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Cityscapes – Lights, Camera, Action…

Although the majority of my work tends to be of the natural world, I also have an affinity for creating images in urban spaces, particularly big cities such as New York and Chicago. The combination of architecture, artificial lighting and constant movement creates a multitude of TS Cab and Kiss_5195 Final 1000w

Times Square Cab and Kiss, NYC, New York, 2013

photographic opportunities. The image above was one that I first formulated in my mind’s eye. Dodging rain drops, once the traffic light changed allowing cabs to pass in front of me in the middle of Times Square, I moved my tripod out from under cover. A slightly slower shutter speed caught the cab’s motion while still being fast enough to freeze the surrounding people and constantly changing, brightly lit signs. An extra bonus in this image is in the lower left corner, just behind the cab’s rear window, a couple kissing under an umbrella waiting for the light to change.Rush Hour Grand Central Station Smart Fix lite FINAL 1000w

       Rush Hour, Grand Central Station, NYC, New York, 2009

Again, pre-conceiving the image, I set my tripod up on the upper level concourse of Grand Central Station. Using a slow shutter speed I captured the rush of people heading to and from their trains while others stand and wait for theirs. The classic architecture and subject called for a Black and White image here. 400 year old Fine Art paper maker, Hahnemuhle must have agreed when they used it to show off their product at the Photo Expo Plus in New York City.Dont_Let_the_Lights_Go_Out_on_Broadway

                               Don’t Let the Lights Go Out on Broadway, NYC, 2012

This image was the result of an opportunity that arose while I was shooting in Times Square with a tripod fixated on the usual nightly action. Upon spotting this scene I quickly swung my camera around and caught this image of an electrician maintaining the antique street light posts that run up and down Broadway and 7th Avenue. Juxtaposed against the massive, modern, brightly lit digital video screens, these small, classic covered lights, atop antique poles, maintain the charm of old New York amongst the city’s modern-day extreme urban brilliance. The trick with shooting in Times Square is catching a pleasing composition of the quickly and constantly changing imagery on the screens.

(With a nod to the Billy Joel song) this worker (who, when the image is enlarged, can be seen on his cell phone), is extended high up and perched inside an electrician’s crane basket making sure the lights (no matter how small)…don’t go out on Broadway.

Happy Holiday Season 2017 / Let there be Light… Displays

Wherever you are located in the country, this time of year brings out varying forms of holiday light displays. For generations they have come to represent the spirit of the season. So, whether you are in the city:Ornaments Color 585 w                                                  Ornaments, New York City, NY 2012

in the suburbs:img_7288                                                  Holiday Light Display, Davie, FL 2013

or even in the mountains:311220131392369_lit_tree__winter_park_2 lite                                                         Lit Tree, Winter Park, CO 2007

The tradition will inevitably be handed down for generations to come:img_7355                                                      Enlightenment, Davie, FL 2013

                                            Wishing a Happy Holiday season to all.

Varying Techniques used to Photograph Supermoons Over the Years

supermoon is a full moon (opposite Earth from the sun) that closely coincides with perigee – the moon’s closest point to Earth in its monthly elliptic orbit. When the moon always swings farthest away from Earth once each month; that point is called apogee. These perigee, or

Nuclear SuperMoon 0387 Horiz Final 1000wNuclear Supermoon

supermoons, result in what seems like a larger-than-usual apparent size as viewed from Earth. There are 4-6 supermoons a year on average and can cause real physical effects, such as

Reflected in Water_0397 1000wSupermoon Reflected

larger-than-usual tides. From a photographic standpoint, supermoons also take on a deep reddish tint as they rise from the horizon, lightening in color to yellow and/or tan and then, eventually

IMG_9711 Allure and Supermoon FINAL 2 lite 1000Supermoon and Cruise Ship

to the regular, although a bit brighter, white. Due to the unique nature of this phenomenon, I have tried to capture supermoons in various ways over the years. In order of presentation here:

img_9699-crop-1000Supermoon and Distant Bird

(1.) has an effect similar to a nuclear explosion as the moon seems to be exploding from the horizon, (2.) within a second or two after that, the moon has risen above the horizon and

Best BW Birds on Crane_0190 crop Horiz FINALBirds Eye View

leaves a glint of reflection underneath, (3.) a cruise ship’s embarkation timed to pass the supermoonrise, (4.) a dusk supermoon also has a very distant bird silhouetted against the

Super Moon 0084_FINAL_Crop Landscape38 Clouded Supermoon at Dusk

bottom, left corner,(5.) several birds silhouetted against a blurred, high rising moon offers another take on how to capture the scene. Finally (6.) a clouded moon framed as it rises between the silhouette of two trees at dusk.

Clearly, the phenomenon offers countless possibilities to capture a…super image.

