If you are in the Seattle area this month, I have a piece in a group show at the Benham Gallery, January 10 – February 10, 2007. They’re located just around the corner from the Seattle Art Museum, at 1216 First Ave.
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Local artisan Bryce Tippner makes this beautiful glass jewelry by hand. He and his wife Paola own Perfecto Glass Jewelry, and we had a great time photographing their handiwork in the studio with some excellent models.  They use these images in their booth displays at tradeshows.

You can find their beautiful work online at their website, Perfecto Glass.

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We have some friends who have been living and studying in China and Tibet for some time now. They recently returned to the states to have their first baby, by the name of Adaliah. They asked me to take a few photos of them before heading back to Asia.

I don’t photograph babies too often, but boy can they make for goofy pictures. (There are many touching, beautiful porttraits as well; I’m just showing the goofy ones here….) Here are a few samples; I should set up a Caption Contest for them….

“Yo, Homes, wazzup?”

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Manuel Izquierdo, Sculptor
Portland, Oregon, 2004

This Spring, I will be teaching a new workshop at Pacific Northwest College of Art, called The Environmental Portrait. It’s a natural class for me to teach, since I love and have been making location portraits for a couple of decades now. Here’s the class description:

When a photographer takes a portrait of someone in their natural surroundings, we call it Environmental or Location Portraiture. Environmental portraits are a way of saying more about a person than is possible in the artificial confines of the photographic studio or a simple headshot. Photographers have used environmental portraiture to document figures in popular culture (Annie Liebowitz, Arnold Newman), social commentary and documentary (Dorothea Lange, Milton Rogovin), and the expression of personal vision (Keith Carter).

In this class we will look at the work of master location portrait photographers, current and past; review and critique each other’s work; and discuss how location portraits say much about the subject, but also about the social and political context in which they live. We will be working with models, model and property releases, available and artificial lighting techniques, the portrait as a series, composition, camera and media choices, output and presentation, and more. We will also go on location with models for demonstrations, and for time to photograph in class with instructor oversight. Both film and digital shooters in any medium are welcome. The class will culminate with a portrait series as a final project.

Prerequisites: A firm grasp of basic photographic technique, and a passion for portraits.

The class is on Saturday mornings from 10:00am-12:30pm, and runs Apr 07-May 12. You can find out more and register at the PNCA Continuing Education Program site.

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  • January 10, 2007 - 3:20 pm

    Marico - This class sounds fabulous! I am sorry I won’t be in PDX for it. I hope you post some of the students’ work on this blog.

A portrait of photographer Heather Hawksford, in the new James John Cafe in St Johns. Quintessential Portlandiana.
My favorite photographicassignments are usually environmental portraits such as this.  Visit my websites (both Portrait and Editorial) to see more!
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  • January 8, 2007 - 2:37 am

    Jessica - Love love love everything about this one.

Summer seems so long ago. At least now we’re past the solstice, and are wending our slow way back to more sunlight. Speaking of which, here are a couple of summer portraits, of a young lady from Lake Oswego. Doesn’t that sunlight on her shoulders make you warm all over? It makes me want to head to Mexico for a while….

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Every Saturday night for the last couple of years I’ve driven out to East Portland to Sarah Modrall’s house. Within a short time, 30-50 street kids converge on her house, and we spend the next several hours eating a good meal, talking, studying the Bible, singing, hanging out. It’s an amazing time, really.

This weekend we had our annual Christmas party. What a hoot! We played games, ate food, and had a gift exchange. A fun celebration of relationships built and hope restored at this special time of year.

The kids find it hilarious that I am able to take the group pictures, and be in them at the same time….

