Archive for the ‘NYC Today’ Category

The Tree Comes To Town (in the wee small hours of the morning…)

In NYC Today on November 7, 2014 at 6:46 am

The 2014 Rockefeller Christmas Tree made its way into the city well after midnight November 7, 2014.

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The NYPD escorted the 13-ton tree to Rockefeller Center arriving at 5th avenue around 2:00am, after a 155-mile journey from Danville, Pennsylvania.

The towering 85-foot Norway spruce donated by a central Pennsylvania family will remain on the flatbed of this 18 wheeler until daylight, when it is welcomed to
the final home on the plaza.

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Until next time.


adventure is life, live it! ®











Summer Virtual Blog Tour

In nyc photographer, NYC Today on August 23, 2014 at 8:31 pm

It always amazes me that a concept or idea, when enough people get behind it, becomes an awe-inspiring reality.  My good friend  and respected colleague Kevin Michael Reed, asked me to join just such an idea.  It took me a few weeks before I was able to fully understand how extraordinary this idea really is, as it comes from the genuine support of fellow artists doing what they believe in.  As in any successful community, celebrating each of our differences makes us stronger as a whole.


So let’s get started!

First I would like to introduce and celebrate Kevin Michael Reed, the artist that invited me to the tour.

Kevin is an award winning fashion photographer and cinematographer; most recently his film ANDROGYNY is now an Official Selection in the Chelsea Indie Film Festival! November 20th in Chelsea NY. (That’s now THREE film festivals that this film has been selected for!)

I’ve known Kevin for about 3 years-we met as new members of the ASMPNY Board.  It’s been an amazing journey since.  Kevin is talented beyond words.  Whatever he creates is truly a work of art, a style that is unique and precious.  Over the past year he has been dedicated and focused to take his work to new levels, including a step into the realm of video story-telling.  The word “admire” is no-where near what his work has inspired in me, but his dedication and focus demonstrate that perseverance, passion and hard work can surely make dreams come true.  I wish nothing but success to this talented artist and thank him for taking me on this Virtual Blog Tour!


Self Interview

The next part of the virtual blog tour is a self interview.

I’ve been a professional photographer since 2006-a second career if you will.  Through exploration, I have found that I am drawn in 2 directions:  Documentary and Architectural Photography.  I thought these 2 were diametrically opposed, but the more I delve into each I find they are more and more connected.  The beauty of this journey is never over.  However the work I do for myself, the documentary story telling, is where I find myself heading more and more.  There is so much to discover/uncover/explore that as my confidence grows I am willing to take greater risks to tell the story unfolding in front of me.

1. What am I currently working on?
I currently have 3 projects on deck.

  • The Summer Solstice Project, celebrating summer in NYC.
  • NYC Strength celebrating the men and women that work behind the scenes rebuilding our city infrastructure.
  • The Domino Sugar Factory; a beautiful old building that will be luxury condominiums within the next few years.

2. How does my work differ from others of its genre?
I find that I am really intrigued by history.  When I look through the lens I am capturing a current moment in time, but feel the layers of history that make the circle complete as I stand on that spot wherever it may be.  Before I can complete a story-tell it to its fullest, I need to understand historically what has happened up until that point in time.  The further back I can get, the more interesting the project becomes.

3. Why do I create what I do?
As much fun as it is to use new hardware and software, I find the simplicity of a manual camera (where I hear the film advance each time I shoot a frame) gives me the most satisfaction as an artist.  I embrace the adventure of life and want to share it with the world.  There is so much to discover in my own “back yard”; this is where I currently keep my focus.

4. How does my creative process work?
I hear something in the news or in conversation.  If it has an interesting twist, I’ll put the date on my calendar.  This has become more and more how I approach project.  If I have missed the opportunity in the current year, onto the calendar it goes for the following.  This has been successful for a few of my recent stories:  Elephants heading to Madison Square Garden or Coney Island Polar Bear Swim to name a few.

Last summer after reading an article in the New York Times about Broad Channel being one of the hardest hit areas by Hurricane Sandy, I visited the Rockaway’s multiple times to understand the destruction of that community and how they were rebuilding.

