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Weekly Photo Challenge: Urban

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“The city is a fact in nature, like a cave, a run of mackerel or an ant-heap. But it is also a conscious work of art, and it holds within its communal framework many simpler and more personal forms of art. Mind takes form in the city; and in turn, urban forms condition mind.” Lewis Mumford

Weekly Photo Challenge: Urban… Os Gemeos mural in Boston

Weekly Photo Challenge: Urban… The need for attention on Wall Street, NY

Weekly Photo Challenge: Urban… That distinct shade of yellow; Taxicabs on 5th Avenue in from of the The Met Museum in NY

Weekly Photo Challenge: Urban… The street vendor in NY

“An urban area is characterized by higher population density and vast human features in comparison to areas surrounding it.” Wikipedia
I don’t live in an urban area anymore… I visit NYC frequently but I live in the suburbs, and the pace of life, the landscape and design/use of space differ greatly from that of the City. When I think Urban, I think crowds=human density, tall buildings, huge murals/art, food/merchandise carts, public transportation, and the accompanying noise that gives every major city a special quality.

“URBANITY, n. The kind of civility that urban observers ascribe to dwellers in all cities but New York. Its commonest expression is heard in the words, “I beg your pardon,” and it is not consistent with disregard of the rights of others. Ambrose Bierce

Weekly Photo Challenge: Urban… housing density with homelessness

Weekly Photo Challenge: Urban…

Weekly Photo Challenge: Urban… Frank Gehry meets NY

Weekly Photo Challenge: Urban… A slice of urban life

Major cities have their share of homelessness juxtaposed against the backdrop of huge and magnificent buildings; many of them residential complexes… The irony of it never fails to amaze me. How do we justify homelessness in the land of plenty? The answers are both simple and complicated…

“The car has become the carapace, the protective and aggressive shell, of urban and suburban man.” Marshall McLuhan

Weekly Photo Challenge: Urban… Transportation; public and personal

Weekly Photo Challenge: Urban… MTA Buses

Weekly Photo Challenge: Urban… Grand Central Station

Weekly Photo Challenge: Urban… The Subway Station…

Access to all forms of transportation is imperative in a huge city and NY has many to choose from… I love Grand Central for outer borough travel. The Subway is fast and somewhat dirty- think big rats, and the buses are generally slow… However, it all works.

“They have no home town, urban life is standardized and they come from a place called Generica” John Perry Barlow

Weekly Photo Challenge: Urban… It’s about the people… Occupy Trinity Church/Wall St folk still around

Weekly Photo Challenge: Urban… Some of my students acting  like typical Nu Yawkers

Weekly Photo Challenge: Urban… Occupy folk

Weekly Photo Challenge: Urban… Mike … another organizer

Weekly Photo Challenge: Urban… The cops are people too.

The people are the salt of the earth and make a huge difference in the lifestyle and culture of any city. New York has the full range of fascinating people; including all nationalities and faiths. While the above isn’t fully inclusive of all the faces of NYC, it shows a portion of the range… More Later. I’ll be by to visit you too! More below!

“A peasant becomes fond of his pig and is glad to salt away its pork. What is significant, and is so difficult for the urban stranger to understand, is that the two statements are connected by an and not by a but.” John Berger

Weekly Photo Challenge: Urban… And about places too… Interior of Trinity Church on Wall Street

Weekly Photo Challenge: Urban… Grand Central

Weekly Photo Challenge: Urban… The vendor’s corner

Weekly Photo Challenge: Urban… The Trinity Church Cemetery; an oasis in the midst of noise

“Living in cities is an art, and we need the vocabulary of art, of style, to describe the peculiar relationship between man and material that exists in the continual creative play of urban living. The city as we imagine it, then, soft city of illusion, myth, aspiration, and nightmare, is as real, maybe more real, than the hard city one can locate on maps in statistics, in monographs on urban sociology and demography and architecture.” Jonathan Raban

There are so many hidden nooks and treasured places in the city. I have barely scratched the surface here. Although I lived in the City during my college years, I moved to Park Slope after I married, and then moved to the suburbs when the kids were due. I will venture out soon to document my old neighborhoods; the Upper Westside and Brooklyn, but these and the shots above are not of them at all… Enjoy anyway and I will add more photos later. Thank you!

