Monthly Archives: February 2008

Viennese Skate Rat



Thurs 02.21.08 – Black hoodie, check. Non-descript schleppy clothes, check. Wood deck with fashionably small wheels, check. Practicing badly on historic architecture, check. Skate rats, same the world over.
Vienna, call Etnies or Vans to have them help you set up a grommet approved skate park. Or empty a pool, make ’em sign a wavier, let ’em at it, make local dentists happy with increased business, and save your landmarks.
Photo by Ms. Jen with a Nokia N82.

Urbanista Diaries: Why Ms. Jen is Taking the Photos She is Taking in India

[note: This post was written on Feb. 18th in Goa, India, but could not be published until later due to lack of wifi or internet connection.]
“Something old, something new, something borrowed, something blue.”
India as the bride. From all of the billboards and other street advertising, India is big on weddings. Thus, I decided to pull the above proverb from the Euro-American tradition and use it as a major theme for the photos I would be taking / am taking with the Nokia N82 for the Urbanista Diaries trip to India.
It is fitting as South India, where I am visiting, is in a period of economic growth and cultural change. On every corner there is something old, something new, something colorful, and who knows… possibly something borrowed.
As I take photos of the India that I am photo walking and driving through, I am most intrigued and captured by the contrasts in architecture, color, typography / signage, and people in the cityscapes / landscapes, as well as the street dogs that are in all of the cities. The color and geometry of buildings in contrast to each other, the environment and the bustle of city life has been particularly intriguing.
In Chennai there was quite a bit of great art deco architecture, Bangalore is sprouting glass medium to highrises, Kerala is a mishmash of old dutch colonial and new sky scraping apartment buidlings, and Goa is a fascinating mix of old colonial Portugese with 1940s art deco to 1970s socialist brutalisme concrete block buildings.
India is the place to be if you are a graphic designer in love with type. The range of signage and advertising from hand painted to the highly sophisticated is amazing. And then the placement of said signs in their environmental milieu can be extraordinary.
I have not taken a lot of photos of people, unless I have their permission or if they are within the context of the cityscape / landscape. I hope that when I am in Mumbai there will be more opportunity to take appropriate people photos, esp. of street fashion. Today I saw a Goan couple walking down the street, she in cuffed jeans and he with a moderate quiff. Hmmm…
On top of what I am choosing to take photos of, I have after the Chennai Photo walk and viewing all 150 of those photos in the context of the Flash interface on the Urbanista Diaries site, I realized that they functioned almost as stop motion animation when the Urbanista slide show was fully loaded and playing smoothly with the big photos and the thumbnails. Since last Sunday’s photo walk, I have been purposefully shooting a lot of photos, not deleting, and shooting multiples of a subject as I walk or drive past as to maximize the cinematic effect of the Urbanista flash slide show.
There you have it: Ms. Jen’s photo theory thoughts on shooting mobile photos in India. For the moment at least.