- Edward Durrell Stone residence
The first shots of the trip, only an hour before darkness fell
and the short foray to the Upper East Side had to be cut short.
Backlighting makes the shot rather unsuccesful, especially at
- Asia House
One of those with trees in front... The lack of space forced to
tilting the camera upwards and the top is lost, mixed with
the pale sky.
- Hotel Pierre
An impulse shot taken from a Madison street corner -- luckily there
was a corner plaza to allow the view. Even the underexposure works
pretty well, "framing" the well-lit main subject.
- Lever House 1
(one) A late evening shot of the building then under renovation, with
the Park Avenue Plaza on the left.
(two) From the Seagram plaza, next to the south-side pool.
- Union Carbide Building 1
(one) A dramatic night shot with the building illuminated from
(two) Another night shot, this time from the 48th Street "plaza"
of the Bankers Trust. The elevator core of the building glows within
the glass cage. These were the only night shots, taken after a
27-hour trip to NYC... Sleep, anyone? Nah...
- 1, 3 and 5 Times Square
A morning shot when the crossroads was still quiet and one
could work rather unhindered. One of shots taken with future
site entry additions in mind.
- 5 Times Square
A move down 42nd Street provided a vastly better view of the
- Bush Tower
A blue-tinted early-morning shot from the east, featuring the
- 3 Times Square
It's getting lighter, which reflects on the curving facade of the
building. The Times Square Tower is still a dig in the ground.
(And exactly two months from the date of this photo the S.E.C.
begins investigating the tower's main tenant (not-)to-be Arthur
Andersen Consulting -- and three days before the photo Kenny Lay
had told that Enron's accounting practices are "legal and totally
appropriate" and its stock is "an incredible bargain"...)
- 1411 Broadway
A strongly vertical, yet somewhat underexposed, shot.
- 1407 Broadway
A dull early morning shot. The flag in the picture dictated the
location of the camera, thus precluding the inclusion of more of
- Philip Morris Inc. Building
The first of the legendary "a**hole series". A reshoot of a 1997
shot, rather nice and crisp, despite slight underexposure. For the
photographer, the main remembrance, however, came from the totally
jerkish way a young overzealous cop piled on me after I'd taken the
shot, accusing me of taking a pic of the viaduct for terrorists(!)
and wanting to see the ID and all the works that go with the drill.
But even better was to follow two hours later, not very far...
- Socony-Mobil Building
A curiously exposed shot, with the sky and top leading to a blackened
lower facade, although the facade treatment is pretty well accentuated
against the darkened walls.
- Chanin Building 1
(one) Bordered by the shiny mass of the Socony, a nicely exposed
(two) Rather steep 42nd St. and the Chanin base with its wealth of
- Daily News Building
A shot from the plaza in front of the Ford Foundation. It should come
as no surprise that a guard, female this time, came to prohibit
- United Nations Secretariat
A shot similar to the NY Palace, a
symmetrical "full-frontal". Taken from across the First Ave., there
was a wooden barrier (like the one at the bottom of the pic) on the
Shcharansky Steps side of the sidewalk, and I had to first lug the
tripod over it and go after. After that, it took surprisingly long
to find a perfect position for the camera and several shots, yet the
shot is still a bit tilted. The cropping of the image to web size,
moreover, disintegrates the heavily detailed facade, although the
exposure is pretty good, for
once. The shooting was, again, a rather nervous job, partly as I was
certain that my lengthy fumbling just across the UN would raise the
suspicions of the guard in the booth just across the street, partly
because the whole time I thought of being in a potential kill-zone
should an airliner come crashing through the building in 9/11 fashion.
Unrational thinking, but that raced through my mind constantly --
as I walked down First Ave. to 42nd, even the sound of a low-flying
airliner made me take a nervous glance to the direction of the sound.
It didn't indeed take long to create post-9/11 NYer uneasiness...
- Dag Hammarskjold Library
A shot from the First Ave. sidewalk. A low-rise version of the
Secretariat Bldg. with its glass walls and marble-clad ends.
- U.N. Plaza/Park Hyatt
A reshoot from the Tudor City 42nd St. steps. The jagged, glass-clad
forms rise above the tree-line.
