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Tag Archives: People

Thinking back on a unique Korean experience

korean kidsI came across an old photo today and all these years later it makes me feel as good as it did that day. I was lucky to work for the Associated Press at the 1988 Olympics in Seoul, Korea. I worked the evening shift, so during the day I would go out and shoot around the Olympics. One day I got on the subway and headed out to a neighborhood away from the Olympics. It was a fairly poor area and it didn’t take long to realize not a lot of 6’2″ guys with blonde hair wandered their streets.

I noticed a young boy and girl walking across the the street from me and they were giggling and gawking at me. I waved to them and they waved back. It continued for a few blocks and they disappeared. I thought it was a pretty cool experience when the two appeared again. They came over to my side of the street and were carrying three ice cream cones, one for each of them and one for me. What a surprise!

It was one of the nicest gestures ever. We stood there eating our ice cream and laughing. I pointed to my camera to ask them if I could make a picture of them. They gladly posed, waved goodbye and headed off down a side street. I wished I was able to go to their house but at least I had a great memory and a nice photo. It was fun thinking about it again today.

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Day two of Vermont Fall Foliage Workshop

ChittendenWe did a ton of driving yesterday seeking the best color in the leaves. We found some good spots up north, but today I kept us closer to home so we could shoot more and drive less. We started the day at Chittenden Reservoir, which always looks good. There are usually several other photographers there but we had the place to ourselves this morning. For a good while there was no wind and people made some great reflection shots in the water.

foliageWorkshopper2015After grabbing breakfast at a nice, new little restaurant in Brandon, we were crossing the mountains and came upon a large hillside full of color. One little tree was in a field and it was bright red. The farm had a little store to sell maple syrup, so I knew there wouldn’t be a problem if we pulled off the road and made some shots. As I was getting out of the car, some people were coming out of the house so I let them know why two carloads of photographers were moving down the roadside. I told them about the international group that we have and they loved that we appreciated the beauty they enjoy daily and said we were welcome to wander the field and shoot whatever we like.

It is always great to run into people like that.

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Finding a face at the fair

4hPortraitThe annual Somerset County 4-H Fair is one of the few places in New Jersey where you can easily photograph farm animals, so that was what I was looking for when I went there. I was walking around the grounds and saw an older gentleman with a great face sitting on a bench. He was wearing a real cowboy hat, which you don’t see real often in New Jersey.

I told the man that I loved his hat and would like to take a picture of him. The sunlight was falling across his face but it wasn’t quite right so I moved a little to my left and he naturally moved with me and then the light was just where I wanted it. As I was shooting, I knew it would make a great black and white photo. I gave him my business card and told him to send me an email and I’d send him the photo. I didn’t hear from him.

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Taking a 10-day photo challenge

LeonardFriend Lisa Lacasse invited me to join her Queechee Area Camera Club 10-day photo challenge where you have to shoot and post a photo each day for the next 10. I’m not a big fan of shooting photos just to shoot, I like to have a purpose and a goal. While there are times I’ll go out and just enjoy the search for something different, I usually have something that I am looking for or something I want to work on.

I haven’t shot tight faces for a long time, so I decided to make faces my challenge. Old men are a subject I enjoy to photograph and chat with. While shooting at an old church with Lisa this morning, I heard a voice across the street. A man was telling us that we could come over and take pictures of the church from his yard. While I knew the photos wouldn’t be too good from there, I thought it would be fun to talk with him.

Leonard has lived in the little house for many years and grew up in the town. He told us some interesting details about the church that built in 1844. I joked with him wondering if he saw them build the church, I guess he really didn’t see the humor. Later I asked him if I could make a picture of him and he declined. I pressed him a bit knowing he was just being shy. He finally relented and I made some nice shots of him.

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Off on a photo adventure to Oregon

20131101-LEF_3834I went on another crazy photo adventure today with fellow photographer Walter Choroszewski. Walter got us a deal on a flight, and suggested we spend the weekend in Oregon. Walter hadn’t been in Oregon before and wanted to check another state off his list. He still needs Wisconsin and North Dakota and we both need Hawaii to make it 50 for each of us.

We caught a flight this morning from Newark and were in Portland before noon. We have been watching the weather forecast and it looked like today might be our only day with sunshine, a frequent Oregon problem this time of year. We went straight for the coast to the typical ocean town of Seaside and then headed south.

Cannon Beach is one of the iconic photo spots on the Oregon coast and we discovered why. There is a rock formation in the water known as the haystack and it is spectacular. The light was great, nothing like being on the west coast as the sun gets low. I think my favorite shots are of Walter as the sun comes across his face, maybe I’ll score the dust jacket of his next book.

20131101-LEF_3861

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I have a thing for faces lately

20131012-LEF_2683I don’t know, there is something about cool faces that attracts me lately. While we were out today on the Vermont Fall Foliage Photography Workshop, we stopped in the little village of Felchville for a break. Two guys were leaning on the back of a pickup truck in front of the post office/town hall. I loved the big white beard of one guy, so after making photos of both of them, I focused in on the beard. The man runs a saw mill up the road and had great eyes to go with the beard.

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Another friendly face

william-2421As my friend Lisa Lacasse and I were wandering around southern Vermont looking for great foliage, we stopped in Newfane for some lunch. We had driven a lot and were getting a bit tired, so we left the cameras in the car and headed into a country store. As soon as I walked in I saw this older gentleman with a great face sitting at some tables in front of a big picture window. The soft light flowed on him and I spun around and went back to get the cameras.

