Six Pix

As I’ve mentioned a couple of times before, in articles buried in this site’s musty archives, I know virtually nothing about the technical aspects of photography nor about the cameras, lenses and associated equipment that make serious photographers drool. Nonetheless, I get a bang from taking photographs, because I like looking at things while walking around, and often feel compelled to document what I’m looking at. Most agreeably, the cameras I’ve used over the years in this pursuit have allowed me — a lazy f*cker who can’t be bothered with complicated stuff — to snap away with a minimum of effort.

First there was the Kodak Pocket Instamatic, which served me well during the pre-digital 1970s and 80s. I took a zillion pictures with it. The Pocket Instamatic was small and worked automatically, producing a nice image nearly every time. Aim and shoot was all you had to do, a pretty perfect set-up for yours truly.

A long dry spell set in for me after that era, my wife Sandy taking over the photographic duties. However, in late 2015 I obtained my first smart phone, an iPhone, and soon fell heavily for its camera. The camera was as easy as pie to use and, no need to mention, was digital. Thus, the small hassle of getting rolls of film developed (as was the case with the Instamatic) didn’t exist. Absolutely my kind of camera!

Willow Grove, Pennsylvania (March 2022)
Goods on display in the Lids store, Abington, Pennsylvania (January 2022)

That iPhone was traded in some time ago for an updated model, which I’ve put to use a whole lot. This year alone I’ve pressed its button several hundred times. A fair number of the several hundred resultant images have appeared on this wobbly publication’s pages, but the vast majority haven’t.

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania (March 2022)

And so, in honor of the fact that we currently are hauling our asses through month number six of the year, I am decorating this article with six previously unpublished pix, all from 2022, that pleased my eye recently when I scrolled through the photos residing within my phone. I’ll limit my commentary to three of them.

Mt. Airy section of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania (March 2022)

Isn’t the mural gorgeous? It was created under the auspices of Mural Arts Philadelphia, a quasi-governmental organization in Philadelphia that, since 1984, has orchestrated the painting of several thousand outdoor murals throughout that fair city. This one is in Philly’s Mt. Airy section. I took the picture in March as I was walking to a nearby tavern for a rendezvous with my great pals Jeff and Mike.

And you know what? I noticed while writing this article that the name of the mural, painted on the lower right corner, is Walking The Wissahickon. Well, as fate and/or coincidence would have it, my wife and I did exactly that — we walked The Wissahickon, aka Wissahickon Valley Park — about seven weeks after I took the mural’s portrait.

Wissahickon Valley Park, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania (April 2022)

Man, the park, which extends for more than five miles through northwest Philadelphia, a swath that includes Mt. Airy, is damn well more gorgeous than the mural, as it should be. Sandy and I were there on a lovely spring day, admiring the greenery and the robust creek (Wissahickon Creek) that flows through the park, and adroitly sidestepping the occasional piles of horse shit that bless the main trail. Not having had a true Nature experience in months, we dug the heck out of the hour and a half that we spent in what I consider to be the crown jewel of Philadelphia’s parklands.

Michener Art Museum, Doylestown, Pennsylvania (February 2022)

I’ll bring this opus to an end by talking ever so briefly about the photo of Sandy and me posing before a mirror in the Michener Art Museum, a superb institution in Doylestown, Pennsylvania. There we are, squashed within the mirror’s confines, our faces half-obscured. Yet, despite all of that, we look pretty damn good, no? Gorgeous even, no?  I think so. And those of you who don’t agree should leave the room right now!

Thanks for reading, girls and boys. Till next time!

138 thoughts on “Six Pix

  1. George June 14, 2022 / 12:13 am

    The Wissahickon (both park and mural) look beautiful, but that last pic is a work of art!

    Liked by 4 people

    • Yeah, Another Blogger June 14, 2022 / 1:51 pm

      The Michener is a surprisingly good museum. They consistently mount very good exhibits there. And the permanent collection is a winner too.

      Liked by 2 people

  2. cindy knoke June 14, 2022 / 1:24 am

    Technicians are over paid. Most artists are under paid. These captures are artistic.

    Liked by 3 people

  3. Anonymous June 14, 2022 / 5:22 am

    I agree, you both look great !
    I’m surprised at the variety of landscapes/ cityscapes in Philly, still the 4th biggest city in the US I believe.
    Alan

    Liked by 2 people

    • Yeah, Another Blogger June 14, 2022 / 1:55 pm

      Not sure if it’s the fourth, but it has a sizable population. The population, though, is greatly reduced from its peak, which was reached somewhere between the 1950s and 1970s, I think.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. swabby429 June 14, 2022 / 6:04 am

    I also cut my photographic teeth on a Kodak Pocket Instamatic. I loved its small size and convenient film cartridges. I was not a fan of Magicube flashes though. Your photos today are brilliant and, of course the last one is lovely.

