most of you are right now either working on personal essays or are trying to think of a suitable project…we chat so much here about essays, connecting pictures, editing for either concept or story, and are generally thinking of a "whole"….

me too…just like many of  you, i am  right now trying to get a handle on my "Off For a Family Drive" project …i do this, of course, by photographing…thinking without shooting does not work for me …now i am in the Outer Banks of North Carolina and photographing "random" families over our holiday weekend….working on my family too…but i  drive , have coffee, think it all over, get confused, get clarity,  let my mind wander off into space while someone is talking to me about the waves for surfing, think about giving it up, think it is the best idea i have ever had, or maybe worst idea ,and generally torture myself to death!!  what fun…..

when i was in college, and probably before, when i went to the school library i would read every book in sight except the ones i was assigned to read…my education came from those "random" books i think…it was always more fun doing something i was not supposed to be doing!!! human nature i reckon, and certainly dah nature…

what about random pictures??  i shoot them all the time (as below) and they end up usually "going nowhere"…but i can’t help myself….if i see something interesting, for whatever reason, i will take a picture…i always have my camera…perhaps even most of my pictures are "random"….what about you…what do you do with your offhand "random pictures"?  are these pictures merely an "escape valve" ,as was my library reading, or are they an integral part of your work as a whole???



484 Responses to “random….”

  • “…or are they an integral part of your work as a whole?”

    Random shots are my work, if you can call it that, as a whole. I fear I have not advanced much beyond the “Oh, that looks interesting, let me take a picture of that” school of photography. I should try to string them together into an essay now and again. It would help me learn to edit my stuff. I tried to keep all the words of wisdom in the previous post in mind this morning when I shot the Memorial Day parade here. It’s at


    and I tried to keep from spraying shots all over the place and to link them together. I wasnt altogether successful-no one’s going to know what the firemen in full rig are doing there unless I tell them that they answered a call along the parade route just before the parade began and I am still wondering if I ended the thing on too cornball a note-but it was (and still is) a nice day for a parade.

    Thinking about it, wouldnt taking random shots all the time sharpen your eye? Writers get told over and over again that they should write something every day, just to keep their edge. Wouldnt the same thing apply to photography as well?

  • ALL my pictures are random. I may accidentally slip into a theme every now and then, but it’s not really seriously planned to happen.

    I show my website to anyone who cares to look. Most of the more “informed” ones say that there is too much there….and/or they say that I’m all over the place with subjects and themes.. Actually I agree with both. but that’s the way I shoot.

    Believe me, if I showed every decent shot I took, there’d be 5 times the amount. Admittedly, I do put up some pics that I know aren’t quite there, but I’m kinda hoping someone will comment on it so I can figure out exactly how I screwed it up. sometimes it’s not readily apparent to me….albiet months down the road I tend to figure it out.

    Hearing now in this post that you do the same thing, but actually do have an overall theme going……..but still shoot everything you see…..gives me hope.

    I always thought people expected me to go out and shoot NOTHING but one idea. That I cannot do. I can’t walk by something and not shoot it, just because I’m presumably working on something else.

    So, having said all that. If I did manage to dream up a theme….go out and shoot it……but end up shooting whatever I see. Whcih may or may not be the theme. How do you reign yourself in and concentrate on the theme. Especially, when some of my better pics are of the total random ones.

  • david alan harvey


    if i were you (hmmm, now that is a thought) i would be even more random…i think your parade falls into the category of “coverage” which is ironically not random…maybe randon subject, but not really random shooting in that it seems like you were trying to show the whole parade…

    yes, you are right i think, that shooting always, no matter what, sharpens the eye…it must…just logical….

    now i have a one picture assignment for you….shoot one picture in very low light…light where you would never normally even think of taking a pictures…at home or restaurant or wherever….a portrait or still life, but low low light….

    can you do this??? or, rather, will you do this??? try it, you will like it…

    cheers, david

  • Once in a workshop the instructor said a photographer must shoot every day, and I kept that in mind. So, many of my shots are random and at the moment of the capture they can mean anything, but each time I look at them they can tell a different story, and for me this is the beauty of photography.
    Editing, as discussed in the previous topic can be hard, and harder depending how attached to your photos you are, but maybe this is a subject for another discussion…


  • I did two series thinking this way: VizMix and Fragments (at my portfolio: aribaiense.viewbook.com)
    During my journey to work and back home, passing by many different places (I’m living in Brazil and actually working in Nigeria).

  • Well, David, and others, Let me answer by taking the opportunity to expand once more the invitation to anyone here (and you too), to save at least one random shot from oblivion every week, by partipating to our “photo friday” photo-journal, open to all roadtrippers, and hosted/linked by our very own David Mc Gowan:


    Ultimately, and already!, I think for all purposes, the history of photography is the history of the resonance of single shots in the public consciousness, random or off an essay.

    No disqualifier, but I think essays are not photography, but rather contain it.

