Category Archives: Pictures

Pacifier Trees

A Danish rite of passage occurs when a child gives up their pacifier. All their pacifiers are gathered, and the family makes a trip to a pacifier tree. The pacifiers, and sometimes bottles as well, are left on the tree. Often notes are left as well, that explain that the child no longer needs these comforting items because he or she is older now.

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København, in Color

For Christmas I got a new digital SLR. My last one came out in 1999, and it’s mind-boggling how far things have progressed. The new camera is lighter, smaller, has a far superior screen, and vastly improved battery life. Furthermore, the new one costs one tenth of what the previous one did ($599 vs. $5,500). There are more pictures here.

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Burning cars and tender eardrums


It didn’t seem to be big news for the world media, but Copenhagen has had rioting all over the city, including in my neighborhood. At the time, my brother Diego was visiting. We had no idea that rioting had been breaking out all over the city for twelve hours at this point, but at about 9:00 pm he came into the apartment and told me about a fire across the canal.

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Burnt Retinas

Technically, photography is about exposing either film or an electronic sensor array to just the right about of light. Too little light makes no impression on the medium and results in black, and too much makes such a strong impression that the result is all-out white. Having too much light is different from taking a picture of a white wall, because the wall will actually be a shade of grey, which the brain interprets as white. Too much light, or overexposure is pure white. It’s as white as the medium can possibly go.

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Embracing the Grey

Wierd catering/party boat Bikes outside the Kongens Nytorv metro station Escalator inside the metro station

Taking pictures in Copenhagen during winter is challenging. Everything is sort of grey, there isn’t much light, and the days are very short. But I saw some winter photographs of Denmark recently and realized that you can solve the first problem by shooting in black-n-white. I took these today in Christianshavn and Kongens Nytorv. There are more here.

Room With a View

I took these from my condo in Seattle last summer. The colors are, I admit, a bit exaggerated. I cheated, but in the same way that professional nature photographers cheat — by using Fujifilm Velvia slide film. At any rate, I’m pleased with them, although these scans really don’t do justice to the actual slides.

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Ghost Ship


Apparently a Russian shipping company went out of business or something, while a ship, The Alexa, was out at sea. The crew ran out of supplies and fuel in Iceland, but someone there gave them enough supplies to get back to Europe. They made it to the channel between Denmark and Sweden, put out the anchor, and abandoned ship. That was on July 13th, and it’s been there ever since. The Danish government has put a lien on the ship to insure that the shipping company pay the crew before they can reclaim the ship. General consensus is that it’ll be a twelve to eighteen months before the ship gets hauled off, but a recent storm moved the ship about 800 meters! (That’s half a mile!)

It’s a huge ship, which looms quite impressively even at a good distance.

Parental Figures Visit

Mom and Dad were just here for two weeks. It was really fun to show them around and hear their impressions of where I’ve been living. My apartment is plenty big enough, so we weren’t crowded, and we had enough time to see and do quite a bit despite the fact that I really couldn’t take much time off work.


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A few oddities…

Apparently bikes fall or are thrown into the canals all the time. Once a year, the police fish them out, notify owners (each Danish bike has a sort of VIN number), and put the unclaimed up for auction. Here’s what a fairly new bike looks at the bottom of the canal, along with a close-up:

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I’m told that if the police ever have reason to pull you over on your bike (no lights after dark, for example) the first thing they’ll do is check a national list of stolen bikes. Bike theft is a problem — my friends had two of their bikes stolen this weekend.
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My new pad

I got my apartment today. It’s what we’d call a 2 bedroom in the US, but here they call it a 3 room apartment. It’s about 85 square meters, or around 900 square feet, which is meager in the US but quite large for Copenhagen, especially for one person. It’s on the floor that in the US would be called the 2nd, but in Denmark the 1st floor is considered to be the first floor above the ground floor. The living room and small bedroom face out onto a beautiful and unmistakably European courtyard. The kitchen and big bedroom face out to a small, quiet street.

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