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West Texas Roadtrippin

Posted in fine art photography, travel photography, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on April 4, 2018 by squintphotographyart

West Texas

I just got back from a really great road trip last week. Didn’t I say last time I was going to do it?!! I headed out to West Texas on that long stretch of I-20 that would take me to the open spaces of West Texas. I also wanted to head on up to New Mexico and visit some parts of the state I had not explored before.

My focal destination and home base would be El Paso, but I planned on making some stops along the way. I figured I might as well make the most of the long trip and take as many photos of the landscapes on the route there.

SweetWater

The first of my stops was Sweet Water, a sleepy town with a cool art deco theater, applicably named the Texas Theater (like many others in the state). I didn’t stay here long, only long enough to check out their charming town square.

Stonehenge

I then made my way into Odessa to see the Texas Stonehenge replica on the campus of UTEP. It is pretty kitschy, but I thought, what the heck, I gotta see this thing. The replica matches the original Stonehenge in horizontal dimensions, but not height. It was fun to see, but I started to feel a bit restless. By this time I had been driving for almost seven hours and I was feeling eager to reach El Paso. I felt somewhat bummed that I hadn’t yet seen any really spectacular sights on my drive out.

But then came the mountains and I came upon a jewel in the desert…

Van Horn Yellow

Van Horn Mountain View

The intoxicating charm of Van Horn, Texas made my heart go pitter patter. The tiny adobe structures and old store fronts against the mountain backdrop felt almost like a movie set. In fact, many movies have been filmed in and around this small Texas town. I only allowed myself an hour here, because it was getting late, so I definitely need to return and explore this charming place some more.

Now on to El Paso…

Elp

El Paso is a mixture of big city and small town charm. Many old buildings or their fascades have been kept in tact adding to a feeling of stepping back in time. Also, the mingling of cultures from Mexico, New Mexico and Texas make one feel as if they have crossed several borders. I love how all the customs mesh together and live in harmony here. Making El Paso, I truly unique town with lots to offer.

Plaza

El Paso Street

In addition to exploring West Texas I also took advantage of my locale, to venture into New Mexico. It’s literally a hop, skip, and jump to reach the state line.

White Sand

I had always wanted to visit White Sands and finally got to do so. It is truly an ethereal place. You feel as if you’re on another planet. Gorgeous white dunes for over 200 square miles. I could have spent hours upon hours there.

Guadalupe

On my way home I took an alternate route and drove up into the Guadalupe Mountains along the Texas and New Mexico border. This was one of the more beautiful parts of my trip. This particular day was a bit cloudy at times and I was hoping I’d spot a thunderstorm. I can only imagine how gorgeous that would be over those rocky mountains.

I have a feeling I won’t be making this trip again anytime soon, so I am glad I took the time now to do so. Getting around in Texas is never easy, simply because it’s so big and there’s so much to see and usually so little time! That being said, there are many other parts of Texas I’d like to explore, such as Palo Duro Canyon, Big Bend and more of the East Texas forests.

I hope you’ve enjoyed the highlights of my West Texas journey. Taken any good roadtrips lately? I’d love to hear about them!

To see more of my Texas photos, check these out!

Sonja Quintero / Squint Photography

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Travel Photos 2017

Posted in fine art photography, travel photography, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on February 7, 2018 by squintphotographyart

Thames

Hello everyone! I’m so glad to be back here. I know I’m a bit late to this party. Oh well, so be it, I’m still gonna throw it. I wanted to share photos of the places I captured and traveled to this past year. My goal was to go somewhere every season and I pretty much accomplished that. Of course, there were many other places I had wanted to go, but alas, money and time are always an issue.

I had dreams of traveling to the Pacific North West and visiting Seattle for the first time. Spending some time in New York over Christmas was also on my wish list. And while I did get back to New Mexico for a few days, I didn’t get to see the White Sands, like I had hoped. That all being said, I did venture to some great places in 2017. Saw the birthplace of the Blues, walked among the cobblestones of America’s Founders and listened to a band play in the most famous club in the world.

Come see where I’ve been…

 

My first trip of the year was by car. I drove the 7 or so hours from Texas to Memphis, Tennessee. Memphis is a cool, but somewhat sleepy town. Of course I had to visit Graceland and Beale Street. And a trip to Memphis wouldn’t be complete without some BBQ! Some of the best brisket I have ever tasted!

This is my fave shot from the trip. Visiting Sun Studios on a cold, rainy morning. I didn’t get to do the tour, but I hope to get back there and do so. It was very cool being so close to where legends recorded.

