Friday, August 31, 2007

Thursday, August 30, 2007

Circus poster

These are from yesterday's post. Click on each for a larger view.

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Sometimes you just get lucky

The restaurant across the street from my studio is doing an exterior renovation. Yesterday afternoon as I was arriving I saw they had removed the old siding and were getting ready to put up insulation and new siding. In the tear out they uncovered this poster for the Barnum and Baily circus. In researching, as best as I can tell, this would have been from between 1907 and 1919 after Ringling Brothers had purchased Barnum and Baily but before they merged into one "Greatest Show on Earth". The building was originally a grocery store and from the way the billboard is posted over the bare lumber it must have been under construction so the sign could hang for the short time before the circus came to town and was then covered by the finish siding. This would explain why the colors are fairly vivid after close to 100 years. Today what's left is covered once again.

I'll post a few more shots over the next few days.

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

A completely sort of, kind of, almost test

One is digital, one is film. I realize this is a ridiculous way to go about this but I wanted to attempt a comparison. Same subject, fairly similar light (the digital shot was taken almost a year ago)(Yes, I cropped to remove the distraction/distinction of the aspect ratio).
I ran into some software difficulties since it turns out that the SilverFast that came bundled with the scanner is not compatible with CS3 so will need to drop another $119 to upgrade.

Monday, August 27, 2007

Silverstein Photography Annual

With two exceptions (Phillip Pisciotta and Barret Oliver) I've tracked down the web sites of the ten photographers featured in the Silverstein Photography Annual opening September 8.

For me, I'm looking for restaurant recommendations. I haven't been to New York in 13 years and would love to hear what your current favorites are.

Sunday, August 26, 2007


I'm just sayin', from Eyeteeth. I think I'm in love.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

More on Truth and Lies

The discussion of the Truth of photographs continues with a blog entry by documentary filmmaker Errol Morris. Once again scroll through the comments to weigh the various points of discussion.

This in the same week as two posts here and here about Nina Berman's show at Jen Bekman. While my moral and political sympathies are completely with the anti-war group the fine line of propaganda wavers. The images are compelling and engrossing but while the reviews and statements make it clear she has no agenda other than capturing the fact of her subjects, the choices she made in creating the portraits; in the moment of capture and the edit of the work, are all editorial.

Is this photography's Big Muddy? Commercial truth. Documentary truth. Fashion truth. Journalistic truth. Artistic truth.

There is data and there are anecdotes. There is no Truth.

Nothing but rain

We have had rain and storms all week. When I say rain, I don't mean a little bit of rain. I mean more than 10 inches in less than a week rain. Driving home last night in yet another storm the road was alive with frogs jumping through my headlight beams. I mean biblical rain.
I shipped the rental Mamiya back to Calumet today. I picked up my negatives yesterday afternoon and hope to have a sample to post as soon as I figure out the scanning process. In the meantime file this one under There'll Always Be An England (scroll through the comments for the full effect).

Tuesday, August 21, 2007


Mel Trittin

It's August. Things seem to be in slow motion while I await the call that my film is processed, not that I'm complaining. Here are a few things to do while the summer comes to a close.

Tim Atherton of Musings is asking for help with an edit of his Traces: Alleyways and Spandrels project. The work is wonderful, jump in to his courageous (Are you nuts asking the internet to weigh in?)/cowardly (Make the edit. Own it. Love it.) request.

Jon Gittelson posted that he is included in the Hey, Hot Shot! summer showcase. Congratulations! While there I revisited his ongoing projects and found a phone number at the end of the If I Had a Girlfriend book. Give him a call.

Sunday, August 19, 2007

I am reminded

Oak Lawn, Illinois Greg Stimac

When I saw the top photograph from the always excellent vernacular site Big Happy Funhouse I was immediately reminded of the fascinating Mowing the Lawn series by Chicagrapher Greg Stimac. There's just something about a man and his lawn. Turf grass being the main crop of the suburban farmer.

Saturday, August 18, 2007

Slow Dancing

David Michelak has made a project filming dancers, "For the project, Michalek recorded each dancer for five seconds, while they performed their own unique forms of dance; however, because they were shot at 1,000 frames per second using the Phantom HD high-speed camera, Michalek was able to essentially turn the five-second routines into performances lasting many minutes. For each five-second routine, the Phantom HD recorded an astounding 20 gigabytes of data."
You can watch a piece of video from Slow Dancing here. Amazing how far technology has come since the zoopraxiscope.

