April 26, 2006


So I'm sitting at my computer doing some work just after returning from the park with my daughter. Her mom got her some glasses that only function as cuteness. She had them waiting at her desk as she starts at some school work. Just as anyone needing to wear glasses while studying, she puts them on and gets going. I thought she looked so damn cute, I had to grab my camera and photograph her.

On a technical note, I shot this at 1600 iso at f:2 @ a 1/20 sec. I think I have just become a lot less afraid of shooting at high iso's.

April 25, 2006


You know what you like in music, but would love to know more artists that have that same "aura", stylistically. Pandora is a site where you can type in an Artist's name or the name of a song, hit the button and it will start playing music that is similar in style that you might like as well. If there is a song you don't like, your just a click away to moving on to another recommendation. I think I'm hooked!

This is one of the more useful sites I've discovered in a very long time!

April 24, 2006

North Light...

I've been facinated by photographs that Irving Penn has done in various Natural light studios through out his career. I was always open to the opportunity to be able to shoot in a day light studio, but those opportunities have come far and few between. However now, I do have the the ability to not only shoot in natural light, but to be more concise, North Light. Not a large space by any means, no atelier with a skylight sitting atop a roof, but a nice size area with a huge window pointing to the promissed light. After seeing what I shot today, I'm so excited to bring in more subjects and see what comes out of this discovery...

April 19, 2006


At the time, she was still mayor of the city of Portland. Her successor had all ready been voted in as she decided to step down. I was hired by a regional business magazine to photograph her both during an interview, then a more formal portrait for an upcoming issue. As the last few month at her post was arriving, she was asked by the magazine questions of what she has done for the city of Portland and what she thought her legacy to the city was.

Small and frail, she has the spirit of a Queen. Her passion for what she did and believed in spoke beyond the words merely coming out vocally.

I remember her telling me sternly, "I'll give you 2 minutes." I had about 10 minutes to set up a make shift studio in a crowded and small room in City Hall. I remember also noting that I had to take the time to make sure I wasn't sweating when she arrived. Not that I was going to stand toe to toe with this woman, but you don't want to be sweating when photographing the mayor. I managed to get things together as she approached the sitting. She smiled at me and said she was kidding about the time.

Vera Katz...

April 12, 2006


Possibly being on the heels of my commission from yesterday, I felt celebratory today and decided to get out this evening. I called a few friends, no answer or whatever and decided to go out alone.

I've been wanting to get a book on my list for over 3 months called, Wabi Sabi for Artists, Designers, Poets and Philosophers by Leonard Koren. Powells is a great book store and has a massive collection. I don't often come to the area, but the evening was a night to walk. I parked a few blocks away, took in the scents of nearby restaurants, viewed people meandering about, felt the nice cool air only special evenings can bring. Having found my book, I checked out the lacking magazine section... I did manage to find another want, a Asian Culture Quarterly called Theme. Wonderful imagery, well written, but a design that screams it wants to be modern. I'm finding I do really enjoy it, for the little time I've had it.

Things are quieting down at that point, but I decided to hit a café. I guess I'm notorious for being at cafés... I find one close to China Town on 5th and Couch. I feel like everyone's Daddy in there, but I'm comfortable enough to enjoy the best Americano I've had in a long time and read my book. Somewhere between the many passages I read, I stopped to notice my situation at that very moment. Among a crowd of younger folks, listening to some electronica that I can even relate to, late into the evening I realize I'm really lucky to be in my situation. I could always use more money, more time more this and that... but I can stop and think that I live a pretty good life. My moment, at that moment defines a good life. I was able to stop and realize that.

I need more commissions...


I almost have forgotten what it is like to get a commission for my art. I had a meeting with a woman who heard about me from a commission I got last year. I love word of mouth promotion. All ready they have heard good things about me and my work where I don't have to concentrate on selling myself and art. The drive out to the outskirts of town was lovely. 85% back roads over a small pass with little cars to fight with on the roads. It is a path I've never taken before but won't soon forget.

The woman's home was absolutely beautiful. Understated, but elegent with a profound sense of zen through out the grounds. Amazing bamboo trees, Japanese elms, cherry blossoms everywhere... I just hope that the weather will cooperate where I can shoot outside.

I love when I get along with my clients. We ended up just hanging out in the kitchen talking for the next 45 minutes. I walked out with my deposit, but most of all, an ego boost that I've needed for awhile.

April 10, 2006


This was sent to me from an ever growing friend...

Recently I overheard a mother and daughter in their
last moments together at the airport.
They had announced the departure.
Standing near the security gate, they hugged and the
mother said, "I love you and I wish you enough".
The daughter replied, "Mom, our life together has
been more than enough. Your love is all I ever
needed. I wish you enough, too, Mom".

