Charlie and Ringo.

A moment of silence, please.

Rest in Peace, Charlie Watts.


Trumpet player.

I’m sorry that there is no text beyond these few words. I had a pretty well written piece that was complete. It was written, edited, the details were done. When I went to hit the schedule button, the button was light blue, not its normal color. It didn’t and wouldn’t work. Additionally, when I went to the draft file there was nothing saved.

I give up.

I’ll let you know when the new website is ready.


Trumpet player at rest.

T

his is another of those “found” pictures. I know where I made it. I have no idea why I did. Now that I see it, I like it.

Maybe , it’s incompetence.

Maybe I’m just as incompetent as the next guy. I’m starting to think that anything good that I’ve ever done was just luck.

Or, it come be two other issues. Maybe I just wasn’t meant for these times. Or, maybe people who make things just don’t think.

It started last night. I wan’t to “get” an app on my Apple smartphone. I found it. I was ready to download. But, first I had to hit this little bitty side tab twice. I tried every which way. I even just held my finger there and moved it up and down.

No joy.

I gave up. This stuff is supposed to make it easier, not harder.

Then, comes this computer that I’m working on as I write to you. First, it was mud slow. I rebooted it. That sped it up.

That was yesterday. Today, most of the apps wouldn’t open. Reboot again. Finally. Stuff works.

So. You get to look at a photograph.

T

here is a problem in this picture that I can’t seem to repair.

See that arm?

The color of the entire arm is the lightest brown, Look at the hand and the forearm. This guy must have been working on a car before he went to the second line.

I doubt that he was, but look at him.

I thought I had moved the color closer together in OnOne, But, when the picture arrived here, the darkened color returned.

My only theory is that whenWordpress did it’s final compression the mid tones were removed leaving only the dark tones.

This usually happens in light colors, but as I said on the other side, I wasn’t meant for these times.


Cowboy boots and dancing feet.

El Rancho de los Golondrinas harvest festival is one of the best in the nation. USA Today says the they are number two. I don’t know if that matters, but it sure is a lot of fun. You can eat, make food products like cider and watch the entertainment.

Going there made a good day trip from Albuquerque since it is located just a bit south of Santa Fe.

I made a lot of different kinds of pictures there, but this one was the most loved. It ran as an ad for the New Mexico tourism folks. It ran as an advertisement for the gallery of which I was a part. It also is a part of many people’s private collections.

Of course, I like it when a picture is licensed as part of an advertising campaign, but, it’s humbling when it hangs on somebody’s wall. They liked enough to want to live with it.

Whenever I made a day trip like this I included the work in my PAD project. It made that day’s looking a little easier. Over the course of a year sometimes easier was better.

It means you worried more about making the pictures rather than worry about the logistics of looking for the pictures.

Isn’t that what we want? Pictures.

I feel like I’m not helping you at all.

This is the classic F8 and be there picture.

I worked my way around to the back of the stage which wasn’t hard because backstage was just a dusty plot of land and nothing else.

I photographed until I was done. A couple of other photographers saw what I was doing and joined me. There was no competition at all.

Post production was minimal and the final picture was as you see it.

It’s getting boring around here, yes?

Stay safe. Stay strong. Stay mighty. Wear your mask. Wash your hands. Get your jabs. Look after each other. Be patient.


Graphic Bucket List Picture

Changing attitudes, changing altitudes.

Sometimes I get bored with my own work. The trick is to keep making pictures. Eventually, the pictures evolve into something different. I get lucky sometimes and options appear while I’m in the field working.

That’s the case with this picture.

A brass band was playing in Woldenberg Park, which is a location in The French Quarter that is a few yards from the river. They were playing just beyond a bridge.

I started trying to make a graphic image. It didn’t work for most of the musicians. The overhead shape, just wasn’t there. It worked for the guy playing the tuba, which is really a sousaphone.

In the streets it’s a tuba. Call it a sousaphone and you’ll get a lot of blank stares, even from the guy playing it.

In many ways I made the picture of my dreams. I wish I could do that at neighborhood second lines. They don’t come close enough to buildings. There are a couple of second lines that cross a bridge. They are walking over it, not underneath it.

If we ever get back to the streets, I’ll get back out there. I’ll shoot a lot less while looking for angles from which to make unique pictures. I hope.

Stay safe. Enjoy every po’ boy.


Jazz Funeral for John Prine.

I am an old woman
Named after my mother
My old man is another
Child that’s grown old

If dreams were thunder
And lightning was desire
This old house woulda burnt down
A long time ago

Make me an angel
That flies from Montgomery
Make me a poster
Of an old rodeo
Just give me one thing
That I can hold on to
To believe in this livin’
Is just a hard way to go

When I was a young girl
Well I had me a cowboy
He weren’t much to look at
Just a free ramblin’ man
But that was a long time
And no matter how I tried
Those years just flow by
Like a broken down dam

Make me an angel
That flies from Montgomery
Make me a poster
Of an old rodeo
Just give me one thing
That I can hold on to
To believe in this livin’
Is just a hard way to go

There’s flies in the kitchen
I can hear them there buzzin’
And I ain’t done nothin’ since I woke up today
But how the hell can a person
Go to work in the mornin’
And come home in the evenin’
And have nothin’ to say

Make me an angel
That flies from Montgomery
Make me a poster
Of an old rodeo
Just give me one thing
That I can hold on to
To believe in this livin’
Is just a hard way to go

RIP — John Prine 1946-2020


Reflection.

