Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Adeli de Gràcia

DSCN6132 adeli

Every once in awhile there appears a person who has a unique and distinctive look, in that good way.

Usually, as a street photographer, I look for that person. Someone who might look different from the norm, dress different, act different, and in today's world it seems like the norm might be the new different.

Sitting at McDonald's and to my right is a young man with hair piled so high ... higher than I've ever seen or ever noticed. Rather than take a candid photo, I approached him and while he didn't understand why I would want to take his picture, he agreed.

His name is Adeli of the barrio of  Gràcia. He had a smile that lit up the room, eyes that twinkled and a warm demeanor that made me feel good.

Do you see what I see?

Monday, November 23, 2015

Catedral Basílica Metropolitana de Barcelona: Observe and be observed

Catedral Basílica Metropolitana de Barcelona: Observe and be observed

Every day people of all genders walk, dance, and eat in the plaza of the cathedral; probably one of the most famous areas of the world. Street performers play their instruments, the city hosts events and others ask for money.

The cathedral's beauty, it's location and rich Roman history make the all important 'selfie' a must; especially posing in the Kardashian* style. Can you see yourself here?

Find a bench, sit, relax and enjoy the cathedral (basilica) like the three in the photo. You can be the observer and not the observed.

You will NEVER be disappointed.

*a foot and head forward with pouty lips

Sunday, November 22, 2015

La playa Bogatell

DSCN5993 bogatell

What a surprise to wake up this morning and feel how chilly Barcelona is!

The apartment was cold and dressing in my street clothes felt like ice trickling down my back.

Eleven days ago the sky was sunny and WARM like a July day in November.

Hard to believe then and hard to believe now.

Saturday, November 21, 2015

Barcelona prepares for the Christmas holidays!

DSCN5669 pass de gracia xmas decor

Hard to believe that another year is coming to an end but,

Before the end can begin, lights have been hung on major streets. For that matter, just about EVERY street is decorated for the upcoming holidays.

How odd to see the decorations. The weather was warm and sunny; an odd contrast to the Midwest in the United States this time of year. I've always associated cold, frigid and snowy weather with the Christmas holidays.

I saw the decorations hovering over the street on November 06, 2015. The city prepares early. Personally, I can learn from the ajuntament of Barcelona. I could try to be more diligent and timely in my postings but alas, I'd hate to make that a resolution or resolve to making any promises to myself. My track record to ME is not so good.

Unlike me, I bet YOUR GOOD!!

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Yes, Luna ... There is an IKEA

Hidden and far away, tucked in the belly of Barcelona, is a store called IKEA in L'Hospitalet de Llobregat.

Bus and train are the way I get around Barcelona and the L95 was one way to reach IKEA. According to the internet, the L95's route begins at Barcelona's center, which I believe is la plaça de Catalunya.

But which streets from the plaça? Can you imagine how many streets have access to the plaça? Many! Why couldn't directions be explained so that a 4 year old and mature people (like me) could understand?

I was on a mission and I was NOT going to give up. I put the idea of finding IKEA aside for awhile, for confusion reigned for a long long time. (I'm too embarrassed to say how long).

I went about my simple but eventful life meeting locals, pesky tourists and discovering new places, like Casanova Foto.

And, finding the L95 bus!

Indeed! The L95 bus is almost in front of the Casanova Foto shop. Crazy, eh?

We went to IKEA that day and a few more times since then.


PS:  Casanova Foto and origin of the L95 bus
     Ronda de la Universitat, 35, 08007 Barcelona
     933 02 73 63

Pass it on!

Saturday, April 11, 2015

Los Caracoles

New restaurant in the Gothic Quarter of Barcelona:  just opened.  Barely 190 years ago.

Usually, tourists swarm around the front of  "Los Caracoles" like army ants intent on wrecking my chances of getting a sweet shot of the place. 

Today was different:  Take a look at the proof!.

Three humans mark the points of the imaginary triangle. They appeared as if they'd conspired with me to come up with a shot that would impress you!

Any time you're looking for a fine place to eat with a friendly photographer-lady waiting outside, you know where to go.  I'm waiting!

Monday, April 06, 2015

I only have eyes for me!

At the top of the La Rambla de Catalunya and Via Diagonal, is the Coquettish Giraffe sculpted by Josep Granyer i Giralt. Everyone and anyone, even maybe you have met someone and somebody lingering and meandering.

Yes. It is a whimsical piece and on this Semana Santa (Easter Sunday) he has primped him or herself  for you.

Everything about him for me screams guy.

Could it be the mirror that does so?

Monday, March 30, 2015

Mindless Game

If he had only written a list, he wouldn't have forgotten the most important "to-do" item.

Oh, the games we play as we get older, to master memory.

Thursday, March 26, 2015

A Room Where it Always Rains (Una habitación donde siempre llueve)

I was shocked. Somehow, someway, I missed this area of the city. It's called la Barceloneta. In the Barceloneta is an area called la plaça del Mar. At del Mar you will see the sculptor called "A Room Where it Always Rains" by Juan Muñoz.

