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The Village of Hamburg Waking Up

June 26, 2018  •  Leave a Comment

Previously from the village of Hamburg, NY: Theaters in the Rain - Hamburg PalaceBrick & Mortar Gallery: Matted, Framed, and Ready to HangOne More White while AppropriateMore Winter in Hamburg, NYTheaters in the Rain Revisited, and BeyondPalace in WinterA Shed

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Catching a sunrise is always wonderful and somehow more rewarding than a sunset. I usually run away from civilization to enjoy the special moment on my own, away from people and the noises of every day life. This morning, however, I got up early to see the village of Hamburg, NY wake up. It was a weekend and I arrived very early around 5:30 a.m. The sun was nowhere to be seen, yet, there were definitely signs of life already - the occasional pedestrian, a car passing by. All still very quiet but waking up. And that was wonderful to observe as the change was obvious with more and more life showing up every minute.

I am really glad I arrived before the sun lit up the streets as that was another great experience. Not only does the sun need to rise rather high to send its rays into the streets it needs to clear various other obstacles too. There are trees to rise above, and buildings of different height lining the street. Finally, as the sun rises a bit more north in summer its rise also repositions it more to the east clearing the way to enter streets running east to west without obstacles. And since my focus this morning was on Main Street which runs in this direction, the morning time was definitely a time of change.

I'd like to show two pairs of side by side photographs from this morning where the first photo was taken before the sun illuminated the street and the buildings and the second right after the sun made its entrance.

Coyote Cafe Mexican Restaurant at Daybreak, Hamburg, NYCoyote Cafe at DaybreakHamburg, NY

Coyote Cafe Mexican Restaurant at Daybreak, Hamburg, NY

Coyote Cafe Mexican Restaurant at Sunrise, Hamburg, NYCoyote Cafe at SunriseHamburg, NY

Coyote Cafe Mexican Restaurant at Sunrise, Hamburg, NY

Hess Brothers Florist at Daybreak, Hamburg, NYHess Brothers Florist at DaybreakHamburg, NY

Hess Brothers Florist at Daybreak, Hamburg, NY

Hess Brothers Florist at Sunrise, Hamburg, NYHess Brothers Florist at SunriseHamburg, NY

Hess Brothers Florist at Sunrise, Hamburg, NY

Enjoy The Beauty That Surrounds You (#etbtsy)!

Do you enjoy reading my photography blog? Would you like to see more photographs from Buffalo and Western New York? Visit my Buffalo Cityscapes and Buffalo & Western New York Landscapes and enjoy! Please, let me know if you have any questions about any photo products offered, or not offered, I will be happy to help! For a quick reference to all photo galleries and collections as well as all photo products currently offered through my site, please, visit the Products page.

Using my links to do your shopping keeps me sharing more photographs and writing the stories behind them and costs you nothing. You can also use the Amazon search box in bottom left for anything at all. I truly appreciate each purchase, no matter how large, no matter how small. Thank you!

 

Blue Hour Rain at Cyote Cafe, Hamburg, NYBlue Hour Rain at Cyote CafeHamburg, NY Palace Classic, Hamburg, NYHamburg Palace ClassicHamburg, NY The Palace Theatre of Hamburg, NYThe Palace TheatreHamburg, NY Busy Staub Square & Juicy Burger Bar at dusk, traffic at the main circle, Hamburg, NY, Buffalo SouthtownsBusy Staub SquareHamburg, NY Theater for Rainy Days, Palace Theatre, Hamburg, NY, Buffalo SouthtownsTheater for Rainy DaysHamburg, NY


At Peace Bridge after a While

June 15, 2018  •  Leave a Comment

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My return to film photography and darkroom photo printing has an interesting side effect. I want to go back and photograph some of my favorite places again on film so that I can make my own black and white prints. I have always liked revisiting places and even have several posts here in the blog on that topic, however, this puts a whole new spin on the topic. I prefer to take only one camera with me on my photo outings, any more seems to distract me. Too many gadgets and not enough focus on what's around me. However, sometimes I at least throw some extras in the trunk.

