IO Tillett Wright
I think I took this photo out of shock. A snap reaction to my brain synapses exploding at the sight of something so extraordinary. I was at a club in Williamsburg called Sugarland, at a party where all the go-go dancers were of indistinguishable gender, and were largely hairy. My friend and I retreated to a dark corner at the top of some steps, taken by storm, and suddenly this unicorn appeared, coming back from a smoke break. New York is nothing you can put in a box; someone that would be considered a freak show elsewhere, feels so perfect in their skin that they not only flaunt it, but also ask for money for seeing it. I squeezed off one shot, and this is the one I got.
Shot on black and white 35mm film
This photograph was taken at Terminal 5 in February at the Ed Banger 7th Anniversary Party. I was asked to shoot the press for Uffie and after some crazy complications with schedules, this happened around 1 am backstage using a point and shoot, instead of instilling my strict 6x7 policy. In New York, you can plan all you want, but the best shit happens randomly. Now these photographs are her album cover, artwork and current circulating press.
Shot with point and shoot Ricoh and 35mm color film
A few years ago I began to be interested in the 24-hour guards and entrances to the skyscrapers of midtown. I made regular trips up to midtown and photographed from 12 am to around 5 am. Sometimes the guards would stay in the same place for several minutes; unconsciously posing for my camera. I love how the mood of the image reminds me of midtown night: quiet but alive in its own way, just like much of New York.
Shot with a Mamiya 7 II on Kodak 106 VC
A few years ago we had the biggest snowfall in New York history, so myself and a bunch of friends took the train down to Coney Island. I shot this right when we got there and my friends Emily and Amanda began racing to the water. I grew up at the beach in Southern California so seeing the sand covered in snow all the way up to the water was surreal for me. I still love this photo to this day because it's not the typical scene people associate with New York. No matter how long I've lived here, it always seems to surprise me.
Shot with 35mm film camera
I took this picture of Alex Levine, singer/bassist of The So So Glos, at The Market Hotel, the now defunct all ages DIY venue in Brooklyn that they founded with promotor Todd P. The photo serves as a remnant of the illegal venue in its heyday. Alex was singing "Johnny Too Bad" by The Slickers when it was taken.
Shot with Canon EOS 3000 on Fugicolor Pro 800
I shot this photo last summer when I had just moved to New York from Austin. My friend Hamilton took me to this party where some of his friends had just moved into a new apartment and this crazy doberman pincher shrine thing was one of the only things they had. I guess it fell down so these girls were putting it back up. I like this photo because it reminds me of a time when I was new here and wide eyed about everything.
Shot with Contax G2 using Kodak Portra 400 vibrant color film
This "maca" (which is hammock in English) was brought from El Salvador and it completes my home in Long Island. I believe in the saying "if you can make it in New York, you can make it anywhere" and in my parents' case, they came from nothing and now have the luxuries of a beautiful vegetable garden, and a house with a white fence- and a hammock, just like in the movies.
Shot with a Hasselblad and Kodak Tri-x 400 film
A few weeks ago my friend and I decided to have a beach day on the Rockaways. As we were heading there, we coincidentally ran into another friend on the subway, and by happenstance met up with another mutual friend in Ft. Tilden. I love when everything just randomly comes together. This photo was shot on the way back, as we were crossing into broad channel from the Rockaways. When we pulled into the station we were alerted that there was a fire on the A train tracks. We were stranded for an hour, wandering Broad Channel, and feeling like we were in some sort of forgotten sea side town, not New York.
Shot with a Yashica T4
This was always my favorite laundry in south Williamsburg in Brooklyn; brimming with very faded, very old Chinese posters and its window filled with plants. The day I shot this photo I was dropping off some dry cleaning on my way out to shoot and figured I'd get a shot of the interior. The sun was pouring in through the front window and I picked up my camera to shoot, expecting the Hasidic man to shy away from the camera and step out of the shot. When he didn't, I asked him if he minded if he were in the photo and upon his approval reframed my shot. At the last second he pulled his hand in front of his face but stayed in place. New York is full of moments like this, where cultures come together in every place imaginable. Having a camera handy makes it possible to keep a record of these sorts of interactions.
Shot with a Pentax 67 with Fuji chrome and an on camera flash
This particular night included Laura (who happens to be a model, who happened to be wearing a floral print dress), when we happened upon this particular bodega with a lush display of flowers outside. A few of us were on a busy 2nd Avenue at 2am headed to the next place. I am more likely to wait for some action to unfold then to start directing, but this time I remember stopping short, holding up my camera and gesturing as if to say "hold up one sec". She got me. I took one shot and we moved on. On top of everything else I left my favorite point and shoot camera at home that night and purchased a disposable one at a deli on a whim. I had a feeling I was going to miss something good if I didn't resort to mildly desperate measures. It's a good thing nothing ever closes and that well dressed models like to hang.
Shot with a 35mm disposible point and shoot