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Here In Oakland

Art & Life


April 26, 2013

Another Friday Night
Friday. There was indeed a new episode of Elementary that played last night and so to bed just after eleven, to sleep and then to sleep reasonably well until the alarm. Was it worth the shortened sleep? Oh, probably not.

Anyway, breakfast at the usual place bringing along a camera with the 105mm macro lens to get a better shot of the pandorea buds. They could have used a greater depth of field and so next time I'll stop down the lens another notch. You learn the exact same things over and over. I seem to, anyway.

The guitar lesson is coming up at ten, so a quick run through the lesson in preparation before I head out. There's a demonstration being held in front of the Oakland City Hall early this evening and I may go if it's still light. I know (in thinking about it) I probably won't - too late in the evening, the bus a hassle, too hard to park - but we'll at least think about it.

What kind of a demonstration?

They asked people to bring noise makers. Fireworks were mentioned. Probably not the best mix for a quiet, easy on an old photographer, night.

Later. The finger picking exercise didn't play itself, but we got through it alright. Better than I was expecting with Sunshine of Your Love, not because the playing is difficult, but because I hadn't played along enough with the music to have the changes memorized. Although I remembered the changes. Go figure.

Still somewhat overcast, but signs of sun. I'm hungry, there should be a way to go out there and remedy that. We're still wrestling with those three extra pounds (now down to two), but we had a light breakfast (paying more attention to avoiding potential ocular symptoms than appeasing an appetite) and a decent lunch wouldn't hurt. If I can think of something I'd like to eat.

Later still. An atypical afternoon. Waiting on a bus to head downtown, two women literally bumped into me and asked if I was a photographer (the camera slung over my shoulder probably sending them the clue) and would I take their portraits, could they call later and arrange a place and a time? It was a little more complicated than that and a little more off the wall, they wanted me to skip wherever I was going and tag along with them, but I at least said OK to the portraits and gave them my phone number written on one of my artandlife cards just as the bus arrived.

I'd headed out earlier with the 180mm f 2.8 telephoto lens to check the lake, but hadn't found any birds about and, since a bus had been coming just as I was walking back, I'd gone downtown to see if I could talk myself into lunch and discovered the Chalkupy people working on a new mural. Not something easily shot with an 180mm lens (270mm, really, as it was attached to a 1.5x camera), so I took a single picture, turned right around to catch another bus back to the apartment to change cameras and then immediately set out again (meeting the two women at the stop).

Anyway, downtown again, pictures of the chalk people, a walk to the City Center to have a salad and a piece of chicken out at a table, a walk back thirty minutes later to take more pictures and now back home. I'll be surprised if the two women call about portraits, but then I do like taking portraits, doesn't matter if the subjects seem to have more “too good to be true” chicanery about them than not.

Too good to be true? Chicanery?

They really didn't ring true. Nothing too off-putting, other than they'd either just arrived from outer space and had no concept of local norms, or they were way too good at manipulating local norms and sent up flags. Or am I overly suspicious? And no, they didn't come across as ladies looking to turn a quick, um, profit; they were, well, they were either from outer space or completely without guile.

Evening. An odd assemblage of television I didn't want to watch, some time on the guitar, a glance at the watch to see that the noise maker demonstration had started without me - my, my - some more futzing with pictures and then to bed before ten. So much for another Friday night.

The photo up top was taken at the San Francisco Cherry Blossom Festival Parade with a Nikon D4 mounted with a 70-120mm f 2.8 VR II Nikkor lens.