Items tagged with 'photos'

Santa Speedo Sprint 2014 photos

albany santa speedo sprint 2014

Saturday's weather was miserable -- cold, rainy, the kind of day when snow might have actually been more welcome.

But there were still plenty of smiles and laughing and cheering at the Santa Speedo Sprint on Lark Street. It was the 9th year for the event organized by by the Albany Society for the Advancement of Philanthropy as fundraiser for the Albany Damien Center and the HIV/AIDS program at the Albany Medical Center. This year's sprint raised $7,000.

It was great to see so many people out there again, having fun and raising money.

Here are a bunch of photos from this year's sprint...

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The snowflake photographer: Holly Greene

Rare mix of Stellar Dendrite and Sectored Plates.jpg

"We always look for big, giant, flashy things to make us happy, and sometimes it's the small things -- the tiniest beauty."

Holly Greene was having a rough day.

She had been out grocery shopping and was lugging her packages home, trudging back and forth from the car to the house. In the snow. She was tired and frustrated. Then something happened that changed not only her day, but her art, and, a little bit, her world view.

Holly caught a glimpse of a snowflake that had landed on her jacket. A tiny, perfect snowflake.

"It was just so perfectly formed," she says, "that it stopped me in my tracks."

The Saratoga Springs-based photographer grabbed her camera and focused in on it the best she could. The result was the first of many photos for the artist and wedding photographer who now bills herself as The Snowflake Photographer.

Holly tore herself away from last week's November snowstorm to talk about the art, science, and philosophy of the snowflake.

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Visions of a Capital Region after us


From John Bulmer's Reclaimed series.

By Lauren Hittinger

Have you ever wondered what the Capital Region would look like if everyone just disappeared? Whether it was from zombie apocalypse or mass exodus, the landscape would certainly change if we weren't around to mold and maintain it.

Photographer John Bulmer has taken this idea and turned it into two series of remarkable of photo illustrations. His Reclaimed series imagines an abandoned Capital Region landscape after a catastrophic situation. The Dark City series is a little more peaceful, imagining how our region would look at night without artificial light from sources such as buildings and streetlights.

The images in both series are eerily believable.

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The Meade Brothers' daguerreian gallery

meade brothers

The Brothers Meade, Charles (left) and Henry.

Photography is so ubiquitous now -- almost everyone carries around some sort of camera in their pocket -- that it's a bit difficult to imagine a time when it was a new and rare. That to be a photographer was to be on the avant garde of art and technology.

As it happens, two of the earliest famous photographers were from Albany: Henry and Charles Meade.

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Looking up State Street, almost a century ago

state street albany 1917 via Albany Institute cropped

An old view that was once new.

The Albany Institute shared this photo on Twitter this week -- it's a look up State Street in Albany in 1917, from the Delaware & Hudson Railroad Building. (The institute has a bunch of photos from its collection online.)

We always love to gawk at old photos and this one's no different. Three things about it:

+ Construction of the D&H building (now the SUNY central administration building) spanned from 1914 to 1915. So, in some sense, this view had only existed for about two years when the photo was taken. Because before that, there wasn't a tower from which to take the photo.

+ Look down toward the bottom of the photo, on the left side, near where State Street meets Broadway. See that awning and the restaurant sign? That appears to be right where the awning for Jack's is today. Jack's didn't move to that spot until 1937, but it looks like there was a restaurant there even at the time of this photo.

+ The streetcar tracks are visible on the roads in the photo, and there's a horse-drawn cart on Broadway. But also look closely along the sides of State Street -- yep, cars. (The Model T was about a decade old at this point.) And they're parking along State Street much in the same way they still are almost a century later.

There's a large-format, uncropped version of the photo after the jump.

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A view from above, back then

aerial photo albany 1948 before ESP

We were poking around the online collections from the State Library this afternoon looking for something else when we came across this aerial photograph of Albany before the Empire State Plaza was built. It's from 1948. It made us think of the 1910 map overlay of Albany -- then over now -- that B sent along earlier this week, and some of the comments.

Anyway, there are three more photos:
+ From behind the Smith building
+ Looking north from the South End
+ And another, wider shot also from the South End -- in this one you can really see what would become the ESP's footprint (look for the Smith Building and the the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception).

photo: New York State Archives, Aerial photographic prints and negatives of New York State sites, 1941-1957


The Sage Colleges Library shared this photo the other day and it made us smile. It's from a 1937 archery class at Russell Sage College.

The photo is from a collection of Sage archival photos maintained online by the New York Heritage Project. A few more examples: a photo from a circa 1940 auto mechanics class, and working the in the lab during the 1920s.

We're a little disappointed our college education didn't include archery.

Whoosh... by a nose

photo finish Travers 2013

We're always a sucker for the photo finish pics from the Track. The photos make the horses look like they're traveling in warp or something. Like, whoosh! (Here's a bit about how they're taken.)

The photo above is from the finish of the Travers this past Saturday. Will Take Charge just nosed out Moreno for the win.

Speaking of things that make our heads warp a little bit: wrapping our them around the amount of money bet on the races. NYRA reported that the "all sources handle" -- the total amount bet, wherever people were placing bets -- was $41,363,760 for the Travers Day races at the Saratoga Race Course. That was up 13 percent over last year's total. The on-track handle -- the amount bet by the 47,597 people actually at the Track: $9,672,249.

Yep, the Saratoga Race Course advertises on AOA.

photo: NYRA

A collection of moments from Saratoga

elario photography saratoga race course sunrise

Over at the Elario Photography blog they've posted a beautiful photoset of shots from the Saratoga Race Course by "Big Joe" Elario, taken over the last three years. The set includes a lot of good moments.

Browsing through the photos is like a 3-minute trip to the Track.

Today's moment of summer

central ave sunset 2013-06-16 iessi

The technical term: crepuscular rays, from a Latin word for twilight.

Jessica captured this sunset photo on Central Ave in Albany Tuesday.

We're pretty sure we hear a choir singing when we look at this image.

In the the park with the tulips

Tulip Festival 2013 panorama clip

Check it out: An aerial view of the tulip beds near the Moses statue in Washington Park. The image above is just a section of the photo. We've also embedded a large, zoomable version of the whole photo.

The photo was taken by Robert Eastman. His company -- Ground Aerial -- takes low-altitude aerial images using a 60-foot extendable mast topped with camera equipment. As he said to us in an email today: "[W]e were in Albany on Tuesday working on a project. Since the weather forecast for this weekend doesn't look so great, I thought I'd stop by Washington Park and enjoy the tulips on a nice sunny day. I couldn't rest breaking out the equipment and getting a panoramic shot from the air."

(Thanks, Robert!)

Night trains

night train in Schaghticoke by william gill

Schaghticoke, July 2012.

This Friday as part of Troy Night Out local photographer William Gill will be at Anchor No. 5 talking about his collection of train photos taken at night -- and how he does it. William explains in an email:

A few years ago, Troy resident Jim Shaughnessy released a new railroad photography book and I saw his night photographs from the 1950s for the first time. Very inspiring work. So much so that I went out and started shooting at night. The first photos were pretty terrible but they got much better quickly. Soon, I started wandering the capital region (and beyond), doing large lighting setups along the tracks, capturing some of our unique scenery and built environment. Working at night allows me to capture images from the half the day that few see and also to photograph some scenes that would be difficult to under sunlight.
The process is unbelievably slow, which is as much a reaction to the complaints about digital photography and the ubiquity of cameras as it is anything else - if everyone has a camera, I want to make images that few others would try to make. In the end, slowing down the photography has been very rewarding - while many chase trains from their car and shoot photos from a few, well-worn locations, I'm able to spend all night setting up in hard to reach locations. ...if I'm only going to get one shot in a night, why not spend an hour paddling a canoe full of lighting gear to a remote location?

His website includes a bunch of photos, along with backstories and some of the unusual setups he uses.

photo: William Gill


skate traces on Buckingham Pond

For no other reason than we like the way they look: photos of the traces recently left by ice skates on Albany's Buckingham Pond.

Here's a set of five in large format.

Earlier on AOA: Tiny, frozen bubbles

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Winter in Schenectady, then

ice skaters Schenectady Central Park 1916 Grems-Doolittle Collection

Above is a 1916 photo of ice skaters in Schenectady's Central Park. Make sure to check out the large version. The picture makes us smile -- the big crowd of people all out on the the frozen lake, like it was the place to be that day.

The photo is from a collection at the Grems-Doolittle Library and Archives at the Schenectady County Historical Society. The library also has a blog, which includes a handful of other interesting winter-time Schenectady photos -- like one showing harness racing on a frozen Erie Canal.

The blog is good -- we got sucked into it for longer than we'd like to admit yesterday. It includes some great historical materials. Definitely worth a look.

Researching old houses
Speaking of the Schenectady County Historical Society: The Grems-Doolittle Library is offering a workshop on researching the story of old houses on February 16 from 2-4 pm. Blurbage: "Join us and discover the resources in our library available for researching the history of your home, neighborhood, and the people who lived there. This workshop will also include time to conduct research in the library." The workshop is $5. Contact librarian Melissa Tacke for more info -- 374-0263, or librarian |at| schist |dot| org.

photo: Grems-Doolittle Library Photograph Collection

From the hillside in Troy, in winter

787 from RPI winter venkata

Venkata sent along this photo after a recent snowfall -- it's from the 9th floor of a building at RPI. We like the streaks formed by the traffic on 787 Route 7 as it heads off into the background.

We're a bit envious of the view from his office.