Sun Studios

 

Next up: going to Philadelphia was quite an exhausting trip. I spent a whirlwind of three days there and did a ton of walking, taking lots of photos along the way. That is definitely the best way to explore the city, but if you’re on limited time like I was, it feels like you’re racing against the clock constantly! However, I enjoyed every minute of it. The mixture of its rich history and modern vibe was ripe for city exploration.

I took this image from the top floor of the PSFS building in center city. I think the iconic Liberty Place buildings are absolutely gorgeous and framing them just like so…

Philly

 

In the Summer my husband and I finally got back to New Mexico and spent some time both in Albuquerque and the Jemez Mountains. There is nothing like those blue skies and fluffy clouds. This was more of a laid back, relaxing trip, than a time to take photos, but I did snap some while I was there. I couldn’t resist!

Jemez

 

The big trip for me last year was getting overseas to London again, in the Fall. This was the first time in many, many years that I had been overseas on my own. I was surprised not to feel a lot of trepidation. Instead, I just felt an eagerness and excitement to be in that amazing city again. The energy and melding of cultures is

It’s hard for me to pick a favorite picture from this trip. Plus, I’m still working on a lot of them! But, overall I think this image epitomizes the London spirit. A classic red phone booth, with a Big Ben photo bomb!

I See Big Ben

 

My last trip of the year was just an extended weekend to celebrate my moms 75th birthday. She had always wanted to go to Las Vegas, so off we went for a fast weekend of neon and 24 hour gambling.

We stayed in the old, downtown part of town. I have to say I liked it better than the Strip. But, honestly, now that I’ve been to Vegas twice, I realized that I have no reason to go back. Well, except maybe to visit the Neon Boneyard. But I doubt that will happen, they are just too strict about photography there.

Flamingo

 

As 2018 gets underway I am busy planning my next photo trips. I’ve already gone to San Francisco, so I’m thinking next up is Toronto, then another West Coast venture and hopefully Amsterdam in the Fall.

Traveling is a great love of my life, but it can take a lot out of you, both physically and financially. However, I’ve learned that I’m willing to fork up a bit more dough to stay somewhere that is closer to the sights I want to see. Since time is usually short, I now realize it makes more sense to stay at a place that’s more convenient for my photo excursions. That’s when good planning really helps!

I’d love to hear of your travel plans. Until next time, Happy Travels!

Sonja Quintero / Squint Photography

 

Taking in Philly

Posted in art, fine art photography, travel photography, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on June 7, 2017 by squintphotographyart

I spent a few days in Philadelphia two weeks ago and really enjoyed getting to know the town. The obviously cool thing about Philly is its significance in American history as the birthplace of our Declaration of Independence, but beyond that astounding importance there is also the fact that it is just a really cool city, full of history, fab architecture and amazing art collections.

It feels somewhat like a small town, with the cobblestone streets, row house and walk ability. I found it quite easy to get around the center of the city and even beyond (even if my feet were screaming!) Their public transportation was also quite convenient and easily navigated. Although, walking was my preferred mode of transportation, because I didn’t want to miss a thing.

Upon my arrival, I was disappointed to find out that the clock tower on City Hall was closed for renovations and the famous William Penn bronze statue was shrouded in scaffolding. Not quite the level of disappointment I felt when the Trevi Fountain was under renovation during my Italy trip, but still, deflating, considering how iconic that figure is to the Philadelphia landscape. Bummer, indeed.

Philly

 

I visited the places that are essential to really learn and appreciate Philly, Independence Hall, the Liberty Bell and the Philadelphia Museum of Art. I even ran up the “Rocky Steps”! Eye of the Tiger, and all!….

The importance of the historical sites had a profoundly moving effect on me, considering our current political climate. I saved these visits for my last day there, so that I could give them my full attention.

Philly_2

 

To see the views looking in, I ventured across the Ben Franklin Bridge into Camden, New Jersey to take some skyline shots looking west. If I had been truly smart I would’ve gotten out earlier that morning to take advantage of my one sunny day on my Philly trip! I also got evening views looking in from the west, but as the clouds and rain settled in, I wasn’t too happy with the results.

Below are some of my fave images so far. Some of them a bit processed, some not.

Philly_4Philly_5Philly_6Philly_7Philly_8

Have any photos or stories of Philly? Please share!

To see more of my work and what I do go here.

Check me out on Etsy too!

Sonja Quintero/Squint Photography

 

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