29 September, 2006

American Badass

Check out the helmet to head size ratio. Something is off, but regardless, the nephew, the Kman, in the early days of his racing career. He smokes.

28 September, 2006


America is obsessed with perfection, perhaps the world is, but seeing as I live in America I think it is worse here.
I'm not sure I understand. Yesterday, in the mail, a brochure, photo-related, advertising an upcoming gathering of photographers. The level of retouching, airbrushing in this brochure was beyond anything I had ever seen. There was not an inch of skin, anywhere, untouched. There was nothing real. Not even the photos of the people speaking!
I have friends who photograph in the celebrity world, and the level of retouching goes so far beyond what most people realize they probably wouldn't believe it even if they have seen what I have seen.
But with celebrity I get it. It's not that I agree, but I think you would be hard pressed to find a more insecure lot on the planet. But I also think that world is so vicious and harsh that it leads to this insecurity. Everyone has to be perfect because if you show any sign of weakness you career could be over.
But with the rest of us lackies none of this makes sense.
Start with me. I'm 37, I'm aging. I've got lines, wrinkles, blotches, scars, barnacles, etc. That's what happens people. Deal with it.
For me, I think people look better as they age.
A photographer I used to know used a photo from 1970 as his advertising image, what he projected to the public. You could see the faces of people, as they met him in real life, and they were stunned. You know they wanted to say, "Whoa, you are not the guy in the photo."
He was my friend, but I still never said anything because it felt like a hidden world, something I should not enter into, something that he knew I knew, but that was not a subject open for discussion.
I think we are in a time now, at least as photographers, where we will look back in ten years, maybe twenty, maybe fifty and said, "Hey, cut them some slack, the computer was still relatively new, and they just didn't know when to say when."

Me Again

I just can't get enough of these snaps. My mom loves every single one of them.


Sometimes I do strange things. I had this cone mounted to my skull. I think it is earthy. I feel closer to nature. Is it obvious? Does it stand out too much?


Just outside of this frame was a Yeti I came across on the Panum Crater trail. He was from Jersey, just out with the family for a ten-day trip through the Sierras. He was a little camera shy otherwise I would have included him.
Contrarty to popular belief they had very tiny feet.

27 September, 2006

The Essentials

Do I have too much free time? Yes?

They Have Arrived

The pens. Here they are. Small, light, perfect. And a catalog, handwritten note. Perhaps custumer service is not dead?

A famous photographer once told me, "Pictures are fine, but for Christ's sake, write everything down."

Do it.

26 September, 2006

The Pen of Pens

Okay, have kept a journal for fifteen years or so, not everyday, but darn close. Words, sketches and photos, of course, just a place to put down my thoughts.
I'm pen picky, so finding one I dig is critical for my inner child. Otherwise, shame spiral.
So, recently, thanks to someone bringing these things to my attention, I found a pen I like. Nothing fancy, not fountain, not chrome plated with spinners. Nope, just a simple pen. The Inoxcrom Short Gel.
Problem is, once the first one ran dry, and it did rather quickly, which for some reason is fine with me, I couldn't find another pen.
So, I track the company, find an email address and bingo, send one off. Now I'm jaded, about life, about humanity, and fifteen years of documentary work has done nothing to improve my jade level. So, I send this email thinking, "see you later friend."
Then, something incredible happened.....they wrote back.
Not only did they write back, they said they are sending me a pen.
I'm stunned. Again. Humanity is not dead. Well, at least Inoxcrom is not dead.
Long live the pen.

Who Dat?

Okay, twenty-years as a New Orleans Saints fan has truly taken a toll on me. As a Saints fan you learn to live with little victories. A loss by only ten? A victory really. A back goes over a hundred yards? A win, regardless of final score. Quarterback only sacked seven times? Victory!
Now, suddenly, the world is a Saints fan. I'm not sure how I feel about this.
Last night, local sports bar, Monday Night Football. The stools around me, filled with meat-eating, red blooded, American males devouring anything and everything in their path. Burgers, steaks, Irish carbombs, fry it, serve it, down it.
There were mullets, guts, odd facial hair, and believe it or not, Saints gear.
For the first time in twenty-years, I see someone besides myself cheering for the team.
3-0, leading the division?
A Monday night domination of puny Falcon. The first win since the Cajun Cannon Bobby Hebert was at the helm. The days of Ironhead, the Aint's and the paper bags.
Things are looking up in The Easy.

