Photo Walk Fridays

Photo Walk Fridays: Meatpacking District, NYC by Leslie

This week's Photo Walk Friday is super special! Months ago, I asked if anyone wanted to join me for a photo walk in the city. Sandra from Raincoast Cottage, in Vancouver, emailed to tell me she was planning a trip to New York and would love to meet up. Over the next few weeks we emailed back and forth trying to figure out when and where we would go. We finally settled on the Meatpacking District of NYC, just south of Chelsea.

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Photo Walk Fridays: Sugar Loaf, NY by Leslie

Sugar Loaf is a sweet little art and craft village just 10 minutes from where we live. It's been around for 250 years and became a thriving craft center in the 1970s. It's filled with adorable shops that are always open on the weekend, and sometimes during the week. It really makes me happy to come here, there are so many things to discover and I love to see people living thier passions. Many of the business owners not only live and work in the shops, but often make most of what they are selling. When I visit here I dream of a life of simply making and selling my art. If you are in the area, it is a wonderful place to spend an afternoon.

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Photo Walk Fridays: Pennings Farm Market by Leslie

Pennings Farm Market is one of my favorite places to go in Warwick. It's just 15 minutes from our house and has everything you could ever want. Fantastic locally grown and produced food, a menu of sandwiches and salads, a place for the kids to play, animals to feed, a garden center, apple picking and seasonal delights. It's where we go to get our Xmas Tree and after we have hiked the Appalachian Trail. See the bottom of the post for some of my favorite things to buy at Pennings.

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Photo Walk Fridays: Cleveland, Ohio by Leslie

I loved everything about our short trip to Cleveland for an event celebrating an exhibit of photographs from Chris's book at the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame. Our hotel was in the incredible Arcade building and I felt like I had gone back in time. These first eight pictures are from there. It was gorgeous. Right outside the building was East 4th Street which is filled with outdoor patios and Xmas lights strung up everywhere. It was lunchtime and full of people and energy.

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Photo Walk Fridays: Walkway Over the Hudson by Leslie

Walkway Over the Hudson, Highland ⇒ Poughkeepsie, New York

A few weeks ago we drove up to Highland, New York with some friends to check out the Walkway Over the Hudson. It's an incredible old train bridge that has been converted to a trail for hikers, walkers, bikers and pets. It's 212 feet high above the Hudson River, with expansive views and it is 1.24 miles one way. We had a great time going across, but coming back my kids ran out of steam and it became a struggle. I'd recommend bringing a wagon or stroller so when the kids get tired they can take a break and you can still keep moving. There are parking lots, picnic tables and food stands on both sides, but make sure to bring cash, they don't take credit cards.

The directions are listed on the Walkway website and are easy to follow, we entered on the Highland Side, parked a little way down from the main parking lot, ate lunch (we bought sandwiches at the gas station/deli at the corner where you turn onto Haviland Road), walked all the way across, had an ice cream and water break at the picnic table on the other side and then walked all the way back. I think we were there for 3 or 4 hours, we also spent time just hanging out on the bridge, watching trains and boats go by down below. It was great watching all kinds of interesting people walk by. You can't tell from these photos but it was a very busy day with lots of people walking the bridge. Dogs and bikes are allowed, so you do need to have some caution if you have little kids like mine who like to run all over the place. We brought snacks and you'll need sunglasses and sunscreen. There is no shade. It's also cooler and windier in the middle of the bridge, so a light sweater came in handy.

What are your plans for this weekend? Doing anything fun?

Photo Walk Fridays: Chinatown, NYC by Leslie

Chinatown, New York City

I haven't been to Chinatown in New York in a long time. I used to go frequently when I lived in the city, and have taken visitors there even after I moved out of Manhattan, but hadn't been there for at least six years. I was craving some traditional Vietnamese Phở soup, which I can't get anywhere upstate. Chris and I wandered around and I found myself in all my favorite spots. If you visit Chinatown, be sure to venture off of the touristy Canal Street and search for the smaller side streets (like Doyers Street) to the south where you can find some authentic and original shops. I've listed all the places we visited at the end of the post.

Places We Visited:

Columbus Park: This park is a haven in a busy and densely populated area, with lots of older Asian men and women playing Mah Jong and cards. There was a band playing traditional music and it was all very charming. 

Pell and Doyers Street: These are my favorite streets in Chinatown and many of the pictures above were shot there. Doyers is a pedestrian only street and the easiest place in Chinatown to pretend to go back in time. 

Tings: On the corner of Pell and Doyers, this teeny tiny gift shop has it all packed in. I bought the paper animal mobile that hung above Milo and Quinn's cribs in this shop.

CoCo Fashion: I loved this adorable shop on Doyers street and bought 2 cute tops in great colors.

Phở Bang: Delicious and affordable food at this Mott Street Vietnamese restaurant. Phở, spring rolls, Vietnamese coffee and pork chops. Yum. Decor is standard and plain, but the service is fast and friendly.

Thanks for joining me on my photo walk of Chinatown! It's such a vibrant part of the city, filled with amazing sights and experiences that you won't soon forget. Have you been there? What are your favorite places to visit? Can you recommend a good restaurant?

I highly recommend getting out and seeing what kind of sights you can capture on your own photo walk. It works anywhere! Country road, big city or anything in between. If you are in the area and you would like to join me for a local walk, or if you have a visted a good spot that I should check out, please let me know. Until next time!