 

America….My Country, Tis of Thee

Through the lunacy these days of our political “landscape” (pun intended), it is crucial for us all to remember the simple basics for which we stand. From the physical beauty of our land to the inner

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Nubble Light, York, Maine 2004

beauty of so many of our good people, it is a national pride that should join us all. To me, these classic images created along the coast of Maine are the epitome of the feeling of Americana. The commonly shot Nubble Light above was perfectly lit at low tide when I came upon it while two seabirds were circling the tiny island that sits 100 yards off of Cape Neddick Point.

I watched as the two birds circled, and timed the shot so that one bird fit the composition of the scene in the sky while the other blended into the image just above the little red shed.

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New England Light, Maine Coast 2004

The bottom image was shot at dusk in what was again, perfectly warm New England light. The tiny white specs on the rocks and in the water are seabirds settling in for the night.

I will never forget stopping to ask directions from a local to the best place to eat lobster. He was out for an evening walk and did everything short of drawing me a map, going well out of his way to make sure that I knew exactly where I was going before I pulled off.

To me, these are true examples of America…and, btw, the lobster was unbelievable.

Happy Holidays 2016

Wishing you and yours a happy holiday season…

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White Christmas, Rockefeller Center, NYC 2009

 As if on cue, while visiting Rockefeller Center during the holidays in 2009, the snow began to fall over this iconic scene. Backing up behind the row of trumpeting angels, I shot this familiar, but still magical, view.

It was lucky that I got this shot when I did. The next year I went back their was a photographic set up at this spot, with a long line of tourists willing to pay big bucks to have their photo taken in front of this scene.

Lesson learned, always capture the classics when they come up, you never know if…or when they will ever be available again.

Duncan Miller Gallery, Los Angeles recognizes Barry Steven Greff’s image: Rush Hour, Grand Central Station in their Your Daily Photograph

rush-hour-grand-central-station-smart-fix-lite-final-1000wRush Hour, Grand Central Station, NYC 2009

© Barry Steven Greff

Duncan Miller Gallery in LA runs an on-line gallery called Your Daily Photograph. YDP is “An invaluable resource for collectors of fine art photography.

Again, for the second time, YDP curators have chosen a BSG image, “Rush Hour, Grand Central Station” for inclusion on YDP. see: Your Daily Photograph .

Recent images from photography masters Henri Cartier-Bresson, Andreas Gursky, Richard Misrach, Andre Kertesz, Edward Burtynsky and other photography legends have appeared in YDP. YourDailyPhotograph.com only selects a very small percentage of photographs submitted. On this particular YDP, Barry’s image is posted under Edward Weston‘s Chambered Nautilus, one of a handful of the most recognizable (and expensive when a signed original) fine art photographs ever created.

Classic images can  be viewed daily at: http://www.yourdailyphotograph.com/

The main web-site for the Gallery is at: http://www.duncanmillergallery.com/ and in addition to their Los Angeles gallery, they now have a new, second location in Santa Monica, CA.

As usual, I am grateful for the recognition from such a prestigious gallery.

Barry Steven Greff Photography
www.barrystevengreff.com

Thunder Road / Diary of a Storm / Approaching Destruction

For those of you that do not live in South Florida, or on the southeast coast, you are most likely unaware of our “hurricane protocol.” As Hurricane Matthew approaches within the next 24 hours, I thought I would reflect on what we have become accustomed to with these storms.

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Thunder Road, Weston, FL 2013

Unlike other major weather events around the country we have the advantage of “notice.” We know a hurricane is approaching within a few days. The actual path, intensity and final landfall are still speculation to the weather experts until almost the last-minute. Even though the news stations broadcast 24 hours a day about the storm, showing its “projected” track, it is not until just before it reaches us that we know who it will hit and how hard. A slight “wobble” east or west can make all the difference in the world but when the male weather forecasters remove their sports jackets and roll up their sleeves, you know we are in for a rough ride.

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The Wind of Wilma, Weston, FL 2005

In Andrew I took a hit, while my friend’s homes a bit further south were obliterated. The aftermath looked like a bomb had detonated, even the street signs were gone and it was almost impossible to navigate. As time goes on, your luck runs out and for Wilma, I was ground zero. To see your pool screen being ripped and mangled out of the ground and your large trees being uprooted is a surreal experience. The wind sounds like a fright train, the exterior walls move in and out and your front door rattles as if it will burst open (if it does, you’re toast). Finally, when the heavy, attached cement barrel tiles start to rip off your roof, you know you are close to disaster. That’s when we grabbed a mattress and hunkered down underneath it as far away from any windows as possible. Luckily, Wilma stopped just short of total disaster, but still took several years to come back from.

Going, Going…Gone, Wilma, Weston FL 2005

Thankfully, we have lived through the storms we have faced so far and hopefully will do so with Matthew, which is bearing down on us right now. The anticpation of its arrival motivated me to  get this post out while I still had power…and a roof.

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The Power of Mother Nature, Wilma, Weston, FL 2005

Here’s hoping that we just experience some really bad weather without the potential destruction it can bring… until the next one.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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