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What It Would Look Like If You Dropped Manhattan Into the Grand Canyon
July 20, 2013 5:06 PM   Subscribe

Through the use of Photoshop, Swiss photographer Gus Petro shows us what it would look like if Manhattan was dropped into the middle of the Grand Canyon.
posted by reenum (66 comments total) 12 users marked this as a favorite

 
I like it. Let's do it.
posted by bunderful at 5:08 PM on July 20, 2013 [28 favorites]


Is the Grand Canyon actually that wide? I guess I'm gonna hafta go.
posted by rikschell at 5:12 PM on July 20, 2013


Is the Grand Canyon actually that wide? I guess I'm gonna hafta go.

Manhattan is 13 miles long by 2 miles wide, while the Grand Canyon is 18 miles across.
posted by junco at 5:16 PM on July 20, 2013 [1 favorite]


Manhattan is very small because unfortunately physical size is not proportional to self importance.

Bloomberg is working on it though.
posted by Ad hominem at 5:21 PM on July 20, 2013 [7 favorites]


So basically Las Vegas.
posted by Foci for Analysis at 5:22 PM on July 20, 2013 [3 favorites]


Looks like Roosevelt Island and part of Western Queens got dropped in there, too.
posted by Ice Cream Socialist at 5:22 PM on July 20, 2013 [1 favorite]


Looks like Roosevelt Island and part of Western Queens got dropped in there, too.

You are right, don't think you are coming with us when we move,queens.
posted by Ad hominem at 5:25 PM on July 20, 2013 [10 favorites]


The buildings seem way too tall. I think they'd be barely a quarter of the height of the canyon walls.
posted by CheeseDigestsAll at 5:34 PM on July 20, 2013 [4 favorites]


All the smog and air pollution would settle at the bottom of the canyon.
posted by edgeways at 5:35 PM on July 20, 2013 [4 favorites]


Who goes to America on vacation? Surely some place less well-armed has weaker currency than we do.
posted by Brocktoon at 5:35 PM on July 20, 2013 [3 favorites]


This is cool. Thanks for posting it.
posted by Tell Me No Lies at 5:39 PM on July 20, 2013


What's great about this is the scorpions will come in and go to town on the roaches. Of course then you've got to deal with scorpions.
posted by crapmatic at 5:40 PM on July 20, 2013 [22 favorites]


I like it. Let's do it.

No way. The East Coast built that thing they can keep it for themselves.
posted by Tell Me No Lies at 5:41 PM on July 20, 2013 [1 favorite]


scorpions

They would die after while unless they can adapt to living on pizza crusts.
posted by Ad hominem at 5:42 PM on July 20, 2013 [2 favorites]


and yeah .. tallest building in NY would still be about 3800 feet from the top of the GC. So, think of a island of asphalt dwarfed in height and width, entirely surrounded by a thick layer of automobile exhaust.

The pictures ARE cool, but they grossly exaggerate the size of the scale difference.
posted by edgeways at 5:43 PM on July 20, 2013 [3 favorites]


New York is what it is because of where it is. It can no more be removed from its environment than the Grand Canyon can.

Please Photoshop a giant cat into the Grand Canyon. Thanks.
posted by GenjiandProust at 5:50 PM on July 20, 2013 [11 favorites]


Can we fill it in after?
posted by DU at 5:54 PM on July 20, 2013 [5 favorites]


Best I can do is a large cat under the ice... not the same at all
posted by edgeways at 5:56 PM on July 20, 2013 [1 favorite]


It can no more be removed from its environment than the Grand Canyon can.

You telling us what we can't do?