So for today's post, here are two fresh color photos from one of my favorite locations, the Bird Island Pier, or Nowak Pier, with the camera pointed at Peace Bridge. As I entered the pier I noticed the "new" dedication plaque to Henry J Nowak. Yes, I have probably not been here for longer than I thought. I doubt anyone will start calling the pier by that name just because of the plaque but who knows. I guess renaming things there is popular as the island itself saw its name go from Squaw Island to Unity Island.

As soon as I started walking down the pier I noticed something I had never seen here before. There was so much water and the water level in the Black Rock Canal was so high that the overflow pipes going under the pier were very busy. Water was rushing through all of them with force making for quite a unique sight and also generating quite a bit of noise! It also immediately captivated my attention and I knew I wanted that to be the differentiating element from my past photos.

Water Rush under Peace Bridge, Buffalo, NYWater Rush under Peace BridgeBuffalo, NY

I found myself an interesting overflow with a branch and a pretty large log and started working on the camera position and angles. I went lower and lower until the camera was about a foot over the flowing water. The log, however, proved to be an unexpected challenge. Despite being large and heavy it wobbled around in the strong water flow. It was bumping against one of my tripod legs interfering with the long exposures I had in mind. That was easily fixed by repositioning the tripod though.

The second challenge was not so easily solvable. As the log moved back and forth couple inches it was getting blurred and that was not good. In long exposures, I like the blurred water flow to be clearly contrasted with sharply rendered objects like rocks or wood in this case. Solution? I pushed the log off a bit with my foot and lodged it underneath the log to prevent the rocking. In the end, I thought it worked alright despite making for an uncomfortable picture taking position.

I took the first photo shortly after sunset as the sky retained some nice colors. Unfortunately, all of the clouds from an earlier rain floated away about two hours too early.I liked this angle not only because it combined the overflow water rush from Black Rock Canal to the Niagara River but it also showed both the river and Lake Erie in the background.

For the next photo, I had to wait another 45 minutes.

Gold & Purple Peace Bridge, Buffalo, NYGold & Purple Peace BridgeBuffalo, NY

Enjoy The Beauty That Surrounds You (#etbtsy)!

Do you enjoy reading my photography blog? Would you like to see more photographs from Buffalo and Western New York? Visit my Buffalo Cityscapes and Buffalo & Western New York Landscapes and enjoy! For more bridges feel free to explore the Bridges of Buffalo photo collection. Please, let me know if you have any questions about any photo products offered, or not offered, I will be happy to help! For a quick reference to all photo galleries and collections as well as all photo products currently offered through my site, please, visit the Products page.

Using my links to do your shopping keeps me sharing more photographs and writing the stories behind them and costs you nothing. You can also use the Amazon search box in bottom left for anything at all. I truly appreciate each purchase, no matter how large, no matter how small. Thank you!

 

Color Splash Reflection under Peace Bridge over Niagara River, Buffalo, New York (NY)Color Splash Reflection under Peace BridgeBuffalo, NY Peace Bridge from Buffalo, NY to Fort Erie, Canada over he NIagara River after Sunset.Peace Bridge at SunsetBuffalo, NY Peace Bridge Dressed in Blue, with Hints of Green, Red, and Yellow. Bird Island Pier, Buffalo, New York (NY).Peace Bridge Dressed in Lavender and BlueBuffalo, NY Illuminated Peace Bridge at Dusk with a reflection of the bridge and lights in the Niagara River below. Connects Buffalo, NY, USA and Fort Erie, Ontario, Canada.Illuminated Peace Bridge at DuskBuffalo, NY


Road Trip: Route 66 Part VIII - Largest Totem Pole

June 07, 2018  •  Leave a Comment

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Oklahoma became the 46th state to join the United States on November 16, 1907. The capital city is Oklahoma City. The highest point is Black Mesa at 4,973 feet.

