Being a photographer-writer couple, we’re sensitive to to visual signs and messages—as a team. Separately, he’s 100% image-focused and I’m 100% word-oriented. For example, when we arrived in Portland, OR, we parked the car and looked for a coffee shop. It was a cold December day and our eyes scanned the streets as we walked quickly. We turned a corner. I squealed and pointed at a huge sign, jumping up and down like a two-year old.
Joe followed my finger and his eyes lit up. “Great old building,” he said, reaching for his camera.
I was puzzled. “What building?”
“The one you’re pointing to. Look at the detail over the windows.”
I shook my head. “No, I’m pointing to Nordstrom. They always have a coffee shop and afterward we can look at shoes.”
“Oh. Yeah. Didn’t see that. OK, but first let me shoot the building next to it.”
That’s typically the way it goes when we drive or walk, but at least combined, we manage to cover it all!
Most often Joe will go out to shoot by himself, or with another photographer. When we are together and he sees something and stops, I’ll walk ahead or check the street for interesting stores. That’s usually when I have the time to read the sidewalk signs. I like to think of these messages as signs from the universe. Here are some of my favorites from Wilmington, Southport, Saratoga, Portsmouth, New York, and some I don’t remember where.