Tag Archives: waterfront

Illuminated!

So I went to Canalside tonight to see the grain elevator illuminated and it did not disappoint. It was designed by Ambiances Design and will be lit 365 evenings a year starting tonight. The scenes on the elevator changed, representing the seasons of Western New York, and I have to say it was pretty spectacular. I also have to add how blown away I was by the sheer volume of people on the waterfront on this unseasonably warm November evening. The work and progress that has been done and continues to be done there is truly impressive. I’ve ridden my bike in that area for many years, and for many years it was a desolate industrial wasteland (I would be nervous being by myself even in the day time), but now it has been transformed into an all ages family-friendly waterfront. And this is just another example. Anyhow, click any photo for a slightly larger view.


Urban Simplicity.

Illuminated!

So I went to Canalside tonight to see on of Buffalo’s iconic grain elevator illuminated and it did not disappoint. It was designed by Ambiances Design and will be lit 365 evenings a year starting tonight. The scenes on the elevator changed, representing the seasons of Western New York, and I have to say it was pretty spectacular. I also have to add how blown away I was by the sheer volume of people on the waterfront on this unseasonably warm November evening. The work and progress that has been done and continues to be done there is truly impressive. I’ve ridden my bike in that area for many years, and for many years it was a desolate industrial wasteland (I would be nervous being by myself even in the day time), but now it has been transformed into an all ages family-friendly waterfront. And this is just another example. Anyhow, click any photo for a slightly larger view.


Urban Simplicity.

Chasing Light…

So as many of you know I have been voluntarily car-free for a few years now. It does have it’s hardships now and again (I’d be fibbing if I said otherwise) but the good far outweighs the negative (as is with most things in life). This said, one of the things I love about being on a bike is seeing all that is around me and in all weather conditions. And two of my favorite times to shoot photos are dawn and dusk. I am up at dawn a few times a week for work but usually do not have time to take photos, thus most of them are shot at dusk. The French have a phrase for these times of day…l’heure bleue (the blue hour) because of the distinctive blue hue the sky often takes and the way colors are enhanced. A camera has three ways in which one can manipulate how much light enters it and for how long, this is called the “exposure triangle.” There is also, of course, post-upload software to help enhance photos. But with the camera itself, and the software, nothing can compare to what natural light offers to a photo. And with this in mind–when I have the intention of going out to take photos in the evening–I usually time it…I check the sunset time and head out with enough time to set up my camera and have a beer or glass of wine. The thing is I often under-shoot the time, meaning I cut myself short and have to hurry. Sometimes I think I must look like a crazy person; the waterfront is about 2 or 3 miles from my house and I can only imagine the sight of me…a middle aged guy on a bike pedaling as fast as he can while looking at the sky. The perfect light only lasts minutes, sometimes seconds; one minute can drastically change a photo’s look. This is why I think of it as “chasing light.”

Urban Simplicity.

Chasing Light…

So as many of you know I have been voluntarily car-free for a few years now. It does have it’s hardships now and again (I’d be fibbing if I said otherwise) but the good far outweighs the negative (as is with most things in life). This said, one of the things I love about being on a bike is seeing all that is around me and in all weather conditions. And two of my favorite times to shoot photos are dawn and dusk. I am up at dawn a few times a week for work but usually do not have time to take photos, thus most of them are shot at dusk. The French have a phrase for these times of day…l’heure bleue (the blue hour) because of the distinctive blue hue the sky often takes and the way colors are enhanced. A camera has three ways in which one can manipulate how much light enters it and for how long, this is called the “exposure triangle.” There is also, of course, post-upload software to help enhance photos. But with the camera itself, and the software, nothing can compare to what natural light offers to a photo. And with this in mind–when I have the intention of going out to take photos in the evening–I usually time it…I check the sunset time and head out with enough time to set up my camera and have a beer or glass of wine. The thing is I often under-shoot the time, meaning I cut myself short and have to hurry. Sometimes I think I must look like a crazy person; the waterfront is about 2 or 3 miles from my house and I can only imagine the sight of me…a middle aged guy on a bike pedaling as fast as he can while looking at the sky. The perfect light only lasts minutes, sometimes seconds; one minute can drastically change a photo’s look. This is why I think of it as “chasing light.”

