Thursday, February 28, 2008

God plays here tonight

So I was at Madison Square Garden this morning.
Checking out areas where one of my clients will put up 
advertising stuff that I'm supposed to design.
God's crew was there.
Setting up the stage for tonight's concert.
Eric Clapton. And Steve Winwood.
So I haven't met God in person, 
but at least I spoke to one of his crew members.
The closest to greatness I'll ever come I guess.
The organ belongs to Steve.
Eric's guitars weren't there yet.

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

New York wall art

New York is digital.
Times square is pack full of giant screens with moving images.
And if it's not moving it's digitally printed for sure.
The old art of painting billboards are behind us.
Although still there are some huge murals around the city.
One just north of Penn Station. 
A giant wall, regularly re-painted by hand. 
There's another one on the south side of Houston Street.
Probably a few others as well.
And then there are all those old signs painted 
high and low on brick walls around the city.
Some fading and peeling after years of neglect.
Many advertising brands that no longer exist.
Give me a huge budget so I can photograph them all before they disappear.
Some will last a while still as they're fairly newly applied.
Garages around town still hawk their services through paintings on their walls.
I will try and post a few of those in the coming weeks. Whenever I walk by something photographable.
Excuse me for taking the liberty to crop them when I so feel like. 
By being selective a new piece of art appears.

Monday, February 25, 2008

Playing or not?

The basketball court in Spring Street, SoHo, New York, a cold February day.
No ball, no play.
Only shadow play.
Which is exactly how i feel about blogging most of the time.
If you don't write about famous people, gossip, or give some expert advice in some field, there seems to be no reason for blogging.
It's just a way to publish that is so easy that anyone with access to a computer can do it.
No need for expensive printing presses, ink and paper.
Keep masturbating.
Play your shadow game.
I don't know how many more times I will bother quite honestly.
I take photographs for my own pleasure.
I share some of them this way. 
With no particular agenda. 
Other than proving to myself that I have enough discipline to do this day after day.
Who cares?

Friday, February 22, 2008

snow in NY

Winter in NY is weird.
Just when you think the winter is over it hits.
It always does. 
Shouldn't come as a surprise.
The day before it was spring.
Sort of.
12 hours later winter.
It's off and on.
Today it's on.

look closer

How far do you have to go to find 
something worthy of a photograph?

Some people travel the world to find things to snap.
I do too.
Others find their subjects next to where they are. 
I do too.
For someone in China your kitchen is a very faraway place.
Very exotic.
And when I'm traveling I've found 
that I am more often than not interested 
in the small things. The everyday stuff. 
The things that have be become all too familiar 
to the eyes closest to them.
When I come to a new location for a job 
I always try to shoot something immediately.
The first impression.
Because after a surprisingly short while it gets very familiar. 
That's when you forget to include things that might in fact be very interesting to other eyes.
Or revealing to those who have become too familiar.
So here's a bowl left 
on the kitchen table last night 
in new morning light.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Road crossing

With my head bowed I found this classic shape in the street.
A rusty metal sheet covering a big hole. A cross cut out.
Somewhere in the Greenwich Village.
Some kind of work going on under there.
At some point the cross-hole seems to have been taped over.
The cross has always scared me a little. Or more than a little to be honest.
But not as much if the bars are equally long.
As in the Red Cross, or the Swiss flag.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

New York night profile

For no one in particular.
Maybe something comes up.
It's a slow evening.
Not that it was supposed to be anything but.
Maybe someone comes by. 
Somebody he knows.
He checks around.
Not looking for anyone in particular.
No glances at the watch.
No interest in the people getting out of the cabs stopping. 
Just looking around. Hanging out.
Maybe something comes up. 
Not that it ever does really.
If you can make it New York you can make it anywhere.
But not tonight.

Monday, February 18, 2008

look, there's another building

Just discovered that there are other classic buildings in NY besides the Empire State Building.
That can happen if you look up instead of down.
Tomorrow I might be looking sideways. One never knows what to find.
Never look back however.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

rush hour

Dark early.
I wonder how many of the buildings built today will
stand the test of time?

