CROSS POLLINATION

Cross pollination – that seems like an appropriately seasonal term for what happened when I met Patti Kuche, a fellow blogger, in New York last month.

I’ve always loved Patti’s blog, and I had a hunch that meeting with her would be fortuitous. With basically no planning, we got in touch and agreed to meet up at the Rubin Museum cafe, a good place to relax, talk, and get a bite to eat without feeling pressured to move on. (Was our meeting subtly influenced by the Himalayan Buddhist art only steps away? Maybe).

I liked Patti instantly – there was none of that dissonance that sometimes happens when you “know” someone in the digital world and then meet them in person. We had a terrific time talking…and talking. But what was special that day was that I came away inspired. Really inspired. When she picked up my camera, turned it over in her hands, flipped a switch and started shooting, it was like some bubble burst and grew inside me – it’s hard to describe, but something about her approach and ease with the camera revealed the potential for other ways into my relationship with that tricky black box.

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Patti was curious about the Art filters in the camera, so she dialed around through a few of them and shot what we saw from our table. The shots above and below haven’t been processed at all.

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We covered cameras, processing, blogging, tumblr, flickr and the rest. It’s too bad we couldn’t spend more time together – I would love to roam the streets with her. But no reason to complain. It was good just as it was (yes, the Rubin Buddhism influence is seeping in).

I started using the art filters again. I had tried them out when I first got the camera, but then reverted back to aperture priority.

It was one of those days when the light was all wrong and few interesting scenes presented themselves. I walked with an off-center kind of feeling, questioning of my own approach. Here and there, I found a few opportunities.Β  The green tables ready to be set up for an event under the green foliage of Union Square, and the snaking fence with its yellow caution tape were nice. Three stools in a coffee shop begged to be shot with the Dramatic Tone filter, and Sycamore tree shadows reaching around the corner of a building seemed right for the sepia filter.

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Sometimes you get lucky! In the subway I pressed the shutter just as the train left the 14th Street station, resulting in a layered double exposure look that I couldn’t have planned.

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If you like speeding trains, take a look at Patti’s latest shot of one – it’s fantastic.

***
After I got back home, we emailed. I sent Patti the photos she took and asked her which were her favorites.
“Great fun playing with your camera. Β My preferences are 555 and 556 as whole shots – the setting seems to suit the filters and while I like the 558 & 559 filters I want to move the chair from the bottom R corner. Plus they have hands in funny places.
One question, are you able to change filters in-camera post shooting?”
You can’t change filters once you’ve taken the shot, but no need! I like what she did.

 

Here’s another one:

 

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There’s that intrusive chair!

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Let’s do something about it:

 

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Not quite successful, but it’s all about experimenting, and learning.

And learn I did.

In the cafe, Patti shot what she saw – people. It’s something I rarely do because it makes me uncomfortable. Patti has a knack for disarming people. She can walk up to people and get the most wonderful expressions.Β  She has a way of seeing – and revealing – the humanity in any given moment.

We all have our strengths as artists and we want to develop them, which includes trying out new things, however uncomfortable. But taking photos of strangers? That’s tough for me.

Yesterday we drove up into the mountains to a tiny town called Index. It’s a center for whitewater rafting and rock climbing. The Outdoor Adventure Center there operates a cafe where they serve up bratwurst hot off the grill alongside a slew of local beers. We stopped for a bite. As we sat down, I noticed two tired-looking men at a table with taped-up hands. The dirty, worn tape across their knuckles spoke volumes. Before they could start cutting it off, I bravely walked over and asked if I could photograph their hands.

I thought of Patti. (“Patti would have no trouble with this. Just do it!”).

They obliged.

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So here’s to meeting new friends and being inspired. Many of you have gotten together with other bloggers when traveling. It’s just one aspect of the cross pollination that is happening all the time. Cheers to that!

 

 

 

 

 


26 comments

  1. I love the expansion you’re getting into. What an adventure. Cross pollination looks like a good thing. Perhaps some day one of us will venture north or south and do some more… that would be fun.

    Yeah, I’ve met a few bloggers over the years. Every single occasion has been fun and I even met up with my beloved Eric through our blogs. Not at all something I was expecting. Who would have thunk?

  2. Oh Lyn, what a beautiful post and yes, I so wish we could keep talking! Please know how much I have always adored your keen, tender eye and photographic skills, what you do so well with your little black box- the adventurous hands which say so much and the slide of the trombone seeing out the speeding train from the platform, absolutely fabulous! You have always set a high bar and I thank you forever for your inspiration and friendship both here and in real time. So hope it’s not too long before the next time. Again, big thank you and here’s to cross pollination!

  3. I’m so glad you had a wonderful time in New York with Patti Lynn. There’s nothing like sharing ideas and getting inspiration from other people. This is a fabulous post with some great picturres. You do great things with your tricky black box, expanding on that I can’t wait to see. πŸ™‚

    • Oh, and you’re one of the people who inspire the rest of us with – not only your work, but with your adventures with blogging friends, which always sound fabulous. That’s certainly partly what made me jump in. Thank you!

  4. Yes, always good to share ideas – and I’m uncomfortable around photographing people too. I like the pictures here, Lynn, especially the three stools and the one below that, but I can’t get to use in-camera filters, I’ve always gone for the blandest of RAW images and then thought what to do with the image post-capture – as always, we are all different! Adrian

  5. There’s that tree, bending its shadow around the corner of the building. Love it! And I really like all the snaky things (tree trunks and fences) in the photo following itβ€”and the subway shot!

    • It was pretty cool the way that tree shadow bent around the corner. But also funny that even in the city, I am drawn to the trees! But I love the buildings, too, and the subways do present their own opportunities, with luck.

  6. I love that you two got together! Patti is that kind of person that you instantly feel comfortable with and I think that’s part of the reason her street photography is so good. I love these shots, the tones are wonderful! I think my fave is the subway and the motion blur.

  7. Fantastic final shot, and gotta love the attitude πŸ™‚ It is great to catch up with someone to discuss the craft of photography ~ and it sounds (and looks) like you both covered a lot of ground.

  8. How brilliant. Sounds like you inspired each other, a great energy comes from your description, and your images!


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