earning. Always learning. Practicing. Always practicing. Mostly trying to have fun with the pictures I make. It wasn’t always that way. Pictures were how I made my living. I don’t do that so much now. For sure, I still accept assignment but I don’t go courting them.
That is too much work.
As you know, I’m lazy. Maybe not so much, but if you are busy chasing assignments and all of the rest of the stuff that goes with it, you spend 80% of your time working on business and 20% of your time making photographs.
How much fun is that?
These days, if there is something I really want to photograph for someone, I’ll build a campaign which could take months to come to fruition. That’s really old school, but I’m not looking to be discovered on Instagram. A lot of picture buyers and assignment makers used to troll there. I’m not sure how many of them continue to do that.
A lot of younger photographers still think that they do. At least that’s based on their tags. They won’t tell you a thing about the picture. Instead their tags are directed to various publications. That may be the big difference. Publications still pay pretty much what they did when I was getting started.
Who wants to work for that?
Meanwhile corporate clients, the kind that I want, understand that assignment fees rise just like everything else in a normal economy. They aren’t on IG looking for the next great photographer.
That’s a good thing.
You should earn your way to that level. Photographers shouldn’t be famous because of the number of followers they have or the number of likes and shares they generate. Photographers should be famous for the work they generate over a long period of time.
was thinking about the rest of my photographic career when I stumbled upon a photographer called David Carol. What caught my eye was something in his biography.
He said that he was the first Image Bank assignment photographer. The division of Kodak for whom I worked was The Image Bank. The only TIB photographer and staffer was me.
Eventually, I’ll try to get to the bottom of this because it’s akin to stolen valor.
However, after looking at his work and reading about him I don’t much care about his bio because he shoots like I do, or I did. And, his philosophy is like mine. He said, “I don’t photograph homeless people or people who can’t defend or protect themselves. I genuinely it’s exploitative and it doesn’t interest me to do or see. Pick on people your own size.”
The difference between us is he’s published a large number of books and hangs in all sort of galleries and museums.
I ought to be jealous, but I’m not. He spent his time cultivating street photography as art. I spent my time doing just about everything else.
They keep saying that age is just a number. I’m going to test that.
I have a huge black and white archive. You’ve seen the best of my photojournalism in past Storytellers. That’s not what I’m talking about.
I must have ten thick binders. I started to try to archive them when I realized they were organized by date.
But, those images were made the same quirky way that I photograph sometimes. There are probably gems in there that I haven’t seen in years. It’s time to revisit every one of those binders. Or, it’s all a bunch of rubbish.
I’ll find out.
his is all technique so you get a right hand column.
I made this picture while I was sitting by the pool, looking up.
The picture is on point. The point being that you’ve seen this kind of image in the past.
I decided to do something about that.
I left well enough alone in Snapseed. But, then I came to OnOne for finishing.
That’s when I went crazy with experimentation.
I aded and subtracted stuff. I looked at a finished image and tossed it in the bin.
I started again.
After more of this experimentation I started to find a thread.
I followed it. I eventually came to the end. That’s the image you are seeing.
I darkened the image. I added fake bokeh. I added that sunburst. I added some glow.
o. I turned in another direction and saw this sky which was very different from the one that I showed you yesterday. The brightness of the light as I looked across the scene changed everything including the color intensity.
In case you are wondering, the weather is still cool and dry. In fact, it’s even cooler today than it was yesterday. The weather should stay that way for a few days. Warmth will return for a day or two as summer struggles to hold onto its grip only to fail as the sun moves lower in the sky until it begins to rise after the shortest day of the year.
We’ll pass through Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Year, The Twelfth Night and, with luck, Mardi Gras. That’s a funny way of looking at things, isn’t it?
Mardi Gras matters down here.
Not only are there a huge number of tourists who pump millions dollars into our economy that we dearly need, but there is a feeling of celebration in the air. We could use a little celebration after these two long, dark years. I could use being on the streets to photograph something that I love. For me, that’s enough.
In other words, I’ve come to a place where I have to weigh risk and reward. It’s not lost on me that if I get sick with the virus I could die. But, living the way I’m living now may keep my body alive, but my spirit and soul are dying. If they die, what I have preserved?
all really came today. Cool winds. Cool temperature. No air conditioning. Windows wide open. No apparent humidity. People celebrating.
I’m not sure about the last statement. People celebrating. That may be taking it a little too far. Let’s just say people are happy. I’m happy.
That’s why I’m late. I went and stayed outside. Inside work be damned. Not quite. I have a lot of inside work. I’ll get to it eventually.
But, first… more out side.
I made this picture on one of our amazing sun shows at the end of the day. This is also the season for those. I followed my own advice and turned around to see what was going on. This was going on.
The factory building was a little too low to pick up the sunset’s color. But, the sky. Oh man, the sky. It went crazy. That’s really the point of this picture. Everything else just sort of anchors the sky.
A little over six weeks ago Hurricane Ida blew through. While her rainfall didn’t do too much in my neighborhood, 155 mph winds did.
They blew down almost every kind of cable and power source. Our power company, Entergy, did the best the they could and had us repowered in about two weeks. Cox followed right behind. They all picked up their damaged goods and cleaned up their messes.
Along comes AT&T. They got their service repaired but picked up nothing. The foreman flat out lied and said they would pick it up the next day.
Now comes my calls to their corporate office. Do you know how hard it is to reach an actual human being at AT&T? I lied my way through their switchboard when I finally reached a maintenance and repair division of business accounts.
