Street Photography is What Keeps Me Sane: Jerry Pena from New York

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Eric’s note: Earlier this year in NYC I bumped into Jerry Pena, a street photographer living in upstate NY. Funny story, he took a street photograph of me, and then I ran after him (not to beat him up) but to just chat. We shot a bit together, chatted about street photography, and I saw some of his color film work – and loved his refreshing style and aesthetic. See more of his color street photos below.

Jerry: My name is Jerry Pena and I’m a 27 year old construction worker living in upstate NY. I have a lot of time off in between jobs and street photography is what keeps me sane. I have always noticed the strange characters and interesting moments that happen on the streets of NYC and always wondered how I could captured them.

So, I started to walk the streets with a Canon XL-2 video camera thinking video was the right way to bottle up the things I was seeing. After gathering hundreds of hours of random scenes with no real story or way to edit them together, I realized still photography might be the answer. After shooting with a bunch of different cameras and formats (Bronica etrsi, Polaroid land camera, Canon n1, etc)

I finally did some research and came across videos of Jeff Mermelstein, Mark Cohen, and Garry Winogrand working. This naturally led me to the rangefinder and I never looked back.

Jerry Penna-

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