Magic light

A roadside sign touting old gas pumps intrigued me as Lucky and I made our way West in 2015. Getting off the Interstate revealed the restaurant was part of a truck stop. But two old Shell pumps outside #Shoemaker's restaurant doors kept me going.

Inside, a treasure trove of light awaited. The light was even more magical on that overcast Saturday. Because it’s all about light. 

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Remember: Don’t judge a book - or a photo op - by its cover. And always carry your camera.

Photo © 2015 Bob Soltys All Rights Reserved   

There's no place like home

Although I’ve been blessed to have galleries in London, Chicago, New York, Durango, and at home show my Paris pictures, far away places where we spend limited time can be challenging to photograph and to market. I’m glad I included some pictures of my faithful friend and companion Lucky the Jack Russell Terrier the last time I showed prints at FotoFest Paris.

Thankfully, Krzysztof Candrowicz of Łódź Art Center said “Go with it!” when he saw the picture of Lucky wondering what to do after the new owners of my home town camera store no longer allowed pets. 

 

  As I continued working on the project, which eventually illustrated the book A Lucky Life, I realized what Dorothy said in the Wizard of Oz is a truth in photography. Our best photo ops are right here at home, with unlimited projects, if we keep an open mind, remember to carry our camera so we’re ready for the decisive moment (as @thorstenovergaard explains it), and make time to see what’s right in front of us. 

 

Because most of us spend the majority of our time where we live and work, we have a better chance to make great images in our home town than we might at a frequently photographed far away place. 

      So click your ruby red shoes (or cordovan loafers in my case), and remember: “There’s no place like home.” 

                     Photos © Bob Soltys All Rights Reserved

 

You may never pass this way again

When I showed this photo from my ongoing project on American eateries at Center for Photography at Woodstock’s (CPW) salon , photographer Steve Gentile told me that Elliott Landy’s photos are no longer on the wall at Bread Alone  (a bakery and coffee shop). 

That makes me glad I made the time to make this picture before leaving the bakery during my visit to Woodstock two years ago.

 

You may never pass this way again, and even if you do, things change. 

Did you remember your camera?

As I carried my devoted friend and companion Lucky the Jack Russell Terrier across the street couple of nights ago , a driver slowed down and told us: “I wish I had my camera!”  Her wish - and the encounter - was the Universe’s reminder to always carry your camera with you.

Remembering my camera meant I was ready after listening to the voice of synchrodestiny – as Deepak Chopra calls it, aka the law of attraction – that said: “Go to the diner for breakfast,” bringing me to walking monk Bhaktimarga Swami’s world when he visited John’s Diner during his walk across America.

Rosie, Bhaktimarga John's Diner

My ever-present camera allowed me to take the photo of Lucky that became the cover of his new book, A Lucky Life, which is illustrated with my photographs of his travels and encounters along the path of a lucky life. 

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After one too many missed photo ops (hat tip to David Kennerly) because I didn’t feel like dragging my motor-driven SLR with me, in 1989 I bought the Leica M6 I’d been wondering whether I should spend so much money on. That smaller, lighter camera facilitated carrying my camera on my shoulder or in my satchel. No more excuses for not bringing my camera.

Although you can buy a used Leica at a reasonable price - for example an M4, M4-P, M2, or (for those who work with digital) a used M9 or Monochrome M at Tamarkin Camera, it doesn’t have to be a Leica. Any small camera - film or digital - will do. 

Whatever you have (or get) - carry it with you. 

   Photos © 2016 and 2004 Bob Soltys All Rights Reserve