It's been a while since I've done a Man + Beast shoot and it felt good to get back into it. In case your forgot, this is my pet project (literally). Pets are often overlooked in photographed but stand as some of the most important living things in many people's lives. That definitely stands true for Souvannah and Winston. Winston is a new love in Souvannah's life and the first toy-sized dog she's had but she's had dogs before, only larger. Fortunately, despite Winston's small size, he does not lack in spunk and love. These two spend just about every minute together and get each other through the day.
The Dee Dees are a Ramones tribute band, obviously. I had so much photographing them over at Darrell's Tavern, a bar they frequent. The Ramones have been one of my most favorite bands for as long as I can remember so it was fun to work with these ladies. I only got a sneak peak of their performance, but from what I can tell, they pretty much kill. So next time they play we all best get out booty on over and rock out with them, 1970's punk style, baby.
I had the honor of photographing Helado Negro for KEXP this week, an important artist to follow right now. Helado Negro is a music and performance project created by Roberto Carlos Lange, an artist based in Brooklyn. In a time of political uproar, his work explores what it means to be a musician, artist, and Latin American. It's about self-identity. His music and shows are hauntingly beautiful and I recommend investing some time in him. Here are a few of the photographs I created as well as a video of his.
Things are getting crazier by the minute in the world. While it’s scary, it’s also exciting. It’s a time for change. We’re making history right now and we’re all a part of it wether we like it or not. This last year I’ve thought a lot about my place in all of it. I’ve never been one to take action or speak up when it comes to politics. I’ve always been more of an observer (hence the camera). Watching the way our world is changing now, I am reminded of other revolutionary times, the strength of the people then and the way they are remembered now. Of course my thoughts immediately turn to the art and especially the photography during those times.
Robert Frank travelled across America photographing the country for what it was, full of people trying to live their lives the best they could. Sean O’Hagan said his work "changed the nature of photography, what it could say and how it could say it.” Margaret Bourke-White’s most famous image showed a line full of black flood victims in front of an advertisement showing a car full of white people that read “World’s highest standard of living. There’s no way like the American way.” The irony was not lost. She was also the first female war correspondent and famously captured horrifying images of concentration camps. Dorothea Lange photographed the great depression, people living in poverty, the unemployed and the homeless. Famous for her image of the migrant mother and her children, she captured the lost hope felt by her subjects. Because of her images, the government rushed aid to those camps. Going even further back, Matthew Brady was the first to ever photograph war. His scenes of the Civil War brought the reality of it to the people at home. Edward S. Curtis spent his career documenting the Native Americans in the early 1900’s. He also recorded the music, tribal lore and history. His work is one of the few if not only records we have of their people from that time.
Time and time again photographers have helped change and shape the world. They’ve captured the way people live and shared it with people who otherwise would never know. They brought awareness. They showed the truth and recorded history. The world and our knowledge of it would not be what it is if it were not for photographers. While incredibility intimidating, I also find this very inspiring. Honesty has always been my first priority in my work. The nature of this work has drastically changed during my lifetime but it is still important. In this political climate I am making it my personal goal to show the truth in my work, to push myself harder to find the things that are important to myself and others and document them. I’m putting out a call to other photographers and artists to do the same. Challenge yourself. Get out there and use your art as a platform. It is the honor and the duty of an artist to do so.
Adam Way is a cool dude, photographer, musician and runs Way & Co., a production and promotion team. They're always putting on super cool shows and are a huge part of the local DIY and independent scene in Seattle. Skyler Ford, one of Adam's oldest friends crashed our shoot as well. Friends are always welcome in my photoshoots. The more the merrier. Thanks to the both of them for indulging me in some lighting experiments.
Orion is a strange painter. He is a stranger.
Madeline took up the violin when she was a kid and while she pursued a degree in a business, she still kept it up. She enjoys many creative fields including photography and plans to use her business and creative knowledge to continue in her career but she still plays and performs as a violinist on the side and plans to keep it up. She fiddled around during out photoshoot (pun intended) and while I'm no expert, she was very good. I'm always very impressed by people who are so talented at so many things. Here I am just turning on lights and pressing buttons and can't seem to think about anything else long enough to be good at it...
I did some product work for a local Seattle company a few weeks ago. Herbivore Botanicals makes high end, all natural and beautiful body products. They handed me some of their best selling products and said "Do whatever you want!" While it can be a little intimidating and terrifying when clients do that, it's also a lot of fun and good challenge for me. I love when I get a chance to try my hand at a little art directing.
One of my favorites played Neumos last week. It's been a while since I've shot a show but I couldn't resist Nick Waterhouse, a master of vintage psych/soul sounds. I had seen him before but not with my camera. His soulful sounds and sultry stage presence needed to be visually captured. He has a new record out, Never Twice. It's his third album and some say it's his greatest. He may be one that can do no wrong by me.
Ani is a fashion designer. She recently moved to Seattle to build her career. She loves working with denim and recycled materials. Her most current project is turing people's old tents into fashionable outwear. They're super cool. Y'all should check out her work here.