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Fort Worth At Dusk


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#1 Dismuke

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Posted 09 October 2004 - 11:53 PM

This evening, I finally got a chance to go by Montgomery Ward during daylight hours to take some photos of the demolition of the '60s base and the rubble from the auto center. Afterward, I figured I would go downtown and see if there was any progress on the Baker Building base restoration. By then, it was already dusk and the first lights were starting to come on. It all looked so very pretty in contrast to the last moments of daylight and the overall gloom of today's cloud cover. The only thing that did not make it a perfect picture taking opportunity was the fact that I did not have a tripod with me and on Saturday night there are too many people walking the street to best photograph certain subjects. Here are the ones that I think turned out best. Some of the most interesting photos, unfortunately, did not come out so well due to the fact that it is hard to take pictures of lights without a tripod - especially if one is using a zoom lens.

Anyhow, I will present the photos in more or less the order I took them so you can see the progress of dusk to night.

We sure do live in a pretty city.

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Too bad the old Worth Hotel was replaced by that ugly annex to the Fort Worth Club.



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The new Bank One building. I really like this photo. Too bad the man was sitting in the doorway. I didn't notice him until after I downloaded the photo. But even if I had, it is not like I could really ask him to leave.




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Too bad I didn't have a tripod.



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The Sinclair Building entrance way looking. Wow. Back in the 1920s, they sure had style!


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This is the only time of day when I think the City Center towers don't look half bad. The rest of the time, I think they look cold, stark and malevolent.



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When I was taking this picture, the lady working there came out and asked me if she could help me. She was polite - but it was almost as if I were taking photos of some sort of military installation. She seemed to be a bit puzzled when I said that it was a pretty building and I just wanted to take a picture of it.



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Get rid of the cars (or at least replace them with 1920s models) and add a bit of fog or drizzle and this would be great.

(Continued in reply - apparently there is a limit to how many photos may appear in a single posting)
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#2 Dismuke

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Posted 09 October 2004 - 11:57 PM

Continued....


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If you have not seen Pier One from Belknap at night - do so. The picture does not do the lighting scheme justice. Rarely am I much of a fan of modern buildings - but I have really fallen for this one. The building's setbacks seen from various angles are beautiful and give it a certain grandeur that recalls the setbacks on a lot of art deco buildings of the late 1920s - and yet it does so without being "retro." I think the lighting scheme, like the building, is very imaginative - and that is always rare in this day and age. Plus the upper floors just below the crown are lit up in such a way as to make them appear very elegant.

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The Radio Shack complex is also quite impressive by night. Unfortunately, it is very difficult to photograph without a tripod. I love fountains, so I am very happy that they included one. The color scheme is a wee too bit gaudy for my taste - but I think it is great that they lit it up in multiple colors.


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I didn't have much luck photographing the fountain. This was the best of the bunch. I am not sure that even a tripod would have helped me with this at night


Well - that's all. I will try this again some evening when downtown is not so busy and will make sure to bring a tripod along.
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#3 KevCoz

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Posted 10 October 2004 - 09:22 AM

These are very nice photos, Dismuke. I agree, we are fortunate to live in such a pretty city.

#4 mosteijn

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Posted 10 October 2004 - 09:57 AM

The only thing that did not make it a perfect picture taking opportunity was the fact that I did not have a tripod with me and on Saturday night there are too many people walking the street to best photograph certain subjects.

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Blasphemy! People make the pictures all the better, you can never have too many people in a photo ;)

Here's a suggestion if you're ever caught again in a tripod situation and you don't have your tripod: find a stable, flat surface that you can lay your camera on (or hold VERY still) and then take the pic. It's no substitute for a good tripod, but it's a trick that can come in handy quite often, as it is extremely difficult to hold still enough to get a night pic non-blurry.

I'm looking forward to the rest of your pics, Dismuke.

#5 redhead

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Posted 10 October 2004 - 10:28 AM

Dis--club Vivid is supposedly an alternative hang-out. The woman probably thought you were going to do some expose or something of the sort. FYI.

#6 redhead

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Posted 10 October 2004 - 10:29 AM

Sorry---forgot to say thank for the photos!