We might just move there out of spite and bring some hipsters with us.
posted by Ad hominem at 5:59 PM on July 20, 2013 [2 favorites]


I'm just beginning to acclimate to this year's humidity. Please don't drop me in dry heat.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 6:06 PM on July 20, 2013


What It Would Look Like If You Dropped Dr. Manhattan Into the Grand Canyon
posted by oulipian at 6:08 PM on July 20, 2013 [40 favorites]


More accurate title: "What It Would Look Like If You Dropped Manhattan Into the Grand Canyon and then Made All The Buildings Bigger and Taller So It Looks Interesting Artistically But Now You've Pretty Much Entirely Lost the Entire Point of the Whole Enterprise"
posted by dmd at 6:09 PM on July 20, 2013 [38 favorites]


or "What It Would Look Like If You Carefully Placed Manhattan Into the Grand Canyon Because If You Just Dropped It, Everything Would Be Pretty Much Broken"
posted by oneswellfoop at 6:20 PM on July 20, 2013 [22 favorites]


The year was 1842. Ebenezer Hattersfield, Zacharia Pettiford and Daniel Jones, along with their families, mules, oxen and wagons, were heading west. A new life beckoned. But when they reached that mighty Grand Canyon, and saw Manhattan looming below them, their hearts sank. "Emma," ol' Ebenezer said to his wife, "we'll never get the kids into a good preschool there!" Daniel threw up his arms and exclaimed "Three thousand dollars a month for a one-room hovel on Mott Street? They're out of their minds!" Zacharia just spat into the dust and said "That ain't no place fittin' for a human bein' to live in".

They turned their wagons around and headed back to St. Louis.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 6:29 PM on July 20, 2013 [36 favorites]


The idea reminds me of this, from a previous post, which shows the scale of various buildings in downtown Toronto to the Kidd Creek mine in Timmins, ON.
posted by The Notorious SRD at 6:34 PM on July 20, 2013 [2 favorites]


You can ride a borough to the bottom.
posted by hal9k at 6:34 PM on July 20, 2013 [63 favorites]


So this would place Sedona smack in the middle of NJ, near Philly? I would love to see that.
posted by not_on_display at 6:42 PM on July 20, 2013


What a craptastic imaginary fate for the House of Stone and Light. On the other hand, if there were any way really possible for that to happen, and remain seamless for the likes of Arkansas, Nebraska, Wyoming and Oregon, at least, it would almost be worth the loss of that wondrous gorge to unobstructed human view for several thousand years, while the vastly diminished Colorado River still occasionally pummeled that man made butt plug once erected at the end of the Hudson River down to sand and rust, all over again.

And given time to itself, even an eye blink in geological time, perhaps even the long suffering Hudson might finally form a respectable delta.
posted by paulsc at 6:47 PM on July 20, 2013


The buildings seem way too tall. I think they'd be barely a quarter of the height of the canyon walls.

Bear in mind the canyon doesn't have a nice flat bottom and sheer walls. So if you're going to stick Manhattan in it there's a lot of filling and leveling you have to do, and who's to say how high that would bring the bottom up. I'm thinking pretty darn high.

The width of the canyon is measured at the rim, so you can't stick Manhattan very far down because it narrows and is full of pointy things. So these pictures are not unreasonable.
posted by George_Spiggott at 6:52 PM on July 20, 2013 [1 favorite]


crapmatic: "What's great about this is the scorpions will come in and go to town on the roaches. Of course then you've got to deal with scorpions."

Scorpions are awesome... They bring you the feel good juice.
posted by symbioid at 7:08 PM on July 20, 2013 [3 favorites]


Rough outline of Manhattan over a little bit of the Grand Canyon [MapFrappe]
posted by rh at 7:10 PM on July 20, 2013 [5 favorites]


George_Spiggott : The width of the canyon is measured at the rim, so you can't stick Manhattan very far down

That doesn't mean we can't try...
posted by pla at 7:10 PM on July 20, 2013


I can't imagine going to all that effort without filling in the hole afterwards. Seems sloppy work to me.
posted by pompomtom at 7:38 PM on July 20, 2013


What's great about this is the scorpions will come in and go to town on the roaches. Of course then you've got to deal with scorpions.

That's what the rats are for.
posted by ryoshu at 7:59 PM on July 20, 2013 [2 favorites]


What's great about this is the scorpions will come in and go to town on the roaches. Of course then you've got to deal with scorpions.

That's what the rats are for.