Urban Simplicity.

On the waterfront (bis)…

Okay. So sorry about the multiple pictures of Buffalo’s waterfront. I have posted from this same vantage point on numerous times prior. But I just find it so fascinating. Every time I go there for a couple beers (there’s a beautiful outdoor bar) and to take photos I see something different even if looking at the same scene as before. I shot these a couple evenings ago. I really like them all but the most dramatic, I think, is the one pictured above. I saw this when I first arrived…this crazy turbulent low-lying cloud just sort of rolling across the lake and above us. And rolling is a good description because I later found that it is actually called a “roll cloud” (or Arcus cloud). Shortly thereafter there was lightening and rain; this cloud was a sort of precursor. Anyhow, and I apologize in advance, but there will likely be more waterfront photos before the summer is finished…

Urban Simplicity.

On the waterfront (bis)…

Okay. So sorry about the multiple pictures of Buffalo’s waterfront. I have posted from this same vantage point on numerous times prior. But I just find it so fascinating. Every time I go there for a couple beers (there’s a beautiful outdoor bar) and to take photos I see something different even if looking at the same scene as before. I shot these a couple evenings ago. I really like them all but the most dramatic, I think, is the one pictured above. I saw this when I first arrived…this crazy turbulent low-lying cloud just sort of rolling across the lake and above us. And rolling is a good description because I later found that it is actually called a “roll cloud” (or Arcus cloud). Shortly thereafter there was lightening and rain; this cloud was a sort of precursor. Anyhow, and I apologize in advance, but there will likely be more waterfront photos before the summer is finished…

Urban Simplicity.

On the waterfront (bis)…photos and words

So a couple things first. These photos were taken over a two day period. The night shots were taken on one evening, and the daytime shots were taken on another (today). And they are in no particular order. As usual, on a day off when the weather is nice (or even if it is not nice) I was drawn to Buffalo’s waterfront, specifically the Canalside area the last few days. The reason I highlight this is that this area has gone through such a resurgence it is almost unbelievable. Just a few years ago this was like an industrial and desolate wasteland, and now it is (and quite literally was today) a carnival. A little more than ten years ago I remember riding my bike down to this area and being somewhat concerned for my safety in broad daylight. I said a few sentences ago that the photos were in no particular order but that is only partly true. I purposely chose the above photo to be first as a juxtaposition…a tilt-a-whirl in the spot that was once a destitute area. And just below is pictured the new bicycle and pedestrian water taxi, which takes one to the Outer Harbor and Times Nature Preserve. For one dollar and a 10 minute ride your distance is shortened by 6 or 8 miles. This is where the picture of the deer is from…beautiful and totally wild deer 5 minutes from downtown. There’s also a photo of our lighthouse (from both sides of the river) which was built in 1833, the SS Littlerock, and or course the newest public art in that area; Plensa’s Silent Poets. Anyhow, I feel truly blessed to have this beautiful public space a mere 10 or 15 minute bike ride from my front door. 

Urban Simplicity.

The sun also sets…

These photos were taken over the course of two days. And they are from one of my favorite spots…the beautiful Buffalo waterfront. The weather has been so incredibly nice this past week, and I have been working way too much, so whenever I’ve had the chance I have been heading to the water. I bring my camera and sometimes a journal or a book…and simply decompress. And it doesn’t hurt that there’s an outdoor bar with some of my favorite local beers on tap 🙂  Anyhow, I’ve taken a bunch of photos of the harbor this past week and these are a few of my favorites.

Urban Simplicity.