25 September, 2006


Standing alone at the edge of the lake. A photo workshop invades. I hear whispers. I'm not using what I "should" be using, or "could" be using. Elephants through a glass house. The air is sharp, cuts and I feel frail in this environment where nature clearly has the upper hand. Around me hundreds upon hundreds of images are being made, or at least consumed. I wait for the light.
Now, shouting, "shoot with the light," "shoot against the light," two groups have formed amid the pack. The dominant wolf has yet to emerge.
"I don't know about you, but I'm DONE walking around," as tripod legs crash to the ground.
"Shoot, shoot the tafa or tofu or whatever that is," a voice pleads
I wait.


PS: All images on this site are copyrighted....just in case anyone was getting any wise ideas.

Mono from the water.

It's Official, World's Greatest Invention

The steam engine? The wheel? Potable water? Nope. Espresso coffee is the world's greatest invention. I asked around, and everyone is in agreement.
Espresso is art. Italians do it the best, don't know why for sure, but ask an Italian what makes a good espresso and be prepared for forty-five minutes of explanation. The water, the machine, and yes, the skill of the operator.
Potent, explosive, espresso is life itself.

23 September, 2006

Welcome Back

After all those days of film, recently, the return to digital yesterday for a portrait session. Return to blown highlights on a cloudy day. Oh, but remember, it's better. I forgot. My bad.
How many conversions for one image? Two? Three? Highlights, shadows, etc. Merge, paste, copy, layer, tweat, convert, paste, layer, feather, flatten, etc, etc.
Or, just shoot?
Confused. Still.

22 September, 2006

Old Blue

Uncle Joey on Mono, shrimpin and trying not to get his shoes filled with millions of tiny creatures.
Be the tufa Joey.

Chaos on the Crater

Near Lee Vining. High altitude and horrendous, noon light. It got to all of us. Then Willie found the old Army box, and within on hour there were black helicopters overhead. Really. Three gunships as well, but they left us alone. What was in the box Willie?

Yet Another Photo of....ME

Okay, I'm already bored with shots of me, and just imagine how many more are on the way. Scary. This was from "The Killer Bee," at the OC fair where I was snapping some stock snaps. The couple was full size, adult, human variety and the ride was meant for kids. Result..their bee wouldn't lift off the ground.

Getting Ready To Fish

The Little Laramie. My sister shot this pic.

21 September, 2006


The call comes in from the East Coast, three hours ahead of our daily news. "October first, no more film."
A few short days away, that seems a little premature. It doesn't make sense. At some point in time, sure, but not now. Forty million film cameras on the shelf, most of the developing world without computer access.
And, most importantly, it just works so damn well. The digital Taliban are trying their best to rid the world of anything that does not need to be upgraded every eight minutes, but I'm thinking film is actually making a slight comeback. Why wouldn't it? Pay $500 for a camera, use it for fifteen years, no upgrade needed, no software needed, no computer needed. And, as an archive, no contest.
I use both, using each system as needed, but ALL the personal work is firmly entrenched in the Old World.
Instant preview, don't want it. Ability to over shoot. Sorry, no thanks. Traveling with laptops, drives, chargers, adapters, etc, etc, nope, don't need it, don't want it.
Film is the great equalizer. You can't hide from a contact sheet. Life has no delete button.

20 September, 2006

Santa Fe

Message on a building in Santa Fe.

Storm Clouds

Northern New Mexico storm clouds building near Truchas.

19 September, 2006


Okay, as you can tell, this blog has been whacked down to just a set of bones. Whacked down from the massive archive it once was to just what you see. The reason? I'm going mainstream. Let me explain.
I've kept a journal for fifteen years, and each day I work with this beast writing as if no one will ever see or read what falls on those pages. In my mind this is the ONLY way to write. Otherwise, you've got a shallow PR piece, and frankly the world is filled with that dribble.
I'm a skeptic, what can I say. Blogs are common now, most are boring, in my mind, and many, sadly, are just watered down sales tools used to try and make clients think you are hip.
I'm not hip. Never have been.
In middle school I had feathered hair, parachute pants and white hight tops. From then on the idea of "hip" was lost forever. I'm okay with that.
I'm not the right guy for many clients. I'm okay with that too. But, for some clients, I'm the perfect person, and those people won't care what I write or uncover on this baby.
The truth can be unfortunate, and that's what makes life so fun. Now, get away from your computer and get out of the house. It's nice out.