Posted by Ellen

Portland photographer Corey Templeton took this picture last summer. He says the staircase is somewhere in the West End.

Posted by Ellen

With apologies to those among you who have been on this list since 2007, I am repeating here one of my favorite baby pictures, taken almost 30 years ago. As you can see, John got distracted, and Ted made his move.

The prize clutched in John's little fist must have been something really special, so tasty and/or entertaining that it would be coveted even by a six-month-old baby. Such as a nice little pebble or twig or clod of dirt.

I like this picture because it suggests something of the tone of brotherly, um, love among the boys as the family grew.  Even much, much later, whenever one of the boys would come home from college, odds were high he'd take a few minutes to go through his brothers' stuff and perhaps make off with a little something that wasn't being actively protected. Always, there was a stupid rationale--for example: "But it fits me better than it fits him."
 

Posted by Ellen

A wedding guest raises high his cellphone camera to snap a picture of a tiny red hot air balloon.

Inside the balloon is a scrap of paper bearing the bride's maiden name; since she is now acquiring a new name, her old name is set free to blow in the wind. Perhaps someone else can use it.

This scene is from a wedding last June in Estonia, where weddings and marriage are not as common as they are here in the U.S. I'm not sure if the balloon is an old tradition or a new one, but I am told it is an actual hot air balloon, heated above a small flame till it wafts away.

 

Posted by Ellen

After October 1 each year, admission to Maine's state parks is free. On October 2, several classes from Helena Dyer Elementary School in South Portland took a field trip to Bradbury Mountain State Park in Pownal.

The children and teachers spread across the sunny bald at the top of the mountain to eat lunch, listen to stories, enjoy the view, and of course complete worksheets.. These boys claimed a rock of their own at the edge of the mountaintop; one of them insisted that his last year's teacher had said it was okay to sit there. Before this year's teacher could say no, two of them were up on the rock and the third had pulled out a camera to record their moment of boldness.

This year's teacher did eventually approve their place on the rock. Let's hear it for teachers with steady nerves who take children up to the top of a mountain in October!

Posted by Ellen

Several of you asked to see more work by our Romanian Northern Irish West Texas friend Avram Dimitrescu. He calls this acrylic painting "Longhorn and Mountains."

For many more images, see Avram's blog and his portfolio website. He doesn't just paint chickens and cows, though I might be satisfied if he did; he's also got  paintings and drawings of landscapes, buildings, vehicles, food, and the digging arm of an excavating machine.
 

Posted by Ellen

The Atlantic coast of Senegal near the mouth of the Gambia River, as perceived by the sensors of the Landsat 7 satellite.

Posted by Ellen

A few days ago, the photo-science geniuses from Rochester Institute of Technology conducted their annual Big Shot, an experiment in painting with light. A scene is chosen--this year, the Smithsonian Museum of the American Indian on the Mall in Washington, D.C. The public is invited to participate by bringing handheld light sources, such as flashlights or candles. Streetlights, security lights, and other nearby high-tech sources of illumination are extinguished, so when night approaches, the scene gets darker and darker.

Inside lights are switched on to make the building glow in the dark. Then the crowd is arranged so that all the handheld lights paint the scene. This year, about 800 people participated, and after a 20-second exposure, the big shot came out pretty as a picture.

That's the Washington Monument in the background, leaning to the left because of distortion caused by the wide-open lens.

Posted by Ellen

Obviously, this picture was taken on a Monday. The scene is the tenement backyard at Park Avenue and 107th Street in New York, probably in the year 1900.

Setting up these clotheslines was not a trivial task, especially on the higher floors. A man would come around calling out "I climb poles!" and for about 25 cents he'd climb up and run the rope out over the pulleys. He also sold rope and pulleys, but if you'd planned ahead and bought them from the hardware store, you could save a few cents.

Notice the train track at the bottom of the photo--I'm guessing the whites were whiter at the far end of the block. Just on the other side of the tracks is the building where baseball player Lou Gehrig grew up, a few years after this picture was taken.

I suggest viewing this image as large as possible, so you can peep into the windows.

Posted by Ellen

If you send mail to this guy in New Gloucester, Maine, presumably it will be delivered here.

Posted by Ellen

Cranes fuss over the spires of Gaudi's La Sagrada Familia cathedral in Barcelona.