Ed Galloway's World's Largest Concrete Totem Pole, Route 66, Foyil, OKEd Galloway's World's Largest Concrete Totem PoleRoute 66, Foyil, OK Road Trip 2013 - Day 17 - June 27 - Route 66 - Catoosa, OK (Previous 2013 Road Trip posts: Indiana DunesDe ImmigrantAmana ColoniesDes MoinesMadison County Roads, Bridges of Madison CountyWhite Pole Road, Great Platte River Road Archway MonumentGolden Spike Tower & Union Pacific's Bailey Rail Yard, Loveland PassThe Resting Day at Powderhorn, Black Canyon of the GunnisonCimarronColorado National MonumentFruita Rodeo, Grand MesaArches National ParkGrand Junction, Grand Mesa CreekArches National Park Add-On, Canyonlands National ParkThe Little Big Moments of Road Tripping, Mesa Verde National Park, Santa FeSanta Fe Train Depot, Pecos National Historical ParkRoute 66 Part I, Santa Rosa, NMRoute 66 Part II, Santa Rosa, NMRoute 66 Part III, TucumcariRoute 66 Part IV: Cadillac RanchRoute 66 Part V: Bug Ranch), Route 66 Part VI: Conoco & MagnoliaMoore, OK after the 2013 TornadoRoute 66 Part VII - Catoosa, OKRoad Trip: Route 66 Part VIII - Largest Totem Pole

On the road again moving just over 30 miles north-east since our last stop in Catoosa, Oklahoma and stopping 4 miles east of Route 66 in Foyil, OK to check out Ed Galloway's "playground", including the largest concrete totem pole in the world. I guess it used to be the largest totem pole but now with competing totem poles made of other materials the word concrete had to be added to solidify the claim.

Lizard on the Largest Totem Pole, Route 66, Foyil, OKLizard on the Largest Totem PoleRoute 66, Foyil, OK There are other sculptures on the property, including the turtle the totem pole is built on top of. There's also a Fiddle House where Ed's home made fiddles used to be, and still are on display.

Enjoy The Beauty That Surrounds You! (#etbtsy)

References: Oklahoma on 50States.comRoadside America - nps.gov - Legends of America

Would you like to see more of my travel photographs? Visit the Travel Photography gallery or the On the Road photo collection. Please, let me know if you have any questions about any photo products offered, or not offered. Looking for a present? I also offer ready to hang solutions like canvas gallery wraps, prints on metal, and matted and framed ready to hang photographs.

Do you like my free content but are not ready to buy a photograph for your walls yet? Using my links to do your shopping helps me share more photographs and write the stories behind them. And it costs you nothing. You just need to start your shopping by clicking on an advertised product or use the Amazon search box in bottom left. It does not matter what you eventually buy as long as you start here. I truly appreciate each purchase, no matter how small. Thank you!

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Further Out of This World

June 05, 2018  •  Leave a Comment

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Rock Textures, Valley of Fire State Park in Nevada, not far from Las Vegas.Rock TexturesValley of Fire State Park Previously from Lake Mead and the Valley of Fire: Road Trip through Mars - Road through Fiery Wonders - Out of This World - Further Out of This World

Moving further into the Valley of Fire, one finds more and more unbelievable rock formations with a never-ending variety of textures and colors. Those colors! What struck me the most in this park were not the individual colors as much, even though they were certainly striking, but the juxtaposition of their variety. Red rocks right next to yellow and white as if nature was not sure what color to use in that particular layer. And the blue and white colors of the sky provided a beautiful backdrop for the warm colors on the ground.

The biggest challenge at a place like this? Picking and choosing the best views and curbing one's enthusiasm. I found it very rewarding looking around, selecting a formation, and then spending time with it trying to find the best vantage point and perspective. Another advantage? I got to see all of the other rock formations that I originally did not select from different angles, often finding one that was not obvious at first but literally screamed for attention once identified!

Nature's Colorful Palette, Valley of Fire State Park in Nevada near Las VegasNature's Colorful PaletteValley of Fire State Park

Nature's Colorful Palette, Valley of Fire State Park in Nevada near Las Vegas

Enjoy the beauty that surrounds you (#etbtsy)!

Did you enjoy this post and the included photographs? Would you like to see more of my travel photographs? Visit my Landscapes Faraway or Travel Photography galleries. Please, let me know if you have any questions about any photo products offered, or not offered. Looking for a present? I also offer ready to hang solutions like canvas gallery wraps, prints on metal, and matted and framed ready to hang photographs.

