Monthly Archive for October, 2009

Page 2 of 2

brian frank – last round

[kml_flashembed fversion=”8.0.0″ movie=”” targetclass=”flashmovie” bgcolor=”#262626″ publishmethod=”dynamic” width=”800″ height=”566″]

Get Adobe Flash player



Brian Frank

Last Round


Ronnie Britt, also known as the “War Frog”, is a 44 year-old mixed martial arts fighter in Des Moines. Outside of the cage he delivers oxygen and medical supplies, and is a quiet, easy-going fellow. Inside the cage, he is a tough competitor that uses choke holds to make his adversaries submit, or “tap out.” Over the years, he has earned a grass-roots, blue-collar following that has made him one of the most popular fighters around, and I was fortunate enough to follow him around for about seven weeks as he trained for his last fight.



A few years ago, I was sitting in my cubicle color correcting the photo of a $70,000 kitchen to match the correct shade of lemon yellow for a magazine, when I realized that there was more to life than this. I needed to find a way to get out of the cubicle. I had taken some photography classes when I was younger, but hadn’t touched a camera in years. It was then that I decided to start learning again.

I began taking classes at a local community college – first taking a basic film course, then digital – one at a time as my work would allow. I really didn’t know what I wanted to do with photography. Photojournalism wasn’t even in the back of my mind. The reports from New Orleans on the first anniversary of the floods hit me hard. I was angry and embarrassed that we allowed the residents of that city to be ignored. That night I booked a flight to spend a week talking to people and photographing the city, with the hopes of creating a book. Although nothing came of that project, the experience got me hooked.

I was born in 1972 in St. Paul, Minnesota and currently live in West Des Moines, Iowa.  I still color correct images of expensive homes. It gives me ideas for what my house should be like when I hit the lottery. Now be quiet, they’re about to announce the numbers.


Related links

Brian Frank


Editor’s Note: at the photographer’s request, the comments are wide open….no limit

Many thanks… david alan harvey


time out….


Anton Kusters (above) is one of the hardest working collaborators on the planet….Burn does not exist without Anton…the fact that he is jet lagged and needs a “time out” should be of no surprise….he jets back and forth from his home in Belgium to Japan, and his Yakuza project, and now just as easily to New York where he is crashing on the Burn office/gallery/crash pad sofa…he is here to work on BURN…we can do a lot by Skype, but one on one we can really get some work done….

what started out as an extension of my Road Trips blog and just a fun project with and for our audience here, has now blossomed into a seriously considered online media outlet/producer….all that has happened to Burn in the last few weeks is humbling to say the least….our nomination for a Lucie Award is  flattering considering we are just a two person lap top from wherever operation at the moment… this was predicated by a nice mention of Burn on the New York Times “LENS” blog last week, whose progenitor, editor/ photographer James Estrin, just left my loft after meeting with my students for two hours…..David Walker, Senior Editor at PDN,  this month  did a nice, accurate, to the point Q&A interview with me  in their magazine which always makes a strong push in the direction of young emerging photographers….The Digital Journalist guru Dirck Halstead at the same time wrote a strong editorial about the state of affairs for young photographers, and suggested that large funding operations direct some of their efforts in the direction of Burn, MediaStorm, 100 Eyes and other online efforts who pledge to pump lifeblood into a sagging industry….

so all at once, Burn has a place at the table ….organic…based on personal history and trust….working with the best people for all the right reasons, and all of it audience driven…..all of it…..funding for EPF, from you….donations which have kept our loft alive for office and gallery space, from you….submissions which have us now with more content than we can handle, from you….incidentally, i apologize for not being able to respond to every submission of photographs and every kind donation….we are way behind in viewing submissions and will soon employ a professional experienced editor to help, but i assure i view each and every submission…for those i like, i make contact as soon as possible, but please be patient…many many thanks to those of you who have given support….we could not have survived this long without you….

if now is the time for Burn to receive funding so that commissions can be given to the young generation and original work can be produced here for Burn from the iconic to the youngbloods, then OUR  efforts here will be deemed someday to have been significant and historic… i just think that way….

so, let’s take this audience one step further….do i need your help?  yes…. more pictures of course…but , what we all need now is to have a small first class team of grant writers and/or sales people to at least get me to the right person at the right kind of sponsorship venue…Burn is easy for me to pitch….really easy….first of all, it is not about me or my work(that is another problem!!)….Burn is about making a contribution to the new generation of photographers who express themselves either journalistically or artistically or both…..if you have any thoughts about potential funders and grant writing talent,  please send them to Kerry Payne (photo below) who celebrated her 40th birthday at the Burn loft last night with our students toasted with Veuve Cliquot and Orios …Kerry is a hard core Aussie and should be recovered from last night’s modest bash by the time you send her an e-mail –….she is a biz person….do not write to Anton or to me, we are not….please please..