    Liked by 3 people

  5. Robert Parker June 14, 2022 / 6:41 am

    I wandered around Fonthill Castle in Doylestown when I was a kid, which I remember as a dusty attic of a place, but I want to go back and visit the Michener museum, I think I’ve only read one of Michener’s books (Cheseapeake) but it was excellent. Glad you’re hitting the brix snapping clix.

    Liked by 3 people

    • Yeah, Another Blogger June 14, 2022 / 1:59 pm

      The Michener is a really good art museum. Across the street from it is the Mercer Museum, which is a mind-blowing place. It’s a repository for artifacts and implements from the 1700s and 1800s.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Ken Dowell June 14, 2022 / 7:57 am

    You could have made up a story about an expensive state of the art camera and the lens you used, shown me the same photos, and I would not have known the difference.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Yeah, Another Blogger June 14, 2022 / 2:02 pm

      Hi, Ken, and thanks. Smart phone cameras are so convenient, and they take good pictures.

      Like

  7. Laurie Graves June 14, 2022 / 8:06 am

    Wonderful collection of photos, particularly the one of you and Sandy. The quality of phone pictures is amazing. Also, that mural is stunning. I enlarged it so I could get a closer look. (Did the same with the one of you and Sandy.)

    Liked by 2 people

    • Yeah, Another Blogger June 14, 2022 / 2:04 pm

      Hi, Laurie. When I saw that mirror, there was no stopping me from taking a picture of me and Sandy reflected in it.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. JOYCE HAMILTON June 14, 2022 / 8:26 am

    Keep clicking! I always enjoy your photos!

    Liked by 2 people

  9. Denise Denton Thiery June 14, 2022 / 8:26 am

    Even without professional training, you have a gift for photography. I look forward to them. I think the secret to photography (at least one of the secrets) is an enthusiasm for the subjects you photograph, and it is clear that you have that.

    Sincerely Yours,

    Denise Thiery

    “Either write something worth reading or do something worth writing.” ~ Ben Franklin

    Liked by 3 people

  10. Lynette d'Arty-Cross June 14, 2022 / 9:27 am

    Great captures. I have been interested in photography for many years (I’m no kind of expert, though) and cell phone cameras are really good! Cheers.

    Liked by 3 people

  11. Jacqui Murray June 14, 2022 / 10:26 am

    I too traded in my Real Camera for the iPhone. I’m considering upgrading my phone primarily for the enhanced camera.

    Well, that and the satellite calls thingy I keep reading about.

    Liked by 3 people

  12. adguru101 June 14, 2022 / 10:32 am

    Great pix; loving the mural and that last shot. I fondly remember my old Polaroid camera— instant gratification! Alisa

    Liked by 3 people

    • Yeah, Another Blogger June 14, 2022 / 2:09 pm

      Greetings, Alisa. I hadn’t thought about Polaroid cameras in a long while. They used to be really popular. I’m pretty sure that they still are in production.

      Like

  13. Ally Bean June 14, 2022 / 11:07 am

    Your photo in the Michener Art Museum is perfect. Loving it– and your assertion that those who disagree can move along. Clearly they lack refinement!

    Liked by 2 people

  14. Sam Gridley June 14, 2022 / 11:34 am

    More than ever, with cameras becoming so idiot-proof, it’s the “eye” that makes a good photographer, and you have that!

    Liked by 3 people

  15. Sandy June 14, 2022 / 11:41 am

    Every time I read your post I feel like I know more about your town, not as a tourist but as a homie 🙄

    Liked by 3 people

    • Yeah, Another Blogger June 14, 2022 / 2:13 pm

      Hi, Sandy. It’s a pretty good region to live in. But that wouldn’t be the case so much if Philadelphia wasn’t part of the region.

      Liked by 1 person

  16. talebender June 14, 2022 / 12:07 pm

    Love how ‘Wissahickon’ rolls off the tongue…..like ‘Rappahannock’ or ‘Shenandoah’…..perfect river names! Nice picture of the trail, too.

    Liked by 3 people

  17. ccerebrations June 14, 2022 / 12:31 pm

    I’ve been to Philly a handful of times and will be relocating their soon. I have always loved its many murals but I never knew about the Mural Arts Project so that was very interesting to learn from your post! Also adding Wissahickon to my to do list once I get there.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Yeah, Another Blogger June 14, 2022 / 2:21 pm

      Hi there. Mural Arts Philadelphia is responsible for a very high percentage of the city’s outdoor murals. As for Wissahickon Valley Park — it’s great. The main trail through the park is known as Forbidden Drive. A good place to access the trail from is Northwestern Avenue.

