Thursday, March 29, 2007
New image taken a while ago but finished today that sorta answers my current dilemma of what the fuck to do next.
Which basically started as a reaction to World War I. So why not Dada on the eve of WW III?
You are looking at Stacy and a fish. I'm having lunch with her on Friday and she has no idea that this actually exists as of yet.
Neil Young provided the title, just as he often provides a lot of things for me. Inspiration. Grounding. History. Sheer unadulterated I don't give a fuck TALENT. Hero of mine, right up there with Iggy, and that's strong company.
"Will I Still Be In Your Eyes And On Your Mind" is from the song "Journey Through The Past." You can't buy that album on CD. You can get the vinyl on eBay, but you better have a turntable, like I do. He does however, perform it in the newly released and BRILLIANT "Live at Massey Hall 1971" record. Buy it. It's fucking amazing. And I'm talking full body goosebumps...
"When will I see you again?"
Tuesday, March 27, 2007
"Knuckles the dog what a very good dog you are
You're the best dog of all the other dogs by far
Raised to run the greyhound tracks
Down on the puppy farm
Retired athlete now devoted
To protecting people from harm
Too slow to compete they sent you away
To the glue factory
Saved by a handicapped boy
Now everybody knows that boy was me
I am a blind and palsied boy
Condemned to life in this wheelchair
Other kids will not play with me
But Knuckles the dog, you were always there
Knuckles goes to the nursing home
To visit the elderly
Abandoned by their own children
Knuckles lifts them from their misery
Knuckles the dog what a very good dog you are
You're the best dog of all the other dogs by far
Knuckles the dog won't hunt
He respects all forms of life
Dying now in my arms
To save me he bravely gave his life
Put down by an assassin's bullet
That was meant for me
Knuckles the dog who helps people
Now you are forever free
Knuckles the dog what a very good dog you were
Knuckles the dog
Knuckles goes with you
When you explore
Just pull his leash
He'll go for a walk
He's your dog
Knuckles the dog what a very very good dog
Very good dog
The entry is Killdozer's "Knuckles The Dog Who Helped People" which is out of print as are most things good. Killdozer was a great band from Madison, WI that had some Butch Vig ties early on. They were great live – I mean I think I saw them at the Fallout Shelter in Raleigh – right? 1987? Maybe I just thought about it…lost years…
Anyway, back to Knuckles. It's a sad story, but life affirming in a Lassie kinda way.
I believe that animals (domesticated ones - NOT that stingray that rightfully took out that Animal Planet wacko) can actually "love" you. Raise your eyebrow if you must, but the Baby Kitty is looking at me lovingly right this second. Of course it is exactly 13 minutes until dinner time...
The photo is Naama, who is an exception to the out of print rule. She is better than good and still in print...
Saturday, March 24, 2007
Finally got a good night's sleep after no heat for three days and a landlord that is a little lazy and plumbers that have to go home at 4:59pm, whether the job's done or not - the city that never sleeps - indeed!
Then - the fried chicken fingers and fries while watching my only sports guilty pleasure (I’m from NC dammit!) the March Madness bullshit kinda messed with me gurgle gurgle gurgle, but I managed to counter-act it with several pints of Goosehead beer.
I gotta take better care of myself...
Met Naomi Harris last night randomly at a gallery opening we both attended in Williamsburg. She is in the Taschen book with me and her work documenting the Swinger Culture in the US is fascinating. She obviously gains their trust and takes some amazing shots. The mind boggles, then makes a movie, then boggles again...
She's was really cool. Always great to know that your peers aren't assholes...
Burning through photos today. Randomly, scattered, no attention span. But burning none-the less...
One of my favorite music quotes is from the film "X The Unheard Music" - Bill Morgan's groundbreaking 1984 feature film about X. Ray Manzarek (from the Doors, who produced their first four albums) says that the first thing he read about the band was a local review that said "Sounds like murder."
This shot of Sienna makes me think of murder. Especially if you look at it with X's "It's Who You Know" playing in the background.
Monday, March 19, 2007
Retouching like a madman, trying to get them damn CDs in the mail. Just finished up Sherice and amongst her shots were the first shots taken with my new MF Mamiya. Good god, they're gorgeous - there's nothing like quality glass and a big ass negative (you can quote me on that).
I suddenly have the urge to watch "The Big Lebowski."
I am ignoring most requests for shoots and putting the governor on my own desires. I've got a short list of models I've talked to about shooting something that are game any time I am, but I'm gonna wait for inspiration. Something...the next thing...something.
Also, I'm finishing up the shots of Melanie from the other night. Working with her is so simple, no prep, no pre-production, no worries. She's cool enough with me to just let stuff happen and a wonderful sport. I basically just had her "work" the living room chair in her apartment. As soon as she started flippin' and flyin' around, I knew we were onto something. I think the results are interesting, and that's really all that matters to me.
