photo of the month
from randy kato

Just three days ago, a biannual New York City phenomenon had its spring occurrence here. Manhattanhenge - as it's known - is when the sun, just above the horizon, aligns perfectly with the crosstown concrete canyons of Manhattan.

I've tried many times to shoot Manhattanhenge sunsets and sunrises (which also happen twice a year), but as you can imagine, shooting directly at the sun is not easy. In fact, I hardly ever see good shots of this except for a few highly manipulated HDR (High Dynamic Range) composites.

This month's photo is an unplanned shot taken with my iPhone. Come to think of it, all my best Manhattanhenge shots were taken this way. Now I feel silly for all those times I got all geared up and went out specifically to shoot this event and came back with tons of photos that were all outdone by some cameraphone snapshots. :^\

For this shot I happened to be at a beach in Long Island City with a straight view all the way through 37th Street, halfway between the Empire State Building and the Chrysler Building. As the sun began to set I realized what day it was and tried to capture it.

I think I have other Manhattanhenge shots that may be better composed, have better colors, or surpass this one in other ways, but I really like this one overall. It must be the birds.


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