This week in our City Perspectives, Billy Cress (@billycress) gives us a glimpse into Philadelphia, a city brimming with history, culture, and seasonal shifts.
How long have you lived in Philadelphia, and what is your profession?
About six years now. I’m a manager / in-house designer for a retail company.
If you could capture the essence of your city in one word, what would it be? Why?
Diverse. There’s so much happening in Philadelphia culturally and artistically.
How do you think that the beat or style of the city has informed your style as a photographer?
The city certainly dictates a lot of what I find interesting and what I subsequently choose to photograph. Philadelphia can be pretty fast paced, as most large cities tend to be, but I choose to focus on the quiet moments happening here.
What’s the best season to visit your city in? Why?
Each season is great for different reasons. We’re lucky in the north east to truly experience all four seasons. I would have to say Fall is when Philadelphia is most beautiful. Our tree-lined alleys are a hallmark and they put on a great show in Autumn.
Which coffee shop(s) are your favorite to spend an afternoon catching up on work or people watching?
The flagship La Colombe is in my neighborhood, Fishtown. It’s a massive cafe and distillery with its very own mural by Philadelphian street artist Stephen Powers. For a more quaint coffee shop I like Bodhi Coffee.
What’s a signature dish in your city and where’s the best spot to find it?
I was fighting the urge to say cheesesteak but I suppose I can’t. I’ll go with Tony Luke’s as my favorite cheesesteak.
Where’s the best spot to see your city from above?
The City Hall observation tower. Amazing 360 degree views of the city from just under William Penn’s boots.