Through the lens of a native Bronx photographer comes an intriguing new look at New York’s Capital Region.
Michael Roach, formally of the Bartow community, has recently released his first collection of works entitled “Street Photography of New York’s Capital Region.”
The book captures areas of upstate New York, Albany, Troy, Schenectady and Saratoga Springs.
“Through the book I hope to reflect the time, feelings and the surroundings in which we live that people have emotions about, whether they be good or bad,” said Roach.
Roach was raised just outside the Co-op City region and attended Mount Saint Michael High School before moving upstate to attend college at State University at Albany.
Coming from the Bronx has contributed to his career because, as he explains, he was able to develop an appreciation for the lifestyle and living situation of its residents, as well as an understanding of the difference in thinking and attitude between areas throughout the state.
Though he chose to continue residence in the Capital Region he frequently visits the Bronx and other areas of the City.
“I have a mother, sister and a few nieces who reside in the Bronx,” Roach explained. “I like the activity, even when it is late there is still a lot of motion. You get a sense of unrest but not of negative unrest, just of constant movement.
“Fordham Road I find to be a very dense area in terms of activity and motion, as do the major highways, like the Bruckner Expressway and I-95,” Roach added. “The activity draws me in; the fluent motion of traffic.”
Roach’s career began through computers and graphic design. He would try to find photos that could be used to enhance and match the designs he created and found this to be a frustrating and surprisingly difficult task. Taking his own photos would eliminate this problem by allowing him to capture the exact ideas he hoped to convey.
Also, as a child Roach was exposed to art through his father’s oil paintings. Sketching became a common way in which he would express his creativity and emotions. He began his path towards photography and compiling photo collections around 2004, though he expressed he has always had an appreciation for photography.
“Because of my background in imaging, I tend to go for realism. That realism is what drew me into photography, not just taking the image itself, but also telling a story,” said Roach.
Roach has future plans, which may include but are not limited to, a collection of photos capturing the history of the Bronx. His focus will consist of areas of “urban decay and the progress of the urban structure,” in order to show the distinct contrast between the two extremes. Roach hopes to depict the rich history of the Bronx through the use of modern photos.
Copies of his latest work can be purchased through Roach’s website at http://photos.micmon.net.