Sunday, September 20, 2009

The High Line

This afternoon, at the end of a lovely portrait session starring a charming 2-year-old, I found myself atop New York City's High Line, and just had to take the opportunity for a stroll.

It was a perfect late summer day in New York - cloudless sky, warm air, cool breeze - and the sun was shining all over the place, literally. For those of you not familiar, NYC's High Line is old railroad bridges [turned urban park-space] that wind over, under, and through the buildings of Manhattan's west side.

It is located near the Hudson River, so as the sun went westward this afternoon, the nearby buildings reflected bright, beautiful light in all kinds of directions off the windows of the surrounding buildings. The result was something like movie set lighting, only more abstract.

I was fascinated with the way the light was playing into the landscape - I learned that much of the foliage was salvaged from the real growth that occurred on top of the once-used elevated train tracks, that had been left to the elements for decades, until the High Line's recent renovation. While there was something slightly artificial about the way it was bouncing around due to all of the reflective surfaces, it was still natural light, in that its source was the sun. It gave the whole scene a rather magical feel.

A tangential highlight to my excursion was running into a few friends as I tried to make my way out of the park - a ran into a friend of mine, and then a couple I'm friends with - and had one of "those" New York moments. My mom never used to believe me that in a city of eight million people you could, very often, run into people you know. Well, this one's for you, Mom: this afternoon, I ran into three people I know in five minutes' time, amidst wispy and flowering plants and heavenly light, hovering over West 18th Street.

So, the High Line is a truly magical place.

1 comment:

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