#7 John T Roberts

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Posted 10 October 2004 - 11:33 AM

Dismuke, those are still pretty good even without a tripod. It shows that I'm behind the time as I thought that RadioShack would not be finished with the fountain by the time they opened. I'm real busy, but maybe I can get some shots later. I still haven't taken final Pier 1 photographs.

I will change the photo limit on the forum so that more pictures can be posted in one thread.

Redhead, I split the impact fee subjects off of the housing thread per your request. However, no one had responded since the split.

#8 Dismuke

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Posted 10 October 2004 - 12:08 PM

Dis--club Vivid is supposedly an alternative hang-out.  The woman probably thought you were going to do some expose or something of the sort. FYI.

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Pardon me for being so utterly clueless on such things as I basically live in my own private little subculture - but what sort of things to people allegedly do at supposed alternative hang-outs? Presumably it would be something illegal if there is a fear of an expose.

From the outside, it looks like it would be an interesting place to visit. It looks like it would be a perfect place to enjoy the sort of music one would have heard in late 1920s - early 1930s Harlem jazz clubs. Wow - if only that could be the case. But I don't even attempt to enter such places no matter how interesting they might look on the outside because I know that, once I go inside, the sounds that will hit me will give me an instant headache.

If it is indeed an alternative hang-out - what are the implications for downtown as a whole? Is this an early warning sign that things are starting to go downhill? Is there a danger that it will attract a crowd that will scare away the sort of people that you currently find in downtown at night?
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#9 Dismuke

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Posted 10 October 2004 - 12:33 PM

Blasphemy! People make the pictures all the better, you can never have too many people in a photo :smwink:

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I guess it largely depends on what you are taking pictures of.

My favorite subject for taking pictures is architecture - especially old buildings. Having people in such photos tends to distract from it. This is particularly true if one is taking pictures of old buildings due to modern styles of dress. People today dress considerably more casually then they did 60 plus years ago. There is something kind of incongruous about a photo of a 1920s art-deco building with a very grand and ornate entrance way with a person clad in tee shirt and shorts standing in the middle. It is one thing if the person is your friend and you are wanting to take a snap shot to preserve the memory of the occasion. But if your subject is the building, then the question becomes "who's that - and why is he there?"

That's not to say, of course, that people aren't interesting subjects in their own right. Pictures of street scenes and of people from various backgrounds going about their daily activities can indeed be quite interesting and fascinating. But it is something that I just have never really gotten into - perhaps, in part, because I would feel a bit awkward about taking photos of total strangers. So the only photos of people that I usually take are snapshots of people that I know. I also occasionally enjoy taking pictures of scenery and nature - and for similar reasons, the presence of people in such photos usually takes away from them.
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#10 John T Roberts

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Posted 10 October 2004 - 01:22 PM

There is something kind of incongruous about a photo of a 1920s art-deco building with a very grand and ornate entrance way with a person clad in tee shirt and shorts standing in the middle.

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Dismuke, that is my normal attire when taking photographs of buildings! Are you saying that I should wear a suit and tie when I'm doing this photography? :smwink:

Seriously, I do see what you are saying. However, it doesn't really bother me to have people in my pictures. From time to time, when I am taking nightlife shots of Sundance, I prefer lots of people. I'm sure many of you are aware that I post in other forums and I have become aware that if there aren't any people in the photographs, then Fort Worth is going to be critiziced for being deserted and having a lack of pedestrian activity downtown.

Overall, those pictures are very nice. I hope that you can continue to contribute to the photography threads here.

#11 Dismuke

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Posted 10 October 2004 - 03:26 PM

Dismuke, that is my normal attire when taking photographs of buildings!  Are you saying that I should wear a suit and tie when I'm doing this photography? :smwink:

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No, of course not. When I took those photos, I was wearing old denim jeans and an old shirt and I didn't bother to shave on Saturday morning. I spent most of the day doing work around the house - so I certainly did not present the best appearance. I didn't exactly look like a park bum - but I wouldn't have felt comfortable going anywhere even semi-nice. But the point is that I didn't include myself in any of the photos.

