Photographer Laura Jean Zito is the Edge of Humanity Magazine contributor of these images. From the series ‘The Ironic Age’. To see Laura’s body of work, click on any photograph.
The Odd and Even Couple I was walking down Bleecker Street in New York City’s Greenwich Village. As I crossed Sullivan Street, I spotted this couple having a drink at an outdoor cafe. They engage in their differences by adopting each other’s manner of dress. The coffee table serves as a line of delineation, below which the man and the woman are both sporting blousy white slacks, fishnet stockings and high heels, and above which they adorn themselves with large sunglasses, fists full of rings like brass knuckles, bobbed haircuts and mannish black shirts. She on the right wears white sunglasses and he on the left black. Somehow, they have achieved a kind of equality that they both seem at ease with, and that perhaps might make us all think about how tied we are to prevailing attitudes of attire.
Belfast Piece An elderly woman out shopping in Belfast feeds the doves, a sign of peace, in front of murals on a wall, which Belfast is famous for, of the U.D.A., the Ulster Defense Association, and the U. F. F. (Ulster Freedom Fighters) a cover name given to the paramilitary attack group of the UDA so the UDA would not be outlawed. The birds, as a group, form the shape of a heart, with the point at the bottom grounded in the soldier’s boot., and his gun as the heart of the matter. The symbology on the mural takes the shape of a flying bat decorated with a cross, hovering menacingly above the three figures, the woman, a soldier in the mural holding a gun that appears to be pointed at a man walking on the street,, casually down the alleyway toward the woman, who eyes him with a somewhat tense gesture. The troubles in Belfast erupted over divisions between Catholics and Protestants.
Venice Beach A very fit and ripped man shows off his abs in his leopard Speedo and Nike Sneakers strolling down the boulevard in Venice Beach, California, with his female companion, who, by contrast, is limping on crutches. They are passed on one side of the sidewalk by a roller skater with a large hat looking as if dressed in garb from India who plays a guitar while gliding along, and on the other by a pair of conversing friends, one in a heavy leather jacket, the other with his jacket over his shoulder. Other characters abound in the scene, lending to the general variety under the palm trees. The bottom two letters of a sign spell out “SE”, and the ocean is hinted at on the left of the frame.
Letting Go A mother lets her child run into the water, reaching tentatively toward her as she rushes in headlong, clutching her doll. Still moored canoes symbolize the child’s voyage into life’s adventure, all awaiting her.
Wheel of Life An old farmer, Patrick Doherty of Portacloy, County Mayo, Ireland, is walking down the coastal road with a wheelbarrow full of handmade fence posts, a young lad whizzing by him in the opposite direction on a bicycle, with a fish in a plastic bag hanging from the handlebars bearing a graphic resemblance to a Slean used for cutting turf the old man is carrying in his hands. The two look at each other eye to eye. A perfect circle is formed by the empty space between them, as if they are cosmically joined in this “Wheel of Life.” In the Buddhist philosophy, the Wheel of Life is the life cycle itself, the pattern that is repeated, until we get it right, in terms of Wrong and Right, the duality of the human experience, with gods and divas and boddhisatva pulling the consciousness up to a higher level on one side of the “wheel,” while devils and animals and evil spirits pull the consciousness down on the other side. The wheel of life always has at the center, a snake, a pig and a cock. The perfection of Buddha’s teachings have traditionally been symbolized in art by the circular shape of the wheel.
Stars in Her Eyes An Ecuadorian Indian woman sells posters on the street, of Jesus, Jean Claude Van Damme and various rock stars.
Shady Boxer A scantily clad woman in Venice Beach, California shows off her Boxer dog with his own special sunglasses, looking very cool. The strength of the sun is accentuated by deep shadows crossing her bare legs, making them look as if covered in knee socks.
On The Road On the road to Wexford Airport in County Wexford, Ireland, a man is walking with the familiar pose of hands locked behind the back, unfazed by a Leyland truck charging in his direction. Also unfazed is a horse leisurely cutting across the road behind him. A Morris Minor car is whizzing past them both, with a license plate that says “Viz.” Heightening the sense of speed, other cars sit stationary at a Shell station, where advertising promotes diesel and stamps, and electric wires lace the skyline.
Walking The Line A lone man walks down the middle of the road in Abbeyfeale, County Kerry, Ireland.