Here's a large-format version, along with one more photo.

(Thanks, Venkata)

Santa Speedo Sprint 2012 photos

santa speedo sprint 2012 before start

It's important to stretch your body suit before sprinting.

The 2012 Santa Speedo Sprint raced down Lark Street Saturday.

As in years past, it was another fun time. Lots of smiles. And the Albany Society for the Advance of Philanthropy raised a lot of money for the Albany Damien Center and the AIDS/HIV programs at Albany Medical Center -- $17,500.

Here are a whole bunch of photos from this year's sprint...

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Troy Victorian Stroll 2012 photos

Troy Victorian Stroll balloon man

And the balloon man was there again.

It was fun walking around the Victorian Stroll in Troy Sunday. Lots of strollers (both types), people in Victoriana, street performers, decorated windows.

One of the good things about the stroll is the way it highlights downtown Troy's assets -- the walkable, compact grid; the beautiful architecture; the interesting shop spaces.

Here are a bunch of photos from the afternoon...

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The Empire State Plaza, from above

If ever you've wondered: "What would it be like to fly a remote controlled plane with a an HD camera near the ESP?" -- wonder no longer.

The embedded clip above was posted on YouTube this past February by user IloveSPIDERZ. The plane takes off in Lincoln Park, and fights what appears to some very strong wind (motion sickness!) while flying near the south end of the plaza. It's a long clip, but you can get a pretty good sense of it from a minute or two.

(Thanks, Carl)

Tangentially, elsewhere: If I Fly a UAV Over My Neighbor's House, Is It Trespassing? [The Atlantic]

Color Me Rad photos

color me rad albany 2012 sebastien barre

When we mentioned the Color Me Rad 5k at the Altamont Fairgrounds awhile back, it looked like it could be fun. It also looked like it could be messy. It appears to have been both!

Sebastien's posted a bunch of photos from the this past weekend's race (full photo set). That's one of them above.

Lots of technicolor smiles. (Probably less for the traffic.) [@MaryRozak]

photo: Sebastien Barre

Please don't set your dorm room on fire

dorm room fire demo AFD

Some things pretty much go without saying, so if you're going to say something about them, you might as well go big.

The Albany Fire Department set a simulated dorm room on fire at the Albany College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences on Thursday to demonstrate how quickly a fire can engulf a room. The answer -- in case it's on a test -- is: fast, about a minute. [YNN]

Amy's posted a photoset from the demonstration.

(Thanks, Amy)

photo: Amy Wilson

Capturing the Adirondacks

seneca ray stoddard canoe nysm

"The Way it Looks from the Stern Seat"

An exhibit of work by early 1900s Adirondack photographer Seneca Ray Stoddard opened Friday at the State Museum. Blurbage:

Seneca Ray Stoddard: Capturing the Adirondacks is open through February 24, 2013 in Crossroads Gallery. It includes over 100 of Stoddard's photographs, an Adirondack guideboat, freight boat, camera, copies of Stoddard's books and several of his paintings. There also are several Stoddard photos of the Statue of Liberty and Liberty Island. These and other items come from the State Museum's collection of more than 500 Stoddard prints and also from the collections of the New York State Library and the Chapman Historical Museum in Glens Falls.

The museum says it's the first time it's exhibited these photos from its collection. It's also created a mini-site online to highlight the photos -- definitely worth a look.

Stoddard himself is an interesting story. He was born in Wilton in 1844, and started his career as an ornamental painter at a railroad car factory in Green Island. Stoddard was one of the first people to photograph the Adirondacks, using a method that sounds like a tremendous hassle. His photos and guidebooks played a big part in making the Adirondacks a tourist destination.

It's interesting to us think about what motivates someone to basically drag an entire dark room through the Adirondacks. It makes sense. There's something about photographing a place and telling other people you were there that's a very strong draw -- even today. Facebook, Flickr, and Instagram are full of place photos. It's just a lot easier now.

We wonder what he would have done with an iPhone.

photo: Seneca Ray Stoddard via New York State Museum

Look out, Loudonville!

cloud face 2012-05-16 jessica macelli

He Who Shall Not Be Named?

Check out this photo Jessica sent along from Wednesday's storm.

She emails: "I took this photo before the storm tonight outside of our home in Loudonville. Didn't notice the face in the clouds until a little later. ... I posted it on my Facebook and instagram and now I can't believe I didn't take the picture because of the demon cloud! It is super creepy."

Yikes! It's like Voldemort looking down on Loudonville, or something.

Albany Rural Cemetery, after dark

ARC Martin Daley moon behind cross.jpg

ARC, after dark

By Martin Daley

soapbox badgeI have a strong phobia of death.

Like, a wake-up-in-the-middle-of-the night-in-a-cold-sweat kind of fear. The kind of fear I sometimes just need to talk my way through.

I simply can't fathom not existing. It scares the heck out of me.

Why then, you might ask, would someone with this terrible, gripping fear of the great beyond be wandering around Albany Rural Cemetery in the middle of the night?

It was all about the photos.

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Like sitting on the handle bars

Check it out: Rob Gierthy emailed us with a video he created of commute home via bike:

I have a small video camera attached to my bike that I record my commutes with. This past Monday was such a surprisingly nice day that I thought I would share it and uploaded the video to YouTube. It documents a slow ride up the sidewalk on Madison (I know I shouldn't be on the sidewalk, but the traffic is so congested there that it seemed safer), down and across Swan to Hudson, and then through Washington Park. It might not be that exciting but for me it is a celebration of the arrival of spring.

There's a surprising zen quality about watching the video. And the images (cinematography? biketography?) are beautiful in spots -- the wide angle lens makes the sky look huge.

A little more from Rob about his commute

I've been commuting by bicycle the two miles to my job at the Empire State Plaza for almost a year now. My initial plan was to keep going until it got too cold and then stop, but a combination of a mild winter and my stubbornness kept that from happening. Covered in wool from head to toe during those cold months I forgot how enjoyable biking actually is. Now that it is suddenly warm enough that I can bike in shorts and sandals it is a revelation. No longer is it a mental and physical struggle to fight the wind and cold. Instead it is fun and liberating. The warm breeze feels great and actually seeing people out reminds me that I don't live in a barren lifeless wasteland.

Here are more of Rob's commutes. A snow-filled commute video is embedded after the jump -- it's speeded up, so it feels a bit like a skeleton run.

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St. Patrick's Day 2012 photos

St Patricks Day 2012 parade leprechaun skateboard sebastien barre

It was an excellent weekend for parading.

Sebastien's sent along a few photos from the St. Patrick's Day parade in Albany. (Yes, in black-and-white -- he was feeling a bit contrarian.) Be sure to check out his entire set.

A few other sets worth a look:

+ MIKECNY's set has a lot of good parade photos.

+ And Bennett documented the day a bit differently.

North Albany: After the jump, video from North Albany parade by YouTube user BillyOrbit...

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Scenes from the last day at the Miss Albany

last day at Miss Albany

A full house on the last day.

As you well know, the Miss Albany Diner closed last Friday. Photographer Julia Zave was there to document the final day of the local institution. And she was nice enough to share a handful of her photos with us. They're in large format after the jump.

A few of Julia's photos accompanied an article in Metroland this week by Amy Halloran about the closing of the diner. You should check it out -- Amy talked with owners Jane Brown and her son Bill about what they're planning to do next (one of those things: a Miss Albany cookbook).

By the way: You might know Julia from her concert photography. She also recently started doing lifestyle photography for clients.

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Conversations with photographers

black birds gray sky justin higginsThis is good: Sebastien has started a series of conversations with local photographers.

The first person up is Justin Higgins, who lives in Schenectady. We don't think we've encountered his work before, but we're glad to know it now. And we enjoyed Sebastien's conversation with Justin about art, technique, and having a personal style.

We're looking forward to reading more.

photo: Justin Higgins

Memorable photos from 2011

Thumbnail image for irene_flooding_schenectady_0234.jpg

Some were from scenes that seemed unreal.

While filing away 2011, we thought it'd be interesting to collect some of our favorite photos from the last year of AOA.

Some of the photos are good pictures, some evoked memories (good and bad), and some are just fun.

Thank you to everyone who sent along photos over the past year. We appreciate it.

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Santa Speedo Sprint 2011 photos

santa speedo sprint 2011 crowd

They're running for charity. And to stay warm.

The Santa Speedo Sprint is one of the most fun events of each year. And this weekend was no exception. It was great to see so many people smiling, laughing, and cheering others on.

There's a big bunch of photos from this year's sprint after the jump...

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Victorian Stroll 2011 photos

troy victorian stroll 2011 sebastien


Sebastien has posted a fun photoset from the Victorian Stroll in Troy on Sunday.

Here's another photoset from the stroll by Vic Christopher.

And one of Paul's photos resulted in a great joke: "Hipster Bichon enjoyed Troy before it was cool."

photo: Sebastien Barre

Good spots for photographing sunsets?

susnset albany nanotech 2011-11

We snapped this pic at Albany NanoTech this week. It was kind of beautiful watching the just-setting sun reflect off all that glass.

MariaG asks via a comment:

Hi, I recently moved back to Albany and I love photographing sunsets...where are some good spots in the area? Thanks so much in advance.

Have a suggestion for Maria? Please share!

