Remembering The Past

For todays post I would like you to think back to when you were a kid and try to remember something that stood out to you. Today, I was close by one of the towns that I grew up in and decided to take a ride down main street.  As I rode down the street I remembered asking  my dad to  ride my bicycle “uptown” to go to the 5 and 10 store for some candy.  At the risk of dating myself I can remember when you could get a bunch of candy for a quarter and imagine how much I was able to get with a dollar and our local 5 and 10 had penny candy.  I now know that this was one of the few places left that was still selling penny candy.  I can remember leaving my bike on the sidewalk, running into the store with my friends and picking our candy.  (there once was a time when you could leave you bike on the sidewalk and it would still be there when you came out) Then my friends and I would ride back home with our brown bags filled with candy.

As I rode through the town today I was amazed at how things have changed and, at the same time, how things have stayed the same.  The 5 and 10 store, although long ago closed, is still standing.  Another place that I remember was the local barber shop.  In this case we are talking about Mr. Ugliks. I can remember sitting there in the yellow chairs that lined the walls listening to all the older men talking about, well just about everything. I think Mr. Uglik spent more time talking than cutting, it was an experience that many will never have.  To this day I can remember the sound that the razor made when he sharpened it on the leather strap hanging from the chair and the feeling of the shaving cream on my neck.  And by-the-way the price for a hair cut was $6 and that included the shave.  But the entertainment was free and priceless.  I have to mention, just in case someone from the area reads this, the one man that was always there, “The Captain”.  If you’ve ever spent any time in Masontown, Pa,  I’m positive you ran into “The Captain” at some point.

So I leave you with this, remember the old times, tell the young people about them, for they are gone and if we don’t share our memories how will they live on?

Some things from the past are worth remembering….

5 and 10 Ugliks Barber Shop

Gettysburg, one of my favorite places…

Wow I was just noticing that I haven’t posted since July.  Wow how the time flies.  Well I guess a small update is in order, since the last posting I have received a promotion at work which has taken all of my fun time away.  Isn’t it funny how that happens?  We work so that we can do the things that we want to do but then work gets in the way of all the things that we want to do.  What a vicious cycle….

Well I did manage to get out one day and took a ride to one of my favorite places to visit,  Gettysburg, Pa.  I have spent many days wandering around the battlefield and always manage to see something new or different.  This trip was no exception.  I managed to come across a statue of a solider hiding behind a rock near the bottom of Little Round Top.  Now the exciting thing about this is that I have been driving past this spot for years now and I have never seen this statue before.  It goes to show you that sometimes we miss the obvious when looking for the extraordinary.  And sometimes the obvious turns out to be the extraordinary.

Well I hope you enjoy the photos and I’ll try to post a little more frequently.

This is the view that a Union Soldier would have seen from atop Little Round Top during the battle of Gettysburg in July 1863.

One of my favorite statues in Gettysburg is this one of General Warren which is found on Little Round Top

This is the hidden treasure I was referring to in the beginning of this post.  I like the shadows in the black and white version of this photograph.

A Walk Through the Garden….

Recently I had a little free time and decided to stop by the outdoor gardens at Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Gardens. The inside always proves to have great flowers, patterns, and details to photograph.  In my opinion the outside has some very interesting things to photograph as well.  Included are just a few shots from the walk but I think I was able to come up with a few interesting photos.

If you in the area I would recommend stopping by and taking a walk around the outside of the building.  The best part is that there is no charge to visit the outside gardens.

Churches of Pittsburgh…

Just wanted to do a quick post of a couple of churches in Pittsburgh, Pa.  I photographed these in the early spring and just got around to processing them.  On Sunday I will be making a trip to Allegheny Cemetery in Pittsburgh and hopefully I’ll have a chance to photograph a few more of the churches.

Hope you enjoy.

When You Hear the Word “Independence”…

Well, with yesterday being July 4th and the celebration of our countries independence day I thought I would reflect a little on what independence really means.  The dictionary defines independence as being “the fact or state of being independent”.  But I like the definition found in Wikipedia:

Independence is a condition of a nation,country, or state in which its residents and population, or some portion thereof, exercise self-government, and usuallysovereignty, over its territory.

In 1776 this country declared its independence.  And over the years we have lost many of our soldiers, friends, and loved ones keeping that independence and freedom.  We live in a great country and each of us owe a debt to those who have given us the right to live here in freedom.  It’s great that we have days like July 4th, Veterans Day, and Memorial Day to remember those who sacrificed so much for our way of life.  But should we forget about them the other 362 days of the year.  Every day we wake up we should be thankful for what we have, no matter how little or great it is.  And when you see a soldier or veteran take the time to say “Thank You” for what they have given so that you can live in this great country.

If you are reading this and you are a soldier or veteran I want to personally thank you for the freedom that you have given to me.

THANK YOU!!!

I shot the following photos on our independence day.

Familiar but Different….

From time to time we revisit a familiar place and yet somehow it seem different than the way you remembered.  Recently I had a few hours to spare, which by the way never occurs, and I took a ride Ohiopyle State Park.  I have visited and photographed the water fall know as Cucumber Falls many times before and quite often I just go for a walk and don’t take any photos at all.

As photographers we are often faced with this dilemma of seeing the same subject over and over agin.  Often this causes me to not want to take a photo of this particular subject.  The question arises, “How do you make the Familiar Different?”, well my answer to the question is a very simple one.  Simply choose a  lens that you wouldn’t typically use and only photograph your subject with that single lens.  I will offer a suggestion here though, I would pick a lens that really doesn’t fit the subject.  In my case, at the ever so familiar Cucumber Falls, I chose to use a fisheye lens.

I guess that I’m trying to make myself see a familiar subject in a slightly different way.

Let me know what you think of the photographs.