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NYC-Camouflage-Trina-Merry-bodypaint-series-UntappedCities-Central Park-001  Central Park, image via Trina Merry

Trina Merry, a painter and photographer from New York, just released a striking series of photographs that feature female subjects painted and positioned to camouflage seamlessly into iconic New York City backdrops. As featured on Refinery 29the artist has the following motive in “New York City Camouflage”:

“My series is an homage, and a challenge, to Big Apple women who feel the need to blend in with everyone else in Gotham. I think many women move here hoping to live ‘Sex and the City’ lives when the reality is most women have to ditch their fancy designer heels on the subway for more practical sneakers.”

NYC-Camouflage-Trina-Merry-bodypaint-series-UntappedCities-NYC SkylineNYC Skyline from Brooklyn, image via Trina Merry

The models in the photos are of different facial and body types, but they share one thing in common: they wear sneakers. The pictures seem to contradict the traditional concept of a female model who wears the finest heels and fits a certain bodily standard. The figures aim to represent the diverse and hard-working community of women who walk and work on the streets of New York City.

Manhattan-Bridge-Trina-Merry-Bodypaint-Artist-Untapped CitiesManhattan Skyline, image via Trina Merry

NYC-Camouflage-Trina-Merry-bodypaint-series-UntappedCities-New York Public LibraryThe New York Public Library, image via Trina Merry

St.MarksPlace-camouflage-Trina-merry-UntappedCitiesSt. Marks Place, image via Trina Merry

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NYC-Camouflage-Trina-Merry-bodypaint-series-UntappedCities-Flatiron Building

One thing is certain: the painstaking and exceptional painting skills it takes to carry out work of this caliber.

Coney Island-Bodypaint-Trina-Merry-Untapped CitiesConey Island, image via Trina Merry

Learn more about Trina Merry and her work on her website and Facebook page. You can keep up with the latest in the New York City art scene by following our coverage of the NYC arts and culture scene. Check out our latest piece Apps Transform the NYC Subway Advertisements into Street Art

Which artists and events have you been following lately? Share your tips with Anna Brown at her Twitter handle @brooklynbonanza

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Twice a year, Fashion Week descends upon New York like a swarm of well-dressed bees. There are clothes! There are models! There are famous people! There is media attention! Here’s my brief brush with fame for the week: on my way to sketch night on Tuesday I was annoyed to find my path blocked by a herd of excited people staring at the door of the Belstaff store on Madison Ave. Uggghhh, I thought, get out of the waaaay. A small army of photographers were laying in wait with cameras at the ready, each of them dressed in black. Which celebrity was about to grace us with their anointed and highly-paid presence? And out sauntered a grinning David Beckham in a leather jacket, followed by a trail of lesser-known models, also in leather. It was a really nice jacket.

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There is something magical about finding a place in Central Park where you can look all around you and not see any buildings poking above the treetops. It’s as if you’ve found a portal in the middle of the country’s biggest city. Such spots are surprisingly rare because of how narrow Central Park is and the height of its surrounding buildings, but they can definitely be found. We’ve listed seven of our favorites below. If you know of any others, feel free to add them to the interactive map above or leave a comment on the post!

1. The Loch

theloch-centralpark-NYC-untappedcities copy

Just below the Pool is a charming little manmade waterfall that flows into the Loch, which winds its way northward through a ravine. The Lochs course presents multiple opportunities for building-less spots because of its low elevation and overhead vegetation. Apparently we weren’t the only ones who enjoyed the scenery; you can make out a man painting the landscape on the far right of the above panorama.

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Bushwick Aberdeen- Anna Brown-Untapped Cities

One of the most amazing things about New York City is its subway system, with 468 stations currently in operation. In the past, Untapped Cities has covered how New Yorkers have creatively occupied these spaces to provide unexpected services such as getting a hair cut,  or having keys made.

This week, we were excited to discover the Bushwick Ave-Aberdeen Street stop off the L train. Usually, small businesses house their services within the subway station. At this stop, the subway entrance itself is housed between two used car dealerships–Zaki’s Auto Land and Dawan Motors LLC. Digging into the history, the station was built in 1928, while the two car dealerships opened after.

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Here’s what the Untapped staff is reading in the HQ today:

Standards-manual-nyc-MTA-untappedImage via Pentagram

Ever wonder about the NYC’s subway signage? Most New Yorkers who use the subway daily have probably never heard of the design firm Unimark. In 1970, designers Massimo Vignelli and Bob Noorda of Unimark created a language not only for how people would read subway signs, but also the way people would use the NYC subway for the next 44 years. The published document was a 13″ x 13″ Standards Manual held together in a 3-ring binder. And now, Pentagram is hoping to bring it back via a Kickstarter campaign that goes until October 8th. It’s been so popular that they have raised more than 5x the $108,000 goal so far.

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