Wires on the Brooklyn Bridge
It was a cold October night and a friend of mine and I drove down to the City after finishing work.
I was still relatively new to New York, having moved here a few months back for a job. I was still in awe of this monumental city, I had been told about it all before, seen it in movies, seen photos of it all my life, but seeing it for myself was totally different.
My friend Zac, and I were exhausted from a 12 hour day of work.
Yet as we stepped onto the Brooklyn Bridge we were completely refreshed by the view from this majestic landmark, and in part from the chilling wind! The Bridge had been built about 150 years ago yet it still looked modern and cutting edge.
It was built before the mainstream use of electricity, before modern technology and computers, yet was still perfect in every way.
I walked the entire length of it from downtown Manhattan to Brooklyn. It wasn't until I was halfway back across it that I even took my camera out. I knew I had to get a special shot, one that had never been seen before. My friend beside me meanwhile was snapping away with his camera, appearing to indiscriminately fire off hundreds of shots of the bridge.
I prefer a more contemplative approach. I observed for a long time. I really soaked in my surroundings. I truly embraced the surreal environment I standing in. I got to the end of the bridge on the Brooklyn side and started walking back again. I was just beyond halfway back across the bridge approaching Manhattan, when I turned around and looked up. I saw the massive tower looming over me, with my favorite flag just atop it, and I knew instantly that this was the moment I came for. I experimented with many different angles and camera positions, but quickly found my favorite position was with the lens a few inches off the ground. I got down on the ground, lay on my stomach and positioned my tripod as low as it could possibly go. The tripod was needed, as the light was so dim that night that I needed to stabilize the camera and take a long-exposure.
(An “exposure” is another name for a photograph, a “long” exposure is where instead of capturing a scene instantaneously, with the shutter open for say a 1/100th of a second like you would with a normal photograph, you steady the camera on a stable surface or on a tripod, and you keep the shutter open for 5,10, 30 seconds or even longer. This lets a lot more light in, and allows you to get a sharp image in the dark where you wouldn't otherwise be able to.)
Ultimately my tripod wouldn't let my camera go as low as I wanted it to, so I had to improvise and steady my camera on a piece of clothing.
All I was wearing was a thin wool sweater, the only substantial garment protecting me from the piercing cold, damp wind on this high, unsheltered bridge. But I had come too far to miss this opportunity. I took my sweater off and lay it down in front of me.
I steadied the camera and positioned it just the right way, to get the powerful image I wanted. I got ready to start my first long exposure when suddenly the bridge started shaking. I looked behind me and saw a man on a bicycle riding towards me.
The small movement of the bike on this 277ft suspension bridge felt like a Californian earthquake!
He eventually passed and I lined up my shot again. But then the same thing happened. Another 2 bikes rode past me. Even someone walking lightly past me was shaking the ground so much I'd get a blurry image if I tried a long exposure.
I realized people had been riding or walking past me for the last hour and a half but I was so absorbed by my surroundings I hadn't noticed just how many people were passing by and into my shot every minute!
In New York City things are bustling even at 1 am on a tuesday night. And each passer-by would have to travel beyond me by about 100 ft or so before I was good to go again. But the challenge was that by this time, someone else was usually on their way towards me! This was compounded by the fact that after doing several light-readings, I realized I had to get an exposure of about 25 seconds. All of the sudden I felt like I was on set on a hollywood movie, everything had to be just right in order to get this precious shot.
I spent about an hour on my stomach, gently tweaking minor settings here and there to get everything exactly as I wanted. But mostly, it was a waiting game- there had to be no one traveling across the bridge for the 25 second “take”, the American flag that stood proudly atop the arch had to be blowing in the wind during this whole time (not just limply hanging there) and I was determined to sit there until I got what I wanted.
And I did. When the shutter finally snapped closed on that last exposure, I knew I had gotten it. I didn't even bother to check the screen to verify. I was one with the environment, and it had delivered to me precisely what I had asked for. By this time it was past 2 am, I was dressed in a thin cotton T-shirt (haven taken my sweater off to assist the shot) frozen to the core, but having just photographed one of the most famous landmarks on Earth.
And I had gotten my shot. Nothing else mattered.
Production and Shipping Time:
Glossy Photo Paper: 5 days for printing, 5 days for shipping.
Ready-to-Hang Canvas: 5 days for printing, 5 days for shipping.
There are 5 ways to print these images.
1) Premium Glossy Photo Paper are high quality, professional paper-prints.
Sharp, Vivid and rich Color sets this apart from a casual photo print.
You'll feel like you're there.
Premium Glossy Photo Paper will last a long time.
This option is available in 8x10 inches, 11x14 inches or 16x20 inches.
They are designed to be placed in a glass frame, which can be purchased separately (starting at a few dollars at your local Target or online).
2) Ready to Hang Canvas are ready to hang right out of the box with zero assembly required. Ultimate convenience.
Gorgeous finished look. It comes out of the shipping box finished and ready to hang with a simple nail in the wall.
Canvas Prints are a well-known, high-end way of displaying photographs.
1.5 inch thick wooden stretcher-bars that give it shape, in the same way an oil painting is traditionally assembled. There are no staples or ugly lines visible on the sides (very important).
Estimated delivery time for printing, assembling, packing and shipping is around 10 days.
3) Ready to Hang Canvas (split into 3 panels)
This is for larger pieces, and the photograph is split into 3 even panels, 3 separate canvas panels which put together make a single large image.
This gives a modern look, and allows spectacularly large sizes on your wall!
4) Aluminum Metal Prints
Create elegant wall decor that shines with high-end, exclusive and unique aluminum metal prints.
Create a polished addition to any home or office. 3/64" thick aluminum panel. Features a glossy coating and rounded edges.
UV resistant ink prevents fading. All metal sizes are ready to hang on your wall, right out of the box.
5) Acrylic Prints
Create eye-catching home decor with modern acrylic prints. Light refracts through the museum-quality acrylic bringing vibrancy and depth to your photos. The .22" thick clear acrylic produces superb image quality from edge to edge and absolutely stunning, brilliant color!
UV resistant ink prevents fading. All metal sizes are ready to hang on your wall, right out of the box