Sunday, February 22, 2009

Waiting in Grand Central Station

Some time ago, while on my way to New Jersey to photograph a dance performance of the Mosaic Dance Theater Company, I came upon this scene in Grand Central Station. Turns out that while the fellow was waiting for someone he was determined to have some fun in putting on this little show.
I thought it was so cool I had to drop what I was doing and pull the camera out that was buried in all my traveling gear.
What was also amusing and interesting was the reaction and non- reactions of the passerbys on their busy way. Most people just glanced and walked by without a second look. Some were actually confused for a short time wondering why some of us were watching the "line" and then they got it. It was really amazing at how long it took some to realize what this was and why it was a scene worthy of stopping and taking in even for a couple of minutes out of one's hectic schedule.
The most amusing thing was when at least two persons had stopped and stood behind him! One was a woman with an ipod in her ear caught up in her music or podcast had walked up behind him and stood there for at least 10 seconds or so perhaps thinking it was an information or ticket line. As soon as she looked ahead and realized, she was flush with embarassment and scurried off the line much like a cat that slips up after a jump and recovers with grace and dignity.
The other was a young man with a backpack looking much like a tourist. Once he realized, he stepped off the line and stood off to the side watching amused and probably amused by his own actions as well. It was a cool little moment on my way to a shoot. . .

(click on images for larger views)

Friday, February 20, 2009

the visitor

I have had the pleasure of knowing writer/poet S.David. His writings are very interesting and entertaining and I would suggest you visit his site .
Over the course of some time, he has been moved to write about at least four of my works. One of them being "the visitor". (shown above)
Visit his blog to read the writing about this piece.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Happy Valentines Day . . .The Red Show!

NYcreates put on a wonderful three day showing of Fine art and crafts from some of the finest talent around at the Brooklyn Historic Society of which I had the pleasure to take part in. Thanks to everyone who made it out to see me and say hello. I was especially delighted with all the warm and positive feedback about my works.

A special event that took place at The Red Show was the Red velvet cake bake-off which included some of the finest bakeries in Brooklyn, N.Y.
My vote for best looking cake went to Sweet Melissas, but in my opinion they were all winners here.

The best cake award went to LadyBird bakeries entry. Judging this magnificent bake off was
Brooklyn's Borough president, Marty Markowitz and John Strohbeen of the Brooklyn Waterfront Artists Coalition.
A great time was had by all.

Here are some of the fantastic super delicious Red Velvet cakes!!!

Friday, February 6, 2009

Photo adventure weekend!

I'm really looking forward to this weekend. I'm finally going to get out to do some serious photography with another photog friend of mine. Seems I've been stuck in the house tied up with various things and had not been able to get out and shoot much of this winter. Winter is really my favorite season of the year, next to Autumn as far as photography and shooting outside goes. The skies are ominous and blue/grey, the sun is low in the sky creating beautiful lighting at practically anytime of the day. Locations are quiet and not crowded with people usually, and thats the way I like it. I rarely include people in my scenes. I like to express loneliness, tranquility, abandonment, isolation but in a pleasing and comforting sort of way.
Pleasantly strange. . . I've been told.
So, for a couple of days we'll be at my friend Dawn Petrliks place just over the Catskill mountains in New York State. She and her husband bought a farm up there with a good piece of land and the scenery is just stunning. She plans on using it as an artists retreat, and possibly a gallery as well. She has several buildings on the land including a cool looking old barn, which happens to be one of my favorite subjects. Dawn and I became friends as we exhibited together with the Brooklyn Waterfront Artists Coalition (BWAC).

Dawn is a super talented artist whose works I admire very much. I have a couple of pieces or her work hanging in my studio. One titled "dreamer" is a sculpture (Shown at top) thats absolutely fantastic and is hanging on my wall next to a window. The natural lighting brings out the shapes and contours and always looks a bit different at various times of the day as the lighting changes.I've had the pleasure of knowing Dawn and getting to see some of her works in the makings at her studio in Redhook, Brooklyn. My friend Larry and I will be leaving early Sunday morning and spending a couple of days up there in the area. I'm truly excitied to be able to get to work on some new pieces. Hopefully I'll have a bunch of fresh work to show in the coming weeks.

Here are a few photos from Dawns Studio in Brooklyn. More of Dawns work can been seen on her site at DawnRobyn.

A slide show of her exhibit "the lonely death of esmin green" can be viewed at my site.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Mixed Emotions

In my neighborhood, there is a young Chinese girl that walks around all day with a large suitcase on wheels. Inside are perhaps a few hundred bootleg DVD's of all the latest movies that are out. She rolls her goods around to most every store in the area flashing a cold smile and in very broken English saying "DVD, you like DVD?" I see her when I'm in the laundrymat, when I'm in BurgerKing, at Dunkin Donuts and always along the street. She never approaches me as she does other people because I guess she can tell I'm not going to be a customer. It really pisses me off when I see people swarm around her ready to buy something if she has what they want. That really disappoints me. They don't seem to get the bigger picture. This is part of our problem. Stores that employ workers, perhaps relatives or children of the very people buying this stuff are forced to either lay people off or go out of business. These stores not only employ people, but also pay taxes to which help pay for our cities services such as Fire, Police, and Education. The money given to her for this cheap crap goes to supporting other illegals and i'm sure some gets sent back home to China to provide for her family there as well. As if China needs any more of our money. . .
The other day I saw a cop on a scooter arresting someone on the street,. As I got closer I saw it was the DVD girl. I initially was very happy to see this. I was also surprised in that I never would have thought that a cop would spend any time busting her. I was happy to see that they were cracking down on this even at the low level. While being handcuffed, she looked quite embarassed and nervous as she was looking around at all who was watching this. I figured this might have been the first time she was busted. As the tears began to stream from her eyes, it came upon me. I felt sad for her. As much as I did not like what she was doing, I felt that perhaps she was doing this as part of a deal to whoever brought her here. I couldn't blame her for wanting to be here.
Not much of anything will happen to her I suspect and the sad part my be that she has less fear of getting caught for anything other than having her stock of DVD's confiscated.
The real blame lies with the people that buy from her. Typically, people will buy from her and any other bootleg or blackmarket venue that can save them a few dollars. Then, when the economy is suffering and people are losing their jobs and services are being cut they blame the government and whoever happens to be in power.
I've got mixed emotions about the DVD girl. . .

My Birthday

My birthday was February 1. It came and went without any fanfare. When I was younger, I mean real young like 5,6,7 years old I couldn't wait for my birthday to come along. It meant friends over, cake, gifts and perhaps some undesireable add-ons like punishment afterwards for not behaving. . .sometimes.

Now, I dread when it approaches. It means getting another year older, period. It also seems to come along more frequently as the years get on. . .whats with that! Why could it not come along more frequently when presents and cake was to be had. . .jeeeez. Someone up there is toying with us!

Well, I have also learned that the little things in life seem much more rewarding and gratifying in my later years. . perhaps there is some balance here. I had received a phone call from my daughter early in the day, as I do on every birthday. Her birthday wish was worth more than any toy or cake I ever had or ate when I was a kid. (sometimes I played with my cake, and ate the toys. . .hence the punishement thing ) I was also very touched to receive some birthday wishes from my Facebook friends, some who I have not been in touch with for over 25 years. . .wow.

Later on after Christinas call, my son Kyle gave me a call and was excited to wish me a happy birthday. . .you would have thought it was his day. Well, that really amounted to what I considered to be a truly wonderful day. It reminded me of a photograph i took a few weeks ago and titled "the little things in life" It really is the little things in life that make everything worthwhile.