Tag Archives: black and white

Old School Photography

Holiday_Card_2014_02 Much about being a creative is really understanding your voice and your vision, which isomething I have struggled with in the past while trying to find myself as an artist. With the passage of time and constant study, you start to see who you are, what you love and then… how the world truly looks to you. I will never be able to escape my tendency toward romance, beauty, simplicity, emotion and the classics.

So, I embrace it.

I can never ignore the soul fulfilling satisfaction of taking a photograph from concept, to composition, and then captured at just the right moment on film. That one shot, the quarter of a second pulled from time and eternalized into a physical object of study. This was the birth of photography for me, this was how you would take a picture and then agonize through your fear of mistakes in the waiting of development; a torturous process that I’m insanely in love with. In 2012 I decided that our studio holiday cards would be created in this fashion every year as a way for me to count the passage of time, to make something of an artifact for the people in my life, and to slow down from our crazy digitized lives back to where it all began for me as a photographer. I get to give the best I’ve got in this old school process; my vision, my thoughts, my mind, my passions, my skill and most of all, my time.

For this year’s studio holiday card I thought about the recurring visuals from 2014 and let my mind’s eye wash away in the strong currents of pictorial memories. What stood out to me? What did I learn about myself? What did I realize I loved? We traveled around and around the world to Bali, Brazil, Australia, Ghana, Dominican Republic, Provence, Germany, England, the American South, and Peru (more on that next week!) and you’ve been with me each step of the way these 12 months.

As I reflected on the year the place I loved most was Paris. It keeps coming back to me, as if a part of my soul is there waiting. I love the classic nature of her perfectly white architecture. The endless amounts of art and inspiration. And of course, the light. I love the way the french look at beauty and the physical form. As an adult now in charge of my own body, destiny and confidence, I’ve found that I am now enamored with the beauty of the body, it’s evolution and ever changing shapes, the softness of skin and functionality that make us human. I thought about the beautiful sculptures of Paris that dot my endless walks, the thing I love to do most there. I thought about that day I spent in the Louvre with my father and all those breathtaking halls of beauty celebrating the female form. Then that was it. I wanted to bring all of those things into my world, in front of my lens, on an early winter evening at Ann Street Studio…

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Using a dark changing bag I loaded Ilford Delta 400 black and white film into my 4×5 sheet film holders. Below our intern Sarah Rocco captured behind the scenes shots photographing model Mitzi who I previously worked with at our studio and who I knew had the type of body I was going for.  Holiday_Card_2014_07 Holiday_Card_2014_11

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Maiyet Resort

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Sometimes you have to be present in the moment. Sometimes you wake up and it’s raining outside, the wind is ripping at you and what you physically feel in nature, you are emotionally feeling in life. When Kelly and I were talking about shooting a fashion story on MAIYET’s resort collection, fittingly while at a resort for Art Basel, we couldn’t have anticipated the day nature gave to us. I wanted to use it as inspiration, to set the mood, to let the rain fall on her, the sand stick to her skin, the wind throw her hair and the ocean push her down. I wanted to wash away the year into a black and white memory. I’ve been so raw lately, having traveled and created non-stop for so long. I wanted a dark day on the beach, just to feel… something.

I think though the turmoil of that day, the turmoil of emotion is a part of life and a part of art. The change in the weather, the change in our lives. Everything changes, does it not? I remember last summer shooting my first story on MAIYET, the dancing light of the eastern tip of Long Island, the bond of friendship and womanhood captured from behind the lens. This resort collection carries the same threads but like life, you can see the changes. The signature cuffs are here but they are bigger now. The gorgeous coats take on more volume. The artful design to clothing is still there but more refined, more wearable from ocean to ocean.

So why MAIYET?… because they think differently. They hire artisans from around the world to produce their boutique clothing line which aids in these craftsmen to be able to build viable businesses in counties where opportunities like that do not exist so freely. Beyond the clothing they work with artists like Benjamin Millepied to choreograph a video with custom made pieces in movement to a beautiful dance based on an ancient Greek love story. They also made my all time favorite black blazer I’ve worn more than any other article of clothing, and THIS video which always and always gives me wanderlust.

…. and then I’m ready again for the sun to come out.

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Big Sur

California's Big Sur, a sceneic drive along the pacific coast highway

I’ve always wanted to drive along Big Sur, the dramatic edge of the western United States. While in Pebble Beach with Lincoln Motor Company, it seemed like the appropriate time to do that all-American activity of going for a drive, listening to old Beatles songs and Elton John favorites, pulling over every two miles to look in awe at the real picture show that is Big Sur.

California's Big Sur, a sceneic drive along the pacific coast highway California's Big Sur, a sceneic drive along the pacific coast highway California's Big Sur, a sceneic drive along the pacific coast highway California's Big Sur, a sceneic drive along the pacific coast highway

 

Captured on 4×5 black and white Ilford Delta film

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Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance

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It’s an interesting thing, the world of luxury cars. Growing up in Texas, luxury meant the biggest pickup truck on the road…but that was not for me. I dreamed about the cars they drove in Sabrina and what was in Jay Gatsby’s garage. I knew these cars were aesthetically special but beyond that my knowledge ended. Lord help me when it’s time to change the oil or, heaven forbid, a flat tire with the old car I just bought last fall. I’ll def be pulling one of these when that day comes…

So here I found myself at Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance as the guest of one of my favorite clients, Lincoln Motor Co. which as you know has a great history of classic motoring in America and I felt so honored to be their guest, diving into this world of antique perfection.

Here are 10 things I learned in the lap of luxury:

  1. Do not touch the cars.
  2. These car owners give a new meaning to “spotless“… the smallest particle of dust was no match.
  3. Men will totally lose any logical thought in their head when one of these cars or if any of the new concept cars is present…or even in ear shot. (yes, we could hear them driving around from our hotel room)
  4. Racetracks are LOUD. Earplugs next time… I wonder if Donna Karan makes a chic pair?
  5. You don’t know rich until you know car culture rich. Jay Leno has said “Concours is where simple millionaires come to rub shoulders with billionaires.”
  6. Once you show your automobile at the Concours, you can not enter again for 10 years.
  7. One example I found through sly eavesdropping of how much it cost to restore an antique car: $500,000.
  8. Cars in the 1920s (Duesenberg) had hidden bars stocked with crystal decanters and tumblers. I literally screamed when he opened the back of the seat to show me.
  9. The prize car at auction while I was there went for $23 Million…. a car that I can’t figure out how it would ever make it past a speed bump.
  10. After driving around Monterey Peninsula next to Lamborghinis, McLarens and classic Ferraris any other roadway in America looks disgusting… including the Hamptons. #gamechanger

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It was an intoxicating passion to be around, and only something as perfectly beautiful as these cherished pieces of automobile history could distract from the ravishing California coast… pebble_beach_concours_d'elegance_02 pebble_beach_concours_d'elegance_03

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