      Like

  18. Cindy June 14, 2022 / 12:50 pm

    Happening upon a new mural is one of my favorite surprises in Philly. That one is a gem. So is the mirror, and those artful people in it!

    Liked by 2 people

    • Yeah, Another Blogger June 14, 2022 / 2:23 pm

      I was on my way to McMenamin’s Tavern when I stopped to photograph the mural. I had lunch that day with my friends at McMenamin’s.

      Like

  19. JT Twissel June 14, 2022 / 1:53 pm

    You caught a nice angle on that flying sculpture – it looks like the man is trying to karate kick the high rise!

    Liked by 4 people

  20. Rosaliene Bacchus June 14, 2022 / 2:10 pm

    The mural is, indeed, gorgeous. Love it! I was never good at taking photographs growing up, so I’ve not yet gotten into the habit of using the camera of my iPhone.

    Liked by 3 people

  21. Helene Brennan June 14, 2022 / 2:31 pm

    Yeah! That mural really is gorgeous, and I think that pic of the 2 of you in the mirror with that lovely frame was very clever.

    Liked by 3 people

  22. cjdabbles June 14, 2022 / 3:14 pm

    A trees shadow in one’s view as a shadow! It caught me. What would it be without a photo to jiggle those memories! Would sure love to visit Philly!!!

    Liked by 3 people

    • Yeah, Another Blogger June 14, 2022 / 4:46 pm

      Thanks for visiting. I’ve lived in or near Philadelphia for most of my adult life. I’m in the suburbs now, but I go to Philly two, three or more times each month.

      Like

  23. sniderjerry June 14, 2022 / 8:21 pm

    Remember Minnie Pearl? When she got her pictures back from the drug store she said,”These pictures don’t do me justice.” The man behind the counter said, “You don’t need justice, you need mercy.” Rim Shot! Great pictures- you look like you’re having a good time. All the best. Jerry

    Liked by 3 people

    • Yeah, Another Blogger June 14, 2022 / 10:03 pm

      You know, that sounds like a joke that Rodney Dangerfield would have told too. Take care, Jerry. See ya.

      Like

  24. Helen Devries June 14, 2022 / 9:56 pm

    Never mind the camera….without ‘the eye’ it is nothing nomatter how sophisticated….and you the eye.

    Liked by 3 people

  25. johnlmalone June 14, 2022 / 11:41 pm

    thanks for the entertaining post and photos, Neil; love the mural too and the comment about the horse manure in the park: it is good that our animals, our beasts of burden, us the trails as well 🙂

    Liked by 3 people

  26. snakesinthegrass2014 June 15, 2022 / 1:26 pm

    Indeed gorgeous! I must have had at least five of those Instamatics. I loved the cameras but hated the flash bulbs for reasons I don’t recall. Remember the Magicube? – Marty

    Liked by 3 people

  27. mjcd2017 June 15, 2022 / 3:09 pm

    I too remember those days … first using my father’s camera, then getting my first automatic with zoom. Would you have imagined 20 years ago that we’d be snapping pics, film mini movies and basically can’t live without our smart phones? I wish I’d already had today’s iPhone many many years ago to capture the voices and movements of my long deceased parents … and other loved ones

    Liked by 3 people

  28. andrewcferguson June 15, 2022 / 5:14 pm

    Oh, there’s a phone function comes with these mobile cameras? I did wonder why it kept beeping a flashing messages at me when I was trying to take another shot….

    Liked by 3 people

  29. Michael Graeme June 16, 2022 / 8:00 am

    Those iPhone cameras are good. I don’t know how they do it.

    Liked by 3 people

    • Yeah, Another Blogger June 16, 2022 / 3:18 pm

      Hi. I took that Philly photo a couple of months ago while walking beside the Schuylkill River. I’m not sure what the statue represents, but it looks good in that setting.

      Liked by 1 person

  30. alisendopf June 16, 2022 / 10:10 am

    “we currently are hauling our asses through month number six” – you always make me laugh! What a turn of phrase.

    I love how coincidences work. Just think – without those photos, would you have even found that connection between picture and place? I think not. All hail the lazy photographer who knows the power of documentation.

    Liked by 3 people

    • Yeah, Another Blogger June 16, 2022 / 3:20 pm

      Hi. I wouldn’t have foiund the connection, because I hadn’t realized what the mural represents. Luckily, while writing the story, I looked at the mural photo closely and saw the name on the bottom right corner of the mural.

      Liked by 1 person

  31. Fictionophile June 16, 2022 / 3:00 pm

    Beautiful mural – beautiful park. You should be on the Philadelphia tourist board Neil.