John Crispin's Willard suitcase project

This is remarkable: photographer John Crispin is documenting suitcases -- and their contents -- from a long-closed state mental facility that have been preserved at the State Museum. He explains on his Kickstarter page:

In 1995, the New York State Museum was moving items out of the Willard Psychiatric Center in Willard, NY which was being closed by the State Office of Mental Health. It would eventually become a state-run drug rehabilitation center. Craig Williams and his staff became aware of an attic full of suitcases in the pathology lab building. The cases were put into storage when their owners were admitted to Willard sometime between 1910 and the 1960s. And since the facility was set up to help people with chronic mental illness, these folks never left. An exhibit of a small selection of the cases was produced by the Museum and was on display in Albany in 2003. It was very moving to read the stories of these people, and to see objects from their lives before they became residents of Willard.
I have been given the incredible opportunity to photograph these cases and their contents. To me, they open a small window into the lives of some of the people who lived at the facility.

He explains more in the video embedded above. His Kickstarter project has already reached its funding goal -- and then some.

Crispin has been posting some of the images from this project on a blog. The collections of items are beautiful in a way.

Crispin says on Kickstarter the State Museum has more than 400 suitcases in its collection. A handful of them were on display at the museum in 2004, and later became a traveling exhibit (exhibit website). There was also a book that came out of the exhibit, The Lives They Left Behind: Suitcases from a State Hospital Attic . [Village Voice] [USA Today]

(Thanks, Jess!)

Small Batch Editions

grossingers indoor pool sebastien barre

"Poolside" by Sebastien Barre, one of the first prints available through Small Batch Editions.

Worth a look: Small Batch Editions, a startup business from local curator Melissa Stafford, which is aiming to put together new art buyers with up-and-coming photographers. As Melissa explained in an email:

The idea is something that has been building in my mind for at least 3 years now. In the course of working at the gallery in Hudson I often met a lot of people who fell in love with a photograph or painting, but were unable to afford it. I also met a lot of artists struggling to sell their work. Considering the economy these days and how limited most budgets are, I wanted to create an opportunity for both artists and buyers to have a meaningful exchange; by publishing special limited edition prints at more affordable prices I hope to grow the market for unrepresented photographers, increasing their visibility. At the same time, we as collectors get to discover new and exciting work and support the artists we love.

The initial lineup of photographers includes some local names you might recognize: Joe Putrock, Sebastien Barre, Holly Northrop.

Small Batch Editions hasn't officially launched yet. Melissa is currently running a Kickstarter campaign to raise money to cover some of the initial costs. Contributors will be able to pre-order prints and be eligible for other rewards. (And, as with all Kickstarter campaigns, the money is refunded if the goal isn't met.)

You might recognize Melissa's name from Carrie Haddad Photographs in Hudson, where she was the gallery's first director. Here's a little bit more about what prompted her to start Small Batch Editions...

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Inside St. Joseph's Academy

st josephs academy albany barn

A classroom, in a former life.

A few weeks ago we talked with Jeff Mirel from the Albany Barn about the plan to turn the old St. Joseph's Academy in Albany into a live/work arts facility.

Recently, Sebastien, Paul and Darren were invited to photograph the inside of the building. Sebastien's put together a good post about the photo trip. And Darren's photos are on Flickr. (The trio also recently had a show at the Albany Barn's Stage 1 space.)

Sebastien's post also includes a shoutout to Carl and Akum about the history of the building.

photo: Sebastien Barre

Warrior Dash photos 2011

warrior dash 2011 sebastien fire jump


This is fun: Sebastien was at the Warrior Dash at Windham Mountain this past weekend and has a great post and photoset from the race/obstacle course/mud bath.

A few more photos after the jump. But definitely go check out the whole set.

Warriors! Jen and Silvia both braved the course this year. Jen says the obstacles were a lot harder this year. And Silvia had a blast -- and ended up inventorying her injuries

Update! Diana also ran the course this year and took her camera along.

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"Then & Now" at Albany Center Gallery

thom o'connor printOpening today at Albany Center Gallery: "Then & Now (Small Prints)" by Thom O'Connor.

The artist, a former UAlbany professor, is a photographer and accomplished print maker. From the blurbage (link added):

Thom O'Connor's work has been consistently praised and highly valued for its construction and thoughtfulness throughout his career. O'Connor is recognized internationally as a master of printmaking, and for his innovation and skill with new techniques. In an Albany Times Union article, author William Jaeger explains, "O'Connor's prints survive because they have unusual visual sensitivity, [and] show extraordinary craft. There is an undercurrent of drama that suggests, without delineation, a very human dimension to the works."

The show opens today and runs through September 10. There's a reception on August 12 at 5 pm.

Look for this Friday: "Forgive Our Trespasses," an exhibit opening this Friday at the Albany Barn, of urban exploration photos by Sebastien Barre, Paul Gallo and Darren Ketchum. There's a reception with the artists starting at 5 pm.

image: Thom O'Connor

Rainbow over Lark Street

lark and madison rainbow

Because everyone loves a big rainbow -- here it is in large format.

Jess sent along this rainbow pic:

Spotted the most lovely rainbow yesterday evening while at happy hour at the Lionheart!

A happy hour special.

photo: Jessica Pasko

Capital Pride parade photos 2011

capital pride parade 2011

The annual Capital Pride parade was this past weekend in Albany.

Sebastien was nice enough to share some photos from the event -- a few more are after the jump. Be sure to check out the whole photoset. It includes a lot of good photos.

And don't miss Leigh's Soapbox post about why Pride is one of her favorite local festivals.

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Photo Regional at Albany Center Gallery

ACG photo regional 2011 posterThe 33rd annual Photo Regional exhibit opens this Friday at the Albany Center Gallery in downtown Albany. There's a reception from 5-9 pm as part of First Friday. From the blurbage:

From nearly 500 submissions―a near record―35 images created by 30 artists comprise the exhibit. Artists selected include Jeffrey Altman, Steven Rolf Kroeger, Mark McCarthy, Jenny McShan, Linda Morrell, Anthony Salamone and Dave Waite.
It was curated by Ian Berry, of the Tang Teaching Museum and Melissa Stafford from Carrie Haddad Photographs Gallery in Hudson. Tim Kane, independent arts journalist, was associate curator.
The Photo Regional remains a mainstay of the local photography scene as a source highlighting the region's diversity in the medium. Started in response to the lack of venues staging exhibitions with photography as fine art, the rotating and yearly survey provides a snapshot on recent activity in the field within a 100-mile radius of Albany.

The exhibit runs through July 16 at ACG. There's also an awards ceremony June 11.

Lots no longer vacant

vacant lot radix center goats

The site of the Radix Center's greenhouse. There's something great about seeing the Corning Tower in the background and goats in the foreground.

Sebastien has an excellent post about the recent work at multiple sites for the Vacant Lot Project in Albany's South End. He and Bennett have been documenting the project as it moves along. As Sebastien writes of this most recent photoset:

I came back with a lot of pictures, which I trimmed down to a count of 70. Here's hoping that some of the photographs on this page will inspire you to get involved in this neighborhood, or your own. This is only a glimpse at the great work a community can get done when they came together.

Here's a link to Bennett's photoset from the day.

The Vacant Lot Project is a cool idea -- it's turning sites that could be seen as liabilities into neighborhood assets. And it's a great to see people working to make a neighborhood a better place.

Earlier on AOA: The Grand Street Vacant Lot Project

photo: Sebastien B

A tour of North Central

north central rowhouses

Uptown Troy.

Check it out: the Kunstlercast -- the podcast with James Howard Kunstler and Duncan Crary -- featured a walking tour of Troy's North Central neighborhood last week. From the description:

In this enhanced podcast, JHK & Duncan explore North Central Troy, NY with Billie-Jean Greene, a KunstlerCast listener who recently purchased a home in this area. This once wealthy neighborhood on the Hudson River has suffered from urban blight for many years. But a group of neighbors, known as The Uptown Initiative, are committed to helping turn their neighborhood around. Billie-Jean leads this tour and introduces us to some of the neighborhood residents, including a bed & breakfast owner, another homeowner, and some urban chickens named Ruby and June. Also along the route is a Hells Angels clubhouse.

Accompanying the podcast is an interesting photoset by Neil Grabowsky of Through the Lens Studios. It peeks into homes and includes some great detail.

Duncan's matched the audio up with the photos so you can listen/watch them together.

A few of Neil's photos are after the jump, but take a moment and check out the whole set.

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Tulip Fest 2011 photos

Bennett and Sebastien sent along nice photo sets from the Tulip Festival.

A handful of photos from the sets are after the jump. Re-live the flowers, the music, the lassos...

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St. Patrick's Day parade 2011

st patrick's day parade 2011 band

This photo looks even better in large format.

The photo above is from a nice photoset by Sebastien from the St. Patrick's Day parade in Albany over the weekend. A few more are after the jump -- and, of course, the photoset linked above has many more.

Also: Flicker user MIKECNY has also posted a parade set -- it includes some good people shots.

(Thanks, Sebastien!)

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An icy walk at dusk

Ice Walk Dusk

By Liz Clancy Lerner

I may have cursed the frozen rain as it fell Sunday night, and the snow as it covered the ground yesterday morning, but once the sun came out I was praising the beauty of what was left behind.

I took a walk along the Mohawk-Hudson Bike-Hike trail and the Mohawk River State Park in Niskayuna to photograph the remnants of our recent wintry mix.

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Photographer Mark McCarty

Mark McCarty Self

Mark in front of his polaroid wall at his studio in Troy.

By Liz Clancy Lerner

Troy-based photographer Mark McCarty captures the details that are often photoshopped out of today's images: wrinkles, blemishes and scars included.

