The NYC Women’s March of 2017 was one of the most powerful, inspirational, and emotional events I’ve ever been a part of. I was one in a crowd of about 300,000 women, men, and children, which was only a small fraction of the millions simultaneously marching around the world. From young children holding powerful signs to grown women wearing hand-made uterus hats, this march was unlike anything I’ve ever seen before. People were angry, but amongst all the marching and yelling, it was very peaceful, and even more prideful. History was made, voices were unapologetically heard, and I was lucky enough to capture some moments. This weekend was so mentally and emotionally taxing that I had to turn my phone off for a couple of days to decompress (I’m an introvert). Here are some of the photos.
Sen. Chuck Schumer in the trenches.
I can confidently say that there is no place on Earth like New Orleans, Louisiana. From the minute I got off the plane, there was something different about the air. That’s when I realized that we basically just landed in a swamp. The city was humid, muggy, muddy, and so foggy that we didn’t even know the plane had reached the ground until we heard the thud. But besides that, there was something else. It was the music, and the scent of the food and alcohol that filled the air of “The City That Care Forgot.” During my stay down south, I ate Po’ boys and fried chicken, drank the infamous New Orleans Hand Grenade cocktail (among several other drinks), visited some alligators in the bayous, jammed to some street music, and talked to a lot of strangers (who are some of the nicest people in this universe). I also spent far too much money, but ultimately, every penny was worth it. Here are some pictures from my journey to New Orleans, although these images don’t quite do this place justice. This is an affordable, must-visit destination for all travel/adventure/alcohol enthusiasts at City Tech.
The French Quarter.
The street music was probably my favorite thing about this city.
A glimpse of the night life on Bourbon Street.
An utterly horrifying tree that almost ate us during a swamp tour.
Fun fact: Alligators really love marshmallows. (Don’t wear white)
If you know me then there’s a good chance you’re well aware about my obsession with science fiction. It’s the ultimate combination of imagination and wild scientific theories, which can lead to amazing stories and fascinating concepts. One concept that particularly blows my mind is the idea of time travel. To me, going to The Metropolitan Museum of Art is a travel through time. The museum is the time machine, and my legs are the tools which will take me as far back into history as my energy lets me. Walking through halls filled with Roman sculptures and Egyptian coffins, standing in rooms filled with weapons held by ancient military, and appreciating the strokes of paint made on canvases from 300 years ago is an experience like no other.
It’s just about the end of 2016. I’m always filled with joy during this time of the year, but simultaneously I’m a little bummed out. It’s great that a semester of hard work is finally over, the holiday season is in full effect, and although the weather is harsh, there’s a festive, happy feeling flowing through the air. It’s impossible not to smile during December in New York City. What makes me sad is that there’s so much I want to do, and time seems to be quickly slipping away from me the older I get. The end of the year is a constant reminder that we’re one year closer to getting gray, but most importantly it’s also a reminder that we’ve been blessed with living another year. Unfortunately life itself is the thing we take for granted the most. For a lot of people, 2016 was a tough year. But even with all its flaws, 2016 has personally and professionally been one of the most successful, productive years in my life. Not only have I been blessed with another year of living, but several doors of opportunity knocked, and I kicked them all open.
One of the biggest opportunities I got this year was simply being able to travel. I was granted with the determination to visit places locally around the city, and then I was granted with the time and money to leave the mainland for a couple of days for the first time. In this post, where I went and what I did isn’t important, it’s the act of going that’s important. As a human being, I think it’s essential that as long as we live and have the drive, it’s our job to explore the world surrounding us. There are so many places to go, people to meet, things to eat, and facts to learn. The fact that you are living, consciously able to read and understand what I’m saying to you right now in this exact moment in time is a gift. I think we should experience as much as we possibly can in what little time we have. That doesn’t mean you need a plane ticket, a car, a bike, or even legs for that matter. All you need is a brain and a heart. And maybe a cell phone in case you get lost. You could go with your loved ones, with your friend(s), or alone. You could go to a restaurant in town that you’ve never been to, or you could go to a museum that’s halfway around the world. As long as you have the opportunity, I challenge you to go somewhere.
Beacon, New York is one of my favorite places in the country. It’s a little town that quietly lives within the array of mountains that surround the Hudson River. It’s filled with nice artistic pieces, good-tasting food and great people. The Dia: Beacon art museum is a gallery that is home to some of the best contemporary art that dates back to the 1960s and 1970s. None of the art here is traditional, they all physically use space and light as subjects of creativity. The architecture of the building and lighting of the rooms are just as important as the artworks themselves, it’s what makes the work unique. For any readers who want to take a trip to Beacon and visit this museum, just take the Metro-North train from Grand Central Terminal up to Beacon, New York. It’s an hour and a half train ride. A round-trip ticket is just over $30, a Dia ticket is $15 ($12 for students), and the experience is priceless.
A street view from Beacon, NY.
“The Equal Area Series” by Walter De Maria
The two light sculptures are untitled works from an artist named Dan Flavin.