    After, isn’t photography anything but random? (not to be confused with waking randomely, or badly prepared essay/project)


    I meant of course,

    …After all, isn’t photography, taking a picture always random? (not to be confused with waking randomely, or badly prepared essay/project)

  • Random all the time … even if in the context of a “project” with too little clear thought I think, or don’t think enough, or maybe too much. Not sure, confused, frustrated. In the end if it all just ends up being whitebread boring … random or not … it ends up in the same file, or should. Big file, bigger all the time but saved if something coalesces later. There’s always Foto Friday to share random thoughts.

  • Ah, I see Herve just evoked the random Foto Friday … and we are saying the same thing essentially. Who’da thought? ;-)

  • Damn I miss the Outer Banks … hushpuppies and shrimp and bluefish, always loved Beaufort down south, amazing Spanish moss cemetery there … sorry, random thoughts …

  • david,

    i think everyone works differently for sure. some people need to be in their environment were ever that may be and some just need to shoot… some may need to draw… i think whatever works to get you thinking more and more about what you want in the end is the main goal… for me i am not sure what really works at all… it changes maybe 3 times a day… but other days i am just “on” and i know what needs to be done.

    if taking random images is what works for you then do it and think more and write more… all of this is a process. as well having lots of images that mean nothing now can mean something later… help show you different directions on were the projects is going… or were it is not going…

    i am in the same rut right now actually and i find the same… shoot and see what you get… work hard at it. sleep when you know you got it…

  • “Random” images sometimes make it into my portfolio, but mostly, I post them on my blog. Thats the great thing about blogs, its a diary, and for photographers,it can work as our visual diary. The random shooting helps expand out “visual vocabulary” if you will. When I am shooting on assignments, I always find what I am not supposed to be shooting the most interesting and always take time to explore that. Sometimes they make the cut and are published, but most of the time, they end up in my blog and occasionally in my portfolio. If it were not for the “random” takes, I think I would go mad because like you said David, its the release valve where I let myself out and just be me. If anyone wants to take a look at some of my random work feel free.


    David and others, I stocked up on some new photo books and have been researching the hell of out my June assignment. I am going down the list tomorrow and making calls, trying to get access. I will post an update in a few days of where I stand. David, I can completely relate to the roller coster of emotions you talked about. I have moments of absolute excitement and feel as if this is what I am supposed to be doing, and others of absolute doubt. I wonder if I can accurately portray what is happening and give the people involved the respect, dignity and truth they deserve wether they are a victim or a criminal, dead or alive. I believe in the power of photography but I don’t know about the idea of truth in photography. Can photographers really create truthful images or does their interpretation and presence alter that truth? Thats what were are doing, interpreting and creating images that “speak” of the moment. Humanity is just so complicated, can it be captured in an image? A bit heavy and long winded I know, but its just a sample of what I have been thinking in regards to a project that I feel is so important and dire. I think the most important thing though, is to keep pushing through I just make it happen.

  • Great Pictures David !
    i am everyday Ramdom ! I work this way a lot. Sometimes I just stop, look my images and think about “what am I doing ?” or “what I will do with this?” other times I just let it flow…. and shoot. My perspective to know about good (or not) essays always come from ramdom pictures organized in series (a little bit stupid I know). I think it works like a reflecting road…. a lot of times it send me to nowhere project. Sometimes it shows me the beggining of a new road. Sometimes it’s just ramdom, and I like it !

  • Random. Randomness is what it’s all about for me. Sometimes those random pictures fit into projects; flags, plastic bags, dogs and assorted general weirdness. I simply divvy up the takings into the various categories and see what evolves over time.

    In September, however, I will begin a specific project in London that’ll keep me busy for some time, outlined briefly to you, David in an email, no doubt buried in the enormous mush that must be your inbox. More on this later when I flesh out my proposal.

    David, any thoughts on my previous mentioning about a Photohumourist Collective?


  • Hah, that reminds me that I was just reading about accidental wine:

    Basically, 1-2% of a kind of fortified wine randomly turns into a different kind of wine during production. And it can’t be be produced by human interaction…

  • I’m all random ever since I’ve started shooting (or rather discovered how the camera and the street work together…) I don’t know if its the effect of the form I’ve chosen to present my work, day after day, or rather the cause for it…
    For first time now I am seriously engaged in any longer-term project… Suddenly it’s all different, not about the effect, but rather my own approach… planning shots, views, imagining situations I can find myself in… it’s not everyday me. But that’s alright! I am much more energized, determined, street-assertive than ever with my usual day-after-day work… I even dreamt of buses last night! I don’t consider it an effect of being non-random, but rather of a change itself… I’m just wondering when I’m gonna burn out with this project… Still lots, lots, lots to do… The shape emerges soooo slowly… (…what shape?!…) ;-)

    (Hah! You reminded me myself! All those books except the ones I had to read… it was all like this… ;-) )

