Archive for the ‘Photography’ Category

I realized today I’ve been posting lots of rambling narratives about Minnesota, so here’s a change of pace: Just photos, selected at random from my travels over the past five years. Stay tuned for more news from the road, coming soon …

The past week has brought a palpable shift toward spring to Minnesota. Yes, it’s still snowing. But instead of plunging below zero after each snowstorm — as is typical between late December and February — now we’re inching above freezing during the day. This has enticed me to spend a lot more time outside. Last […]

Rather than make grand resolutions for 2017, instead I chose a single small word to guide me through the new year: focus. I’d been trying to do too much, I decided. I would be happier and more fulfilled if I did less, and with greater attention. Then a bunch of unexpected things happened — my […]

I’ve always believed it’s my duty as a citizen to be engaged and informed. But lately I find myself reacting to the news in ways I never used to. It’s a reflexive and visceral response — even when events don’t directly affect me. My instinct is to discuss these events, because they’re important. But then […]

As an amateur photographer I have lots of bad habits, but by far the worst is not looking at my photos after I take them. Over time, the weight of all those photos becomes oppressive, as it can take hours to sort through my mostly crappy snapshots to pick out a handful of favorites. Eventually […]

The sky at home is (yet again) drippy and dark, so I’m turning to my archives for some sunshine. Esteban and I spent a few days in Arles last year. Because we’re both history buffs, we were keen to see the Roman ruins and the well-preserved medieval city. But mostly we came for the Provençal […]

From its doorknobs to its house numbers, Paris is rich in architectural details. But it was the city’s iconic pavers that led me on my most recent historical adventure. In some streets the pavers are still arranged in beautiful fan-like patterns. The rue de l’Abreuvoir offers a nice view of the Sacré Coeur in Montmartre, […]

The Cour du Commerce Saint-André in Paris’ sixth arrondissement is little more than a cobbled alley. Open only to pedestrians, it connects the tony and traffic-choked Boulevard Saint-Germain with the bustling little rue de Buci. But when you step onto its uneven paving stones, you’re stepping onto a spot where centuries of history converge. (Full […]

This is my fourth post in series about the unexpected historical connections that abound in Paris. See the past three days’ posts for other clues — or tune in on Sunday for the full story. The Place de la Concorde is not only Paris’ largest public square, but arguably its most historic. Its name changes […]

Although I missed the supermoon in Paris, seeing the moon set behind the Conciergerie was a lovely consolation. How many men and women have gazed at la lune from their prison cells over the centuries? This is my third post about the unexpected ties that bind Paris’ historical sites. See the past two days’ posts […]

One of my favorite things about Paris is that everything is somehow connected. Here’s the second clue. What does it have to do with yesterday’s photo? I will reveal all on Sunday. Paris’ pavers come in a variety of sizes. You’ll find large ones like these mostly along the quays that line the Seine river.

One of my favorite things about Paris is that everything is somehow connected. Over the next week I’ll show you seven photos that at first glance may seem unrelated — and next Sunday I’ll reveal what they share in common. The Place du Trocadéro offers a great view of the Eiffel Tower, but it had […]

Street photography is my Parisian passion. But when I’m traveling with other people, it’s unreasonable to ask them to wait a half hour until the right person walks into the frame. That’s why on this last trip I concentrated instead on small architectural details I could snap on the run, almost without missing a stride. […]

Photography often makes me adopt some strange positions. Such was the case when I slithered on my belly along Paris’ Seine river to frame this shot. So engrossed was I in my task that I barely registered the sound of the street-sweeping vehicle approaching from behind, nor did I notice it stopping. “Is everything alright, […]

I should have started my last post about Florida bugs with a confession: I could have avoided the whole thing by sticking to the paths … … instead of bushwhacking through the mangroves. Well, no matter. We’ve put the bugs behind us and have finally made it to the beach! During our trip to Florida […]

Esteban and I spent a week in Florida last November. It was bliss: We had a wonderful family gathering, lots of beautiful weather — and the ocean was literally right across the street from our hotel. It became a ritual for me to get up before dawn every morning and watch the sunrise on the […]

October has been a full month. Friends have been ailing. My loved ones have had health scares. I’ve been busy at work. I’ve been busy at home, too, as Esteban and I have begun preparing our home for sale. But through it all I’ve tried to pause for a few minutes of stillness and reflection […]

Fail harder


I read an article a while back about Johannes Haushofer, a professor of psychology and public affairs at Princeton University who wrote a rather unconventional résumé: rather than tout his accomplishments, instead he listed his failures. “Most of what I try fails, but these failures are often invisible, while the successes are visible,” Haushofer wrote. […]

I was going to whine about how busy the past month has been (because it has felt like the writer’s equivalent of a puppy mill). But then I stumbled across this photo I shot in May and was reminded that even when we’re quite literally running from one thing to the next, there’s still beauty […]

I may have emitted an involuntary little squeal last month when I happened across this scene in Paris: a Citroën deux-chevaux in front of the Place des Vosges. Could it get any more classic? But that wasn’t the first frame I shot. My first frame was an unimaginative, wide-angle snapshot. I take a lot of […]