last week i had the privilege of meeting up with acclaimed painter and print maker garrett speirs. his studios are located in a stunning 100 year old barn. the portrait above was captured above his lithographie print studio - i'd love to hear your thoughts. below are a few of his paintings and to see more of his work click here.
a little while ago, i had the privilege of photographing the actress isabel lucas at a beach north of santa barbara (click on the images for a larger view). i was using my old wood and brass large format camera with expired film. i just scanned these and feel like they have a wonderful mood, tone and feel. i'd love to hear your thoughts - which of the two pictures do you like best?
pat curren in his backyard in santa barbara. if you're a surfer you know that pat is part of one of the surf community's greatest families. yet what's inspiring about pat, is that he shines in his own way - you can see it in his eyes. (click the image above for a larger view)
i usually don't post other people's pictures on my blog, but i thought this was great exception! my good friend todd glaser (an amazing person and photographer) just sent me this photo he captured of me while i was shooting photos for the cover of my book visual poetry a few years ago. how interesting to have that perspective - thanks todd! to learn more about the book or to view the cover - click here.
one of the things that i like about being a part of brooks institute is that it is an environment that encourages people to take risks, experiment and to try out new ideas. the other day i decided to try working with kino flo lights. they provide a interesting continuous light source. i simply asked some of the student walking by to step in front of the camera and this is what i came up with. click on the image for a larger view and let me know what you think? do any of these work for you? my favorite is the "guy in the green shirt."
the question: would a course on wedding photography be of interest to you? if so read on!
i am not a wedding photographer per se, yet i think photographing a wedding is one of life's greatest challenges and privileges. yesterday, i had the honor of photographing stephanie and cameron's wedding. the wedding was special for the usual reasons, yet even more it was an honor because the bride, her daughter sydney and others in the wedding party are good family friends, the bride is one of my wife's colleagues, and last year she was our daughter's 1st grade teacher! even more, there is a heart wrenching, meaningful and beautiful story that lead up to this incredibly hope filled, authentic and beautiful day.
while reviewing the photographs, this particular photograph stopped me in my tracks. there is so much love, warmth, connection and beauty. all of this got me thinking about so many things, including wedding photography in general.
these days, the line which defines or separates the professional and amateur wedding photographer has been blurred. if you have a decent camera and enjoy making pictures, there is a good chance that you will eventually be asked to photograph your sister's, friend's, cousin's, etc. wedding. thus, it's no surprise that the majority of the weddings that are photographed are done so by photographers who shoot between 1-10 weddings a year.
yet after being asked to photograph a wedding, the next few questions which surfaces are, "how am i going to pull this off? what gear should i use? and more importantly, how am i going to capture the moments of this day in a way that is authentic to me and at the same time meaningful to the bride/groom?"
all of this has lead me up to a question for you. after mulling over my own experience, i got to thinking that it might be worthwhile to create an online video course or a small book on the topic of how to photograph "my best's friends wedding" so to speak.how to capture strong photographs even if you aren't, or never want to be (like myself), a full-time dedicated wedding pro? such a course might include both straightforward and artistic advice, interviews of from some of the industry's best (elizabeth messina, jose villa, etc.), and more...
so here's the question - would such a course/book be worthwhile? and if so, what kind of topics would you like to see covered?
rodney smith is one of the most profound photographers of our time. his work is thoughtful, thought provoking, elegant, intriguing, timeless and true. its impossible to clearly express how much i admire and appreciate rodney's approach. if there was one photographic workshop that i would take, it would be his. if you aren't familiar with his work, click here to view his portfolio or click here to view his blog.
i had the incredible privilege of visiting rodney at his home and studio in new york. it was an inspiring experience that has made a huge impact on who i am, how i see and the pictures that i strive to make. our conversation, a tour of his studio and the making of some portaits (like the one above) are all part of one of my new courses at lynda.com called, "narrative oortraiture: on location in new york with rodney smith"
whether you are a photographer of just want to be more creative, my hope is that this course will change who you are, and how you see the world. this course is a unique chance to learn from one of the world's best, that might just revitalize, deepen and change the photographs you make. if you have already seen it, i'd love to hear your thoughts. otherwise, don't wait any longer and click here to view the course today!
last week i had the privilege of creating some portraits of some of the brilliant people who make lynda.com such an amazing resource (if you haven't heard of it before, click on the link to learn more). i was especially excited to try to create authentic, telling and vibrant portraits of the two co-founders/owners lynda and bruce. (bruce is an unbelievably creative and fascinating person, mentor and friend. i haven't gotten to his portrait yet, so i'll save that for another post! for now, back to lynda....)
lynda is one of the most inspiring and wonderful people i have ever met or known. she has a keen and curious mind, a sharp intellect, a kind and compassionate heart and sparkling eyes. lynda is a leader, teacher and someone who sees the best in those around her. above is an iphone snap of one of my favorite pictures that is hot off the press (or desktop printer in this case).
as i tacked it up on the wall i was struck by that ever-present contagious creative spark that shines so brightly in her countenance, smile and eyes (i think i'm going to leave this one hanging in my office for a while!). and if you have ever met lynda, you know what i mean. if you haven't met her in person, perhaps you've experienced a bit of who she is by way of the benefit of using the amazing educational resource and training site she has created - three cheers for lynda!
and so,whatever your experience, if you have a lynda or a lynda.com story that you would be willing to share, i'd love to hear your thoughts!
making photographic prints is incredibly exciting. of course the magic of the darkroom is incomparable, yet i still think modern print making is magic! today i was eagerly hovering over my printer as this image started to peer out and i snapped this iphone pic - anyone recognize who it is?
chris is a fascinating artist, thinker, traveler and surfer. i like this portrait but can't exactly pinpoint why. what are your thoughts?
yesterday, i met up with the dave rastovich, chris del moro and crew for a journey/organization called "transparentsea." they are currently on a sailing/surfing journey that is all about raising awareness of coastal environmental issues focused on cetaceans (whales and dolphins). above is a photo of one of the guys, howie cook, in front of an ad hoc painting he made during one of the stops. howie is a fantastic artist and guy - you can see it in his smile and eyes. to learn more about howie click here
to learn more about the cause click here
last week i dropped off a roll of film that had been sitting around for a while. i didn't remember when or what it was used for. i just opened up the scans and this was the surprise that i found - a quiet moment of my daughter annika leaning on a playground fence. to fully experience this picture you have to click on it to view it larger in order to absorb all of the texture and film grain. i still find myself moved by the exquisite quality of film... and this isn't about film vs digital - i embrace all types of photography. rather its about savoring moments before they slip away. i'll post a few more pics from this roll (which was from an early morning walk with annika) over the next couple of days.
this is a portrait of my neighbor fran. below you'll find the same photo in black and white. color or black and white - which do you like best and why?
actor mitchell thomas / photographed in santa barbarahasselblad 503cw + tri x film
i had the privilege of meeting up with photographer erik almas in san francisco to collaborate on a new project he is working on. at this point i can't say too much, but i can say that it is going to be amazing! erik is a fascinating artist and person - someone i admire. his approach to photography and life are inspiring. i made the portraits above at his home in sf. check out a few of his pictures below.
click here to view more of his work!