The Louvre, Paris – Just a Courtyard

The Louvre Museum was one of the many highlights of our vacation to France back a few years ago. Here, simply, is a view of one courtyard, a small, un-pretensious treaure in itself, and only a few steps away from the “Mona Lisa” and so many other trully celebrated works of art.

(Nikon D80 – f/11 1/500 sec, 18mm, handheld on the go!)

As usual, click on the image for a closer look, and thanks for viewing. Comments are always welcome. M 🙂

 

A Total Eclipse Family Event – 8/21/17

My wife and I (and Sandy Paws, the dog,) journeyed about 750 miles (1200 km) from New Jersey to see and photograph the Total Solar Eclipse last week, meeting up with most of our immediate family for an unforgettable, awesome event which none of us, including the youngest, will ever forget.

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Through a very dense solar filter, these first two images show the moon in silhouette, moving slowly from upper right to lower left across the sun. Click on to see the sunspots near the center, and lower left limb.

Totality descended rapidly in the final seconds… exposing this unreal, and unforgetable sight, joined by gasps and “Oh my God, it’s beautiful (s)..” Fontana Village is a resort in western North Carolina, today within the “path of totality,” a ~70 mile (113 km) shadow area – this time moving west to east across the United States. Above,  the sun’s outer corona is captured.
Above: Totally eclipsed over two minutes, the sun just ….reappears. This shorter exposure shows the inner corona and solar flares (reddish bursts to the right and lower right of the sun,) often referred to as the ‘Diamond Ring effect.”
As the moon continues along, gradually exposing more of the sun… the strong filters and solar glasses are again required, as the landscape moves from deep twilight to full daylight in a little over an hour.

Besides finding it hard to concentrate on the quickly changing demands of eclipse photography, the totality is unlike anything you could ever experience. Spontaneous applause and cheers welled up from the field in a unified expression of being witness to something extraordinary.

Accompanied in the field by our children, their children; my brother and sister-in-law, and Sandy Paws, we appreiciated such a beautiful day for an exceptional event just south of the Great Smoky Mountains.

As usual, click on the images for a closer look, and thanks for viewing. Comments are always welcome. M 🙂

Wildflower – 7/20/17

Late afternoon on the 48th anniversary of the first manned lunar landing, peace and tranquility abound along the local Rail Trail in Forked River, N.J.

 “Tranquility Base here… the Eagle has landed!”

As usual, click on the image for a closer look, find some spider webs, and ponder that this was taken with an i-phone! Thanks for viewing. Comments are always welcome. M 🙂

 

America’s Cup 2017 – How The Wealthy Play

Coinciding with our vacation to Bermuda last week, was the America’s Cup Yacht Preliminaries.

As seen from the bow of our cruise ship, Norwegian Breakaway, the America’s Cup Village is seen just behind Celebrity Summit, in Bermuda’s Great Sound.
Over the preceding months and many locations, preliminary races determined the ultimate “challenger” to the current “defender” (USA’s “Oracle.”) Above,  New Zealand’s “Emirates” (in contest with Great Britain’s “Land Rover”) takes the lead with Gibbs Hill Lighthouse in the background, and has now earned that challenger privilege.
The boats have evolved over 147 years, from more conventional sailing yachts, to highly refined and sophisticated racing platforms, now utilizing hydrofoils to significantly reduce drag and increase speed.
Rules prohibit any energy sources other than the sea, air and human input. The helmsman, (see image above) who is ultimately responsible for navigation and articulation of control surfaces under race conditions, must continuously evaluate and decide when and where to guide the boat and how to do it. His hands are on a multi-remote laced steering wheel. Also, as the boat’s direction and roll-attitude changes, the entire crew will run across to the opposite (upper) pontoon to man duplicate stations.  Great theater! 
Just after winning this heat over Land Rover, Emirates is seen here coming down off the foils. The boats often exceed 44 knots (50 mph) in racing.

Although all the 50′ catamarans  are essencially the same, teams have virtually unlimited options as to trimming and power usage, including navigating savvy, and human endurance.  For example, Emirates utilizes bicycle-like human power stations, while Oracle uses the more traditional hand cranked “grinders.”  The science of these vessels and the methods employed are awesome, details of which can be found here .     

As usual, click on the image for a closer look, and thanks for viewing. Comments are always welcome. M 🙂

 

Buffalo, Paris, and Chimney Pots.

Twenty four years ago I stayed at a Holiday Inn Express on Chippewa and Main in Buffalo, NY,  and was intrigued by the adjoining roof top of an early 20th century two-story building, rimmed with tens of classic chimney pots. 

Years later while in France, the view from the Eiffel Tower brought those chimney pots to mind…

Just for perspective because I like the image, here is a view from the top-level of the Eiffel Tower on September 25, 2012. I wonder how many of these “pots” would be within this view! 

As usual, click on the image for a closer look, and thanks for viewing. Comments are always welcome. M 🙂