    Liked by 3 people

    • Yeah, Another Blogger June 16, 2022 / 4:16 pm

      Hi, Lynne. Yeah, I like Philadelphia a lot. I lived there for many years. I’m in the burbs now, but still visit the city regularly.

      Liked by 1 person

  32. Pazlo June 16, 2022 / 6:08 pm

    More praise for cell phone cameras. Amazing technology for photos, panoramas and video.
    Photography is not about the camera, though. It’s about the photographer. The subjects chosen and the way they are captured or represented form a unique perspective.
    Thanks for sharing many great photos on your blog, Neil.
    I feel as if I have strolled these neighborhoods, shopped the mall, and walked the parks of Philadelphia without ever leaving home.

    Paz

    Liked by 2 people

  33. Darhlene June 16, 2022 / 9:45 pm

    I live in an area that is devoid of public murals. It’s so sad. Murals, or lack thereof, can speak volumes for the cultural identity of a community. Love your photos.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Yeah, Another Blogger June 16, 2022 / 11:41 pm

      There are SO many outdoor murals in Philly, it’s pretty amazing. I suppose that Philadelphia is one of the mural capitals of the world.

      Like

  34. Crystal Byers June 17, 2022 / 9:38 am

    I think it’s time to go on a good mural hunt of my own, and your walk-around posts always make me think I should really go to Philly. My one and only trip 1976…hopefully again one day.

    Liked by 3 people

  35. sloppy buddhist June 17, 2022 / 10:44 am

    love these Neil…has a Lee Friedlander feeling to them…happy weekending sending you joy ~ hedy

    Liked by 3 people

  36. D. Wallace Peach June 17, 2022 / 1:22 pm

    I don’t have cell service where I live, Neil, so unless I’m traveling, my phone is just a camera. And like you, I love it. Those old instamatics? I remember getting a roll of film developed (at quite a cost) and having two good photos, if that. Have a wonderful weekend and Happy Snapping!

    Liked by 2 people

    • Yeah, Another Blogger June 17, 2022 / 4:30 pm

      Hi, Diana. I’ve got a ton of Instamatic photos stashed away in boxes. I haven’t looked at them in years. I should!

      Liked by 1 person

      • D. Wallace Peach June 17, 2022 / 5:41 pm

        I know the feeling. I have to go through 80 photo albums belonging to my parents and grandparents. It’s so much easier to sort and categorize digital photos.

        Liked by 2 people

  37. selizabryangmailcom June 17, 2022 / 1:23 pm

    I can’t even imagine the treasure trove of pics you have that we haven’t seen.
    These are all really nice.
    I agree with you about “some” technology, like phone cameras, being fantastic. I complain about being a Luddite all the time, but if I had to go back to typing stories on manual typewriters instead of a Word doc…. that would be bad day, lol !!

    Liked by 4 people

    • Yeah, Another Blogger June 17, 2022 / 4:28 pm

      Hi. Right — manual typewriters were a giant pain compared to typing on a computer. We had to use white-out when we made mistakes, we had to change ribbons, etc.

      Liked by 1 person

  38. annieasksyou June 17, 2022 / 5:34 pm

    Super pix, Neil. Yeah, the iPhone camera’s great, but the artist makes them all pop. (My iPhone photos do not dazzle…)

    The one of Sandy and you conjures a philosophical question that is so deep I can’t even think of it.:)

    On a separate topic, do you know that Borgen has started up again? Last season, unfortunately, but even more tension.

    Liked by 3 people

    • Yeah, Another Blogger June 17, 2022 / 8:34 pm

      Hi, Annie. You know, my wife and I are watching Borgen’s new season. Tonight we’ll watch episode number four. Have you seen all of the new episodes?

      Like

  39. Alyson June 17, 2022 / 6:28 pm

    Such an easy and portable means of capturing things that pique your interest when out and about. I’m also a fan of the iPhone camera but dread the day I’m going to have to thin the pictures down to save for posterity- they build up in number fast!

    Liked by 3 people

  40. viewfromoverthehill June 17, 2022 / 6:44 pm

    Wow, your blog is famous. What a great response you get to your posts. I’m convinced everyone, including me, love what you write AND the beautiful photos you share. My favourite this time? The Mural. Gorgeous. Stay well, Muriel

    Liked by 3 people

    • Yeah, Another Blogger June 17, 2022 / 10:37 pm

      Hi, and thanks for the thumbs-up. Philadelphia has loads and loads of murals. I’ve meant to do a story devoted to some of them. One of these days I will. Have a great weekend.

      Like

    • Yeah, Another Blogger June 17, 2022 / 10:42 pm

      Hi, and thanks. I’d guess that smart phone photography is one of the most popular hobbies. It’s kind of addictive.

      Like

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