I have been following Tina’s work for a while now, and feel I have got to know her style. Well what I think her style is. Tina is a Street Photographer that hails from The Big Apple, NYC in the US of A. This is so evident in her work. It makes it gritty, very different to what I do, as Tina shoots everyday life, groups, and situations, which are totally different in New York, and that feeling comes over in her shots.
Check out the photos and see what you think. I know you will like them as I do.
All the photos in this post were taken by Tina and are copyrighted to her. © Tina Leggio
I always say, people don’t look up. That is also true of photographers. I am always berating myself for it. When you do look up this is the result you can get. The guy is in a dream. Stroking his hair whilst looking onto nothing. Maybe he is sat on the windowsill to have a smoke because he’s not allowed to smoke indoors. Maybe he’s sitting there awaiting his lover. You just don’t know. You see by the paintwork that the property isn’t the most well maintained. I just find myself looking at this and stories going through my head.
I first saw noticed this shot when I visited Tina’s blog for the first time. I thought it was so funny. A little boy wanting to be like his Dad, a mini mirror image. Then reading I realised it was a girl. I had been thinking how young boys have lots of film and TV hero’s but their biggest, and the way it should be is their Dad. That is why they look up to them. Then they reach teenage years and have to grow, and feel they have to stand up for themselves, and that relationship changes. When I realised it was a girl, I thought that they still look at their Dad as a hero, but then when teenage years arrive they realise their feminine ways and that is when they change. I know these are generalisations, but this is what this image stirred. What also came into my head was is the father on the wrong side of the law, will the child grow up following in their fathers footsteps, as that is all they know. Once again a lovely story being put into my head by an excellent image.
Hey a girl on her phone. It is amazing how many photographers you see taking shots of people on their phones. It would have been great in the Eighties when they were first around and hardly anybody had them. Now though there has to be something else rather than taking the easy way out as they are not looking. What stands out here and the reason Tina taking the shot is the girls stand out bumpers with the stars on them. For me it is also that, but more so is the girl behind on her phone. You wonder if there is a row of them but you can’t see due to the front of the building. It’s like flagpoles on the front of the building, or rows of dustbins.
This shot stands out in Tina’s work. She is a woman, but admits herself she isn’t into all the lovey dovey shots that some people do. What I like is that Tina has captured the feelings, especially the girls towards the man. The way her head is resting on his chest, feeling his warmth and protection, breathing in his aroma, and savouring the moment. I bet a lot of women would know that feeling of being with their man!
This shot hasn’t made it onto Tina’s Photostream on Flickr as yet. I saw it on her blog a week ago. I think it is excellent and will just put here what I commented on her post about it.
“I know what appeals in the last shot, maybe even the same as you. This is my favourite shot of the post. I like it because as you said they are a group that are together, but also separate. You find your eyes moving from one to another to look for any interaction which we have in the bottom right. Added to this is the composition of symmetry if you cut it straight down the middle, and also the pyramid style, where you have 3 in the front and 2 behind, but the 2 behind are between the front and as they are standing whilst the ones in the front are sitting it makes it pleasing to look at. Well that’s what does it for me.” Symmetry!
I know from Tina’s Blog and Photostream that this guy freaked Tina out with his staring, but it is just a great portrait. Spot on focus with a great bokeh. So clean. A lot of photographers would love to be able to get a pose like this that is set up, so to get it candidly is superb.
This shot is not titled “untitled” but just doesn’t have a title. I think it could be called “Beauty with a phone in NYC”. We have the odd bit of graffiti in the UK and if I took a shot like this we might see the odd bit or three, but these walls are covered. I, and I think a lot of people outside the States imaging New York to be like this. Buzzing and covered with graffiti. We see it on the news reports and documentaries. That is why I like this shot as you have such a pretty girl amongst all this grime, like a rose in manure. Excellent.
“Warriors, come out to play” This is how this shot feels to me. I remember seeing that film when it first came out. Everybody wanted to see it. It is about a gang trying to get home with all the other New York gangs out to get them. Anybody who has sen that film will know what I mean. This image depicts that image of New York with the gangs for me, and that is why I love it.
This is another of Tina’s shots that hasn’t made it to her photostream. It is on her blog in her latest post. Once again I have been lucky in my timing. I have been a while deliberating on what shots to include as I will only allow myself to show 10. I had 11 and couldn’t decide and didn’t want to decide which to drop. Then today I read Tina’s latest post “On a Mission”, and was enjoying it as usual, when I saw this shot. so clear in B&W, which is unusual for Tina at the moment, as she is working with colour, and it hit me with the clarity. The guy looks so chilled. Tina confirms that when she says that he looked at her then looked away. I am left wondering though what her shot that she said she missed when the nutter started jumping in front of her, would have been like. I like that she has the back of the nutters shirt. What adds to the shot is the bus passing giving that City Feel. Fantastic.
I was going to change the order of how I lay out the photos for this feature on Tina’s photography. The reason is this shot. This was one of the first shots I saw of Tina’s and I wanted to place it first for that reason. It was instantly a favourite of mine, and it still is my all time favourite of Tina’s photography, and this is why I had to keep my “Save the best till last” approach. It is an excellent example of Candid Street Shooting. Getting the shot, despite all that is going on around, with people walking past all the time.
The woman looks so cool. The way she is dressed, so confident. Tina’s reply to someone on her Flickr page, “It just makes her look like such a tough, cool chick.” Boy, does it. Most people just look at photos on Flickr at the size they are, and miss so much. I have pointed this out in the past. I looked closely and thought the girl had rings on, then I realised it was tattoos. Go to Flickr open it up to full resolution and you will see that her hands and fingers are tattoo’d and also her body right up to her neck. This is one hardcore, confident chick, as Tina would call her.
Added to this the fact that Tina has caught her watching others really makes this shot. Tina will have to go a long way to beat this for me. But I know she will!
Thank you Tina for allowing me to use your photos on the Blog.