2012 – The best photos of the year

There were only two major photo events for me in 2012 – Shuttle and Sandy – so most everything else is posted randomly and small (the site where I was posting some of these had a 640px long-side limit). 2012 was the first year that I started to save “best-of” files, so they were already done.


The shuttle Enterprise’s NYC/NJ flyover

Here’s what I wrote back then:

As all good Trekkies know, when it comes to the Enterprise, the best place to be is on the bridge, so that’s what I did this morning: I went to the George Washington Bridge to shoot the shuttle Enterprise’s flyover on a NASA 747.

The rest of the story (and additional pictures) can be found here: http://www.hackensacknow.org/index.php/topic,2422


Approaching the bridge:



After it passed the bridge, I tried to get some shots of the rear of the tandem as it started to climb to a higher altitude. Unfortunately, a lot of trucks in the westbound lane of the GWB were whizzing by and ruining the shots…………….until I got this one, which I love. As I wrote:

It looks like a 1950s hot rod under a 1970s airplane that’s carrying a 1980s space shuttle – ground, air, and space over water.



Most people on the GWB left at that point, but I knew that not only was it coming back, it was also going to make a third appearance, cutting across NJ just south of the bridge (and parallel to it) to do a fly-by at NY’s LaGuardia and JFK airports. It actually cut across closer to me than I thought it might and I got this shot:



Superstorm Sandy and aftermath

This is my best shot during the storm. It wasn’t raining, so I could clearly see what at first looked like a volcano a half-mile away. It turned out that no homes were on fire…………….it was just a lot of extreme sparking from downed wires.







Electrical wires kept a tree suspended over a street:




A mockingbird (I’m assuming it’s the same one) started showing up every morning on the top of one of my building’s chimneys and just started singing up a storm, which I could clearly hear in my apartment.

I went on the roof to see it and noticed that – at semi-regular intervals – it would suddenly leap 10-20′ in the air and return to the same spot………….without ever missing a note.

“I gotta shoot this!”

Pretty easy to do – bring out a lawn chair, sit and use some concert timing…………….Bang! Zoom! Done!

People started finding the shots online and began posting them on social media: “Bob Leafe’s beautiful images of the Northern Mockingbird…………..”

Between Hammy and Jukebox, is it any wonder that I don’t like to go out much anymore? I might miss something.













I just found this and it had no info. I can tell I took the original shot of Hammy in 2012 because his eyes are brownish (they were yellow in 2011). I ran it through a kaleidoscope program and it worked really well.


I like that shot a lot, but my absolute favorite (and best) shot of Hammy is this after-dinner closeup:

The reason the area under my watermark is yellowish is because the shot was taken through one of my bedroom windows and the window had an old, dried-up drop of paint on the glass, which was the last thing I’d be noticing when this magnificent creature is this close to me and staring right at me. It’s actually a bit less obvious because of the watermark, but now it may be more obvious because I mentioned it.




“Yo! Cookiepants!”



“Yo! Crazypants!”



This is a Crane fly on my window:



This looks like a weather sandwich: stormy with a rainbow on the lower level, a mix in the middle and sunny with puffy clouds on top.



I was up real early one morning for some reason and was out on the roof when I saw this almost perfect V-formation of geese, who were lit up by the just-risen sun. I’ve never even seen that before, let alone gotten a shot of it.



The Bergen County Courthouse and a fire in the Meadowlands:



The rest of 2012:









Raw catfish sushi:































Valentine’s Day:






















1959 Mercury:






















Madonna visits………






















































Special event for end-of-school-year (a block-and-a-half away):


Just a regular day in the neighborhood:



On the Hackensack River and coming straight at me in my living room:















After I take two, I’ll call you in the morning.




The first one is an 8-shot stitch of my neighborhood as seen from the top of the Sears tower. If you’ve been following along, you know where I live in this shot. The only structure not seen previously and which might be of interest to locals is the Holy Trinity Grammar School, where I attended from grades 5-8. It’s the U-shaped building where my watermark is displayed.

There are a bunch of Sears tower shots on this blog. Up there by the flag is about a 12-story level. The building – two blocks from where I live – was constructed in 1932. But there were ZERO pictures from up there in the city’s database – until now – so I was fortunate to get up there (“fortunate”, my ass – it took two months of negotiations with a Sears corporate attorney at Sears HQ in Hoffman Estates, IL, to get permission to go up there. It was given because I was up there to take “Before” shots of the Main St area in advance of a major rehabilitation project. I must say, though, that the attorney was very nice about it).

Click the image once. After it takes over the screen, hover the mouse over the image. You should get a + sign. Then click it again. It’s now full-size and must be scrolled to see everything. Click it once more to shrink it back and then use your back button to return to the post.


This one is a 5-shot stitch of a sunset, taken from my roof:



Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *