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Book details
  • Genre:PHOTOGRAPHY
  • SubGenre:History
  • Language:English
  • Pages:202
  • Format:Paperback
  • Paperback ISBN:9780999795200

New York Shadow

Behind the Scenes

by Alan Pakaln View author's profile page

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Overview
New York Shadow: Behind The Scenes, is 8 series of photographs, totaling 173. Each chapter is a story about New York City, and of course, the experience of the person taking the pictures. I could be called "an accidental photographer" because I never thought about becoming a professional, though by the mountains of prints and boxes of negatives I have, I am a photographer. Sometimes we are also what we least expect. Today's New York City appears to me denser in terms of people and vehicles (bicycles included), and faster everywhere all the time. I wonder if the staff at Bellevue Hospital today would, or could, stand still long enough to be photographed. Would they appear to be at all relaxed as in these scenes? All photographs are presented full-frame, that is, without cropping, and without alterations other than brightness and contrast adjustments for printing: Coney Island, 1965; Night from a Car Window, 1965; The Feast of San Gennaro, Little Italy, 1971; Manhattan, Washington Heights, c. 1972; Bellevue Hospital, 1982; Times Square from a Bus, 2000; NYC Outtakes, 1970 - 2009; West Side, Lower Manhattan, 2018.
Description
By profession, I am a biomedical engineer with many years of experience overseeing the application of medical technology in New York City hospitals. By desire, I am a photographer with many more years experience than working in my profession. I am an amateur in the classic sense; I photograph what I care about. I was born in New York City (Doctor's Hospital, now a luxury condominium), and have lived and worked in and around NYC all my life. My education in photography began about age 17, and took place in a small darkroom, a closet under the stairs leading to the basement of the house I grew up in. Eventually, my darkroom had two enlargers, one for medium format, and I could produce both color and black-and-white images. Now, like most, I use a digital camera, scanner, and printer. Not better, just different. I've never been a high-tech enthusiast, although I have studied aspects of Weston's and Adams' zone system. My favorite cameras were the Nikkormat 35mm and the inexpensive, early point-and-shoot cameras, like a Brownie with 127 film. And now - simple, inexpensive, point-and-shoot cameras. Different technologies offer different ways of feeling about the process of photographing: SLR with film - careful, exacting; Brownie with film and viewfinder - playful; rear display digital point and shoot - casual, careless. New York Shadow: Behind The Scenes, is 8 series of photographs, totaling 173. Each chapter is a story about New York City, and of course, the experience of the person taking the pictures. I could be called "an accidental photographer" because I never thought about becoming a professional, though by the mountains of prints and boxes of negatives I have, I am a photographer. Sometimes we are also what we least expect.
About the author
By profession, I am a biomedical engineer with many years experience overseeing the application of medical technology in New York City hospitals. By amator (amateur), I am a photographer with many more years experience than my profession. I was born in New York City (Doctor's Hospital, now a luxury condominium), and have lived and worked in and around NYC all my life. My education in photography began about age 17, and took place in a small dark room, a closet under the stairs leading to the basement of the house I grew up in. I was self taught, and a proud amateur: I traded a commercially driven workday for the play and love of my own taking. That said, my darkroom had two enlargers, one for large format, and I could produce both color and black-and-white images. And now, I use a digital camera, scanner, and printer. At each successive residence, a photographic darkroom was built: under an elevated platform bed in lower Manhattan loft, a living room with blackened windows in a 5th-floor walk-up in Washington Heights, and in a spare bedroom of an apartment in Westchester County, NY. I've never been a high-tech enthusiast, but I studied aspects of Weston's and Adams' zone system. I also shot in medium format using a Mamiya, C330, 2 1/4. Still, my favorite cameras were the Nikkormat 35mm and the inexpensive, early point-and-shoot cameras, like a Brownie with 127 film.
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