I spend a lot of time shooting or walking on the streets of New York. You see every type of camera imaginable here, from the latest and greatest DSLRs to old Rollei’s and film cameras. If you hang around B&H long enough, you’ll probably see Louis Mendes with his old Speed Graphic. But I have never, ever seen anyone shooting with what Justin Borucki is using. This guy might have the most unique camera setup in New York.
Justin Borucki has taken the concept of capturing fast-disappearing “old New York”, but added a unique twist. Instead of simply capturing store fronts, or areas of the city that are under dramatic and rapid change from gentrification, rezoning or condo developments, he’s gone one step further.
Justin has been shooting wet plate collodion photographs in areas of the city that remind him of what it used to look like when he was a kid, with the aim of capturing them before they change forever. Not only does the process yield beautiful imagery, but his work transforms modern day New York into something that looks like it was shot a century ago.
You could pass this off as some kind of insane hipster folly, but Justin admits it took at least 6 months of work before he began to get images that were of any real substance. He’s been shooting like this for over a year now and working that hard and lugging around this heavy set up says a lot about his determination and committment to the projeect. If you watch the video, you can see just how sincere he is about what he is doing.
Justin has genuinely captured some wonderful imagery here. I remember how different he city looked when I first visited only 16 years ago compared to today. The change in the last few years alone has been startling. If nothing else, this is at least helping preserve a wonderful photographic legacy of what this amazing city used to look like before it’s all gone.
Via [American Photo Mag]
Special Thanks/All Images: Justin Borucki