Mardi Gras parade season.

We come for all sorts of reason. Some like the excitement. Some like the floats. Some come for the throws. I come for the music. I come for the marching bands. Of course, I photograph anything that moves. But, it is the bands that move me the most.

In the past, I use to publish images day by day. Parade by parade. That’s one way to organize pictures. These days, I publish by category. Today, the pictures are all about music. Heh! As if you couldn’t tell. Today is also a day off from the parades because nobody rolls on Monday. I may make my way down to the French Quarter and photograph the silliness there. We’ll see.

We also have to go grocery shopping, or make groceries as they use to say around here. I say “use to” because I haven’t heard that phrase in many years. Anyway, after yesterday’s brunch we are all out of food. We have some king cake, which is fine for breakfast this time of year. But, all cake and sugar does not make Jack a happy boy.

Happy Mardi Gras.

All smiles.


It feels like music.

I made a picture.

I made a musical picture. At least, that’s how I see it.

I don’t know why, but it does. It’s very likely that it will look like something else to you. That doesn’t matter. We all bring our life, our experience and our influences to all art. That’s why you like a piece of art or a bit of music, and somebody else doesn’t like it. It has nothing to do with being good or bad. It has everything to do with you.

To do with you. That little phrase is really a mouthful. That’s the key to making changes. Rather than blame outside influences, change yourself first.

We’ve all being complaining about social media, news media and what have you. It never stops. It’s ugly. People are nasty. The change is simpler then we realize.  Adjust your thinking. For instance, I had a lot of political commentary on my Twitter feed. That just was wearing me down. So, I changed things around. Now, I mostly have people discussing music, art and photographs. Much better. I even removed the White House. 24 hours of propaganda gone. Better yet.

I did the same thing on Facebook. I’m only there to share my work and to talk to old friends. I’ve silenced any political discussions for 30 days. I expect those discussions to be even more shrill as the 2020 general election approaches. I’ll just keep putting those threads on a 30 day silence.

I feel so much better today. Mondays are usually hard for me. I start out in a bad mood. Then, the usual stuff starts. Not today. I have a smile on my face.

You can do it too. Should you? That’s up to you.

Consider this, the general din, the hollering and the continual nonsense from our leaders isn’t going to change anytime soon. Who needs to keep hearing it?

Now, about this picture. It’s really three pictures layered over each other. The base was a Fourth of July wreath. I followed that with a dirt pathway. And, finally I added the pink flowers. You’ve seen the flowers. The other two images are new to you. But, not to me. For instance, the Fourth of July picture was made before the big celebration… in 2018. I just never had a use for it.

The rest of the process is mostly adjustment. The layers have to make some kind of sense to me, and, hopefully, you. There are color, brightness and contrast adjustments too. That little extra tinkering takes some time. There are a lot of false starts. There are some close, but no cigar, starts. Eventually, it all works out.

Sounds a little like life.

There you have it.

Art as life.


A giant mural.

They say it comes in threes.

Ronnie Virgets. Chef Leah Chase. And, now Mac Rabennack.

You might know him as Dr. John. The Night Tripper.

The good doctor passed today. His family said that he had a heart attack around day break. He’d been sick for a long time. I’m not sure with what. Doesn’t matter now. I know that he lost a lot of weight. That’s a hard thing to do in New Orleans. About 18 months ago he cancelled two shows at Tipitinas. That was the last of his scheduled performances. He spent that time at home, but on the Northshore.

Needless to say, New Orleans is reeling. We are sad. So sad. We haven’t even buried Ms. Leah yet. Her viewing is planned for Saturday, with the funeral on Monday. We are all invited to attend. We will.

Ronnie Virgets was a beloved author. His writing is the stuff of legends. I arrived on the scene a little too late to know it well. And, he wasn’t that well known out of the city. That’s too bad, because what little of his work that I did read caught the heart, soul and spirit of the place I call home.

But, Mac.

Oh man, oh man. He’s beloved everywhere. He started making his own albums in the late 60s. He was a session player until then. He had a rough start in New Orleans, doing things that would make tough guy rappers run home crying to their mamas. He’s been sober for longer than I have. Things change. We change.

How well known?

When you have a Beatle tweeting about his passing, you know how much he mattered to the music world. He played with just about all of music royalty, without ever adopting those trappings himself. Not only did he produce his own work, but he was an enthusiastic collaborator on other musicians projects.

Yes. I knew him. You’d see him in grocery stores or running errands. He was old school and gracious when he met a fan in the usual places. I photographed him once, formerly, at his home. I was paid for a half day. The shoot ran well over that. There weren’t any problems. We were telling stories and laughing so hard that tears were rolling from our eyes. Like they are as I write. I wish I was laughing now.

I wish that I could show you a picture from that take. Sometimes, a client will ask for an embargo until they have gotten their best use of an assigned set of pictures. I’ll call them tomorrow and ask if I can post one here. There shouldn’t be a problem.

For now, here’s his mural, painted in Central City. I almost like this better than the environmental portraits that I made at his home.  I made this picture on the way to some place else. A second line.

What can I say?

Desitively Bonaroo. The best of the breed. That he was.

Rest in Heaven, Mac. You meant a lot to us.