That all sounds very Discworld-ian
posted by edgeways at 8:03 PM on July 20, 2013 [4 favorites]


The width of the canyon is measured at the rim, so you can't stick Manhattan very far down because it narrows and is full of pointy things. So these pictures are not unreasonable.

Well the obvious answer then is to put Manhattan in topside first.
posted by Tell Me No Lies at 8:03 PM on July 20, 2013 [11 favorites]


> You can ride a borough to the bottom.

Damn it! I was wracking my brain for a good "donkey in Manhattan" joke and then you go and do that.
posted by planetesimal at 8:05 PM on July 20, 2013 [3 favorites]


I think if you dropped Manhattan into the Grand Canyon, there wouldn't actually be many buildings left standing.
posted by Joakim Ziegler at 8:07 PM on July 20, 2013


Depending on what height you dropped it from, it might look something like really chunky rocky road ice cream in an irregularly shaped hand carved wooden bowl.
posted by absentian at 8:07 PM on July 20, 2013


hal9k, I checked on that massive black hole you evaporated to create the energy needed to generate that pun, and it's pretty much gone. Congrats.
posted by RobotVoodooPower at 8:19 PM on July 20, 2013 [4 favorites]


The view is reminiscent of riding out of the western end of the Lincoln Tunnel on an NJ Transit bus.
posted by HeroZero at 8:22 PM on July 20, 2013 [2 favorites]


tallest building in NY would still be about 3800 feet from the top of the GC

Only if you put it in the inner gorge, which I doubt is wide enough at any point to contain Manhattan. It's obvious from the pictures that the intent is to put it at the level of the broad shelf that contains Indian Garden, about 3000 feet down from the rim. So the tallest buildings would be about halfway up.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 8:38 PM on July 20, 2013


I liked the previous idea of damming the Hudson and making all the reclaimed land a huge national park.
posted by The Whelk at 8:56 PM on July 20, 2013 [1 favorite]


Of course then you've got to deal with scorpions.

That's what the rats are for.


Then the burros will eat the rats, and the sewergators will eat the burros.*

*Except for Brighty. Brighty is off limits.
posted by FelliniBlank at 8:58 PM on July 20, 2013 [1 favorite]


We could move everything there brick by fucking brick and then turn around and haul it all back again and the second avenue subway still wouldn't be finished.
posted by elizardbits at 9:02 PM on July 20, 2013 [6 favorites]


Is the Grand Canyon actually that wide? I guess I'm gonna hafta go.

Pictures don't do it justice. One of my favorite road trip moments was taking my wife there. She had never been, despite living in Arizona all her life, and she thought it would be kind of pretty, but hey it's just a big hole in the ground. We're driving on the road to the visitor center, and we're chatting. Then there's a small gap in the trees where she got just the briefest glimpse of a tiny bit of the canyon. She stopped talking mid-syllable and after a few seconds finally got her jaw off the floorboard. The Grand Canyon will make you feel really small.
posted by azpenguin at 9:32 PM on July 20, 2013 [5 favorites]


I've been looking these pictures over, and I'm pretty sure they're faked.
posted by Devils Rancher at 9:49 PM on July 20, 2013 [14 favorites]


Metafilter: really chunky rocky road ice cream in an irregularly shaped hand carved wooden bowl.
posted by Lipstick Thespian at 9:54 PM on July 20, 2013


symbioid: "crapmatic: "What's great about this is the scorpions will come in and go to town on the roaches. Of course then you've got to deal with scorpions."

Scorpions are awesome... They bring you the feel good juice.
"

I should have introduced y'all to Fluffy "Abdul" Lipschitz, my now (sadly deceased) Emperor Scorpion...
posted by Samizdata at 10:01 PM on July 20, 2013


Who goes to America on vacation? Surely some place less well-armed has weaker currency than we do.