The Hudson River Valley is home to some of the most beautiful scenery that New York has to offer, especially during the fall season. Before I came to City Tech, I used to go to college in Upstate New York. Never taking a moment for granted, I always appreciated my time there. Being in a rural town amongst the mountains was a nice change from being in an urban city amongst giant skyscrapers. The air, colors, mountains, flora, and atmosphere are all quite the opposite of everything we see down in the city. It’s a beautiful area, but personally it’s the friendships and memories that call for my occasional return to the Hudson River Valley. Here’s what I had the pleasure of seeing during my last trip.
Every year has its highs and lows, but 2016 has been one of the roughest years in recent memory. On a less serious note, terrible movies and video games have been released. More seriously though, we’ve grieved the deaths of legendary artists who’ve inspired generations of current and future artists. We’ve grieved the deaths of seemingly innocent black men, women and children who were gunned down on the street by police. And we laughed at, and now grieve the whole debacle that was the 2016 Presidential Election Race.
From the candidates, to the debates, to the scandals, the race was an utter mess, and as a result our country is constant worry about what the future holds. “What will become of America when Trump is officially sworn in as president?” seems to be the most asked question. I recently went to a Trump Protest, not as a participant, just as a photographer. The feeling of racial, political and social divide was quite disheartening. The sight of anger among protesters, lack of empathy amongst Trump supporters and apathy from the suits within the Trump Tower was disappointing to say the least.
There were several groups of young teens at the protest, no older than 14. They said to a nearby reporter “we’re not old enough to vote, so we feel that protesting is the only way our voices can be heard.”
But after having a 2 hour discussion with a Clinton supporter, a Trump supporter, and a man with no real allegiances, I realized that not all hope is lost. Although vastly different ideologies, beliefs and viewpoints were discussed, the fact that we could all come together and just talk to each other is a feat in itself. Right now, our country desperately needs more communication, empathy, and respect.
This is India Kotis, she’s one of people I had a 2 hour discussion with during the protest. One of her major concerns is the skepticism about climate change.
The 46th New York City Marathon was one of the most emotional, passionate, and inspirational events I’ve ever experienced. Three weeks ago, I was just one single person in a sea of thousands of spectators, and in those moments I truly felt that we were all one big family. Peace, love, unity and sportsmanship were all being thoroughly stirred in the melting pot known as New York City on November 6th, 2016. Thousands of men and women from all over the world ran the grueling 26.2 mile marathon through all five boroughs, trying to make their cities, families, and most importantly themselves proud. While observing the runners, I immediately felt the intensity and the motivation to finish the run just by the determined expressions on their faces. As the marathon runners inched closer towards the finish line, breathing the harsh cold air, dripping their blood, sweat and tears, and pouring their hearts out onto the course, I captured some of these candid moments.
The Freedom Tunnel is an Amtrak route that actively runs through the streets of Uptown Manhattan underneath the famous Riverside Park. But it’s more than just your average railroad line, those tunnels are teeming with history and stories which will never be fully understood. A safe haven for the homeless and a sanctuary for graffiti artists, The Freedom Tunnel partially obtained it’s name from an artist named Chris “Freedom” Pape in the 1980s. When the train’s service temporarily came to a stop in the tunnel, he filled those walls with urban paintings, and even created remixes of classical works of art.
The tunnel also got its name because decades ago, hundreds of homeless people-now infamously known as “The Mole People”- used to have an underground society within these walls. They lived carefree, rent free, and rule free away from society in their hand-built shantytowns. Unfortunately, most of them were eventually evicted since Amtrak purchased and now utilizes this track. However, that doesn’t stop urban explorers (like me) and graffiti artists who want to make their mark or pay their respects to the work of Freedom. There are even still some homeless people living there as you read this. Because Amtrak has recently been trying to restore the tunnels’ original look, a lot of the most famous works by Freedom and other notable artists have since been destroyed. But within the darkness, underneath the rocks, ruin and rubble, there is still a lot of life, and tons of great artwork to be seen.
A view of the entrance to the tunnel.
Looking outside from within.
Tools of the trade.
A deeper look into the tunnel.
A light opening from Riverside Park (while I took the picture here, I actually overheard a group of people trying to figure out how to get into the tunnel)
These openings are sporadic the deeper you venture into the tunnel. I stopped here because it was too terrifying to go any further.
Greetings! My name is Evans Alexandre, I’m a twenty-two year old senior at City Tech majoring in Communication Design. I was born and raised in the vast lands of Queens, New York, and over time, I’ve developed a fiery passion for photography, film, art, and production, and a mild obsession with hip-hop instrumentals and anything that has to do with science fiction. My short term goals are to eventually work at a media/production company to help make videos, movies and TV, and in the long term I want to make a TV show and publish a novel and photography book. The world is a massive place, and since I’m an explorer at heart, this year at The Buzz
I’ll be photoblogging about the various places, events, and hidden gems that New York and its neighboring states have to offer.
My desired blog theme is to share my travels and exploration around New York, Philly and Maryland through photography. I love going to places to experience and learn new things, and my goal is for the readers of this blog to learn through my experiences. I want to give readers a chance to live vicariously through an adventurer. Everything and everyone has a story, and through photography, it is my hope that you learn something new or expand on knowledge you already have.