The Real Deal New York

Getting the shot

A Q&A with veteran NYC real estate photog Ed Lederman
By Sarabeth Sanders | February 01, 2011 02:27AM


Ed Lederman with one of his Central Park photographs, currently on display at the Tria Gallery in Chelsea

Veteran New York City real estate photographer Ed Lederman could tell by early 2008 that the market was heading for a crash. Business was good … too good.

“When projects are selling themselves, there’s a lot less photography,” he said. A couple of dismal years followed, as a result of the bust. But luckily for New York, Lederman’s business these days is pleasantly thawed.

Recent projects include the interior marketing photos for the Corner at 200 West 72nd Street, a panoramic for Sheldon Solow’s 9 West 57th Street, and all the photos for the new websites of both Rockrose and Manhattan Skyline. He’s currently working on a book of Central Park panoramic shots — one of which just debuted at Chelsea’s Tria Gallery and is on display there through Feb. 19. The Real Deal caught up with Lederman on the gallery’s opening night to chat about real estate through his photographer’s lens.

Here’s an abbreviated version of the conversation.

You’ve been on hundreds of New York rooftops. Where are the best views of the city?

It depends on if you like a city view or a park view. I think the Rivergate on East 34th Street has some fantastic views. Also, 1 Central Park West, 30 East 85th Street, 200 Water Street, 19 Madison Square Park North and the Top of the Rock. But the irony of living in New York City is, some of the best views are from New Jersey.

What are some of your favorite buildings to photograph?

14 Wall Street is one of my favorites. … It has that big pyramid on top that was once J.P. Morgan’s apartment.

Any horror stories?

Most of the stuff I do is before the building is finished, so a challenging one was the Chelsea Stratus on 24th Street and Sixth Avenue. I had to walk up 43 flights of stairs with all of my equipment on three different nights to get the shots. … But I lost five pounds, so I was happy.

Where’s the coolest place your photos have ended up?

On Madison Avenue on the side of a bus.

What’s the ugliest building in New York?

I can’t lose all of those clients! Choose a block in the 30s between Fifth and Sixth avenues, and pretty much any of the buildings there. But hopefully people will start sprucing them up.

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