New York: The Original Gotham. Southern View from the Empire State Building
Inspiration: Earlier this summer, I decided to be a tourist in my city. Isn't it often the case that the longtime residents of a city know the least about its landmarks? One of the first places most tourists head is the fabled Empire State Building. On the day I went, throngs of people lined up to take the elevators to the top, cameras in hand. While I waited in line, a guide yelled out that it would take about 3 hours to get to the top unless one used the express line. Three hours?? Really? Seriously? I realized why most New Yorkers haven't been to the top of the Empire State Building. No one has three consecutive hours to give up in a line for any reason. No one blinked an eye (except for me) and no one moved. Why? The express line costs twice as much. I looked at the empty express line and thought "That's mine." So I hopped out of the long line and into the empty express. VIP all the way. I was in, on top of, and out of the Empire State within 45 minutes. The result: A shot that is probably quite ordinary. Nothing breathtaking, creative or powerful. Except for the City. A tangled, "in your face," "take it or leave it," uncouth, beast of a city. A character in its own right.