Do you like my free content but are not ready to buy a photograph for your walls yet? Using my links to do your shopping helps me share more photographs and write the stories behind them. And it costs you nothing. You just need to start your shopping by clicking on an advertised product or use the Amazon search box in bottom left. It does not matter what you eventually buy as long as you start here. I truly appreciate each purchase, no matter how small. Thank you!

 

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17th Annual Letchworth Red, White & Blue Balloon Festival, 2018

May 31, 2018  •  Leave a Comment

Support this blog: Do you like my free content but are not ready to buy a photograph yet? Using my links (Amazon) to do your shopping helps me share more photographs and write the stories behind them.

Previously from Letchworth Balloon Rallies: Balloon Festivals, ... Third Time was The Charm13th Annual Letchworth Red, White & Blue Balloon Festival13th Annual Red, White & Blue Balloon Festival, Letchworth State Park 201414th Annual Red, White & Blue Balloon Festival, Letchworth State Park 201515th Annual Letchworth Red, White & Blue Balloon Festival16th Annual Letchworth Red, White & Blue Balloon Festival, 201717th Annual Letchworth Red, White & Blue Balloon Festival, 2018

Alright, another year under our belts and another tough year for the balloonists. While the weather seemed great to the general public it did not meet the safety standards for ballooning. As a result, there was only one successful launch during the 17th annual Red, White, and Blue Hot Air Balloon Festival in Letchworth State Park. Winds and storms in the area forced cancellations of the other 5 scheduled launches.

Knowing the uncertainty very well from the previous years we did not want to miss out and headed for Letchworth right on Friday night, also hoping for smaller crowds. Saturday and Sunday nights are pretty packed and the crowds seem to be growing every year. It was a great evening by the gorge but the launch had to be cancelled due to high winds in higher altitudes.

Next came another annual tradition and that was setting the alarm for 3:50 a.m. to make it to the gorge early enough to enjoy the start of a new day. And we sure made it!

Letchworth Sunrise Wonder. Letchworth State Park, New York (NY), 2018Letchworth Sunrise WonderLetchworth State Park

Letchworth Sunrise Wonder. Letchworth State Park, New York

Even here the times they are a changin', though. I have been visiting this spot for sunrises for many years mostly having it to myself. So for the mornings of the balloon festivals I started taking my family here and enjoying the sunrise just with them. It made for a nice special moment and it really was the only opportunity for me to convince them all to get up that early and be somewhere for a sunrise with me.

The last few years though, the spot gets crowded by other photographers as excited about the beauty as us and it starts to remind me of the lines at some famous spots of some of the national parks. Is that the price of social media and the ever prevalent imagery from all of these beautiful spots? Will these places suffer as a result of their fame? I've just read an article about tourism becoming a problem in many areas of the world and this was kind of a showcase for me. Is humanity going to find a healthy balance of tourism providing funding for the areas without ruining them?

Then we heard the horn calling pilots to the pilot meeting. The sun cleared the horizon and the clouds and we were off to the Archery Field to get the verdict. While everything seemed promising to the laymen the decision was to cancel the launch. After a quick visit to the Middle Falls we headed back home to recharge for attempt #3 in the evening.

As expected, the area around Archery Field was packed. Saturday night, there was actually another reason to show up. In the afternoon, there was a skydiving show. We skipped that and arrived to see a beautiful balloon launch. And this time around, luck was on our side and I am sure all of the balloon crews were very happy too! It was a go!

I did not spend as much time in the launch area as in other years and headed across the road to find myself a different vantage point to get different photos than in the past. Enjoy the show!