  • DAVID,

    Please forgive if I am repeating this link and you already have seen it (and not felt it was worth commenting on) but since you have mentioned several times that I need to show some new work I am thinking you have not seen that I DID post new work…

    Since I have been working full time on my house for the past 8 months most of the shooting I’ve been doing (unfortunately) was with the intention of trying to document plumbing in the walls, sewer line locations and so forth but every so often a worker was around (randomly) and I’d include them… After collecting several random shots I got the idea that it could be something I could “focus on” more seriously but so far that hasn’t happened..mainly because they don’t want me hanging around getting in their way…and since I’m paying most of them by the hour it’s in my best interest to get out of the way! :))

    So here are a few RANDOM shots..for some reason they appear much darker published on the page than the .jpgs but they’ll give an idea of what I’ve been up to.


  • Good question. I have many “random shots” in my archives. Some of them end up being great shots-some just memories. In the days before digital, when we all paid a lot of money to shoot slide film, I wasn’t as liberal with random shots;I am more now. But where my “random stuff” has come to be useful is in my teaching. My students get to see that not every shot is a masterpiece. You can learn mechanically how to take very good photos, but a shot is either there, or it isn’t. This is what I do with mine.

  • (btw, I am still shooting loads of “random” frames… the project happens in between… when I’m not in vicinity of the bus stuff, I’m trying not to think about it… but the random ones still tend to be the better ones… we’ll see…)

  • for me, random pictures do two things (and probably more that i am unaware of):

    they provide an escape from an assigned story (still waiting for one) or personal essay and, sometimes, lead to new bodies of work.

    btw, if you enjoy taking and looking at these random pictures then they aren’t “going nowhere.”



  • I think this might have something to do with the type of camera that one chooses. lets face it, you can shoot candids or random shots with a hand held but if your on the tripod, its a little tougher to be random. anyway, as a rule now, I only shoot when I want to, unless on a job, but I will only take a job unless the potential client has hired me based on my strengths. I will definitely not take a job if I would be reaching out of my style.
    I like the word “whimsical” rather than “random”. I think I have shots that appear whimsical that I really like, but they where sought out. I generally will scope out my shots before hand. I dont like standing around with my rig, looking clueless and trying to figure shit out.

  • “I think this might have something to do with the type of camera that one chooses.”

    I’ve chosen small 35mm because I knew I wouldn’t be happy with bigger one on a tripod… What actually determines what… Am I “random” because the camera – and the workflow/technical style attached – I’ve chosen? Or have I chosen it because I’m “random”?

  • Aleksander,
    I have no idea why you make the choices you do, but I would presume if it was an assignment that you would be giving a great deal of consideration to the equipment that you felt was best suited, but if you were shooting for fun, because you wanted to, with nobody setting the guidlines, then maybe you would randomly select a camera and there for could be behaving in a random fashion.
    but I think there is a cartain randomness even in the deliberate work that we do. on the tripod, where I choose to set the thing, how close , far, left, right, rise, fall, etc.
    a random photograph that has nothing to do with anything at hand, or the task at hand. if that’s what a random photo is, then I dont really have a lot of that kind of work in my archives. generally I am usually focused on the task at hand, and if not I am probably not taking pictures.

  • I see the world in frames.. Whether I am pressing a shutter or not, taking random photos or not, I experience my world thru imagery.. For me, my random photographs are my visual diary….
    xox in lux, wendy

  • DAVID,

    Good question. My random pictures usually end up in a library. My thought about them is that one day maybe they will be part of something bigger, if they not get lost and forgotten.. I also think it’s easier to edit down large amounts of images after a long time. There’s only a small amount of images you stand to look at after seeing them a couple of times..
    I’ve also started to think about one image projects..sort of like Crewdson, but not shot in the same way. One image will be the whole project, but that wouldn’t be easy and takes a lot of thinking. Hope to figure it out..

    At the moment I’m not shooting a lot, except for things I’m paid for. I guess I need a break sometimes, but I see something I think is interesting I’ll probably use my mobile phone :)


  • you can definitely shoot a story in a random kind of way, were you have made conscious descisions that would give the appearance of being of the cuff or random. Ryan McKinley, Tim Barber, or Jurgen Teller, really fine examples, in my oppinion, of contemporary shooters that look spontaneous but work their asses of to achieve that look.

  • sorry about the horrible spelling

  • wrobert – I wouldn’t change my equipment for an assigment… I wouldn’t actually accept serious shooting in i.e. colour 4×5… just because I’m not familiar, accustomed, comfortable with it, I’m not sure if I would cope with unknown technical style that change of medium brings… I shoot b&w only, for a few months 1 lens involved… I don’t change my gear to be consistent with technology at least, being random with my approach…

  • Aleksander,
    that sounds a lot like me, although I have strated shooting more color neg, but really I am a creature of habit, and I habitulize what I enjoy. so now I really only use my view camera, and I only have one lens. very basic shit.