I’ll shoot rolls and rolls of Tri-X when I’m out exploring.  Then it’s off to the lab for developing.  From there I scan every negative. Depending on what I see on the contact sheet will determine the size of the final project/story.  If I feel that what I have is incomplete for the story, I’ll go back and shoot a second or third time.  When I started the Summer Solstice Project I was surprised to see 7 years of images in my archives of negatives.  Once the frames are chosen for the project, the “digital dark room” edits begin.  From there it’s finalizing the images and creating the flow for the story.


Three More Artists


 Gail Mooney

Gail Mooney - Beijing China

Gail Mooney

I met Gail a few years ago through ASMP; she is a National Board Member.  She is incredibly talented as well as supportive for the Photographic Community both with education and artistic rights.

Gail along with her partner Thomas Kelly, run Kelly/Mooney Productions, a visual communications company in New Jersey.  Gail has 30 years of experience in still photography, shooting for international magazines, major corporations and advertising agencies. Gail started shooting 35mm motion footage for stock in 1996, and in 1999  started producing and shooting video projects. Since then, her company has become fully integrated with multi-media. She has also produced three short documentaries: Freedom’s Ride – a story about two diverse groups of high school students retracing the Civil Rights Movement of the 1960’s,  The Delta Blues Musicians and Through the Hearts and Hands of Children –  a film about the New Jersey Youth Symphony.

Gail sees many opportunities for still shooters to expand into video and feels that this is just the beginning of how technology will transform how we, as visual communicators will deliver our message in the future.


Mitch Waxman


Mitch Waxman

I learned about Mitch through my work with WEEKS Marine.  My research into how the Rivers and Harbor of NYC impact the environment and economy, brought me to Mitch.  He is passionate about his Creek; he keeps us updated on a regular basis and speaks out on behalf of the area.

Mitch Waxman was raised in Brooklyn, attended the School of Visual Arts in Manhattan, and worked for many years as a comic book writer and artist. He also worked in advertising production and as a photo retouching specialist for several advertising agencies. He has always had a certain fascination with historical material.

After a health scare several years ago, medical personnel advised him that he should start running to improve his health. Having grown up, as aforementioned, in Brooklyn – Mitch cannot run unless something is chasing him so he began to walk the earth and brought the camera along to keep things interesting. Soon, he found the occluded reality of the Newtown Creek and hasn’t left the place since.

Mitch started the Newtown Pentacle website in 2009 to document his adventures along the Newtown Creek(and in the greater harbor and city beyond). He has served the City of New York as a Parade Marshall three times, has been named the Newtown Creek Alliance’s group historian, is a Steering Committee member of the Working Harbor Committee, and offers regular walking, bus and boat tours of the Newtown Creek Watershed. He resides in Astoria, Queens, with his wife Catherine and their little dog.

His photography and unique point of view have attracted no small amount of attention, and Mitch has appeared in several documentaries about the Creek and is often quoted in news articles about the subject.


Frank Rocco ( & Barry Rosenthal (

Both of these men do not have blogs, but I think are totally worth sharing with you.  Both are dedicated artists; they set their sights to make things happen.  And they have inspired me with their passion, vision and focus.

Frank is the President of ASMPNY and puts his heart and soul into making sure that the photographic community has current information-education to keep members abreast of the ever changing business.  He is a talented Fashion Photographer, and balances his time between his work and the organization.

Barry is a fine art photographer that focuses his work on “found trash”.  He stayed the course with his art, and began showing in galleries.  From there his work continued on a path where more and more people became aware of his vision.  He has been on the cover of National Geographic, featured in the New York Times, and continues a journey to greater and greater success.




Until next time.


adventure is life, live it! ®



A Day at the Beach

In NYC History, nyc photographer, NYC Today on June 30, 2014 at 6:08 pm

I visited the Rockaways first in 2007 and again last summer.  Here is a Movie Short sharing these moments, including bull dozers on the beach during the recovery efforts post Hurricane Sandy.



Have a Happy 4th of July!


Until next time.


adventure is life, live it! ®


Testing a New Lens

In nyc photographer, NYC Today on April 16, 2014 at 1:58 am

Today I updated my equipment with a new Canon lens.  Tonight it was snowing.  Time to take it on a test run.

