Category Archives: new york

Art Reproduction photographer Western Mass

Art Reproduction Photographer Western Mass

 

 

You may know me as a photographer of families and professionals and actors and couples getting married, but there’s a lot of things I do that you don’t know about. I do a lot of pictures of art. Reproduction of well-known art for a big art foundation. I go to warehouses, galleries, auction houses, museums, and private homes to take photos. It may seem quite boring, taking pictures of art, but it presents a technical challenge, and it allows me to get up close and personal with some of the best art of the last century. Most recently, I photographed Andy Warhol pieces for a catalog for a show called Andy Warhol: Works from the Hall Collection. It was from last year in Oxford UK. Here’s a review of the show. Nearly all of the images in this art catalog from the show are by me. It’s a lovely catalog that’s displayed proudly in my kitchen of all places.

Baby Christening

Baby Christening, Long Island, NY.

My event work isn’t always weddings. A few weeks ago, I was photographing the Christening of a little boy names Konstantinos. This took place at the beautiful St. Paraskevi Greek Orthodox Church in Greenlawn, NY. The reception was at the Larkfield Manor in East Northport, NY.

The most beautiful thing about events like these are the strong ties to tradition, the connection to family, and the positive feelings throughout the day and night. Happy vibes, happy family, happy friends. Konstantinos was showered with love and welcomed into Christian life by his Godmother, Victoria. Everyone felt the special celebration.

I work hard, and my job is not leisure, but it is attached to our essential human emotions. This makes it mean so much to me.

Central Park Shakespeare Garden wedding

Central Park Shakespeare Garden wedding

Mr. Shakes would have been proud. Every time I photograph a wedding in Central Park, NYC, and I do this often, I am in awe of the beauty and magic of the places. This was a wedding from a while back, that I haven’t gotten around to blogging about. Why? Because the father of the bride is a photographer, and I gave him the RAW files. So editing wasn’t first on my list. But I did, and there are a few observations that make this wedding special. Seriously special.

The first thing is that they were an excessively kind and nice group of people. Now, all my brides and grooms are nice, but few insist, after my job is over, that I come to the Plaza Hotel Palm Court for cocktails, and insist that I join them for dinner at Tavern on the Green. This wasn’t a large group, and they wouldn’t have it any other way. I had to be there. Kindness. Thank you!

First, the fairy tale beauty of Central Park (and before that the Roosevelt Hotel):

Here are pictures of the couple in front of the Plaza, facing 5th Avenue:

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Some quirky things…. I always take pictures in elevators….

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Father of the bride writing me a check on the bride’s back:

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Peter Boruchowitz,

Wedding officiant, and his lovely smile:

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Not to be ignored, this group did something amazing. They stopped in the crosstown tunnel in Central Park to get out of the car and go up the stairs to their wedding. Now, I am a local, and I wouldn’t have dreamed of stopping a car on the busy street. But they did, and it worked out just fine. I discovered something that I have never noticed in all the years in NYC: the stone staircase. I have always marveled at the tunnel, but never knew about the staircase:

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Another thing that I love from this wedding is the pictures from and involving the car. It’s a special time, and many photographers forget about it:

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Columbus Circle:

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Central Park Wedding Shakespeare Garden

Central Park Wedding, Shakespeare Garden, New York. I photographed a wedding of a couple from New Orleans. They had a small gathering in the Shakespeare Garden in Central Park. I was nervous, because the father of the bride, Oscar Rajo, is an accomplished wedding photographer, and I agreed to hand over my RAW files (my diary). After the ceremony they all went to the Plaza (Palm Court) for a cocktail. I had to sit with them because there was no other place to sit while I transferred the files to a hard drive. They insisted on getting me a drink. They rushed out because they were late, and I was still working. I told them I’d meet them at dinner to get the files to them. I rushed to Tavern on the Green and handed over the files. The whole family insisted I stay for dinner. “We’re from New Orleans, you stay with us,” the groom said. I held my breath for a few days hoping he wouldn’t hate his pictures. Then I got the following email. “Hello Elizabeth, just want to thank you for taking part in Lindsey’s big day. We went thru the images today. You do absolutely wonderful work. We’re looking at the raw files and I’m looking forward to processing the set. You captured some really wonderful / magical moments. I can learn from you. Thank you for working with me and handing over the raw files. I hope you enjoyed yourself. We certainly enjoyed having you with us. I will send the processed images in a week or two. I tried my best to be a good assistant to you. Get on Facebook and show off your work. THANK YOU, THANK YOU!!”

In honor of the wonderful experience, I decided to collaborate with the father of the groom and post his favorite pictures, edited by him.

Fashion Photo Shoot, NJ

This Sandy Hook NJ visit in October 2008 was more of a fashion photo shoot, headshot,

portrait than a surreal artistic magical mystery experience. See the photos from that gorgeous day here. I actually recruited a male model from Q modeling agency to help tell the story. Hala owned Hala Vintage, a lovely store in Jersey City, and I believe an online store for all things beautiful and vintage. I walked into her store and showed her the pictures from the previous photo shoot and asked if she’d be interested in using some of her clothes. Until I showed her the photos, she was ho-hum about it. After I showed her the pictures, she told me that she liked to style fashion shoots. I worked with her on this photo shoot with Danielle Zaragoza from Q. Wonderful day.

