Monday, December 31, 2012

2012 In Review

By far the most wonderful event that happened this year was on a personal level, I got engaged to the most attractive and captivating woman. We met on a photo shoot in the desert which is no surprise I suppose, become instant friends the first day out and our relationship flourished rapidly from there. I have such a good feeling about where this is all heading, for us as a couple and our work as a team in photography. There is an amazing level of satisfaction and compatibility between us and I feel extremely fortunate to have found her.

It was a year of new adventures and good times, some with people I met for the first time and many with some cherished friends that I've worked with for years. It was another year of countless blessings, doing something I love dearly with the most amazing people I've metI owe a huge debt of gratitude to the following...
Running Aground
January 1, 2012 and Pearl and I were out in the desert, this year, the same as last year, my first and last shoot of the year was with my dear friend. We went out 17 times in 2012 and every shoot was amazing, a couple of years ago I told her I would never get tired of working with her, she didn't believe me, probably still doesn't! 
Between Earth & Sky
In January I was very fortunate to be able to attend the annual Photo LA party hosted by Patrick Alt, so much photographic talent in one room! During the event I got to meet Erin the Artist, a very talented self portrait artist and also had the opportunity to work with her. Erin, Pearl & I went out to shoot in Lucerne Valley during her visit to LA. 
Also in January I got the chance to work with Holly Loveday, I had been a fan of her work for a couple of years and it was fantastic to finally get to meet her in person, we actually worked together twice in 2012, she's so sensational.
Desert Shores
Also in February I was asked to contribute work to the 2nd edition of The Atlas of Contemporary Nude Photography "EROTICA", a wonderful honor!
Slipping Away
Then, before the month ended I got the chance to work again with Itzeeru, it had been over a year since our last shoot and it was so great seeing her again, we worked out near Indio and I was able to capture images for my flower series. I love working with her so much!
Conundra and I have worked together going on 4 years and we got to go out 3 times in 2012, this image is from a very special shoot, she had introduced me to Pablo Neruda, The Captain's Verses. As I was reading through them I found one that really hit home for me, "Always", it was so great to collaborate like this, truly a special memory.
Sweetwater Bridge
In February I had the pleasure of working for the first time with Katz Pajamaz! What an amazing person and incredible personality, she is art. Her drawings are fantastic and her modeling, wow, we went looking for locations and ended up in the mountains, it was so cold I had thoughts of giving up and trying again at a later date, Katz wouldn't hear of it, "Just get the shot" she told me, "I can always warm up afterwards."
Lightbox Gallery
A photo I had done with Pearl was accepted Lightbox Gallery's show, "The Artistic Nude" and I was able to make the trip up to Oregon with Pearl. It was an incredible weekend, the opening was well attended and there was a lot of beautiful art on display, we also got to spend time with my daughter Jennifer who lives up there.
Rock Castles
In March I was able to get together with Iota Art whom I had met a couple of years ago at a DM Gremlin open house events in Long Beach, she had taken a short hiatus from shooting and chose me to shoot with upon her return. We went out 3 times in 2012 and each time was just amazing, she's so graceful and artistic, she also does these amazing drawings and has a seemingly endless supply of ideas and concepts, it was an honor to get to work with her.
Watching The World Go Round & Round
On a very unseasonably cold morning in April I went out to Lucerne with Brooke, part shoot and part just desert adventure, yes, that is snow on the hills and we had quite a time trying to keep warm. You wouldn't know it by the pictures though, when it comes to photography and the desert Brooke is 100% enthusiasm, and it is addictive.
The Workshop
Another first time for me was getting to work with Wyldcat at the end of April, what a great day and what a talented model! This shoot started out wild in fact, 5 minutes after arriving at the first location a group of 3 showed up who were there to do a fashion shoot, so we drove on to a second location and after shooting for 15 minutes some guy shows up there to eat his lunch. We kept moving and at the third spot captured the image above, the rest of the day went perfectly though and we got great pictures. 
Get Back Here
In May I met the absolutely wonderful, beautiful and enchanting Shelby Katz, I got to work with her 3 times in 2012 and each time was exceptional! Shelby is so much fun to work with, her positive attitude and fun loving personality is absolutely contagious, and might I say, addictive. 
I also had the opportunity this year to work with 2 male models, I worked with Rusty Shacklford 3 times in 2012, he's incredibly creative and enthusiastic, with many great ideas for images, one of the best things about Rusty is out on location he is always thinking ahead.
Eric was also great to work with and was a great accompaniment to Shelby Katz, I worked with them together twice in 2012 and it turned out to be great fun!
Flight Of Stairs
At the end of May I was able to get together with NevaehLleh for another trip out to Lucerne Valley, she is always amazing to work with, and we had just found out that one of our photographs had been chosen for the "Nude But Not Rude" show at Linus Gallery in Pasadena.
Linus Gallery
On June 15th I got to attend the opening of "Nude But Not Rude", to my surprise NevaehLleh, Pearl, Wyldcat with her SO and my friend Dave and his SO also showed up. There was a lot of really great art on display and the event was very well attended, NevaehLleh and I also did a video interview for the show which was posted on the gallery's web site.
Study Of Form
Later in June I had the great pleasure of working again with Mila, who was traveling through southern California on her way to northern California on a road trip. She let me have a day with her for a grand desert adventure and we took full advantage of it, starting in Apple Valley we eventually made our way up the truck trail through the San Bernardino mountains and back to Orange County.
Take It Back
I had admired Felicity's self portraits for quite some time, and when the "unlikely" event happened that we got to shoot together, it was magic. We took a 3 day road trip at the end of July and I was smitten, but this only served to whet our appetite for more time together. We made a plan for her to return a month later then we did 3 additional road trips and spent 18 days together. Felicity is an incredible artist and photographer as well as a writer, her creativity just flowed and I'm looking forward to many more times shooting together with her in 2013.
At the beginning of October Felicity and I created a calendar of our best work from the time we spent in the desert.

