Monday, March 28, 2011

The life of the party

This Friday was one of the worst days I have had in a long time, up until the party. My friends, with the aid of Moustache, helped me to be goofy for awhile and forget about serious things. I laughed until I had tears, and on that particular night, I needed it. Thank you friends, and thank you Moustache.

Moustache and blank canvas

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Big City, Small City

January 2010
Amadu stopped me in the street one day in January, and began talking to me. After a few minutes, I realized that he is a local celebrity. He talks with half the people that pass him by, and works all over the neighborhood. Even though I have left Chinatown, I try to come by and hang out with Amadu for a little while each time I'm around. It is beginning to become ritual, to talk about how nobody else helps to keep the street clean, the neighborhood, work, change. Amadu also poses for tourists as the Statue of Liberty. I took a picture of him 14 months ago, before we became friends. I was stunned when I realized this, since New York City can seem so big sometimes, and then again so small.

Small, yet personal relationships are beginning to have an impact on my photography. Usually I take the "grab and go" approach to taking photographs of people on the street, avoiding all personal interaction. It has been a new experience for me to make a connection before I bring out the camera, that establishment of trust that takes the right moment to ask for a picture. It wouldn't matter if Amadu had said no, but in fact I couldn't get him to just be natural and not pose! His interaction with the camera was almost mechanical for him. Striking peace signs, sweeping at half speed, and making sure we were in good light for the portrait.

Monday, March 7, 2011

Sal's Barber Shop

Welcome to Little Italy, in case you have not had the chance to visit via blogs past. As I have previously spoken, it can be rare to get a true experience of this neighborhood. Saturday proved otherwise for me, when Lisa and I were invited into Sal's Barber Shop several times throughout our visit next door, at the Italian American Museum. We got the grand tour of both Sal's and the museum, learning a lot of personal histories throughout the day. Lisa is working on a project in this neck of the wood, and soon to come will be a quick collection from inside the museum. Have a seat, stay for a trim!