Monday, February 20, 2012

'Giovanni & Francesca Castellano' & Social Reform Photography

We, as writers, have to remember WHY we tell a story.

What held the 'gangster dog' WIP (Work-in-progess) back for an incalculable amount of time was by the fact I remained stuck in one character's head and POV (Point of View).

Since rewriting the story to show other characters' stories became my watershed moment. The floodgates literally and figuratively opened and I began to see the possibilities and connections being made and reinforced.

The above picture is supposed to be a family photo of my male protagonist with his eldest sister. They are only months apart and therefore, extremely close.

While researching this story, I came across many historical photographs with children and their families in Turn-of-the-century New York, as well as from photo albums.

Jacob Riis - please refer to my links at the bottom of this post! - was an important documentarian through the pictures he took in preserving history of Old New York.

I have tried, because this is a historical drama, to capture the feel of what it meant to grow up, live and die during those years.
What did Native New Yorkers want for their families, and what did New York immigrants want for their children? I hope as a writer, as well as storyteller, to capture such in the illustrations above. I hope as an artist to let readers be drawn into this story as I am.

NOTE: There was a documentary called "The Other Half", about the social reforms brought about because of Mr. Jacob Riis and Mr. Lewis Hine.
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(Personal endorsement) *Read NPR.org. Listen to NPR on the radio. Embrace it. Be informed. Be enlightened.*

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