Monday, December 16, 2013

Medium-Format 120 Test Roll #2, St. Bernard Parish

Looking ahead to the start of 2014, I am planning to start a newer project gallery devoted to 120 film images made with a 1960s twin-lens Mamiya given to me by my friend Jamie Derevere, from Athens, GA. (He had two of them, so he kindly donated one to me.) 35mm Fujichrome Positives will be archived, though still viewable and searchable. Shooting in square format with a 105mm lens has been a fun challenge because it's a way of seeing and composing that I'm not used to. These are a few shots from a test roll made in St. Bernard Parish one recent afternoon. The film is Kodak Portra 400. I wasn't trying for anything "serious" here; it's just a test of the camera and film, but it ain't bad so far. The resolution is excellent and I'm sure they'll make nice prints. Now I have to scheme on some project made for medium format. (Click pics for larger view.)

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Costa Rica

Just returned from two weeks in Costa Rica. Locations seen/photographed included San Jose; Turrialba; and Cartago Province. The Canon 5D was being an enormous pain in the ass on this trip, spitting out pink files in the LCD every 3-5 exposures; it has been sent in again for the second time in six weeks to Canon.
Somehow I managed to make enough shots to have a decent enough pile to whittle down between assignment photography coming up in Nashville and Atlanta. When processing is finished, there will be a Costa Rica portfolio under Projects on the regular website.

The biggest challenges for shooting in Costa Rica (aside from dealing with my malfunctioning 5D) came from the tropical wet-season weather, which was constantly changing in the Central Highlands, where I spent the entire trip. Days usually began sunny and cool; by noon it was hot and cloudy; by 3PM there was often rain for the rest of daylight hours, which end sharply at 6PM daily due to the nearness to the equator. It gets dark early, and fast, year-round. Skies were often cloudy, but when the sun came out it was always dramatic.

Pics coming soon! There will be many botanicals; landscapes of hills and valleys; jungles; and cityscapes from San Jose including inside the Teatro Nacional. Stay tuned.

Saturday, July 13, 2013

Moore, OK

Aftermath of a massive tornado which struck Moore, OK, May 20th. The path of destruction appeared to be maybe half a mile wide, cutting directly through a large neighborhood of what used to be mostly brick ranch houses. Like Waveland, MS, after Hurricane Katrina, not much was there except empty slabs and piles of debris. A few structures survived by some miracle, though they are totally uninhabitable at the moment.

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Monday, May 6, 2013

New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival 2013

A few new shots from this year's Jazz Fest are in the "Travel" portfolio on the regular website.
I got a much improved shot of Germaine Bazzle, in my opinion the best jazz singer in the city; I also
swapped out one fiddler for another - Amanda Shaw has been archived and replaced with Theresa Andersson this year. This will probably go down as the coldest Jazz Fest on record. We're used to having daily highs in the upper 80s, with the standard of having at least one Fest day above 90. This year, the warmest day was in the low 70s, with quite a few rainy days, and closing day recorded a high of only 66.

In the "Landscape" portfolio, I've added a handful of more recent photos using the Canon 5D. I've found
myself accumulating a new series of home exteriors in the Bywater and Faubourg Marigny neighborhoods.
I'm very attracted to the colors, and though I'm just shooting sides of houses and the painted siding, I find
myself looking at them for longer than I usually give a photo, so that says something, but I'm not sure what yet.

Monday, March 11, 2013

A Few Words About the Cheniere au Tigre Photos

Return visitors and Google searchers who come to this blog will notice that all the posts and photographs regarding Cheniere au Tigre are missing. I have removed all of them from the blog as well as my regular website, and now have designated the collection as private and available for view by appointment only. Results from Google image searches will eventually see the images fall off the web.

The reasons for doing this are related to my belief that Cheniere au Tigre is a very special place and important not only regarding Louisiana's history, but also important to the descendants of people who settled the place, who still live in Vermilion Parish. I noticed that since I posted the photographs, this blog was receiving tons of hits from people searching for images of Cheniere au Tigre, and there was evidence that the photos were being copied or downloaded, which I have posted many warnings against doing, yet people were doing it anyway. This is not only disrespectful to the memories and history of Cheniere au Tigre, which is not a state park or public land; it also ignores the fact that it took me years of planning, false starts, and abandoned attempts to reach the place, and I simply felt that leaving the photographs online for the whole world to have for free was cheapening their value and giving no acknowledgement of the effort that went into making them. My visit to Cheniere au Tigre was made only after securing permission of landowners and making arrangements with the National Audubon Society, who guided me there.

For these reasons, the photographs are now a designated private collection, available for viewing only by formal requests from publishers, organizations, art buyers, entities, or individuals seriously interested in their historic and artistic value. Families and descendants of former Cheniere au Tigre settlers are, of course, more than welcome and encouraged to contact me. The photographs were made as a means of preserving Cheniere au Tigre for posterity, and not meant to be internet fast-food, and that is why I have removed them.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Fellini Mardi Gras


Mardi Gras 2013

This year's carnival season was a lot of fun, but admittedly not great for photography. I made a lot of shots at Endymion, but the sky was a dull gray, light was low, and out of 120 exposures made, I think maybe a dozen or so will be passable, which I may post here or save for stock later.

As we approached today, Mardi Gras, the weather pundits seemed to be predicting doom, with thunderstorms galore and rained-out parades, but by late night on Lundi Gras they started backpedaling and saying there was a chance the rain would hold off until late afternoon. It turned out to be warm and very foggy, with about one minute of very light rain at around noon. The predicted deluge scared me into keeping the camera home, though I did make some very interesting cell phone videos of St. Anne revelers pouring the ashes of their loved ones into the Mississippi River in the thickest noon fog I have ever seen in New Orleans. If there is any way to get these clips up here, I will do it soon. It was a scene as moving as it was mysterious; and sadly I only had a cell phone to record it. "I feel like I'm in a Fellini film," I said to one of the St. Ann people.
"You are," was his instant reply.

Thursday, January 3, 2013


It's a new year - time for my annual planning period. There seems to be a lot cooking in the photo kitchen these days, though much of it is dependent on certain things following through.

A major publisher (which shall go unnamed for the moment) is giving serious consideration to The End of the Great River, and the latest word is that an up-or-down decision will be made on the project after their next editorial board meeting. My fingers are crossed and I ask anyone reading this to cross yours also.

I recently sent out a huge detailed proposal to the National Audubon Society regarding making several trips with their assistance to rural Vermilion Parish, the Paul J. Rainey Wildlife Refuge, and Cheniere au Tigre. The idea this time around is to photograph these areas in two separate seasons to show the contrast between the first stirrings of spring, and then the full lush growth of mid-summer -- the same approach used several years ago at the White Lake Wetlands Conservation Area, also in Vermilion Parish near Gueydan.

Mardi Gras is coming again, and as usual I'll be hitting the parade routes with camera in hand.

So with everything sent out, I'm now eagerly awaiting word back, hoping this will be a good year filled with lots of photo trips and things to show you.