Remember the “Many Loves of Dobie Gillis” TV sitcom back in the late 50’s and early 60’s? Each episode started and ended with a little soliloquy of Dobie talking in front of “The Thinker.” Dobie was always contemplating on what the important things in life were: Girls and Money (used to get Girls). Things were much simpler back then. I decided to make good use of my “social isolation” time and did a little searching and found season 1, episode 1 of the show. It made me smile as I thought back to those simpler times and the start of the “beat” generation.
Fifty plus years later, I found myself standing along Rodin’s “The Thinker” in downtown Philadelphia. It was a difficult time for me then. I took the time to admire Rodin’s sculpture, clear my mind, and refocus my thoughts on what was the most important thing I could do moving forward. The answer was simple, live each and every day to its fullest.
Today was one of those days. I started sharing coffee and breakfast with my dear wife. We had a nice discussion, then went out to work in and enjoy our developing landscape. Later I came in for lunch and a nice afternoon nap. I woke up, did a little reading, then reviewed some of my older photography work, including this image of “The Tinker.” It triggerd old memories and I watched the episode of Dobie Gillis. Enjoying time with my wife, enjoying nature and getting a little exercise, reading to stimulate my mind, studying some classic art through my photographs, and watching a little past history … it was a simple, wonderful, and full day.
Surrounded by dogwood trees (the North Carolina state tree), the monument features figures of North Carolinainfantrymen 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.
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.
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!
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!
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.
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.
Ben Franklin, “The Printer”, provides the foreground against the Philadelphia skyline. I worked this image from multiple angles before I came up with this perspective. I had to wait patiently as other tourists posed in front of the sculpture. It was worth it.