This is a pivotal time for urban regeneration. We must take a long term view. Richard Rogers

Have an awesome weekend! 😉 Thank you for stopping by! Hope you enjoyed this! What are your thoughts? What photos did you share on URBAN to fit the challenge? Was it easy/hard to find photos that supported your perspective on the subject? Were you drawn to certain types of photos for the prompt? Do share? Thank you! 🙂 😉

*Please bear with me as I continue to catch up on your blogs and commenting… Thank you all for your patience! 🙂

My fellow bloggers were equally creative with their selections. I listed several via Zemanta & WP Daily Post below. (I will update it and add more). We all appreciate trackbacks/ping-backs and Likes from fellow bloggers too! Check out how others interpreted the theme – URBAN – also below. ***

This post was inspired by a prompt from WP Daily Post: Weekly Photo Challenge: URBAN. This week’s photo challenge is guest hosted by Terence S. Jones of A Guy With a Camera. Read on for more about this week’s theme and his photography tips! Urban. The idea behind urban photography is to photograph your city and the streets where you grew up as they are. Unlike the Photoshopped pictures to which we are accustomed nowadays, urban photography presents a more direct, unaltered view of life. It is about documenting urban living space and how people adapt their environment to certain needs and vice versa. Urban photography shots provide cultural, social, economical, and ecological context all at once, and can capture social tension. Think of urban photography as a complement to street photography—it provides the context in which street photography unfolds. Share a photo that means URBAN to you!

Positive Motivation Tip: Urban life invites us to join in a constant dance of opposites; the beautiful and the ugly, rich and poor, glamor and gritty, fun and fury. Each pairing provides us with a slice of urban life and some legends… Take it or leave it!

PHOTO CREDITS/ATTRIBUTIONS: All Photos from my personal collection.

Until Next Time…
Ask. Believe. Receive. ©
Elizabeth Obih-Frank
Mirth and Motivation
Positive Kismet

109 Comments leave one →
  1. 25/08/2012 5:51 am

    An excellent gallery of New York pictures. I think you really capture the essence of the city. I love that quote about the car as a carapace! 🙂

    • 26/08/2012 6:52 pm

      TY! I would have loved to share shots from my old neighborhoods but I was going hiking and had to share what I already had available… All good. 😉

  2. 25/08/2012 5:52 am

    like your pics of (to me) exotic US uran centres 🙂 & thanks for the pingback

    • 26/08/2012 6:53 pm

      TY for the pingback too… I enjoyed your shots. 😉

  3. 25/08/2012 8:14 am

    I enjoyed your urban tour and just one thought before I go…it would ‘suck’ getting lost in urban areas such as these…lol!
    Love the occupy folk with the little dog chilling! 🙂

    • 26/08/2012 6:56 pm

      NYC is varied… I showed a different slice of the apple. Do visit. TY! 😆

      • 27/08/2012 9:03 pm

        Hope to visit NYC…one day…*sigh*

  4. 25/08/2012 9:44 am

    There is so much to see and do in NYC that you will never run out of pics to take. Thx for sharing.

    • 26/08/2012 6:57 pm

      TY Miriam and so true too… For everyone, there is something!

  5. 25/08/2012 10:04 am

    Your NY article really shows URBAN and reminds me of NY memories.
    It was only 11 months though, I used to live in NY.
    Your article really brought me back to the time I was living there.
    This is very well compositioned story telling post, thank you for sharing this!

    • 26/08/2012 7:01 pm

      TY for your feedback Dunden! I love beautiful things and yet, it is important to show other sides so we don’t forget those who need our attention. 😉

  6. 25/08/2012 11:39 am

    I love urban. Philadelphia is urban but much different than NYC. Nothing is like NYC. I don’t think I could live there but I do love to visit. It recharges my batteries!
    Great photos as always Elizabeth.

    • 26/08/2012 7:04 pm

      TY Barb! I love Philly. I love NYC too, but like every urban city, it has its challenges. This is just a slice of the Big Apple.:-)

  7. 25/08/2012 2:15 pm

    loved this trip around…the homless vet made me sad though

    • 26/08/2012 7:08 pm

      Yes, it made me pause too… It’s a reminder that the city that never sleeps has everything in it; happy, sad, courageous and more. TY! 😉

  8. 25/08/2012 3:17 pm

    What a wonderful photo journey. Can really feel the energy all about even in the “still” images.

