On Distance and Photography

I wrote briefly on Instagram about distance and photography. The post was inspired by a passage in Alex and Rebecca Norris Webb’s new book, “On Street Photography and the Poetic Image” that resonated with me. In it, Alex Webb mentions the mental shift he experienced when shooting street photos in Florida – a place where people don’t often walk, but always drive. He talks about the separation from the subject by a simple car door, and how it was also a psychological separation for him. While a brief passage, his writing made me think more deeply about my “street” process now that I’m almost always separated from my subjects by distance, or glass. The rest of the book, by its ‘poetic’ nature, reminds me of an art professor I once had. He had a knack for saying everything and nothing at the same time. Every sentence was a kiss from God until he walked away. That’s when you realized you had no idea what the hell he was talking about. I agonized in confusion all semester over his fortune-cookie philosophies. Still, I believed that someday, his advice would make sense. And it did, several years later. I was just too […]

Hello March + April Snapshots

“A Diary of Favorite Shots” — With “Hello Snapshots” I usually write in an upbeat tone, and look at the month as one step in the greater journey. But I’m incredibly frustrated with March and April. If I could make an audible “ROAR” here, I probably would. With this batch of shots from Hello March + April, my work gradually took on a darker tone. I don’t think it’s permanent, I think the artist part of me was venting. I think what I really wanted to come through in some of these was that no one “owns” me, or my work. And no one can control me with promises, or new gear. Those things are fun, but they don’t make or break me as an artist (I can take pictures with an iPhone for God’s sake!), and I don’t kid myself into thinking they do. Welcome, May. I’m gearing up for you.

Hello Jan + Feb Snapshots

“A Diary of Favorite Shots” — In January, I looked for additional photography work. By February, I found some, and my personal photography updates slowed down. I’m now training in a new photography-related job, waiting (and excited) to see how things work out. Hello Jan + Feb introduces more shots from my personal work in the last two months, and includes some new Hipstamatic snapshots. A handful of others accompanied recent articles in the South Reporter, which will be featured on the “Articles” page soon.

Hello December Snapshots

“A Diary of Favorite Shots” — December ushered in television and eating. With part of my work put on hold due to holiday breaks, I dug up some of the lost gems of recent photo shoots, and looked into retooling my social media (again). I’m constantly on-and-off with Instagram (due to a like/hate relationship), but have finally learned how my tags are working (or not working). I still have more to learn, but it’s getting better. My snapshots on Flickr continues to grow in leaps. The platform is working out the best for my work and late-night post schedule. I also like the exchange I’m building with photographers I admire. Facebook, however, continues to be, by far, my worst social media, and I haven’t figured out how to grow it yet. But I can’t really dwell on it right now. Now, with the holidays behind us, I’m dwelling on article writing, scheduling shoots, and job hunting. I made a huge update to A Sweet Hello that reflects this. I’m actually really proud of this update. It’s the most focused one yet, and the template structure (the same template I’ve had since late 2012) gives me the flexibility to move things […]

Hello November Snapshots

“A Diary of Favorite Shots” — Not much can be said about November. This month I began interviewing locals for the Museum’s newspaper articles, and I branched out by taking day trips out of town.. which is where many of these “November” snapshots originated. Until this point, I haven’t had enough driving experience to do this, so it was a big step for me to take these mini-road trips around the South. Other projects this month were put on hold when I picked up seasonal work, and following that, everything slowed down for the impending holiday season. These last two months of the year are, almost always, the months when I feel the most anxious to work. It becomes a struggle to shoot through the dreary weather, and I have to create projects that won’t rely as much on other people’s availability during the holidays. Projects don’t always line up at this time, and I have to remember it’s sometimes better to huddle down and do whatever is readily available to do. Going into December, I’m expecting my plans to take a slight detour, but there is plenty to look forward to, and several people I’m excited to interview.

Hello October Snapshots

“A Diary of Favorite Shots” — October was a month of development. I had been investigating publications for my work, and I learned that the Marshall County Historical Museum needed help producing weekly articles for the South Reporter newspaper. The work offered experience in storytelling, and a foot in the field of journalism. I took on the project. In November, I’m looking forward to interviewing locals, and highlighting historical artifacts treasured by the community. I’ve also decided, through trial and error, to revert back to my former Instagram habits, and place an emphasis on street photography. Though there isn’t the number of people walking around in a small town like there is in a city, I think a lot could be communicated, and the subject will pair well with the niche I’m just beginning to carve.

Hello September Snapshots

“A Diary of Favorite Shots” — My struggle to find subject matter in Mississippi continued into September, and I pushed myself to be proactive. I used to shoot wherever I landed, with whatever happened around me, but with little happening here, I didn’t have the luxury of passivity. I used anything, and everything, as an excuse to shoot. Often, I came home frustrated. Other times, I frustrated the people around me with my restlessness. Finally, two weeks into the month, I felt like I was falling into a style that suited the south. I could put images next to each other, and they made sense in a group. I shot mostly still lifes, texture, and grit. When I found a common thread, I decided to give my iPhone a break, and I started carrying my DSLR everywhere. I wanted to think about archiving my work, printing it, and framing it. To do that, I needed to shoot larger files. “Hello September” brings together some of my favorite shots from ProCamera for the iPhone 4S, plus shots taken with my Canon 7D. All were edited with Lightroom. I still don’t have a groove for shooting. But I found some ideas for […]

Hello August Snapshots

“A Diary of Favorite iPhone Shots” — In Mississippi I realized that taking pictures is a different experience than the Bay Area, and I worked to find a “voice” in the slower paced environment. As much as I love Hipstamatic for my on-the-go pictures, I decided to try shooting with ProCamera (also for iPhone) and process my shots with Snapseed to expand my options. I like the results so far, though I’m still finding my way. During August my Instagram and Flickr streams featured shots from both Hipstamatic and ProCamera, but, for the purpose of consistency, I’m going to keep this month’s “Hello” post a short one and only feature my Hipstamatic shots. “Hello August” features Hipstamatic shots taken just before leaving San Francisco, additional shots from the road trip, and shots from Mississippi.

Hello Road Trip Snapshots

“Favorite iPhone Shots From the Road” — In the spirit of my monthly Hipstamatic shots, here’s a small collection of road trip snapshots from my cross-country trip to Mississippi from San Francisco. From here forward, at least for the next few months or so, I’ll be located and shooting in the southern states.

Hello July Snapshots

“A Diary of Favorite iPhone Shots” — Pinole was a beautiful, but temporary haven. In entering July, I came to the decision that I needed to make a much larger move to get to where I want to be. July presents some of my last iphone photos from the Bay Area. At least for now. Hello July.