  • David,

    As a newspaper photographer, being able to take random pictures keep me sane. It’s the photos on the periphery, away from my actual assignment that I take for myself that fulfill my need to be creative. These photos never run in the next day’s paper. Once in a while one might run as a secondary photo but rarely and it doesn’t matter. These random photos are for me. They let me experiment with my seeing, essentially keeping my eye sharp for the next time. Sometimes these photos get posted on my personal blog and sometimes they stay in a folder on my desktop. But, I do know that these random photos help me grow.

    Jared Soares

  • yep, habit – that’s actually necessary in certain aspects I guess… ;-)

  • david

    thanks for sharing your personal work… your randoms… it’s fun to see how you think, when you’re not thinking… it’s fun to peer into your mind, and what feels like your sketchbook for your “real” work.

    thanks for that.


  • DAVID ET ALL: What is the protocol for responding here? Do you respond in the comments section of the original blog or post in the comments of the new blog? I promise to get the hang of things here soon;-)

    Since I posted at the end of the STOP blog and we’ve now moved on to the new blog I’m reposting here just in case. Thanks again.

    1) Living in the Shadows is a current project of mine. I began it this winter and have shot it off and on since then. When I initially responded about assignments for this month, I mentioned that I live in Barcelona but was prepping for a trip to Mexico City (now two & half weeks away), but since I am now tight on time (AND if I do anything at all right now), I’d like to continue improving the Living in Shadows story. When I get back in July, I’d be happy to start up a new assignment in Barcelona.

    2) When you responded to me last week you mentioned the following: “in some of the other essays you just need to please take out some of the cliche pictures to make your work really sing…in about 10 minutes with you in person i could edit your work down and make your whole presentation absolutely fly….”

    If there is anyway of getting that ten minutes from you, either here, by email, phone or chat, that would be ideal, but I understand you have time constraints. I’m also attending Look3 and was planning to try to get some meetings and show Living in the Shadows, but if I’m not ready, that could be a terrible mistake. Maybe I’m better off not worrying too much about printing this week and get out and shoot more of the African immigrants. Aiiiiii me han enterado las dudas!

    3) I’d also like to know which images were the 4 or 5 images that you liked in Living in the Shadows.

    4) Finally, you asked earlier “i am curious to know where you want to go with your work”. I’d like to do editorial work and some travel work with an edgy editorial style.

    I hope that all helps.

    all the best,

  • I too am very much enjoying your random shots. What impresses me on a technical lever, is the dynamic range you appear to capture. The fullness of both the shadows and the highlights. Is that the M8 at work?

  • it is the M8..
    drug the photo into your photoshop then
    click File Info and voilà …M8 glory..

  • Hey David, hey all! Oh and hey Paul (in the comment above me) – I am attempting to get in touch with you David, I have a similar proposition as Karen Mullarkey – although I am not nearly as cool and important as her.

    I am starting a new website for documentary or photojournalist photographers. The premise is that you submit some photos to us, something you shot recently, and we might publish them on our site in a gallery format. It is paid, photographers retain all copyrights and use.

    We have received several entries from photographers I often see on this forum, but we would appreciate any more.

    Our website launches June 12th (at the Charlottesville Photo Festival where I met David almost one year ago).

    If you would like to submit some work, send on over to me, submissions@vewd.org

    And David, I would love to chat with you about this, my e-mail address is blalock.matt@gmail.com (please don’t send submissions to this one)

    All the best,
    Matt Blalock

  • Good man, Matt. Exciting plus plus.

  • DAVID:

    I seldom know the difference between a “random” picture and a “planned” picture ;))))….this will not be a typical Bob Black post…’cause im running late already, so briefly….

    for me, it’s always a combination of both…i often have “planned” ideas: 1) an idea for something (for example now about time and family and dima/mydad/bones or the Korean/Immigrant students or m family or Toronto/Chinatown) or 2) and idea that comes to be after reading or seeing other pictures or talking with marina or seeing something. But, just as often I will shoot someone, someplace, something that inspired me: just a pic or two or three…then i look at the negative and think: ok, that’s it…That is how the my whole “face” project begin (which is now almost 4 year long project)…

    it’s never a fine calculus…im also a strange photographer. I shoot the way i write or the way i used to paint: i think alot alot alot and then one moment, or one day, or one month it explodes and I shoot like a maniac…i can shoot everyday for days or i can wait 2 months…the only problem about waiting is that the “physical breathing” of shooting tightens up, gets lost…cause if i wait too long or go too long without shooting, it seems “forced” i think about the camera, i forget to see and think more about the camera itself…but i am always always looking and always thinking…but also sound, sound can unleash an image…

    let me show you a couple of “random” images that lead to a body of work…most of this is old, so bare with me:

    1) 2001: the first photograph i ever made of dima. He is in the tree. his bike is in foreground.it was winter, and the first time i every photographed with Marina (before we were married): i saw the neg and i was happy and proud of the photo…i often think of it as my first “successful” photo in toronto…but was just a random thing: i saw dima in the tree and the bike and my heart broke and i put the camera up and…


