Jun
03

Platon

If you live in the world of portrait photography you undoubtedly know the name Platon.  He’s captured some of the most powerful and famous people in the world over the last decade plus – people like Bill Clinton, Bono, Barack Obama and the list goes on.  He even set up outside the United Nations and grabbed portraits of the world’s leaders last year.  Watch an interesting interview with him via British TV:

I love the part at the end where he describes how he’s shifting his focus to those without power.  I very much look forward to how he’ll frame this new direction.

03-June-2010 | Photo News & Issues

May
24

Give Your Gift

I firmly believe that each of us are talented in our own special ways.  It may be the gift of an artists touch or the ability to carry a tune or an eye for composition. I also believe that each of us should share our talents in ways that help out others.  Recently, I had the privilege of sharing my photographic talents with a special group of young ladies in the Annapolis area.

In the spirit of the project created last year called Help Portrait, myself and two good (and talented) friends Guy Stephens and Matt Rath connected with a group called the Eastport Girls Club.  First, a bit about the Girls Club – they’re a grassroots mentoring program for girls in grades 5-12 who are living in public housing communities in Annapolis, MD.  Their mission statement reads:

To provide young women facing challenging issues within our community with enriching experiences and mentoring relationships that promote self-awareness, the attainment of individual goals, respect towards self and others, and a willingness to explore and serve the world around them.

Our goal with the project was simple – to shoot portraits of each of the girls, get them printed, framed and have them ready to present to their Mothers / Grandmothers / Guardians for Mother’s Day.  More than that, it was to make each girl feel as special and beautiful as they really are for a day.  This video that Matt produced from the shoot explains the effort much better than I can in words:

So, in February we scheduled the shoot and showed up with a heaping pile of lighting equipment, a bit of a simple plan and a lot of hope for a fun time. I must admit that I went into the shoot with some trepidation, not knowing how a group of 5th to 9th graders would react to getting their photos taken by a couple of strangers. Any fears I had were quickly erased by the smiles and laughs of each of these special young ladies. Before long, we had them mugging for the camera like a bunch of seasoned models.

In early April, I had the young ladies pick the photos they liked and had them printed and framed.  Shortly after at a Mother’s Day dinner, each girl presented their framed photo to their loved one. 

Smiles equal success in my book. Find your special talent and share it with others. It benefits everyone involved.

24-May-2010 | Photo News & IssuesPhoto Shoots | 0

Apr
05

America in Color

I don’t know about you, but when I think about America in the 40’s I automatically see black and white images in my head. I guess it’s a function of seeing too many old black and white movies and obviously not being alive during this incredibly tough period in our history.  Courtesy of the Denver Post, you can now see a fantastic collection of photos of the effects of the Depression on America‚Äôs rural and small town populations.

The past

This one of an old grocery store in Lincoln, Nebraska is my favorite. Enjoy the rest. Just goes to show you that great photos are great photos, no matter when they were taken or what technique or technology was applied.

05-April-2010 | Photo News & Issues

Mar
12

Committed

Photo by Greg du Toit

Ever think you’re a committed photographer, dedicated to your craft? You wake up in the wee hours of the morning, trek your heavy equipment out to remote locations, survive a mosquito bite or two, a cold breeze or three. Well, you may change your tune about your commitment when you read this story. Wildlife photographer Greg du Toit has set the bar, well, beyond the clouds.

While taking photos of lions in Kenya’s Rift Valley, he actually submerged himself in a watering hole for three months. You read that correctly. Three hours a day, seven days a week for THREE months. He got incredible images of lions, warthogs and more…..and a bunch of diseases that nearly killed him. Committed, yes. And maybe in many senses of the word.

12-March-2010 | Photo News & Issues