I spent the afternoon walking the beach in San Francisco, photographing as I went along. This is some of the more enjoyable, leisurely, delightful photography I do. I love to watch people and photograph them, photograph the light. It’s an excercize in seeing.
Shannon’s from San Francisco. I took her portrait after her boyfriend Ian played a gig at a restaurant, and we were waiting around afterward on the sidewalk. What a beautiful face. Love those freckles. All girls with freckles should be proud! And you should contact me, so I can take your portrait for my Freckles series!
I received an email from a customer this week, whose wedding I will be photographing next summer at Youngberg Hill Vineyard, in Yamhill County, Oregon. She and her fiance just moved to the Bay Area, and she was asking in her email if I had any suggestions regarding who might be a good photographer to do their engagement portraits in San Francisco. I emailed her back and said, in short, I’m in San Francisco right now; let’s do them while I’m here. And so we did.
At a friend’s suggestion, we went to Baker Beach in the late afternoon, and the view was stunning.
We had heard that some part of Baker Beach is often used as a male nudist beach. We were walking in the direction we thought was the opposite of this area, to take portraits. It wasn’t until we were climbing up on the rocks past a gentleman (who appeared to be working on some sort of rock/driftwood scultpure) that we noticed he was wearing only his shirt. Nothing else.
I couldn’t resist; I took this engagement portrait discreetly, with some of the unclad company in the background. And no, it won’t be included in their final set of images:
The editorial/advertising/photojournalism/documentary section of my photography website has needed an update for some time. I just completed it, keeping it simple, but including a lot of images not before seen on my site. You can visit the editorial photography page of FritzPhoto.
I have 2 pieces in the show, selected from two different series. (I’ll list them here, because, unfortunately, the reproductions on their website catalog are hideous. They also forgot to list me in the list of exhibitors, although you’ll find me in the alphabetical listings….)
From the series Welcome to Wonderland
How’s this for a Fall Faerie? Sophie is the daughter of long-time (perhaps I should say, old?) friends Ben and Jessica. We photographed them in Laurelhurst Park with the lovely fall colors. I lay on the ground, on her blankie, photographing her eating leaves. It was great.
I was recently assigned to photograph Portland artist Jack McLarty, in his NW Portland home and studio. We had a delighftul time together, looking at and talking about his work. (View and read about my time photographing Jack in this blog post.)
While talking, he showed me a series of woodcuts he had in his studio. This series of mostly black and white prints were portraits of artists he had known over the years, most from the Northwest. Here is one he created of Gordon Gilkey, with his wife behind him:
I decided to create my own woodcut portrait of Jack, with his wife Barbara in the background, in a similar manner. And here it is:
Homage to Jack McLarty
Visit the PNCA website to see their cover story on Jack, using my images.
One of my portraits of him, in front of a self-portrait.
Artist Jack McLarty is a native son of Portland. He is a well-known artist both locally and nationally (you can find him in all the art encycolpedias on the web, and in many museum collections), with a long list of credits to his name. His paintings and prints are often described as ‘independent, personal, and urban.’
Jack is a thoughtful, articulate man, whose work spans decades and continents. His travels have taken him from New York to France, Mexico to Japan, and yet Portland is still home. He taught for many years at the Museum Art School (now Pacific NW College of Art), co-founded Print Arts Northwest with George Johansen, ran the Image Gallery with his wife, and more.
I had the privilege of spending some time with Jack and his energetic wife Barbara, talking about their work, and photographing them.
Jack McLarty’s studio is the one bedroom in their one bedroom apartment. Barely 8 feet by 10 feet, lit by a small window, it is filled with art supplies, books, memorabelia, print series, and paintings in progress. He talked me through 10 or 12 acrylic paintings in progress, many of which I wouldn’t mind having even in their current, unfinished state.
This is the second time I have had the privilege of talking with and photographing a respected, aging artist in his studio. Last year I visited with sculptor and printmaker Manuel Izquierdo, and the portrait of him and his studio that resulted were some of my favorite work of the year. I hope to do more of this work, documenting the lives and spaces of venerable artists. Perhaps it is the influence of the work of one of my favorite photographers, Arnold Newman; or just that I also am an artist, and love to document others in their native habitat: the studio. It’s inspiring work.
Jack has kept notebooks in his pocket for decades. Barbara showed me some of them, each dated on the cover with a year. They are compendia of his thoughts, quotes, and sketches. Though painting in his tiny studio, Jack tells me he paints from observation. He pays attention to life, remembers and records it, and paints from it.
Jack has a collection of tin wind-up toys, dating back to his childrens’ childhoods and perhaps earlier. Most of them, he tells me, are broken; his art students used to come over and play with them, winding them far too tightly, until the springs broke….
Visit the PNCA website to see their cover story on Jack, using my images.
Editorial portrait assignments like this are some of my favorites, and it’s a real pleasure to document the lives of such venerable Portland citizens.
I’ve just added a new feature to my blog: the ability to receive these posts via email, whenever I make a new post. If you look to the right, you’ll see the box where you can enter your email address. It’s not for spam, it’s just for subscribing to this blog. And why wouldn’t you? Beautiful photographs and interesting stories, delivered every so often straight to your email inbox.
If you’re more technically hip, of course, you can subscribe to my rss feed. (If you have no idea what an rss feed is, don’t worry about it; just enter your email address!) You know who you are.
Either way about it, it’s easier than navigating over here every once in a while to see what’s up. With subscription, it’s like receiving free candy every time I make a post, hand delivered to your desktop….
Heritage High School in Vancouver is new, and massive. In the early morning light, the 3 baseball fields glisten with the dew on the grass and the fine layer of spiderwebs that cover every inch of the ground. Our breath glows in front of our faces as if we were smoke-breathing dragons.
Into this scene steps James, varsity baseball catcher for the Timberwolves. We fire away, imagining this photograph reproduced one day in Sports Illustrated, when James has his own trading cards, screaming fans, and pennants.
I’ve known Grace since she was in the 7th grade. She was going to Portland’s DaVinci Arts Middle School while I was there working on a photographic project on adolescence. One day I looked out the classroom window and saw Grace down on the swingset, wearing a pearl necklace and jeans and Converse, looking a little melancholy under the gray skies. I told her to stay there, while I grabbed my big wooden field camera, and raced out to photograph her. Later that day I discovered that Grace and her friend were supposed to have been in class at that time, and they spent a little time in the principal’s office as a result.
On the upside, the portrait I took of Grace on the swingset made the final cut, and was published last January in LensWork Magazine.
So it was a delight to have opportunity to take some new portraits of Grace yesterday at Mt Tabor park. Here’s a favorite:
I’m pleased to say that, in spite of her time in the principal’s office in middle school, Grace is now the student body president at Franklin High School. Pretty cool.