Saturday, September 30, 2006

Model Trains


These were taken at what used to be the Vienna train station on the WO&D line. The station was shut down in the mid 60s and has since been purchased by model train enthusiasts. These days it's model train heaven. Every so often they have an open house and let people come in and see their stuff.



Wednesday, September 27, 2006

Wine country...

Some of the more popular wineries in Napa and Sonoma Counties are just situated to inspire. With luck, the wine isn't too bad either :) I spotted these folks on a peaceful terrace overlooking the vineyards below.

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Working at the carwash...

I prefer going to carwashes that are at least PARTIALLY manual, rather than the lifeless, fully-automated locations. These folks are just fun to watch as the descend on a fresh car with their brushes and their sprays and their tire brushes. And sure enough, waiting on the other end...a friendly pair of hands to dry your car before it faces the world.

How Many People On A Team?


I thought a soccer team consisted of only 11 guys. When I was at the park, I snapped this picture of a game being played. I don't know if it was a real game or a scheduled pickup game or something. I couldn't get everyone on the field into the picture since there were so many guys out there and they were spread all over the field. This was about two-thirds of the guys out there (I think there were close to 30 guys out on the field between the two teams).

Saturday, September 23, 2006

More beach dwellers...

Although people photos at the beach are really not that tough to find, the harsh lighting can be a challenge. But these photos from Ocean Beach drew out two of the most popular activities at this beach: surfing and watching surfers.


Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Cool Bike


I can honestly say I don't think I've seen a bike quite like this one before. Looks like it would be a lot of fun to ride. I can only hope I'm even half as active as this guy once I get a bit older.

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Afternoon at the beach...

Jeff and I took a stroll along Ocean Bean this weekend, and this woman amused us. On a beach crowded with surfers and sand castle builders, she managed to find a quiet spot for her book. The deep shadows in this photo don't give you much of a view of the person, but the colors are so darn appealing.

Sunday, September 17, 2006

Helping Hands


Three Habitat for Humanity builds started this Saturday in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. One of these was the Women Build which is designed to encourage women to make a difference in the community. There are skilled and unskilled volunteers who participated, but as can be seen in the photograph - there is great determination in each participant.

Timeless treat...

Some things never change. Ice cream in late summer is still almost universally appealing. True to the American way, this shop sells antique furniture, coffee, cookies, cake, truffles, and of course about a dozen flavors of ice cream. The little girl struggled over the choices with her face pressed against the cool glass for sometime. I am not sure if it was indecision or just enjoying the temperature change. She settled on chocolate! I remember when those ice cream freezers seemed so enormous.

If you are wondering about the handwritten note in the bottom right it says "Thank you for not playing the pianio." I love this place.

Saturday, September 16, 2006

The art of conversation...

I captured this image in Napa Valley along the Silverado Trail. Nothing like a glass of sparkling wine to liven up a conversation.

Friday, September 15, 2006

The real OC...


During our Labor Day trip to LA, we took a day trip to Laguna Beach. We caught these folks as the sun was low on the horizon. Beautiful lighting is everything :)

Thursday, September 14, 2006

Recursion


I have this crazy image in my head that she's taking a picture of someone who's taking a picture of me.

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Public fountain...

The fountain in Justin Herman Plaza is a sunny, midday hangout for tourists and locals. If you don't live in San Francisco, you might recall the fountain in these photos as the backdrop for an impromptu concert in U2's Rattle and Hum movie.


Monday, September 11, 2006

Explaining...

This was a colorful scene on Haight Street. The subject is taking the time to try and reach out to a group of people camped out on the street. But really...I just liked the hat :)

Sunday, September 10, 2006

Taking a break...

This guy was taking a breather along Haight Street in SF. Just contemplating the world, I suppose. He's definitely in a good spot for some only-in-SF people watching.

Golden Years

It was a beautiful Saturday morning. The coffee shop was full of folks getting java and pastries. I spotted these two outside pointing out trees and birds to each other, reading the paper, and relaxing. I took the picture because the couple had a great aura of satisfaction about them. I love people who know how to take time and relax and enjoy themselves. I am getting better at it, but I still have a lot to learn.

Daily Grind




This guy obviously has a huge pair of brass kahones on him for skateboarding in the middle of a street. In his defense, it was a pretty nice hill and we don't exactly have parks dedicated to this stuff out here on the east coast (and to be honest, I guess there wasn't that much traffic).

Saturday, September 09, 2006

Running Man


At first I decided I wasn't going to put this shot up, because it's blurry. Then I thought, maybe this represents us and our challenges. It's our constant struggle to push onward. It's a 'blurring' of the line between success and perseverance. Maybe it represents the journey as we continue forward not knowing what's ahead. And then I thought, no, it really is just a blurry picture.

Friday, September 08, 2006

Waterfront property...

I've seen this guy many times on my back-roads route into the office. He lives under the concrete platform that he is standing on in this photo. But only when the tide is out, because the platform is part of an old pier. Truly a sympathetic image.