I am not knocking casual dress - only suggesting that there are certain occasions where it is not appropriate. For example, I would suggest that it is not appropriate attire for going to an opera, symphony or ballet performance at Bass Hall. I don't especially think it is necessary for a person to dress up in a suit and tie for such a performance either. But one should at least try to look nice and well groomed.

As far as the photos are concerned, it really depends on what the subject matter of the photo is. If the point of the photo is to capture images of someone who happens to be dressed in a tee shirt and shorts - well, a grand, ornate early 20th century doorway can make one heck of a backdrop. But if the doorway itself is one's focus, well, to me, someone wearing commonplace, casual clothing undercuts what makes the doorway unique and worthy of photographing - the fact that it is NOT commonplace plus the level of detail, the concern for quality and the sense of style and grandeur that was a hallmark of the era.

For the same reason, I generally prefer to exclude modern automobiles when taking photos of vintage buildings. Unfortunately, that is not always possible as a practical matter.


From time to time, when I am taking nightlife shots of Sundance, I prefer lots of people.


Sure - because the subject matter calls for lots of people.

When it comes to "creative" photography (as opposed to snapshots or using photos to merely document how something looks) selectivity is highly important. And, of course, there is no reason why a person cannot attempt a certain amount of creativity when it comes to snapshots or documentation.

It is selectivity that gives creative photography common ground with art. Photography is not art due to the fact that art is a re-creation of reality while photography merely documents it. Selectivity is absolutely crucial to art. What an artist chooses to include - and what he chooses to not include - when he goes about making his particular unique re-creation of reality has a powerful impact on the work's meaning. By a similar use of selectivity, a good photographer can produce photographs capable of conveying an emotional/philosophical statement as powerful as that of a work of art. Indeed, leaving issues of technical competence aside, the difference between a random snapshot and a great photograph is the use of selectivity. I don't pretend to be a great photographer - but I do attempt to use selectivity whenever appropriate and possible.

Of course, what one chooses to include and not include is going to vary from one photographer to another based on each photographer's aesthetic value judgments. It is possible for any technically competent person to click the shutter at just the right moment and end up with a great photograph. But a good photographer knows how to find and set such moments up so that they are more than just a random accident.
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#12 John T Roberts

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Posted 10 October 2004 - 05:37 PM

Dis, I was just kidding, of course. I also agree with you about photography. Actually, I just wish that I had more time to shoot pictures and to devote to this web site.

#13 mosteijn

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Posted 11 October 2004 - 10:06 PM

Can't believe I didn't comment on this earlier, but the Radio Shack fountain looks wild! I must check it out when I'm downtown one of these nights.

Oh yeah, and I was also being a bit sarcastic about the people thing. I just find people to be the most organic thing to photograph, and there's something about having a buzzing street scene that makes pictures appeal more to me. I like taking pictures of architecture, too, so I know what you're talking about. Different strokes for different folks, I guess.

#14 Dismuke

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Posted 11 October 2004 - 10:57 PM

Can't believe I didn't comment on this earlier, but the Radio Shack fountain looks wild! I must check it out when I'm downtown one of these nights.



I drove past this evening and the fountains were not running. Perhaps they were merely testing them out the night I was there and I happened to stumble across them at just the right time.
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#15 gcarey

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Posted 14 October 2004 - 03:25 PM

Great photos Dismuke!

#16 John T Roberts

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Posted 14 October 2004 - 09:36 PM

Dismuke, they had the fountains running for the gathering of the employees and media for the first occupancy move in on Friday. They ran for a few days and then they were turned off. Now the contractor is knocking holes in the stone retaining wall where the water falls from the fountains above.

#17 Dismuke

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Posted 15 October 2004 - 09:57 AM

Dismuke, they had the fountains running for the gathering of the employees and media for the first occupancy move in on Friday.  They ran for a few days and then they were turned off.  Now the contractor is knocking holes in the stone retaining wall where the water falls from the fountains above.



So they were just one occasion temporary fountains? I have never heard of that before. Since they were already built, why not just leave them in place? What a waste.
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