"If you know you are going to fail, then fail gloriously."
Isn't Cate Blanchett Lovely?
Sigh. It's not like Woody Allen is the first celebrity I have ever photographed, but there I was, dumbstruck like Lucy Ricardo meeting Charles Boyer. Like Lucy Ricardo meeting John Wayne. Like Lucy Ricardo meeting William Holden. Like Lucy Ricardo... well... you get the picture! Pun intended! It wouldn't have mattered how many filming locations I had tracked him down at, I was hopelessly dumbstruck by Woody Allen, and that was where my literal focus was. It's like my brain simply didn't have enough power to grasp two stars at the same time. And let's face it, Cate Blanchett is as stunning as they come. It might have been different if I had made it to the filming off Union Square at Shreve & Company. She was present, and from the pictures I have seen, amazingly lovely, plus there was a lot longer opportunity to focus on the total picture.
While in Union Square, they were outside for most of the day, but the particular days filming I made it to involved the actors doing scenes inside buildings. The only opportunities that presented themselves for capturing a photo were in the comings and goings. The amateur shutterbug such as myself, had to be ready at the shutter, and hope for the best. Hey, at least I have a pretty good shot of her profile here, but she is such a lovely lady, I wish I had done better. It's a good set of photos to consider the next time a celebrity sighting presents itself. Focus. Focus. Focus. Again... pun intended! LOL. In the meantime, I can add Cate Blanchett to my file of celebrity photography opportunities. I have learned something from each celebrity in my file, and anytime you can learn from your photography it's a good thing... right?
"If I had my way, if I was lucky enough, if I could be on the brink my entire life... that great sense of expectation and excitement without disappointment... that would be the perfect state."
"There have been times I have thought some dreams should never be dreamt, but I would hate a world where that was true."
~Daniel Amory, Minor Snobs
Alan and I tried to find Woody Allen again on Wednesday, but alas he wasn't at his last location at Claremont and Ulloa, and there wasn't any mention of his moving to a different neighborhood on any social media, so unless he turns up somewhere today, I think I have seen him for the last time. Well, in San Francisco anyway. I suppose I could actually make it to New York one day, that is still my number one daydream, and if it does come true I would see him in person again, but there are other New York moments that could come true as well.
You never know what funny little twists and turns life has in store. Good and bad. While I am far from feeling distraught about turning 50 this year, I am thankful for my new found appreciation of life. I am not afraid to get into that small plane this year. I am equally confident about the whale watching trip we have also booked. Just a few years ago I probably wouldn't have considered doing either of those things, but sitting here, considering both activities, the very idea of either fills me with nothing but eager anticipation and dare I say... happiness!
Life, and GOD both have a sense of humor!
After I realized that I wasn't going to find Woody, I decided to go up to Twin Peaks to do a new set of daytime photos of the amazing view of San Francisco. I got what I needed, but I need to do a set of sunset and evening photos from there as well. I am crazy in love with San Francisco, and the Bay Area in general. And with so much to inspire me, I think this year might bring my best photography yet! At least I hope so. That is the goal anyway. I am getting my groove back I think, and I am so thankful for that! Thanks for being patient with me my friend JR, and my regular lurkers, I know you are out there, and it feels good to know I am not alone. Your encouragement has meant so much to me!
:) = Happiness
Oh, and here is one more picture from August 28th. It seems he and I made inadvertent eye contact in a second photo! Cool. Weird. But very cool!
:)= Happiness Again!
"Imagine a delicious glass of summer iced tea.
Take a long cool sip. Listen to the ice crackle and clink.
Is the glass full or part empty?
Take another sip.
~Vera Nazarian, The Perpetual Calendar of Inspiration
"The strangest experiences in life are apt to lose effect if dwelt upon long enough."
~A. M. Burrage
Don't you just love looking into the eyes of big cities? If eyes are the windows to the soul, then wouldn't windows be the eyes of a city... right?
