S a Bagel?

There were many places to get good bagels in New York City. Where my wife and I lived, it wasn’t a long walk to Ess-a-Bagel. In Yiddish, ‘essen’ means ‘eat’. Therefore ‘Ess a bagel’ means ‘Eat a bagel’. What could be simpler? The bagels were enormous there. So enormous in fact, that a diet expert advised me to cut them in thirds along the edge, instead of in half, to make a healthy sandwich. Whitefish on a poppy bagel was my favorite.  I used to schlep there on a Sunday, pick up the New York Times (when it was full sized), and get half a dozen bagels, some white fish and, if I was feeling really extravagant, some lox and cream cheese. Then, a short walk home and it was time to feast and read, then make sandwiches for the coming week.

Today’s watercolor experiment:

Ess-a-Bagel fits right in with my interesting-storefront genre. It may not be as interesting as the Trattoria Dell’Arte from yesterday, with its oversized nose in the window, or the classic look of the Central Park News edifice, but I consider my snapshot, a family photo. This is where we went to get some our favorite meals.

Photograph: Bagel Store on 1st Avenue and 21st Street in NYC

Ess-a-Bagel – Reference Photograph

Below is my ink sketch:

Ink Sketch: Bagel Store on 1st Avenue and 21st Street in NYC

Ess-a-Bagel – Ink Sketch

The fire hydrant, the trash bin and the newspaper dispenser and adjacent pole cast short shadows, allowing the entire storefront to be lit by the bright morning sun.

Below is my watercolor rendering of this scene.

Watercolor: Bagel Store on 1st Avenue and 21st Street in NYC

Ess-a-Bagel
4″x6″ 140# Mixed Media Paper

My favorite image of the three presented here, is the photograph. Being a family photo of a sort, I read into it more than is there. For example, the direct lighting from the east reminds me there are no buildings across the street. It also reminds me of my walks home, squinting my eyes against the sun, my mouth watering just waiting to dig into my whitefish in between two halves of a poppy seed bagel.

2 thoughts on “S a Bagel?

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