Welcome to the online blog for traveler/writer/photographer Steven Barber.
Come in. Relax. Take off your shoes and socks -- or any other article of clothing, this is the internet.
Have a look around. I hope to intrigue, amuse, entertain, and maybe provoke you just a little.
I love to find adventure. All I need is a change of clothes, my Nikon, an open mind and a strong cup of coffee.
We're on the road for my wife's birthday celebration. Given her choice of possible locations, designed to burn as many hotel and airline Frequent Traveler points as possible, she settled on San Francisco and the California Wine Country.
We're not meeting up with friends (sorry guys!!!), nor doing any really touristy things. This is her birthday week and so we're doing things quietly and to ourselves, save for one or two work-related things I'm going to be doing. Fun stuff.
Last night we took in a play, and tonight it's a late-night dinner at a jazz joint.
Slept in to 8am, myself. That's three hours after my usual morning rise.
I'm taking the lazy morning as time to get some writing done on the book and update various websites. I could get used to this.
I was asked, recently, about the reference to "Street Photographer" in my bio on Facebook.
To me, this represents a particular aspect of photography, particularly Travel photography. It's much more a candid sort of work rather than posed shots or shots which have been carefully considered and made. Lined up to a specific angle before the shutter is triggered.
With street photography the world becomes a series of patterns and cues, of events which must be observed then caught at a moment in time that essentially tells a story.
I teach this in my Travel Photography classes. That while some travel photography is, of course, capturing someone's presence, and perhaps the face or actions of an adventure, or maybe a static shot of a monument or geographic feature, some other and equally interesting images are those which are essential "Street Photography". Capturing life as it happens.
Britannica.com describes it as "a genre that records everyday life in a public place."
One of the masters of the genre is Henri Cartier-Bresson , who dragged his trusty Leica and heavy gear into the streets of the city and recorded life as he saw it. I commend his work to you on this page. He put it, much poetically, this way:
Accordingly, this quote is what changed my, ahem, focus as a photographer, away from taking static travel shots and towards attempts to capture places and people as I find them.
Cities around the world deal with the traffic crunches in their areas in different ways. New York has its subways, Paris has Le Metro, New Delhi has a bus and taxi system that defies pretty much all known laws of physics.
Amsterdam employs a very effective and environmentally-friendly tram system.
The problem, of course, is deciding where you want to go....
(This is how themes get started. Post a shot one day, and then realize four days later you've got a theme. Who knew?)
The Atlantic Ocean, formed as the African and European continents splits from the Americas millennia ago. It is certainly more turbulent than its larger Pacific cousin, with a dramatic history and influence on the human world.
This is the coastline of North Carolina, on Emerald Isle. A cold Autumn squall is headed in.
To continue the unofficial theme of the week, today's coastline is the Gulf of Mexico.
Pensacola, Florida, to be precise. Gorgeous wide and white sand beaches, so bright they almost hurt the eyes. And in Summer time the weather is hot, humid and unpredictable. Shortly after this shot a squall moved in sending beachgoers fleeing for cover.
Much to our national disgrace, the current administration continues to fail Puerto Rico when it comes to recovery efforts from Hurricane Maria. Six months after 15% of Puerto Riquenos - who are American citizens - don't have power.
Meanwhile the administration had fallen over backwards to help when Texas was hit a month earlier.
It's humiliating and wrong. We used to be better than this.