Wednesday, October 8, 2014

NYC Reflections

Editor's note: The second-year Lambton College Digital Photography students are on a five-day work study visit to New York City.  Follow our daily blog about the adventure.  Each day two students will share their thoughts on the experience.  Please join us as we experience New York City.

NYC a Reflection  -By Nathena Lightheart

An abstract of a few elements taken off the side of the 
walkway leading up onto the Brooklyn Bridge, Manhattan side, 
Manhattan, Oct 4 2014. Nathena Lightheart / Lambton College.   
For those of you who have been following the blog you know that we (some more reluctantly than others) had to say goodbye to the Big Apple today. Goodbye to the excitement and infinite abundance of opportunities and energy and hello to some much-needed sleep.  So while I rested in the airport and throughout the flight home as I was dumping memory cards and uploading hundreds of pictures, I began reflecting back on the week. It’s hard to believe that our NYC journey has already come and gone. It feels very surreal to me—a blur even, where all the days blend into one and it feels as if we had only just arrived when really it was now time to go. 

Five days ago, we were headed to the airport, running on little more than a few hours sleep lots of coffee and a year’s worth of anticipation. A bundle of nerves, we boarded the small plane from Detroit, headed for the trip of a life time. As we descended into the Newark airport, we grabbed our first glimpse of the New York skyline, which would soon become our playground and home away from home.  Pumped and all freshly hit with the realization that “holy crap this is real,” we grabbed our bags and hit the pavement. NYC is very much a dive-in-headfirst ordeal: it is MASSIVE and virtually everything moves fast, so with only five days to cover as much ground as possible you just go!  

Alawode Oluwasegun lines up a shot 
in NYC's underground Metro system,

Oct 2, 2014 Manhattan, New York. 
Nathena Lightheart / Blog Lambton College
With passes to purchase, trains and subway systems to learn, places to be, itineraries to follow, projects to think about, culture to absorb and of course things to see, we were all comparable to deer caught in headlights.  As photographers, we were like kids in a candy store stopping every six steps to photograph someone or something. Caught up in all the hustle and bustle of the city, we began very much like your typical tourist and probably stuck out like a sore thumb; however, after the first day or so, we all began to find a groove, the city’s groove. In embracing the chaos, the fast pace became our friend and the constant go, go, go was second nature, though I think our feet would strongly disagree. NYC is like a giant beehive in continuous motion: it is like a living breathing organism buzzing with its rich and brilliantly varied landscapes, buildings and landmarks. There is so much to observe. Then you toss in its eclectic and downright wildly eccentric people and you’ve got the recipe for a photographer’s playground.

A Graffiti tribute to the Famous post war photo, Sailor kissing 
girl in the in the middle Time Square following Japans surrender. 
Photo was taken from NYC's High-liner Oct 2, 2014 Manhattan, 
New York. Nathena Lightheart / Lambton College
As photographers, it is in our nature to always be watching people and observing the world around us. NYC was the perfect place to do just that, and once the initial awe factor had passed that is just what I did. There were actually points amidst the constant rush of our commutes and buildings seemingly spinning above my head where something would catch my eye and I would stop or double back to take a better look and for little more than a moment time would almost still. It was in these types of moments that I got my favorite shots from our trip. Since getting home and somewhere between airport shuttles, baggage claims, border crossing, homecomings, unpacking, and eventually sleep (fingers crossed), I have had a little more time to reflect. As I am still very much in disbelief that the trip has actually come and gone, I have decided to use my blog day to pay homage to the moments that slowed the NYC experience down for me: the moments that let me see how truly stunning and spectacular New York can really be. I have chosen to share photos from an alternate perspective than that of the pictures posted day to day of all the main attractions visited during our time in NYC. Cheers to the city that never sleeps, from a group of students who plan to do nothing but for at least a week ;) 

Reflection    -By Christina Duizer

As I await my flight home from Newark, New Jersey, I feel my pace begin to slow, my tired mind and body starting to relax, and reflection of the past five days is fast upon me.

