Browse by...

NYC Grid is a photo blog dedicated to exploring New York block-by-block and corner-by-corner. Each post covers a new street or feature with a focus on the mundane and ephemeral.


« 40th St Between Park Ave and Madison Ave | Main | 3rd St Between 6th Ave and MacDougal St »

24,000 Photos Later, A Break

A collection of throw-away images I would take of the sidewalk to visually differentiate all the streets I would shoot at one time.

Over the previous 24 months I spent nearly every weekend walking around New York, camera in-hand, with the intention of documenting parts of the city I had never been to. The result has been this daily photo project; a project which has taken over my life in some manner nearly everyday since then.  Though many people assume I was out to walk the entire grid, or to shoot photos of every street, I never had that endgame in mind. No, it was far simpler: I just never wanted to move away from New York and feel like I wasted my time here. I also wanted to rid myself of the frustration of hearing about all these great neighborhoods and sights, though never taking the initiative to see them. And finally I wanted to share these experiences through photos. I've always loved the small things that people either don't see or don't even bother to notice. The ephemeral elements of everyday life which change so subtly over the decades, so that by the time we feel nostalgic for them, they've already been lost. So those were my goals.

In these two years I have managed to shoot over 24,000 photos of 515 blocks over the course of 90 weekends. All impressive numbers, if I do say so myself. But with thousands of blocks in Manhattan alone, it was obvious I was never going to achieve that mythical goal of photographing every street. I'm just one person, with one camera, traveling on-foot. It was just never going to happen. Even today, looking at my map of documented streets, it's amazing I've made it this far, but looking closer you can see how much more there is to do.

So it's with all that in mind that I've decided to stop posting new blocks on a daily basis.

NYC Grid will not be going away. But with the cold weather and shorter days upon us, I'd like to take the 10-or-so hours per week that I dedicate to this site and refocus them on other projects. The blog is not dead; far from it. I'll be keeping these photos and posts online, and may still contribute new ones from time to time. But the self-imposed deadlines related to posting a new block every weekday have become prohibitive.

I'd like to thank every person that ever visited the site. It's incredibly humbling to have people be even remotely interested in something you're passionate about. The thrill that, every week, thousands of people were reading my clumsily-written thoughts and looking at my hastily-shot photos has never worn off. The support and kind words I've received from countless individuals from all over the city, country and world are invaluable to me. I treasure every comment, every email and every reader. If you've been a daily visitor I encourage you to subscribe to the NYC Grid and NYC Grid Snippets RSS feeds to stay current with any sporadic updates I may post.

Previously: 260 Blocks Later (1 year anniversary)

PrintView Printer Friendly Version

Reader Comments (3)

Your blog is terrific. I hope you never feel the need to apologize or explain yourself for managing your blog as you wish. You have a life and everyone who enjoys your blog (hopefully) realizes that. I've only checked in on your blog about a dozen times so I for one will be going to your archives to see what I've missed and even then, I know I'll barely scratch the surface. I live in the Lower East Side and really get a kick out of seeing the blocks you've posted which are near my apartment building. Have a great holiday season!

November 28, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterHeather

Enjoyed your throw away pictures...the little bit of toe in almost each one was quirky and fun. Look forward to any blocks you do decide to post. I would imagine it would be because you found something of particular interest when you do. Enjoy your weekends...keep exploring!

November 30, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterJanis

thank you for all the joy you have given to other's by the photo's you have put up for us to see. I continue to visit and enjoy all there is to see that you have explored and shared . Ella

January 7, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterElla

PostPost a New Comment

Enter your information below to add a new comment.
Author Email (optional):
Author URL (optional):
Some HTML allowed: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <code> <em> <i> <strike> <strong>