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

restaurant alley

The quarters around Union Square in Manhattan is awash with eateries.
Some are among the best in town.
Others more assuming. 
The rodent canteen is definitely one of the best in town.
Rats have to book weeks in advance to get into the best alleys.
And they come from as far as New Jersey I've heard.

Monday, February 11, 2008

red, blue and white

Just another angle of that same old building 
that so often seems to appear in my view finder.

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Sex, boobs, and a red hand

Let me make a guess.
This title will pull a thousand percent more
visitors than say "a normal day in the park".

You got caught red-handed. 
Excuse the pun. There IS a red hand in the picture.

I'm sorry if I'm disappointing you with this
stiff mannequin.
On a real girl the dress could possibly evoke sex. Scarcely
on a plastic dummy. Well, I don't know your tastes. 
Neither do I know the dummy.
But she's presumably lame compared to real flesh and blood.
The boobs are smallish so perhaps not to everyone's taste.
Nice legs, if they were real.

Stay tuned. you never know what I may come up with next.

Saturday, February 9, 2008

some guys drive

the train commuters have at least half an hour on a train. more likely an hour. some more. 
add 10 to 20 minutes to get to the train. another 20 after getting into manhattan.
2 hours in the morning, 2 hours back in the evening. 9 to 10 hours in the office.
by car? Add another hour at least in total. tunnel or bridges.

To achieve something in life you have to give life up, if you don't consider a non-life life.
that's new york for you.

that's many a big city in the world.
Why do we do this to ourselves?

Thursday, February 7, 2008

Modern China

The wide asphalted roads are
lined with tired looking people
with gray faces
in worn dark gray clothes
on gray bicycles.

Everything is gray.
The sky. The road.
What once was grass.

We're about an hour and a half
outside of Shanghai.
The uniform gray seemingly never ending suburbs
have given way
to old gray low rise buildings
built with brick that perhaps once were red.
Now gray.

I'm visiting one of the many factories that surround
every big and small city in China.
A small city is a gray city with millions of people.
Mostly gray. Working in factories.

When I was a kid the outside was green
and the inside gray.

Not now.

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

don't miss that train

The last train.
To the suburbs.
Must run.
All aboard.
Four hours sleep.
A quick coffee. Too tired to eat.
Can't miss the train.
Back to Manhattan.

That's the life of millions
of people working in New York.
To afford to work here they can't afford to live here.

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Shanghai charm

Perhaps the most western of the cities of China.
Or at least the most shamelessly commercial.
I'm there frequently.
Each time I try to find a moment for myself and the camera.
Walking the streets of different neighborhoods.

A back-up crash left me losing thousands of images
from China taken over the last couple of years.
Some are left. I didn't save all of them on the same drives thankfully.
It teaches me to have two drives of everything.
Preferrably stored in two different nuclear bomb safe shelters.
Otherwise Murphy will get to it.

This image was taken a cold December morning 2006.
On The Bund, the grand street of old Shanghai.
The new city in the background.
Huangpu river in between.
The banks and insitutions who dominated The Bund of yesteryear
are now turned into hip and upscale restaurants, bars and boutiques.
The streets lined with Bentleys and Ferraris.

But every morning the taichi crowd shows up.
As they always have done.
Good times or not.

Monday, February 4, 2008

There it is again

It's one of those amazing buildings that sneak up
on you almost wherever you're in town.
Actually the only one since the twin towers came down.
The Chrysler building is not as ever-present.

One of the few spots you can't seem to see the building from is next to it.
When you look up from the pavement the only thing you see is a plain rather boring facade of off-white
brick stones with unremarkable windows and no apparent decorations.
The recognizable top floors, the profile, is hidden from view when you stand next to her.

The guy?
Don't know, just one in the mix of the colorful street landscape
that serves as a foreground to the Empire State Building.