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Oh, New Orleans. So easy to photograph, so hard to photograph well.
A few members of my family and I took a day trip to New Orleans yesterday to eat and do a little shopping. As we threaded our way to Stanley on Jackson Square I was a little overwhelmed by the number of camera lenses swinging this way and that. It is such a photogenic city, like a beauty queen mugging on a stage, that you can’t help but point your camera at just about everything. This also means that just about every decent shot of the city that can be taken, has been taken. This is kind of a dispiriting realization.
But, for all of its beauty and charm, you can’t help but feeling like the whole place is hamming it up for the camera. Of course, this is less true when you get away from the French Quarter, but near the center of Royal or Chartres the number of eager photographers seems to outpace the possible subjects. Such is the lot of an ancient and moldering city in our young and standardized country. I don’t mean to whine, any photographer should consider themselves lucky to have such a lush subject. I am only pointing out that as I press the shutter down on my camera I do wonder if the world needs another photo of a Lucky Dog cart. But, you really can’t help taking pictures of the place.
All that said, I do love New Orleans. For all of its warts, it is wholly unique in the United States. It is a treat to show it off to people who are unfamiliar with its sounds, smells, sights and tastes. And even if it may be putting up a front for us visitors, there is no place quite like it. And so I present to you a few photos of some all too familiar sights. Not because they reveal anything about the city, but because no matter how many pictures get taken of our own, modern Atlantis, there will always be something new about New Orleans.