- Chrysler Building
A satiny shot of the top from Third Ave, with the top of the Kent
Building merging with the Chrysler.
- Wang Building
A very difficult target to bag properly and to find good sightlines.
A shot along Third Avenue.
- MetLife Building
A reshoot of a kind, combining the granite base and the concrete
tower of the building, from the same tripod location whence the
245 was next taken. If I'd craned the camera down to the street
level, you'd see the two cops standing at the corner, under the
viaduct, before they crossed the street after I'd shot the 245
Park and got off (maybe literally ;^))
with the most unbelievable
cr@p one can expect to hear, 9/11 or no 9/11. That must have
indeed been the low point of the many
encounters with the "enforcers" (lawful or otherwise) on the three
NYC trips (perhaps discounting Newark arrival and the retardo who
almost finished me off 101 West End, both in 2000),
but I guess that it was exactly the objective of that poor,
uncivilized creature, to take out his petty prejudices and let off
steam. The only reason I didn't take his badge number was the fact
that he very clearly meant "business" and I didn't want to risk an
arrest by an unstable cop with potential Schwartz/Volpe tendencies
-- back in Finland I would have indeed stood up to any rights that
even a cop might distantly recognize, but being alone abroad
in a country that had taken a shortcut to a semi-police state state
I decided to be very, very wary and simply answer their (or his)
intrusive questions. A f-ing disgrace and, in all, a nice
arrival introduction to post-9/11 NYC... (Strangely enough, it hardly
occurred to these policemen that had I been working for some
"Islamist" w-kers, I hardly would have drawn attention to myself by
wielding a tripod as I could have taken good enough pictures for
targeting purposes with a handheld, "touristy" camera, without drawing
unwanted attention to myself. Go figure.)
The shot was, however,
rather nice and even the underexposure at the bottom is rather
- 245 Park Avenue
A nice view (and one of the few possible ones) of the building
through the stairway from 45th St. to the Park Avenue Atrium.
- Union Carbide Building 1
(one) With a base sheathed in unpenetrable darkness, the building
rises with vertical accentuation. I like the composition and the
solid wall sheathing vs. reflecting glass of the framing buildings.
(two) The "West Wing". The shiny aluminium mullion ribs and the black
and red of the spandrels contrast on the lower floors.
- Westvaco Building
In the dark canyons. Reflecting the skies and surroundings, the
building's glass facade has the mullions jagged as a result of
the cropping of image.
- Chemical Bank Building
One of my faves, a stark, contrasty collection of reflecting
surfaces, facade divisions and construction structures.
- Waldorf Astoria Hotel 1
(one) A reshoot with the main entrance.
(two) The massiveness of the Waldorf between the Modernist
- General Electric Tower 1
(one) A reshoot of a 1997 disaster.
(two) A more dramatic approach; darkish, mostly due to the danger
of the top washing out. Note the elaborate spandrels.
- Seagram Building 1
(one) The Park Ave. side, shot from the edge of the sidewalk,
with a large pool of water on the street directly in front of the
tripod, reflecting the nearby buildings and the sky. An eerie,
(two) The less-photogrphed rear of the building, showing the less
iconic and cluttered rear portion of the plot.
- First National City Bank
A nice, almost silvery quality of the glass walls reflecting the
typically colourless, cloudy skies prevalent on the trip, as well
as the neighbouring buildings.
- Park Avenue Plaza
A daytime shot with the upper portion sunlit and thus well-rendered
- 599 Lexington Avenue
A rather difficult target to shoot and expose. The 345 Park facade
on the left gives interesting colour and borders the building with
its Brutalist concrete form.
- Citicorp/group Center 1
A very difficult building to bag from the street.
(one) A shot of the base.
(two) The (almost) whole of the building from 53rd. Underexposure.
(three) An almost absurdly underexposed shot, yet it works -- just.
An impulse shot from a distance.
- 860-870 U.N. Plaza
A more stark rendition of the building than the sunny-sky
2000 shot. Modernist sobriety.
- Beekman Tower
A rather nice shot with good colour rendition and detail. Shot from
the curious "lip" of sidewalk that required walking for some
distance around the sidewalk railing. Curious was also the fact that
I got to finish shooting from my location without any hindrance...
