Farewell 2013

Farewell 2013

Let us say adieu to 2013 and welcome in the new year.
2013 left us in a hurry like a subway train, never to look back. In this upcoming year I want to focus on myself. I want to focus on my photography and be an adventurer. I want to travel. I want to put myself and the camera in new places we’ve never been. I want to share my passion with everyone, even if they don’t care to listen. This is who I am. I will not deny myself who I am and neither should anyone else. Let’s work on being honest with ourselves and light the way with our own torch of passion. Let’s be strong in the face of darkness, even when our torch is seemingly at its last embers. Rekindle the fire and keep burning.

I’ve made some new social networking accounts today to keep the fire going. Please visit and follow me.

https://twitter.com/UGstreet
http://ugstreet.tumblr.com/

I’ve also made some adjustments on my official page:
http://www.ugstreets.com

Thank you all for an amazing year full of wonder, fear, education, Love, inspiration, dreams, longing, and hope.

-Yuji

Power Color

Power Color

WTF is going on here?!
Is his shirt really THAT pink?
I think this guy is taking his business power colors a little too seriously.
It’s actually a building across the street that has purple tints on it, reflecting pink light back on to the pink man.The photo isn’t manipulated with fake pink color.

Scream?

Scream?

I know it’s a little late for Halloween but I thought I’d post this sooner than later.
I was waiting to cross the street and these kids in scream masks were on the other side. Halloween in NYC is pretty amazing. Especially for a photographers. Usually when people are wearing costumes, they don’t mind you taking a photo of them. Sometimes, they might even pose for you. A second or two before this moment, they were in the middle of the street facing each other in a circle. They started to tilt their heads left and right, raising their hands in a ‘Why?’ gesture (like in the photo). I still have no idea what they were doing.

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Whirling Doves

Whirling Doves

What do you think birds are doing when they circle around in large flocks like this?
There are many theories I read on the net. They circle around for prey or to avoid being prey. They are navigating before leaving. It’s a mating ritual, etc. To be completely honest with you, I think they’re just flying around. Having fun with the winds. Partying, enjoying life. The immensely large buildings like the U.N. (shown here) in cities create strange wind patterns. And it’s always in big cities that I see pigeons like these flying in circles. Quick trivia here: Pigeons are actually called Rock Doves because they nest along the coastal cliffs in the rocks. Also, baby pigeons are called squabs.
Click for a bigger image!

Haze

Haze

I was walking towards Grand Central Station. It’s somewhere I go everyday. The light cut into the street through an avenue and created this haze effect. Perhaps it’s the pollution or maybe it’s from all the reflected and refracted light from the buildings. I stood there just staring at it for a while. Every person walking through becomes ethereal.

in 3’s

in 3's

The more I look at this photo, the more I find it interesting.
Three birds, three benches, 3:33. He was in quiet meditation despite all the noise.

I believe he holds a secret we all should learn from. The health of your mind. The power of your mind, is very important. More important than you ever thought.

Everyday Magic

Everyday Magic

As long as I can remember, I always had an eye for magical things hidden in everyday life. I would stare and fiddle with plants and trees. Talked to insects in case they understood me. I would watch the snow fall for hours in the cold. Float in the ocean just to feel its waves move me back and forth.
I was a strange kid, I know. ^_^
It’s not very obvious what is magical and what is not. Actually, it’s more of a perception than say “Reality”.
But I have a question for you. What is reality? Is it real because you can hear, smell, feel, or taste something?
Do you not somehow use these senses in your dreams? Are your dreams real? (Not to get all Inception on you.)
I genuinely felt something when I turned towards the sun this day and snapped this photo of normal everyday people. I saw the Shadow consume them and the Sun peeking over the building. It was magical to me. As real as it gets.

Street and Fashion

Street and Fashion

HOLY CRAP that lady almost got hit by a car!

She is hobbling back to the sidewalk on her very “sexy” heels that make it clearly dangerous to walk in. I’m looking through the viewfinder already as she tries to cross the street AGAIN despite the oncoming traffic. She just happens to look very stylish in a frame. In reality she walked like her ankles were going to shatter at any moment.

I don’t particularly have a love for fashion. I enjoy the aesthetics of it. I went to see the Alexander Mcqueen exhibit and was truly inspired by the immense creativity of it all. In NYC, high fashion is a given. It’s everywhere. Even I cringe when I see Uggs boots on anyone. And I’m not even into fashion that much! It’s just so much of it, that I’m spoiled. Dare I say, that I might even LIKE it???
Well, I think I like anything that makes my eyes and heart happy. Perhaps a Fashion division of UG Street might develop? I might need some help with that. What do you know about Fashion? hmm?

Click the image for a bigger version of the same image, ok thanks.

Prelude

Prelude

Recently my Ipod a friend gave me broke and I’ve been without portable music for a bit now. Actually, I don’t mind it so much. It’s hard to be in tune with your surroundings when you are in your own musical moment.

I can hear a cello echoing through the underground hallway. It’s humming the prelude to the first cello suite by Bach. It’s a classic piece that most will be able to recognize. The sound is staggered by the constant bustling of people as I approach, until this man finally reveals himself. He is completely in the notes. He is immersed in it. His eyes are closed and he becomes the classic piece. It’s easy to photograph someone who is in the moment. They are not concerned with the outside. They are in tune within.
I dropped a dollar in his hat. He doesn’t even notice. He just plays on over the loud man nearby preaching about Jesus.
This hallway is the underground connection between time square and port authority on 40th st. Some locals and commuters call this the Jesus Walk. By the time you get to either side, you might be holding a pamphlet about the watchtower. You were probably yelled at by a loud man with a bible about your sins. Or, if you’re lucky you might have even stopped to have your stress level checked by scientologists. Yes, those Test Your Stress Level tables are run by scientologists. I commute through this walk just about everyday. It’s a place where you keep on moving. You don’t want to stop or you might get pummeled. Taking shots here is extremely hard if not straight up dangerous. People are moving very fast, and they’re determined as ever. But if you do ever hear Bach as you’re walking through and you absolutely need a shot of the street performer, get out of the way first. Take your shots when you know you’re clear. It’s nearly impossible to get a good shot when you’re being shoved around.

I learned this the hard way and pissed off some commuters before I took this shot. ^_^
Totally worth it, though.

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