Airline voucher in hand, need destination!

Discussion in 'Geographic Location' started by f/stopblues, Jul 24, 2014.

  1. f/stopblues

    f/stopblues Member

    Messages:
    204
    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2005
    Location:
    Kansas City,
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I have a Southwest voucher for a modest sum and will be flying out of Kansas City in September. I'll be staying Friday and Saturday night and it'll just be myself, my Rolleiflex, and my Speed Graphic.

    Here's my short list so far: Memphis, Nashville, New Orleans, Detroit.

    What would be most fun to wander and shoot for a couple days? I like a little grit in a city and don't typically shoot the pretty flowers and buildings. Also, I won't have a car, so walkability and public transport is a consideration.

    I know this is highly subjective, but I'm curious what thoughts you all have.

    Thanks!
     
  2. Two23

    Two23 Member

    Messages:
    356
    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2010
    Location:
    South Dakota
    Shooter:
    4x5 Format
    Easy answer. Chicago. It's made for a Rolleiflex. Go ask Vivian Meier, at her exhibit in the Washington Library. Here's a few shots I did with a vintage Leica IIIc a couple of months ago.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M3JEY6SiFKA


    Kent in SD
     
  3. winger

    winger Subscriber

    Messages:
    2,910
    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2005
    Location:
    southwest PA
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Of the four you mention, I've only been to New Orleans. It does have some nice grit, as well as flowers with wrought iron, etc…
    If I had spare time in September, I'd go to New England. For walkability and history, Boston is fantastic. The weather can be pretty good then, too (though it isn't predictable more than two days out). Farther north, trees will be turning, but being carless will be more difficult.
     
  4. wy2l

    wy2l Member

    Messages:
    150
    Joined:
    Feb 21, 2006
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    My own opinion: Avoid Detroit.
    (Have you considered beautiful Bakersfield, California?)

    All kidding aside, I'd go to Boston or the Maine coast.

    Kris
     
  5. ParkerSmithPhoto

    ParkerSmithPhoto Subscriber

    Messages:
    1,365
    Joined:
    Jan 16, 2010
    Location:
    Atlanta, GA
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    Not much to see in Memphis, trust me. The downtown is about two blocks long. Nashville is okay but a bit spread out.

    I have a life long love of Chicago. It has to be one of the most photogenic cities in America. The people, the places. It's the best.

    One word of advice: you'll get so much more work done if you just take the Rolleiflex. Lugging around a Speed Graphic on the off chance you might use it is a waste of time. Unless, of course, that's the camera with which you see well and make your best work. I'd take medium format and as many rolls as I could carry.
     
  6. Barry S

    Barry S Member

    Messages:
    1,347
    Joined:
    Jan 28, 2007
    Location:
    DC Metro
    Shooter:
    Large Format
    Having been to all the cities you mentioned, New Orleans is best if you don't have a car. Even so, it's still not easy to get around, but there are nice walkable areas. The other cities are unworkable without a car. The Chicago suggestion is worth considering--you can easily get around without a car, and the photographic possibilities are endless.
     
  7. TheFlyingCamera

    TheFlyingCamera Membership Council Council

    Messages:
    9,521
    Joined:
    May 24, 2005
    Location:
    Washington DC
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I'd second Barry's vote - Chi-town or Nawlins. Chicago is probably the most public-transit friendly of the bunch, but New Orleans has a unique flavor all its own.
     
  8. momus

    momus Member

    Messages:
    2,710
    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2009
    Location:
    Lower Earth
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    New Orleans. I've been to all the places you mentioned (used to live in N.O.) and it's not even close! Just stick to the Quarter, The Garden District, and the cemeteries and you will get hundreds of one of a kind photographs. The roast beef po boys are great at Charlies in the Quarter (bread is all wrong, but the sandwich is wonderful), and the gumbo and bread pudding are perfect at ACME, also in the quarter. Go early to avoid a big line. Avoid Mother's, which has gone downhill. Ride the river boats, hear some great jazz at Snug Harbor, listen to the blues most everywhere, ride the street cars....how you gonna beat that? But if you want safe and boring, don't come. If you don't have a sense of the absurd and the wild, don't come either.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 24, 2014
  9. momus

    momus Member

    Messages:
    2,710
    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2009
    Location:
    Lower Earth
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    Actually, unless you're used to the heat, July in New Orleans can be overwhelming. Forgot about that.
     
  10. TheFlyingCamera

    TheFlyingCamera Membership Council Council

    Messages:
    9,521
    Joined:
    May 24, 2005
    Location:
    Washington DC
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    An alternative option to consider - come to Washington DC. It's less sauna-like than New Orleans, is very accessible via public transit, and has lots of unique and characterful neighborhoods to explore without putting life and limb at risk.
     
  11. RattyMouse

    RattyMouse Subscriber

    Messages:
    3,535
    Joined:
    Oct 18, 2011
    Location:
    Ann Arbor, Mi
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Nice thread....i'm home sick now as my home the past 42 years before moving to China was Chicago.
     