- Trump World Tower
An upward-angled view along 48th St. Pretty satisfied with the
composition and the adjacent shafts of the 100 U.N. and the Trump,
but the exposure was again a bit on the dull side.
- 100 U.N. Plaza
A spontaneous shot while walking uptown. One of my faves with
different types of building crowding the 100 U.N., yet leaving
- Marriott East Side Hotel
Yet another reshoot.
- IBM Building
Yep, a reshoot (why reinvent the wheel). A bit somber in the cloudy
exposure but crisp in detail.
- Fuller Building
A somber and overpowering shot with dark clouds, but nevertheless
burdened with a reddish tint and slight underexposure... The
tangle of setbacks in the lower right is, nevertheless, rather nice.
- Ritz Hotel
A nice shot from street corner, albeit darkish, despite the
Four Seasons in the background being almost washed out.
- Alexander Hirsch residence
One of the definite predetermined "targets" of the trip, an
uncompromising Modernist masterpiece, a compositional study
with a refined version of the pitch black
1 Liberty Plaza steel facade.
An unknown gem lost in the "side" streets. Unfortunately, the
building eluded good photographic rendering despite my
continuous attempts at it with strange hues and improper
metering and focusing -- I think I shot the five shots also
handheld for the fear of appearing too "intrusive" in front of
a private residence... The two people on the left edge give
nice scale to the photo, as well as a sense of "refinement"
with their attire.
- Metropolitan Tower
A shot marred by some badly-positioned flagpoles and a flag --
unfortunately, there was no other place to shoot from.
- Carnegie Hall Tower
Another one saved by the appearance of the sun that brings out
the earthy tones of brickwork. Shot from behind
some streetwalk-side barriers.
- 1166 Sixth Avenue
A rather nice effect of contrast between the differently lighted
facades and the reflection of the Americas Tower.
- Americas Tower
An early morning shot along 45th St., another one to be added
(a lot) later to the 'scraper entries on the site.
- Interchem Building
Avenue of the Internationals -- at last a proper shot of the Interchem,
albeit dark in the cloudy early morning.
- Condé Nast Building
The Bush, 4 TSQ and the location of the future 1 Bryant Pk. in an
early morning shot with the Maidman building totally black, yet the
4 TSQ glass facade partly washing out. The exposure latitude of
- American Standard Building 1
(one) First of the AmStand shots, not a long after a rain shower,
as can be seen on the pavement.
(two) And the second. The black brick facing of the building, hum,
blackened out due to the underexposure, with the street-level wing
unfortunately left disastrously dark. The location of the shot was
dictated by the inclusion of the Empire State in the photo. As I was
taking the shots, a policeman came to my tripod-mounted camera and
gave me five minutes to finish shooting, all in a well-mannered way.
This time I was glad to oblige. It's all in the delivery, after
- N.Y. Telephone (Verizon) Building
A vastly superior reshoot from the park, with all the facade details
- McGraw-Hill Building I
A morning shot on another dull day, with the colours of the facade
largely washed out.
- Columbus Centre (
Time Warner Center)
The early stages of the complex's construction, 16 months after the
Coliseum was being dismantled on the plot.
Right after this shot meeting another Customer Care Specialist, a.k.a.
Deli Owner in a nearby deli... Almost made me want to go "Falling
Down" on the premises...
- Trump International Hotel & Tower
Another reshoot and another underexposure, but this time the red hue
of an underexposed shot worked to an advantage in the gold-toned piers
of the building.
- Century Apartments
Nice, earthlike tones in the shot -- these Central Park West shots
were some of the most successful. Taken from the gloriously wide
sidewalk of CPW. Even the line of trees had conveniently a gap...
- Majestic Apartments
More balancing of the tripod over CPW subway grates.
- San Remo Apartments
Slightly underexposed, but shows the form of the towers on the
western facade. A rather long walk from location of the Majestic
shot. After this, a jump into the subway.
- Arthur A. Schomburg Plaza
The other (and already at the time, the only) Twin Towers, a gateway
to Harlem/Barrio. Shot from Central Park North -- I took my time
switching between a tripod location on the street(!) and sidewalk due
to some visual obstruction that precluded moving back along the
sidewalk. That's why the south tower is somewhat unacceptably partially
obstructed by foliage.
