WWI Soldier Grotesque – Smith Hall, Univ. of Washington
This WWI soldier grotesque has intrigued me since I first attended the University of Washington in 1968. It is located on Smith Hall in the University of Washington Quadrangle. The figure commemorates WWI complete with the gas mask.
Over the years, I have photographed this grotesque multiple times. For some reason, my images have not turned out: out of focus, too light, too dark, or branches/leaves cluttering the image. During my last visit, I was determined to get an acceptable image. I was lucky that it was an overcast day. The soft light on the soldier was relatively even without deep shadows. I walked around to get a perspective that gave me the most eerie mood.
Gettysburg – North Carolina Monument
Surrounded by dogwood trees (the North Carolina state tree), the monument features figures of North Carolina infantrymen advancing during Pickett’s Charge, where fifteen infantry regiments from North Carolina participated and suffered heavy casualties. One man kneels injured on the ground, pointing towards the enemy with his proper left hand while two men wield guns and look forward. A fourth man holds a flag in both hands as he glances forward.
The North Carolina Monument is my favorite in Gettysburg. To me it best depicts the feeling of the Southern soldiers as they faced the onslaught of the Union guns during Pickett’s Charge. It sends shivers through my body every time I visit.
This battle fought 152 years ago just prior to Independence Day, marked the turn of the war that kept our Country united.
Louisiana Memorial – “Peace and Memory”
I have not posted an entry during the whole month of June. I will try to do a little better this month. On a trip to Gettysburg National Battlefield last month I was able to get images of a few memorials and battlefield scenes. I processed them using Nik Silver Efex Pro sepia toning to fit the character of the past.
Donald De Lue named his memorial sculpture “Peace and Memory”. He explained, “It flies over the battlefield blowing the long, shrill clarion call on the trumpet over the long forgotten shallow graves of the Confederate dead. It is taps for the heroic dead at Gettysburg.” De Lue explained the female figure is “Spirit Triumphant”, symbolizing the survival of the spirit and the ideas of these men that they did not die in vain. The eternal flame held in the other hand symbolizes the memory of these gallant men. It is the embodiment of the spirit that went into the Battle of Gettysburg with them.”
Louisiana had approximately 3031 soldiers engaged at the Battle of Gettysburg. 724 of them were casualties for a loss of 23.9%. This percentage placed Louisiana 22nd in rank of all the states that had soldiers at Gettysburg.
Fuji X-T1, XF 18-135mm @ 49mm, f/9, 1/280 sec, ISO 200
This image was taken at the “Garden of Memories” near Newtown, PA. The Gardens memorialize the 9/11 tragedy. Along its spiral walk it memorializes the 2973 people killed, the the 58 Pennsylvania victims, the 42 children from Pennsylvania who lost a parent, and the 18 Bucks County victims. On the inner ring of the spiral, the Bucks County victims are etched in glass. It is a quiet and peaceful place. A place to walk, sit, and reflect. Remember … on this Memorial Day!
Canon 5D MarkIII, EF24-70mm f/2.8L @ 32mm, f/5.6, 1/1000 sec, ISO 1600
I am always searching for things that catch my eye. I cannot classify my style as a landscape photographer, an architectural photographer, a portrait photographer, a macro photographer or other genre. What interests me most are details … things that just pop up and catch my eye. This image in an example. I was looking around at the entryway and the architecture of the Flagler College in St. Augustine, FL. I took several images of the overall entrance structure. But what really caught my eye was this sculpture of a lion’s head on one of the entrance pillars.
Fuji XT-1, XF-18-55mm @ 55mm, f/11, 1/17 sec, ISO 400
Rodin – The Thinker
It was an extremely bright day. Light was blasting through the gaps in the leaf canopy. It was difficult to get a decent exposure. My color images looked terrible. But it was a good day for B&W.
Fuji X-T1, XF18-55mm @ 55mm, f/4.0, 1/1200 sec, ISO 400
I could not let this iconic sculpture in downtown Philly pass by. It was Red, so I shot it of course. To further highlight the red, I converted to B&W with NIK Silver Efex Pro and used selective color.
I am posting this today for my wonderful wife on her birthday!
Fuji XT-1, XF 18-55mm @ 28mm, f/22, 1/17 sec, ISO 200
This image is from the other site of Swann Fountain, depicting the other two rivers: Schuykill and Delaware. My focus for this image was just to come up with a symmetric balance between the sculptures. One lesson learned here is to pay attention to the aperture, shutter speed, and ISO trade offs. I braced the camera on the fountain wall to get a reasonable sharpness at 1/17 second.
Fuji XT-1, XF18-55mm @ 50mm, f/11, 1/80 sec, ISO 500
Swann Memorial Fountain (aka The Fountain of the Three Rivers)
Alexander Stirling Calder, 1924
This fountain in Logan Circle depicts the three rivers that converge at Philadelphia: the Schuykill, the Wissahickon, and the Delaware. In this image I was trying to capture the fountain image and the Philadelphia City Hall in the background. I also wanted to capture limited blur in the flowing water.
Fuji XT-1, XF18-55mm @ 46mm, f/10, 1/20 sec, ISO 400
Tuscan Girl Fountain
Oskar Stonorov, Jorio Vivarelli, 1965
Philadelphia is full of sculptures. Walking around Center City, sculptures are everywhere you look. The overall sculpture draws my initial attention, but typically does not make an interesting photographic image to me. It is very difficult for me to capture the three dimensional aspects. I then usually just walk around and try to get a detailed aspect and perspective of the sculptures essence. I moved around this sculpture to capture an interesting element and a “nondescript” background to frame the image.