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Saturday was my birthday and I drove up to Mystic, Connecticut with my family for an overnight excursion.  The travel was horrific, especially on the way up, but the rest of the weekend was a brilliant success. We had a great afternoon at the Mystic Seaport Museum of America and the Sea, and then possibly the best restaurant meal I have ever had at The Oyster Club, also in Mystic.

This shot was taken on my iPhone in the Mystic Diner where we stopped for lunch after we finally got off I-95 on the way up. It’s a very good diner with good shakes and ice cream in addition to the main food menu. And iit is well designed and decorated, which is important in a diner.

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  • Len SaltielJuly 28, 2014 - 12:59 pm

    I really like these types of shots Mark. Well seen. I’ll have to try that restuarant next time I am down there.ReplyCancel

  • LensScaperJuly 28, 2014 - 4:28 pm

    That’s a cool find, Mark. And a belated ‘Happy Birthday’ to you. Excellent quality for an iPhone shot too.ReplyCancel

  • MarkJuly 29, 2014 - 8:32 am

    Thanks gentlemen: Even though one of you is really named Andy it’s nice to see comments together from both of “the two Lens” who visit my site regularly.ReplyCancel

Titan Machine Corp


Different gear can help you see things in a different way. I have photowalked this neighborhood at least a half-dozen times,and walked down this block, and never thought to photograph this particular spot until I did so with a 645 Medium Format camera (the Fujifilm GA645zi) and black and white film.

It’s all about the gear. Vision is nothing!

Well, no, but gear can alter your vision.It did for me here.

Anyway, Titan seems to be a pretty cool local business — one of those companies you have no idea exists unless you need its services or go walking around in the odd neighborhoods where they reside. It was founded in  1973 by a man named Carlos Escobar, a 2-time Purple Heart recipient. There’s a cool photo of him on their about section back in the day, and now in his 70s, Carlos is still part of the company. Pretty cool. They manufacture and repair hoistway and elevator equipment. Also pretty cool.

I’ve just used the word “cool” three times in short order but — although I actually  have no direct experience with the company — I just get a very good vibe from their website.

Finally, trying a new idea, here is a Google Street View look at the location to give you an idea of what I saw before I took the picture. Perhaps it gives you a bit of insight into the creative porcess to see an entire street in context and compare it to the end result of the photograph.

View Larger Map


“If you are what you should be you will set the whole world on fire.”

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It is generally considered a poor idea to have a dominant out-of-focus foreground element in an image.  Our eyes naturally start with the closest elements in view. When we look at an image like this and see at that first blurry tulip just to the right off-center, it’s a bit disorienting.

But I liked the way those 2 in-focus tulips relate to one another from this exact angle. And this is not my garden where I would have felt entitled to bend that front tulip out of the way and risk damaging it. So here we are.

I’m not bad at composition, I’m just so damn ethical.

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  • Jimmy DenhamJuly 24, 2014 - 1:21 pm

    Personally, I like when we break rules like this – makes the image a bit more artistic and personal. Lovely colors too!ReplyCancel

  • Len SaltielJuly 24, 2014 - 7:47 pm

    You should know the rules before you break them and you chose correctly on this Mark.ReplyCancel

Miller Theater Doors, Columbia University


A fine if uninspired photograph. I mostly enjoy it for two reasons:

1. I’m amused at how I was able to stand directly, dead center of the doors, and yet avoid having any part of me reflected; and

2. I also like how the door itself is in focus but the reflection of the building across Broadway is blurred.

Minolta SRT-202
Minolta Rokkor 58mm f/1.2
Ilford Delta 400 film pushed.

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Statue of Liberty With Passing Boat Light Trails


It was very early in the morning; pre-dawn in fact. I took this shot of Lady Liberty and it needed to be pretty long — 50 seconds — just  to capture enough light. I was not trying for any sort of long-exposure effects and did not expect any. The Statue of Liberty is a statue after all. She does not move except in Ghostbusters 2.  Plus it was so dark that both the water and sky were essentially invisible, rendering the most common form of long exposure effects irrelevant.

So it was a surprise when I looked at the result and saw the light streaks. It was so dark I could not see the boat at all and did not even notice its lights in real time. It just turned out to be a very happy accident.

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