A ‘Photographic Census’ Captures New York’s Characters – Arts & Lifestyle – The Atlantic Cities
Some amazing captures by Brandon Stanton (see the video). So much diversity, yet the people seem somehow rooted in and belonging to NYC: they’re unified as New Yorkers, even though they’re often so different. It struck me how often the sitters blended into the background the were posing in front of, as though ingested by the place, literally incorporated, and belonging to it entirely.
Stanton, who has no formal training in photography, told me that the real barrier to taking street portraits is the very normal human fear of rejection. “Especially when you start, a lot of people are going to say no,” he says. At first, the rejections sting. But he says that after all the thousands of interactions he’s had, he doesn’t really register them any more.
Supporting Local Business with the Muscle of a ‘Cash Mob’ – Jobs & Economy – The Atlantic Cities
Do they have a lasting impact? That is the question…
Which raises the question: Are cash mobs anything more than a well-meaning gesture that generates nice media coverage? (It seemed like half the people at By Brooklyn had notebooks and cameras.)
For By Brooklyn’s owner, Gaia DiLoreto, the answer is yes. “It was very uplifting,” says DiLoreto, a self-described “recovering finance robot” who left corporate life at the height of the economic crisis to start her own business. “It’s an incredible affirmation of what I’m doing, that so many people believe in what I believe in.”
DiLoreto estimated that the cash mob just about doubled the business she would have gotten on a typical Saturday. More importantly, “people walked into the store who have never been in my store before.”
For her, the cash mob is emblematic of a new type of business model that she sees taking root everywhere around her. Starting something new in this economy has been tough, but DiLoreto says the support from like-minded people has been “overwhelming.” Ideas like “locavesting” may not conform to traditional economic thinking, but that doesn’t bother her. “It’s happening,” she says. “Whether it works out on economists’ worksheets or not. I see it everywhere.” If she’s right, maybe you’ll see the effects on a neighborhood near you.
Greening an Entire Block Instead of Just One Building – Jobs & Economy – The Atlantic Cities
This sounds like a great idea, except (as a commenter already points out) the bit about replacing windows. No, don’t do it, especially not with vinyl window garbage!
Living City Block’s basic concept is simple. Small buildings rarely have the resources to do a serious retrofit. For most of them, the idea is cost-prohibitive. But what if you combined a small building with 10 more like it? If all of those building owners got together to order high-efficiency water heaters in bulk, or to collectively replace one-thousand windows, could they achieve the kind of economies of scale that the Empire State Building gets?
This sounds feasible, and Riley is sure the idea will work. But he’s talking about creating a kind of building owners’ association that has never been modeled before, one in which neighbors who otherwise have very little in common might make common decisions about pooling their trash pick-up, paying their utility bills, and renovating their properties.