Fred B Rabbit over Letchworth State Park, 17th Annual Red, White, and Blue Balloon Festival 2018Fred B Rabbit over Letchworth17th Annual Red, White, and Blue Balloon Festival

Fred B Rabbit over Letchworth State Park, 17th Annual Red, White, and Blue Balloon Festival 2018

Balloon Crowd at the Letchworth State Park Gorge, 17th Annual Red, White, and Blue Balloon Festival 2018Balloon Crowd at the Gorge17th Annual Red, White, and Blue Balloon Festival

Balloon Crowd at the Letchworth State Park Gorge, 17th Annual Red, White, and Blue Balloon Festival 2018

Descending into the Letchworth Gorge, Balloon Crowd at the Letchworth State Park Gorge, 17th Annual Red, White, and Blue Balloon Festival 2018Descending into the Gorge17th Annual Red, White, and Blue Balloon Festival 2018 It's always impressive to watch the pilots' skills at this location. They have to launch from the Archery Field meadow, climb high enough to clear the tree line lining the road on both sides, let the wind take them over the Genesee River gorge, and then let the balloons dip into the gorge. It always happens so quickly! They go up, zoom, and they go down.

Some enjoy hovering in the gorge area, some go really low, sometimes even for a dip in the river then creating a waterfall as the bucket loaded with water empties during their ascend. Some years, the balloons remain fairly static in the gorge, other years breeze pushes them up or down the river.

Balloon Parade, 17th Annual Red, White, and Blue Balloon Festival 2018Balloon Parade17th Annual Red, White, and Blue Balloon Festival 2018 This year, wind was taking them all north-north-east for an unusual route. After dipping down by the Big Bend of the Genesee River they were blown north alongside the western side of the park, not across towards Nunda, NY as usual. The winds were also very calm and kept most of the balloons together for quite the parade upon one's exit from the park.

For us, the show never ends with the balloons leaving the park. We always go for a chase to see at least one of them land. Along the way, we have had a chance to meet some of the balloon crews and even help them put the balloons away. It's a great way to learn more about this hobby and better understand what is happening behind the scenes. This year, thanks to the balloons staying close together, it was easy to see many of them look for a suitable landing spot and land. However, many landed further away from public roads and we did not want to follow their chase vehicles to private property and thus did not have an opportunity to say hi to some of our favorite crews from the past. Hopefully next year!

Searching for a Landing Spot, 17th Annual Red, White, and Blue Balloon Festival 2018Searching for a Landing Spot17th annual Red, White, and Blue Balloon Festival.

Searching for a Landing Spot, 17th Annual Red, White, and Blue Balloon Festival 2018

Aloft Horizons on Landing Approach, 17th Annual Red, White, and Blue Balloon Festival 2018Aloft Horizons on Landing Approach17th Annual Red, White, and Blue Balloon Festival 2018

Aloft Horizons on Landing Approach, 17th Annual Red, White, and Blue Balloon Festival 2018

Oh, and if you happen to know the team names associated with the various balloons I would love to hear from you. In the past, I attempted to create a balloon registry to properly tag my photographs but I never really pulled it off all the way.

Enjoy the beauty that surrounds you! (#etbtsy)

ReferencesBalloon Events Calendar on Balloon Federation of America - Letchworth State Park Map (South) - Balloons over Letchworth

Would you like to see more photographs from Western New York? Visit my Buffalo & Western New York Landscapes and enjoy! Please, let me know if you have any questions about any photo products offered, or not offered, I will be happy to help! For a quick reference to all photo galleries and collections as well as all photo products currently offered through my site, please, visit the Products page.

Do you like my free content but are not ready to buy a photograph for your walls yet? Using my links to do your shopping helps me share more photographs and write the stories behind them. And it costs you nothing. You just need to start your shopping by clicking on an advertised product or use the Amazon search box in bottom left. It does not matter what you eventually buy as long as you start here. I truly appreciate each purchase, no matter how small. Thank you!

Would you like to see my photographs printed, matted, and framed? Visit Picture Your Walls in Hamburg, NY (184 Buffalo St, Hamburg, NY 14075).

12th Annual Red, White & Blue Balloon Rally, Memorial Day Weekend, Letchworth State Park, Western New York. Hot Air Balloon over Great Bend.Balloon over Big Bend of LetchworthLetchworth 2013 Bright and Happy Abstract Colors of Hot Air Balloons, Letchworth State ParkBright and Happy ColorsLetchworth 2015 15th Annual Red, White & Blue Balloon Rally Festival, Letchworth State Park, Castile, NYSky Riders at 15th Annual Red, White & Blue Balloon RallyLetchworth 2016

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