May 17, 2011

Changing Seasons: Spring in New York



LL Bean Buck, October 2008.

I procrastinated. The winter slowly meandered towards spring, but was constantly set back a few rainy days. Just as I grew accustomed to evening walks through Central Park, back to back days of biblical rain checked my seasonal optimism.



Paul Smith Canvas Sneaker, January 2009.

So, I waited and pondered which shoe to use.



Common Projects sneaker, April 2009.

Scroll through the photos quickly. It looks like a stop motion film, with all of the shoes skewed towards the left.



Van’s Authentic, August 2009.

I still have these things stuffed in a closet. They smell like the plague.



Ralph Lauren Wingtip, October 2009.

In the past, my selection has been traditional, with some of my favorites being a Buck, a Brogue and a Danner boot. However, since leaving Maine and moving to New York, my taste has changed. Partially due to my days spent surrounded by the “American Heritage” aesthetic, recently I have started appreciating more pragmatic, purpose-driven items.


Danner Mountain Light II, December 2009



British Walker Buck, April 2010.

Instead of carrying around my camera and laptop in a vintage backpack, I bought a GoRuck Gr1 (partially in my preparation for the GoRuck Challenge in Boston). I also opted for a technical down jacket over a wool coat on my Saturday morning walks.



LL Bean Boot, October 2010.

You won’t see me in Crocs or zip off nylon shorts anytime soon.



LL Bean Signature Work Boot, January 2o11.

But instead of hunting eBay for vintage Omega, I have been poking around looking at contemporary Sinn’s and Luminox’s.



Nike SFB May 2011.

Finally, spring stayed around long enough for me to grab my camera and my Nike SFB chucka and head to Central Park. As the sun set, I sat reflecting the evolution of my taste over the last three years and pondering where it would be in the next three. Setting the ISO and aperture to 1600 and 4.5, respectively, I threw my shoe in the air the way I have for the last 10 seasons.
Here are some more links,

January 25, 2011

Changing Seasons: White in New York


LL Bean Buck, October 2008.

I missed the the infamous Nor’easter known as Snowpacalypse. 3000 miles away, I read my twitter feed, saw the headlines and spoke with my friends in New York. I missed the party, arriving the next morning for the cleanup of the beer cans, sticky footprints and dirty dishes.

Paul Smith Canvas Sneaker, January 2009.

Luckily, more storms loomed on the horizon, nurturing the prospects that I too would enjoy a snow day in New York. A few weeks later, I awoke one morning to the familiar scraping of a snowplow.

Common Projects sneaker, April 2009.

Outside my window three inches of fresh snow smoothed the jagged rooflines of countless apartment buildings. Throwing my camera and gloves into my REI backpack, I stopped by Joe’s Coffee before cutting into the park at 81st street.

Van’s Authentic, August 2009.

Steam rose from my coffee like exhaust from a muffler as I scuffled my feet through the fresh covering of snow. The occasional jogger clad in spandex and Nike’s made crunching sounds in the light snow.

Ralph Lauren Wingtip, October 2009.


Danner Mountain Light II, December 2009

Arriving at the rock outcropping, I removed my LL Bean Signature Work Boot, adjusted the settings on my 5d Mark II and focused my manual Zeiss 35mm f2.o on an arbitrary spot, some three feet in front of me.

British Walker Buck, April 2010.

Shooting with a much narrower field of view than my old 24-105 f4, I threw the boot farther away. Snapping at the apex, I sat for a half an hour or so until I filled my flash card and couldn’t feel my fingers.

LL Bean Boot, October 2010.


LL Bean Signature Work Boot, January 2o11.

Consumed by my new life, time goes by fast here. It feels like just last week I moved into my apartment and started my job. I am already anticipating spring around the corner. These nine photos remind of how much my life has changed in the last two and a half years. Try taking a photo, drawing or writing some thoughts down in the same place each season. I bet you will be surprised by the positive unindtended consequences.

Here are some more links,
Changing Seasons (Picasa),
Changing Seasons (ART).

October 26, 2010

Changing Seasons: Fall in New York


LL Bean buck over Colby’s campus in fall 2008, a few weeks after starting A Restless Transplants and buying my first camera.

An over ambitious sip of Joe’s coffee scalded my tongue. Sucking and blowing repeatedly in attempt to ventilate my mouth, my breath hung on the cool mornings air as I sat on a rock outcropping in Central Park. Rising over Midtown, the morning’s light cast long shadows over the lake and through the autumn foliage.

