Tuesday, March 31, 2009

monochromatic portrait

Right now I am working on a project that explores the theme of monochromatic portraits. The first one I shot was of Jen Turner, as was posted earlier on my blog, and the second one I shot is of Carrie Gifford, the illustrator. After I made her portrait for the book, I had her put on all white, of which the only white she had was her wedding dress. The wedding dress ended up being perfect!! It has this somewhat gothic quality to it that I really enjoy, and the light that day was perfect for the shot. I like the dreamy, angelic quality to the images, right now I'm not sure what direction I'm going, I'm just having fun exploring the concept. This shoot, really sort of took a different turn than I expected, but that's what I really like about it.

Jeff Lipsky

Last night I had the opportunity to meet photographer Jeff Lipsky, in Michael Kockman's class. He came in to give a guest lecture and to talk about his work, as well as how he got his start. Jeff is a really lovely guy, and takes gorgeous photographs. He has a very distinct sensibility that comes through in his images, which convey a real sensitivity to his subjects. It is immediately apparent that he has a very gentle touch, and a sweet demeanor. Meeting him was no let down. I've been a fan of his work for a while, and he first really caught my eye, when I saw the cover of Los Angeles Times Magazine, with Ellen Page on the front cover. There are some celebrities who get f*$#@! over by having incredibly bad photographs taken of them. I think that can happen when someone thinks, oh they're good looking, whatever I shoot will look good. Anyhow, I digress, the photos of Ellen Page are really gorgeous, and she's one of those celebrities that I think often gets photographed horribly! When I saw what Jeff did with her, I couldn't believe how gorgeous they were.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Annenberg Space for Photography

For those of you who don't know, there is something really exciting happening in Los Angeles right now, regarding photography. On Friday March 27th, The Annenberg Space for Photography will be opening its doors to the public, and will be exhibiting the works of 11 Los Angeles Photographers including: Julius Shulman,Tim Street-Porter, Douglas Kirkland, Greg Gorman, Lauren Greenfield, Carolyn Cole, Lawrence Ho, Kirk McKoy,Genaro Molina, Catherine Opie, and John Baldessari. On their website, they are excited to state that they are the first photographic cultural destination in Los Angeles. I think its going to be a really great venue for seeing new work, and they will be having ongoing lectures by different photographers throughout the year.

Annenberg Space for Photography
2000 Avenue of the Stars
Los Angeles, CA 90067

Monday, March 23, 2009

Red Cap Cards

Yesterday I had the great pleasure of photographing my dear friend Carrie Gifford. She and her Husband Hal Mertz are the owners of the greeting card company, Red Cap Cards. They make incredible illustrated and letterpress greeting cards, and they are very lovely people. Carrie is going to be illustrating a children's book and needed a photo for the book jacket, so she asked me to do it, and they turned out really great.
This is a sample of what we did, and it's really fun because she is wearing the top she wore on her first date with Hal.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Brooke. The new new.

After being in school for so long, you have to remind yourself you stay fresh and always check yourself. It's not just being in school though, as an artist you always need to refresh yourself, and push to work in ways that are different than your usual regiment, which is what I am trying to do right now. I went over to my girlfriends house the other day, and just shot while leaving everything in its place. Instead of trying to control everything and rearrange the whole house, which I would normally do, I just walked in the door, saw her crazy outfit and the messy room, with the amazing color palette and shot. It was liberating and the results are beautiful. I really love these photos because they are out of my comfort zone, but I still think they are quite elegant, even amidst all of the chaos of the house.

Black Hearted Love

As I have mentioned before, I am mesmerized and inspired by PJ Harvey, she never ceases to amaze me!! She has just put out a new album with John Parish called, A Woman a Man Walked By, and it's perfect! I was just talking about how I wish her videos were as good as her music. I've checked out a lot of the music videos for her songs, and I always feel like they are not as good as they could be. Days after I said that, this video was released and it's gorgeous. The slow shots are mesmerizing, and haunting, and I'm so glad to see someone pushing for making great visuals to accompany her music. Lastly, I have been working on thinking up what my dream job would be, and it would be to shoot PJ, and to make a music video for her. That's what I really would love to do!
I'm just puttin' it out there.

Monday, March 16, 2009

Shoot at Art Center

So I have started the shooting process for Cecilia's movie debut. This image is a still from the hilarious shoot we did on Saturday on stage 1. Teresa looks so awesome!! Everyone dressed up, and it was too funny! By the way, this was shot on the Canon G10, and I love it!