"I have a real problem with the way skin is dealt with these days... where it gets all plastic and perfect -- I don't like it."

Flesh has been a common theme in his photography.

Two of his projects look at that theme in very different ways: one is with Alzheimers patients at the Marjorie Doyle Rockwell Center in Cohoes, the other is his work with colon cancer survivors for an annual "Colondar", which features the scars of those survivors.

"Everyone in the world goes through something that scars them whether it's visible or not, and I think photography is a good medium for exploring that."

I spoke with Mark recently about how he got involved with these projects, their affect on the subjects -- and the effect on him. (Also: a handful of his photos.)

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Cold! Cold! Cold!

grafton lakes winterfest 2011 sebastien

The high that day: 20. Beach weather it was not.

Here are some fun photosets by Sebastien and The Exile from the recent Winterfest at Grafton Lakes. And here's a bonus set by Flickr user dividedsky319.

The day includes a "polar plunge" into a pool carved out of the frozen lake -- there are some great faces when people hit the water.

photo: Sebastien B

Victory Mill

victory mill sebastien


Sebastien and Bennett's Urban Decay Tour of the Capital Region continues with a stop at the Victory Mill in... Victory. Photosets: Bennett | Sebastien.

Bennett has a bit about the history of the mill, and the planned loft conversion project, on his blog. And Sebastien has an interesting bit from a friend who grew up near the mill:

The mill was a great motivator for me to go to college and leave the small village of Schuylerville. I grew up hearing stories from my father and brother of their days working in the mill and also telling stories that my grandfather told of his time working there. Hearing these stories made me realize it was something I never wanted to do.

Bonus bit about Victory: the current mayor ran for election on a platform that included a push to dissolve the village.

photo: Sebastien B

iArt: Dan Burkholder's iPhone Artistry

A time-lapse of Dan running through how he creates an image.

By Liz Clancy Lerner

Dan Burkholder is an accomplished photographer and artist. His recent canvas of choice? The iPhone.

Dan has managed to coax the iPhone into creating works with rich textures and sweeping panoramas. He's become so good at it that he wrote a book on the subject that will be out in a few months.

We first heard about Dan's work through an exhibit in Troy last year -- his images were being shown at the Martinez Gallery.

We recently took a trip down to the Catskills to visit Dan in his home studio. He lives there with his wife, Jill (another accomplished photographer), and four cats. He was kind enough to show us how he turns an iPhone snapshot into a work of art.

(Video of how Dan creates an image, plus a handful of his works, after the jump. And the youtube versions can be found here and here)

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The sometimes overlooked Troy

A site called Bag News featured an interview/slideshow today with photographer Brenda Ann Kenneally about Troy:

From the accompanying text:

Brenda admits that all her work is autobiographical. Her past is a guide that helps her explore the lives of the women upstate. Brenda grew up in Albany, not far from her main focus, Troy, New York. Some might say that her work is about the impoverished conditions present in many of America's communities today. Instead Brenda is mostly interested in the social and moral dynamics of living in an "underclass" community.

Kenneally has worked on a handful of projects documenting these communities in Troy. Her "Upstate Girls" project focused on girls in the North Central neighborhood. The work was on display at the Sanctuary for Independent Media, which is in that neighborhood, last year.

Here's an Nieman Storyboard interview with Kennally about her work in Troy. And here are more of her photos (some might be NSFW).

Embedded after the jump is a multimedia collaboration between Kenneally and poet Susan B.A. Somers-Willet about Troy for the public radio program Studio 360.

(Thanks, B)

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Santa Speedo Sprint 2010 photos

Speedo Sprint 2010 santa's sleigh

Santa has some hearty elves this year.

Updated Monday at 8 pm

This year's Santa Speedo Sprint once again proved the scantily-clad Santa dash is one of the most fun events of the year. It's so great to be in a crowd where so many people are smiling.

And last we heard, ASAP had raised $20,000 for the Albany Damien Center!

Many photos are after the jump.

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Saratoga Victorian Streetwalk 2010 photos

saratoga victorian streetwalk sebastien

A good way to stay warm.

Sebastien's posted a photoset with some really nice photos from Thursday's Victorian Streetwalk in Saratoga. The set includes a lot of good closeups of people, costumes and... reindeer.

This year's streetwalk was jammed, apparently. As Drew tweeted last night:

Saratoga is to Victorian Streetwalk as studio apartment is to U2 concert.

photo: Sebastien B

A tranquil time lapse of Albany

Local photographer Pete Dzintars has posted another great series of time lapse videos from in/around Albany. The ESP, Pearl Street, The Palace and UAlbany all make appearances.

Here's Pete's previous time lapse video from around Albany. And here's his Flickr stream (check out this HDR shot of a barn on Krumkill Road).

(Thanks, Pete!)

Arts Center looking for submissions, curators

arts center call for entriesThe Arts Center of the Capital Region has posted a call for entries:

Submissions will be considered for opportunities including solo exhibitions, small and large group exhibitions, installation possibilities, arts-in-education opportunities and more. Visual artists in all media - painting, printmaking, sculpture, installation, video, photography, performance, and mixed media presentations - are invited to submit.
The Arts Center is also interested in offering emerging curators the opportunity to propose exhibits for future programming.

The deadline is January 7.

Good Albany skyline photos?

albany skyline obstructed smallLucas emails:

I'm just curious if you could direct me to some good photos of the Albany skyline/cityscape?
I go to school down in the city, and being back home for Thanksgiving gave me a new appreciation for the Albany skyline as I looked across the Hudson on my way to the train station -- an appreciation that has me yearning for a nice photo of the skyline to hang in my room for all to see (and naturally admire.)

The one that popped into our heads was Carl Heilman's Albany skyline panorama. But there have to be a bunch out there.

Any suggestions for Lucas? Please share!

Ordinary Things

sebastien carrie haddad wilks

Mother and son, over 20 years.

The new show at Carrie Haddad Photographs in Hudson -- "Ordinary Things: When artists make their private life public" -- caught our eye. So we were happy to see that Sebastien had a chance to check it out. He writes of a series of photos by photographer Harry Wilks around which the show formed:

This is one of the most interesting piece of the show in my opinion, as it spans more than two decades. It started in 1987 as a simple picture of the artist's wife and young son, leaning on the bumper of their first car, and turned into a photo ritual year after year. Watch his son age, turn into a teenager, his wife mature, gracefully. This series was never intended to be shown in a gallery - it was a personal project. [Curator] Melissa [Stafford] asked Harry if she could show them and from there the whole exhibit started to grow as more artists joined the project. I was impressed by the vision and the resolve of Wilks, the strong composition over 20 years, the attention to details. I wish I had started such a project already.

Many more thoughts and photos at Sebastien's site.

"Ordinary Things" runs at Carrie Haddad Photographs until December 12.

photo: Sebastien B

Snowy Capitol

state capitol snow 2010-11-08

Brian was nice enough to share this photo with us from Monday.

We like the way the snow dusts the roof of the Capitol and how it defines the shapes in Capitol Park.

photo: @bkraus


halloween freakout 2010 lehr


Jason sent along a photoset from the annual Halloween Freak-out at Valentine's this past weekend, featuring Beware! The Other Head of Science, Sea of Trees, Around the World and Back, and Sgt Dunbar.

The set looks appropriately freaky.

photo: Jason Lehr

Zombie Walk 2010 photos

Well-mannered zombies.

The annual Zombie Walk made its way up Central Ave early Saturday evening. Aside from a nibbled brain or two, it was some good, undead fun.

A whole bunch of photos after the jump.

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Fire at Central Warehouse

central warhouse fire 1

A landmark. Not the prettiest one. But recognizable.

Update Saturday at 12:25 pm

Officials say the fire could burn for three days, maybe longer. [TU]

The Albany Fire Department has decided the building is too dangerous to enter and is focused on containing the fire. [Fox23]

A building very similar to Central Warehouse caught fire in Worcester, Massachusetts in 1999. Six firefighters died in that fire. The upper floors of the building collapsed. [Wikipedia] [Firefighter Nation]

Sebastien has posted a photoset from near the base of building Friday afternoon. We've added a few of the photos after the jump.


Last update: 6:54 pm

There are a bunch of reports coming in via Twitter of a fire at Central Warehouse in Albany. It's the huge, white building just north of downtown -- you can't miss it as you drive along 787.

The photo above is from @LukeGucker. There are more photos after the jump from Luke -- and we've also added some some impressive shots taken by Michael Walsh from across the river in Rensselaer.

We got a report via Bath-on-Hudson Beth that flames were "shooting out" of the building. Lori reports that there's a "terrible" smell in the area near the fire ("awful" is how Amy described the odor).

Sebastien reports from the scene that firefighters are concerned about a collapse. He also reports they're running out of water.

The TU reports that it's unclear whether the building's old refrigeration system still contains ammonia. The type of ammonia used in refrigeration systems is potentially explosive. [TU] [OSHA]

Update via Sebastien's Twitter feed at 5:56 pm: "Fire fell from higher level, now huge fire at bottom. Firefighter says will be there for couple of days, will have to tear down ultimately."

Here's a photoset from the fire, posted by Andrew.


Sebastien, B and others explored the building in 2009 -- the resulting photosets are a bit haunting and oddly beautiful.

Central Warehouse is an old cold storage building that once held frozen foods. Steve shared some of the building's history in a comment last year.

