Wednesday, April 27, 2011

"Ten Practice Courts, Pasadena High School" (2011)

Five practice tennis courts face east and another five face west.  On occasion, a ball clears the top of an east-facing court and ends up on the west-facing side.  Each wall had survived taggers and hundreds of thousands of hits from students, weekend athletes and serious ballers.  Pasadena High School opens its athletic facilities to the community every weekend and is a place where neighbors meet.  Each photograph has a shadow that reveals the court's orientation relative to the afternoon Saturday sun.

The Photographic Moment

For years, I've been carrying a camera in my car and this shot was taken while waiting for the light to get on the 210 Freeway on Day Creek Blvd.  The late winter afternoon sun filled the opening between the eastbound and westbound lanes and as I turned this runner was crossing my field of view.

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Hammer Time

After six 1-hr rides in 3 weeks on the Bianchi cruiser bike, I've decided to get serious and get myself new cycling shoes (Pearl Izumi) and new gloves from REI in Rancho.  Today, I went up Day Creek Blvd twice on my road bike and actually felt good.  I miss the feeling of going uphill and reaching the top -- like stopping after hitting my head with a hammer.  I vividly remember this guy from the Montrose ride, Arsenio.  He only rode an hour every day and does the 65 mile club ride every Saturday and somehow he stays in racing condition.  Not that I even remotely consider bike racing again but it just feels good to be in shape and go up the hills fast.  Nonetheless, I have an hour to ride everyday (given work and home constraints) but I am definitely on the "Arsenio Program" -- hammer hard for an hour to get in fast and strong.  I'm not quite there yet but by the start of summer, I'll probably be shaving my legs again.

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Art For The Masses

A good 500 years after the renaissance, this iconic image still pervades our daily consciousness and will probably continue to do so for another 500 years.  I was extremely lucky to have found my one and only version of Leonardo's Mona Lisa in an 18"x24" version from a thrift shop in Upland, California yesterday.  As soon as I saw it, I know paying $30 for it was definitely worth every penny.  Here's why. This acrylic version is done using the traditional paint-by-numbers technique from a kit available at any crafts store by a person of indeterminate age.  While I have never done a single paint-by-number piece, I believe that with patience, a bit of a steady hand and a drive to make art is all one needs to accomplish something like this.  The merging of this iconic image with a modern (ok, 50s maybe) technique is a truly art for the masses.  I knew I was destined to get this piece because as I was waiting in line, getting ready to pay, I looked outside and just across the street, painted on the building (that housed a custom framing store) is another image of the Mona Lisa.