Then I asked if she’d be interested in being a stylist and a model. She got her hair and make up team over to Sandy Hook NJ and we had a great day into evening. The clothes were very Gatsby. I usually don’t have a pre-conceived story board. I let it unfold as I perceive the subjects in the environment.
It became the story of romantic lovers in a fairy tale relationship that turned disfunctional, and ended up in a zombie-esque wedding on the beach at night.
I used my regular Hasselblad and burned through an obscene amount of film. I also used my superwide camera.
An amazing camera that few people use anymore, due to its price and niche wide angle style. One camera and one lens. Over 5,000 dollars.
Bruce Rosenblum miraculously appeared on the set, to offer his help with lightning. He held my reflector, and painted in light as the sun disappeared. Thanks, Bruce!

tennis photography

tennis_sm-0273Tennis Photography, NYC, John Jay Park, early morning.

A photographer loves to be behind the lens, but hates getting his/her picture taken, right? Wrong. Sometimes I get an idea for a staged shoot, and I want to be the subject. This was the case. I had the idea of a yin/yang juxtaposition, based on who I am. I dressed in black, wore dramatic make-up and played tennis in a chain-link fence cage. The editing was cold and high contrast (it actually just imported like that for some reason and I left it.) . Tennis photography, (if you click on the link, ignore those commercially looking pictures and see the players in action) or sports photography, offers the possibility of amazing dynamic shots of humans in human activity. Active and powerful.

When I was little growing up in Lafayette Park Detroit, I used to hit the tennis ball against the wall at a bar called Lafayette-Orleans. It had an iron balcony and the tennis balls got stuck up there. But it was where I developed a love for tennis. Both of my parents worked nearby — my dad at a grocery store and my mom at her cheesecake business — so I was able to amuse myself while at the same time stay close to them. After playing tennis, I would go to Zuchin’s, a deli, where my parents kept a running tab for me. I just googled Lafayette-Orleans and Zuchins’s, only to find nothing. Strange how places so important in childhood are nowhere on the internet. Anyway, I stray.

Back to the tennis photography session… tennis is such a big part of me beginning at childhood, that I felt it a good idea to go back to an urban environment and document it as an important portrait of me. I actually used to go to that caged area when the handball players weren’t there, to hit the tennis ball against the wall. For this shoot we went to John Jay Park — just steps from my apartment. So this session is not too far off from reality. Tennis is an activity where I feel strong, empowered and active. I think the photos reflect this. It’s important for portraits to reveal a truth about the person, instead of trying to get them to look generic and simply like a picture in a magazine. Yawn.

I have so many of them, thanks to my star team member photographer Adam. These pictures were taken with a Nikon F2 with 35mm film! Yes Film! The complete yin yang photo session never happened. I wanted to frolic in Central Park in a white dress. I guess it never happened because I have enough photos of that side of me. As in, most.

What’s your tennis photography? What is your yin/yang? What do you find when you look into your personal archives in your mind? What places and activities are important to who you are today?

Tennis shoes, are basketball shoes: Converse All Stars

The outfit, is not a tennis outfit: Betsy Johnson.

 

 

 

Lucky Star bus replaces Fung Wah

I took the Lucky Star bus for the first time last summer, and after waiting an hour and a half for a replacement bus because the first one didn’t pass inspections, it was a marvelous ride. It got me to Boston from New York in great time. Ah the Chinatown buses always hold such adventures.

For those of you who remember, and for those who wish to forget the Fung Wah bus, I am posting an old picture of it. I know it’s old news, but it was news to me when I looked for the Fung Wah, this summer, only to find the Lucky Star. Fung Wah went out of business in February 2014, because their buses were foo-foo, among other things.

Fung Wah was one of the first Chinatown bus services out of New York City. It served the Boston to New York to Boston community, primarily. The tickets were always rock bottom prices. Compared to other companies, this one was no frills. And frankly, that’s what I loved about it. When you got on, the driver barely spoke, not because he barely spoke English, but because there was nothing to say. Unlike the Peter Pan, or Greyhound, the driver of the Fung Wah found it superfluous to go on missives of stating the obvious: the virtues of leaving trash in bags; urinating in, not outside of the toilet; speaking quietly when talking on phones; and keeping headphone music on low. Most importantly, the Fung Wah driver avoided speculating about traffic and arrival times. We’ll get there when we get there. Obviously. This is the Northeast corridor, between two huge metropolises. Anything goes, traffic-wise.  Yes, they’d gotten themselves into trouble for speeding and other things. I just looked the company up on Wikipedia, and just learned, fittingly, that Fung Wah means “Magnificent Wind.” With that name, of course they had to fly like the wind.

The only thing that the bus driver ever said, in my memory of traveling on the Fung Wah bus, was, “Ten minutes.” The time you had in Connecticut, to have a cigarette (not me), go to the bathroom, (one not on the bus, but not necessarily better) or pick up some greasy food at a given fast food restaurant that was lucky enough to be the stop of choice.  The bus was so cheap and convenient, I turned a blind eye to any headlines about bus safety issues, violations or the like.

This is one of my favorite pictures. I managed to capture the iconic Lucky Star bus zooming across the Manhattan Bridge. I was in Brooklyn, at the ClockTower Building, with a 200mm lens. The subway cars were pictured below it. If my calculations are correct, this one was getting some magnificent headwind toward Boston.

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