Our recent People to People Exchange to Cuba was a very memorable experience and one that we plan on doing again and again. I could not get enough and according to almost everybody in our group, actually, EVERYBODY said the same thing – they want to go back. A facinating, vibrant and beautiful place with really amazingly intelligent, warm, friendly, and good people. I couldn’t recommend it more – it was a trip of all trips. Posting a few photos for now. More to follow.
I have been lucky enough to have gotten to know and spend time with Pete Seeger. I have photographed him many times. He is truly an American Folk Hero and one-of-a kind beautiful person. There will never be another Pete Seeger. When God made Pete he broke the mold. Rest in Peace Pete. You will always be remembered for being a very special man.
I did not know Bill Eppridge very well but I certainly knew of his work. He did so many iconic history making photographs that we all know so well some of which I had no idea were made by him. Bill Eppridge was as an extremely talented and great photojournalist. According to my partner Joe DiMaggio, Bill was rather humble about what he’d accomplished over the last few decades. I always like someone more when I hear this.
For those not familiar with Bill’s work, Bill made the enduring historic image of mortally wounded Senator Robert F. Kennedy lying on the floor of a Los Angeles hotel in June 1968. Mr. Kennedy had just won the California primary and was delivering an acceptance speech when he was shot by an Assassin.
Both Joe and I had an opportunity to go to Bill’s retrospective at the Fairfield Museum a while back. I had no idea how many photographs that I remembered, in my minds eye, as part of history, that had such a great impact on me. The depth and scope of his work at that show really brought it home about how important his contribution was as a journalist. My sincere heartfelt sympathy goes out to Bill’s family and friends. The world will miss him.
Took the day off to visit friends Dennis and Kathi in Hillsdale NY. It’s always a beautiful drive. We love going to the farm and studio and always enjoy seeing them. On the way up, Joe mentioned he had a feeling Dennis was up to something but did not know what.
Dennis unveiled a new piece of artwork which was made from tiny fragmented pieces of glass that Joe had given him on our last visit. Dennis works a lot with collage and is always open to new materials. You just never know what he’ll come up with. Anyway Dennis outdid himself once again. This is just the first of the series I would imagine. For anyone interested in seeing some of the many pieces that Dennis does his studio and work can be seen by appointment. Unfortunately, Dennis does not have very much internet presence but he is a well established artist and we’re working on changing that.
Baja Mexico trip to photograph the Whales mating in Scammon’s Lagoon with Selig. We couldn’t resist posing on a Donkey cart on the way down. The trip was amazingly beautiful and we had a blast.
Notice our trusty Nikons and our super-wide pro camera straps which Joe invented. They also came in black. Photo was most likely done by Jonathan Selig © Jon Selig Thank you Jon
Things to know when Making a portrait -
Photograph the person with a portrait lens and with minimum depth of field, unless of course, you’re doing an environmental portrait. Make your subject feel comfortable and relaxed by talking to them and telling them what you would like to do. If it’s a formal portrait in the studio, make sure your lights are all set up. Your camera should be set to the right exposure beforehand, as well as knowing where you stool will be placed if you are using one etc. Have the person sit with one shoulder a little more towards you instead of straight on as it’s much more flattering. When you are making these portraits keep shooting and show the person a photo or two so they become more involved in the process. Always suggest to the person that they wear something they feel comfortable in. Layers of clothing are nice for both men and women as it adds interest. I personally like soft feminine and flattering necklines as well for women. If they wear glasses either ask them to remove them or place the glasses a little lower on the bridge of their nose so as not to see the reflection of the lights (you might have to move your lights.) Remember most women need softer lighting as it’s more flattering. When photographing in available light and on-the-fly you need to quickly come up with an interesting and appropriate background which will not detract from the person. Obviously if it’s an environmental portrait you may want to use the person’s workspace or living space to tell something about the person. If you can, try to have more than one idea where to place the person and move them around. Again more times than not, this relaxes the person and puts them more at ease, knowing you know what you’re doing.