The building has changed hands twice this decade. In 2002 a company called Albany Assets bought it for $800k. And then in 2007 it was sold for $1.4 million to a group called CW Montgomery LLC, which apparently planned to eventually redevelop the building into some sort of mixed-use project. [TU via Highbeam] [TU]

Of the Central Warehouse Jerry Jennings said in 2008: That's one of the biggest eyesores I have here." Demolition of the building reportedly would cost $1.5 million. [TU]

(Thanks to Luke, Michael and Sebastien for sharing the pics, and everyone for all the tips.)

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Virtual weekend: Oktoberfest, Janelle Monae, a whole lot of water

oktoberfest 2010

One of Sebastien's photos from the packed Oktoberfest on North Broadway in Albany.

Updated with another photo!

Stuck doing something else this past weekend? Out of town? Having fun some other way?

Here are a few of the sights and sounds from this past weekend -- you know, sort of like a virtual weekend.

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Balloon Festival 2010 photos

balloon fest 2010

Up, up, up

Grounded by wind the first two day, the balloons finally took flight at the Adirondack Ballon Festival on Sunday in Queensbury. Paul passed along this set of nice photos from the day.

He always seems to come away from the balloon fest with a good panorama or two, and this year is no exception. We still remember the great one he took back in 2008.

A few other balloon fest photosets, from Flickr users kanniduba and Dennis Pause.

photo: Paul Gallo

LarkFest 2010 photos

LarkFEST_2010 panda

Why wouldn't a panda be there?

You couldn't have asked for better weather for this year's LarkFest. And an estimated 70,000 people seemed to agree.

Sebastien sent along a whole bunch of photos from the day. As he wrote on his site:

Center Square neighbors, including myself, know the drill. Either leave Albany for the day, or embrace the crowd, the music, the vendors... and have fun. I grabbed my camera and spent the better part of this beautiful day on my favorite street.

A bunch of his photos -- along with a few links to other photosets -- after the jump.

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Warrior Dash 2010 photos

warrior dash jump over fire


The Northeast version of the Warrior Dash -- basically a 5k mashed up with an obstacle course, run by people wearing costumes -- was this past weekend at Windham Mountain. And it looks like it was some crazy fun.

Diana ran the race with her friends -- and has in-race photos on her blog. She writes: "I've had a few crazy days during my years and this would definitely be in the Top 5!" Jen also ran the dash: "Holy crap, it was incredible, and unlike anything I've ever done in my entire life! It is safe to say that this might be one of the craziest days of my life!"

Sebastien and B used "the good old 'camera excuse' to watch the show from a safe distance" and came back with some great photos. Sebastien has helpfully broken up his photoset into collections of mud pit photos and face-painting photos. B's photoset includes some great details -- like Elvis jumping over fire or the pile of donated sneakers. B comments on his blog that the race prompted a lot of smiles and "the sense of camaraderie was impressive."

Earlier on AOA: Julie asked about where to train for the Warrior Dash.

photo: Sebastien B

Floating in the sky

sunkiss balloon festival sebastien

It's a giant clown head -- floating above you. What's scary about that?

Sebastien passed along a nice photoset from the SunKiss Balloon Festival in Hudson Falls this past weekend. There was a beautiful sky and it provided a great background for the balloons.

It sounds like Sebastien had a good time:

This is my second time up close and personal with hot air balloons and I still wonder how they manage to take off so close to each other, without any incident. Some skills, really. I probably didn't get my quota of hot air balloon as a kid in Frenchland, it's thrilling to be so close to an object that size, right under these giants towering the crowd. They sway back and forth ever so gently, blocking out the sun every now and then. I catch myself keeping my head down when one dangles too close to the ground; something tells me I wouldn't want to be on the receiving end of this giant hug.

Also, there was a huge clown balloon that apparently has been haunting his dreams.

Mike was also there and his set his includes a bunch of good shots.

By the way: the big Adirondack Balloon Festival in Queensbury is coming up September 23 and 24.

photo: Sebastien B

Time lapse Albany

Check out this very calming series of time lapse scenes shot in/around Albany. The sites include UAlbany, 787, Lark Street and a bunch of others (our favorites are probably the State Library and the barn).

The photographer is Pete Dzintars. Here's his photostream on Flickr.

(Thanks, S!)

Ferris Wheel, nine ways

Schaghticoke Fair Ferris Wheel

Pretty x 9

We love this composite of long exposure shots that Sebastien took of the Ferris Wheel at the Schaghticoke Fair. Definitely view it big.

Here's a photoset with more of his long exposure shots from the fair. As he mentioned to us: "Photographers are attracted to Ferris wheels like moths to a flame. Shiny lights."

Earlier on AOA: Jason took some great long exposure shots at the Saratoga County Fair

photo: Sebastien B

In Your Face Wrestling

IYFW amateur wrestling slam

He probably knew this was coming. But still... ouch.

By Rob Gierthy

While at The Track Saturday, baking in the August sun waiting for the Travers to begin, I was talking with some guys and said that this was my first time photographing horses. They asked what I normally shoot.

"Roller derby," I replied.

"Seriously, or are you just messing with us?"

My answer was the "I <3 Rollerderby" button that I keep on my camera bag.

We talked about the local teams for a bit and then they told me about a wrestling event -- In Your Face Wrestling -- scheduled for that night in Ballston Spa, and that I should go take some shots.

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First Prize Center photos

first prize center sign closeup

That sign.

Sebastien and B's Urban Decay Tour of the Capital Region™ continues with the First Prize Center, that huge complex near Everett Road in Albany/Colonie. As Sebastien wrote on his site, "it's a story of pipes, broken catwalks, vats, giant letters, zombies in barrels, 80's toys & Bugs Bunny." (B thought it might be their white whale.)

Photosets: Sebastien | B

Earlier on AOA: Jess looked at the backstory of the First Prize Center last year -- and peopled followed up with some interesting comments.

photo: Sebastien B

The US Water Ski Show Team in Scotia

us water ski show team scotia

Hold on!

After seeing mention of the US Water Ski Show Team on AOA, Sebastien checked out one of their shows in Scotia. The result is a fun photoset -- both nice moments and "Look at that!"

And it sounds like Sebastien had a good time:

This is definitely a family oriented team, you can feel everybody is involved. Children, parents, grand-parents, there is a healthy energy going on. The announcers are a bit cheesy but it's all good, this fits the occasion and the location, in a nice way. Bring your iPod, you never know, maybe I was just super jolly that night. There are always looking for new volunteers by the way, you don't even have to know how to ski. I would try if I had one ounce of balance in me. Picture the enormous splashes.

The team has two more shows lined up in Scotia this summer: August 24 and August 31. The team performs on the Mohawk, right near Jumpin' Jack's (map).

photo: Sebastien B

Barberville Falls

Barberville Falls


Update 2012: The Nature Conservancy is closing access to the falls for summer 2012 because people weren't following the rules.

It's shaping up to be another hot day. Flipping through this photoset Sebastien passed along from the Barberville Falls in Postenkill makes us a feel just a little bit cooler.

Sebastien says he was at the falls last weekend -- and it sounds like he a had a good time. There is a view of the falls from a Nature Conservancy preserve. It might be a fun spot to check out (especially if you include a stop at Moxie's for ice cream).

Earlier on AOA: An even better look at the Cohoes Falls

photo: Sebastien B

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Photos from Heavy at St. Joseph's

heavy event photos

"Mortui Vivos Docent" by Chris Harvey.

Sebastien sent along a photoset from Heavy, the art event at St. Joseph's this past weekend. He noted on his site: "There is something about that unusual space that can really highlight large scale and street installations."

Heavy has been extended for another two days -- this Friday from 5-11 pm and Saturday from 2-11 pm.

Update: Matthew has a short recap, as well, with high praise for the event.

Also: Sebastien's collection of urban decay photos is now available as a photo book, The Unnoticed.

photo: Sebastien B

At the Saratoga County Fair

saratoga fair ride long exposure


Jason sent along a photoset from this year's Saratoga County Fair. His long exposure shots of the rides are really fun.

Update: Paul has also posted a few long exposure shots from the fair.

photo: Jason Lehr

The gubernatorial Flickr

David Paterson at Empire State Plaza July 4 2010News to us: there's a David Paterson Flickr stream. It's a bit like the White House photostream -- public appearances, flattering behind-the-scenes shots.

There's a lot handshaking, like in this set from the ESP on July 4th (let it not be said that Governor Paterson hasn't reached out to the shirtless guys wearing Uncle Sam top hats demographic). Or, in an occasion somewhat more formal, when the the governor accompanied Queen Elizabeth at the World Trade Center site last week.

thumbnail: Governor David A. Paterson Flickr


chuck miller composite

Chuck's set is almost like being there.

We're a little (OK, a lot) late on this because of the summer break, but we're always happy to gawk at fireworks photos. Chuck has a huge photoset from the ESP display. He's also posted an account of the evening (it included Polish horseshoes).

A few other sets to check out:
+ Helena Bowman's nice photoset makes the ESP fireworks look almost plant-like -- sort of like luminous dandelions that have gone to seed.
+ We love the light in this shot by Katie Anello.
+ We like the framing in this shot by liz_ahearn
+ This set by tcsuliv is a bunch of really wide shots. We like this shot, specifically.
+ F1addictob's set includes the Price Chopper "sign" on the Corning Tower.
+ This "hipstamatic" shot by theDreamerWorld looks totally old-school.
+ There's something kind of cool about how the person is silhouetted in this photo by s.m. bush.
+ And Caitee Smith went bokeh on the display.

