The Kiss at the Stone Bridge -- continuing a theme


This stone bridge across the Danube was originally built in the 1600s but Regensburg Austria was already very old by then. It has a checkered history for sure beginning in Roman times when the salt mines there were worked by slaves. The expression "Back to the salt mines." refers to them then as well as in the Nazi era.

But now it is a lovely mid-sized city that fairly drips with history, wonderful public art, a regional art museum, and a handsome cathedral. Immediately behind me when I took this photograph is a small restaurant that was originally built as a kitchen to feed the workers building the bridge.

 

"90%, maybe 99% of the time the negative is only the beginning. The darkroom is where the real magic happens." I don't know about Pentti Sammallahi's percentages but I love this quotation.


Shortly before the pandemic careened in I had the pleasure of a visit from an art historian friend. She has forgotten more about art than I will ever know but she was about to do a lecture on a photographer. I had already shown her how a view camera works but she also needed to see what happens in the photographic darkroom. I reprinted a rather difficult negative so I already knew the strategy to print it with multiple filters, dodging and burning as I explained what each adjustment did for the final print. She watched with obvious pleasure and a stream of questions as I demonstrated the craft. As I expected she was delighted with the magic of seeing the print emerge in the developer. Her conclusion: "I had always thought that it was much more mechanical than that!" Yes!, mission accomplished.

 

Also much to my pleasure the weather cleared up (mostly) for the Folklife Festival at Seattle Center -- this is the 50th year for it. While the energy level wasn't up to pre-pandemic levels and there were many more individual and small-group musicians than larger groups it was still fun and a welcome opportunity to photograph and enjoy the entire scene.


I photographed this guy a couple of times in past years but he has added a new trick to his act -- balancing a ball on his head while juggling five other balls. He made it through three passes without losing one ball but then they went in every direction.

This sweet-faced singer in a red (you have to imagine that part) renaissance-styled dress and ringlet of gold flowers in her long hair was sitting with performer friends on the ledge south of the international fountain. She welcomed me taking her photograph.


I left her my card with my standard "Send me an email. If I get something I like I'll send you a print." I hope she does.

 




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