- Taino Towers
The northernmost entry on the site (at least until the 125th St.
office tower, the "Clinton House" of later days will be included;
this time I abandoned
shooting it). A long, winding walk from the 125th St. station and
bagging them from a good vantage point. Maybe less clearcut in their
Modernist zeal as expected (not least due to the multi-coloured
drapery on the windows), but here they are nevertheless.
- Annenberg Building
Down the Upper East Side. A darkish rendition of the overpowering
black mass halfway between the CBS and 1 Liberty Plz. in its
appearance. A little too much
converging verticals due to the tightness of space, but that was the
best position I could come up with.
- Jacob Ruppert Brewery Project 1
(one) The colours (and proper exposure) are returning again -- a general
view of the Rupperts from a street corner. One of my fave shots.
(two) Hike down Third Ave. and to The Ruppert itself. Exposure
starts to wander off a bit.
(three) The Knickerbocker: both exposure and colour saturation off again.
That may be explained somewhat by the fact of that it started to rain
just as I shot this -- afraid of the drops hitting the lens, tilted
upwards as the camera was... A nicely dramatic shot, tho', from the
project's pedestrian throughfare -- and one that was open to the public
too, a wonder in itself. (Through the rain towards the Lex station and
into a nearby B&N bookstore in the hope of the rain abating to allow me
to continue using the remaining daylight hours shooting in the area.
No such luck, after emerging out with one more experience of dubious
clerk "service" as well as two books that I still, 32 months later,
haven't finished -- including the long sought-after Piers Bizony's
"2001 - Filming the Future" -- I had to run in the rain to the subway
and back to the hotel.)
- GE Building
A direct, evening reshoot, with better results.
- Sheraton Centre
The last shot of the day from the incourt plaza of the Equitable.
It was starting to rain to the extent that good photography was
hampered. Homeless people were settling on the benches nearby
as I composed and shot, hit by the rain underneath the (uncovered)
beams of the plaza.
- Olympic Tower 1
(one) A rather catastrophic pic with its severe underexposure and
bluish tint. One more to remake.
(two) A rather dramatic shot, complete with golden tint.
- Bear Stearns World Headquarters 1
(one) A morning shot from 47th Street. A good vantage point for a (very
(two) A better vantage point along Madison Avenue -- for bagging the
top, at least.
The one that required two "goes"; on the second day, a police on
the Vanderbilt Avenue denied, albeit in a polite way
(something that would change with the next image!), photography,
so I left, returning on Sunday, unhampered, to bag the building.
3 Park Avenue
A sidetrack to Park Ave. and setting the tripod to get an angled
shot of the building.
Empire State Building
A shot of the top from Park Avenue.
1065 Sixth Avenue
A spur of the moment while walking on 40th St. toward Bryant
Park. Tripod up and four shots from the sidewalk.
275 Madison Avenue
An impulse shot from Bryant Park. Tripod and darkish bottom with a
"guard" of folded sunshades.
10 E 40th Street
A reshoot from Bryant Park. Shot on a 'pod in a rapid fashion just
like the 275.
An unsuccessful reshoot, never used on the site. Crouching by the
low-set tripod and in vain waiting for a break in the endless flow
of pedestrians. All shots too underexposed, too crowded.
500 Fifth Avenue 1
(one) Another reshoot, with the presence of the sunshine giving the
photo, for once, some tones...
(two) A dramatic, spur-of-the-moment shot from 42nd.
Fred F. French Building
A shot from 45th St., with the tripod set up near the "dwelling"
of a sleeping homeless, who mumbled something to himself and
Piaget Building 1
Darkish shots from the canyons, showing the building from
both north and east.
A remake of a 1997 shot from the same spot. A nice, crisp shot,
albeit the surrounding buildings are underexposed.
A grayish shot that conceals the light limestone facade.
To be redone.
520 Madison Avenue
A tricky choice between underexposure of the shadows and washing out
the reflecting facade. Shot from a conveniently placed plaza of an
even more conveniently diagonal-shaped building.
345 Park Avenue
The 345 from the corner of the Racquet and Tennis Club.