Anton and i cannot do any more than what Burn is now by ourselves…with just a little bit of help we can revolutionize….hey , is there anything better than the start up of a rock band in the garage?? yes, that is us….underground…underdog….full of enthusiasm…the best combo for creativity…

tomorrow we will go on with a live Q&A with Martin Parr…he will answer thought provoking questions from the readers here for two hours….Martin wants to do an original essay with first publication on Burn….i want to make that happen….and at the same time give concurrent commissions to two or three young less known photographers….i will make this happen….Martin, and Magnum , support this effort….a story on Alex and Rebecca Webb will follow soon behind, and they will be presenting at the Burn gallery event this friday evening where about 30 Burn audience photographers will be hanging on the same walls with Bruce Davidson, Elliott Erwitt, Gilles Peress, Susan Meiselas and Chris Anderson….we will try to invite likely print buyers and hope that someone who might collect an Erwitt would also buy a print from an emerging photographer…anyway, a nice thought…..oh yes, my loft students for the week are the highlight of the evening when they present their efforts for the week….we are hard at work on this show now…

so, this is a 24 hour time out from our normal programming….essays and singles from you will up again by tomorrow afternoon….but, this should give you all something to chew on….for one thing, do you take a time out right in the middle of when things are busy???


martin parr – walmart

Walmart by Martin Parr


Walmart by Martin Parr

Walmart is the biggest retailer in the world and as such should be documented seriously.
We would like to find out more about this large and impressive retailer. What sort of customer do they have, which is the biggest Walmart in the USA, what community initiatives do they undertake?

All these questions and more I intend to explore.

If we think about recent documentation of American society , you rarely see images from Walmart, yet they are a recent American success story and are now an integral part of American life. It is impossible now to think about contemporary America without considering this company. This should be celebrated and documented.


i think Martin Parr needs no introduction….he is undoubtedly one of the most respected and popular (and imitated) photographers  of our time….and a true renaissance man excelling in making a mark in the publishing world, the commercial world, the art world, and the curatorial world….

my invitation to you now is to ask Martin Parr some well thought out questions…..he will join us  “live” in the next few hours, most likely 6pm GMT…..he will spend two hours answering the most thought provoking questions…..


oh yes, by the way, Martin plans on shooting an extended version of his Walmart work exclusively for BURN….

-david alan harvey


Website: Martin Parr

roberto seba – numb

[slidepress gallery=’robertoseba-numb’]

Hover over the image for navigation and full screen controls

Roberto Seba


play this essay


Numb is an ongoing series I started last year.

I’ve always been very fond of storytelling and narrative formats:  movies, literature, music, painting and photography. For me, it didn’t matter whether it was “real” or not, as long as it told a story I could relate to. This is what I wanted to do for this project. To create bits and pieces of incomplete narratives that kept the story going outside the single frame.

The main theme here is the absence of feelings, a particular numbness towards these objects of desire. Sometimes one can get so obsessed about certain things, that he/she does not notice the very world that surrounds him/her. Every aspect of life is reduced to a single objective. It then becomes very goal-oriented, and once this goal is achieved it loses its meaning.

The entire “mise-en-scène” is clearly staged in order to communicate a sense of artificiality and lack of real emotions. The actors and the compositional aspect suggest a stiffness from the characters, as if they were paralysed to the real world, locked inside their own minds. This essay wasn’t meant just as a critique. I’m not just an observer looking down on these daily events. The pictures reflect not only the outside world, but a world which I am also part of.



Roberto started as an Art Director for and Ad Agency but after a short period quit and decided that it was time to pursue another passion: moving images. So he experimented with some shorts films. But it wasn’t until very recently that he found his true passion.

Photography has made it possible for greater experimentation, blending the narrative and creative aspect of movies and staged scenes into the contained frame of a single image. Most of his personal work is based on staged photography. This is where he experiments creating scenes from everyday life.

Roberto Seba was born in Brazil in 1981. He currently lives in Sao Paulo and works mainly as a portrait and travel photographer for several magazines.


Related links

Roberto Seba


Editor’s Note: Please only one comment per person under this essay.. Further discussions should take place under Dialogue..

Many thanks… david alan harvey

sam harris – postcards from home

[slidepress gallery=’samharris-postcards’]

Hover over the image for navigation and full screen controls

Sam Harris

Postcards From Home

play this essay


‘Postcards from Home’ was recently born out of personal material I’ve been shooting in-between projects, as we settle into our new life in Australia.  A sort of domestic sketchbook, odd moments that catch my attention… I often edit a few months after shooting, and as I did, I began to realize that these images were pulling me in a direction of their own…



I started my career in the London music industry of the 90’s, shooting record sleeve art and portraits for magazines such as The Sunday Times Magazine, Esquire, Dazed & Confused and Raygun. In the late 90’s I went on to also shoot reportage assignments.

In 2002, in search of a sea change, I left London behind to travel slowly with my family in India and Australia and over several years. During our journey I photographed the project ‘ROUTINELESS – a slow travelogue’. Images from the early part of this work were published in the Steidl book ‘Sensation’ (2003).

In 2008 we finally settled in the forests of South Western Australia. I’ve recently started a new project based around the local community, their values and lifestyle.


Related links

Sam Harris


Editor’s Note: Please only one comment per person under this essay.. Further discussions should take place under Dialogue..

Many thanks… david alan harvey