Friday, August 17, 2007

Amazing the salesman

I made a road trip to the Calumet store in Chicago yesterday to try something. The salesman said I am the first person he has ever dealt with that is interested in going from digital to film. Arriving late to the ball, I essentially started with digtal cameras and have gone through 5 of them. I love my Canon 5D. It is a great digital SLR. But I keep looking at other work and thinking that digital still doesn't equate with film. I have rented the Mamiya 7 for a week, bought a pro pack of Fuji Pro 160S and a scanner I have been wanting for a long time and finally have room for.

I'll let you know what I think. Input anyone?

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Colleen Plumb

Carriage Horses Colleen Plumb

I am drawn to the discoveries in Coleen Plumb's Urban Nature series. I use the word discoveries deliberately because I have less a sense of pointing, and more an impression of being invited to see and consider.

Monday, August 13, 2007


These small (2 5/8" x 1 7/8") ceramic tabs, that come with a rubber "o" ring for hanging, would be a great addition to the zippers on camera bags or portfolios don't you think? Chicago artists Circa Ceramics makes them.

Saturday, August 11, 2007


It's August, it's the weekend, and everyone else is doing it (putting politics before art). Great posts from Edward Winkelman and Paul Schmelzer (followed up here and here).

Otherwise it's this post from Modern Art Obsession, and that was before Friday's near meltdown.

Have a nice weekend.

Friday, August 10, 2007


or size matters.

"The photograph is a magnificent tribute to a historic turning point in Orange County history as well as a statement about the evolution of the photographic medium, hand versus mechanical/technological processes, and the importance of “vision machines” to the advancement of culture. "

I'm not sure I know quite what to say. Vision machines?

Thursday, August 9, 2007

Third View

This one is especially for my sister the historic archeologist and lover of the West. Since she is currently suffering through the heat wave ("'s hotter than Satan's crotch after a racquetball tournament." Amy Stein ) in Southern Kentucky I thought she would particularly enjoy these.

Thanks to Kevin Miyazaki who posted about Mark Klett and the Third View Project about a month ago.

Tuesday, August 7, 2007


Eyeteeth posted this about a week ago and it is now available here. If I think about ordering a pile can they be conceptual Christmas presents?

Monday, August 6, 2007

O-ho the Wells Fargo Wagon is a-comin' down the street,

The UPS Man made me happy today. Andrew Miksys' Baxt, Todd Hido's House Hunting, Kay Lynn Deveney's Day to Day Life of Albert Hastings, and Julian Montague's Stray Shopping Carts were all in the box. I love the smell and feel of new books.
Recently I was with two Art School photography instructors who were commenting that many of their students eschew looking at Others (capitol O) work. They express a fear of being unduly influenced. Influence me. Inspire me. Humble me.

Sunday, August 5, 2007

Friday, August 3, 2007

Silverstein Photography Annual

Crude 4 Sonja Thomsen

I have made my plane and hotel reservations for the opening of the Silverstein Photography Annual, around the corner on September 8. The list of 10 curators and the 10 photographers they've nominated is an exciting and wide reaching blend. From their press release:

Silverstein Photography is pleased to announce the first Silverstein Photography Annual (SPA). This year’s exhibition features a selection of works by ten emerging photographers, each having been nominated by a member of the curatorial community representing institutions throughout the United States. Selected by Nathan Lyons, Curatorial Advisor to the Gallery, each nominator has written a short introductory statement on their choice, which will be displayed during the exhibition.
“We are constantly seeking ways to enhance our representation of photography, offering a greater perspective on the past, present and future of the medium. SPA gives us this opportunity - to continue to embrace new and important ideas, to reach out to the art community around the world, and to welcome those who deserve to be seen and heard but who might not have had the chance. We are grateful to be in a position to make such a commitment.” Bruce Silverstein

I am thrilled for my friend/colleague/teacher Sonja Thomsen who will be showing work from her Crude series. The exhibition runs through October 13.

Thursday, August 2, 2007


Parking Lot #5 George LeChat

I have been enjoying the ongoing Yosemite series that George LeChat has been posting at Hiding in Plain Sight since last October. A refreshing change of "scenic".

Wednesday, August 1, 2007

Lying to the viewer

Dog, Accidentally Kansas Lori Nix

Thanks to Gallery Hopper for this post featuring a studio visit with Lori Nix. With all of the discussion of truth and reality surrounding photographs I find it's useful (and in her case delightful) to take the occasional hard left turn.