ahh, Paris in spring…

Joseph Koudelka gives a winsome Martin Parr a pat on the back after the Paris portraits session

John Gladdy emerges from his Paris hotel executive suite, only to be met by the dreaded Burn paparazzi


Like most photographers, I have a bunch of ideas about half cooked….Only some very few of my many on going projects actually get finished…I write about finishing often on Burn because it is the one single element most holding most photographers back..They just do not finish..I have often described a one in ten “finish rate”, which sounds low, but might actually be high….In any case the above two pictures, along with hundreds of others will fit into my now 4th book in progress tentatively titled:   PHOTOGRAPHERS (I have known)..

You will have to use your imagination on the typography and layout, but you can probably imagine the scrapbook look that would contain all the pictures I have made of my colleagues over the last 40+ years. No not just now as in Paris with the Magnum crowd and a piece of the Burn crowd, but all the way back to my college days, newspaper days, NatGeo days and 15 yrs worth of Magnum days and from seminars and photo fests world wide and all of my students and on and on and on…

Yup, I have pictures of probably everyone reading this text right now…Right? Or pretty damned close to it. Everybody shoots these “extended family ” pictures , but I might just have been doing it longer and over a wider demographic of our photographic community than most…

This is not so unusual , for photographers seems to love taking pictures of each other. I saw it at Look3 and I see it at the Magnum meetings like the one we just had now in Paris.  Photographers will often say “don’t take my picture, I belong on the other side of the camera”,  then give a silly grin into the camera just like everyone else getting their picture made. C’mon let’s face it, we all like being in a “memory picture” …Not a good picture. Not an intentional picture. Just a snapshot for the memory book. Well, this memory book might just be a real book. So unselfconscious and so not “trying” that it might just have an authenticity to it that would give it some lasting value. A little piece of history. And of course I will sell a copy to all the photographers who are in the book! Hot sales figures right there. :)

Of course, the cynical response could be, and will be, “who cares about a bunch of pictures of photographers?”…. a fair question of course…Well, I would sure buy a copy if someone else did it..Assuming it was done in a really interesting way…Just a bit of text, a few identifying captions, and well ..done…

Above are just two of the many I took around the Magnum annual gathering of the tribe. The first is of an unusual moment when Martin Parr arrived at the HCB Foundation cocktail party after photographing dozens of Parisians who had been lined up around the block to have a Parr Portrait as part of a Paris office fundraiser. Who could be more different than Parr? Koudelka, that’s who…Yet this is classic..Two photographers who see the world so so differently, and who might disagree on some issues, yet blend in a family way in the long run of our cooperative..This is the extended family of photography that I have always seen since my youngest days. Here played out on the same time stage with a late night Burn crowd reunion in the room of John Gladdy who decided to show us work at 3:30am after a diet of champagne, red wine, and tequila…All of this is part of my photo mix. What I have seen since starting to shoot this sort of thing during my grad school days.

That old famous line “if you remember the 60’s you were not there” is pretty much true. Same for a lot of these gatherings. I sure would not remember 90% of the stuff I see in my contact sheets. So good thing I made a few snaps to trigger the memories. Good ones, great ones,  to be sure..

Next time you see me, smile..You just might end up in the book…

337 Responses to “ahh, Paris in spring…”

  • 4th book? Ehmm.. hopefully you just lost track of numbers and it’s the 5th.. ’cause I want the others before this! :)

  • EVA..

    laughing..well, yes, i want the others before this too…RIO next…all i can think about actually..Family Drive not far behind, but way more complicated..i can do RIO now, or before end of year, and out with a book in spring…just need to shoot a few more weeks this fall (their spring)..PHOTOGRAPHERS will be very light of course…a fun thing, not a dah body of work thing….

  • David…

    Yes.. RIO.. but also OBX.. I fell in love with that in Amsterdam..was very curious, could kinda figure out your Rio, but could not with OBX.. love it..

  • I’m rushing!!
    David thanks for the brilliant time in Paris… I’ll have to read this post later on.
    Anyway, here’s some of my images at last!!

  • Paul, awesome!!!!!!!
    DAH & D’Agata photo, priceless!
    Burn Energy Drink?…sweet!

  • Paul, is that you in the above Gladdy photo?

  • Panos…

    Yes I’m the dreaded Burn paparazzi :)))!

  • Hey, I remember the 60’s. I was a kid, but I remember them. I remember when Woodstock happened the skies opened and it poured like it was never going to end, and I remember my mother blaming the rain on the moonrocks Apollo 11 had just brought back; apparently, NASA had disturbed the cosmic order of things and the monsoon that weekend was the result. Of course, you could just as easily argue that The Who and Sha Na Na had disturbed the cosmic order of things that weekend too, but they are not as interesting as moon rocks, although Moon Rocks in the movie.

  • DAH,

    Had a very strange dream last night with you in it – probably best to not go into it in public! I will say that in it I left a bunch of Leica lenses and a flash on your kitchen counter during a raging bbq party. I hope they’re still there – I want them back!



