I wanted to do a portrait on the stoop because I was fairly new [to New York City at the time], so my eyes were wide open to the texture. California’s a fairly young state, but the texture in New York, the texture of the buildings—we don’t have that. When we were doing this shot over in Brooklyn, we did a few around a few bodegas, cats was hanging out, everybody was around. It was just me and I think I probably had just one assistant then. I wanted to do a portrait, so that part I set up. Then I said, I want to get everybody in on this one, because everybody was just kinda of hanging out while I was shooting. I said, Let’s just gather everybody up; let me just do a portrait on the stoop. I wasn’t trying to recreate the one in Harlem, nothing like that. It was just a moment, a portrait of all these cats, ’cause I felt like it was a strong energy. I just wanted to do a quick portrait like that.
That was on Big when he pulled the piece out like that. I had seen it before, but that was his move. And then when his eyes did like that and when he just went there, it’s not like I said, Let’s do it again. I think I got two pops of that and that’s it.
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