 The figurines are tall ... close to 5 feet. The statue's faces are haunting. 

The statues are in a "room" where the "walls" are slats of iron.

FYI, behind me was the playa de port vell. If you like sun, fun, water, great food and affordable convenient stores, then be sure to consider this area.

I will!

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

No Title

I love this photo and yet I'm at a loss to know what to title.

Originally, I had "Is that all there is", but the phrase kept replaying in my head like a golden oldie.

So, I surrender. If any of you can help me with naming the photo, I'd be so happy.

Monday, March 23, 2015

Too much of a stretch, even for a ballerina

What's the ballerina doing here?!

Is she the odd man out?

A ballerina helps a hip-hop group perform warm-up exercises.

The crowd is delighted. 

Friday, March 20, 2015

Thursday, March 19, 2015

A real puzzler

When I first saw him, I was puzzled and wondered why he was sitting on the steps of the Maremagnum.

After all, he's in Barcelona, and when in Barcelona you walk, eat, shop, rest, and then start again until you drop from exhaustion.

But he was alone, and I liked his ruggedness, quiet demeanor, intense concentration and I wanted to take a photo for its perspective and composition.

For a few minutes, look before zooming in on the photo. Can you figure out what he's working on?

Did you guess Sudoku?! I would have never guessed.

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

A name so nice, they used it twice

TapaTapa is nestled at the very opposite end of the Maremagnum entrance.

After a busy day of walking, talking and shopping,  I suggest you take a break for a tapa at the TapaTapa -- a name so nice, they used it twice.

Honestly, you can't go wrong with just about any restaurant in Barcelona, for their taste will delight you with sinful pleasure.

And look: TapaTapa is located right by the water;  if you got any closer, you'd be in the Mediterranean Sea! How's that for a view?

You'll experience real life. Way better than watching TV.

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Yo soy la jefa (I am the boss)

When I first saw the poster sponsored by Toulose Business School, I felt pleased that this woman looked in control of her business future and empowered. I thought the poster to be strong.

But then I began to question the words.

The poster reads: Durante los proximos 3 anos, y so la jefa.

Translation: During the next 3 years ... I am the boss.

And then what?

I feel it should have read: AFTER the next 3 years, (for the rest of my working life),  I will be the boss.

How would you have written words?

Or is it ok the way it is?

Or am I making a mountain out of a molehill?

Sunday, March 15, 2015

Marato Barcelona - 2015

Runners participating in the Zurich Barcelona Marathon.

The run is 42.195 km or 26.2188 miles. 

Well, when you can't get a taxi, great running shoes and good insurance (sponsored by Zurich) are a must.

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Her face doesn't matter.

I had not seen her face but she surely caught my eye for her stance was confident and while unassuming was assuming.

Very rarely does a woman attract my attention but I've learned through the eyes of the camera and more an awareness of my  immortality to appreciate ALL that is around me.

She was alone with long auburn hair spiraling down her shoulders and back.

Her legs looked like a never ending tube of toothpaste squirted into stiletto heels so pointy that hopefully she had the very ever high heels registered as a dangerous weapon.

I clicked a few photos of her more to see how the new adjustments I made on my camera appealed to my taste. A bit saturated and something I would have to fix at a later time. I didn't want to lose her.

She walked past me and slowly began turning. I realized she was taking selfies of herself, pouting her voluptuous lips in that way I see actresses do after a new round of collagen injections. Interesting, I thought, but not exceptionally exciting or different to post or even care. I realized her face just didn't matter.

And then I knew what I liked about her.

Can you guess?

It was the curvature of her body, truly shaped like an hour glass. I really liked the way she moved her body and she did too.

She is a woman and proud. And I like that.

Friday, March 06, 2015

A kiss on each cheek

While I do enjoy the works of Salvadore Dali, the men on the balcony interest me the most. They have sat or stood there, come rain or shine, for the last 12 years, sometimes without moving a muscle and they have been my interest.

They look in my direction, but not at the same time. I have waved and waved but they seem not to notice how foolish I look. How can that be? Everyone else notices.

They ogle the crowd below them or stare, fixated, at the statue of Christopher Columbus across the street from their position.

This day, they both looked in my direction. Success.

Good things come in small steps. I can wait another 12 years for them to smile.

But, I don't think I'll wait anothor 12 years beyond the smile to meet them.

Next time, we shall say "hola" and greet each other the Spanish way, a kiss on each cheek.

Thursday, March 05, 2015


Sometimes, there is a photo, where the subject needs no explanation.

Can you guess the main interest of the picture I took?

I usually would say hasta luego (because I'm in Spain) but today I say, too-da-loo. (Sounds very Cheecago, eh?)

Wednesday, March 04, 2015

Passing Bye

I admire Henri Cartier Bresson. Who doesn't?