  • Charles;)
    if its leica its yours but if its voigtlander is probably mine;)

  • PAUL
    Thanks for the link to the Paris photos….good stuff!

    Fun seeing the one that is obviously the shot you were taking while DAH took the photo in this thread…

    A second perfect weather day in a row, here….hard to stay inside and work.

    good light, all.

  • a civilian-mass audience


    here you are my BURNIANS…damnit…Paris…yeap,what not to love…


  • In the land of the blind, the one eyed man makes photographs.

    Paul, thanks for the images! Have shared them on FB, hope that’s okay, just a link share. Would like to add them to my Flickr if that’s okay, with requisite crediting of you and linking to your blog and all. Get at me on that.

  • a civilian-mass audience

    the above photos …priceless…

    history in my screen…right before my beautiful colorblind eyes…

    rock and roll…yeap,roll like a true BURNIAN…


  • Framers…

    Yes, fine no problems :)

  • Great post, David. For your Photographers (I Have Known) book, here is a suggestion for your jacket photo —


    It’s sufficiently retro, and you are having not just a good-hair day but hair day.

  • a civilian-mass audience

    PAUL…PAUL…you do deliver…


  • a civilian-mass audience

    “diet of champagne, red wine, and tequila…”

    where was I…whereeeeeeeeeeee?:))))))))))))))

  • Really liking this very creative work by Matt Siber http://www.pdnphotooftheday.com/2011/06/10181 Deffo worth a look, imvho


    where in the world did you find THAT? 45 bucks for a picture of me with hair…hmmm, well yes , i will buy one, but who else would? who is selling these? who has permission? who took that picture and where did they get it? all rhetorical questions of course, but ???????

  • a civilian-mass audience

    …but????:))))…no but’s here…
    this picture is priceless…hair and nose…all checked!…oime:)))

  • How much of the $45 is for the hair? And how much the face and body of work? I am curious…

  • JOHN G ………….. looks like a Jewish business man

  • DAH,

    Save your $45. You have far more character without the hair!


    Many thanks for the Parisian photo gallery!
    Is that lovely lady with the old Olympus OM-4 by any chance Eva??

    AKAKY and DAH,

    Well, yes, there are a lot of people who actually were there who CLAIM they don’t remember the 60s… not only is it fashionable to do so, it’s supposed to absolve one of responsibility for the follies of youth, etc. and the embarassment of all those really mindless slogans and old song lyrics that once seemed so profound. I am one of those people who would just as soon forget a lot from those days… I always felt a great sympathetic parallel between veterans of the 60s and the veterans of the Napoleonic Wars in France after the Bourbon Restoration as depicted in so many of Balzac’s novels… we have to be a bit careful about calling attention to ourselves, the best stories are ones we can never tell except to each other.. and mainstream society would like to pretend it was all an aberration or a generational glitch. A hundred years from now, who knows? Just as an aside, you mention the Sha Na Na… I actually played a small role in the origins of that group, and two close college friends of mine were members of what became its commercially successful incarnation on TV, etc. But already I reveal too much of my past…

    For my money, the 70s were actually a far more interesting time personally. So much of what happened in the 60s was in the mass… mass movements, the Vietnam war, social upheavals, assasinations, the media circus, pop culture, the Cultural Revolution in the PRC, the worldwide youth rebellions of ’68, the first moon landing… just to be alive was to be invited to the party, to be part of the history. But in the 70s, things got wierder, more particularistic, more personal, more secretive… people pursued their own visions which led to very esoteric and private places deep in the woodwork, whose very magical and mind-blowing nature could not be shared on a mass level. I came of age in the 60s, but I became who I would be and am in the 70s..

    Maybe it was only a generational illusion… and maybe older people felt that way about the 50s, and the youngsters here feel that way about the 80s or the 90s…?? Interesting question to think about.


  • I am the woman with the Oyl film camera.

  • Sidney…

    Thanks. Oh I now wish I’d taken more photos, but I was just having such a good time, happy just being present.
    The lovely lady with the old Olympus OM-4 is is Sara, AKA as Framer’s Intent.

  • Paul,

    Thank you very much for sharing your photos from the Magnum meet-up. I really enjoyed them!

  • Funny thing about David’s photo I could of sworn I was using the wrist/hand strap on my camera. Always trying to be very careful about dropping cameras… just goes to show what a great time we were all having I relaxed on that little obsession!

  • a civilian-mass audience

    YES,YES…we do have the most beautiful ladies…

    i am gonna toast tonight…to OUR BURNIAN LADIES…!!!
    damnit…I am a proud civilian…!

  • OM2!!! It is an OM2! I don’t just hide my face with any old thing, you know. Tsk, tsk, tsk….

    And I have a satchel full of b&w film waiting to be developed. But it might have to wait until after my next London trip in a couple of days – just checked my bank (im)balance and I don’t think I can afford it until I return.

