Photography: Liberty State Park


Because it's Autumn, my real favourite season (I sometimes pretend Summer is, but Autumn really wins every time), and because I love going on long walks in new places, taking lots of photos, I'm determined to do this as much as possible until I won't be able to do it as much anymore. Who knows where I will be next year (although I have a pretty good idea of what I will actually be doing!), so I may as well do as much of it as I can right now. That and other outings like going out to dinner and the movies, things that I may not have too much of a chance to do much next year...

 
This week Cesar and I went out to Jersey City to visit Checho, and walked all around Liberty State Park, picnicking in the park, right across from the Statue of Liberty, watching the crazy clouds cross the sky, aiming to disperse and then failing and falling back into grey doom again. My favourite kind of weather, ominous and windy, with a hint of hope. I will never fail to admire the Manhattan skyline, even after over 8 years of living in this city. From wherever you are it always looks amazing, a mix of old and new with constant additions. I always wonder how many more skyscrapers will fit on the small island... I've heard news that in the next few years very tall buildings will line 57th street, right below Central Park, buildings that will rival the height of One World Trade Center, the building which now makes the Empire State building look tiny in comparison. I suppose that as long as there are pockets of land available there will be room for building up. And up.


In any case, it was a wonderful day, amongst people I love, with beautiful views. This city still has so much to share with me, which makes it all the more such an amazing place to live in.
You can see the full set of photos HERE

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Liberty State Park, a set on Flickr.

Knoxville Morning in New York City during a weekend in March

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Knoxville Morning , a set on Flickr.



I don’t even know where to start on this, and I know a much better story is to come in the following days once I feel a little less tired and a little more able to find the right words for everything (this is definitely one for the Orchard Street tales that I am compiling at the moment, and maybe less so for this blog). All I can say right now is it was a weekend filled with wonderful music, great company and a lot of epic fun – with two really long shifts at work in between. It all started on Friday evening with Knoxville Morning’s brilliant set at Mercury Lounge, followed by some more tunes at the Sixth Ward (including some barstool dancing and a lot of hat switching), moving into another epically long day at Taqueria, followed by more Mercury Lounge, 200 Orchard, Double Down Saloon, Mary O’s and Puck Fair. I’m sure there were other places in between, and much laughter and stupidity at every corner, and more laughter again…

In the meantime, here are the photos I took at the show (see above for a link to the full set) –  I was going to spend time editing them a little to make them a little sharper, but to be honest I like the little blur around the edges on some of them – a little how I feel that this whole weekend has been. I’m also still in love with this lens, it has no zoom, so you need to spend more time actually framing the shots properly, but I like that it gives more of a wider angle than other lenses do. And it reminds me of my film camera, the Canon AE-1.

And here’s a video from the Sixth Ward. Enjoy.

 

Photography: Foothills & Lake (California)

Up a hillThe EndSunsetShoreSacramento LandscapeRocks
RiverbedPlayingPlaying 2Long ShadowsLonely ParasolLog
HeartFolsom LakeEerieDrinksDesolateBlue Green Yellow
BeerTrucksTracksSouthern PacificSignGold West Service
Foothills & Lake, a set on Flickr.

I've been back nearly two weeks now, but here are the last of my California photos... I took a trip up through the hills with my mum, past farms and houses and unicorns (I still think they were real life unicorns). Then we went down to Folsom Lake to see the sun set, watching the dragonflies swarm over the trees and put my feet in the cold water.

However much NYC is my home, I will always miss California (and unicorns).

Photography: Lake Tahoe

Snow-tippedMountains and LakeGreen and BrownLake TahoeGooseBlues
SunshinesPines on the beachLooking UpMountain ViewMore BluesRelaxing
PinesTiffanyPaddling ByKarli & Tiffany B&WKarli & Tiffany colourMarshes
No ParkingBeach-boundMountain flowersBee-chasingPure SilenceStriking Colours
Lake Tahoe, a set on Flickr.

