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Fire Island evening

Fire Island, an island off the coast of New York, is a treasure. Accessible by ferry boat, the island is made up of a couple of dozen different and distinct communities, each with its own personality. Saltaire, where these photographs were taken, is criss-crossed with wooden boardwalks and the main mode of tranportation is a rusty bike.

The sunset is beautiful over the Great South Bay. The departing ferry and the bobbing swim dock are silhouetted against the deep blue sky as the moon rises over the reeds.

All photographs ©Phil Cantor 2015


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Thinking Botanically

The New York Botanical Garden, in the Fordham area of the Bronx, is the most beautiful garden I have ever visited. It’s 250 acres of formal gardens, glasshouses and virgin forest. They have a fascinating exhibit on view for Summer 2015. They have put together plants and flowers that famed Mexican artist Frida Kahlo had surrounding her home, Casa Azul, in Coyoacan, Mexico City.

The glasshouse overflowed with lush blooming flowers and some of the strangest plants I’ve ever seen. Photographs were everywhere. I loved the textures, shapes, colors, and the play of light. I took a lot of flower portraits, as well as the re-creation of Kahlo’s house and worktable.





All photographs ©Phil Cantor 2015


The Americans at the Museum

The article on Robert Frank in the July 5, 2015 New York Times Magazine continues to inspire me. He is an iconoclast who traveled the length and breadth of America around 1950 documenting the American experience. His book, The Americans, reverberates still with its images of racism, poverty and poetry.

I love street photography. My favorite photographers of this genre are Josef Koudelka, Henri Cartier-Bresson and Elliott Erwitt. In homage to Erwitt, who made hilarious and clever photographs in museums, I visited the new Whitney Museum in Manhattan over the weekend.

The light in the museum is fantastic, flooding in from 25 foot tall windows. And, best of all, they allow photographs to be taken! I spent a couple of hours playing with the shapes and silhouettes and the interplay between humans and art.


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The Americans

The New York Times Magazine had a wonderful profile of photographer Robert Frank. Frank, 90, came to the US from Switzerland in the late 1940s. He won a Guggenheim Fellowship and he embarked on a 10,000 mile trip around America.

The product of this tour was his book called The Americans. This seminal work inspired 3 generations of photographers to get out in the street and make photographs that tell a story.

One of his great subject matter was parades. Inspired by the article, I went out to downtown Montclair, NJ on the Fourth of July to capture the moments of preparation just before the start of the town’s famous parade. I set my camera to photograph in black & white, and followed in Frank’s footsteps.1-MontclairJuly 4 Parade_resize

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