Sunday, August 25, 2019

Main Street Flushing, 1976-79, Part 1

I'm going through my old negatives from the late '70s, trying to archive and get a handle on them. After 40+ years, I'm discovering some pretty good images that I had ignored previously.

Why Flushing, of all places? Well, I travelled through Flushing nearly every day for four years, while attending Queens College. It was inevitable that I'd practice the skills I learned from Winogrand there.

Here are a few examples. More to come!

Friday, August 23, 2019

So...what's new?

OK, I did it again. I walked away from this blog for a year. 10 lashes with a wet noodle for me.

A quick recap:

I've been taking pictures on the street. I've also been scanning, digitally remastering, and organizing photos I took in NYC in the 1970s. Why? That's something you'll learn more about in the coming weeks and months.

In the meantime, here are a few relatively recent photos. Inspired by the "Winogrand in Color" show at the Brooklyn Museum (highly recommended), I did these in color. Watcha think?

Wednesday, August 29, 2018

Sunday, August 5, 2018

Recent Photos: New York, Summer 2018

Taking a break from promoting my Winogrand class photos from 42 years ago to bring you some recent photos taken within the past month.

Monday, July 30, 2018

Letting go of my Leica M3

After nearly 40 years of service, I'm shipping out my Leica M3, a great film camera that's now old and broken, to a camera repair service, where it will be either used for parts or repaired and sold to a new owner.

I scraped together the money and bought the camera, used, from Ken Hansen in 1978 for $325, along with a 50mm Summicron lens. After a year, I switched to a 35mm lens (with the goggles), which I bought from Ken-Mar Camera in Great Neck. I bought a Leica because Garry Winogrand had one, and as I watched him work with it, the camera's advantages for street photography became obvious. It was smaller than an SLR, had a quiet shutter release, and used lenses with focusing tabs, which made it possible to focus "by feel" before bringing the camera up to your eye, which saved valuable fractions of a second when precise timing was essential.

I used the 35mm lens on the M3 from 1980-2000. Then I switched to a 28mm Kobalux Leica-mount lens, a cheap but good-quality Leica knock-off, and used that until earlier this year, when the shutter jammed. I covered my camera's silver body with black gaffer to make it less noticeable. I took hundreds of thousands of photos with it over the years. In the last 10 years I'd use the camera only occasionally, preferring digital. Three years ago, when I bought my Leica M Typ 240 digital rangefinder, the M3 went into semi-retirement.

It was time. I put it on eBay last Thursday, and sold it within 24 hours.

So, today I'm going to pack up the camera and bring it to the UPS store to ship to Canton, Mass, where its new owner awaits. I usually don't get emotional over a piece of equipment, but this might be an exception. This camera was my third eye and the tool I used for my personal work for most of my adult life.

They say Leicas are expensive cameras—which they are—but they're built to last and tend to retain their value. In fact, amortizing the purchase price over 40 years, I'd say that at $8.12 per year, it was my best photographic bargain ever. The icing on the cake? I sold it for $400—a $75 profit!

Monday, July 23, 2018

Revisiting the Winogrand Workshop, Part VI: The last batch...or is it?

Well, I've scanned, spotted and otherwise prepped the final three rolls that I shot in 1976 at the Master Workshop with Garry Winogrand, two weeks that helped me define myself as a photographer. It's been an amazing journey, revisiting photos, some of which I remembered (since I still have the work prints floating around) others of which were new revelations.

So, here's the last batch.  One thing I noticed? I kept getting closer, apparently more comfortable working the crowds.

But wait--there's more! Sneak peak at the bottom of the pix :-)

But wait...there's more!

Coming soon: 

Winogrand in New York, 1976: Photographs by Mason Resnick
20 never-before-seen photographs of Garry Winogrand at work on the streets of Lower Manhattan.

As we walked out of the building, [Winogrand] wrapped the Leica's leather strap around his hand, checked the light, quickly adjusted the shutter speed and f/stop. He looked ready to pounce. We stepped outside and he was on." 

Wednesday, July 18, 2018

Revisiting the Winogrand Workshop, Part V: More good stuff


A gorgeous young lady looking and smiling right at me—a shy 19-year-old learning to interact with the world through the medium of photography. I was seduced, not just by her, but the crazy approach to photography that I was absorbing like a sponge during that two week August workshop at 80 Nassau Street in Manhattan. The lighting was perfect: Hazy skies, 1/250 at f/8 on Tri-X.

And the icing on the cake, in the background, my teacher, Garry Winogrand (you can see him behind the woman on the left) is watching me approvingly. Actually, he came up to me after I took this shot and said "you're getting it!"

This is the photo, which I've posted elsewhere, that encouraged me to keep going and pursue street photography, no matter what else was happening.

Here are a few more photos I've rediscovered in recent days...three more rolls to go!