    • 26/08/2012 7:15 pm

      TY for your feedback and glad to see you here! 🙂 I was downtown on Wall Street and decided to take some shot while there. Lots of reminders in that area. 😉

  9. 25/08/2012 4:26 pm

    Great post of your NYC visits, with wonderful photos!

    • 26/08/2012 8:18 pm

      TY! There is so much to see and say about the City that never Sleeps… I felt some of this most folk choose to not cover. 😉

  10. 25/08/2012 5:32 pm

    Nice photos. I’m interested in how NY is.

    • 26/08/2012 8:19 pm

      Yes… same here and how all of it is not just the pretty parts. Every city has its gritty parts too. 😉

  11. 25/08/2012 7:57 pm

    Excellent post my friend 🙂

    • 26/08/2012 8:19 pm

      TY Jake! Will stop by to see what your new theme is. 🙂

  12. 25/08/2012 9:36 pm

    I love the photos of Trinity Church. So beautiful. I will be in the heart of downtown Los Angeles this week on two different occasions. I would be able to submit many photos very clearly urban. An interesting topic to photograph and you did a great job! 🙂

    • 26/08/2012 8:30 pm

      Good for you! Enjoy your visit downtown. If you can gain access to the rooftop restaurant/bar at The Standard, you’d be able to capture a panoramic view of downtown LA. 🙂

  13. 26/08/2012 4:40 am

    Someday I will live in NYC! Great pictures, awesome post!

    • 26/08/2012 8:30 pm

      And I pray you do! TY for your feedback. 😉

  14. 26/08/2012 5:22 am

    Great interpretation of a city that houses big dreams and also displays great heartache. The church is beautiful. Thank you for sharing so many different views of one city 🙂

    • 26/08/2012 8:31 pm

      TY Joy! Well said: it is the city of big dreams and heartaches… 🙂

  15. 26/08/2012 6:20 am

    the first picture is pretty cool and nice city life shots 🙂

    • 26/08/2012 8:32 pm

      TY Joshi! I love that colorful mural to and that is why I added it to my selection even though it was taken in Boston. 😉

  16. 26/08/2012 4:30 pm

    Great pics!

  17. 26/08/2012 7:50 pm

    Lovely NY pictures. Grand Central Station always looks so busy, isn’t it? Which subway station is that? Also what is it about ‘your students acting like typical Nu Yawkers?’ I wonder if I’m a typical Nu Yawker or a New Yorker 🙂 I’ve heard so much of us Nu Yawkers I don’t know where I belong.

    • 26/08/2012 8:38 pm

      GCS is always busy except late at night… I keep forgetting to take a late night shot when it is practically empty. Also, the students were demonstrating their “WTF do you want?” look and hand gesture… It was an inside joke and staged. 😆
      It’s up to you to decide or maybe up to those who hear you speak to decide… It’s really all good! 😆 TY!

  18. 26/08/2012 7:57 pm

    I think you really captured some soul/spirit/essence here. Very, very nice.

    • 26/08/2012 8:39 pm

      TY for your kind words. I was trying for something else… I was downtown on Wall Street and in a different space. So I hope it worked. 🙂

    • 26/08/2012 8:46 pm

      Aw! TY! and so did yours… Gorgeous colors juxtaposed against bare trees. Loved it! 😉

  19. 27/08/2012 3:46 am

    I’m amused by your snap shot of the Occupy folk …

    • 27/08/2012 3:59 am

      Good! I knew you’d like it. 😆

      • 27/08/2012 4:32 am

        I like your chosen quotation:
        “Mind takes form in the city;
        and in turn,
        urban forms condition mind.”

        Lewis Mumford

      • 27/08/2012 5:58 am

        That part alone should be the entire quote. 😆

  20. 27/08/2012 4:20 am

    Exactly what I imagine a city to be: lots of buildings, lots of cars and lots of people. Great photos.