The Chinese. Oh, sorry no, my bad, you said less well armed with a weaker currency.
posted by Mario Speedwagon at 10:57 PM on July 20, 2013


There are so many french people in town tho
posted by The Whelk at 11:01 PM on July 20, 2013


Good point. Let's wait for them to leave before we move. Don't want the french knowing where we are.
posted by Ad hominem at 11:13 PM on July 20, 2013


I don't know why I love stuff like this, but I do. This merge looks pretty sci fi. I would like Manhattan and the Grand Canyon to stay separate, just where they are, but then a 3rd place--maybe on mars--that is this merge of the two. And then a 4th place with the Grand Canyon, Manhattan, and that giant cat someone mentioned.
posted by freejinn at 11:15 PM on July 20, 2013


Fluffy "Abdul" Lipschitz

i feel this is the appropriate moment to mention that i know a pony named murray horowitz
posted by elizardbits at 11:41 PM on July 20, 2013


Of course then you've got to deal with scorpions.

That's what the rats are for.

Then the burros will eat the rats, and the sewergators will eat the burros.*

*Except for Brighty. Brighty is off limits.
posted by FelliniBlank at 1:58 PM on July 21
[+] [!]


That's the brilliant part! When winter rolls around, the gorillas simply freeze to death!
posted by DoctorFedora at 12:23 AM on July 21, 2013 [2 favorites]


How high are we allowed to drop it from? Because this may allow us to reinterpret the joke about lawyers and bankers at the bottom of the ocean...

Also, new meaning to the term 'Wall Street'.
posted by Nanukthedog at 4:24 AM on July 21, 2013


Looks like Roosevelt Island and part of Western Queens got dropped in there, too.

Roosevelt Island is part of Manhattan! At least Zipcar thinks so; we had a car reserved in Chelsea last night to go to a wedding, and it wasn't there when we arrived. I called Zipcar to get another car, and the lovely lady I spoke to on the phone tried to send me to "123 Main St" and I said, there is no Main St in Manhattan. She said, yes there is, Roosevelt Island? Then I died. True story.
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 4:55 AM on July 21, 2013 [3 favorites]


Good work, now 'shop in Nik Wallenda walking over the city.
posted by Renoroc at 6:52 AM on July 21, 2013


Seeing the Grand Canyon in person is something I recommend. It’s so big it’s hard for your brain to process it, it looks fake when you’re standing there looking at it.

Although I’m sure there are lots of fun things to do, you really don’t need to be there all that long. I’ve driven for hours and stayed for an hour or two. If you make it part of a road trip around that whole area it works out great.
posted by bongo_x at 9:24 AM on July 21, 2013


If you like this and science fiction, I'd recommend the pretty great series Cities in Flight by James Blish, which answers the question what would happen if you flew Manhattan into Outer Space.
posted by velebita at 11:34 AM on July 21, 2013 [2 favorites]


"To make it, Petro took the photographs he had of the two sites, matched their perspective points and lens angles, then put them through a process he calls 'Photoshop magic.'"

That's the most impressive part of this to me. Not the Photoshop part, but that he was able to make them from pre-existing photographs instead of photos made specifically for this project.

Matching two photos' "perspective points and lens angles" (not to mention their lighting and shadows) is really difficult even when the photos are explicitly taken to be Photoshopped together later, much less this.
posted by Ian A.T. at 11:52 AM on July 21, 2013


Devils Rancher: "I've been looking these pictures over, and I'm pretty sure they're faked."

Yeah. You can tell by the pixels.
posted by deborah at 12:45 PM on July 21, 2013 [1 favorite]


I was going to photoshop a whiskey/vermouth-cocktail-in-a-martini-glass beverage picture into a picture of the Grand Canyon, but oulipian's idea was quicker and better.
posted by Cookiebastard at 1:15 PM on July 21, 2013 [1 favorite]


"Manhattan is very small because unfortunately physical size is not proportional to self importance."

I guess that's good news for my penis.
posted by Iknowno_one at 5:35 PM on July 21, 2013


I don't know if Manhattan could take that much desaturation.
posted by Mister_A at 8:03 AM on July 22, 2013


ThePinkSuperhero: "Roosevelt Island is part of Manhattan! At least Zipcar thinks so"

They were right, though. Roosevelt Island is part of the borough of Manhattan. [/pedantry]
posted by Chrysostom at 7:35 AM on July 24, 2013


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