Photography and Personal Reflection

Photography and Personal Reflection

I love taking pictures.  I always have.  Landscapes, cityscapes, street photography, whatever.  I’ve just always had this desire to capture moments so that you can reflect on them for future reference or just to recall happy memories.  Maybe it’s why people sometimes have told me that I spend too much time living in the past, but sometimes the past is better than the present.  Sometimes it’s just nice to be able to have a picture bring all these memories back to life, like they just happened, even if it’s been 5, 10, or however many years.
1/27/18, 35mm, a7Rii, black and white, eye contact, Lower East Side, Manhattan, New York City, NYC, reflection, sitting, Sony, Starbucks, street photography, through the window

I haven’t really posted much on this blog for a few months which is really crappy of me.  Part of it is that life and work has been so busy and also part of it (a big part) has been that I had lost my photography mojo for a little while.  It seems to come and go, which is so strange to me.  I’ve always loved taking pictures, even when I was little.  It’s one of the things that brings me the most joy in life.  Why would I keep just neglecting not just my blog, but my camera as well?  I suppose part of it has to do with overthinking things, (something else I’ve been told that I often do).  I keep focusing on things that I want to do, such as travel.  I want to see the world.  I want to explore.  The pyramids in Egypt, the Shaharah Bridge in Yemen (although with the way things are over there, I might never get to see that one, but definitely click the link because that bridge looks amazing.  It’s the second picture.)  Taormina, Palermo, Iceland to see the Northern Lights.  I could go on and on.  Not being a millionaire, I probably won’t see even half the places on my travel wishlist.  That, combined with my just general aversion to big cities (despite the fact that I currently live in one, and despite the fact that I absolutely love Milan) just led to me having a bit of a pity party and it got in the way of something I actually love, which is photography.  Thankfully I’m over that now and am focused on solutions rather than problems.

1/27/18, 35mm, a7Rii, black and white, Chinatown, gate, leaning, Lower East Side, Manhattan, New York City, NYC, playground, sitting, Sony, street photography


I was far away when I spotted this shot and there was a rare break in sidewalk traffic so I had only a split second to decide whether or not to take the picture.  I kind of like the smudgy, grainy look.  I like how the girl is off in her own world.  It’s how I was as a teenager (and even more so now as an adult.)  They say your photography reflects how you see the world and for me, that is definitely true in this picture.  I wonder if she’s by herself of if those are her friends in the left corner of the frame.



1/27/18, 35mm, a7Rii, asleep on the train, Color, Manhattan, New York City, NYC, Sony, street photography, subway, trainAnother reason street photography became kind of frustrating is for a reason that all street photographers have to deal with often.  People getting in the way of your shots.  In a big city it’s unavoidable but that doesn’t make it any less frustrating when you have a great shot lined up, everything is clear, nobody in the way, and then right as you click the shutter, some assclown moves into the frame and fucks up the whole scene.  Of course it isn’t their fault, but damn I was pissed when this happened for this picture.  Generally I don’t take pictures of people when they’re sleeping.  I just feel it’s rude and kind of creepy.  Some might say the same thing about street photography in general but that is a discussion for another day.  In this case, I wanted to take his picture because one of the categories for the photography group I’m part of was “objects obscuring a face” so I figured since most of his face was covered that it wasn’t really that bad.  I didn’t mind the man who was standing was in the picture.  I thought it made it better, since it gave it that “spotted across a crowd” feeling.  What ticked me off was when he changed positions so that he was practically blocking the entire scene.

1/27/18, 35mm, a7Rii, bangs, Color, Converse, hipsters, leather jacket, Manhattan, mullet, mustache, New York City, NYC, pinstripe pants, sideburns, Sony, street photography, sunglasses, trench coat

Determined to force myself to look at things in a new way, I went to different parts of Manhattan to see if I could spot anything that might be interesting.  I think these two definitely fit the bill.  

1/27/18, 35mm, a7Rii, Brooklyn, Bunsmith, Color, Cuzin's Duzin, DeKalb Market Hall, korean fried chicken, Manhattan, New York City, NYC, signs, Sony, street photographyThis isn’t really photography related but Hennessy donuts?  I am so there.  These are at the Dekalb Market Hall.  I also am going to get the coquito donuts.  I immediately thought of my mom when I saw those.  She makes coquito every year for Christmas and New Year’s, but she didn’t this year.  We have to get our coquito fix in any way we can.  I’m curious how the Henny and coquito donuts will taste.  From the reviews that I’ve read, they’re pretty good.  I’ll just have to control myself and not go to Bunsmith for their Korean fried chicken bao.  My love of food is why I probably am not able to travel as much as I’d like.  😆 

1/27/18, 35mm, a7Rii, bakery, cafe, Color, eating, faux fur, Manhattan, New York City, NYC, sitting, Sony, street photography, through a window, vegan

This was for another category (through a window).  I liked it but I wanted to see if I could do better.  I didn’t want to edit out the reflection of the bank for two reasons.  One, because I hate removing objects when I’m doing street photography.  The whole point is to capture things as they are.  Color correction and sharpening (even minor cropping depending on who you ask) is one thing.  Removing things is a different matter altogether.  (Did anyone besides me think of that scene in Airplane?  “It’s an entirely different type of flying, altogether!”)  The second reason is because the reflection made it obvious that it was through the window.  (Not like the words written on the window wouldn’t have done the same thing, but you know what I mean.  😆 )

1/27/18, 35mm, a7Rii, apron, bread maker, Color, fresh baked bread, Manhattan, New York City, NYC, oven, Soho, Sony, street photography, though a window

I decided on this picture.  I really like this shot.  This was taken at night, as was the previous picture.  I like how it’s just this man, alone in the shop, preparing bread (or perhaps cleaning up) in preparation for the next day.  The idea of working alone appeals to me enormously.  I’m sure that his day isn’t spent completely alone, but he just seemed so chill, just being by himself, finishing up his work.



  1. February 13, 2018 / 12:55 PM

    Nice to read a post on your blog and see some pictures… I’ve been busy at work and lazy for mine, and I didn’t write a word for two months now 🙁
    I love the last two pictures, the frame is perfect, the light and the mood too.
    I agree with you about not removing things with photoshop… street photography is not perfect, and this is just life. Cropping the picture is enough (with some minor editing of course).

    • Tina
      February 14, 2018 / 10:44 PM

      Grant was having a bit of a break from his photography, too. We were saying that sometimes you just need to take a step back to recover some of your “photography mojo”. For me, the cold weather just made me not want to go outside at all, let alone be outside for hours at a time, hoping something interesting happens. The weather warming up is definitely renewing my desire to get out there again. It’s still cold but it isn’t that bitter cold like it had been recently.

      Going out a few times at night has really made me like night photography. Someone pointing a camera at you stands out, no matter how small the camera. The cover of night gives you this great anonymity, where people don’t really notice you, even if the street isn’t all that crowded.

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