Pictures have me in a pretty euphoric place right now...

...well maybe not these photos, but making photos is making me happy.

Something about taking pictures right now is sparking a different kind of curiosity in me and it's making this all a different kind of fun. Maybe fun isn't the right word. But I feel like my pictures are taking me on a visual journey that I haven't been on before. Maybe I'm taking a step back or maybe I'm making progress I don't know. I need some feedback!

I left the house early today and was gone until well after the sun went down. Lots of stuff to do around town. And I wanted to take Oscar to the beach for a few hours so I made sure we went and had fun first so that I knew he had a good day too.

we saw a fisherman.

and black sand.

we played catch.

and oscar was pooped after a few hours.

I had a gig today to shoot a "vertical portrait" for the Duke University Towerview magazine. The gal they interviewed is a fashion blogger in SF. I always have a tough time with portraits and the time of day to meet wasn't helping my hopes for good light. Portraits are rough. Really tough to do. Ahh the creative freedom is overwhelming for the photojournalist!! I had fun though. Girl really wanted to hold that magazine though. Why am I so anti-prop but I always give in to subjects requests?



The last diptych from Portland. The top photo was taken by Michael Rubenstein at Bruce Ely's on the first night of Geekfest. (l to right) Leah Nash, John White, me, Ramin Rahimian. In the top picture I'm shooting the bottom picture. The diptych fun just never ends.


More Financial District

I've really been enjoying photographing this neighborhood. Sean is right though, I need to move past this artsy stuff and get more story telling images from the area. I have ideas of what I want to do and places that I know I should visit, but I've been having too much fun playing with light and lines in this very sterile environment. It's like a bunch of Crackberry zombies wandering the streets and not acknowledging one another. Sean said I've been shooting this in a sophisticated way. I'm not sure if that is me pushing myself out of my comfort zone or what, but I guess it's working for this neighborhood. Chiaroscuro was also a word that hung on a few photos.

I worked the Giants v. Yankees games this weekend with Heinz Kluetmeier. It was a lot of fun. Heinz is a really funny guy and was really helpful in teaching me about shooting sports and even instilled a few life lessons in me. So, hooray for making money while shooting and assisting. Nothing beats a day when you can use your camera and pay some bills...or in my case also a few parking tickets.



craig ferguson stayed in pleasanton and then did a monologue about it. HYSTERICAL. especially if you are from pleasanton like i am!! ohhhhh p-town.

check this out

this is a trailer for a documentary that my childhood friend janelle smith is working on. it explores the lives of street kids in several countries. she's traveled to brazil, costa rica, and in november she's going to thailand. i'd love to join her in thailand.


and it's settled. we are all going to mexico for our student-run workshop. i don't think it has totally sunk in yet, but i'm already stoked.

last night i had a dream in pictures. and it was the first dream that i could ever remember that had daylight in it. i was back home, standing in a driveway that had been put in where the tree between our house and the rowe's was cut down. people were climbing all over my car and dancing and running around the street. dave rowe came out of the house and i told him that i heard jared was sick again. i told him i was sorry. there was this incredibly warm light, almost amber. i started photographing him and everyone else running around us. i could even see the red square moving around the sensor. this is the first dream that i remember where i was taking pictures. other times i've had cameras with me, but this was the first time i used it.

i'm really digging my neighborhood

so every semester in photo III we shoot cultures in san francisco. this usually means that we are all forced to go out and shoot stereotypes that we moan and groan about and every friggen person comes back with the same shit every year. it's boring. especially if you've taken the class three times like me and everyone else in the department has.

but this semester is different. sean rocks. this class is one of the best photo classes i've taken at state. it's right up there with acey's lighting class. it's rad. sean is keeping us on task and pushing us to make better pictures. he's not putting up with any bullshit and tells people when they need to make stronger images which is something that most of the professors at state don't do. he knows that we are capable of creating beautiful and telling pictures, and he's helping us to hone our story telling abilities.

brian and darcy and i went out for dinner after class tonight and we were talking a little about how none of us know how to tell stories. for a photojournalist, a story is one of the most difficult things to achieve, and we don't feel that we were every really given the best advice on how to shoot stories. yeah, we've seen great work and seen successful stories by other photographers, but it's not very often that you see a true photo story come out of our department unless your name ends in a mott or a maxon. anyways, we were all really excited because we feel like we are already getting more of how to tell a story from sean then we've gotten out of our entire careers at state.

