Joe Thomas Grazia
Credit: Supplied by Joe Thomas.

The overall negative media coverage of New York is overblown in my opinion. There is not anarchy in the streets, it is still an amazing place to be. But with that said, the middle of the pandemic was scary and there is so much still unknown about what could happen. Personally, I am very lucky. I am healthy and financially secure, so I am only grateful. The frontline workers are the real heroes who saw the worst of the situation and kept the city running.

There is still so much beauty and hope in the city. I have photographed the city more in the past few months than I have at any other time and my followers have been more appreciative. I’ve received many messages from people, who either moved away from the city or are unable to visit due to quarantine restrictions, saying that my photos are their window into New York. It’s a privilege to be able to share a glimpse into the city now and show its enduring beauty and resilience.

My main clients are in the travel and hospitality industry so work has been very disrupted… but it is coming back quicker and in different ways than I expected. Many jobs that required travel are postponed until next year, but I’ve received a good amount of local work in recent months from pent up demand. I’m excited to take a break from travel and dive even deeper into capturing the city.

Joe Thomas
Credit: Joe Thomas.

I passed the time during lockdown by… reading. I love history. It helps give context to the craziness of this year.

The thing that gives New York’s neighborhoods that unique character and feel are the old, locally owned businesses. Many are struggling to survive right now and the city would lose a lot of its community and diversity if they go away.

You can’t replace New York. You can’t replace its energy, opportunities and vitality. The people who love the city will stay and rebuild it.

Follow Joe @joethommas

Deep Dive Into Other Stories From Downtown New Yorkers here

“Gotham: The Rebuild” was first published in the eighth edition of GRAZIA International. Purchase your copy here.

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