I’m not shy about talking to people, at least when I have a camera around my neck. I told the man who I am and that I like his face and the store and I’d like to take some pictures. I talked to him a little and then shot some pictures but I didn’t like the light and knew it would be better from the other side. So I went around and Lisa sat down near where I was standing and we talked with him a while. William is 93, lives down the road in Brattleboro and was a regional planner for many years. Even though he told his daughter he wouldn’t, he occasionally gets in his car and drives to Newfane where he lived with his wife before she died a few years ago.

Even though I was out looking for leaves, meeting William was the highlight of the day.

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What’s good: A beautiful wedding

Wendy and Scott wedding in the barn.

There’s nothing like a wedding in a barn and this was a good one. My brother-in-law Scott Milligan got married to Wendy Schroff in a barn where they live outside Stroudsburg, Pa. The wedding was nice and the location was really cool. It took a lot of work to make the old barn ready for a wedding and it was worth the effort. More photos on Facebook.

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What’s good: Watching president Obama go by

President Obama's motorcade rolls into an Edison, NJ sub shop.

President Obama visited a sub shop in Edison, NJ, today, which is four miles from my office. The access was the worst I’ve ever seen for a presidential visit. I’ve photographed every president since Carter and it gets harder with each one. For Carter, I heard he was going to be at an event and I just showed up and showed my press credentials and got in. He was 100 miles from my newspaper’s coverage area and the paper didn’t want any photos but I was in the area and thought I’d stop by. This time our newspaper had the only local photographer in the pool and everyone else was pushed a block away. I did live blogging of the scene and snapped some shots when the motorcade pulled up. They whisked the prez into the back of the sub shop so he wouldn’t be seen by anyone. It is too bad that people can no longer see their president except on The View.

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Alaska photo adventure slideshow


Alaska – Images by Loren Fisher

These are some of my favorite photos from my trip to Alaska.

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What’s good: Memories of a week in Alaska

Crevices form in a massive glacier near Achorage, Alaska.

It was a great week during my first trip to Alaska. Going there has been long my list of places to see for a long time. It is the 49th state I’ve visited, now I need to make my way to Hawaii.

The sun barely breaks through the clouds in Denali National Park.

Alaska is big. Real big. We drove over 2,200 miles during the week making a loop around the bottom third of the state. That’s like driving from New Jersey to Las Vegas. The borough of Mat-Su is the size of West Virginia.

Eagles fill the sky in Ninilchik, Alaska.

I photographed critters I hadn’t before: bald eagles, golden eagles, sea otters, moose, sandhill cranes, Dall sheep, coyote and even a pocupine. There was scenery that can’t be described. The mountains are majestic and the valleys wide. The forest is extensive and seems to last forever, until you get to the North Slope where trees can’t survive the hard winter.

An Alaskan carries her net to catch salmon on the Kasilof River.

We met great people, natives, converts and tourists. The locals were friendly and happy to be there. They love the outdoors and most get out and enjoy it whenever they can.

The two main buildings in Chitina, Alaska.

The towns were neat, although few and far between. I like that though. Anchorage is a real city but easy to get around. Homer is eclectic. Chitina is real, old-time Alaska.

The owner of Wal-Mikes, a store unlike any other in Trapper Creek, Alaska.

I experienced more than I could expect while in Alaska, but there is so much more to see. If I am lucky, I’ll get back there again.

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What’s good: Worth the wait at McDonald’s

Frustration shows on the guy behind me in line at McDonald's.

I was sitting in a slow line at the McDonald’s drive-thru for what seemed to be 20 minutes. Yea, before you ask, I was there for a salad. I wasn’t in a big hurry, so it didn’t really matter how long I was sitting there, but the guy behind me wasn’t taking the wait too well.

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What’s good: Hiking through the Sourland Mountains with Robin

Robin poses on a boulder in the Sourland Mountains.

We going trying to meet my old friends Lori and Art Smith in New York today, but we couldn’t make the schedules work. So instead, Robin and I went for a good hike in the Sourland Mountains, about 10 miles from our house.

Loren and Robin at the Sourland Mountains.

The Sourlands have some unusual geology, including huge boulders that aren’t found any where else around here. There is a boulder river that is really unique. I’ve been there many times but I still haven’t made a photo of the river that does it justice. We didn’t hike over to the boulder river today, just to the top of the hill where some really large rocks are exposed. We were hot and sweaty, but it was a good hike and another reminder of how I be 35 miles from NYC yet escape to a place like the Sourlands.

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What’s good: Watching a friend in the Olympics

Charles Morgan is ready for another race at the Special Olympics.

If you haven’t met Charles Morgan, you’re missing out on a great friend. Once Charlie knows you for 30 seconds, you’re his friend forever. Charles first came into my life nearly 20 years ago when he was the coverboy of the Courier News’ first Wish Book, a project I got going to raise money for less fortunate folks who have a need. My wife Robin wrote the story on Charlie. At that time he lived 20 miles away but he soon moved to Bridgewater and our phone hasn’t stopped ringing since. He has become part of the family, joining us for most holiday and birthday celebrations.

Today was the local Special Olympics and Charlie is a regular participant. He blazed down the track in his motorized wheelchair and got third in his obstacle course race. Charlie has a case full of medals from the Olympics and now he has more to add.

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