pretty rad.

anyways, here's some pictures from my neighborhood. i've got the financial district this time around. i've done russian and chinese cultures, but i was drawn to this neighborhood when i saw it on the list in class. i thought it would be an interesting challenge to illustrate a place that basically lacks a community and really only comes alive during daytime hours. i've got some ideas for diptychs to show the contrast between the times of day or even days of the week.

i love how everything on the sidewalk seems so miniature compared to everything around it. people are totally dwarfed by their surroundings. there's a lot of money and power around there and i feel like the buildings definitely mirror that. i've been trying to capture that.

whooooa, a vert!


everyone dances at weddings

michelle and nelson's wedding was yesterday at the crystal ballroom. it was awesome. michelle looked gorgeous in her red dress. grandpa out-danced all of us. he was a great lead and i had so much fun dancing with him. it was rad to visit with david. he's really enjoying school in eugene and it's fun to have another journalism major in the family. we talked a lot about how michelle, jeff, greg and i used to torture him and brianne when we were all kids. we blamed jeff for our fears about forests and big empty barns. katie and i had a room at the ace hotel. i ended up going to wilsonville for the night after we got booted from the crystal ballroom, so i didn't get to spend the night there. but it's a totally rad hotel and i definitely recommend it. i met travis murray's twin. spitting image, i kid you not. his twin didn't care but i thought it was hysterical. i drank crappy beer with jeff and brianne and their friends until the sun came up. i had a blast. awesome wedding. loved hanging out with all my northwest family and extended family. it was rad. i don't want to leave.

i'm leaving my heart in portland.

i love coming from an italian family. we always have such good food. and then we sit around the table forever after we're done eating telling stories.

katie and i thought it would be funny to jump on the beds at the ace hotel.

it looked fun when katie did it, so i wanted to try. it wasn't as fun as it looked because the bed wasn't very cushy.

there's a bunch of books and records that you can help yourself to in the lobby at the ace hotel. katie checked out the tunes while we were waiting for coffee from stumptown next door.


i'm still reeling from PDX

and i'm already back up north. i think i've been to portland four times this year. i can't wait to move up here.

here's some pictures from this week, post-geekfest. i'm trying my damnedest to keep my state of mind to that of what it was when i shot last weekend. i know, i need more content. but damn if i'm not having fun exploring more with my camera. i wish i had shot like this years ago.

why don't we take pictures for ourselves everyday? it's always assignments, events, crappy mug shots, but what ever happened to just making pretty pictures? why aren't we telling ourselves to shoot for ourselves all the time rather than let the doom and gloom that is many newsrooms hang over our heads and cloud our creativity??

be creative. explore. and don't go anywhere without a camera.

brian ruins a cool shot by standing in the only other pocket of light!! talk about lightstalker (har har har)

this group of irish guys came running up to me yelling WE'RE IRISH, WE'RE IRISH. i was like okay cool. they asked to take a picture with me, so i held out my camera and smoooooch, they kissed me. gotta love the irish. no shame in kissing a stranger with a camera i guess.

i took oscar out to p-town with me the other day so that he could run around the backyard and the park across the street. he ate a lot of grass, rolled around in smelly things and ran around a bunch. he was pooped.

ariel loves oscar too. and oscar loves ariel. he was so happy!!

dave and i spent the entire day yesterday shopping and drinking our way through the city. i had to get shoes for the wedding this weekend and dave was a total trooper and scoured downtown for shoes with me. by the time we got to rite aid back home (to buy more liqor), i think we were both a little toasted and it made shopping for shoes at the drug store fun. this is dave showing me how cool the knock-off croqs are.

oh yeah, and i'm in portland... AGAIN. yay! here's some pics from today.

i kept falling asleep and then waking up to these cool views.

katie (my totally awesome mom) picked me up at the airport and then we went to lunch.

my grandparents are incredibly talented when it comes to architecture and style. my grandpa is a carpenter and my grandma is an artist and a painter. they have a gorgeous house with all these totally awesome little details. lots of handmade furniture and art around the house that they have made. this is in their bathroom. hands down the most gorgeous bathroom i've ever gone pee in.