    2) A photo of a russian teenager at a party in toronto. I used to go to lots of russian parties and always felt like an outsider. i saw this teenager (girlfriend of our friend) and she looked so lonely and sad (she was young) and i thought: she looks the way i feel…so i photographed her…this later became the first photograph i ever had exhibited in toronto (also went to Hong Kong) in a group show…it made me start to think about faces….and identity…2003


    3) Right before I got married, i went to a party at my brothers house (to celebrate my pre-marriage)…there was a beautiful old woman there (my brother’s wife’s mom)..she was behind the bowl and cigarettes (my old habit) and the sun light was setting and she was in shadow and i thought: shoot it…later, it became part of the last series i worked on before i left florida: the shadows i saw there, 2002:


    4) last one…I just scanned the negative to this 2 months ago, even though it is from October of 2003…see Marcin, I dont always look at my negatives!!…i “remembered” this photo for years, without looking at the negs…we had kids over for halloween and i shot 3 rolls, but this moment struck me and i was always afraid to look at the negative ’cause i figured: bob you suck…then, i looked 2 months ago…it’s not a great photograph, but it means alot to me…i once sent it to David Alan as a gift (jpg)…


    OK…none of these photos are great, but, they were taken of the moment…and all lead me to discover something….

    my contribution ;))


  • Matt! :)))))

    I saw your post at LS the other week and saw the preview html you hyperlinked :)))…looked wonderful…will show to Marina (my wife) when it goes live…great to hear you guys are paying too :)))and the rights retention ! :)))))….

    will chat will Marina tonight and drop you a line after june :))


  • wrobertangell! :)))

    “I dont like standing around with my rig, looking clueless and trying to figure shit out…”…

    that’s a funny/brilliant quote :))..i think most of the time each of looks clueless: i always think photographers look stupid (especially myself) running/walking/standing around with gear, or shooting with gear ;))))…but I totally get what you mean..

    this one is for you…one of my and marina’s beloved photographers: enjoy! :))

    it’s a film on Alexey Titarenko! check it out :))

    part 1

    part 2


    cheers robert


  • thanks Bob
    I already look completely absurd trailing a lugage cart with a rubber made tub for the camera, all bungee’d together, and a fricken majestic tripod over the shoulder, with a gerry rigged strap that I had laying around. fucking carnival side show attraction. talk about a lot of funny looks. so you see I have to at least look like I know exactly what I am doing, even if I don’t.
    just trying to minimize the ridicule of it all.
    thanks for the link.

  • I really, REALLY love this photo…
    Can i please buy a print from you…
    Bob, email me… how much ????
    remember: Im not rich.


  • I suppose I am of the ‘nothing is random’ philosophy, where in personal work even the seeming one – offs are part of the greater picture. That said, a great many of the photographers I admire never set out do do projects or particular bodies of work, they came in an organic way out of desire and interest and curiousity..so it’s a case of everything and nothing is random.

    One of the physical laws of the universe is entropy..the fact that randomness in a system is inevitable, and all order ultimately moves toward disorder, or, as it is seen more recently, toward being dispersed. So this dispersing of energy is to be expected..making it not really random at all.

    Okay, the behemoth of a camera has been purchased..now to clean it up and buy the other accoutrements (back drop, tripod) and get some help on board..If you want to see a photo of the chosen camera, I posted it on Lightstalkers, the post that starts with Whoa…

    ANYONE in NYC wanting to lend a hand for this please email me..there is a link on my website..can’t pay, but I’ll be nice, it will be good fun, and hopefully the images will be worthwhile…and I can keep food in your belly while we are working..

    DAVID, did you ever get a chance to muse over 40 days for LOOK3?

  • You know I wish I could shoot much more random stuff. Am I lazy? I just never carry a camera around (except my little film Mu which sadly never has film in it nowdays) unless I have an idea about what I am going to do.

    I don’t know, maybe if I just got looser the work would be better, but I just kinda like the pressure of having to go out and find something in every situation rather than ones I cherrypick.

    Which brings me to -DAVID- I have a corker of a story!

    And it just fell in my lap last Friday!

    What do you think about this as an assignment? The only trouble is it will go on for longer than the month, but I am starting to shoot the preliminaries today!

    The Sydney Street Choir, who were all homeless and with a variety of mental/drug/alcohol/personality problems have decided that they want to travel to Uluru to apologize to the Aboriginal Elders for the treatment that they have received under white fulla ways.

    The irony of this is that of course Aboriginal people have many of the same issues as this group of people have and have been totally done over by white society as well.

    There is a lot more and I am definitely will be shooting the whole thing, but in the process of the lead up to the road trip I will be shooting these guys as well.

    What do you think? I am excited about this one cos its a whole bunch of new people but still links in with all my other work.