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Fun times at the airport...

Its a natural reaction to the frantic, impersonal crowds at the airport that we tune out the people we pass by. In the hustle and bustle to get from car to plane, we often overlook the people behind the scenes and the people standing next to us. Which is a shame.

Personally, I like to try and envision the story behind the nameless faces: the reason for the mismatched shoes, the random itinerary that has brought us together for 30 minutes, the drudgery of dealing with a non-stop conveyor belt of bags.

Well...that's how I pass the time.



Tuesday, September 05, 2006

The business of pleasure...

Even on the weekends, I tend to wake up at a normal work-day hour. So this weekend, I spent some quiet mornings by the roof-top pool in West Hollywood. At that hour, you get a chance to see all the behind-the-scenes work that goes into making everything tick.

Turning it on...

These guys from the A&F store in Los Angeles were funny. One moment, they were chatting away, oblivious to the world. Then, I walked up to them and asked if I could take their picture, and BOOM, the smiles went on and they struck their poses.

Monday, September 04, 2006

kids being kids

I would never compete with our resident child photographer, but it was hard to pass up this opportunity. The dancing fountain outside the Shaw Center for the Arts is always an attraction for children, particularly in the deep, hot south.

All Aboard!


These days it doesn't seem like there are a lot jobs that allow smoking on the job (at least not here in the States). This guy evidently has just such a job though. He was the conductor for a small train that travels through one of the local parks. The smell from the pipe was pretty powerful considering it permeated the area well after the train had passed us by. It did make for an interesting image though as the train and the conductor were both puffing along.

Sunday, September 03, 2006

The kids are alright...



These were taken this summer on the Berkeley campus. The student population is much lighter but there is still a bustle of activity. Check out the Coke shirt -(at least it looks like a Coke shirt to me.)

I didn't alter these shots to show my "off the hip" picture taking technique. Everything comes up with a different angle and composition. :)

Saturday, September 02, 2006

Living in La

There is a farmer's market the first Saturday of every month, in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. I mostly enjoy going to eat the fresh cheesecake available from a local dairy but it's also a fun place to people watch. In addition to the available produce, there are arts and crafts and live musicians, like this gentleman and his partner who entertained the crowd with their guitar and harmonica.

Since this is my first post on this blog, I'll go ahead and plug the work we've done after hurricanes Katrina and Rita. Here are one of the hundreds of volunteers that have come to help us build houses in Louisiana after the storms.

Errands at the Box Stores

We headed to the nearest large town today to get a few things we needed around the house at the big box stores...which we don't have in town. Some great folks from the local humane society were trying to find some new homes for dogs. It is amazing how people, who never met each other, talk like old friends around a happy dog.
For me, no trip out is complete until I get a mocha. The chap at this coffee shop was being extremely patient with what I will describe as a very challenging customer. You know...one of those people that are so difficult that everyone in a 20 ft radius feels uncomfortable. You consider saying or doing something, but stop short because it might only make a bad situation worse.

Wow, Thanks

We recently were listed as a Blog of Note for Sept 1, 2006. In fact, this is almost undoubtedly the reason you've arrived at this blog. We really appreciate the fact that someone out there considered us worthy of being recognized. It really does mean a lot. Having said that, I'm also fairly certain most of the contributors here would be too modest to ever think we actually deserve such an honor.

This blog started simply as a challenge between a few of us to try and hone our skill of taking photographs of people. As you'll be able to tell from various entries, everyone has their own style, but the overall product is a team effort. And I suspect if you look through the relatively limited archives you'll notice some of our members are pretty gifted in the art of photography.

This whole popularity thing really is new to us. Just for grins, we included the summary of the hits to our page for the past week. As you can see, prior to Friday, getting more than 10 unique hits was considered impressive. So thanks again to Blogger for the honor, and thanks to all the rest of you that stopped by to take a look. We hope it was worth the trip.

Friday, September 01, 2006

SF stories...

Jeff and I rarely get out to the busy (aka, touristy) parts of San Francisco unless we have visitors. But it is certainly refreshing to take in Fisherman's Wharf and Haight Street a couple of times a year just to see a different cross section of people. So thank you to Cheryl for her recent visit and for giving us a reason to mingle with our wacky summer invaders.

For example, this clown was one of those "scary" clowns around the Wharf...the ones whose costume and makeup are well worn. I particularly like his zany clown comb.

Then you have the myriad of street performers. These guys are MOST interesting on their way to and from "work".

Our tourists themselves put on quite a display, like this guy who got fooled by our morning fog and left the hotel without a hat.

But my favorite shot of this day was of this guy singing his heart out on Haight Street. He was singing a capella with hands firmly in his overcoat pockets. He reminds me of Jay from Jay and Silent Bob fame.

Landing in San Diego...

I grabbed this shot as we were on approach to San Diego. The low light and high contrast forced this odd grainy image, but I like it better this way :)