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Posts from the ‘Portland’ Category

on hanging out in portland as seen in kodak tri-x 400 black and white

PORTLAND, OREGON has pizza and wine and artisan coffee and artisan breweries and a cheese monger who took the national title once upon a time and there are many food carts and many many ethnic restaurants and cocktail bars and lots of wine. After all Portland sits between the vineyards of Washington state to the north and the vineyards in Sonoma county, California to the south and let’s not forget the many vineyards that dot the Willamette Valley and southern Oregon.

PORTLAND, OREGON has a large river—the Willamette—and nearby it has a humongous river—the Columbia. Not too far is a large mountain with skiing and hiking—Mt Hood—and nearby, sort of, are several other mountains, some larger and some smaller but still big, along the Cascade Range.

PORTLAND, OREGON is a short drive to the Pacific Ocean. One can drive straight west across Oregon along the Columbia River to Astoria. Or, one can drive south and west from Portland to Lincoln City. Or, one can take I-5 south toward Corvallis and cut west to Newport Beach. Further south are other ways to go to the beach from Interstate 5.

No wonder the population continues to grow. The admonition years ago to Californians “to visit but not stay” has not worked. Apartment buildings pop up regularly. Leave your neighborhood for three months and return to find a new building under construction or one finished already and is advertising for new tenants.  (Click on any photo to see it larger and in more detail. Cliquez sur une vignette pour l’agrandir.)

But wait, there’s more!

on the homeless in portland, oregon

PORTLAND, OREGON, like many American cities, is not doing well. Many streets are lined with tents. Grass parking strips have tents. Vacant areas, around freeways, where grass needs to be mowed, have small towns of tents.

Portland is not alone. Other cities, larger and smaller than Portland, continue to struggle with the same issue. When someone cannot pay the rent, because the rent is too high or because the initial costs of moving into an apartment or a house—the deposit, the guarantee, the insurance, the month-in-advance, in addition cost of the utilities—is impossible to pay, what is to be done?

(The images in this post are in a black and white style called 1930’s Grainy BlackMag. It is a look found in magazines and newspapers of the early 1930’s. This post tries to capture in part the harsh reality of the early years of the Depression.)

Oregon governor Kate Brown cannot seek re-election in November, 2022. Three candidates, all women, a Republican, a Democrat, and an Independent, are wanting the voters to give them a chance to resolve the homeless issues.

On homelessness, all three candidates have argued that they would bring urgency to “an unacceptable humanitarian crisis.”

Two of the candidates, the Republican and the Independent, who speaks like a Republican on many issues, want a harder line approach and have suggested that “they’d force accountability on houseless Oregonians and reduce public camping.”

Legally, I am not sure they can “sweep” Oregon public places, the streets and other public places, if that is what they intend to do, of people who have no where to go.  (Click on any photo to see it larger and in more detail. Cliquez sur une vignette pour l’agrandir.)

Once upon a time, Portland and Oregon towns and cities did not have a “problem” with homelessness. We did not ever see the homeless.

Once upon a time, Portland and Oregon towns and cities did not have a “problem” with people with mental and medical difficulties. We did not see them either. They did not exist.

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On being there, or on taking self-effacing selfies

sel·fie | ˈselfē | (also selfy) noun (plural selfies) informal
“a photograph that one has taken of oneself, typically one taken with a smartphone or webcam and shared via social media: occasional selfies are acceptable, but posting a new picture of yourself everyday isn’t necessary.”

self-ef·fac·ing | ˈˌself əˈfāsiNG | adjective
“not claiming attention for oneself; retiring and modest: his demeanor was self-effacing, gracious, and polite.”

re·flec·tion | rəˈflekSH(ə)n | noun
“1. the throwing back by a body or surface of light, heat, or sound without absorbing it: the reflection of light.  2. an image seen in a mirror or shiny surface: Marianne surveyed her reflection in the mirror.”

I do not take selfies with my smart phone. I have yet to point a smart phone my way, when I am alone or when others are nearby, and have not snapped and—voilà—a moment was captured.  (Click on any photo to see it larger and in more detail. Cliquez sur une vignette pour l’agrandir.)

When I think of selfies, I think of an extra-ordinary moment, one that I find amusing every time, that occurs whenever I visit the room in the Louvre where one sees the Mona Lisa.

People must line up and follow a path, partitioned by ropes, before reaching the head of the line. There the tourists will take photos of the Mona Lisa, or they will turn their backs to her, lift their smart phones, and take pictures over their shoulders of themselves with the Mona Lisa behind them.  (Click on any photo to see it larger and in more detail. Cliquez sur une vignette pour l’agrandir.)

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on looking for the vanishing point

1 : a point at which receding parallel lines seem to meet when represented in linear perspective
2 : a point at which something disappears or ceases to exist  —Merriam Webster Dictionary

A vanishing point is a point on the image plane of a perspective drawing where the two-dimensional perspective projections (or drawings) of mutually parallel lines in three-dimensional space appear to converge.  —Wikipedia

Mary Berry, an English non-fiction writer, arrived in Paris on Sunday, March 14, 1802. At 1:00 p.m. the next day, she went to the Louvre. “To give any idea of this gallery is quite impossible,” she wrote.

“You ascend to it (at present) by a commodious plain staircase, and first enter a large square room [the Salon Carré] … lined with all the finest Italian pictures, very well placed as to light. Out of this room you enter a gallery [the Grande Galerie]—such a gallery. But such a gallery!!! As the world never before saw, both as to size and furniture! So long that the perspective ends almost in a point [emphasis mine], and so furnished that at every step, tho’ one feels one must go on, yet one’s attention is arrested by all the finest pictures that one has seen before in every other country, besides a thousand new ones.”

If I want to impress someone when I visit a museum, I will mention the vanishing point in a painting. I will choose a painting with a single vanishing point, maybe one with two, and they are often obvious, and ask, “Have you noticed that this artist has used a single point to focus the elements in the painting?”  (Click on any photo to see it larger and in more detail. Cliquez sur une vignette pour l’agrandir.)

Once I did that while visiting a photography exhibit in southern France. A camera crew happened to be there. As I pointed to this and that in the photo, talking away, and without knowing, I was being filmed. When I looked up and back, I saw what was occurring and someone with the camera crew beckoned me to continue.  (Click on any photo to see it larger and in more detail. Cliquez sur une vignette pour l’agrandir.) But wait, there’s more!