I reckoned I was trying to get a business account — AT&T’s — looked after. Heh. They said the problem would be taken care of within a couple of days.
Yesterday I called The District Attorney of Orleans Parish and filed a criminal complaint. At their suggestion I also filed a civil suit.
Since their corporate headquarters are located in Dallas, Texas, and my attorney’s office is also located there, I filed in Dallas County, Texas.
Nobody wants to go to court there.
I doubt that I’ll recover the ten million dollars in damages I am asking for, but I’ll finally get their attention.
All they had to do was finish their job.
et me tell you another story. A better one.
I took a stroll in a place that I rarely do.
Look what I found. I found autumn in the pine needles and mud.
That made me happy because we are drifting between the moment of early fall and real fall.
This is when I get really impatient. It’s not cool and there aren’t enough red leaves. t’ll get here soon enough, but until then…
Grumble, grumble, toil and trouble.
The picture is easy. Expose properly and there is no work in post production.to speak of.
There is an interesting thing happening with the block design. Every time I try to do some actual design, the system messes with me so I eventually give up and go back to this kind of page layout.
hat a nice warm fall day we had. I’m ready for the heat of summer to go away, but I’m not ready for the cold of winter to arrive.
The light has been especially pretty. I did miss the sunset of sunsets on Saturday evening, but this is the time of year when one sunset leads to another. It’s the time of year that photographers in the deep south cherish.
Maybe I’ll be lucky and make some memorable pictures. As you know, I think it’s less a function of luck than it is being there.
You know. Go outside, walk around at a certain time of day and you’ll get “lucky.” It’s harder now because the other dogs like to walk during the day. The all seeing dog liked to walk around dusk. I miss that dog.
That’s where I have to stop.
his won’t take long. Not, that I don’t want to talk with you about pictures. But, there is a reason I ended as abruptly as I did on the left side.
This picture is a result of looking at the wonderful light and thinking, “Oh my gosh.”
You push the button a few times and that’s it. The picture is done.
There is absolutely no post production except for a bit of sharpening.
ore changes. I knew that I wanted to design some kind of gallery. I’ve done it in the past. Good luck with that. Now the gallery template is divided by columns so the images are divided into long thin columns. A casual viewer wouldn’t know what they were seeing unless they they opened each picture.
I suppose that’s one way to get you to spend more time on the page, but it seems kind of funky to me. And, not in a good way.
You can’t keep a good man down, they say. I suppose who they is talking about. Good man, indeed.
Being stuck inside the house has pushed me to look at things a little differently.
his is about light. The key component of any photograph.
This just may be a little more focused on light than normal since it is light that makes thee three pictures.
I saw the pictures. Or, they saw me. I pressed the button and that was it.
Editing was simple. Darken the images and make them a little contrasty.
The first thing I noticed was how the blinds carried the outdoor color. I decided that I’d better photograph it. So, I did.
The next thing you know, I was playing with the files and this image is what came of it. I think it’s sort of pretty. It inspired me to make pictures of other things that I might not normally think about photographing. The two pictures, one above and one below came from looking out the window, as the sun was dropping on the horizon line.
I like them. I hope you do too. Who knows what I’ll see next.
T his was once good business. Along came Hurricane Katrina who changed everything with her floodwaters the poured through broken federal levees. A lot of businesses were destroyed or closed. Smith Tire seemed to linger. Whenever I passed by, it seemed to be closed. Or, was it ever open? I have no idea. I’ve heard, […]
A s you know by now I change my mind a lot. Whaddya want from me? Heh. I’m an artist. Or, so I think. I will still do my experimental layering, but those images come together when they are ready. I tried to do a couple yesterday. They were forced and it showed. I also […]
T his picture was made of a little of this and a little of that. I mean it. There are three pictures in there lurking somewhere. None of them were made at the same time. One was made in New Mexico. One was made in New Orleans. And, one was made in Shrewsbury. The last […]
ave you ever shared a dream? We did. This morning. I woke up thinking ,”Whew, what a dream.” I was thinking about what I saw and felt, when from the other side of the bed came, “Oh my God, what a dream.”
I started talking about my dream and pretty soon she was filling in the parts I was leaving out. Then, we got scared. How is this possible, we wondered? Was this a weird thing or was this the best thing?
Why worry about it? The person closest to me, the one who I adore is able to actually appear in my dream. Well, wait a minute. I was seeing things like I normally would. It was not dream-like. People weren’t just showing up. I was looking and seeing. It was the same thing for her. We were looking for something. We didn’t see each other in this strange land.
Where we looking for each other? Had we split up to save time and distance? I have no idea.
One thing that struck me was the color. It was my kind of color. Bright, bold, contrasty. The scenes were almost cartoon-like. I liked wherever it was that we’d found.
My hope is that one of these nights, well early morning, I return to this place. Maybe this time, we can travel together.
he water caught my eye. I just pointed and shot. I repeated that a couple of times, slightly changing the framing and the length of the lens.
The picture at which you are looking is the first one. Sometimes instinct is the driving force behind good art.
I’m not sure that this picture is even close to art, but it’s the thing that I saw first.
It needed a crop to get rid of some clutter. That’s why it’s square.
You know that I’m not a big fan of square crops. I think it displays a lack of confidence by the photographer or designer.
For sure, a group of nine pictures cropped square and laid out as a big square looks very cool, but don’t hurt the photographs.