Some flaring happened as the lens got more and more water on it’s surface.  Interesting effect.

Until next time.


adventure is life, live it! ®



Fort Tilden Part Four: The Return to Civilization

In historic places, NYC History, nyc photographer, NYC Today on April 4, 2014 at 9:07 pm

As I walked back to my starting point, all I could hear was gravel crunching under my feet. It was completely quiet.  I stopped to reload film one more time so I was ready to shoot the 2 buildings passed on the way to the tower.

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The first was hidden in vines and brush.  Somehow the graffiti artists were able to get deep inside this broken down structure.  I wonder how long ago….
(These buildings were used for magazines when originally constructed.)

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The second was a little more accessible,  just needed to navigate overgrowth, rocks and branches.092913 Fort Tilden Rocka381_1

When I poked my head into the empty space I was transformed by what I saw.

Overhead the roof was all but gone.  Underfoot the floor was dirt and weeds.  And the block walls were covered with graffiti.  It was beautiful.  Man and nature were collaborating in a true work of art.

Until next time.


adventure is life, live it! ®


Fort Tilden Part Three: Views from the Tower

In historic places, NYC History, nyc photographer, NYC Today on April 4, 2014 at 8:48 pm

When I encounter something never seen before, I become a little unsettled.  I think that is true for most people.  Questions that came to mind quickly were: what the heck was this thing and what hid behind its walls?  (see prior post.)  Further research shows this is actually Battery Harris, a gun battery used during the war/s.

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As I approached the stairs, a man was climbing down from the tower, so I stepped aside to let him pass.  I wanted this space all to myself.

WOW.  Incredible.  To the East was Long Island.  To the South the Atlantic.  To the West New York Harbor and New Jersey.  To the North Coney Island and Manhattan.  And directly below, 173 feet below, dunes and natural vegetation.

I stayed up here for about 30 minutes.  A cruise ship was leaving the harbor.  Tankers were waiting at anchorage.  Pleasure boats were cruising in and out of Jamaica Bay.  And I had this place all to myself.

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At some point a father and son started the journey up the steps and I used this as my cue to head out.  Plus I needed to get those other shots before the sun finally set.  And my bravery was starting to waver just a bit…


Until next time.


adventure is life, live it! ®


Fort Tilden Part Two: The Mile Hike on the Forbidden Road

In historic places, NYC History, nyc photographer, NYC Today on April 4, 2014 at 8:17 pm

092913 Fort Tilden Rocka310_1Abandoned buildings, an old “watch” tower with amazing views of the city & the ocean continued to haunt my thoughts.  What was out there?  I usually play by the rules, but as I get older it seems these rules need to be broken; curiosity got the best of me.

Having discovered the Rockaway Artist Alliance on my last trip, I submitted work to one of their upcoming shows.  To my delight they accepted 4 pieces into Artspash, a month-long show in the studios at Fort Tilden.  As a participant, we were asked to spend time at the show to answer questions for the spectators.

A Sunday afternoon in early September, I volunteered my time.  At 4:30pm it was time take that hike into the unknown.  The sunlight and shadows were amazing and I was feeling brave.

092913 Fort Tilden Rocka292I know that sounds a bit ridiculous me living in the city.  Walking the streets of Manhattan even at 4:00am is much different from walking into the woods where everything is silent.

Here are the justified reasons why I had a touch of fear in my belly.  My cellphone reception was minimal.  I was walking alone with my camera in unfamiliar territory that was off-limits (meaning no one would be patrolling here).  I didn’t have a map and I didn’t tell anyone where I was heading.  There were abandoned buildings along this road and the trail took me in about a mile from civilization.  Other than that, everything was just fine.

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Capturing a great image was the driving force so I climbed over the fence into the forbidden territory.  As I walked I began to relax taking everything in around me.  The shadows and shimmers from the sunlight were giving me so many photographic opportunities, it was incredible.

A fork in the road and a building.  What to do.  I was in search of the tower and would revisit this building on my way out.


Birds flew over head, the sun was beginning to dip in the west.  Passing another abandoned building I noticed it was covered in graffiti.  This would be another great shot on the way back.

