Friday, September 30, 2011

The Reds and the Golds

The Reds & the Golds

Today's photo is a little break from the Folsom Street Fair -- it's from my trip to New Orleans a month ago.

I went back and forth on this photo, and now, a month later, I'm sure I like it. I'm not alone in going back and forth on it either -- I pointed a good friend of mine to it, and he said, "The more I look at it, the more I like that man on the right, and HATE that woman on the left on the phone".

If I can't produce a thing of beauty, maybe at least I can show up with something that will enrage? ;)

At any rate, along with the contrast in color and the rhythm of the pedestrians here, it reminded me of one of my favorite facts about ancient Byzantium -- the city was split into political factions who manifested their disagreements by chariot races and eventually rioting.

Every time I see people wearing competing colors, I think of that.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Attack of the Y Chromosome

Attack of the Y Chromosome

Taking a photo of just men at the Folsom Street Fair is an interesting constraint, and I think it yielded some fun results here.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Rapture in Jade

Rapture in Jade

Shot this over at the Gold's Gym area of the Folsom Street Fair, where they had people on pedestals twirling these colorful flags.

Monday, September 26, 2011


Yesterday was the Folsom Street Fair in San Francisco, and I was up there about thirty minutes before the fair started.

I believe I've said this before, but it's worth saying again:

By far the most disturbing aspect of this fair is not any of the sexual or generally bdsm-themed activity that goes on. It's that the same vendors who sell garlic fries and grilled corn at the Mountain View Art and Wine festival also show up here, for this event. It makes me wonder: What is the life of one of these vendors like? One day, bourgie art & wine festival. The next, sketchy Central Valley carnival. Then *bam*, naked people are tying each other up in the street and getting whipped, and you're still there, peddling the same old fries. Anyway, just a fun thought -- maybe there's a photo essay in the lives of those folks. ;)

Anyway, back to the FSF. The light was awesome. I stayed for about four hours, and felt bad to leave even then, since the light was still going great.

The subject here is a man doing a demonstration of various types of masochism at once -- being blindfolded, whipped, and then also have more sensitive parts roped up. For my part, the hard part wasn't imagining dealing with the pain -- it was imagining how much time this guy has to spend at the gym. Regardless, he made for a wonderful subject, and the alternate title could almost be, 'Grace Under Pressure'. ;)

Thursday, September 22, 2011

The Lonely Road

The Lonely Road
While I was walking around SF on Saturday, I found a road I'd never seen, called "Maiden Lane". I was taken by the fact that it's this little pedestrian only lane in a city that despite all the hype seems to love letting people drive everywhere, and at increasingly odd angles. The light there is particularly interesting this time of year, with the sun flaring around the edge of buildings.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Smoke and Mirrors

Smoke and Mirrors
I pass this guy on Geary Street all the time. Lots of photos of him, none I was super happy with -- pretty easy to take pictures of a hard bitten guy who loves to smoke. This one though, it seemed to work for me -- nice time of day, nice rim lighting, nice slouch against the wall, nice reflections. * 

Speaking of dozens of photos, this is now my 200th post. I hope if you're reading this you've found an image here that really sings for you -- something that makes you go back and look at it again, or when you see it again months (or years) later, you remember the feeling it gave you the first time you saw it. A good photo is always like taking a trip to this crazy new world -- one you've never seen before, but maybe was already there right in front of you.

So, hopefully there have been an image like that for you here. If not, keep watching -- the photos are likely to continue until they pry the camera from my cold, dead hands.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Breakfast, Camellia Grill

Breakfast, Camellia Grill
The Camellia Grill is an institution in New Orleans -- a place that manages to stay fairly awesome despite being a destination for tourists and even a southern-flavored hipster or two. I shot this after about three hours sleep on a red-eye out to New Orleans, so for my part I was happy just to not be face down in my omelet. Despite not being damaged in Katrina, the place ended up closing for about two years, and is owned by someone new. Despite being all new wait staff and owners, the food and service still seemed pretty top notch -- and any place you can get pecan pie as a breakfast dessert is OK by me.

Monday, September 12, 2011

Laissez Les Bons Temps Roulez

Laissez les bons temps roulez
You know the parade is going well when the people marching bring bottles of tequila to pour down the throats of the crowd.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Ann Street Scene

Ann Street Scene
The crowd on a corner of St. Ann street during the Decadence parade was a nice mix of French Quarter denizens and people there from out of town for the parade.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011


This is another shot from the French Quarter during the Decadence festival. The intersection of the jazz aesthetic and gay men being wonderfully shameless about their sexuality made for some fun pictures. :)

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Eye Opener

Eye Opener On a plane back from New Orleans, I was going through my shots from SF a few weeks back, and I found another one from 4th & King that I really liked.

Monday, September 5, 2011

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Decadent Jazz

Decadent Jazz
Still in New Orleans, and it's still raining, but the tropical storm is at least edging its way north and out of drop-a-foot-rain-six-hours territory. This afternoon, I took the bus (the street cars are out because of branches on the tracks) over to the French Quarter, where they're busy having Southern Decadence, billed as a kind of gay Mardi Gras. True to New Orleans form, Decadence has a parade -- and in fact they managed to still have their parade right after Katrina. Unlike the Pride events in larger cities like SF, or even the big Mardi Gras parades in New Orleans, Decadence definitely seemed to be the sort of parade where you could get right out in the street with the marchers. Got this shot right near the end of the parade, as the jazz band marched right around the corner of Bourbon and St. Ann.

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Rainy Gaze

Rainy Gaze My girlfriend Betsy is living in New Orleans while she gets her masters degree, and I decided to spend the long weekend here with her. Naturally, just as I arrived, the mayor was on television, announcing a state of emergency while the city got ready for Tropical Storm Lee, which is estimated to drop 10-20" of rain our heads before Tuesday.

 Undeterred, we went out for dinner at Antoine's in the French Quarter last night, and I happen to snag this shot in our cab on the way home.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

They Might Be Giants

We Might Be Giants
More fun from the Caltrain station this weekend. I went back and forth on this, but I think the contrast makes it a good choice for a b&w conversion. If you'd like to see it in color, check it out here.