1. French Quarter.
In the "Vieux Carré," you'll always see cobbled streets, bright stucco walls, and wrought-iron balconies. In Carnival season, you'll see walking parades of tourists and locals wearing costumes and masks. Expect the unexpected -- as when photographer Cosmo Condina (www.cosmocondina.com) stumbled upon this parade-cum-birthday-party for a local entertainment producer with live music, acrobats, and stilt-walkers. "Make eye contact with performers," he advises. "If they notice you, they'll work with you." Tight composition with a long telephoto will capture detail on storefronts and faces in live-music clubs; a wide-angle lens will take in the narrow streets.