I love looking at eyes, and windows. You see the most wonderful, unusual things. One day, someone looks at an object and that object resonates with them in some way. Soon, that someone decides to place the object in a window, facing out into the world, and those who see it may feel the exact same emotion or think the exact same thought, and suddenly it is shared with the world. Good, bad or otherwise... there it is.
So, what do you think the owner of that handsome head was thinking?
"We are all interested in the future, for that is where you and I are going to spend the rest of our lives."
After a couple weeks of doing errands, and chores, and all the things a responsible person does, it was finally time yesterday to look for Woody Allen again. As you know, he has been filming his latest movie in the city throughout the whole month of August, and the whole city has been on extreme Woody Watch. I wish I could have followed him from location shoot to location shoot, but I couldn't. It would have been fun to have had a picture from each place, but it's okay, I have some photos from the location on 20th and Lexington, and now from the corner of Claremont and Ulloa, which is located in the West Portal neighborhood of San Francisco.
The day began with Alan and I making the trek across the bay, by way of the San Mateo bridge. The day before I had done some looking online, and found out Woody had been filming in the Upper Haight. So, heading toward Haight/Ashbury seemed like out best bet in finding him. Once we got there, it didn't take long to figure out that he had more than likely got what he needed there on Monday, and moved onto to a new location. I was a little disappointed, I have been having so much fun watching the process of creating a new film, but the upside is that along with all the excitement of maybe figuring out where he is filming next, has been the joy of discovering new places to eat, shop, and just generally enjoy ourselves.
As we drove out of the Haight, and back through Golden Gate Park, we decided to stop for lunch at a little Chinese restaurant we discovered when we were traveling about the location on Geary and 24th, the week before. At that time we had apparently missed his by just an hour or so, but it wasn't for nothing, we now have about 4 places in that area to check out for a future date. Yesterday, we decided to cross one place off our list of "Must Trys" by grabbing our lunch at a little place called "Hunan Cafe #2. It is a small neighborhood restaurant, a mom and pop place, and I have to say, the food there is FABULOUS! Truly a gem. A delightful San Francisco secret! We will definitely be eating there again soon. It is conveniently located just off the park, and the beach. YUM!
After lunch I decide to check on the Internet, and Twitter to see if I could locate Woody, and low and behold, I did spot a blip about him being at the corner of Claremont and Ulloa. Off we went. As we arrived, it seemed like we were going to need a bit of luck in finding him. As we drove into the neighborhood, we were one the lookout for the Studio Services trucks. Suddenly we spotted 3 large trailers in a church parking lot. Okay, the game was afoot! We circled the block a couple of times when we spotted a young, well dressed man, walking alone down the hill in front of us, with a camera in his hand! Great! Our first major clue! LOL.
We continued up the hill, and around a corner onto West Portal drive and then onto Ulloa, and there on the left was Woody Allen's town car! That meant he was definitely there! Good. We had the right location, now to find a parking place. We couldn't find a place along Ulloa, so we circled the corner. As we turned onto Ulloa once again, things looked a tad different. What was different? Well, there on my right, was Woody Allen stepping out of the place he ate lunch, Squat and Gobble. Weird, right? There I was, not 10 feet away, and where was my camera? Why all safe, sound and packed into the camera bag!
You can imagine how I felt when I realized I had just missed the shot of the year! When I saw his town car, why didn't I get my camera ready just in case he was out and about? LOL. And I call myself a photographer! What a rookie mistake!Oh well, I am not really complaining, once we found a place to park, and walked to the corner, I was able to get a lot of photos. And among the 100 or so pictures I had the thrill of taking one picture in particular... the one where he and I made inadvertent eye contact! I have to say, and don't laugh, I may never wash my eyes again! It was a good day and I am a happy girl, because this has been the August of a lifetime! It was the August of Woody Allen!
Here, see for yourself...
I am exhusted! But it's okay... Woody Allen and I made eye contact!
I got a number of other shots while I was there yesterday, and as with the neighbored on Lexington and 20th, there was plenty of things to be seen and photographed!
It was a good day! Woody, if I don't see you again before you leave San Francisco, THANK YOU!
"I loved autumn, the one season of the year that god seemed to have put there just for the beauty of it."
~John Greenlead Whittier
Look what I saw today. I love it when one season get's so excited for it's day in the sen, that it jump starts things a little early. I do believe California will be putting on quite a show this year! On my list for autumn photography is Plumas, Napa, and Sonoma Counties. Plumas for the Dogwood, Big Leaf Maple and Aspens. Sonoma and Napa for the color of the vineyards and autumn fruits and vegetables. I am so excited, I can almost taste the ripe, juicy delicious pears and apples. Ahhhh! But don't think I have forgotten the coast for some Brussel's Sprouts. A little bacon, a little onion and garlic, some butter and a fine dusting of sea salt. Life Is Good!
I am an easy girl to please.
Today's Link comes to us by way of our friend JR. If you haven't seen his marvelous photography, go check out his photo blog. He is an awesome photographer, and I learn a lot from him! :)
"San Francisco itself is art, above all literary art. Every hill a novel. Every home a poem, ever dweller within immortal. That is the whole truth."
I am so happy, almost giddy with anticipation. I have had a blast the last couple weeks in San Francisco, while following Woody Allen around the city, I have discovered new public art. New restaurants, new parks, new neighborhoods, new little moments here and there that will keep me smiling even on my last day on Earth. I had no idea that following my favorite funny man around my lovely San Francisco would be so inspiring. The conversations I have overheard in the neighborhoods of excited residents and merchants has been awe inspiring. I loved talking to the film students on 20th street about why Woody Allen is an idol to them. It was so much fun watching the two guys in front of the little market on 24th street taking each others photo as they posed next to an outdoor display of nectarines, that just happened to be where Woody was standing next to a couple hours earlier. I missed him there and at a couple other locations, but I also found a wealth of interesting subjects to photograph, including the market itself. And this week, I get to start all over again.
It's no secret how much I love San Francisco. And it's no secret how much I adore Woody Allen and his body of work. How about that, two great loves in the same place! Fun. Inspiration. Anticipation. Love. Appreciation. Drive. Determination. Happiness.
And the very best part of all? Sharing the adventure with Alan!
How lucky can one girl get?
Now, be sure to drop by my friend JR's blog and see what he is up to today! He's awesome!
"It occurred to me that if I were a ghost, this ambiance was what I'd miss most; the ordinary, day to day bustle of the living. Ghosts long, I'm sure, for the stupidest, most unremarkable things."
~Banana Yosimoto, The Lake
I love the unremarkable. I like shadows, and soft light. I love average faces, because they seem to be more honest than ones of full beauty or handsomeness. It's not the fault of the beautiful or handsome, it's just that I think after a while they develop a deep need to stay perfect, instead of allowing soft forming lines from laughter, or consideration tell the tale of a season in a lifetime.
The other day I came across this photograph, buried deep in a forgotten archive. I captured the ghost, on a late October evening, in the southern Sierra in 2004. The day had been unseasonably warm, and the luminance of the day was quietly slipping away, allowing the inevitable darkness to shroud the horizon, but it was the time of day that the unremarkable sometimes becomes the fantastic by way of shadows formed by the light of a setting simple autumn sun.
In a few moments, the spirit of the treeline of common trees in the Sierra would be gone, and the whole scene would be replaced by a common darkness. It felt a little like I was seeing watching a ghost dancing toward tomorrow. An unremarkable, fleeting, restless, illumination of energy that can't, and won't, go on forever no matter how much we wish it would, pray it would, or dream it should.What you are seeing in this photo, is the ghost of an unremarkable day, still haunting my imagination.
"I don't suppose you have to believe in ghosts to know that we are all haunted, all of us, by things we can see and feel and guess at, and many more things we can't."