    I think this is how I work best, its got a beginning a middle and hopefully a cathartic end and whatever happens in between. I guess thats random!

  • LISA

    That is the most random story I have heard of in a while! Ha! Should turn out to be a nice story. I look forward to seeing it.


    Thank you for the kind words. I really appreciate it.

    Your comment inspired me to work on this project at least another day, ha. That is exactly what I like to hear! I look forward to your contact.

  • MATT,

    FYI I tried to check out your site, which is currently displaying an email list signup sheet. Attempted to add myself to it but the site says it’s “unable to locate the list”

    I am interested.

  • MATT

    “Organized Chaos” is one of my favorite terms!

  • Okay, I’m hooked. Bob, you’ve sucked me into your monochromatic vortex. Mesmeric photo making. Love it.

    Later I’ll look to be swirled up some more.

    I guess today I’ve been looking with the right eyes.


  • I had a great “random” experience.
    Had the holiday off from working on the house and went out with my camera to a Veterans for Peace rally. Nothing there worth shooting so we went for lunch BUT…

    After the rally ends the B-boys I have been trying to locate and shoot for the PAST YEAR randomly showed up and took the stage! I shot with them for an hour or so and got all the info about their upcoming battle, phone number, etc…

    I’m IN!

    From this point on it will no longer be random but what difference does it make…Random or not it’s all shooting…
    Same, same.

  • No human creation is truly random. We all have a subconscious need to reverse the constant progression towards entropy, to take the scene before us and try to impose some order on it.

    I think all apparently “random” photos are more akin to sketches that just don’t quite make it. But how to know what won’t work if nothing is ever ventured?

  • ERICA – The nothing is random school of thought works for me as well , when taking ,snapping , stealing pictures theres usually something that brings you to shoot , some element ,that over time may reveal itself and make the seemingly random individual picture part of a whole – and the whole thing tends to knit the more distance you get from the emotional experience that was involved in the picture taking in the first place – things take on a theme wether you know it or not at the time ,maybe the idea is that the random photograph is like a jotting in a notebook of a seemingly innoccuous comment or irrelevant situation that on later examination gains weight and meaning with a littel time and distance?
    BOB – Still enjoying your work My brother!

  • sometimes.. I see black and White …
    we need to “manipulate” things..photos..

    until they look the way we saw them..
    in the first place.. That is “following”
    the Truth..
    thats what I do..
    thats how I photograph..
    I will give you an example in an hour or two..
    This time ,… I’m really proud..
    its from the shoot with ANNA B, yesterday..
    give me a second.. I have 4 stories to tell ,
    but I will start with something “sexy”…
    stay tuned

  • Random can be good. I am reminded of Richard Billingham’s Ray’s a Laugh book where amid all the family snaps he’s got seemingly random shots of birds and nature…it doesnt look like it fits or should fit but it somehow does. I dont shoot much randomly anymore as far as going out of the house with a camera to hunt for some photos on the streets but I do try and shoot randomly at home or out with my family, or if i have my camera when im going from point A to point B. Out of this random shooting arose a series Im calling “Environment”, which is an exploration of the world I inhabit and its made up of sub themes like “Working Spaces” which is basically working environments like offices, rooms, etc I have been in, “Urban Nature”, “Inanimate” (inanimate objects). I guess what Im trying to do is even if I take a random shot try and start something around it. Sort of like a grain of sand in a clam that grows to be a pearl.

  • Hi, I see that you’re enjoying the obx. If you’re driving through the Raleigh-Durham-Chapel Hill area while road tripping, I’d like to contribute to the cause and offer up a lunch or dinner if possible.
    No portfolio critique necessary, but any thoughts on the work found here http://cellularaobscura.blogspot.com/
    would be appreciated.




    Bodybuilding contest- where else-Venice


    HEALTH 1, DEATH 3000… but anyways… human race…, once more …LA,
    Venice Beach… the mighty human race decided to beat death…. check it out…

    This is the FIRST EPISODE…


    PLEASE , spare a moment at take a glimpse from my meeting with ANNA & the REAL MEN…! click below



    Reggie the “basket ball player wants to be photographed

    playing in the famous VENICE BEACH basket ball courts… ONLY..

    2 photos only


  • Random pictures are really part of a project I think, before starting an assignment or a personal project I always have a very precise idea of what I would like to shoot…and of course most of the time never come home with one of those planified shots…I guess that this is the way it has to be, have an idea to end up somewhere else and discover that it was better than the plan… I recognize me a little when you write about the library, don’t like plans too much… I would also say that this is maybe the artistic side of the “plan”, getting off the plan, why following the points pre-defined before facing the thing… I don’t know about you but for me random pictures often contain one of the best shots of a serie, they belong to the history of your project, they are part of the thinking/wandering process…

  • Yan,

    relly true. I dont think Im good at planning either, other than say a really general outline of a project. What happens in the project is about luck and spontaneity and thats probably the best way to do it for me.