(Thanks, Chuck! Thanks, Sebastien!)

photos: Chuck Miller

Inside the Central Avenue Trolley Power Station

Knighton's inside.JPG

The second floor at Knighton's. We kind of want to live here.

A lot of people were interested in yesterday's post about the restored trolley power station on Central Avenue -- and a few folks mentioned wanting a tour.

The owner, John Knighton, gave us a tour of the place when we there and we've posted a few more pictures after the jump.

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Lark-ternative looks

larktervative hair

Richard sent along a photoset of the avant-garde looks created by local stylists at the Lark-ternative Hair Competition this past weekend at Art on Lark. Some of the styles are whimsical, some are fierce -- all area little out there.

Bonus shot: Here's another photo from the competition by Mike Watson (Flickr user musicnartblue).

Bonus photoset: Flickr user vonnegutjr has posted a handful of photos from the music stage.

photo: Richard R

Trashion 2010 photos

trashion 2010

Trashion + Fashion = Trashion

Mike has a posted a great photoset from this past weekend's Trashion show at the Atrium in Troy.

The hot looks this year? Compact discs, caution tape, magazines. And there was a lot of look in some of those looks.

Earlier on AOA: Trashion is back

photo: Mike Roach

Capital Pride 2010 photos

capital pride 2010 butterfly

The rain didn't dampen spirits.

Sebastien along a good photoset from the Capital Pride parade this past weekend. Be sure to catch the rest on his photo blog.

photo: Sebastien B

Freihofer's Run for Women results and photos

Freihofers Run for Women 2010

Kenyan Emily Chebet set a new course record in the Freihofer's Run for Women this past weekend in Albany with a time of 15:12 for the 5k (that's an average of a 4:53 mile). Chebet's time smashed the old record by six seconds. She won $10,000 for the top finish.

Race organizers report that 3,927 women participated in this year's race. There are more results after the jump.

Sebastien's posted a photo set from the race -- he captured a lot of great expressions on the faces of the runners.

photo: Sebastien B

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Awesomely Adult Prom photos

ASAP adult prom 2010 king

All hail the prom king.

Remember the Awesomely Adult Prom? Mike's posted a photoset from the party thrown this past weekend by ASAP/ASAP Daisies/SSAP -- and it looks like it was a lot more fun than our high school prom. Here are a few more photos from the TU's Albany blog.

More weekend photos: Sebastien's posted a set from the Memorial Day parade in Albany.

photo: Mike Roach

Sebastien's first photo exhibit

sebastien unnoticed

The old Starlight Music Theater in Latham

Check it out: An exhibit of Sebastien's urban decay photos is currently up at Uncommon Grounds in Albany. From his post about "The Unnoticed":

Moving here from France, I have always been interested in architecture; how a "new country" like the U.S. deals with its buildings and infrastructure. How and why do people abandon places, leaving everything behind: bikes, clothes, cards, teddy bears? Buildings come out of the ground very quickly, but can be abandoned or destroyed just as fast. I attempt to capture this unique feeling of time at work, a frozen memory before it all collapses. Behind those places that are so full of waste and decay, I try to find one splash of color or light, one beautiful thing -- such as flowers growing through a broken window. I try to offer a glimpse into a world where this chaos might, sooner or later, turn into something different, old or new. This is hopefully what you will see in this show.

You might recognize a few of the photos from when they were posted on AOA. We appreciate that Sebastien has shared them with us -- we've really enjoyed posting them.

Also: Have you seen fellow urban explorer Bennett's photo site?

photo: Sebastien Barre

Photos from the Phantogram show

phantogram josh at northern lights May 22 2010

Josh Carter

Jason sent along his photo set from Saturday's Phantogram show at Northern Lights. He emails:

The show was great, albeit a little short - i think they only played for about 45 minutes... They played most of the songs off of eyelid movies, and did so with a lot of energy. The crow[d] was really into them, as you would expect from a hometown crowd. Light Pollution was good too, although i'm not sure if it was the venue or the board mix, but their sound was a bit muddy.

Next up for Josh and Sarah: the Sasquatch Festival in Washington State.

Bonus photo set: Here's a great set of photos by Amanda Hatfield from Phantogram's sold out show at the Bowery Ballroom in NYC last week with Railbird.

photo: Jason Lehr

Tulip Fest 2010 photos

tulip fest 2010 OK Go


Via Sebastien and Jason come a whole bunch of good photos from Tulip Fest.

Sebastien's set includes a lot of crowd shots from the main stage area. Jason's set has photos from the both the main stage and the lake house stage.

Sunday's high temp was 47 -- that's 21 degrees lower than the normal high. And it rained on Saturday. As Jason emailed: "I was glad i brought my raincoat, because getting hailed on sucks."

And from @OKGo on Saturday: "Albany, we stopped the rain just for you. Now lets get ready to celebrate these here tulips..."

Update: But, wait, there's more. Flickr user glittergirrll has a bunch of photos from the main stage, and here are some OK Go photos from Rob.

photo: Sebastien B

Sea of tulips

Here's a warm-up for this weekend's Tulip Fest: Paul has posted a good photoset of tulips from Washington Park.

There are some great close-ups in the short set. Be sure to catch the insect covered in pollen.

photo: Paul Gallo

Fountain Day 2010 photos

fountain day 2010 by kayla galway

Chilly day in the fountain -- yesterday's high temp was 56.

Kayla sent along photos from yesterday's Fountain Day at UAlbany. There are a bunch more in her photostream.

Be sure to check out Patrick's photostream, too -- it includes a bunch of good shots from in the fountain. And here's video from the live stream.

(Thanks, Kayla!)

photo: Kayla Galway

Tea Party Express

tea party express 2010-04-13

The Tea Party Express rolled through Albany today and made a stop near the Capitol. This is the series of rallies that started in Nevada with an appearance by Sarah Palin. Alas, the ex-governor of Alaska didn't show up at this stop (she's scheduled to be at the stop in Boston).

Rob's posted a photo set of the rally and counter-protest. Among the sign topics: spelling, math and sad Sarah Palin on a bus.

(Thanks, Rob)

photo: Rob Gierthy

The Holy Cross Campus

urban decay holy cross

"This is one of the most contemporary location we have visited so far."

Sebastien and B's Urban Decay Tour of the (Greater) Capital Region™ continues with two stops in the Hudson Valley. The crew hit up the The Holy Cross Campus of Pius XII Youth and Family Services in Rhinebeck, NY. From Sebastien's photo set page:

This is one of the most contemporary location we have visited so far. There was a lot to see: a large gymnasium, a swimming pool, an auditorium, a water tower, several basketball courts and playing fields, dorms, classrooms, etc. While it has been reclaimed by nature and vandals for almost a decade now, I couldn't shake the feeling that kids recently walked those corridors. American-style campus are very new to me, we don't quite have that kind of infrastructure in France: despite its troubled past, I quite liked this sprawling institution hidden in the woods, overlooking mountains and a small lake.

Here's his slideshow. And here's the slideshow from B and the set from Darren.

This trip also included a "bonus track" -- Bennett College in Millbrook, NY. As Sebastien writes on the photo set page:

Bennett College, also known as Bennett School for Girls, was a women's college founded in 1890, in Millbrook, NY. It became a junior college in the 1900s. At the time of its closing, enrollment was around 300 students. The college closed in 1978 after entering bankruptcy. ...
It feels important to me that this location is documented and remains in the collective memory. Unfortunately, local residents do not really see it that way. We got busted and kicked out by the cops pretty quickly.

Slideshows: Sebastien and Darren.

photo: Sebastien B

Whitewater Derby 2010

whitewater derby 2010

Anything that floats.

Sebsatien's posted a photoset from this past weekend's Whitewater Derby in Mechanicville. It includes some good shots of the competitors -- especially entrants in the "anything that floats" category.

It wasn't exactly the nicest day to be on the water. "Frigid, windy and downright uncomfortable" was how the Saratogian's Sam Hollingsworth described it.

photo: Sebastien B

A lot of water, falling

Via the Exile comes this video of the Cohoes Falls yesterday:

Here are a few stills: a triptych and a panorama.

The Mohawk was near flood stage yesterday at Cohoes.

Earlier on AOA:
+ A better look at the Cohoes Falls
+ An even better look at the Cohoes Falls

Hello, sunshine!

first crocus

The first crocus we spotted this year.

It was a good day to wake up from a long winter's nap.

We hit 62 today. The forecast for rest of this week:

Thursday: 61 and sunny

Friday: 66 and sunny

Saturday: 67 and sunny

Sunday: 61 and chance of rain

St. Patrick's Day parade photos

st patricks parade 2010 leprechaun

A leprechaun captured mid jig.

The actual St. Patrick's Day holiday is Wednesday -- but the parade in Albany was this past weekend. Sebastien's posted a photo set with a bunch of shots.

This might be the cutest pic.

For St. Patrick's Day: Stewart's will be selling cones for 50 cents again to people who show up wearing green.

photo: Sebastien B

The Chalmers Knitting Mill

chalmers stairway

The mill's been headed down for half a century.

Sebastien, B and Paul's Urban Decay Tour of the (Greater) Capital Region™ continues with a stop at the former Chalmers Knitting Mill in Amsterdam.

The factory was built in 1913 to manufacture underwear. It's been closed since 1959. Uri Kaufman, the developer behind the Harmony Mill conversion in Cohoes, had proposed redeveloping the site in a similar project. The plan met opposition in the city and it now looks like the complex will be demolished. [NYS Parks] [Vintage Skivvies] [Daily Gazette $] [Daily Gazette $]

The urban decay tour crew grew to five this time around. Here are slideshows by Sebastien, B, Paul, Brittany and Darren.

photo: Sebastien B

AOA Birthday 2 photos

aoa birthday2 wide

Midtown was packed for the party.