Summertime road trip with my sister and our good friend Tiffany. 100 miles east of Sacramento, on the California/Nevada border, through the mountains. Heart-shaped sunglasses, coffee pit stop in Placerville by the highway, jokes about bath salts and zombie apocalypses, up, up to the 7,000 plus feet summit where the views are blue on other blue on green on rock. Down towards the lake, a stroll through two casinos where we were asked for our ID by a woman who laughed when she realised we were really 34, 33, 32. Put $3 in a 1 cent machine and won $9.22 back, grabbed huge sandwiches at a deli and had a battle of the wits with the geese at Pope Beach. Cold, cold water and hot sun beating down on us, cigarettes under the pines and along to Baldwin beach where the air was quieter but the sun just as hot.

Backtrack with the car the other way, through windy roads and into bear land, pine woods and bird song, out to the hidden gem of Fallen Leaf Lake. Cooler breeze, the smell of fresh air, cold cold waves lapping our feet, snow-tipped mountains and cabins stuck deep in the forest. Getaway land, a place to retreat and find pure rest again. Striking colours and clear air - I miss being in the mountains again already. Sunshine in our eyes all the way down with Varsovie and The Kills in our ears, temperature rising with each drop, back in the valley again.



Photography: Sacramento Cemetery

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Sacramento Cemetery, a set on Flickr.

I have always loved cemeteries. When I was a child in England we used to pretty much live in a cemetery, and that's where I would play with my sister every day. As a teen the village cemeteries used to be our meeting points, the places where we would hang out and smoke,watching the time go by until we could go and have a drink at the pub. In France we lived down the street from the large city cemetery and would go there at night to see if we were scared, and usually end up getting chased away by a guard (or what we imagined to be the guard). Apart from the beauty of many of the tombstones, there is also something so peaceful and restful about a cemetery, somewhere where you can hide from the bustle of the city and where time seems to stop for a while.
I love old cemeteries, where the dates go back to centuries gone by, where moss has grown over the gravestones, and where you can imagine stories of families long gone.

Yesterday I went down to the Old City Cemetery in Sacramento, where the founders of the city as well as the first settlers are laid to rest, and also the governors of the state of California. There is something special about seeing beautiful, well-preserved old tombs amidst large California pine trees and palm trees. What caught my eye the most where the array of statues on the tombs, dotted all around the cemetery, warriors and weeping women, swords and cloaks, standing proud under the California sun. I've been working on getting that same over-exposed, black and white print look on my digital camera that is always much easier to get on my old manual SLR film camera, and it works especially well when the sun is so bright. Perfect for an old cemetery in my opinion, but I think for the rest of my stay here in California I will be going back to colour for a while - I want to make sure I get many shots of the contrasting dried-brown hills and the lush flowers of the oleanders that grow everywhere.


Photography: Store Fronts

The New JasonTaj GrocerySteeplechaseSoul II SoulRubysQueens of Sheba
PrimorPopeyesPawn ShopNathan'sNathansMexican Restaurant
Live PoultryLions DenLiberty Department StoresLegacy VideoJewelryJesus saves Brooklyn
Jackson HewittHigh TimesHappy DaysGaudy GrillFreedom DeliFish-Meat
Store Fronts, a set on Flickr.
I started this project earlier this year when I realised that I kept taking photos of random storefronts in Brooklyn and Manhattan. I started putting all the photos together and realised it could be quite a cool collection... I've been on a bit of a photography lag lately, not really feeling inspired, or too tired to go and find something to spike my interest. I woke up way too early this morning and just decided to go out for a walk, and found some interesting places.
This is just a small collection - I'm sure I'll be adding a lot more to it over the next few months.

Photography: People/Portraits

SleepyEyesDiscussionObservingHilariousJess
DylanSelf-Portrait 2DavidGrand FinaleJokesterGathering
KarliLaurenGinaBethArielleTired
Cabo ChildrenPolicewoman and Fireman 3HellfireTheresaMarineFlute Fairy

People/Portraits, a set on Flickr.

I finally took the time yesterday to start putting this collection together. Taken over the past two years, these are all shots of people that I have taken with either my Canon AE-1 (film) or my Canon DSLR. A lot of them are of people I know, some are random shots outside on the streets of NYC and nearly all of them are completely candid, which I really love.

I shall be adding to this as time goes by, or maybe I will make a second set, as this one is already quite substantial!

