Here I was, sitting with my husband waiting for our pasta dinners at an Italian sidewalk cafe just a few blocks from the Venice Beach Fishing Pier when he exclaimed “Hey, check this out. Here come some mounted police.” Sure enough, clip-clopping down the center of W. Washington Boulevard were two policemen on horseback. “Who would have thought in Venice Beach,” I said, and turned back to the table. “Here come a few more,” he said. And as we watched, all five walked their horses up to the Cold Stone Creamery, dismounted, and leaving one officer holding the reins to all five, four walked into the ice cream shop. “I have to get this!” I exclaimed. “Go, go, go,” he said.
So I grabbed my camera, ran across the street, and began shooting. I wasn’t the only one. People stopped with their cellphones to take photos of the police and their horses. More interested in getting the shot that included the storefront, I shot from the “rear view,” making sure I didn’t hold up any traffic.
In today’s heated social climate, I spoke to the officers afterwards and thanked them for their service. They were so very grateful, confessing they didn’t hear that often. This is not meant as any kind of political commentary; I simply wanted to acknowledge them.
Finished shooting, I went back to the table and my husband, who told me that, according to our waiter, these officers used to go to the Starbucks a few doors down; deciding instead that smoothies were healthier, they made Cold Stone their new coffee break stop. Caloriewise, I’m not so sure of their reasoning unless they were loading up on java chip frappuccinos, but hey, this is after all, Los Angeles and somehow the idea of smoothie-drinking police officers just seemed to fit. As for the horses? Yeah, I’m still surprised by that. Perhaps I should have titled this post “Only in L.A.”
For more of my work, visit VisualVenturing.com.
One of my favorite holiday destinations to getaway from the hubbub of New York life has turned out to be Lancaster, Pennsylvania a few hours drive from home. The Amish are a fascinating group of people who have somehow persisted and resisted the advances of modern day and still live like it used to be. While they do not fancy posing for photographs my recent visit armed with a 600mm lens helped capture this image from a distance.
This is the third post in our Guest Post series featuring Stacy Fischer. Although Stacy is quick to point out “I am a photography newbie” her images certainly don’t reflect that. I guess thats what is so great about photography. Whether you are a professional, amateur or newbie, a great image cannot tell the difference.
My name is Stacy Fischer and I was born in Huntington, New York (shout out to Joe!). My family moved from Long Island when I was about three years old, and I have spent the last 19 years living in McLean, Virginia, just outside of Washington, D.C.
Joe’s invitation to guest post on Monochromia took me totally by surprise. In fact, I asked him if he didn’t want to rethink his offer!
You see, I am a photography newbie. That’s not to say I haven’t had my Nikon D90 for years – about five years at this point — but until recently I used it on family vacations or at family events, shot only in automatic (I just couldn’t wrap my head around F-stops!), and knew nothing about composition.
That all changed in February with my foray into photoblogging. Visual Venturing, “Because everyone likes pictures,” grew out of my passion for visual design, but I never imagined what I would find: a wonderful, welcoming, supportive, incredibly talented community, a community I absolutely credit with my growth as a photographer. From studying your amazing photos, following your links, asking all kinds of questions, and receiving invaluable feedback, you have inspired me to learn everything I can about this wonderful art form.
My appreciation for black and white photography comes from participating in Leanne Cole’s and Laura Macky’s Monochrome Madness Challenge (http://leannecolephotography.com/category/mmc/). Learning to see the contrasts, shadows, and light that translate effectively into black and white photos has provided me with countless “aha” moments that have better informed my photography in general. And much to my surprise, I have come to truly enjoy the purity of black and white images. Also to my surprise, the two most liked photos on my blog are in black and white, though I chuckle that the most liked one is of nothing more than a wire attached to a tree stake, shot while I was experimenting with creating a shallow depth of field (see, I AM learning photographic principles!).
Monochromia is a wonderful forum in which to explore and to share this wonderful genre of black and white photography. Kudos, Joe, for creating this blog and many thanks for standing by your invitation. I am honored to share my story.