As the Curb Thing gets closer to what I'd call a first draft, I should write down some notes about how it was done:
I began with the upper curb, because I wanted to have a straight line
to work with, and it was done with the 35mm lens. The center
street was mostly done on 82nd street, also with the 35mm lens.
As I moved towards the sidewalk and the upper wall, I began using the
24mm. One idea I had from the beginning was that there would be
several angles of view in the same photograph. That the upper
curb would be shot, slightly at an angle so that I could move up the
wall if I wanted to. The lower curb and the street would be shot
at 90 degrees. In other words, there would be a perspective shift
from bottom to top, but nothing drastic. And that idea didn't
really change as I went along.
One of the things that did change, was that I began to walk around
looking for interesting items to put into the picture. A lot of
these are too small to make out in the web image, but I found a purple
afro comb, and there is a great dunkin doughnut cup in the puddle on
the bottom, and a whole mess of rain-melted newspaper on the top which
was taken from some other street. These are like
those carved radishes you see at a banquet table.
One other thing to note: when I began, I was shooting RAW, and
compilation was all 16 bit. As I went along I would combine
layers into one layer and then go to the next file and start adding
more layers. But this got to be creatively stilting as I was
locked into big blocks of combined layers, and about 1/3 of the way
through I went to 8-bit, and then I began shooting JPG - Large.
There is so much resolution in the thing - it could easily be 12 feet
high at 240 if I wanted to recreate it again with the original files (I
made them all 4 inches wide in this version) - anyway - I would need a
much better computer to really do this in 16-bit with say 75 layers.
Now, here's what would be really fun: a super laptop so that you could
work in the fresh air - and have your subject in front of you so you
could do your compilation in a more fluid way. One of the reasons
I did this scene in the first place was that it was just downstairs
from me. There were many times when I would go shoot something,
come upstairs, plug it in, realize it wasn't right, go downstairs and
shoot it again, etc.