A Stroll Down Super Bowl Boulevard or How The Super Bowl Invaded NYC in 2014

by davidbrommer

Seattle Sea Hawk Fans rampage in NYC

Seattle Sea Hawk Fans rampage in NYC. Zeiss 12mm 2.8

Attention Suspect Photography Fans- Finding Photographic Style and Composition in NYC 4 Day Intensive Workshop April 17th to April 20th 2014. Early Registration Discount By March 1st. 

I’m not a jock. More of an anti-jock actually. So when the Super Bowl in 2014 invades my town I’m not excited. However there is no denying that it will have an impact on my city, and it’s my job as New York artist to document this occasion, especially when 7 blocks of Broadway is closed and turned into a Super Bowl conflagration. The Super Bowl is part sport, part commercial and all American. Broadway was transformed into a huge commercial sponsor fest for few days leading up to the big game. I figured I’d go and stroll down “Super Bowl Blvd” and see if I could find some images.

Helmets in Herald Square. Fujifilm 35 mm f1.4

Helmets in Herald Square. Fujifilm 35 mm f1.4

In case you wanted to see exactly where the sponsorship was street signs were modified. Fujifilm 35mm f1.4

In case you wanted to see exactly where the sponsorship was street signs were modified. Fujifilm 35mm f1.4

The morning of my plans to do this I posted on my Facebook my intentions and got into some lengthy discourses and what struck me the most, a number of my Facebook friends said they did the stroll and had trouble finding images. A challenge! The glove was down, can one fringe artists walk among massive commercialism and come back with a decent image or two? You be the judge.

Kids could be overwhelmed, I wonder if he will remember these days when he is grown up. Fujifilm 35mm f1.4

Kids could be overwhelmed, I wonder if he will remember these days when he is grown up. Fujifilm 35mm f1.4

It's New York after all, you have to one true fan of real NY in the mix. Long Live The Ramones!

It’s New York after all, you have to one true fan of real NY in the mix. Long Live The Ramones!

I chose to bring the Fujifilm Xpro1 with my three favorite lenses, the 12mm Zeiss, the 18mm F 2.0 (which I didn’t end up using) and the 35mm f1.4. I set the camera to B&W mode and shot away.

It's sports.. you have to have ESPN.

It’s sports.. you have to have ESPN. Fujifilm 35 mm f1.4

The crowds were daunting. Movement was a crawl. So many fans, so many New Yorkers. But we are used to crowds are we not? Zeiss 12mm f2.8

The crowds were daunting. Movement was a crawl. So many fans, so many New Yorkers. But we are used to crowds are we not? Zeiss 12mm f2.8

Later I opened everything up in Photoshop and burned the edges and did some cropping where needed. Pretty minimal, I was using the +/- exp comp due to some back lighting. I believe you getting it right in the camera and conducting minimal post process.

I don't know much about Football, but I think this position is called "The Tight End". Shot inside the NYgard store. They had models gogo sports dancing their tights. Fujifilm 35m f1.4

I don’t know much about Football, but I think this position is called “The Tight End”. Shot inside the NYgard store. They had models gogo sports dancing their tights. Fujifilm 35m f1.4

In the back of my head were the comments from the nay sayers saying they couldn’t find and image. Well it was crowded. Really crowded and I thought how the hell couldn’t you find an image in this crowd?

The Hulk and Bane showed up. After I shot them, they demanded a buck for the pose. I didn't want to piss them off, so I figured it would be best to cough up a buck before Hulk smashed. Zeiss 12mm f2.8

The Hulk and Bane showed up. After I shot them, they demanded a buck for the pose. I didn’t want to piss them off, so I figured it would be best to cough up a buck before Hulk smashed. Zeiss 12mm f2.8

I was looking forward to the Toboggan and how to shoot it. I settled on a slow shutter speed and “hail mary shot” holding still. The image was shot at 1/5th of a second at F16. The 1/5th gave me just enough blur to make it count for more than a snap shot. A tripod would have helped, but this is street shooting, no tripods allowed.

Slow shutter speed to give the subjects movement. Fujifilm 35mm f1.4

Slow shutter speed to give the subjects movement. Fujifilm 35mm f1.4

Yup, this is on Broadway. So weird, such a production.

Yup, this is on Broadway. So weird, such a production.

The lesson here is to just keep shooting and look for that image. I’m sure in 10 or 20 years looking back to when they brought a Super Bowl to NYC these images will age well.  So when its something out of the ordinary, grab your gear and shoot.

the fans, the football... the hashtag. It's 2014 all right.

the fans, the football… the hashtag. It’s 2014 all right.

~David

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