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

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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.

Grow Facing The Light

Grow Facing The Light

I shoot towards the light. I do it very often. Usually it comes out exactly how you would think. Washed out and indecipherable.
Maybe a handful of times in my whole photographic life I’ve discovered something beyond what is in plain view. We simply can’t see when looking into the light. You would think that would be the same for a digital camera sensor, but sometimes…it sees something else. Something you can’t see with your eyes.

Hot Dogs in Wonderland

Hot Dogs in Wonderland

Columbus Circle, NYC

Yep. It was a huge mushroom in the middle of the sidewalk. Nothing ever phases New Yorkers. That could be a real gigantic mushroom, and people would just glimpse and go on with their business.
Crazy things happen in NYC all the time. Not like the get shot up and have your face eaten off kind of crazy. But more like, Is that guy really taking a dump in between the subway cars kind of crazy. People are disgusted, and then they go on with their business. So a mushroom the size of a hotdog stand is pretty standard. It was an ad for something. Damned if I know what it was, I never bothered looking. Thanks for coming and viewing!

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.

Oasis in Concrete

Oasis in Concrete

Ford Foundation Building, NYC.

At first he was looking up. For longer than a moment, he marveled above at the unnatural abundance of nature in a city building. I stand watching him from outside on a cold sidewalk. He hangs his head slowly in despair. I thought what sorrow this man must be feeling, to hang his head in the middle of an oasis.

Old New York

Old New York

I wander sometimes. Actually, I wander quite often. I found myself walking north on second avenue somewhere around 50 something street. I walk so often, that sometimes I think I might have been a wolf or some kind of pack animal in a past life. I found myself in front of a hotel on a corner. An old New York carriage sits in their courtyard. I imagine people of high prestige and wealth were carried along in these things by horses. The Maybach of the time, now just a prop and gimmick for a hotel. Even the business man through the window moves faster than this carriage.

Click for bigger!

Fabric of time

Fabric of time

In the fabric district I heard the sound a lot like the rustling of leaves. A sound foreign to cityscapes. It was actually purple, light purple, and white. A beautiful piece of garment inviting you to the shop doors. I looked at it and thought, “I most definitely should process this in color.”
But naturally, I thought about what it would look like in monochrome as well.
I thought I probably wouldn’t know exactly what I was looking at. That it would look really strange and curious.