  • random….

    yes definitely to some degree as i often start out a project saying to myself: THIS TIME i’m not going to shoot random, THIS TIME i’m going to plan so i can have an easy edit, THIS TIME i’m going to be focused to the bone, eagle-eyed, and efficient, THIS TIME…

    …and when i get to starting out, it takes me about 3 milliseconds to switch to RANDOM MODE anyway, i just can’t help it…

    i think the focusing should happen on beforehand, during the planning stage, and i suppose i just hope that the plans i make, stick inside my head somewhere sub-consciously the moment i set myself loose on an assignment

    but there’s too many variables anyway, i mean if you would know what to expect, and plan all your shots, i think it would take the joy out of discovering it all, the joy out of being surprised, the joy out of taking an unexpected turn


    it’s a bit like buying a plane ticket for a holiday but NOT PLANNING the trip. you KNOW you will come back with YOUR VIEW on the place, but you will be shooting random (as in “not planned”) the moment you are there

    wow BOB

    love the feel in your images man… dima, halloween…
    if this is 2003, you are amazingly consistent in your stule and message…
    and i get you on the negatives: just yesterday i found several sheets from when i went into the dark nightlife in tokyo with my brother a year ago… never looked at them, didn’t even know i had them, and strangely i was not surprised to find them… like i knew they were there somehow… will be looking and hopefully… scanning one or two…


    you are on a roll man! GREAT closeness in your images… where do you get all this energy??????? damn you must have some kind of nuclear FISSION going on inside you….

    gimme some please!!!



    Muscle Beach

    Muscle Beach, Venice
    Muscle Beach refers to either Muscle Beach Venice, an area in Venice, California, United States, on Ocean Front Walk two blocks north of Venice Boulevard or to Original Muscle Beach, the actual and original location of “Muscle Beach”, located on the beach two miles north of Venice, just south of Santa Monica Pier.



  • oh yes, and random images being “an integral part of my work” or “an escape valve”…

    …. yes they should be BOTH… i love all my random images… but… i HAVE NO CLUE as to how to use them… so they never get shown… it’s like they need a lot of text to explain,

    it’s like:

    a ph essay needs a few words to describe the setting, a “random” (if you can call it like that) needs a whole story…


  • David!!! i’m in Senegal now and have no much time to be on line. Random pictures sometimes end being part of a something. I always take random pictures, you never know… and specialy because I can´t help myself. i see something and want to shoot it… Yesterday I started doing that and finished shooting after a King in his neighborhood. Soooooo interesting!!
    And by the way, don’t think too much. What you are doing may be the best or the worst. But it is what your doing as your soul brings you to it. Follow your herat. always. And the result will be good. No doubt.
    Peace and much love from my loved Africa…

  • I meant… follow your heart. Sorry :D

  • WROBERTANGELL! :)))…love the image of you with your own 3-ring (2 ring?) circus :)))). your description sounds like an early Wenders flick :))…hope you enjoyed the doc on Alexey :))

    MATT: :))..will show Marina this week (mentioned to her last night)…will write next week…

    PAUL: :))…where you nipping on Whiskey last nigh? ;))…maybe that’s the secret to understanding my b/w vortex ;))))..believe you me, most of the time i dont get my own pics and feel incredibly frustrated with them/by them…you’re not alone :))

    ANTON: thanks…the pic of dima in the tree holds a special place in my heart, cause although he looks like an adult in the pic, or some mysterious figure, he’s actually tiny: 5 years old..but has on a winter coat..the reflection in the bike mirror is one i always love, against dima in the tree :))..and i think it’s great about re-discovering negatives so I am happy you experienced the same…i always feel sorry for photographers who use digital: no feeling of “discovery” or waiting….thanks

    PANOS: I will give you one…i havent printed these at yet, since i jsut opened them up and scanned..wyhen i print, i’ll give to you, no $$ :))

    BROTHER GLEN :)))..thanks thankee thankee…more oddities to come with bones :))


  • david alan harvey


    i did miss your link the first time around …sorry…

    first of all, nice house!!!

    second of all, i liked frames 0140, 9757 and 9947…

    BUT, since you are spending so much time with these workers anyway, why not REALLY DO IT??? look at Salgado “Workers” book and look at your subjects…there is more for you to do….


    i made a comment to you a couple of days ago that i could not open your link….now i travel today and have no time now to go back and figure out where it is..can you pls. post again???


    great comments from all…

    and i was “teasing” a bit too…

    my personal RIGHT ANSWER is that nothing is really random…

    whatever is in a photographer’s subconscious is going to come out in the work whether you are on your way to the grocery store, working on a journalistic essay, or have your camera on a tripod being deliberate….

    actually the two pictures i showed you FIT (at least in my mind and edit) even though one is in Bangkok from last fall and the other is from Carolina a couple of weeks ago…both were made while i was NOT thinking about taking pictures at all…