Maybe that's the reason for my creative break. Melanie was so easy and few and far between of them are. The folks on my short list will be, I think, and if not, Julia will be. She's a genius and throws it right at the camera. That's exciting to me now, but maybe only in a low energy, lazy way. The muse comes and goes in waves - I think mine is in the Caribbean right now...surfing and drinking Coronas.
I'm also feeling the responsibility of taking my photography to the next level, which quite frankly goes against my nature. So I have to manufacture drive and focus (no pun intended) and get it there. Now's the time, fucker...
That said, I've got a meeting with a gallery here in Williamsburg that has a national presence on Friday. I met the owner at his show in Los Angeles back in November and the dude already likes me. That's much easier for me...
Maybe I should take some beer...
The photo is Melanie in the chair - one of many shots. If you squint, you can see Sanders' large format camera in the background and his scanner right in front of that. Pure documentary.
The title of this spew is from a REM song.
“A man had a house, he built a wall down the middle of it, he had an apartment on this side, he had an apartment on this side. up. In this apartment he had furniture, clothes, food, books... a cat. In this apartment he had different food, different clothes, different furniture, different books. And a gerbil. ...No that's not true. He would live over on this side for a while, until he got tired of it, then he would take off his clothes and put his books down on the counter, and he'd move over to this side for a while until he got tired of it and then move back over to this side and he flip-flopped back and forth until he died. When he died they went into the house and they crawled back in the back apartment, back in this closet, over here... And the whole closet was filled, floor to ceiling, with -- this is my story, c'mon you guys... This is true, by the way, this is incidentally a true story. Peter can confirm it for you. Must be getting old.... When he died they went back in this part over here and in the closet they found these books piled up, from the floor to the ceiling, packed in, and it was this book that he wrote and every single copy of the book that was ever printed was in there, he never gave one away or showed it to anybody so nobody ever knew that he wrote it. He just kept it there. And the name of the book was Life and How to Live It."
- Michael Stipe, L.A. Amphitheatre, September, 1986
Thursday, March 15, 2007
Things on my mind:
- Florida depresses me.
- Since Winter is almost over, Jet Blue should fly to Tallahassee, and quick...
- On Interstate 10 between Jacksonville and Tallahassee, there are some scary "Christian Right" billboards. A lot of them. My vote for the scariest said "The real Supreme Court meets up here. -God."
- Heavy Metal is the only kind of ROCK I could find on the radio. God bless (that's irony, folks) my pal Sarah for making me a brand new compilation CD.
- I am digging the Silversun Pickups song on that CD. Hard.
- I leave for 36 hours and everything goes to hell.
- I feel like I've been gone for a week.
- There are no strip clubs in Tallahassee. There are only "Bikini Bars" in Jacksonville.
- I am craving a steak. And apparently I am going to get some steak (thanks, guys!)
- Friends are important. When you can do nothing to help, just be there.
- People don't get hugged enough. And it's like a handshake. if you do it, mean it.
- Scanning negatives sucks (I think I might have mentioned that one before...)
- Retouching sucks (ditto)
- The new Chuck Klosterman book is hilarious, as are his others. The Neil Young bio "Shakey" is also great.
- I had no idea that in 1983 and 1984 when I saw Neil Young that he was completely out of his mind. Really...
- Florida depressed me.
Photo is Theda from the Taschen book. I even heard from a model that it's at the ICP bookstore today.
Saturday, March 10, 2007
The Taschen books are here, and I am overwhelmed. I'll skip the details of the UPS ride out to Canarsie at 9pm and the 100 angry people standing in line ahead of me and the $65.00 car service fee and me having to carry 70 lbs. of paper up four flights - I guess those ARE the details...
OK, had the guy been here when I was, I woulda had to do the stairs thing anyway...
Eric and Dian did a fantastic job. The layout is exquisite. The choice of work is visionary. And the fucker is heavy, man. Like you could kill a man with it.
I am so honored to be included in the company of so many people I admire; some close friends and some damn famous people.
On another note, my best friend in all the world's Mother passed away last night. So I'm off to Georgia. I grew up with his family as my "substitute family" - between the years of 1975 and 1982, and along with my family, she took very good care of me, fed me, tolerated me and encouraged me.
She is an extremely important person in my life. It's a sad, sad day.
Friday, March 09, 2007
In the three hours I wasn't at home this morning UPS came and went.
Now, in order to get my books, I gotta rent a car service round-trip, go to Canarsie to the UPS joint, and get my package - prolly to the tune of $40.00 + tip.
It's times like this that I wish I still had that car I sold in 1989 - but only for about half an hour.