In October I published a book of my work with Pearl, 'Taken by The Magic' which covers 2 years and all the genres of work we've done together. I will always love working with her.   
What Can I say
In December I met Alessandra, (the subject of my previous blog), we were scheduled to shoot once more prior to the end of the month but time was too short and the weather here had gotten really cold. I am looking forward to getting together with her again in 2013.

Just before the end of the year I found out that I passed 10 million views on my photos on Pbase. Hard to believe these photos have been seen so many times, this number is simply staggering to think about.

I'm looking to 2013 with much hope and anticipation, Felicity and I already have quite a list of ideas and concepts to begin working on as soon as we can. I'm also looking forward to continuing work with some of these other amazingly talented and creative people, with any luck it will be another year of art and magic.

"As far as I am concerned, I can only say how much I regret such an admirable discovery should have come so late! The possibility of studying such images would have had an influence on me that I can only guess at from the usefulness which they have now, even in the little time left me for more intensive study. It is the tangible proof of nature’s own design, which we otherwise see only very feebly." ~Eugene Delacroix (26 April 1798 – 13 August 1863) - quoted in "French Primitive Photography", Philadelphia 1969 [cited in "From today painting is dead – The Beginnings of Photography" (catalogue of exhibition in The Victoria & Albert Museum 16 March – 14 May 1972 p. 48), caption to item no. 532 showing photographs of nude models taken from an album belonging to Delacroix. The models are said to be in poses arranged by Delacroix.]

Saturday, December 22, 2012


On December 3rd I received an email from someone who had found my work online, Alessandra told me she was writing to request a photo session with me. She said "Your work is the first I have seen to integrate this warm setting with the naked body, in such a tasteful and classy manner."
In my reply I asked about her availability, but also mentioned that the weather conditions in the deserts, in December, can be quite unpredictable. I didn't want her first experience modeling to be her last.
Nothing On Daylight
After trading a few brief messages via email and text we set a date to go out and shoot on the 9th, the forecast seemed most promising in the low desert where the high temperatures were predicted to be in the 70's, but with winds so the canyons seemed a good choice. The high desert was more iffy with temps in the mid 60's, so our destination was still somewhat up in the air. 
Soft Distance
Looking back now I don't know if it would have made any difference, Alessandra was amazing and never for a moment did I think about it being her first time, or our first time shooting. The weather was perfect, warm with a slight breeze, it was simply a beautiful day to be out in the desert.
I can't wait to get together with her again. 
Grain Of Sand
"Every artist, in a sense, is missionary. He tries to convey a message to his fellow man – he communicates the awesome presence of truth and beauty he discover in the world around him, in its lakes and mountains, trees, rocks and plants, in its living creatures. Down through the centuries poets, sculptors, painters and now photographers, have also been striving to grasp and immortalize the beauty of the human body, both male and female. I see in these forms the elemental relationship to the large forms of nature; a sense of strength like a rock – fluidity like water – space like a mountain range. If I have chosen the female form in particular, it is because beauty has been debased and exploited in our sensual twentieth century. We seem to have a need to turn innocent nature into evil ugliness be the twist of the mind. Woman has been target of much that is sordid and cheap, especially in photography. To raise, to elevate, to endorse with timeless reverence the image of woman, has been my mission – the reason for my work." ~Ruth Bernhard