Tuesday, June 30, 2009


We should all be so lucky to have the feeling I got.

Like most days that change your life — in ways big and small — June 27, 2009 started out quietly. I wasn't even planning on going to the track, I was gonna go on Sunday. But your own plans, and the plans of what we call fate — well, I saw what happened when I let the soft embrace of my fate take me to a place I could not imagine.

The world of the New York City racetracks is not large, it is quite small actually, but make no mistake, it is a world that has it's own rules and structure — just like a city. Going to Belmont racetrack for the first time was just like going to New York City itself for the first time.

I was nobody.

It was a whole world of people I didn't know and things I hadn't seen, and I came with the same exact ambitions and love and fear and an overwhelming desire to be seen and heard above the
big noisy microcosm. And I FELT like it was going to happen, I just felt it, but feeling something like that when you have no idea why and no idea how — that is humbling. Because it's weird and strong and a mystery and it is up to you to make the moves.

Just like in a horse race. Exactly like in a horse race. You have the horse you've got and you are the jockey, and there are alot of jocks next to you, all seemingly wanting the same thing. I didn't even realize what kind of jockey I was till a year or two later when I started calling myself lensjockey.

Sarah K. Andrew is a lensjockey too.

Sarah K. Andrew

That's the beautiful talented Sarah K. at Aqueduct racetrack in Jamaica, Queens.

She has a fascinating blog, and very cool ideas — here is a sample — it's about me, and my top ten music faves — but who ever thought of asking track photographers what their top ten faves would be? Only someone who goes by the name Rock and Racehorses. Only.


if you have not seen Sarah's view of the racetracks, you haven't seen the racetracks. You just haven't. Like all great lensjockeys, her view is irreplaceable. I think myself that to have a rock approach to shooting horses, jockeys and races is the best approach there is. It is the only way to inject style and modern action into such a traditional and relatively untouched environment.

When I came to the tracks with my desires and ambitions and my style and my view, one of the few who got me, and I think she got me really fast, lengths and lengths before others, lengths, lets say the lengths are years... the one who really sees me, is Sarah K. Andrew. And the picture she took of me last weekend, mere days ago, was a picture that I have been waiting for in the back of my mind, never knowing what it would look like or when it would happen, or by whos hand it would come.

yeah, I know it's a picture of me, but I see it as more than that. it is a picture of a photographer at a NYC track and it is a rock photo. It rocks. It's Pete Townsend, it's Jon Bon Jovi,

it's rock and roll, and it's at the racetracks and it's a photographer holding a remote for a camera to shoot a race. The picture she took of me is the first of it's kind at the tracks. it's the best illustration I have seen yet of a photographer as rockstar, there might be others out there of course, but this was a pure and direct result of two different people. I can't post bigger images of hers to this blog right now as I write because she doesn't allow the access to her pictures on flickr that I would need, but she's got shots!

That little black and white shot of me at the top of this post, she took during a moment that just happened, it was kindof a joke really. But it turned into something more. In a small quiet way, she turned me into a star.

Check out her blog, check out her pictures. Remember her name.



thanks Sarah, that was a little personal fantasy of mine you made come true. hahah

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

dogseat, the photographer

ERIC HARVEY BROWN - also know as dogseat on flickr.

ERIC HARVEY BROWN - also someone who is indescribable in words. So here is a picture, this is from a set of his called "365 dogseats" — 


I can't remember which pictures I saw of his first. I think it was one of his pictures about an event called the Phagwah.


this is probably it.

this is another picture of the event that got in the NY Times.


Somehow, even then I could tell that he was someone that would be really really fun to follow. I couldn't decide though if I wanted to follow him for his pictures or the way he seemed to be someone so like a rockstar. He just — he just seemed to be too much to overlook. His collection called "365 dogseats" should be mandatory flickr viewing. More than almost anyone I have come across on flickr, 

(and I realize that the flickr world in NYC is a vast and unknowable galaxy of photographers)

Eric Harvey Brown seems to me to be the photographer to follow if you want a real and human and unretouched view of some part of humanity that is brave and unkempt in this age of plastic surgery and unrealistic beauty/handsome standards.

like this:


I never saw anything on flickr like that. A guy who posts a picture like that to flickr — well this is a guy you can trust. You can trust any picture this photographer takes, because there is no attempt at self illusion. That is what I adore about dogseat. Even his name dogseat conjures up visions of, well, dogs seats, perhaps rubbing against your nice clean carpet of human illusions about our bodies and our functions and our silliness.

this is another picture you can trust:


it's of a cat called "Smut." I highly recommend the Smut collection. It's endearing in it's backwoods charm. You will giggle and wish there had ever been a Saturday morning cartoon about such a cat. Precious.

this is another picture you can trust:


haha oh Eric, Eric, B. How lovely to trust. Photo "DSC_4690.jpg" is a pooptacular statement of nature's (and a dogseat's) vernacular.

Not all photography should be a grand statement. I feel that the language of photography is ill-served by the idea that the photographer should be invisible and that the world of photographic coverage should look like a stock photography catalog, all smooth and smell-less and unhairy and overgroomed. Eric Brown is the best ever reminder of that concept to me.

so if you want to see the unkempt underbelly of NYC photography, you should seriously follow dogseat. he's everything alot of people aren't.

this is my favorite picture of Eric, it's a self portrait, and it is beautiful.


had to put that in here. he doesn't always take pictures of the smeary unbeautiful. This is a shot of his from his latest trip. He want to Alaska to compete in a Beard and Moustache competition. (He came in Fourth, here is the set of pictures from that wonderful and witty competition — http://www.flickr.com/photos/dogseat/sets/72157618730271109/

I think that this is my favorite shot from that trip.


That's all Folks!


Tuesday, June 16, 2009


steamy angels

It made me so jealous. When I saw it in the "contact" sheet of pictures that you get in flickr, I just wished I'd taken it soooo badly. I have been trying to get something like that of Grand Central Station's gods and goddesses for so long! And there they were! 

The colors are exquisite and the composition and framing are perfection. The Gods have spoken.

Jason is a lensjockey who covers the city and shoots the real city. His eye is simple, direct, subtle, clean, energetic, and it is no wonder that his pictures are often used by those who wish to show a simple yet eloquent idea about the city.

Readers of gothamist, CURBED, THE NEW YORK OBSERVER — web sites about this awesome city — are familiar with his images. 

Images like:


views from high line

high line

...images like these, with their smart poetry and clean lines — these are images that describe the simple truths of the city — the beautiful truths of the city we all walk around in each day. I often imagine Jason Kuffer walking around the city with his eyes forever opened to the delicious tidbits any real New Yorker cannot help but nibble.

It took me awhile to appreciate his images, they are so unlike my own. Jason Kuffer's images whisper where my own images are more aggressive. It took me some time to understand his own language, but now that I know it I love it. His pics are like sushi to me, little raw tasty elegant portions of the city.

*smacks lips* hahaha
have a taste! It's on Jason!


(that's him!)

Sometimes he sees something like this that is just so freakin unbelievable though, he definitely has range...

Brooklyn Bridge

I mean look at that! He can go from a whisper to a proclamation about this city. Effortlessly.

As lensjockeys go, "Digiart2001 | jason.kuffer" deserves attention. He's active and has a great sense of style and humor, and he gets around. I suggest that you follow how work. You will see the small and the monumental... in ways that embrace you. And this beautiful city.


Thanks Jason for your pictures of this city I love so so much.