mamiya 7ii portra 400
Guess who got to meet a Musician/Film Producer with a business card inscribed with 7 Universal Laws of Peace…uhh, this guy! Introducing Yehuda Freeman, aka “Tefillin Man.” How do I know this, because he stopped me to take his mug as I was strolling through Central Park yesterday with trusty Mr. Hasselblad. Now I’m sure your wondering as I was, what a “Tefillin” is. So I asked our fearless leader for an explanation as I am by no means skilled in the Judaic arts. He jokingly said “an Old World torture device” Sure enough I laughed along with him completely clueless on why that was funny until later on that day when I looked them up, he really wasn’t that far off. But sure enough the real description came…in song form. While strumming his acoustic Gibson, he managed to explain “they are merely a set of small black leather boxes attached to long straps containing scrolls of parchment inscribed with verses from the Torah and are worn on the head and arms by observant Jews during morning prayers.” He was pretty decent.
kodak ektar 100
All of this rain over the past few days really put the kibosh on the most awesome of plans resulting in an epic fail, but they did bring back some very welcome memories of a quaint little city known as Montreal. I first went there with my family around thanksgiving 2009 and loved it. There’s just something about the blatantly gorgeous architecture, the beautiful french people and/or history of it that really embeds itself within your subconscious, so much so that whenever it does rain here in New York, in that moment of clarity I immediately think of Montreal and wonder why I am not there . Sad but true as the metallica song goes.
And so, I leave you with some of those memories from that dreary, occasionally rain soaked weekend in classic black and white. enjoy.
kodak tri-x 400
Friday afternoon was gorgeous here in New York and so like any responsible hard working adult, I took off early and hung out on a hotel rooftop drinking a cocktail. Yup, that quaint little hotel was the James, located on the borders of china town, soho and tribeca. A nice, down to earth counterpart to the regular pretentious spots in that area and even more importantly, the drink prices were shockingly decent. Let the record show I highly condone this sort of behavior.
After viewing this last night I decided it was too awesome and creepy to keep to myself. This is the latest in a series of online viral marketing campaign shorts for the film Prometheus…a Ridley Scott prequel if you will to his masterpiece Alien. In it, Michael Fassbender brilliantly portrays David 8, the latest generation of AI humanoids created by a fictional Weyland Industries capable of feeling a wide array of human characteristics most importantly, emotions. In light of the June release of this film, these videos are sprouting up strategically as a means to bring attention to a sci-fi film with a history that this latest generation of millenials is most likely not aware of…surely a recipe for marketing gold.
the name pretty much says it all…this place has everything you can think of in balloon form. no joke! As I was walking aimlessly through Tribeca, something caught my eye…it was a zebra, then a giraffe, then a donut and a monkey. I just loved the way the animal balloons in particular were all sort of lynched from the awning and ever so gently blowing in the occasional breeze, equal parts disturbing and fun at the same time.
so I finally got my hands on some sweet ilford black and white infrared film and went down to the Brooklyn Botanical Gardens as the weather on Saturday was nothing short of summer. For those that are not familiar with infrared photography or film, it is pretty amazing. Us humans can not see the infrared spectrum because it resides on a wavelength between 700-900 nerdmeters (nanometers) so unless you’re the Predator monster, you are out of luck. Film is usually sensitive to visible light too, so to counter this, an infrared-passing filter has to be used; this lets infrared (IR) light pass through to the camera, but blocks all or most of the visible light spectrum (the filter thus looks black or deep red). Tiffen, Hoya sell these at moderately decent prices. The R72 is a good choice as it will turn your blue skies almost pitch black.
Now the really awesome thing about these films is a notable halation effect or glow often seen in the highlights. Why is that? well, depending on the type of Black and White IR film, the glow or blooming is caused by the absence of an anti-halation layer on the back side of the film. This results in a scattering or blooming around the highlights that would usually be absorbed by the anti-halation layer in conventional films, so its sort of like everything has a glowing white ora around it, especially the leaves. Kodak HIE film was notorious for having the best blooming results but unfortunately, Kodak discontinued this film about 5 years ago. Now there are three remaining brands that still sell B+W IR film: Ilford, Efke and Rollei. I hear the efke 820nm film is the closest to the Kodak HIE film but I have yet to test it. I wasn’t able to get my hands on the Efke, so the Ilford SFX200 film had to do but unfortunately is a tad lacking in the trademark blooming effect. sigh. Ah well, until next time.
ilford sfx200 IR film
tiffen R72 IR filter
Now that I have your attention…clever tag lines are not my forte and yes, believe it or not, it is a blatant ripoff of a really bad mob flick from decades past. More importantly, the name…Hell Gate bridge!? seriously!, perhaps one of the most badass names for a bridge ever. So if your wondering how it got its name, according to our good friends at wikipedia, it was a corruption of the Dutch term Hellegat, which could mean either “hell’s hole” or “bright gate/passage” The bridge spans across a narrow tidal strait of the famous East River and so legend has it that the strait was described in the journals of Dutch explorer Adriaen Block, who is the first European known to have navigated the strait, during his 1614 voyage aboard the Onrust.
The bridge itself at the time of its completion in 1916 was the world’s largest steel arch bridge only to be ousted 16 years later after the completion of its near identical twin, the Sydney Harbor Bridge. It was pretty much conceived as a way to link New York and the Pennsylvania Railroad with New England and the New Haven Railroad. And yes, for those that are not aware, this bridge served as the inspiration for J.J.C. Bradfield, chief engineer of the Sydney Harbor Bridge design.
Construction was overseen by Gustav Lindenthal, whose original design left a gap of 15 feet (4.6 m) between the steel arch and the masonry towers. Fearing that the public assumed that the towers were structurally integral to the bridge, Lindenthal added aesthetic girders between the upper chord of the arch and the towers (the straight vertical beams under the arch you see in the photo)to make the structure appear more robust. The original plans for the piers on the long approach ramps called for a steel lattice structure. The design was changed to smooth concrete to soothe concerns that asylum inmates on Wards and Randall’s islands would climb the piers to escape…awesome, and I’m sure that topic of discussion took up an entire meeting.
fuji provia 100f
~5 minute exposure
I’m up a tad earlier than usual today, clouds are gathering outside my living room window plotting something sinister, a rain storm perhaps?…reminds me of an even earlier morning rise I made last year during the summer down to Playa de Los Acquinos on the shores of Torrevieja, Spain to a quaint little boat house.
4×5 fuji provia 100f