No, they won't send the driver back.
No, I can't pick it up before 8:30pm.
No, once you tell them you will pick it up, it won't be delivered on Monday.
HEY UPS, I WANT MY FUCKING BOOKS!
The title of this blog is the last line ever uttered (by Johnny Rotten) at the last ever (original) Sex Pistols show - San Francisco, 1978. Winterland.
The photo (man, I wish I had taken it, but I don't think I was old enough) is one of the most brilliant things I've ever run across on the Internet. 'Cause it's real. And it's evil. Just like UPS.
Everyone got their Taschen books today......except me.
Hey UPS! Don't make me start biting my fingernails again or light up a smoke, OK?
It's not real until you see it, you know?
On another note, I've been sending my work out to photography reps here in the city with absolutley no response, as expected.
And I can't shake this cold. My girl and I are pitching a perfomance to BAM. One night only - "The Mucus Orchestra" - and if they don't bite because Mark Morris has got the joint booked, we'll take it to Lincoln Center.
I swear we will. In German! Without subtitles! With Domenic West and Milla Jovovich as us. Naked. For scale...
Wednesday, March 07, 2007
With the photo, at least...
(Everything else in the world is phenomenally fucked up, but I'm ignoring that for the moment.)
But anyhow, here's Melanie, standing pretty, about to be abducted.
My pal, Viva aksed me, that's right, aksed me, "So how many pussycats do you have now on chairs? Going for a world's record are you?"
And I told her in no uncertain terms, "Enough to fill a used furniture store!"
I love Viva, don't get me wrong. We are LONG overdue for a dwink. That's right, a dwink.
For those geeky photographer types, I used the "Anti-Cat Plug-In" and it just automatically turned out like this...
(Don't fret, it's freeware - just Google it).
Although The Baby Kitty was wary as she sat on my monitor and oversaw my actions. But after viewing the before and after, even she agreed that the plug-in was a good call.
And yes, Don, of course all cats are pure goodness geniuses...
Tuesday, March 06, 2007
I went up to Sanders' and Melanie's place on the Upper East/West Side tonight to shoot Melanie for the CHAIRS series and the cat ate everything!
I've only shot one other model (Sarah, are you reading this?) more than I've shot Melanie. And she is responsible for one of my most favorite shots ever - the Statue of Liberty thing in the shower shot. And me being published by Taschen, and pretty much my career, should I choose to make it one...
But shit! This cat - man... In the shot, jealous, doing "cat pose" which is redundant I know, but come on! And he obviously ate my gamma/saturation/chroma stuff in the stuff, you know? I mean, obviously!
Anyway, I'm gonna buckle down and fix it all. Tomorrow.
Cats. Hate them all over the place, but love rubbing their little chins. And the purrs that come with that.
I call all cats "Poops" - especially my own...
The photo is, well... you know what it is...and the title of this entry is a Cocteau Twins song. Which kicks ass in it's original form and in the Deftones' cover as well, which I am listening to right this very moment.
Cocteau. That's the next post...
(Sanders loaned me a Rolleiflex MXEVS...so more on that too...)
Sunday, March 04, 2007
Friday, March 02, 2007
Sick. Sneezing, coughing, congestion. Can't concentrate or make sense. Blowing snot.
I feel like one of those balloons in the Macy's Thanksgiving Parade that has lost it's twenty handlers and is floating upwards toward the atmosphere, only to violently explode and land in Des Moines and be explained by the Guvment as "pieces of a weather balloon."
I wish one of my handlers still had hold of the rope and could pull me gracefully down to 34th Street with the deftness of Errol Flynn and stab me with his swashbuckling sword, and put me out of my misery.
You should not take Dayquil at night, which is sorta what I did...
I shot Sienna this afternoon/evening and I was fine. It was probably adrenaline, professional acumen, and timing, but as soon as I got into the cab to come home, I became a pod person.
Photo is of her - she's the coolest. Me? Not bad work for an extra from "28 Days Later."
Thursday, March 01, 2007
An interesting publication from 168 2nd Avenue, NY, NY 10003.
$14.99 on the newsstands or www.100-women.com.
It's literally eight 12 page or so stories photographed by some name photographers ( Marc Baptiste, Maggie Goudsmit, Gavin Bond, etc...) of agency girls, mostly NYC agencies, although there are some from Europe.
Some of the stories/shots are good, some of them are bad. But it is interesting. In that it is nothing but an advertisement paid for (Adorama, Splashlight, LeBook, Hasselblad) publication to introduce these models and these agencies to me.
Brilliant. Useless. Crap.
Someone had a great idea.
I want to shoot for the next one - just because...
The photo is of Sherice. She could have/should have been in this magazine...
...of the "One Hundred Women" exactly 5 of them are African-American.