On the waterfront…

Today I went down to Buffalo’s Outer Harbor in search of the elusive snowy owl that has taken up home in Western New York. And no, I did not ride my bike the six miles each way in these frigid temperatures, I used Buffalo Car Share. To be honest, I actually contemplated it but am glad I did not…the high today was like 15F and when I got to the shore of the lake the wind was so strong that I had to lean into it and brace myself to take a photo…my hands were frozen (as I took my leather mitts off to adjust and snap the camera) and I had to remember to hold the lens cap (which is attached to the camera by a string) or the wind would whip it around and it would smack me in the side of the head. And I purposely went around dusk because this is when not only owls but other animals are said to hunt, but also so I could capture the natural blue hue of a winter’s cold sunset…but the temperature was dropping. Thus said, I have to admit that it was nice to find refuge in the warmth of a car in between photos. But alas, I did not see a snowy owl…or a fox, or a coyote, or a deer, or a falcon, or an eagle (all of which live in the area). In fact, the only “animals” I did see were other photographers in search of snowy owls. But, despite the wind burning and bone chilling cold, I really enjoyed myself and was in awe of the power of Mother Nature, and was (and still am) thankful to live in proximity to such an incredible natural resource (it’s a 20 minute bike ride in nicer weather). Anyhow, click any photo for a slightly larger view.


Urban Simplicity.

A few things I saw while riding my bike this evening…

It was chilly and blustery this evening. Really blustery. I had gotten out of work early and then abruptly invited to an impromptu bachelorette party (yup) and when it ended just as quickly as it began I found myself a few beers in and it was only 5pm. I couldn’t just go home, I thought. So despite the chill and the wind I packed up my camera gear and rode down to Canalside.With the summer season being over it was essentially empty, and it was truly beautiful. Anyhow, I took a bunch of photos at dusk and and then early dark. Theses are a few of my favorites. Click any for a somewhat larger view.

Water and Light…

As I type these words it is a rainy and blustery day outside. But a mere two days ago–when these photos were taken it was more like a late summer evening. I had ridden my bike down to the waterfront to capture the sunset and have a couple beers, and as the sun set over Canada–like the enormous fireball in the sky that it is–the light kept changing, and it was incredible. I snapped a bunch of photos, but these are a few of my favorites. Click any for a somewhat larger view.

Urban Simplicity.

L’heure bleue et nuit…

Okay. So you may be getting tired of seeing photos of Buffalo’s waterfront. Sorry. But I have been so drawn to it this summer. I find it relaxing. Yesterday after a very crazy-busy and super hot-and-humid day of running a round a kitchen and facing a stove, I wanted nothing more than to have a cold beer and feel the breeze off the lake. So, yup, that’s just what I did. And if you’ve visited this site before then you know that my favorite time of day to take photos is at dusk, or what is often called “the blue hour” (l’heure bleue)…it’s that incredibly beautiful time of day–dusk and dawn–when everything takes on a blue hue. It only lasts about a half hour or so before the day turns into night and it is gone. 

From WikipediaDuring the blue hour, red light passes straight into space while blue light is scattered in the atmosphere and therefore reaches the earth’s surface. Because of the quality of the light, this period is treasured by artists.

Indeed, some devote entire websites on taking photos during this time. Anyhow, I’ll stop blathering on about it, but it really is a magical time. The above and below photo are of Buffalo Harbor, and the bottom photo–after night had fallen and I was on my way home–is an image of Buffalo Navel Park. Click any for a slightly larger view.

Urban Simplicity.

On the Waterfront…a few photos and a few words

So in a few days it will be September already. Where has the summer gone? Time goes so very quickly doesn’t it? And with this thought in mind (and the thought that it is predicted that we will receive an early visit from the infamous polar vortex this year) I headed to one of Buffalo’s beautiful waterfronts last evening (even though I didn’t entirely feel like it…though I’m glad I did). I really and consciously wanted to take in a summer evening–to remember it–for three months from now when it will be frigid. There’s a really nice outdoor bar at the Buffalo waterfront so I grabbed a beer and waited for the sun to set. And the Yuba works great as a shelf for food, beer, and other things (see below). Anyhow, it really was a nice evening…feeling the breeze come off the lake while watching the sailboats come in for the evening. I snapped more than four dozen photos and here are a few of my favorites. Click any for a larger view.

Urban Simplicity.