This woman was sitting at the edge of a patch of shade, in the outdoor section of a small deli/restaurant called Arte around the corner, on Columbus between 72nd and 73rd St.
I couldn't tell whether she was writing a journal entry, a short story, or a letter to a friend; but she seemed very peaceful and relaxed...
Note: this photo was published in a Dec 8, 2008 blog article entitled "How You Can Write For Magazines - Part Two." It was also published in a Jul 29, 2009 blog titled "Consejos para escribir cada vez mejor." And it was published in a Linux Gazette blog titled "autorzy tłumaczeń." More recently, it was published in an Aug 23, 2009 blog titled "How to Work Around Writer's Block." And it was published in a Sep 1, 2009 blog titled "Matador Members Reach Semi-Final in Trazzler’s NYCGO Writing Contest." More recently, it was published in an Oct 2, 2009 blog titled "‘Novel’ workshop affords journalism students inside look." And it was published in an Oct 19, 2009 blog titled "I Wanna Write like Nora Roberts: 7 Tips for Prolific Writers." Moving on: it was also published in a Dec 10, 2009 blog titled "Creative Writers, See How Much You Know on This Quiz."
Moving into 2010, the photo was published as an illustration in an undated (Feb 2010) Squidoo blog titled "Who Is Nora Roberts?." And it was published in a Mar 21, 2010 blog titled "La base científica (2ª parte): estudio de la Universidad de Texas sobre el poder curativo de la escritura." It was also published in an Apr 6, 2010 blog titled "Writer's Back!" and an Apr 22, 2010 blog titled "Why Do You Write?" And it was published in a May 29, 2010 blog titled "Guest Post: How to handle multiple priorities," by Luc Reid. It was also published in a Jul 11, 2010 blog titled "The Secret to Success."
Moving into 2011, the photo was published in an undated (mid-Jan 2011) blog titled "8 Tips for Writing a Killer SEO Cover Letter." It was also published in a Jan 15, 2011 blog titled "Learning SEO to help your Website succeed online." And it was published in a Jan 30, 2011 blog titled "7 Tricks to Write Faster, Better, And More Insightful Articles … Right Now."
The photo was also published in a Feb 1, 2011 blog titled "Power Thinking vs. Positive Thinking." It was also published in a Feb 9, 2011 blog titled "10 Ways to Build Your Blog Readership." And it was published in a Mar 1, 2011 blog titled " The (semi-)mobile workspace." It was also published in an Apr 12, 2011 blog titled "5 "Tries" That Get Writers Stuck." And it was published in an Oct 13, 2011 blog titled "Skrivprocessen - vad ska man tänka på?" It was also published in a Nov 21, 2011 blog titled "Five Online Aids for the Serious Writer." And it was published in a Dec 4, 2011 blog titled, simply, "Writing."
Moving into 2012, the photo was published in a Feb 19, 2012 blog titled "7 Tricks to Write Faster, Better, And More Insightful Articles … Right Now." And it was published in an undated (early Jun 2012) blog titled "Self-Improvement." It was also published in an undated (late Jun 2012) blog titled "Novel Writing Project: The Quiet Cambodian," as well as a Jun 22,2012 blog titled "How to Successfully Set your Blog up for Guest Posting." And it was published in a Sep 27, 2012 blog titled "Huffington Post: blogger open source vs l'ipocrisia del sig. Gubitosa," as well as a Sep 29, 2012 blog titled "How To Get Your Guest Posts Accepted By Top Blogs," and an Oct 22, 2012 blog titled "Ask the Survival Mom: Answers to some of your questions." It was also published in an undated (mid-Nov 2012) blog titled "10 Stvari Koje Svaka Mama Treba da Ima na Umu."
Moving into 2013, the photo was published in an Apr 8, 2013 blog titled "Flex Your Abdominal Muscles: Top 10 Ways to Score Sexy Abs." It was also published in an Apr 11, 2013 blog titled "Fitness Scholarships: Acquiring And Keeping These people."
On Oct 3, 2009 I made some editing improvements to the photo. Primarily, I reduced the extent of shadows in the area behind the writer-woman. I also made a slight increase to the saturation of the skin tones in her face (and the other woman's back), as well as the overall "vibrancy" of the non-skin-tone colors in the picture. Not a huge change, but I think it's a little better this way... of course, I should have done all of this when I first took the photo, but at that point (a year ago), I didn't know how. Things get better, little by little...
This is part of an evolving photo-project, which will probably continue throughout the summer of 2008, and perhaps beyond: a random collection of "interesting" people in a broad stretch of the Upper West Side of Manhattan -- between 72nd Street and 104th Street, especially along Broadway and Amsterdam Avenue.
I don't like to intrude on people's privacy, so I normally use a telephoto lens in order to photograph them while they're still 50-100 feet away from me; but that means I have to continue focusing my attention on the people and activities half a block away, rather than on what's right in front of me.
I've also learned that, in many cases, the opportunities for an interesting picture are very fleeting -- literally a matter of a couple of seconds, before the person(s) in question move on, turn away, or stop doing whatever was interesting. So I've learned to keep the camera switched on (which contradicts my traditional urge to conserve battery power), and not worry so much about zooming in for a perfectly-framed picture ... after all, once the digital image is uploaded to my computer, it's pretty trivial to crop out the parts unrelated to the main subject.
For the most part, I've deliberately avoided photographing bums, drunks, drunks, and crazy people. There are a few of them around, and they would certainly create some dramatic pictures; but they generally don't want to be photographed, and I don't want to feel like I'm taking advantage of them. I'm still looking for opportunities to take some "sympathetic" pictures of such people, which might inspire others to reach out and help them. We'll see how it goes ...
The only other thing I've noticed, thus far, is that while there are lots of interesting people to photograph, there are far, far, *far* more people who are *not* so interesting. They're probably fine people, and they might even be more interesting than the ones I've photographed ... but there was just nothing memorable about them.