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Night Falls on the City: The View from the Brooklyn Bridge

During those liminal moments after the sun sets but before the night has muted the clarity of day, the landscape veers off into abstraction. It's the golden hour, a mystical time favored by visual artists. Familiar sights gradually lose detail, giving way to sheer fundamental shapes, silhouettes, colors, hues, and qualities of luminosity. To describe the sunset you have to think like a painter. For many in New York, this hallowed time is best worshipped under the neo-Gothic arches of the Brooklyn Bridge, the city's-well-known icon that links Brooklyn with Manhattan. Below, silver currents of the East River reflect the day's last light. Above, birds and helicopters streak across an increasingly electric sky. On some evenings, the sunset flames out in a blazing eruption of yellow and plum and crimson glory. The Statue of Liberty makes a dramatic statement silhouetted against the flaming sky. As soon as the colors fade and darkness falls, however, the Manhattan skyline, waiting patiently, begins to start the night show. Church is over. Cue the jazz. The night has other plans for you.



Images from Saturday, November 21, 2009 between 4:20 p.m. and 5:15 p.m. To see the images fullscreen (recommended), click the arrows at bottom right inside the photo frame..

Comments

Anonymous said…
The photos do not give a jot of an idea as to what it is like to be on the Brooklyn Bridge. They are narrowly focused shots of this and that; too much localizing; images of the stone uprights are at a peculiar angle. Sunsets are always pretty, but there is too much focusing in on the people without any broader context. Nice folks - if I didn't know beforehand, I'd say: "Where are they?"

Signed: 33-year resident of Brooklyn Heights.
Teri Tynes said…
Hey Anonymous-
Thanks for taking the time to critique the images. My goal, however, was to write a small paragraph about the qualities of twilight, not to portray the context of the bridge. It was designed more as a photo art essay. Sorry you didn't like the pictures.
Tom B said…
Nice sharp crisp pictures. Great sillouhettes. We have walked the bridge. Another free enjoyment for us tourist in NYC. We were amazed at how crowded it was and that people would turn around half way across. We went all the way and took the subway back to Manhattan. Another Walking Off the Big Apple sordie. Thanks Teri.

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