Tuesday, February 28, 2012

30-50 Project: Update 9

It feels like I've been shooting a lot lately. It feels really good to get out and do what I love. I don't mean that in that funny, stereotypical "Oh, I love it!" kind of way... I mean... having the opportunity to be creative and make something from parts of nothing is an amazing feeling. It's exactly the same feeling I get when playing Legos with my kids.... Making something from parts of nothing.

When I had the opportunity to shoot my friend, Jenn, I couldn't pass on it. Similar to Leah (from last week's post), I've known Jenn for a long time, but we've had an "on-again off-again" friendship. It's embarrassing for me to say, but since I often speak from my heart I say things that I mean, but since they never reach my brain before they reach my tongue... it gets me into trouble. Sometimes I hurt people with the things I say and it totally sucks. It's made me filter out a lot of what I say, but to Jenn (for some reason) I don't filter when I speak to her and as a result we go years without speaking sometimes. This past time we "made up" (I guess that's the best way to describe it) we promised each other to talk it out before we disconnect again. She's a valued friend and an awesome person; it sucks to not have her around.

Wow, for a post that's supposed to be about the subject it sure did turn into a navel-gazing introspection of a daunting reality... I'm Flawed.... in so many ways. ::Adjusts Tie Uncomfortably::


I took some liberty with the Black and White conversions this time. I haven't done that in a long time... I find that I take a different creative direction with black and white than I do color photos... The whites are white, but I drop the blacks through the floor while allowing midtones to remain. The result is what you see here. (I'll probably add some different photos in another post when I sum up the project...These are same ones I posted to FB, but I just loved them too much to pick a different set of 4 for each place...)

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

30-50 Project: Update 8

8 posts about this project already? Seriously? Apparently this project has been successful considering I expected roughly zero people to take me up on this thing. Very Cool.

Some of you might remember my next subject, Leah D'Andrea. I've worked with her on her costume design portfolio from last year. We've known each other for a long time, so when I was looking to expand what I do into a completely different direction she was an easy pick. I had been following her work for a long time and really admired it. There's a lot of parallels between fashioning pieces of cloth together and fashioning pieces of life together: They both require foresight, patience, resources, and ever more patience. There's always been something about designing and realizing clothing that has fascinated me.

In any case, she doesn't just design cool stuff; she wears them too. Since she's a costumer she has quite the  outgoing personality and is a natural when acting. Being herself is a little harder to do in front of the camera. I can't say I blame her since I get nervous too! It's a good nervous! If the roles were reversed and I was in a costume at some Con (I've never been to one as an adult... is that bad?) I would be incredibly nervous.

Without further ado...

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

30-50 Project: Update 7

Hello again! This week's post is brought to you by the number 7, and the letter D.

In this session, I shot my best friend, Devin. I hadn't intended to shoot any of my friends, but when I put the call out for 30-50 year-olds I had many volunteers, naturally. Devin and I go back about a decade; We went to UNC together. We were roommates for quite a while in college, and then for a few years after we got out of school.

One of Devin's passions is music. Not just music, but rather independent music that you might not have heard of. A few years ago he actually sold most of his CD's in favor of Vinyl Records. Yes, they still make vinyl. Tim Ferris, author of The 4-hour Work Week, said on an episode of CJLive that   "...the book from this point forward is going to have to be art." He was referencing that digital media is so popular from books to music that printed, tangible works are almost a dying breed....in other words, "art." I completely agree with this, and obviously Devin does as well. In fact, some of the vinyl records he owns actually have artwork etched into them. They truly are a work of art.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

30-50 Project: Update 6

After the turn of the New Year I started right where I left off with my project. The holidays are such a busy time that it was nice to take it easy for a week or so, but I was glad to get back to work.

My next subject was Yelena. She's from Russia: Born and bred. She actually came to the US for a a good will mission and fell in love with the place. Her husband is certainly glad she came here or they probably would never have met! It was quite a bit of fun shooting with Lena since she has a perspective on Americans that I wouldn't have known otherwise. She seemed really confident, but I could still tell that she was nervous. I've figured out that most people are't really used to having their photo made.... Not just "taken"... but Made. In any case, she did very well! I really look forward to working with her again.

I found myself shooting quite a bit in portrait orientation during this session. I'm usually more comfortable in landscape, but I really felt that portrait would be best for this. I'd also never shot at this location before, but the 85mm effectively nuked the background; It could have been shot anywhere.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

A Biography

I'm always fascinated to see a great video biography. I was the kid that loved the History Channel when we had it, and mourned it's loss when we had to cut back when I was little. In college, I made sure to get it again. Now that I'm a husband and father I feel a sense of entitlement towards getting it again, but I can't... So whenever I see a small biography video online or in a blog post somewhere I'm compelled to watch it.

I keep thinking that I should make small videos to add to my website... I'm not entirely sure why: I feel like I'd just be an idiot on film. But I want people to be able to connect with me and see who I am... Even if it means that they don't like what they see. I realize I don't have a personality that everyone likes and that's okay... but I think I'm getting tired of "letting my photos do the talking".... It feels like they're talking in Latin when everyone just knows English.... It really feels like no one knows what I'm talking about and maybe a video of me for a small biography would help. But I think it would only help if it really is ME talking... and not just talking about surface stuff... I need something personal to say.

I've tried just talking out loud and telling my stories, but it always feels like I'm tooting my own horn... Not the triumphant stories of grandeur, but more along the lines of how many times I've screwed things up and had to recovery from the mistake. I think everyone has a lot of those stories but for some reason we all hide them and we try to fake being perfect. None of us are perfect; We make mistakes daily. Is anyone interested in hearing my mistakes and how I have no clue what I'm doing? An artist statement with some "woe is me" sprinkled with "I got some cool ideas?"

In any case, here is the video that inspired this post.