They kissed and the daughter left. The mother walked
over to the window where I was seated. Standing
there I could see she wanted and needed to cry. I
tried not to intrude on her privacy but she welcomed
me in by asking, "Did you ever say good-bye to
someone knowing it would be forever?".
"Yes, I have," I replied.
"Forgive me for asking, but why is this a forever
"I am old and she lives so far away. I have
challenges ahead and the reality is - the next trip
back will be
for my funeral," she said.
"When you were saying good-bye, I heard you say, 'I
wish you enough'. May I ask what that means?".
She began to smile. "That's a wish that has been
handed down from other generations. My parents used
to say it to everyone". She paused a moment and
looked up as if trying to remember it in detail and
she smiled even more. "When we said , 'I wish you
enough', we were wanting the other person to have a
life filled with just enough good things to sustain
them". Then turning toward me, she shared the
following as if she were reciting it from memory.

I wish you enough sun to keep your attitude
bright no matter how gray the day may appear.

I wish you enough rain to appreciate the sun even
I wish you enough happiness to keep your spirit
alive and everlasting.
I wish you enough pain so that even the smallest of
joys in life may appear bigger.
I wish you enough gain to satisfy your wanting.
I wish you enough loss to appreciate all that you
I wish you enough hellos to get you through the
final good-bye.

She then began to cry and walked away.

They say it takes a minute to find a special person,
an hour to appreciate them, a day to love them but
then an entire life to forget them.

* Only if you wish send this to the people you will
never forget and remember to send it back to the
person who sent it to you. If you don't send it to
anyone it may mean that you are in such a hurry that
you have forgotten your friends.


To all my friends and loved ones,

April 09, 2006


She stands a little shorter than 5 feet. I would not mess with this woman by any means. I remember seeing her in her car yelling at the top of her lungs to have these gang bangers to get the hell out of her way because they were holding up traffic.

Beyond fearless, a compassionate mother, pioneer, and very much a renaissance women, she holds many talents. We've know each other longer than I can believe.

Most of all, a very well and respected friend.

April 05, 2006


One of the more out going personalities I knew at my old work place from many years ago. I knew he fled Viet Nam when he was very young, but that was about all. I'm not even sure where I had heard that... Amazingly creative, genuine, and sincere, he was also the big jokester. I knew the portrait I wanted of him, I'd never get because he always turned "ON" for the camera. I knew there was a deeper man beneathe the always jovial exterior.


April 04, 2006

M I S T E R Carson

I've got a friend whom I still keep in touch with from before I started kindergarten. Michael was a rather rambunctious kid, of which I knew even back in 5th grade. He was the one that taught me a slew of curse words. We parted ways during our high school years, but managed to keep in touch. Michael was also the one to introduce me to jazz, specifically the name John Coltrane.

I knew that Mike's father had an ardently mamouth collection of LP's, mostly jazz. He always told me that if I name any "real" jazz artist, he could play a song from his collection. Along with a wall full of books, there were the records. I didn't have an appreciation for them until I "grew up". Mike's father's challenge changed over the years from me naming someone that he would play, to him playing a song and me having to guess at the artist. When I was wrong, his resounding voice thundered, "TED TED TED... come on, you should know this!"

I also remember a time when I was over there place with the family and the new daughter in law mentioned that she really liked Kenny G. Everyone in the room got quiet. Mrs. Carson said that that name should never be uttered in the house, ever. I couldn't help but laugh, but I was the only one. There after, Mike's dad put on a record by John Coltrane. He said, now just listen...

One of my proudest moments came when my 6 year old daughter and I were in the car listening to the radio. She was in the back drawing as we drove... The familiar rhythm and succinct sounding sax came alive and my daughter without looking up said, "Hey, A Love Supreme..." A tear came to my eye.

Anyway, I present, M I S T E R Carson...

April 03, 2006


Quite a few years ago, I stepped into this dive of a restaurant to get out of the house and get a bite to eat. It wasn't the type of place like a diner that had a lot of character and history behind it. There weren't middle aged women named flo or betty in white uniforms with caps on their heads to serve as hair pieces... No, this place was just a thrown together eatery where the service mostly sucked and the food just average. I could tell you what brought me there, but I don't want to bore you with my personal life... Anyway, I sit and from behind the counter comes out a waif, but with lots of attitude. She wore these rectangular black block glasses that made her also look very bookish. Each part of her being was a contradiction into itself, which made her all the more intriguing.

Fast forward about 2 and 1/2 years, by which this time we knew each other. We had planned to get together so I could photograph her for almost that same amount of time. I was at a cafe, not your typical cafe, mind you... Anyway, she steps thru the door with the same bookish glasses and a bike helmet. She wasn't so thin and frail looking, much more like an athelete. Some small talk and up to this point, the most commited commitment to get together for that portrait session.

Finally, maybe another 6 months go by and she is at the studio, in from riding her bike with a torn tee shirt and combat pants with a bag, a black bag filled with various clothing, make up and a few hair accessories. I wasn't aware of the transformation that would take place. As up to this point, you know already I am somewhat captivated by this person, I was not expecting to be this much in awe when she stepped on set after doing her makeup and a change of cloths.

I'll say nothing more...

April 01, 2006


Ruby and I spending some time together in the park...

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