Photography: Bushwick 2009-2012

Roof ViewJefferson_StBiker_BushwickTroutman_Bushwick_EtchingsStatementDesolate
BallparkCommunity gardenPost BlizzardBeauty for SadnessHappinessFrom Above
My Herb GardenDefaced WallBushwick RoadYou Must UniteMichelle and the TagsEvergreen & Troutman
Evergreen & FlushingDown BelowDeserted EvergreenClothes on a wireBlue & GreyPure Blue Sky

Bushwick, a set on Flickr.

After posting the Harlem collection the other day, and after a comment from a friend about how I should build up the collection over time, I started thinking about all of the photos I have taken of my current neighbourhood, Bushwick, over the past four years I have lived here. I started really getting into photography back in 2009, mainly because the sheer amount of street art in my neighbourhood kept catching my eye, and I felt the need to start capturing it on camera.
Bushwick is a strange neighbourhood, part family, part warehouses. There are some very old townhouses and a lot of abandoned buildings, a lot of churches and a lot of noise, unless you live down one of the quieter streets. Over the past 4 years I have seen the area change rapidly, new bars, new restaurants, more organic supermarkets, new coffee shops, new people moving in, but it has still retained the same atmosphere and rents (hopefully, but I hear that a new music venue is going to be opening in Bushwick soon, so I'm sure that will effect rents soon enough).
I know it's not the safest, or the cleanest, or the prettiest neighbourhood in NYC, but it works for me. I don't see myself moving away from here, not anytime soon in any case.

These photos were taken over the past 3 years with different cameras, both digital and film (Canon AE-1 (one from 1980 and one from 1978; Canon Rebel DSLR; Holga). I know that I have posted some of these in other collections before, but feel like they belong in this one too.

Bushwick on Wikipedia

Photography: Harlem etc

Adam Clayton Powell Jr125th StreetHarlem Mural 4Abandoned 2Shoes in a TreeChurch and Building
Ballroom_ThriftstoreMan and his CartStore FrontsStreet ViewHarlem Mural 3Harlem Mural 2
Burnt Out BuildingBrownstonesBronxAnother Baptist Church 3Another Baptist Church 2Harlem Mural 1
Another Baptist ChurchBowlingCapital One Mural 2Capital One Mural 1House of All FaithsBaptist Church

Harlem etc, a set on Flickr.

When I moved to NYC 7 years ago it was the first time I had ever set foot in the city. After a short-lived sublet on the Lower East Side I found a much more affordable sublet in Spanish Harlem, on First Ave, between 119th and 120th. The first time I was actually living alone, without roommates, my own tiny one bedroom with a little concrete backyard. At the time it was still pretty much affordable, albeit not the safest neighbourhood in the city. I never had a problem though, the guys who were always hanging out on my stoop looked out for me, the deli next door picked up my deliveries and the only time the walk to the subway was a problem was after my first NYC blizzard during the Winter Olympics in 2006.
Needless to say, I ended up moving to a much more expensive tiny box studio in the West Village 10 months later, and never really went back up there to visit. I decided to make the most of the beautiful weather today and made my way up to 125th Street to take some photos...
The place has changed a lot, but is still so similar at the same time... There are new shops, a couple of Starbucks, a Target and a TD Bank; but it's still as loud, interesting and diverse as it used to be. Nowhere else have I seen a car rushing down the street with a guy holding a megaphone and blasting music, making the whole street stop, clap and start dancing. I suppose it's cleaner and safer, but still as energetic and colourful. I wonder how much small one bedroom apartments go for up there now...

I then made my way downtown and took a few shots of the new Occupy Wall St terrain in Union Sq, and my favourite church, Grace Church, on Broadway and 11th St.

Photography: Rutland, England, March 2012

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Rutland, England 03/2012, a set on Flickr.

I really do come from a beautiful place in England. The smallest county, Rutland, located between Lincolnshire, Cambridgeshire and Leicestershire. Tiny villages, rolling hills, old, old buildings, village pubs... Here are a lot of photos that I took on my trip. I'll add descriptions over the next few days as I haven't had a chance to do so today.

Enjoy <3