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Location, Location, Location

Top five photo backdrops in NYC

No one captures edgy snapshots of city kids quite like Mei Tao, a New York photographer who shoots the fabulous advertising campaigns for Crewcuts, among others. So we asked Tao to share her favorite cityscape backdrops for we parent-photographers who are addicted to taking pictures of our kids. “New York is my backyard,” says Tao, who grew up in Brooklyn, went to high school in the City, and takes snapshots of her 7-year-old daughter everywhere they go. “I feel like if you are shooting kids they can be anywhere. The picture is where the child is, maybe it’s your kid sitting in a stroller sucking her toe.” That said, here are Tao’s top five shutter spots in New York.
Fort Tryon Park has the most beautiful Western light in the afternoon. The Cloister is also right there to see some medieval art. • The Staten Island Ferry always reminds me of the opening scene in Working Girl, and I can hear Carly Simon singing, “Let the River Run.” It has killer views of lower Manhattan, plus its free—and fun. Brooklyn’s Floyd Bennett Field, a defunct airfield that was New York’s first municipal airport, makes you feel like you are no longer in the city—wide-open space, a great place to explore. • Jacob Riis Park/Beach, in the Rockaways, offers a real taste of Brooklyn leisure without the craziness of Coney Island; there’s also a huge playground, very open so you have plenty of space to run around, and to shoot. • Under the Brooklyn Bridge in Dumbo, you can try to capture the view of the bridge and lower Manhattan—it’s awesome . . . and the kids can throw pebbles in the water. And, if you want to go indoors—the Museum of Natural History, by the dinosaurs, of course.”

Mei Tao