The very nature of photography is slicing time. Photographs are based on exposure to light, be it film or sensor and usually lasting only a fraction of a second. But in that unique moment, magic is made, never to be repeated, for seasons change, expressions are different, and nothing is static. It’s just a click, but one of endless boundaries and imagination, pausing time, and never to be captured again.
December 20, 2017, 7:30:35 pm - Old Quarters, Hanoi
One of my favorite streets in Vietnam is Nguyễn Thiện Thuật, located in Hanoi's Old Quarter. It's a place that transitions during its 20 hours day, from meat merchants at three in the morning to fruit and vegetable sellers in the evening. Every night, these women line up with their bicycles selling their goods to locals. It was the lighting, patterns, shadows, and especially the subject that caught my eye. The scene is very typical of how hard the Vietnamese work to support their families. What is not evident in the photo is the exponential changes occurring in and around the Old Quarter and throughout Vietnam. Much has changed in this wonderful country since my first trip in 1996.
I am not much of a minimalist. My preference is for busier subjects where one's eye can explore a host of sub-subjects. However, occasionally I am drawn to those things that have simple contradictions. In this image, I find the sharply jagged stick incongruent with the soft pastel water. The darker lower left corner suggests a more ominous scene just outside the frame.
December 5, 2015, 7:54:45 am - Death Valley
Light rapidly changes as the sun breaks over the eastern mountains of Death Valley. One has only a few minutes to capture the dramatic lighting that occurs at dusk and only for a few minutes. In no time, the dunes and its ripples have little to no texture as shown in this photo. High key offers another way to interpret the dunes. This image is a stairway to the unknown, possibly a sacred place.
March 16, 2018, 6:16:49 pm - San Miguel de Allende, Mexico
This lively and colorful colonial town comes to life at nightfall with processions, parades, and celebrations almost nightly. I wanted to capture the flow of people before the day's light ended, creating a sense of movement and a painterly quality to the image.
Created on February 23, 2019
When creating this piece I had two specific images in mind. Tres Cruces is one of my favorite images, taken in the '80s just outside Virginia City. They were painted on an old corrugated building. The background seems like thorny vines which accentuates this most iconic religious symbol. The blue provides a somber mood to this extraordinary dark event.
Much of my earlier influences came from Oliver GaglianiI who photographed extensively throughout Nevada. I would often find myself in this great state looking for abandoned, weathered, and forgotten buildings. This image spoke to me the second I saw it. It represents my view of this unusual place. We think of ghost towns and we think of Nevada. Austin was well underway of becoming another abandoned town when I took this image sometime in the '80s.
Created on February 20, 2019
This is another image from a recent and ongoing body of work. The post for February 13, 2019, is also part of the portfolio. I am drawn to aged walls, specifically their textures and colors and have for some time wanted to create my own world within and on those barriers. So far, most of the work has included graffiti. This image is a departure from the others in that another structure has been added, creating a surreal scene and offering more questions than answers. I am not sure where the work will take me. That is the best part of experimentation.
March 28, 2009, 11:42:02 - Amboy, California
Located in California's Mojave Desert, with a population of four, Amboy is a quirky little place, with a thriving gas station, a closed restaurant, and deserted motel. I asked and received permission to photograph the interior of the restaurant from the gun-toting owner who also ran the only gas station in the area. The photo sums up this lonely, near abandoned, outpost and its strange surroundings. The old pinball machine adds to the bizarre nature of the place.
December 7, 2014, 9:04:36 - Yosemite Valley
My background was mainly large format, black and white, nature photography. Yosemite was and still is one of my favorite places to capture nature. In recent years, I have moved toward street photography, but still appreciate landscapes. The end of fall is a wonderful time view Yosemite. Landscapes are more about aesthetics and composition than metaphors and deeper meaning. This image is simply about the beauty of the place.
November 15, 2013, 9:13:16 pm - San Francisco
Though it's only a little past nine in the evening, the scene feels more like well beyond midnight. The lone couple is engaged in a conversation that seems more serious than light adding to the somberness of the moment.
Created on February 13, 2019
Today is a playday, a day for exploring and experimentation. The image does not entirely fall within the category of "click". Some of my work are concepts using multiple images. This is a composite made up of a grunge background and a graffiti photo from my archives. By combining the two images, I wanted to create a surreal effect, the melding of graffiti into the wall.
May 24, 2006, 2:04:41 pm - Disney Concert Hall, L.A.
Frank Gehry's Walt Disney Concert Hall is LA's greatest architectural accomplishment. His style stands alone and breaks every tradition and concept in architecture. His buildings transform as the light of day, month, and year changes. There are so many visual perspectives of his design that one can isolate a piece and make it their own.
May 23, 2006, 9:24:46 am - Getty Museum, Los Angeles
It is always a challenge to take someone else's creation and carve out a piece to call your own. Architectural photography falls into this challenge. In question is the scale, context, and location of the image. There is ambiguity here - familiarity and confusion, a sense of place, but where. What is the object at the center of the picture, our we in a room, what is the purpose of this building?
November 23, 2013, 8:49:12 pm - China Town, San Francisco
China Town is unusually quiet on a Saturday night providing an opportunity to capture scenes otherwise impossible during the extremely busy daytime. Nighttime brings out more dramatic lighting. The mural of the Golden Gate Bridge and the utility box seem to connect as well as the door and Chinese writing. Each box and rectangle tell their individual stories, and together they convey a feeling of harmony.
May 15, 2006, 9:42:03 am - Bodie, California
This image pays homage to one of my most influential photographers, Oliver Gagliani. My favorite black and white photo is Oliver's White Door. Doors represent passage, mystery, ambivalence, choices, unknown, and a host of other metaphors. The weathered wood signifies the past, a time forgotten, a fading memory. The two together represent a place where time has been abandoned.
May 15, 2006, 9:06:55 am - Bodie, California
I wanted to capture the stark nature of Bodie and its unique light. When exploring this magnificent ghost town, you are captivated by the interior and exterior of the many buildings strewn over a large area that once saw over 2,000 building and nearly 10,000 people chasing gold. Located at 8,400 feet, Bodie's winters are brutally cold. You can't help imagine the hardship its residents experienced.
January 1, 2014, 3:27:50 am, Mission District, San Francisco
In the heart of San Francisco's Latino community and before daybreak on New Years Day, provided a great time to explore the quiet side of this vibrant and busy neighborhood. The laundromat in normally teeming with people going about their chores and the streets are eerily silent. The man in the mural is in harmony with the peaceful nature of the moment.
January 30, 2008, 4:35:36 pm - Stanford, California
I feel motion when I look at this image - always moving, always flowing, never static, almost like a crowd of people. The lighting suggests an element of hierarchy.
December 11, 2016, 4:32:45 pm - Las Vegas, Nevada
At first glance, there is confusion. But we see a door and one we are reluctant to enter. I am curious as to what lies behind it and the stories it conceals. Knowing too, this place is not in the best part of town makes it more uninviting. There is a hellish nature working here and possibly a sense of coulrophobia for those who suffer from it.
November 2, 2014, 6:43:07 pm - Mission District, San Francisco
Each year, San Francisco celebrates Dia de Los Muertos by holding a procession in the heart of the Mission District, a Hispanic neighborhood. I was drawn to the serious expression of the little girl who was reflecting the strange crowd marching before her. The ghost in the background helped with the story. It's the innocence, engulfed by the macabre scene that moves me.
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