  • David, you are also here on this Chinese page, which contains the same set of photos as that first site I posted —


  • David…

    You sure know how to shoot beautiful landscape images!

  • So that’s how you write David’s name in chinese! Always wondered about that. ;^}


    man, i do not know how you find this stuff…i am vaguely now realizing that this is the company that i had to force to stop selling this stuff..i cannot remember how they got some of these stock images , mot of which i cannot even remember taking..no doubt i did on one assignment or another, but never selected…i do love love love those fish pics though!! :) i did manage to shut down the American version of this, but i see the Chinese selling many..and do you think i will benefit from these sales? of course not, and just another case of pure theft…and no way to stop it…

  • Hi, David. If you google yourself and then hit images you will see the one of you with hair — that will lead you to the two sites illegally selling your images. Weird that they are peddling your landscapes and not your more recognizable work. Or maybe that’s the game.

  • 大卫 艾伦 哈维
    Da-wei Ai-lun Ha-wei (with tones: Da4-wei4 Ai4-lun2 Ha1-wei2)
    Big Defence… Mugwort Ethics… Exclaim Support!

    Preston… thanks for the link!


    that is the game..they know you do not care enough to really pursue it…besides, landscapes and fish heads and flying birds probably sell more in the textbook stock trade than the iconic images anyway..this is stock photography pure and simple…i googled my name once several years ago, and i got so freaked out that i decided never to do it again…and i have not, and i will not…

  • You know that still small voice? Mine has long and oft said I should be working on a lifetime of photographs of other photographers, as well as painters and writers. I keep thinking it will happen organically, but maybe I should pursue it actively. Remember ‘The Irascibles’ – or the company kept in Paris by Hemingway like Gertrude Stein, James Joyce and Ezra Pound, Picasso, Miro…I feel as if I should be photographing tomorrow’s equivalents today. I guess it is possible to make a reasonable guess at who those people might be, but maybe I should I just start photographing all of you :)

  • ERICA…

    yes, i have wondered that too…and i have followed a few artists seriously, like Andrew Wyeth and family…but the work i mention here is just serendipitous and not “well shot”…lazy ..just take a picture…yet, there are some gems in there…but i worry if i now start “trying” it will change the look, the style…interestingly some of the pics of photographers are also pictures for other projects..for example i have a couple of good PHOTOGRAPHERS(i have known) pictures in the RIO work upcoming…many saw them at Look3…but you are the penultimate gatherer of stuff…so help me keep track of my life will you please? thanks…

    cheers, david

  • “Of course, the cynical response could be, and will be, “who cares about a bunch of pictures of photographers?”…”. ……people associated and in the know, for others well the meaning is not there.
    Other than that I am not big on extended or family shots,I have sisters and friends who love taking those shots.I used to take cameras when I went out socially but they either stayed in the car or a bag that carried around and put in a corner. Now I don’t bother
    ………..I haven’t even picked up a camera to shoot for a few months even though I teach photography, then my role is to mentor and teach not to shoot photos

    …………………………………………….but each to their own needs.

  • ah winter is Blacktown.


    of course…you and i take different paths…cool….as you say , each to their own needs…i have no idea why i snapped so many “diary” photos…kinda weird i guess, but i have always just played with the camera when i was just supposed to be “off”…i am never off…think i just like life a bit more intense when i am freezing it or viewing it, or literally living it through a damned view finder..sounds even a bit daft to me….

    i have no idea what a shrink would think of that..escapism? voyeurism? fetish tendencies? who knows? for sure i am a bit odd to say the least, but i do not care…nor do you…that’s enough to have in common right there mate….

    anyway, today lining up some stuff for spring in Sydney…Burn show, my show,workshop, talk, the whole bit…you would certainly be a part of any educational gig i did if you would be so kind…and part of the Burn exhibit as well if you so choose and i hope you do…

    no done deals…no promises..but things moving that way….

    cheers, david

  • Speaking of “pictures”… I’d be interested to know the number of images people here keep as a first edit while shooting a long term project. Do you edit really hard immediately? Edit a bit loosely and let the images sit a while? Thanks :-)

  • David I am happy to help out in any form….. I will skype soon been busy doing house selling etc
    yup, literally living it through a damned view finder…sounds daft to me as well but then I am not a shrink….

    …………maybe Ross is really a shrink mainly because he asks questions like “I’d be interested to know the number of images people here keep as a first edit while shooting a long term project.” all these stats he chases from us…………. grin

  • Imants; I probably phrased that all wrong. No strict stats; just an idea whether people edit hard or loosely when shooting something long term. :-)

  • No you phrased it well just blew your cover

  • To answer your question ……..organised chaos and “I just know” this image is a keeper that’s why I am tossing it out works well for me then I have no first edit

  • I’d be interested to know the number of images people here keep as a first edit while shooting a long term project.


    Ooops, sorry, that’s the answer to the ultimate question of life, the universe, and everything. Nothing to do with photo editing. Move along…

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