Tag Archives: New York

Traffic in New York

I’m not sure traffic in New York — or at least in Manhattan — is as bad as everyone says. Then again, I live in downtown Toronto so what do I know? The subway has a lot better coverage than in Toronto. And the grid of one way streets is effective. Cars don’t get stuck at one light … and then the next … and then the next. And pedestrians only have to worry about traffic coming from one direction.

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Bicycle on Broadway viewed from Union Square.

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Traffic cops.

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Exiting the subway.

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Helicopter taking off from the West 30th Street Heliport.

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Trains at the Hudson Rail Yards.

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Vertical parking lot.

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Empty vodka bottle in garbage can. Could the traffic have something to do with this?

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Street Art in NYC

I didn’t have time to sniff out really good examples of street art when I was visiting Manhattan. I suspect that if I were a tourist visiting Toronto, I’d have the same problem in reverse. I wouldn’t know where to look. Nevertheless, I saw what I saw and share it here:

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Times Square – Mecca of Cheese

All the tourists go to Times Square in search of the real New York. What they find is each other … and people hustling them (which may, in fact, be the real New York).

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They’ll hustle you for your money, or your soul … probably both.

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Proselytism can be an aggressive sport.

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The Naked Cowboy sings with a cheesy sincerity.

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Like vampires, all the tourists come out at night.

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There’s a calm that settles over Times Square in the morning.

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Photographing Buildings In Manhattan

Photographing buildings in Manhattan is a challenge, or at least it was for me last week, and for two reasons. First, I didn’t have the right gear, only my little mirrorless Fujifilm camera and a pancake lens. Second, even if I had the right gear, buildings in Manhattan have been shot to death. What could I possibly say that’s original or interesting? So I side-stepped the question. Instead of photographing buildings, I photographed people (since I was really there to do street photography anyways) and was mindful of buildings lurking in the background to give the people context. Here are some of the results.

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Man sitting on fire hose connection with Flatiron Building in background

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Flatiron Building viewed through scaffolding

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Reflection of building in puddle at 5th & E 31st St.

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Girl with violin & the Empire State Building in the background.

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The Chrysler Building

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Grand Central Station at night.

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That Moment of Pause

Not everything in New York City moves at the pace of a George Gershwin piece. People DO take time to pause and reflect. Last week I was privileged to capture some of those moments.

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Gazing over 10th Ave from the High Line.

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Reclining on the High Line.

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Cyclist pauses by the Conservatory Water in Central Park.

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Leaning against the wall at Chelsea Market.

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Here, it’s the window that does the reflecting. It’s the shoe that demands the pause.

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The Digital Moment

From smartphones to camcorders to DSLRs, digital devices have become so ubiquitous, it’s like they’re everywhere. I observe (ironically) with my own digital device, and share (hypocritically?) through digital media. It’s almost impossible now to find a non-digital vantage point from which to observe.

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Selfie on 5th Avenue.

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Not everyone has gone digital.

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Maternity shoot in Central Park.

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Infant looks on while mom texts.

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When you see the Buddha, shoot him!

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Street Photography in NYC – Money

This is related to my previous post about “commerce on the ground” only, in this post, the money is more obvious.

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Cigar-smoking inflatable rat holding money bag.

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Vendor examining a bill.

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Princess in Times Square counting his cash.

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Patriotic lady holding a wad of cash in Times Square.

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Street Photography in NYC – Commerce

When I think of commerce in New York, I tend to think of Wall Street, but there’s commerce on the ground, too: people doing whatever it takes to earn a living. Here are samples that run the gamut from shoppers in the flagship store of the world’s most valuable corporation to buskers in Washington Square Park.

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Dancing in Washington Square Park – note the tip jar on the piano.

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Pushing a food cart across 5th Avenue.

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Waiting for service at the Apple Store.

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Books for sale on a street corner.

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Delivering beer kegs on W 23rd St. by the High Line.

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Street Photography in NYC

I just got back from three nights in Manhattan. I was able to devote two and a half days to intensive loitering as me and my mirrorless camera honed our street photography skills. Street photography in Manhattan is like shooting fish in a barrel. It’s so easy. I can think of a number of reasons why this is the case.

The first and most obvious reason is the intensity of pedestrian traffic. With so many people on the streets, it produces a continuous stream of interactions and exchanges–the dramatic subject matter of street photography.

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Hailing a cab on 5th Ave at E 53rd St.

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