The iconic Look from 50th St. Dullish in tone, but otherwise
New York Palace Hotel
An idea somewhat marred by the underexposure and the "twisting" of
the top of the hotel tower. A tripod shot from next to the steps
leading to the archdiocese building behind St. Patrick's. The twisting
might be partly due to the fact that I indeed couldn't get the camera
(and the tripod!) to the exact mid-point of the facade as that would
have been in front of the steps -- and someone would inevitably have
been very disturbed had I moved there...
International Building 1
(one) One in a series of shots from the St. Patrick's forecourt. At
some point, being told tripods are not allowed...
(two) A reshoot of a 1997 shot along Rockefeller Plaza. The ground is
especially underexposed. The shot could have used some westerly
shadows to accentuate the jagged setbacks.
Another from St. Patrick's, a more "traditional" view of the
One of the long-delayed entries. A difficult case of exposure,
with the top being very light, whereas the lower portions are
in the dark. In the foreground, sculptures on the J.C. Penney's
From the 1 Penn Plaza, well, plaza. Shot with a tripod, if I
remember correctly, although the next one...
New Yorker Hotel
The mountain of a hotel from the 1 Penn Plaza. A darkish complexion,
but brings out the nature of the building rather nicely. Shot with
string-balancing instead of tripod due to security intervention.
Westyard Distribution Center
The concrete-faced mammoth of the Penn railyards shot from
within (just another) construction site covered sidewalk,
this time of the Farley Post Office Building. (Walking around
the vast Farley Bldg., one had a sense of the scale of the
structure that spanned two entire city blocks, flanked by its
1 Penn Plaza
The "Playstation 2" shot... Crouching on the bridge leading across the
Penn rail yards, next to a low-set tripod to give the strong vertical
feeling of the black slab. Another underexposed, albeit strong, shot
on an overcast day.
N.Y. Life Insurance Co. Building & Merchandise Mart
(one) Exposure gone awry again
(two) A short tripod-lugging hop from the location of the previous
(three) An impulse shot from a side street
A reddish tint and dull tones but at last a "well-recognized"
elevation of the building.
Metropolitan Life Insurance Building
A well-exposed limestone facade, for once. A shot from across
1/10, MONDAY 5 PM - 7 PM
A ride from Madison Square to the Brooklyn Bridge station,
all under a cloak of normalcy until one emerged from within
the Municipal Bldg. station and the strong and acrid smell of
burnt plastic hit one's nose. The cuts on the streets for
emergency cable and pipelines as well as the increased presence
of police also told about something unusual. Although I kept
as far away from the WTC (or Ground Zero, into which it had
transformed only two weeks ago) as possible, the smell was
a constant reminder of the tragedy (only abating in the deepest
recesses of the downtown Strand bookstore). Living in Lower
Manhattan must have been trying in the first months after being
allowed back in -- the cordoning-off of Lower Manhattan had
in fact been lifted only just prior to me confirming this
late-September trip, first reserved in June.
- U.S. Courthouse
Shot from next to barriers closing the Javits plaza off-limits.
Possibly it's just the policeman in the bottom left of the photo who
came to me and asked about a permission and told about the area being
of Fed buildings and thus not allowed to be shot -- as well as about
an earlier confiscation of photo equipment from some unlucky punter
and the difficulty he had of gaining it back. Luckily, he didn't
properly hear the the word (starting with "para...") that was
included in my startled answer, otherwise I could have been in a
world of s**t, given the heightened sense of hurt (or was it "alert")
in the NYPD at the time. So, I grabbed my tripod and camera without
dismantling anything and took off happy that I could... Oh, the photo
then: dull and grey but something anyway.
- 40 Wall Street
A shot from the Legion Memorial Sq. in front of the Fed. Surprisingly,
a group of police officers passing a short distance away on the square
didn't react in any way to either the photography of skyscrapers or
the tripod... Rather flatly underexposed one.
- Chase Manhattan Bank
A reshoot. Despite some underexposure at the bottom, one of the faves.
- 88 Pine Street/Wall Street Plaza
A shot from underneath the FDR and the last photo(s) taken during the
trip Except for a shot of Saarinen's TWA at JFK.
One of my faves in its crispness and colours. I was pretty nervous
while taking the shot and well expected to be harrassed, in a Downtown
sidestreet as I was with my camera and a potential "terrorism
The last in line. Shot from the departures level of the JFK