A Shroud of Hair

Freezing movement in photography can lead you down weird paths. When you stop things while they’re moving, the results can be unexpected. 

I had initially anticipated having Mary’s hair and head blurred intentionally by the movement. After the first burst we took and I checked what I captured, my shutter speed was actually fast enough to freeze her movement. The results of her turning her head quickly side to side were surprisingly awesome. 

We ran through several bursts of various movements and ended up with some awesome shots.

Possessed.

Beautiful.

Protected.

Vulnerable.

There are no wrong answers.

Dueling Photographers

It doesn't get much better than cameras and coffee. I’m sure my friend Erlingur agrees.

It was Sunday. We met at Grace Street Coffee, in Georgetown after I went on a 20 minute quest looping around Whitehurst Freeway, Wisconsin Ave, and M Street for a parking space. I eventually parked in a spot by the Potomac River on Whitehurt Freeway. It probably wasn't a legitimate parking space, but hey - I didn't get towed. All's well that ends well, right? (Side note: I’ll take your DC parking tips.)

We grabbed a couple of small stools opposing some kind of a reclaimed wood coffee table. The full windows to my left, Erlingur's right, flooded the space with natural soft light. We threw back a couple cortados, compared metal Leicas to plastic Canons, and I grumbled about Tom Brady being too good and therefore should just retire.

We snapped some pictures inside Grace Street Coffee, downed a couple more cortados, then headed outside. Just out the door and to the left is the steep road Cecil Place. In between dodging traffic, we stood in the center of the street. It was high noon. A tumbleweed skittered across the street. People stopped and stared. We looked through the viewfinders of our cameras and shot. Dueling photographers.

I ended up with these shots. It doesn't get much better than cameras, coffee, and friends.

dave-mentzer-dc-photographer-portrait-of-erlingur

Travel Photography - New Castle, IN

New Castle, Indiana isn't exotic or popularized on Instagram.

It's sort of... Americana passed by.

Once home to a significant Chrysler plant, post-war New Castle was bustling. A town seemingly built by the automotive plant, in fact, was. As the plant downsized and cut jobs, the effects on New Castle were real and significant. Side walks buckled and were consumed by greenery. The downtown area diseased like most old small towns, with empty buildings, seemingly quarantined from occupation. 

Nevertheless, New Castle seems to be on the rise. However slow, the downtown is becoming refreshed, which is especially stunning when the early 20th century charm is maintained. 

If you are traveling to or through New Castle, make sure you stop at the Early Bird Diner and sit by the cook. Watching him cook is as good as the food (which is excellent - go for the Mickey Mouse pancakes!)

I'm fortunate enough to have two very good friends with one awesome dog that live in New Castle. If they moved, I'd miss that pulse of Americana that flows through New Castle.

Link - Rescue Dog Turned Therapy Dog

This is Link.

His life started rough. Without a home, Link was hit and dragged by a car. He ended up in a ditch, where he laid for dead for an unknown length of time with a terribly injured rear leg. He was severely underweight and dehydrated when found. Fortunately, some incredible veterinarians were able to save his life and repair his leg. It also became known that Link was born deaf. His caring nature was quickly discovered when he entered a foster home, where he helped raise puppies and befriended a pit bull previously involved in dog fighting. Link found his permanent home when my friends adopted him. They have continued to encourage Link's positive influence; he just completed his requirements to become a certified therapy dog.