Naturally, guy was all smiles. Beer in one hand, cigarette in the other. America.
I’d like to thank Jeff Hutchens for allowing me to tag along with him up to NYC last week on a multi-day shoot. The two blown tires may have slowed us down (boom), but we got there late Monday night and were shooting throughout the week. In addition to being a highly accomplished documentary photographer, Jeff specializes in stylized reportage portraits and most recently, documentary HD video. I learned a great deal by watching him work and from our car-ride and over-coffee conversations. I’d bounce his light any day.
My trip wouldn’t have been possible without my good friends, Kristin Larson and Stacy Federer, who found time and space for me in their busy work-week schedules. Lots of wine, good food and trips down memory lane…I couldn’t be more thankful to you both.
In the space between, I got to know New York City. The last splash of brandy and vermouth went down easy and I stepped back out into the cold and lit a cigarette, watching the smoke disappear into the night air. I walked her streets, rode her trains, ate her food and have had trouble sleeping ever since. I can’t seem to get her out of my mind…I’m crushing on NYC.
Yes, easily the most racist blog post ever…but before I move on, let me clarify. “Crushing blacks” is a term used in the photography world when you expose an image so that the “blacks” (darkest parts of your image) are “lost” – completely black without detail. And if you don’t succeed, crush ’em in post. I like this. Always have.
A few weeks back, the class I’m assistant teaching field tripped to the National Arboretum here in DC. I crushed some blacks. I tried to compose. I had fun.
Welp, see ya later…
The kids are in Composition and Design this week with Robert Severi, an accomplished commercial photographer in the District and all around cool fella. Yesterday we set them loose on the mall with the only assignment being to come back at the end of the day with 10 images. That’s the kind of freedom that a professional photographer, as Bob would tell you, dreams of. Bob was telling me about two assignments he had in the same week a few years ago. Early in the week, he had to shoot Magic Johnson for Pepsi and then a few days later he had to take some abstract architectural images of a building for that building’s website. In the first assignment, he had to deal with Pepsi’s Art Director, handlers, assistants, lighting setups, a celebrity, etc. In the other assignment, it was just his camera and creativity.
It’s a great assignment, albeit a difficult one, trying to find the interesting in the everyday…I tried to focus on architecture.