Canvas Sneaker over Colby’s Quad in January of 2009.

As June quickly slid into September, the reality that I wasn’t returning to Maine for another winter slowly took shape. Each changing shade of foliage and brisk morning helped confirm my permanent acclimation to my new life in New York. Three times in the last few weeks, I packed my REI backpack with my 5D Mark II and lenses and headed towards the rock peninsula near 79th street and Central Park West with the hope of capturing the changing season with a shoe. Despite successfully avoiding joggers, tourists and leashed French bulldogs, my shots failed to turn out.

Common Projects sneaker over Cobly’s Quad in March of 2009.

Last Sunday morning, I woke early and dug through my pile of shoes. Perhaps as homage to my time spent in Maine or their relevance in the frequent mud puddles familiar with fall in New York, I grabbed my eight-inch Bean boot and headed towards door.

Van’s Authentic over Colby’s Quad in August of 2009

Ralph Lauren Wingtip over Colby’s quad in October of 2009

The morning’s light bounced the buildings of the Upper West Side as I grabbed a cup of coffee at Joe’s and headed towards Central Park’s lake intent on waiting for the sun to rise above the buildings of midtown. Patiently, I sat facing south towards Manhattan’s skyline. Periodically testing my coffee, I tuned out tourists’ conversations and turned an occasional glance at a group of forty-somethings performing a lost east Asian ritual associated with Subarus and merino wool socks.

Danner Mountain Light II over Colby’s quad in December of 2009.

Checking my watch, I realized that fifteen minutes had marched past and I reclaimed my camera from my drawstring backpack. I removed my left Bean boot, set the frame and tossed my shoe in the air.

British Walker Buck over Colby’s Quad in April of 2010.

Taking a sip of my now tepid coffee, I picked the boot off the exposed bedrock and tossed it up in the air for another countless shot. Reflecting off the glassy water, the morning’s light warmed the chain-link sole as I fired the shutter near the height of the boots arc. Looking down at the preview screen, I couldn’t help but smile. I like calling a new place home.

Here are some more links,
Changing Seasons (Picasa),
Changing Seasons (ART).

April 15, 2010

Changing Seasons: My Last Spring


“I hate that sadness in your eyes,
But Angie, Angie,
Ain’t it time we said goodbye?”

My headphones echoed as I sat on a wooden bench bequeathed by some wealthy couple in hopes of getting their underachieving offspring accepted to college. Focusing the lens on the edge of the tongue, I took a second look through the viewfinder and tossed my dirty white buck in the air.

The shutter of my camera thwaapped like an automatic Nerf gun as the buck hung for an instant, suspended a few feet above the recently exposed grass and then awkwardly flopped back down. What started as a means to pass time seven seasons ago, grew and evolved into a defining part of my life. At first, I waited to tell my friends and family of my new crush, deliberating until the spark caught and I knew it wasn’t another one of my many short lived and often unrealistic excitements.

Something was different. Maybe I was mature enough to stay committed for more than a few weeks, or maybe I had found something that fit my intense and stubborn personality. Telling myself it was both, I dove in like an eight year old into Karate classes, hoping that one day I too could chop bricks in half and wear a black belt.

As the seasons marched on, I muscled through the slow and enjoyed the best, leaving my aspirations of business school and board meetings behind like a beleaguering ex-girlfriend. Motivated by a new passion that fueled my curiosity and confident in the success of my new experiences, I started acting on more impulses and seized opportunities with the disregard of a love-struck teenager.

Before I knew it, a few coincidental activities became routine and I was captivated by something that I never knew existed a year before. I enjoyed the security of finding strength in something created by passion and creativity, yet available to only a few.

As the situational end of my relationship with Maine and the free time necessary to work on photography and write for my blog marched forward two posts a week at a time, I slowly started to realize how fortunate I am to have had them. Like with any tasty beverage, I didn’t realize how good it was until the last sip.

I waited and rationalized like the inevitable end to a serious relationship. “Tomorrow the sky will be brighter and the grass greener,” I told myself a few dozen times after the last hope of winter died early in March. Finally, on Tuesday, I packed a lone British Walker White buck in size 13 into my pack along with my Canon 5d Mark II and biked to school. Sitting by myself on the wooden bench, turned on Angie by the Rolling Stones and pulled out my camera.

“Come on baby dry your eyes
But Angie, Angie,
Ain’t it good to be alive?”

Here are some more links,
Changing Seasons (Picasa),
Changing Seasons (ART).