One Week Left

One week left on my campaign for you to be a backer of the craziest project I've ever attempted.

I took this photograph in 1989. I plan to find the location and take this photograph again.

I took this photograph in 1989. I plan to find the location and take this photograph again.

CLICK HERE OR ON THE PHOTOGRAPH TO LAND ON THE CAMPAIGN

What will you see and learn about the project when you land on the campaign page?

  • A video of me informing you about the project and how it came about
  • A video where you will learn about Lydia "Sam" Rawlings and why she is so important to the project.
  • You can read the well thought-out words I wrote about the project.
  • Photographs I have taken.
  • A listing of the reward levels, starting at $1. Every reward has a tangible value.
  • When you are a backer, you will have access to the 'backers only' updates.

I am planning a lot of interaction between myself and the backers. My goal is to build a community. If you choose to back my project, I want you to experience every facet of the adventure with me. If you prefer to be more of a bystander within the project, that's okay too.

If I don't meet or exceed my goal by May 18, I will not receive anything - it's all or nothing. If you haven't experienced Kickstarter, here's a screenshot of what it looks like.

 
 

CLICK HERE OR ON THE PHOTOGRAPH TO LAND ON THE CAMPAIGN

And to get you in a Parisian state of mind...one of my favorite songs, by one of my favorite musicians who has influenced me ever since I started the Starart book, and especially on the creation of this project.

Après la Pluie

Yesterday was a weather day in SoCal. That means it's not just sunny as usual. There was a downpour that caused some brief flooding that was quickly gobbled up by the Los Angeles River. The LA River is not your normal river with a bed of rocks and grassy embankment. It's man-made of concrete.

I've shot a lot of pictures of the river over the years because of the light and shadow opportunities and the rare times it fills up. So, yesterday, after filming a short piece on my phone while walking Pumpkin (you can see that one HERE), I decided to get my 35mm camera and take some other photos.

When I went back to the river I shot it from the other direction and then shot this 15 second video. With thanks to the Photography Gods, I captured the coolest natural special effect followed by an errant tennis ball. Check it out...

And here's a still shot in the opposite direction of a wind-blown palm tree.

 
 

George Carlin

I've been thinking a lot about George Carlin recently. It was 7 years ago today that lost him. Wishing he was here to sort the world out. He always had it figured out. He was a genius comedian.

This photograph is in my book, Everybody I Shot Is Dead, in the dedication page for Warner Bros record rep Mark Wilson. George passed away six months after the book was released :(.

 
 

GEORGE CARLIN
5/12/37 - 6/22/08

Warning...the following video contains profanity and offensive humor...watch (and laugh) at your own risk.

 
 

Selfies - Old School

Now that all-about-me celebrity Kim K has published her coffee table selfies book "Selfish" (how appropriate) I figured I'd share a couple of my own 'old school' selfies.

Yes, selfies have existed ever since the camera (and other devices) were invented. Actually, it probably started in the Stone Age when cave men and women were drawing themselves on the walls of their caves. That was probably the easiest form of creating a selfie, although they may not have been an accurate visual representation.

And selfies before the iPhone and other such devices were invented actually required some level of talent. It's not all that easy to hold a manual camera at yourself and get a picture that's in focus and properly exposed...not to mention capturing the desired composition. More set-up was required. The photos below are selfies I set up and shot. I had to set up the shot (composition), the lighting, focus and exposure. Once that was done, I had to engage the time switch and run back into the frame, looking as natural as possible before the inevitable click.

 
 

It's even more fun when there is another person in the photo, especially when they unexpectedly grab your hands at the last second before the click.

 
 

My Black Friday

I had no interest in hitting the crowded stores to buy things I didn't need or want. Instead, I took a friend up on an invite to visit MoMA. Getting there is very easy for me...actually it's a walk in the park. This is what I saw as I was leaving Central Park.

While I waited in the crowded lobby (I was impressed to see so many people choosing art over commerce), I took this photo of The Brown Sisters display. Forty group portraits of the sisters - one each year beginning in 1975 - taken by Nicholas Nixon who is married to the eldest sister. All the photographs have been shot with an 8x10 camera on negative film and silver gelatin prints. I had scene this work online before but while I was checking them out in person I was thinking how lucky it has been that they are all still alive and able to get together once a year to pose for the portrait. Below is my interpretation of the wall of Nixon's photographs.

Forty years of Brown Sisters Portraits

Forty years of Brown Sisters Portraits

When my friends arrived we (including Pumpkin) went up a bunch of escalators to the 6th floor where the Matisse exhibit was housed. The photo on the left was the line of people waiting to be let in on their 'timed ticket'. Fortunately, my friends are members and had VIP passes so we walked right in. It was great to see so many Matisse originals in one place. The photo on the right is of me looking at the massive cut-out and Pumpkin hamming for the camera. There were no photos allowed in the exhibits so I have no idea who took the picture or how it ended up in my possession. 

These two were shot on iPhones.

These two were shot on iPhones.

 

After Matisse we dropped in to the Robert Gober exhibit. I had also seen his work online but that did not compare to the trippyness of being in multiple rooms of his original works. I cheated on the 'no photographs' with in the exhibit because I was inspired whilst I was in one of Gober's rooms and looked up - none of his works appear in this photograph.

By the time we left the museum it was already dark.  After a hot chocolate (it's cold here now) I began my walk home and ran into my first feel of the Christmas season...is it really that time already?

While waiting for a light to change, I was standing next to a homeless man with a push cart full of tattered flattened bags. It was cold out and I noticed he wasn't wearing a coat...just a sweatshirt. I asked him if he was cold and if he had a coat. He said he had a coat but he had given to another homeless guy. Then he said, "Maybe I should go and get it back."

A couple of days earlier, I had pulled a coat out of my closet and put it in a bag to drop off to a charity. It was in perfect condition, just too big for me. Without thinking about it, I told him I had a coat I could give him. We walked together for a couple of blocks, learning that he was born in New York and had been on the streets for seventeen years, then I had him wait nearby while I picked up the coat. He was grateful for the new coat and let me take a photo of him and it was nice to know who would be wearing my coat.

 
 

While this was a small gesture on my part, it reminded me that it truly is better to give than to receive.

HAPPY HOLIDAYS!