My wife and I have been living in a small apartment for a few months, while we are looking for a new home, after selling our old place. It has been a real education on a number of levels. Some have been more personal/ philosophical and others have been more photographic/professional. Together this impromptu education has been an added benefit in what we knew was going to be an interesting experience. This week’s blog will explore the parts our experience that involve my current favorite topic, the changing nature of professional photography. Read More
I just finished up three short workshops in Singapore. As always, I enjoyed the place and the people there immensely. (The hot sticky weather is another story.) The food is good, the workshop where I was teaching is great and the infrastructure there is amazing. Still, my favorite part of Singapore is the struggle going on about their future. They are collectively aware that in order maintain their status as one of the most vibrant economies in the world they need to keep moving up the economic ladder. The step they aspire to make next, to become innovators/creators of new products and services, has the potential to vault them to the top of the pyramid. Read More
The phrase “Hell Week” refers to a number of similar rituals, among them the initial time of hazing in college fraternities, the most rigorous component of the United States Navy SEAL training program, a police academy’s most rigorous training regimen, the technical week of theatre rehearsals or the most common usage, the week of intensive conditioning before the start of any season of a sport. There are undoubtedly other examples of this ritual of hard work, emotional stress and personal challenges. The first “Hell Week” that I survived was at the start of my first of two seasons playing water polo in sunny Southern California. A couple of friends recently survived what I have come to think of as the “fine-art photography” version of “Hell Week.” Read More
I am now working out West. Last week I was in California photographing for my ongoing project on the foreclosure crisis. This week I am in Arizona photographing and teaching a workshop at the Tucson Rodeo. I am thrilled to be out of the cold in the Northeast. Since coming West, I have been watching some of the winter Olympics. That way I get to look at plenty of snow and ice, without, of course, the shivering that comes with it. Watching the competition in Vancouver, I noted the ever-narrower differences between the medalists and the also-rans. This got me to thinking about evolutionary biology and that lead me back to photographers.
In my photography, my teaching and my discussions with other photographers, the idea of variations on a theme comes up often. For me, one of the joys of looking at photographs is seeing the different ways that photographers interpret the same thing. Yet, when some photographers come together to talk or photograph they can get territorial about their imagery and their ideas. Recent events have reminded me why this kind of thinking is limiting. Read More
During my recent trip to Vietnam, I put to rest the lingering anxieties, stereotypes and misconceptions that I had held on to concerning that country. On that same trip, I also “finished” a long-standing (and rather informal) “personal project” that I had been working on for a couple decades. Since I was eighteen I have been subconsciously trying to “understand” Communism. The project was not an overtly photographic one, but photography certainly helped me in my pursuit of better understanding of that ideology. Read More
I write this from Santorini, Greece, where the light simply is amazing. I am having so much fun during my first trip to Greece that this blog post is going to be limited to a brief grab bag of things I have been gathering recently. I hope you find them interesting. Read More
A friend/former student wrote me with a great question. He wrote: “I have an opportunity to license some images to a travel company for their brochures. I’ve never done this before and therefore I’d love to get your quick opinion of what the right price range should be. The email below is from the director of communications from the travel company.” Read More