A bit further and a clearing came into view.  Then I saw this massive, strange cement structure.  I was looking for an open ranger/fire tower, one like I remember from childhood.  No wonder I couldn’t see this in the distance.  This tower was built into a hill with vegetation giving it cover.  During wartime, this was a gun battery known as Battery Harris.

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I had arrived.  It was time to climb to the top.



Until next time.


adventure is life, live it! ®


Fort Tilden Part One: The Public Space

In historic places, NYC History, NYC Today on April 4, 2014 at 7:40 pm


As I walked around the grounds of Fort Tilden that were “open” to the public a few things circled in my mind.  This space is so vast; what went on here and why all these randomly placed buildings?

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Some were made of wood, some of brick.  Some were in use, some appeared to be empty for decades.  Every once in a while a parks department vehicle would drive by.


073113_iphone 5_4161 copyA chapel stood in the center of it all; eerie shapes appeared through the windows as if they were ghosts.  At the entrance was a very peculiar sign:






At this point I really had no idea what I stumbled upon as children were playing soccer and softball in the open fields.  In the distance day campers were doing something with paint.  And across the road from where they played were people working in the community garden ensuring those large sunflowers would grow to their full height.

073113_iphone 5_4060 copyWhen the ranger drove by again, I stopped him and began asking my questions.

  •  Did the chapel ever open?  No, in fact it had been closed for years due to asbestos.
  • Why is the beach closed; will it open again soon?  It would not open for a while due to the artillery that washed ashore from Hurricane Sandy.
  • What was that amazing old metal building in the distance?  He told me it was an old artillery building and that most of the current destruction came from Sandy.

When I asked him if I could walk around, he told me only in the designated area’s.  Everything else was restricted.

Hmmmm….what was this place?

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Joyous sounds were coming from the children at camp, so I walked over to discover this program was run by the Rockaway Artist Alliance.  The RAA had 2 studio’s in these old military buildings; they worked with artists near and far.  The councilors told me that beyond the fence to the west, was an old “watch” tower used when Fort Tilden was a military base.  It was 173 feet high, with amazing views.  But it was “off-limits” according to the park.

I thanked them for their time and information and continued walking up to the beach where I witnessed the destruction from the storm.

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Until next time.


adventure is life, live it! ®

Fort Tilden in Five Parts

In historic places, NYC History, nyc photographer, NYC Today on April 4, 2014 at 7:30 pm

Today my post comes to you in 5 parts.  It continues the journey deeper into the Rockaways uncovering some hidden gems and forgotten spaces that have been abandoned by man and rescued by nature.  It also explores a section of beach that has been impacted by nature and has not yet been returned to man.

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Over the summer and into early fall of 2013, I returned to understand and document the impact Hurricane Sandy had to this area.  More and more I became intrigued by the history and the stories the locals shared.

I hope you enjoy the journey:


Until next time.


adventure is life, live it! ®



Strolling the Boulevard

In NYC Today on February 2, 2014 at 5:35 pm


Today is Super Bowl Sunday.  (Superb Owl Day-Steven Colbert…)  The game is being played in East Rutherford, NJ or New York City WEST.  At game time the temperature should be in the low 40’s.

New York City and New Jersey have been preparing for this grand event for months and set pre-game celebrations in motion a week before the big game. GMC created the Super Bowl Boulevard, closing Broadway from 47th to 34th Street, Herald Square in front of Macy’s.

For the most part I am not a sports fan. However I do hold season tickets to the Yankees, I love being in the stadium where all that energy lives.  Any game live of any sport is always a kick to see.

The sensationalism and excesses that the Super Bowl generates, I tend to ignore. Even here in my fair city I have been unphased by all that is going on.

BUT as a photographer I am always drawn to “once in a lifetime” opportunities; I would be remiss if I let this pass by without one image.

So what better day than THE day to immerse myself.

At 7:45am I arrived in Herald Square. The sun was rising and the streets had just a few people wandering about. I scanned the scene and noticed quite a bit of activity by the tented area. After inquiring, I learned “The Boulevard” had transported folks to another place all week, but its’ time was over. By 12:00pm it would be a faint memory.

Here is what I saw:

Until next time.


adventure is life, live it! ®




Happy Ground Hog Day!