I've looked at his photos, (probably not as often as I should), and tried on occasion to emulate his simple yet complex style.

However, let's face it. If you have lots and lots of time, good lighting, an obscure place to linger while not accused of loitering and confident that you won't need a latrine break, you, too, can be a Bresson.

Tuesday, March 03, 2015

A clean shot of a domestic posing 2 stories high

I couldn't believe my eyes.

At first, her back faced me and she stood at the very top of the ladder, making sure the window was cleaned from corner to corner. I was sure she was going to fall. I took the shot.

She then turned around, continued cleaning and of a crowd of about 25 people she spotted ME (I couldn't believe it) ... and I took this shot.

She was as bewildered by me taking her photo as I was shocked by her fearlessness.

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Marilyn itching to greet you!

How disconcerting it was to hear purring as we leisurely walked down la Rambla.

I looked here and there but no where could I find the source of the sound.

Sometimes it pays to look up, rather than make discoveries the ceremonious right or left.

So, I was surprised to see "Marilyn"  on the balcony waving, smiling, itching to greet you and enticing many of us to the Museu de l'Eròtica de Barcelona.

You game?!

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Center Stage

This photo is almost perfect ... the lighting that is.

Oh, ok ... the bicyclists aren't bad either.

This photo was taken at the entry way of la Plaça Sant Felip Neri.

If you can, please take time to read about the bombings by the Italian Air Force that took place during the Spanish Civil War.

The area was shelled and about 43 persons were killed, mostly children attending nursery school.

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

La yaya!!

A great model!

She sits in the window, practically everyday. She appears shy and needless to say, she hasn't spoken a word to me in many years and probably never will.

For holidays, she gussies up, like she did here for Christmas.

She's Grandma ... (la yaya),  a seamstress and she mends clothing. That's what it says on the pink handkerchief.  I love the sound of the words "la yaya".

No!! I've not gone looney although some might suspect I am already bonkers.

I've used Arreglo for my sewing needs as mending is not a specialty of mine. A little expensive for me but in a pinch they do a real good job.

If you know anyone who is good at mending, alterations and resides in the barrio of Gràcia, and reasonably priced, please let me know.

Tuesday, February 17, 2015


Fargas is the best place to buy the best chocolate in Barcelona.

I know first hand because I've tasted a few samples. My favorite are the chocolate clusters ... yum-yum.

But! My heart still favors anything Hershey.

Sunday, February 15, 2015

Michael Fryer's 'I saw a man-he danced with his wife'

Six weeks ago I heard the fan to the laptop make funny noises be sluggish. I have an HP envy dv6 and from what I've read this model is notorious for overheating.

Then, one day, I opened the laptop, the laptop was quiet and an error message appeared on the display warning me that over use of a non functioning fan might lead to many problems. I shut it down and for 6 weeks the computer has been absent from life.

Michael Fryer-Navy Pier, summer 1989
I saw a man-he danced with his wife

Yes ... I called the HP parts department and they sent me something or other that had nothing to do with the fan, even though I was informed they were correct. Eventually, my problem was handed over to a creative case worker who assured me that the recommended part recommended would work with my model.

You see, I had the laptop custom made from top to bottom and paid a handsome sum to get ALL the features I required for photo processing.

Now ... what makes my problem really REALLY bad is that my laptop is American born and I'm now in Spain and this particular part was not available here. Hewlett-Packard mailed the package to a United States address and then a family member sent the part to Spain.


 Chicago Tribune Magazine, August 27, 1997

Another dilemma. For the past 3 years, packages sent to Spain have been getting stuck in Madrid's customs department and many have waited from 6 months to a year to get their parcels released. So, this time I made certain there was an accurate description of the package written in both English and Spanish.

Meanwhile, I scouted around and got someone in Barcelona to replace the fan. On Friday the 13th of February, within 3 hours of the drop off, my fan was home, snoring ever so quietly.

Whew! I was and still am elated and NOT griping against HP.

But. I plea to YOU!!

While I waited and waited to get my computer resolved, I had access to an outdated computer with a Spanish keyboard.  I took the opportunity to sift through old print, scanned and dslr photos.

What I show you here is a photo from the August 27, 1997 edition of the Chicago Tribune Magazine taken at Navy Pier in Chicago by Michael Fryer in 1989. I've googled Michael Fryer, wrote someone named Michael Fryer and received no response.

You see, the magazine photo is worn, the colors have faded and the paper fragile.

I saved this magazine, because for me, the picture made me happy (still does) and Fryer's photographic style has influenced me a whole lot.

And, I would love to know who couple is and where are they now.

If anyone out there knows Michael Fryer, can you please let him know of this post.

I would be ever so grateful.

Thursday, January 01, 2015

Beware of street photography!!

Years of taking photos has obviously taken a toll on this man.

Or, is what he viewing a painful sight?

P.S. I used an old 35-105mm AF zoom nikkor lens and I couldn't be more pleased. The shot was not posed and this was the only photo I was able to take.