Thanks to everyone who stopped by the Midtown Tap and Tea Room last Thursday for the AOA birthday party. It was a really fun time! It was great to see so many people again -- and meet a bunch of others for the first time.

There are a whole lot of photos from the party after the jump. Also, here are recaps by Albany Jane and The Exile. And you can read most of the party tweets by searching for the hashtag #AOA2.

(there's more)

Snow lapse

Check it out: Flickr user samson080 set up his camera to take a timelapse of yesterday's snowfall:

[via @WNYT]

By the way: we got a little more than five inches of snow yesterday, according to the National Weather Service.


grafton winterfest polar plunge

(Insert your own joke about shrinkage.)

Sebastien's posted a photoset from this past weekend's Winterfest at Grafton Lakes State Park. One of the chilly highlights: the polar plunge. Lots of "holy ****, it's cold" faces.

The set also includes some interesting photos of state police ice divers, who put on a demonstration.

photo: Sebastien B

Tiny, frozen bubbles

pond ice feet

Right beneath your feet.

We were sliding around Buckingham Pond in Albany the other day and ended up totally nerding out on the shapes and figures created by bubbles in the ice. The clusters of trapped air in the many-inches-thick ice reminded us of tiny frozen nebulae. And we thought they were beautiful.

A whole bunch of photos after the jump, including one large format pic.

(there's more)

Ghost signs

ghost sign in schenectady

The former home of the Barney's department store in Schenectady.

Jessica's post about retro signs inspired Chuck to put together a photo collection of "ghost" signs from around the Capital Region. He explains:

Have you driven by a building in the Capital District, looked up at the building, and noticed what appeared to be a painted advertisement on the building's brick exterior? An advertisement for food or clothing or dry goods, the ad almost faded away with a century of age and neglect? You're trying to figure out what a Uneeda Biscuit is, or where someone actually can buy Bond clothes these days. I've seen several of these "ghost signs" in the Capital Region (also called "faded signs" or "brickads," according to Wikipedia), and I also came across a webpage called that covers the phantom signs of a long-lost advertising run. So over the past few days I took my Nikon D700 and an assortment of lenses, and went out to go ghost sign hunting.

photo: Chuck Miller

Winterfest photos

winterfest face painting

Lots of elves with painted faces.

Update: Sebastien's added more photos

Sebastien is posting a lot of fun pics in a photo set from Winterfest this past weekend.

The set already includes some (super cute) face painting, extreme trampolining and fire juggling. He says there's more to come.

photo: Sebastien B

The Capitol on a cold holiday night

capitol holiday night

What you can't see is the Sheridan statute shivering.

Chuck Miller sent along this nice holiday photo he took at the Capitol last week. We like the way the non-Christmas tree and Sheridan are silhouetted.

Said Chuck in an email: "It must have been about 5 above zero when I took that photo Wednesday night. BRRRRRRRRR."

photo: Chuck Miller

The Al Tech Steel factory

sebastien steel factory

Ick. But, you know, also kind of beautiful.

Sebastien, B and Paul's Urban Decay Tour of the (Greater) Capital Region™ continues with a stop at the Al Tech Steel factory in Menands. From Sebastien's photo set:

Allegheny Ludlum Steel, an abandoned steel mill in Menands, NY. It took us more than 2 hours to expore this enormous site. According to this discussion online, it's a Class 2 Superfund Site, which means it poses a significant threat to public health and the environment. Some cleanup has been done but more is planned. It closed in 1999, and is currently listed as a hazardous waste facility by the EPA.

Here's B's photo set. And here's Paul's.

There's some oddly beautiful -- and creepy -- stuff in there.

photo: Sebastien B

Santa Speedo Sprint 2009 photos

santa speedo jump

It's 25 degrees! Jump for joy!

This year's ASAP Santa Speedo Sprint was a great time -- lots of scantily-clad, sprinting Santas, a cheering crowd and more than $13,000 raised for the Albany Damien Center.

There are many photos -- and some video -- after the jump.

(there's more)

The tree is lit -- with a bang


For best results, take a look at it really big.

Sebastien's posted a photo set from the tree lighting Sunday at the ESP.

(This also explains why we heard fireworks last night. It kind of caught us off guard.)

photo: Sebastien B

The Thanksgiving fog

washington park fog

Creepy and beautiful.

Not to be confused with turkey hangover. Emails Sebastien:

Something weird happened [Thursday] night. I was outside until about 10:30PM, came back home, and decided to go back out to buy something at the corner an hour later. The temperature had suddenly dropped about 5 to 8 degrees, instantly creating a dense "flash" fog in Center Square. It did last about an hour. I grabbed my camera and walked to Washington Park. It was creepy and beautiful.

Here's the slideshow on Flickr. The photos really are eerie.

photo: Sebastien B

A few steps into the past

capitol staircase shorpyThe vintage photo blog Shorpy featured a 1905 photo of the capitol's Great Western Staircase yesterday. Be sure to click through to see the large versions of the photo.

That staircase has quite the history. From a state assembly tour of the capitol:

The Great Western Staircase, also known as the Million Dollar Staircase, took an unheard of 14 years to construct, from 1883-1897 and cost, more than one million dollars. The delays in constructing this magnificent staircase were two-fold. Designed by Henry Hobson Richardson and built by Isaac Perry, the staircase contains 444 steps and reaches 119 feet high. is renowned as an outstanding example of American architectural stone carving excellence.

Here's a more extensive photo tour of the staircase on the site Northeast Architecture, which includes more of the history behind the steps.

From a 1894 NYT article about work on the capitol:

The greatest architectural work on this continent has just been completed in Albany -- in the construction of the western staircase of the new Capitol. Architects who have seen it declare that for originality of design, for beauty, and for accuracy of finish its equal does not exist even in the old country.

The staircase includes the busts and faces of a bunch of historical figures -- a list that was not without some controversy. From a 1898 NYT article:

In carving heads on the great Western staircase in the Capitol, the features of half a dozen men who were prominent only in the local affairs of Albany were made. This has caused considerable ill-feeling, even among Albanian, and it is a question of but a short time, when the faces in stone will be "worked over" from those of obscure persons into those of historical nes.

(Thanks, James G and Dan!)

photo via Shorpy

Photos from Zombie Walk 2009

a zombie

Not a movie.

How do zombies get to the Zombie Prom? They walk. In this case, they walked down Lark Street and then up Central Ave in Albany on Saturday.

The photo above is by Patrick -- here's his photo set from the walk.

There a few more photos after the jump from Paul and Sebastien.

(there's more)

Photos from Flux

Vincent Tocco collage

A collage by Vincent Tocco.

Chuck sent along this photo from the Flux art show at St. Joseph's this past weekend. He's posted a photoset from the event.

Sebastien has also posted some good photos from Friday night, including this great wide shot of the interior.

photo: Chuck Miller

Balloons! Beer! Boats!

oktoberfest 2009 chug cropThere were a lot of fun things to do this past weekend.

Here are a few pics of the fun from Paul, Sebastien and Upstater...

(there's more)

More from the Other Guys shoot



B captured this photo from The Other Guys shoot in downtown Albany. He has a handful of others, including one that shows a prop guy holding an enormous gun, posted in a photoset. (Brian snapped a few pictures yesterday, too.)

An article in the TU today also included a bunch of good photos. Interesting fact from the piece: the days of shooting here will result in all of three minutes of movie.

Earlier on AOA: Detours and parking restrictions related to the shoot

photo: B

Great photos from LarkFest 2009

Company of Thieves

Company of Thieves' Genevieve Schatz

Excellent weather, interesting performers and a big crowd made for some great LarkFest photos. The pic above is by B -- there are bunch of others in his Flickr photoset.

There are two more great photos -- and some video -- by two other photographers, after the jump.

(there's more)

Air Force One landing at ALB

air force one landing

Wave to the President!

Pete Casellini snapped this pic this morning as Air Force One landed at Albany International Airport.

(Many thanks, Pete!)

Update: Check out more photos of Air Force One by Paul and Amy...

(there's more)


Tugboat (The Seahorse).jpg

The Seahorse -- winner of the 2009 "little toot" award. Yes, "little toot."

If you like tugboats (and really, who doesn't), you might want to check out Sebastien's photos from this weekend's Tugboat Round-up in Waterford.

After our tour of the tug Trilogy last year, we've sort of developed a thing for the tugboats. They're cute, they're little and they work hard -- much like ourselves.

Leather factory in Gloversville

Sebastien Gloversville factory

Not the typical factory tour.

Sebastien and B's Urban Decay Tour of the (Greater) Capital Region™ continues with a stop at a former leather factory in Gloversville (Sebastien's photoset | B's photoset).

As you might expect from its name, Gloversville has a long history with leather making. It was originally called Stump City -- but changed its name in the 1800s because it had become a center for making... gloves.

