Captured

Specters and the City

A German photographer focuses his lens on New York City's Village Halloween Parade

Ah, Halloween.

A day for eating gross amounts of candy if you're a kid (or a kid at heart), and possibly taking in one or two libations too many if you're an adult.

We also hear you're supposed to dress up, and New York City's Village Halloween Parade takes that part of the holiday seriously. Non-costumed revelers need not appear — and they'd look awfully out of place anyway.

So well-known is the event, in fact, that German photographer Oliver Fluck decided to make the trek from Princeton, N.J. in 2005, and see whether the hype was worth capturing.

It was.

Fluck returned a few times between 2006 and 2008 to catch a surreal mix of spooky revelry. Here he shares with us some of the stories behind those photos.

"It was memorable how cool and photogenic everybody was," Fluck, who has since returned to Germany, wrote in an email interview. "I had some good laughs and conversations. That applies to most pictures."

Fluck slowly turned his lens from the festivities to the "special charm of regular street photography with odd elements mixed in."

Give the City that Never Sleeps credit on doing Halloween right; Fluck wrote that he tried to take similar pictures in San Diego, but gave up after about five attempts.

"Halloween in the Village is very special, and I'm not even sure if the rest of the city can keep up with that," he wrote.

Most memorable to Fluck is the attitude of the New Yorkers he encountered on these evenings.

"New Yorkers in general … are easy to talk to and seem to accept everybody as they are," Fluck wrote. "On Halloween, it impresses me how seriously they take their costumes."

"It's almost as if some people wait for the chance to take on a different identity and live up to it."

**See more photos by Oliver Fluck via his website and his Facebook page**

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