I need to scratch this itch. Back in school I carried a camera with me everywhere. I fancied myself quite the street photographer. I was inspired by the greats; Cartier-Brasson, William Klien, Walker Evans, and all the rest. So when I want a jolt of inspiration, I get back to my roots, I get back to the streets.

A few of the best images I saw in 2016

As I think back at 2016 there are a few images that jump to mind.  This is by no means an extensive year in review, simply a handful of images I personally found impactful and meaningful.  So in no particular order: 

This image of Usain Bolt makes me smile every time I see it.  There's a great backstory on  how photographer Cameron Spencer captured it in Rio at the 2016 Summer Olympics.   This photo is a perfect example of the power the still image.  As video shares became more and more prevalent in 2016, this image resonates because it is a frozen moment in time.  The video of Bolt smiling as he smokes his fellow competitors is compelling, but it's Spencer's still image that creates the enduring visual.   

This image of Usain Bolt makes me smile every time I see it.  There's a great backstory on how photographer Cameron Spencer captured it in Rio at the 2016 Summer Olympics.  This photo is a perfect example of the power the still image.  As video shares became more and more prevalent in 2016, this image resonates because it is a frozen moment in time.  The video of Bolt smiling as he smokes his fellow competitors is compelling, but it's Spencer's still image that creates the enduring visual.   

"Powerful" is how photographer Jonothan Bachman described protester Ieshia Evans. I find this image powerful on so many different levels.  The more I look at the image the more I find, the more I examine, the more I question, which is exactly what the most powerful photography does.   Evans is detained by law enforcement as she protests the shooting death of Alton Sterling near the headquarters of the Baton Rouge Police Department in Baton Rouge, La., on July 9, 2016.

"Powerful" is how photographer Jonothan Bachman described protester Ieshia Evans. I find this image powerful on so many different levels.  The more I look at the image the more I find, the more I examine, the more I question, which is exactly what the most powerful photography does.

Evans is detained by law enforcement as she protests the shooting death of Alton Sterling near the headquarters of the Baton Rouge Police Department in Baton Rouge, La., on July 9, 2016.

Mark Peterson's work  on the 2016 campaign trail is amazing. There are many great images in Peterson's  Political Theater  project, but it is the overall body of work that had a lasting impact as it unfolded throughout 2016.

Mark Peterson's work on the 2016 campaign trail is amazing. There are many great images in Peterson's Political Theater project, but it is the overall body of work that had a lasting impact as it unfolded throughout 2016.

Nadav Kander  is one of the greatest working photographers today.  He is a master of the craft. His portraits are a constant inspiration for me.  And  his portrait of president elect Donald Trump for Time Magazine's Person of the Year  is a tour de force.  It's subtle but impactful.   It's subversive message is well chronicled .  I found  his own words describing the controversy and image insightful and humble.

Nadav Kander is one of the greatest working photographers today.  He is a master of the craft. His portraits are a constant inspiration for me.  And his portrait of president elect Donald Trump for Time Magazine's Person of the Year is a tour de force.  It's subtle but impactful.  It's subversive message is well chronicled.  I found his own words describing the controversy and image insightful and humble.