Georgetown and its Tones of Home

GTII (1 of 1)GTIIII (1 of 1)Since our arrival in Seattle, we’ve found a number of neighborhoods we’ve grown quite fond of. Pioneer Square with it’s reminders of New York’s once edgy Lower East Side was our first love. While the International Center, Capitol Hill and pockets of Queen Anne have all spirited our first months here. That said, there has been somethng special about Georgetown that keeps us coming up with reasons to visit from one week to the next. Having moved to Columbia City just over a week ago has brought us even closer to the somewhat quiet pocket of Seattle that often reminds me of the out of the way area known as Red Hook Brooklyn back in New York. It wasn’t until my wife mentioned how much she loved the area and her desire oi buy there, that I realized just how similar the areas seemed.

For it was during what seemed like an endless search to buy a condo that fit our style and needs that we found an off the beaten path area in Brooklyn known as Red Hook. In just a few visits, it felt as if the area would become our desired location for us. The problem, however, was that after we attended to underwhelming open houses. We didn’t anything else appear on the market. Short story long, we gave up on the area and rarely ever returned afterward.

Fortunately, Georgetown has all the charm of the aforementioned East Coast destination with a closer proximity and easy accessibility to where we currently call home. Who knows if we’ll find a place in Georgetown or if we’ll even stay in Seattle permanently.  (With all the talk of what we miss back East. It’s hard to decide, yet.) Regardless, we’re having a great time getting to know the area.

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Exploring Edgewater

After an unexpected trip to Paramus we shot down to Edgewater to do a little grocery shopping at Whole Foods and Trader Joe’s. Being that each store sit a matter of feet from the Hudson River. I often take the opportunity to take a photo or two while my wife starts her three hour trip down the first aisle of either store. And while today’s trip through the veggie section of Trader Joe’s didn’t take quite as long as expected.     It gave me plenty of time to catch a few pictures of the wreckage that sits just off the short walking path on the Hudson.

While I had photographed The boat that lies to the south side of the two vessels. The one pictured sat closer. Allowing me to get more  detail. The second picture took a little searching to discover. While I’m not sure of it’s key function. I’d like to imagine it’s switches, levers and wiring control the destiny of every person, living space and business in the entire county. While I hadn’t been to the area in quite some time. I’m happy to have found some neat stuff to focus my lens on. It seems that every trip outside my door is an opportunity to discover something new.

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Exploring My New Surroundings

Since moving in to the new place less than two weeks ago.          I’ve made a point to take time out of each day to explore my immediate surroundings. When we originally learned about Canco ( I admit that I had some concerns.) Though our loft offers all the modern amenities, features and space a resident could offer.         I was somewhat concerned about it’s location and accessibility. Since those initial visits, I’ve quickly come to learn just how close we are to everything and anything while still maintaining somewhat of a remote and very private personality. Just steps away from Rt. 9, 7 and 139. Dey St. is just a short walk to Kennedy Blvd.,  the Journal Square PATH train (there’s actually a free shuttle bus you can pick up a block away that takes you right to our door step) and downtown shopping area. To finish, Canco is surrounded by some of the most unique and awe inspiring factories, warehouses and industrial beauty. Enough to keep me busy documenting my surroundings for years to come. I can only hope to find a healthy balance between my studio work and my urban landscapes. Learn, I will. Until the next time.

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Inside Neumann Leathers

As stated in my last post. I finally had the chance to wander the halls of Hoboken’s landmark building Neumann Leathers.             After hitting the drums for an hour or so I took a few minutes to explore the nooks and crannies of this character filled old factory. For as long as I can remember, I’ve always loved going to factories, junk yards and “Off Limits” areas to explore, investigate and take pictures. Sadly, most of these places have quickly disappeared. Ultimately being replaced by soulless high rises and retail franchises. Forv me personally, finding spots like these is like winning the lottery. Below are several of my favorite images from my exploration.

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Industrial

My passion for finding and photographing industrial articles is pretty insane. Many is the time I’ve gone to factories and industrial parks to find those pieces that peak my interest and curiosity. One of my dreams in life is to buy an industrial loft somewhere in Brooklyn. Not one of those completely converted ones they advertise with such glee. Something raw and bare that has character. A raw canvas craving for a creative and twisted makeover. A few years back I presented a portfolio entitled “Left Behind.” to  SOHO Photo Gallery. They fully understood the message I was trying to convey and granted me admission to the COOP. Since then I’ve worked hard to find  pieces to update and refresh that port. Often being chased out of construction sites, being questioned/detained by Police or both. But for me, the reward outweighs the hassle. I didn’t get into any such shenanigans capturing the ones below. But I enjoyed taking them just the same.

Finding Inspiration in Old Familiar Places.

Back in July I met up with the guys from !No Pasaran! to do an interview for my website. As I drove up to the series of buildings on Van Houten Ave. I got a serious case of De Ja Vu. Long before I moved to New Jersey in 2001 I spent a lot of time going to music venues and hanging out with friends here. Most of the time I really wasn’t paying much attention to exactly what town or what street I was on. For the most part  I was was just along for the ride. Since moving here I’ve had my share of “Wait, I know that place.” moments. Thus was the case with that day. During the nineties I had a lot of friends who played in local bands and rehearsed there. I always thought it would be a great place to take pictures and do photo shoots. So on a beautiful summer day I took my favorite test model and friend Audrey along with me and got it done. Since then I’ve returned twice and found different spots within the complex. It’s always a blast when you find a new spot to shoot. Especially when it turns out to be an old one.

I fought the law ….

I’ve been doing a lot of different work these days. Working to overcome my weaknesses while  improving my strengths. For some time now I’ve been in love with photographing work that I guess could be described asindustrial landscape. Bridges,trains,  factories, junk yards, power lines. You name it. Any time I’m driving home on the Turnpike or RT 1/9 I can’t help but want to pull over and admire the skylines stark beauty.  As of late I’ve been putting aside time to go off road and explore areas like Newark, Kearney and the outlying areas. Often time stopping to walk around and shoot pictures as the tractor trailers, semis and delivery trucks rumble past. I know there are a lot of people who would go out of their way to avoid this kind of thing. I know a lot of people might find it downright ugly. But for me there is something peaceful about it.

As I was headed into Newark this afternoon I took a wrong turn and got a little sidetracked. I passed through the Ironbound section of Newark and onto a series of bridges, power lines and factories. I found a nice secluded place to park, got my camera and started shooting. Within A few minutes two Police SUV’s pulled up. (Business as usual) I knew why they were there. I just wasn’t sure how they got there so fast. One of the risks of taking the kind of pictures I often take is these areas are often considered off limits to pedestrians. Especially pedestrians with cameras. Needless to say I’m used to having to explain myself. Though security guards are often quick on the draw or to pull out the knight stick. Police are usually a lot nicer and just question you and get your information. In the past I tended to be a prick when I got pulled over which in turn invited hostility and prolonged detention. These days I’m a lot more mature and understand that it’s just par for the course. I know they have a job to do and I know that there are crazies out there that might have some sick plan to blow up said bridge or factory. These officers were totally cool. I explained what I was doing and even gave them a business card along with my drivers license. I even told them I understood their concern and that I was living in New York City  during 9/11.After what seemed like a lengthy time he let me go on my way with a warning. Before I left I showed him the pictures I had taken which he seemed to like. I offered to erase the card but he said it was appreciated but not necessary. Not a terrible experience overall. Most of the time if you just act right and explain yourself people will be cool with you. I intend on taking more trips into the industrial areas to explore the opportunities and I am sure the law won’t be far behind.