  12. ParkerSmithPhoto

    ParkerSmithPhoto Subscriber

    Messages:
    1,365
    Joined:
    Jan 16, 2010
    Location:
    Atlanta, GA
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    Suffocating would be a good word to describe it!
     
  13. Chris Lange

    Chris Lange Member

    Messages:
    780
    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2009
    Location:
    NY
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    NYC. Far out in brooklyn, and around the old navy yards can be amazing. Harlem has some incredible sight lines with row houses that ooze pre-war character. Avoid midtown/ the mall of williamsburg, and you'll be fine, regarding boring bullshit tourism subject matter.
     
  14. wiltw

    wiltw Subscriber

    Messages:
    1,525
    Joined:
    Oct 4, 2008
    Location:
    SF Bay area
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    My wife and I went to DC back around 2008 (I think). Early July, the heat & humidity was not oppressive that year. Everywhere we'd go, folks would ask "Where are you (visiting) from?" We would reply "From the SF Bay area"...and we would immediately be THANKED by the natives for bringing some of our weather with us, because DC was ordinarily so miserable in most years about that time!
     
  15. TheFlyingCamera

    TheFlyingCamera Membership Council Council

    Messages:
    9,521
    Joined:
    May 24, 2005
    Location:
    Washington DC
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    We're in the middle of another temperate July, relatively speaking. AUGUST, on the other hand, is almost always universally a swampy armpit, no matter how many San Franciscans visit.
     
  16. f/stopblues

    f/stopblues Member

    Messages:
    204
    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2005
    Location:
    Kansas City,
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Thanks for all the replies! That Chicago suggestion is tempting the more I think of it, and I hadn't considered non-Manhattan NYC. I've only visited with friends/family and they all like to stick to the guide book.. ugh. Those mentions of New Orleans food are speaking to my empty stomach right now. And Boston is a total unknown to me so I'll have to investigate.

    I was actually out in D.C. just last week and loved what I was able to see! Too bad work got in the way of all my fun except for a couple quick jaunts. It's on my revisit list for sure.

    All in all, I think my thread to narrow things down has done the opposite. You guys are so helpful! :D
     
  17. TheFlyingCamera

    TheFlyingCamera Membership Council Council

    Messages:
    9,521
    Joined:
    May 24, 2005
    Location:
    Washington DC
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    The next time you're coming DC way, give me a shout and I'll be happy to play tour guide. I know the off-the-beaten-track stuff and can take you into places you wouldn't know about from guidebooks. Including some really good (and cheap) ethnic food.
     
  18. Two23

    Two23 Member

    Messages:
    356
    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2010
    Location:
    South Dakota
    Shooter:
    4x5 Format
    Just to throw another wrench into it, I'll suggest Toronto. It will be nice and cool there, and there is decent transportation. Not as good as Chicago or NYC, but decent enough for a few days. Going to Toronto is like being in a foreign country!


    Kent in SD
     
  19. TheFlyingCamera

    TheFlyingCamera Membership Council Council

    Messages:
    9,521
    Joined:
    May 24, 2005
    Location:
    Washington DC
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    You might want to re-think the assessment of Toronto as being cool - I was there the last weekend in June and it was around 95F every day.
     
  20. bdial

    bdial Subscriber

    Messages:
    5,434
    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2005
    Location:
    NE U.S.
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Boston would be a good choice for walkability and subject matter variety there are lots of transportation choices as well, and the airport is very close.
    Hotels are a little expensive, but not NY expensive.
    A possibility no one has mentioned so far would be Indianapolis. The downtown area is very walkable, though public transport is not so hot, getting into town from the airport and back would be easy enough.
     
  21. RattyMouse

    RattyMouse Subscriber

    Messages:
    3,535
    Joined:
    Oct 18, 2011
    Location:
    Ann Arbor, Mi
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I can set you up with all the Chicago info you want. That city was my home for 42 years. Contact me off line if interested.
     
  22. rdg

    rdg Member

    Messages:
    23
    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2014
    Location:
    Hamilton ON
    Shooter:
    Multi Format

    Today was in the mid 20'sC so it has cooled down from the end of June. It is a little on the cool side for this time of the year however but should be nice around September. We will not likely have fall colours yet, it is too early, but to enjoy them you are likely going to want to get out of the city anyways and that will require a car, which you will not have.

    Richard
     
  23. f/stopblues

    f/stopblues Member

    Messages:
    204
    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2005
    Location:
    Kansas City,
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Southwest doesn't fly to our neighbors in the north. It is a place I'd like to see at some point, though!

    Again, thanks for all the suggestions. My little weekend excursion keeps growing in my mind and it's going to end up some epic adventure. One thing I've come to realize is that we're pretty spoiled when it comes to having a big variety of accessible destinations.