A unique perspective of an interesting architectural detail
outside of St. Thomas Church near the Museum of
Modern Art (MOMA). October 3, 2014
(Christina Duizer, Lambton Digital Photography)
I begin to think about how I will recount my first trip to NYC to my friends and family.  What is the best way to describe it?

Maybe simply put, NYC is so much more than a city. It is a “must do”, “keep up”, “hold on”, “eyes wide open” kind of experience.

And to a photographer, that sounds just about right!

With its culture, architecture, food, people, landmarks, galleries, and so much more, there was endless subject matter just waiting to be experienced and captured.
The “moments” are endless.

And although the city can be a bit relentless at times, it is an amazing force to reckon with, and as I recount my days in that vast city, I am confident to say that I stood strong.

A long park bench sits empty on a beautiful day in Central Park. 
October 6, 2014.  (Christina Duizer, Lambton Digital Photography)
Strength that comes from being a part of an amazing group (that was led by our seasoned and trusty tour guides, Richard and Dave). With our combined energy, passion, creativity, and (sometimes stubborn) determination for the best shot, we entered the city each day ready for the quest.

I’m thankful to the quest for pushing my photography skills to the limit, introducing me to one of the greatest cities in the world, and creating lasting memories with my Lambton family. 

I hope someday soon I will get to battle NYC again, as I am pretty sure she has a lot more fight in her…but I’m not worried, so do I!  

Until we meet again NYC….

Christina Duizer heads the pack for a trip inland. Broad Street, Newark, New Jersey, Oct 2, 2014.

 Nathena Lightheart / Lambton College
Friendly dog patiently waits for his owner in the middle of a high traffic area downtown Manhattan, 
New York, Oct 3, 2014.  Nathena Lightheart / Lambton College
Woman unknown pauses to reflect upon the last image taken of the twin towers by 
city cam the morning of the 9/11 attacks.Ground Zero 9/11 Memorial Manhattan, 
New York, Oct 4, 2014. Nathena Lightheart / Lambton Colleg
The prayer room inside the intricately crafted Trinity Church, Manhattan, New York, Oct 4 2014.

Nathena Lightheart / Lambton College
Alawode Oluwasegun poses for a shot while testing his Nikon's night settings, across the street from 
World Trade Centres PATH stationManhattan, New York, Oct 3, 2014. 
Nathena Lightheart / Lambton College
A view of the beautifully crafted ceiling inside the National Museum of the 
American Indian Gallery building. Manhattan, New York,

Oct 4, 2014. Nathena Lightheart / Lambton College
Off to the right Lorraine Kraayenbrink takes a glance at her phone, while the twinkling lights paint a 
beautiful scene along the edge of Bridge park, New York, Oct 4 2014. 
Nathena Lightheart /  Lambton College

One of the many entrances to the NYC Subway system- Our trusty mode of transportation that maneuvered us through the city . October 6, 2014 (Christina Duizer, Lambton Digital Photography)
A statue is hidden behind beautiful wrought iron bars in St. Patricks Cathedral in Lower Manhattan. October 3, 2014. (Christina Duizer, Lambton Digital Photography)

Suspended necklaces for sale at a street market near St. Paul’s Cathedral. October 4, 2014 (Christina Duizer, Lambton Digital Photography)

Before visiting the Morrison Hotel Gallery in SoHo, a stop for coffee (and amazing macaroons!) provides a unique photo of coffee discs displayed on the wall. October 5, 2014 (Christina Duizer, Lambton Digital Photography)

A beautiful building and moon illumination is captured on our walk back to the subway from Times Square. October 5, 2014 (Christina Duizer, Lambton Digital Photography)

A NYC fire truck races by in Times Square as Spiderman takes a much needed break. October 5, 2014 (Christina Duizer, Lambton Digital Photography)

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