Chapala

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A quiet afternoon on Lake Chapala, Jalisco, Mexico, taken with my iPhone. Or, as I prefer to call it, my iCamera, since I seldom talk on it, but am constantly taking photographs with it. It is, after all, always in my pocket or my hand, ready to freeze a moment in time.

I have been photographing for as long as I’ve been painting. I never cared for darkrooms and smelly chemicals, though. I was for a long time, a taker of photographs, but not a maker of photographs.

“You don’t take a photograph, you make it.” Ansel Adams

I used the camera mainly as a sketch book for my career as a painter.

Then the digital age came along and opened photography to me as more than just a way of gathering ideas for my paintings. I could now do the things with my photos that I had not been able to do in a darkroom. And more.

I worked my way through a number of digital cameras, and had a lot of fun. I still used the camera mainly as a sketch tool for my career as a painter. The thought of photography as a second career, however, was slowly invading my thinking.

After all, I’ve been painting full time, now, for fifty years. How could I possibly devote the majority of my time to photography? Increasingly, I began to think of myself as a painter and a photographer.

Then it dawned on me. I am an artist. Whether using a brush or a shutter. or, for that matter, a burnt stick, a pencil, or my finger. Or an app.

Oh, I still paint, but photography, that is, art made on my iPhone or my iPad, after the picture, the sketch, is taken, is increasingly more satisfying to me, somehow.

I know that some of you prefer my paintings to my photos, but I hope you will bear with me for a while. Give the photos a chance to grow on you as they have for me. They are my art, too. I’ll be sharing them here, on this blog, and on Instagram, for the foreseeable future. I don’t know when paintings will come back to the fore, or even if they will.

Meanwhile, I’m planning ways of sharing what I’ve learned, and my enthusiasm, my passion for mobile, smart phone, camera phone photography, or, as it’s most popularly known, iPhoneography.

I will be offering photo workshops and photo tours, and combining them with my love of travel.

This blog will become a way of explaining, sharing, teaching, discussing, and exposing my followers to my photography, and, specifically, the world of iPhoneography.

Wow! It’s great to be back!

I’m Back!

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Whew! I took a day off, it turned into a few days, then weeks, then months. I have been busy, though. Since my last post, I’ve traveled in Argentina, Uruguay, Panamá, and Guatemala.

When my long time favorite blogging app, Blogsy, stopped working due to changes in the iOS operating system on the iPhone and iPad making it no longer feasible for the developer to keep up, I was at a loss. I wasn’t familiar, at that point with using the WordPress software, which I found rather non-intuitive and confusing, and had started posting photographs to Instagram every day, which I found to be much easier, so I just went with it. And time slipped away.

I’ve been back in Taos since early May, and have managed to stay extremely busy. Thea and I led a six day photo tour through the Navajo, Hopi, and Zuni reservations, and I’ve been photographing rodeos and Taos Pueblo and, of course, street photography like crazy.

At the same time, I’ve been working feverishly on putting together a series of new workshops and tours. I’ll be announcing them soon, and opening them for pre-registration. I hope you will stay tuned and keep an eye out here and on Instagram for the news.

I’ve also been working on a new website which has been keeping my nose firmly applied to the grindstone. It still is, in fact. More on that coming soon, as well.

If you are still signed up, and receive this post, I would really appreciate a quick “still here” message from you in the comment section below. Thank you in advance.

I’m happy to report that WordPress seems much more accessible than the last time I tried it. I will try and keep this blog going, now, as well as Instagram and the new website. I am thinking of maybe combining my old When a Painter Snaps blog with this one, and possibly moving it all to a new spot on my website, thereby making the archives of all three more readily accessible. We’ll see. Somewhere, though, I do want to get a daily blog moving again.

The image above is a self portrait taken in the mirror of a Lucha Libre (Mexican wrestler) mask display, while passing through Mexico last November.

Until tomorrow….

John

 

 

THE LION AND THE DUCK

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THE LION AND THE DUCK / Parque Unidad Latinoamericana / Palermo Viejo / Buenos Aires, Argentina / iPhone 6s Plus / Snapseed

RED HORSE

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RED HORSE / Palermo Viejo / Buenos Aires, Argentina / iPad Air 2 / Snapseed

It’s been a while since I posted a found still life, one of my favorite things to make with a camera. I just happened to have my iPad in my hand when I glanced down and saw this accidental or unintended arrangement on the table in my Buenos Aires apartment. Like they say, the best camera is the one you have atbhand.

HOT TANGO

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HOT TANGO / Barrio Boedo, Buenos Aires, Argentina / iPhone 6s Plus / Snapseed

Cropped, spotted, framed, period.

Follow along, see what I see, as I travel with my iCamera in Mexico, Argentina, and beyond. I will be traveling light, moving slow, planning as little as possible. Mostly street photography, but anything else that catches my eye.

 

THE SWIMMER

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THE SWIMMER / Palermo Soho, Buenos Aires, Argentina / iPhone 6s Plus / Snapseed

I was nearing the end of a long, hot day of exploring the Palermos Soho neighborhood in Buenos Aires, near Palermo Viejo, where I’ve been renting an apartment this month. I was leaving the Distrito Arcos outdoor shopping mall, a huge, crowded mall, filled with last minute shoppers, when I happened to glance upwards and a pattern of dark, angular shapes, clad in stylish corrugated, deliberately rusted steel, offset by rectangular apartment buildings bathed in late afternoon sunlight, stark against the blue Argentinian sky caught my eye. A quick snap for future reference and I moved on.

Days later, looking through my images, this scene again caught my eye. That’s when I first noticed the fascinating sculptural, muralistic detail of partiers on the top of the building, an integral part of the architecture. I thought this was definitely worth featuring and began tweaking the perspective, experimenting with cropping, subtly bringing out the color and detail. Then I saw him. A tiny, shirtless figure, high on the left side of the building. I zoomed in, saw rhe glass panels that surely meant he was enjoying relaxing, sunning himself, beside a rooftop swimming pool. That did it! A bit more cleaning up and Bingo! There was my post for today, both on Instagram and this blog.

I hope you will enjoy discovering The Swimmer as much as I did.

Chau, Hasta luego…

Follow along, see what I see, as I travel with my iCamera in Mexico, Argentina, and beyond. I will be traveling light, moving slow, planning as little as possible. Mostly street photography, but anything else that catches my eye

 

WHITE CHRISTMAS

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On the day before Christmas Eve, when I photographed this sun worshipper in the park near the Recoleta Crmetery, I was petty sure we would not have a White Christmas here in Buenos Aires.

That’s why I’m here, after all, snowbird that I am.

I hope that yours is a White Christmas, if that is your preference. Either way, I wish you a Merry Christmas.