  21. 27/08/2012 4:28 am

    wow now this is a blog with different aspects to urban life, amazing how we all rub along together. I have to agree about homelessness, in the world of plenty is it right to have starving homeless people, but then I think you have to scratch the surface, and find the different reasons why?
    enjoyed your blog

    • 27/08/2012 10:18 am

      TY for your feedback… I happened upon the group as I was taking pictures down on Wall Street and they became part of the story… and I’m glad. 🙂

  22. 27/08/2012 5:21 am

    Good choices of Urban photography my friend , Thanks for sharing 🙂

    • 27/08/2012 5:57 am

      Thank again for your kind words and support. 😉

  23. 27/08/2012 6:28 am

    Definitely urban: the noise, the crowd, colors and vibrations. Love it 🙂

  24. 27/08/2012 7:19 am

    I so enjoyed your collection of photos. Some of these scenes were so familiar to me, having visited New York many times. The one of the homeless veteran is such a sad photo. I love your pic of Grand Central’s main concourse. I was awestruck when I first walked in there, and spent a lot of time gazing up at those stars. 🙂

    • 27/08/2012 10:20 am

      Yes, I knew you’d relate… It’s easy to only show the fun and good stuff; NYC has it all. I love Grand Central too… It is my favorite station for sure. 😉

  25. 27/08/2012 8:10 am

    Life … It’s colors, energies, and complexity …. great images!

  26. 27/08/2012 8:25 am

    You went all out(urban) Eliz, your photos look nice and creamy!

    • 27/08/2012 10:22 am

      TY! I enjoyed looking at all the submissions… It is my one big photo treat each week… Lots of variety and color. Enjoyed yours as well. 🙂

  27. 27/08/2012 12:23 pm

    Extraordinarily wide diversity, here!

  28. 27/08/2012 1:47 pm

    Always love urban scenes because they are PEOPLE scenes–which you have celebrated quite effectively here!

  29. 27/08/2012 5:39 pm

    Great interpretation! Thanks for the pingback!!

  30. 27/08/2012 6:06 pm

    Without sounding cliche, I live in ‘outback’ Australia and dream of visiting New York one day. Thanks for your insight of the Big Apple, just a little bit more motivation for me 🙂

    • 28/08/2012 1:33 am

      I do hope you are able to visit. I’d love to visit Australia in this lifetime too. TY! 🙂

  31. 27/08/2012 6:19 pm

    Fantastic post. You sure have captured the key things that make New York what it is – NYPD, subway, the food vendors…. 😉

    • 28/08/2012 1:34 am

      I agree with you as those features are a big part of what keeps NY going… TY for your comment! 🙂

  32. 28/08/2012 5:08 am

    Great shots

  33. 28/08/2012 7:10 am

    I’ve received my dose of urbana. Thank you.

  34. 28/08/2012 8:21 am

    thanks for a great series of shots and insight!

  35. 28/08/2012 4:20 pm

    Excellent examples of urban photography! NYC is quite the place for it.

    • 31/08/2012 2:56 pm

      Yes, NYC offers everything we need to see or imagine in an Urban area. 😉

  36. 29/08/2012 3:13 am

    Exciting images that shows the many fascinating facets of urban life.

    • 31/08/2012 2:58 pm

      TY IT and glad you fixed your colors. I love the city too. 😉

  37. 29/08/2012 11:59 am

    Love your photos of the city! They really do capture the feel of “urban”.

    • 31/08/2012 2:59 pm

      TY Leanne and will be by to support you… the time just flies! 🙂

  38. 29/08/2012 2:04 pm

    Super excellent colllection of photos depicting the “Urban” life. It’s a fabulous group that could easily tell a story all by themselves. I love the trains on Grand Central station. I’m surprised it was so empty. The food vendors were a nice reminder of when my Dad sold hotdogs after he retired from a job he did for 35 years. He made all of his onion, chili and green pepper toppings, everyday. He loved to cook and this was what he decided to do. He paid for my younger sisters’ medical school education with the money he made. What a guy…!!!!
    My entry is a short piece of what I have in my photos and mind about ‘Urban”. Hope you’ll take a look.
    Great post … thanks for the trip down memory lane.

    • 31/08/2012 3:00 pm

      TY for sharing your beautiful story… Will be round to check out your photos too. 🙂

  39. 30/08/2012 5:46 am

    This is exellent photos collection 😛

  40. 31/08/2012 3:33 pm

    I love seeing any and all pics of NYC! I really miss being able to zip down there for quick little overnight shopping or show trips and browsing your submissions was like a mini-getaway for me! Thank You!!!

    • 01/09/2012 4:32 am

      I do hope you can visit again sometime… It’s a great city with all the ups and downs of any major hub. 😉


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