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  • December 21, 2006 - 1:29 pm

    alicia marie - Fritz,

    just found your blog via Beth’s myspace. I was lost in it for hours! It is good to see some of your photography and have a little link to your life. I will be back often and promise to comment when I’m here. I vow not to be a blog stalker.. .. ..

    your cuz,

Back in August I applied for a visual arts grant from the Regional Arts and Culture Council (RACC). It was the first real grant I’ve applied for, requiring extensive preparation, a couple classes, lots of thought, calculations, and organization. You submit all of this, along with samples of your work, and then you wait. Three to four months. Wondering if you should be making plans for the following year, but not quite sure.

Well, I got home from rock climbing this afternoon, opened the mail, and…I got the grant.

I applied so I could pursue the documentary work on eating disorders (see posting below on anorexia and bulimia) which I began this past year. I have some goals set out in the grant, which need to be met by the end of 2007. Now I can (once the holidays pass…) jump in and get moving. Pretty exciting stuff. Can’t wait to show you what I come up with.

Getting a grant is exciting and moving, not just to have the money to work with, but moreso to have the recognition from people you respect. It’s more of a pat on the back that says, “What you’re doing is valid and important. Keep moving.”

A grant also seems to give validity to others that what you’re doing is bonafide, genuine. I hope it might open some other doors as I move forward. Stay tuned.

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  • December 16, 2006 - 2:11 am

    Jessica - Congratulations, Fritz! Very exciting.

  • December 22, 2006 - 4:38 am

    Katie Jervis Photography - Wonderful and very well deserved. Can’t wait to see more of this work.

  • April 25, 2007 - 1:04 pm

    midagechick - Fritz, I caught your work at my Be Nourished appt. yesterday. So hauntingly beautiful, heart wrenching and honest. Loved every one of them. Wish I could get married again so I have you take my portrait! Take care.

I love watching people, and faces are what make my artistic boat float. Last week I met Laura, who works at Print Arts Northwest (a wonderful gallery in Portland’s Pearl District), and decided I ought to include her in my Women’s Faces series (which just became a series, because this is the second one shot in the same style). (See this post for another.) She’s a novelist, and she’s the same age as me. I haven’t decided which of these 2 is more striking; leave me a comment, and tell me what you think:
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  • December 11, 2006 - 4:21 pm

    Melanie Armsbury - Both of these are great, but I really like the top one. She looks like she is about to go someplace fun. And her eyes stand out much more in this pic too.

Goatherder, Nellore, India

In the spring of 2005, I had the opportunity to travel to southeast India to photograph medical teams working in coastal villages hit by the tsunami. I documented teams giving free medical clinics; helping rebuild (from the ground up) a destroyed, relocated village; dedicating new wells; and working in an orphanage in Nellore, India. I was with a group from Open Arms International. It was a hot, exhausting, and exhilarating two weeks. You can see a selection of images from India here.

I just received notice that I will be accompanying Open Arms again, this spring, to Kenya, Africa, and to Israel. They will be doing similar work in Kenya, as well as dedicating a site they have been preparing to build a medical clinic and orphanage. The trip will be in March.

Do Kenya and Israel seem like an odd combination? I think so, too, but I’m sure excited to go.

Here are a few more images from India:

Awaiting medical aid, a woman watches as Jodhi writes her a prescription.

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I’ve been working for almost 2 years now on a photographic project about anorexia and bulimia. I’ll give the overview of the project another time. For the moment, though, I have some new images about which I’m excited, and wanted to post one or two to share. There’s nothing like having something beautiful in your back pocket, with no one to show it to….

The above image is new. This young lady, in our interview, shared how she both wants to garner attention by being the skinniest, most flexible dancer in her studio, while at the same time hates to garner attention from people concerned about her weight. A true Catch-22.

If this is something you struggle with, and you live in Portland or the Pacific NorthWest, I would like to talk with you. Please contact me; I would like to know your story, and consider including you in this project.

Alternately, if you have a strong interest in this subject as a writer or publisher, I would also be interested in talking with you. While I will soon be in the process of showing the work to publishers, I am open to discussing the matter with all interested parties.

More work in this continuing series may be seen on my fine art website, and in the dedicated site for the series Skeleton in the Closet.

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