- Early Pittsburgh Photography - Kukucka Photography -
As I'm continuing to organize and edit my film negatives I've been reminded that I did a lot of street photography of Pittsburgh when I went to the Art Institute of Pittsburgh back in the late 70's. This beautiful, diverse, and friendly as hell city was brand new to me then, and I'm so glad I took the time to walk around and really look at it at "that age". It was a significant time for both of us - both on the verge of major renovation and a coming into our own. I love that we first met when we were both kind of gritty, and young.
I wanted to feature this photo from that time period of a man who would always sit on the corner of Fifth and Market in downtown Pittsburgh and ask for change. He would always have his radio with him, tuned to gospel music. I passed him several times on any given day, depending on how much class I was skipping, or how adventurous I was feeling with my camera that day, even if it was for an overdue photo assignment. He was always kind enough to allow me to photograph him during my time there, early in my dance with photography. He was the subject of many last minute assignments in understanding light and dark, shadows and grays, and he was always the perfect subject for what I needed to understand, as if there for just that reason that day. I remember him being there no matter the weather, and always with his music - covered in plastic if it was raining.
I just wanted to thank him, wherever he is - likely on the other side of the thin veil by now, but it does't matter where he is, I know he can hear my thank you. Looking at the photos I have of this gentleman I can only imagine how hard it must have been to be him.
Thank you Sir. You are wealthy beyond all the change in Heaven.