Tuesday, April 7, 2009

F is for Flatiron

November 1989

Thanksgiving 1989, the second year I went to the parade, was overcast but not too cold. There was snow on the ground from a day or two before, making the streets and sidewalks dark and slick. I was shooting the balloons from Herald Square that year; I was using two cameras-one with color film, and one with black and white. Since I was able to look up Broadway, from behind all the television trucks, I could see the line-up long before they got near 34th street, where they'd emerge from the shadows of the midtown canyon and turn right towards Seventh Avenue and their eventual deflation. I wanted to shoot them just before the turn.

There were only a couple of balloons that year I was interested in, and they were spaced almost a half an hour apart, so I spent a bit of time wandering the mostly deserted blocks below Herald Square. It was nice having so much of Manhattan to myself, so I came all the way down here to 23rd street and worked my way through most of a roll on each camera.

This is probably my favorite of all my images of the Flatiron Building. It's got a timeless feel to it, and if the cab weren't there it would be difficult to place the decade.

1 comment:

Sherry said...

There's a fairly well-known photo (probably in Gaslight New York) of the Flatiron from that same angle with a buggy passing and evidence of the cut-and-cover operation to run the IRT down Broadway from about 90 years ago.

Looks like nothing has changed.

(Could be from Under the Sidewalks of New York---since that was a subway book.)