Floating Pool Lady: Part 2

On architectural shoots I have a few agendas. I try to get a good mix of the standard architectural fare, some shots of people using and interacting with the work, and some shots that reflect my own aesthetic. For these Floating Pool Lady posts, I mixed the shots up so each post has some examples of each type of shot.

Part 1 is

FYI: NYC Parks' public pools
open TODAY!


Beach Stairs, 2010

Typology: Beach Stairs, Montauk NY, 2010. (Click to enlarage)

I just got back from a well-deserved mini-vacation weekend in Montauk. My goals were spending some quality time with the wife, getting in a few miles on the bike, laying on the beach, floating on some waves, relaxing by the pool, eating good food, and catching up on some World Cup games. Mission accomplished on all accounts! My only regret is that I couldn't will England and the USA on to the quarterfinals--but I was OK with that after a few Red Stripes.

Montauk is at the east end of the South Fork of Long Island. I'm a North Fork guy for the most part but Montauk has forced me to reconsider. There is only one road into town, and the place, although only a few miles from the Hamptons, is worlds away from the stuffiness and scenesters of Southampton and East Hampton. Everyone is down to earth and the place exudes classic Long Island/New England charm.

Walking the beach between town and Ditch Plains, there is a lot to catch your eye-the great blue Atlantic, beautiful girls on a stroll, amazing sea cliffs, and surfers jockeying for the next ride. Any of those attractions would make for some memorable photos, but the subject that I found most interesting and photogenic may be the least expected--the humble beach stair.


Subway Light Contact Sheet

I recently had separate conversations with fellow photographers Jospeh O. Holmes and Michael Schmidt about contact sheets. Aside from sitting with a photographer and discussing their work, the contact sheet is perhaps the best way to understand a photographer's working and editing process. You get to see all the variations, uncropped and unedited. (Maybe its just fun to see that even the all-time greats' best work is not always a "one and done" shot.)

Within the last year, a number of fine photography books have tackled the contact sheet. A few noteworthy examples include the now classic Looking In: Robert Frank's The Americans, Jim Marshall: Proof, and Steve Crist's The Contact Sheet.

I suppose this qualifies contact sheets as a "trending" topic.

In light of this, I thought it would be fun to take one of my favorite street shots and do up a proper contact sheet--so here it is. This shot was an outtake from my work on the Nikon D80 advertising campaign (it was never used in the actual campaign). I remember this day well, as I intended to make dozens of great photos on the Staten Island Ferry. I rode the ferry back a forth a few times and after reviewing my shots was disappointed that I didn't get the great shots I expected. I laid a big goose egg. I got off the ferry at Whitehall Terminal at sunset and dejectedly walked north to catch the PATH train back to my apartment in Hoboken. As I ambled toward the train station, I came upon this subway light, something it about it just spoke to me, and before I knew it I was shooting it from below. I did end up with a magical shot--just not the one I expected.



High Line Section 2 Aerials

I shot High Line construction yesterday morning. When you've been shooting the same project as long and as often as I have with this one, you're always trying to find a new perspective, something that you didn't capture before. Sometimes that means getting in close and capturing overlooked details. Yesterday it meant getting a little elevation to really illustrate the scope of the project and the work at hand. I'm always pleased with the way that these aerial shots turn out, especially with the hard morning sun and shadows.

In these three shots, taken from a rooftop on 26th St, you can see the Section 2 work coming together. Look carefully and you can see the rail and walkway snaking their way north in addition to portions built and waiting to be built of one of the most exciting features of Section 2, the Woodland Flyover. I'll post some park level shots of this construction next week.


Mr. Bono

I was digging through the archives tonight when I came across some shots of U2 from a few years back. I know, I know...U2? Definitely not my usual subject material, but every rule has exceptions! Bono and the boys are some of the nicest people in the rock world. This particular frame was used as the basis for "Bono Side View" by the Irish portraitist David Nolan.


Floating Pool Lady: Part 1

Is it just me or is it getting hotter much earlier than normal this year? This past week was a scorcher here in NYC. Global warming in full effect! This heat gets me thinking of one of my favorite architectural shoots--the Floating Pool Lady. I shot this a few years back for Jonathan Kirschenfeld Architect, the Neptune Foundation, and NYC Parks. Great concept, simple and effective design, and hey, what's not to like about putting on your swimsuit to shoot. I had tons of fun on this one and I had the pool all to myself before and after hours. Nothing like doing laps in your own private pool anchored off what is now Brooklyn Bridge Park under the NYC skyline.


Iphone: A Voyage by Train

Get your ticket, find a seat, and hold on tight as you navigate the Oyster Bay Line at breakneck speeds (30mph)! Shot and processed with the Iphone.



From an ongoing series of mine entitled Tanks, Containers, and Stacks: Photos of Industrial America Snuck from in the Car, Outside the Fence, and Behind the Trees.  These Lego-like shipping containers were shot in and around the port of Elizabeth New Jersey in areas that most people would seldom venture to see--industrial shipping zones.  
Shooting for this project, I try to work quickly to avoid run-ins with private security and police.  If I'm lucky it's one shot and off to the next one.  I'm usually far gone by the time security arrives.
As featured in File Magazine, A Collection of Unexpected Photography.