Tuesday, March 10, 2009


Well, all of these posts are about great women, so here is one that I met when I was just a young lad, Erica Quitzow, musician/singer extraordinaire. I met Erica and her boyfriend Gary, in 1998. I had just moved to San Francisco with $500.00 to my name. That was one of the craziest things I have ever done, it was the height of the dot com era, and it was the most expensive time to move there ever! What was I thinking? Anyhow, through a service called "roommate referral" I met these lovely people, and they seriously changed the course of my life!! This is her song, and d.i.y. video. That's what was most inspiring about her when I first met her. I'd never met anyone who actually did everything themselves from scratch. Erica is always pushing herself, and guides her own creativity and path from every direction, and I don't know how she does it. It's very inspiring!

PJ is the King

I can't even say anything. She is amazing!!!
She has been my favorite for a long time, and sometimes, I just have to take it back old school to remember my roots.

Interview with Cecilia Gavia

I recently revisited an interview I did with one of my classmates, aka Postmodern Cat Lady, and wanted to share this with ya'll. I really love writing, and this was a fun piece. Also I am going to be directing a film that features her and her photography, which is why I am looking back at what I have worked on with her before. Unfortunately, I cannot direct anyone to photo link right now, because she is still working on her website, but this will give you some insight.

That girl is poison. Never trust a big butt and a smile. Poison.
She’s dangerous. Poison. Oh yeah. Poison. Bell Biv Devoe, now you
know you’re slick blow. That’s what band Cecilia Gavia’s photographs would be if she translated them into a sonic experience. A throw back to 90’s hip hop, gold grills and shiny props. Her inspirations range from LOL cats to craft culture. She’s an avid knitter and likes to incorporate pink and yellow into here repetoire of elements. She describes her work as funny, tacky and cute. Which would explain her love of Rosewood, a font that only few can pull of with the sophisticated mash up of gaudy, humorous, clever know how that Gavia imbibes her work with. Her work is a reflection of pop cultural mythologies and feminine archetypes while she is intereseted in constructing images that are at once confrontational and celebratory. The hyperreal becomes the point of interest in a world where suburbia meets the underbelly, but in a way that isn’t angry, that’s very important to Gavia. She leads her viewers to a place of the uncanny, rather than down the back alley of teen angst. She is interested in exploring themes that deal with the politically incorrect and in your face aspects of femininity. The work she makes is meticulously planned, and every detail is accounted for.
Essentially, she seeks to bring her audience a vision of the “other”, but not from a place like Diane Arbus, who she sees as having a more pessimisstic view of the world, Gavia wants to celebrate the giant in the room. She wants to celebrate eating the popsicle after it’s been dropped on the ground on a hot summer day and take your picture while loving all the grime the comes with eating a dirty treat.

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Vanity Fair Portraits

So I made it to the closing weekend of the Vanity Fair Portraits at LACMA. I had seen the show a while back, but I didn't get to spend as much time as I would have liked, so I went back today with my old friend Sandra. We were in there for probably 2 hours, looking carefully at every piece in the exhibit. Anyhow, there were a couple of pieces that really stuck with me from the show. One of the shots being of Douglas Fairbanks Jr. with Joan Crawford, by Nikolas Muray on Santa Monica beach. The photograph really made me start thinking about a narrative, and symbolism, and all the things you want a viewer to get into when looking at your work. Something that is interesting is that neither of them are looking at the camera, yet there is so much happening. Also, the image is very still, and again so much to think about. In the image, the horizon line creates so much of the narrative. It separates their gaze from each other, other than the fact that they are looking in opposite directions. His gaze breaks the horizon just above the water, while her face falls just below the horizon line. His body acts as the anchor, while she lies with a dreamy pose against his back. It's so interesting to think about what that means, as if he is the protector looking out over the sea, and she trusts him to stay in her own dreamy state. His pose is active, and hers is passive. It's really interesting that so much can happen in a single still pose. The second image that I found myself really wanting to look at was of Madonna, by Mario Testino. I just couldn't get over the color palette, and her glamorous, yet vulnerable gaze towards the lens.

Baby Elton

So I just bought the new 5d Mark II, and it is amazing!!!! My first shoot was of baby Elton, who is the cutest little baby who's hair grows almost in a little mohawk. His parents were kind enough to let me in and shoot with their family, even though I had only met them 2 days before. An old family friend has written a book about babies and communicating with them, so she asked me to shoot some little ones for her book. Lets cross our fingers that I can get something for the cover. Apparently Elton is too old for the cover, so I am still looking for a baby to shoot, under 6 months of age if anyone knows.