I’ve been photographing people for most of my career. A quick look at my history will tell you that some of my earliest work was published in the newspapers for whom I worked. Most of the images published in a newspaper are about people. It doesn’t matter what section of the newspaper that you find pictures — news, features, entertainment, sports and so on — they are about people. There are very few nature, wildlife, scenic or even cityscapes found on those pages. Not that there is anything wrong with those categories of pictures. I photograph a lot of those subjects myself. But, that’s where I first learned to make the kinds of portraits that I do today. My portraits are typically not posed, little momentsand slices
of life. But, they aren’t made on the sly. Even if we aren’t collaborating, the people whom I photograph know that I’m making their picture. The little selection of portraits that I am showing you were made all over the world. Hong Kong, Thailand, South Africa, Texas, Hawaii and New Orleans. The represent a broad cross-section of my career.
This post should take about 100 years to produce. The categories and tags alone will take a long, long time to write.
Anyway. PAD. Picture a Day. A lot of photographers do this. Some don’t make it. It’s a really tough discipline to shoot SOMETHING everyday. Some guys claim that they only shoot when their muse calls to them. That’s easy. That’s fun. But, try shooting when you don’t want to. Try shooting when you almost forgot to do it. Try doing it when you aren’t feeling well, or as I did when I was recovering from surgery. As an aside, the early the images from that period were pretty bleak which as they should have been since they say that all art is autobiographical. At any rate, I’m a little OCD. I’ve been shooting this project for over three years. It seems that every time I reach an endpoint and tell myself that I’m done and not going to resume, I take a break and start again. Sometimes I start on one of my two birthdays. Sometimes I start on a new year… either calendar or lunar. But, I always go back to it.
Aside from the discipline of forcing myself to shoot, there are other benefits. It’s a daily look into my life as I saw it at the time. It gets me out the front door — well mostly; sometimes I see things around the house — and since a big part of making a picture is getting there, every little bit helps. It keeps the motor running — if you’ve ever picked up a camera after a shooting break
, you know that you are fumble fingers for a while and you might forget the mental checklist that you run through before you shoot. Most importantly, it teaches me a lot about myself.
All of that said, there are way too many pictures — 30 (I know, I know.. February only had 29 days, but I believe in lagniappe which is the giving of a little extra like a baker’s dozen) — to tell all of their backstories except to say that since I photographed Mardi Gras for almost three weeks, this month’s PAD is really heavy on carnival images. But, there are other images. There are images that you’ve seen in earlier posts. There are also surprises here and there. I hope that you enjoy them. As usual, I always enjoy making them.
This needs almost no explanation. If you are in New Orleans during Mardi Gras and you are watching parades as they roll by and you’d like to have some beads or any other kind of throw, you raise your hand and try to catch the attention of the bead thrower. The old school way of asking for throws is “Throw me something mister.” Now, you do whatever you can since parades are getting more and more crowded every year. Sometimes, you might want something more than just a string of colored plastic beads. Most krewes, these days, usually have throws with identifiers on them.