Earlier on AOA:
+ The Wellington Hotel
+ Abandoned train in Glenmont
+ The Starlight Music Theatre
+ Central Warehouse

(Thanks, Sebastien and B!)

photo: Sebastien B

The backstory on de-classified

de-classified thumbnailThe Post-Star's Drew Kerr recently wrote a feature about Mark Andrew, the Saratoga Springs-based photographer who's "de-classified" series looks at the people behind Craigslist personals:

Many people Andrew contacted about participating told him their relationships or jobs could be compromised if they were to shed the confidentiality provided by their online ads. One person also wrote that they "detest predators who take advantage of people in the name of art."
By and large, though, Andrew said people he contacted were receptive to his ambition -- either intrigued by his artistic motivation or, in some cases, lured in by the $50 offer he made them in exchange for taking part.
And once people agreed to participate, Andrew said it often took little more than an hour's conversation over coffee to put them at ease in front of the camera.

Andrew says the site for his project (might be NSFW) has gotten more than a million page views since March.

photo: Mark Andrew

Short, but strong


After the storm.

The severe thunderstorm that swept through the Capital Region had a little bit of everything: heavy rain, strong winds, large hail, temporary flooding, overturned cars -- and an enormous rainbow.

Photos, video and reports from others after the jump.

The storm knocked out power for more than 40,000 households in the Capital Region, according to National Grid. Most of the outages are in Saratoga County.

(there's more)

Oooooh! Ahhhh!

july 4th fireworks


Sebastien, B and Paul have posted some great photos of the fireworks at the ESP this past weekend.

That's one of Sebastien's photos above. Check out the reflection on the Corning Tower in this shot by B. And we love this wide-angle shot by Paul.

Update: Check out Chuck's set of fireworks photos -- they're from a different angle.

photo: Sebastien B

The people behind the Craigslist ads

de-classified thumbnailCheck out this online photo exhibit by Saratoga Springs-based Mark Andrew. (might be NSFW)

It's called "de-classified" -- and it features photos of people who have posted missed connections and other personals on Craigslist. It. Is. Fascinating.

From Andrew's artist's statement:

When I began the project, I anticipated that by the time I got to 50, I would have captured a fairly complete representation of what was to be had. But now that I've hit that milestone, it is very obvious that I've barely touched the surface. Perhaps when I've completed another 200 I'll be closer to what has become my internal true north for the project - an exhibit that represents the human condition.

Some of the pictures are suprising. Some are sweet. Some are sexy. Some are a bit disturbing.

Many of the people featured are local. Among them: the guy trying to sell his underwear, the woman looking to get her money back and the two girls who spotted a hot guy at Washington Tavern.

We're even pretty sure we highlighted this guy in one of our weekly "Craig and his wonderful list" posts.


(Thanks, Dan!)

photo: Mark Andrew

Sculpture in the Streets 2009

sculpture streets 2009

Untitled #1 by Amy Podmore squats between Broadway and James.

This year's Sculpture in the Streets collection is up in downtown Albany. This year's group includes 16 pieces by 11 artists. There's a walking tour of the collection that starts at the Hudson River Way Pedestrian Bridge.

B has posted a great photoset that includes many of the pieces -- it's sort of like a virtual walking tour.

The current collection will be on display until next April.

Earlier on AOA: Sculpture in the Streets 2008

photo: B

The Wellington Hotel

wellington bathtub

A bath with a view

The latest stop on Sebastien's Urban Decay Tour of the Capital Region™: the soon-to-be-no-longer Wellington Hotel in downtown Albany. From Sebastien's photoset page:

We pay a visit to The Wellington Hotel in Albany. One of Albany's once famous landmark, this slim 10-story building designed by Albert Fuller and completed in 1905 on top of State Street Hill has been empty for more than 20 years. Dust, old paint, graffiti, porn, World War II paintings and playing cards glued to the walls whisper the story of fairly strange inhabitants.

There's a lot more info posted there. B also has a photoset from the building -- it includes a lot of graffiti.

The Wellington is slated to be demolished this year.

Earlier on AOA:
+ Abandoned train in Glenmont
+ The Starlight Music Theatre
+ Central Warehouse

photo: Sebastien B

Capital Pride 2009

Capital Pride 2009

There she is, Miss Gay Albany.

Capital Pride 2009 wrapped up yesterday with the annual Washington Park festival and parade.

Sebastien has posted a photo set with a bunch of pics from the day. B's posted a handful of photos, too -- including a good one of the Bombers float and its rather large burrito.

photo: Sebastien B

In bloom

sidewalk petunia

It was just a step off to the side.

We noticed this petunia growing out of a crack in the sidewalk/step on Hamilton St today in Center Square.

It made us smile -- and think a bit about how you never know where you'll find something beautiful.

Abandoned train in Glenmont

glenmont abandoned train

The last stop.

Sebastien's Urban Decay Tour of the Capital Region™ took him to Glenmont recently and this abandoned train.

He says he's not sure about the train's history, but maybe you know something. Here's what he and B do know:

The eight rail cars are entirely derelict and rusting; apparently they were supposed to be part of a living museum that was scrapped. [...] the last three cars are commuter cars that were supposed to represent different eras of rail travel but are now neglected. One photo has a logo that reads "The D&H - Delaware and Hudson 1823-1973 Sesquicentennial", and the D&H is also the name of a building right next to 787.

Here are more photos of the site by B, Mike and Paul -- who has an especially good shot of the locomotive.

Earlier on AOA:
+ The Starlight Music Theatre
+ Central Warehouse

photo: Sebastien B

At the Freihofer's finish

Freihofers finish 2009

Teyba Erkesso, this year's winner, as she approaches the finish line.

Sebastien has posted a photoset from this past weekend's Freihofer's Run for Women (slideshow). The set includes a bunch of great expressions from the finish line.

Ethiopia's Teyba Erkesso won this year's 5k with a time of 15:27. More than 4,000 people started this year's race.

photo: Sebastien B

The Workforce Challenge crowd

workforce challenge start

Away they go.

Sebastien took this photo of the 7000+ participants of last night's GHI Workforce Team Challenge race. He also has video of the start -- watching the motion of the crowd is sort of mesmerizing.

Here's a slideshow of more race pics. Sebastien captured some great expressions from the faces of finishers.

Also: KiMelodic got a few shots of the mass towing that apparently went on along Madison before the race.

photo: Sebastien B

Flickring through the Capital Region

pink petals

It's spring.

The photo above, of cherry blossom petals in Center Square, is by the ever stylish Kim Dunham.

Here are a few other recent local pictures that caught our eye on Flickr...

(there's more)

The Starlight Music Theatre

starlight theatre

People used to refer to it as "The Tent."

Sebastien's ongoing urban decay tour of the Capital Region recently made a stop at the old Starlight Music Theatre in Latham (there's a whole photoset).

To say this place has seen better days is an understatement -- Bob Hope, Sammy Davis Jr., Milton Berle and Johnny Cash all played there at one point.

Earlier on AOA:
+ Central Warehouse
+ What's left of Heritage Park

photo: Sebastien B

The Tulip Ball

too funky

Flickr user m00by has posted pictures from this year's Tulip Ball. The photo set includes a bunch of people in swank attire, including Juliana Hernandez, the new Tulip Queen.

Editors' note: we've changed this entry at the request of the photographers.

(Thanks, Andy!)

Central Warehouse

central warehouse

It's that enormous building you can see from 787.

Update: This building caught fire October 22, 2010.

Check out this slideshow of photos Sebastien took at the abandoned Central Warehouse in downtown Albany. There are some creepy (and oddly beautiful) scenes in there.

The building has changed hands twice this decade. In 2002 a company called Albany Assets bought it for $800k. And then in 2007 it was sold for $1.4 million to a group called CW Montgomery LLC, which apparently planned to eventually redevelop the building into some sort of mixed-use project.

Of the Central Warehouse Jerry Jennings said last year: That's one of the biggest eyesores I have here." Demolition of the building reportedly would cost $1.5 million.

Anyone know anything about the history of this building?

Update: check out the comment Steve posted about the history of this place.

And here are more pics by Kim, Bennett and Paul.

photo: Sebastien B

Springing to life

first flower spring

Today is the first day of Spring -- and right on cue, a flower.

The forecast for this weekend: sunny with highs near 50.

Somebody's a hungry truck

feed me truck

A truck with a sophisticated pallet, er... we mean, palate?

We spotted this truck yesterday at the intersection of Fuller and Washington in Albany.

It made us smile.

Flickring through the Capital Region

dream of flight

Float. Float. Float.

The photo above, of the "Dream of Flight" installation at the airport, is by Flickr user albany_tim. Check it out in a larger size.

Here are a few other local pictures that recently caught our eye on Flickr...

(there's more)

Baby, it's cold outside

snow hood


This picture by Sebastien just seemed to capture the last few days.

photo: Sébastien Barré

Up, up and away

Adirondack Balloon Festival 2008

Paul has a talent for capturing the sky.

Paul Gallo (no3rdw) took some great pics at the Adirondack Balloon Festival this past weekend in Queensbury. Don't miss his HDR panorama shot.

(Thanks, Paul!)

photo: Paul Gallo

Flickring through the Capital Region

abandoned starbucks

An abandoned Starbucks cup on the UAlbany campus.

The picture above is by Flickr user m00by. Here are a bunch of other recent local pics that caught our eye on Flickr...

(there's more)

Flickring through the Capital Region

Spirit of Life in Congress Park

"The Spirit of Life" memorial in Congress Park.

That picture above is from Flickr user iessi, who's quickly becoming one of our favorite local photographers on Flickr. Check out her photostream.

Here are a few more local pics that recently caught our eye:

(there's more)

The Scoop

Ever wish you had a smart, savvy friend with the inside line on what's happening around the Capital Region? You know, the kind of stuff that makes your life just a little bit better? Yeah, we do, too. That's why we created All Over Albany. Find out more.

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