Friday, July 18, 2008

5/17 shots

NW Corner of Driggs Street and Manhattan Avenue, 
Williamsburg, Brooklyn

Brooklyn was always the cool borough in New York City, but lately the influx of money, coupled with so much real-estate being turned over in hopes of much larger profits has been shocking. This particular corner is one of the best examples of the gentrification in Williamsburg. On one corner a brick building with peeling paint holds a sign that appears to be older than the average age of the neighborhood population. Around noon, the establishment is full of patrons eating and drinking out in front. By night at the northeast corner, people chat with cigarettes in hand while their drinks grow less robust inside. And of course, at the southeast corner, people watch it all from their new apartment's floor to ceiling windows. Once again, the coolness of a neighborhood is attempting to bring in people who pay to be cool, and yet rather than living in such a lifestyle, they seclude themselves in private fortresses.

SE Corner of Driggs Street and Manhattan Avenue, 
Williamsburg, Brooklyn

It was getting past late, and on to early, in other words, it was morning. I hadn't realized until I stopped at my favorite pick-up dinner, that the sun had already been progressing upwards in the sky. Everybody had gone home already for the most part, but I lucked out and got a fare all the way to Far Rockaway, Queens, or somewhere in the area. 


When you get this far out to the limits of New York's borders, things start changing, and it doesn't look like the New York so many are familiar with. The Rockaways are a set of neighborhoods on a finger peninsula, on one side of the peninsula, the lower New York Bay, pretty much the Atlantic Ocean. On the other side is the smaller Jamaica Bay, where I have visited a bunch of times to look at wildlife.  

Averne, Queens

A smooth dark freshly paved road surrounded by new, I'm assuming affordable, houses. Seemingly miles from civilization, but not a mile away, the elevated subway line:

Averne, Queens

However, it wasn't running that day, the subway doesn't always run as predicted here.

Averne, Queens

On either end of the main road, the salt water is only steps away, and the breeze is strong. The Housing, affordable, due to the inconvenience of travel.

Holland, Queens

Broad Channel is a small patch of houses on stilts in between the Rockaways and Howard Beach. A lot of fishing here. 

Broad Channel, Queens

Cross Bay Bridge, Jamaica Bay, Queens

Starbucks, Howard Beach, Queens

This Starbucks Coffee house may look common to you, but for this New Yorker, to see a Starbucks in its own suburban house with parking on either side is super rare. So with such easy parking I had to stop, go to the restroom of course, and then order the smallest coffee I could.

South Conduit Boulevard, Ozone Park, Queens

Yes folks, still making my way back to Manhattan, and not a building in sight.

Van Wyck Expressway,  Jamaica, Queens

So the lack of train service to the Rockaways, meant at least one person's route to JFK Airport was derailed. This is what he told me when he got in my cab at Columbus Circle, so I got a quick trip to JFK, thanks to the unreliable Metropolitan Transit Authority. In all truth, the subway system is way better than it was, but there is always room for improvement. Above the Van Wyck is a monorail designed to transfer from both the 'A' line, and the 'E' line and bring people to the airport for a fee of another 3 bucks I think. The problem with this, is that people going to the airport would much rather a direct transit, without any transfers. 



Anonymous said...

OK I've looked at these before but I have to ask, that first one's a transformer! cool!

NYC taxi photo said...

the two buildings are across the street from each other.

shelby marie skumanich said...

i really like 6 and 12. i'm into the photos that are of far reaching places of nyc.

also, i can guess the answer at this but how do you feel about the dashboard/border of the windsheild in the photos? i don't think it's bad; i'm just curious as how you feel about it. i mean: i think it gives context and immediacy to the pictures which is good.

NYC taxi photo said...

Ahh thanks very much for the comments, as this day is sucking financially. Yes, I like the interior of the cab for context, and still try to take that perfect composition without the cab as a frame just to show I can, if anybody thinks the car frame is crutch.

I guess by immediacy you mean the viewer can connect more with each image. This brings back memories, I remember my senior class would often talk about this.

But Immediacy, reminds me of the story of Eugene Richards, and how when photographing his wife, the camera brought him closer, but at the same time, created a safety wall for him to avoid getting to emotional.
Usually the photographer can't help but feel Separate from their environment when they take pictures. They separate themselves from their subject, no matter how much they try to engage with it when they put the camera in front of their face and create a wall. But with this there is never a wall, I am always actively engaged with the environment, and to have a cab frame that leads the viewer in to a big New York universe is totally, well, engaging I guess, but I lack a better word...

or maybe it's so simple...

pictures of new york, from one of the most recognized icons of New York. How New York is that?!! that is just totally awesome!

yeah so I digress, to the point where this should be a blog itself.

The problem that many found with my pictures is that they didn't have enough people, and confusion, or dirty New York shit in it. But I think we can both agree, that photographs should be taken for the purpose of enlightening people towards all the elements of the subject matter. The barren wasteland, the emptiness, though rare, it's all there, it all exists in this always changing world, and, maybe the cab just helps add proof that it is all still in New York City.

Sorry to digress everyone, Shelby, thank you so much for the comment, I am glad to hear that the pictures are still holding the same punch that they were a year ago. that paragraph before was more just to defend against the other group of college kids that didn't get it, and wanted people in the pictures, not spaces.

shelby marie skumanich said...

pictures of new york, from one of the most recognized icons of New York. How New York is that?!! that is just totally awesome!

which is why it works!!!

people and dirty new york shit are just crutches people lean on, i think. they want to see those things because those things say "city" to them, they say "new york city" to them. they're relying on their own reinforced media cliches of what a city should be instead of opening their eyes to what a city actually is and what it means to people that inhabit it.

and what the shit is with everyone wanting people in photographs that don't belong to them? what the fuck is that about?

i mean immediacy as in the photographs puts the viewer into that moment, there's no ignoring where one is when looking at the photograph.

but i'm sure that moment and the immediacy of the moment is much much different for the person making the picture.

i think that the context of the cab could be misconstrued as a crutch to make the images about new york or of new york but for the most part i think it works with the pictures not against them. obviously, everything is about editing.

but does editing really matter on the internet? i don't think i'll go there right now.

but hey! i think you should make your response into a blog post. i think you should talk about it, even if it verges on being too photosophical.