Photo Walk Fridays: Nolita, NYC by Leslie

Nolita, New York City

To the east of Soho, where it's less crowded, is one of my favorite spots in New York City. Nolita (North of Little Italy) is contained within Houston Street on the north, Broome Street on the south, Lafayette Street on the west and the Bowery on the east. Compared to Soho there are smaller, independent shops and a quainter, neighborhood vibe.

My husband and I met my friend Amber on Sunday after our Camp Mighty Reunion, for brunch at Café Gitane and then we walked around Nolita taking pictures. I took pictures of the urban landscape and Amber took pictures of me. I LOVE her shots of me and I put the three pictures that I was taking below in the same order as her shots.

First though, shots from Café Gitane. Baked eggs are one of my favorite things lately, you might remember I also had them during my Valentine's Day photo walk (that was pre-photo walk Fridays.) We also had yummy avocado on toast and the mint tea was amazing and came in a little glass instead of a tea cup.  Check out all the places that we visited in Nolita at the bottom of the post.

The next three images are the shots that I captured while Amber took pictures of me, in the same order as her shots:

I love shooting the street! I find so many great juxtapositions and contrasts, between colors, textures and the things that people leave behind. I love graffiti, street art and when paper and posters are peeled, ripped and overlapping. The layers upon layers are just so beautiful. It's similar to the beauty I see in an abandoned building. Also, have a look at the two bicycle pictures above and below. It's the SAME bike. I saw it in two different places within 30 minutes of each other. I'd love to know the story behind that bike. (Check out the third picture on this page, is that the same bike?)

Places We Visited:

Café Gitane: A trendy, small, French cafe on Mott Street at Prince. There have been a number of movies filmed there and there is a new location on the west side in the Jane Hotel. I loved the baked eggs, avacado toast and mint tea.

Germania Bank Building: Most of the graffiti that I photographed was on the old Germania Bank building. I was sure that this building was abandoned, but it is in fact owned and lived in by the photographer Jay Maisel. The whole building is his house. Talk about epic! I was not all that familiar with his work, though his name did sound familiar. He hosts workshops at his home/building and for $5000 you can live with him there for 5 days and immerse yourself in his world. Incredible.

Armor Lux: This tiny, beautiful shop on Mulberry is where that adorable dog hangs out. His name is Chainsaw. Chainsaw! Isn't that an awesome name? The shop owner, Rachael, was the sweetest person ever. Her shop is the first one in the US outside of France. We bought a Wool and the Gang Foxy Roxy scarf knitting kit as a gift for Chris's Mom's birthday. She loved it. I will be sure to go back and visit the next time I am in Nolita.

McNally Jackson Bookstore: We love book stores and McNally Jackson is one of the best. I spent a good amount of time browsing the magazines and listening to two hipsters discuss art. It was funny and painful at the same time. They have a cafe, a great kids section and they specialize in everything good.

Have you been to Nolita? What are your favorite places to visit? Thanks for joining me again for a Photo Walk! See you next Friday.

Photo Walk Fridays: Woodstock, NY by Leslie

I'm so excited to announce a new regular feature! Photo Walk Fridays will be published every Friday and will feature 10-20 photographs from a photo walk I have been on. I will also be sharing relevant links to the area that I photographed and featuring some cool spots to check out in New York City and the Hudson Valley.

The photo walk in the rain with Tracey Clark that I did at ALT Summit really taught me something important about myself. One of my favorite ways to take pictures is to just walk around and see what I can find. It's the process of discovery and slowing down to really look at things with my camera that I love and while it's something I have done many times before, it never occurred to me to frame it as a photo walk. I always thought of photo walks as something you did as a group, but I realised that this was something I could do alone as well. It's kind of a revelation for me and I'm excited to see what this project will bring to my photography and my life. Eventually, I would love to develop this into a group event in my local area as well. If you are interested, please let me know. With all of that introductory stuff out of the way, let's get to our first location.

Woodstock, New York

You have probably heard of the 1969 music festival that was named after this town, but did you know that the festival was not actually held in Woodstock, NY? The concert was held 60 miles away in White Lake, NY, however this town has embraced the still burning ember of hippie love that peaked that summer and it's not hard to find tie dye and bearded hippies still wandering around. I've always wanted to visit Woodstock and finally one Saturday my family drove up in search of a good book store. What we found was a charming art town, with a great energy and the original 60's hippie spirit alive and well. We also found two excellent book stores, which sadly, I did not photograph. We spent our time on Tinker Street and just wandered around into shops and galleries. You can find links to the all the places that we visited and photographed at the end of the post.

Places We Visited:

Reader's Quarry Bookshop: A wonderfully curated selection of used and rare books. Do not miss this place!

The Golden Notebook: An independent book store with a fantastic selection of new books, with lots of great art and design books, comic books and a section for the kids.

Woodstock Artists Association & Museum: There was an excellent show here, called "Shakespeare & Other Subjects" featuring prints and drawings by Milton Glazer. The show is probably down now, but I'm sure there are always amazing things to see there.

Oriole 9: Continental-themed cafe serving local and organic foods from the Hudson Valley. So delicious and the kids loved it too.

Tinker Toys: We loved this toy store! You must go visit, it was amazing. There are so many wonderful things for both the young and the old to discover.

Woodstock Byrdcliffe Guild: When we visited they had their 5x7 fundraiser up, or what was left of it, in which local artists donate a piece of artwork on a 5x7 canvas. There were some incredibly imaginative solutions to that challenge and the unicorn piece pictured above was one of my favorite items.

Legends: For everything tie dye and hippie, with the Blue Brothers lounging on the deck.

Next Time:

The Center for Photography at Woodstock

More Information:

Town of Woodstock Tourism