    Bob Black mentioned a few posts back that he saw “mystery” in my disconnected pictures from non-event situations that later became connected…astute observation …

    there is rarely anything ever HAPPENING (subject matter wise) in any of my work…

    i like it if a viewer sees one of my pictures and does not really understand what is literally “going on” but perhaps “enjoy” the lack of “explanation”..

    all of my work is “random” vignettes of whatever is sparking out of my subconscious at the time..

    all of you should really think about why you take pictures in the first place…

    people who are compelled to “take pictures”, to “preserve” or to “enlighten” or just because they “have to” all have their special place….

    i fall into the “have to” category….

    the fact that i have turned photography into a “profession” is “learned”…what i “learned” to earn a living in photography is to put myself in situations where i could then be “random”…how could i possibly have “planned” any of my pictures??

    but deep deep down inside deep deep i “have to” make photographs….

    the “easier” it is for you to make photographs , the “better” they will be….yes, you have to “work hard” to do this…once you see there is no contradiction between “nirvana” and “work”, you will be on your way to your finest moments….

    ok, i have other thoughts on this most important topic, and i want to respond to many of your comments, but i have to pack (yuk) and head for the airport (to NYC)..

    maybe a picture along the way???

    cheers, david

  • hi david and all,

    for me picture making happens when it happens. sometimes i will be working with a purpose a specific project in mind. so i put myself in the place where i have to be, but from then on its the luck of the draw…………what scene will if find around the next corner? who knows, if its something interesting: great snap away. if not: move on. perhaps its a from of organized chaos……do your best to maximize your chances but ultimately its the coming together of disparate elements at the right place and right time.

    but my eyes never switch off so i also have those truly random photos that happen when i’m not necessarily working on a certain project. recently i noticed a pattern so they have become a project of their own. does that mean they’re not so random any more? who knows, i’m going to do it anyway…..it makes me happy.

    take care folks,


  • Hi David,
    sorry for hijacking your thread….. but I was wondering if
    you could take a quick look at my updated BKK story ?
    I http://www.katharinahesse.com
    NEW: อิสรภาพ ìt-sà-rá-pâap= FREEDOM


  • David,
    If you are passing through the Durham, NC area, give me a call.
    917 392 1025


  • David – “nothing is really random” – I assumed that’s what you meant… “random” as an opposition to “planned”, “organised” “thought through” “being a part of some series” rather than “accidental”… but maybe thats just my english ;-) Of course subconsiousness works, all the time! Imagine a man without it, reason-only motivated… I cannot… Most things you see in all that multitude of things are the ones you chosen to see…

  • again,

    I call this series of photos “SARDINES”…. dry, smoked but nutritious..


  • David, sorry to bug you but I just got an email from Michael who wants my images asap…could you maybe give me your edit idea so I can upload those photos to the ftp for the slideshow?

  • Katharina

    I took a look at your project… it’s stunning.. just gorgeous.. you have more gems for sure. I hope you don’t mind input here other than David’s.. After going through this a number of times I like your edit the more I study it, however I keep coming back to thinking it should come down from 19 for a portfolio (more is okay for a book).. but how??? Editing this is like chopping one’s fingers while savoring a dripping mango. You’ve taken a softer and storytelling approach.. which I love.. but here are some of my thoughts..

    Here’s another sequence: 1, 12, 18, 11, 5, 6, 19, 2 (eight total – maybe too few for so many good images).. I think this sequence may have more punch and is a little more esoteric..

    I don’t think 10 and 16 are up to par with the rest. I think I know why they’re in there (set the environment? tell the story?) but they don’t quite work for me.

    I wish I was in a room with these on a screen to talk it out and move them around.

    I love the challenge of an edit like this. Thanks for sharing.. there are other powerful sequences to play with for sure!!!!


    Ok, Panos, which one is Anna? ;-)

    i always feel sorry for photographers who use digital: no feeling of “discovery” or waiting….
    Finally some negativity from you Bob, how refreshing! :-)))))))

    Yet, I hope it’s all figure of speech and ladida… Gee, it’s like saying “I am sorry for people who have to buy the food they cook: no hunting and gathering, no sharpening the silex, and waiting to see if the smoke will become fire or not…” Now I know why I imagined you with a big white beard, you are an old druid in Alain Delon’s body, you alchemist!!! :-)))))

    Film is great, but it’s also quite Ok to be getting something from a very different process. The same feelings you talk about are those of any photographer, dig or film. Just a little timing difference in the waiting or processing. IMO.

  • HERVE..
    you will see Anna.. Tonight..
    still editing the SARDINES/ CAGE story…
    hilarious shit…
    gimme couple minutes and I’ll post something soon..

  • DAVID..

    it’s at


    New York..then 40 Days, thanks!

  • my personal RIGHT ANSWER is that nothing is really random…

    I think we are probably approaching your question from 2 points of view which are hardly contradictory with each other. Before and after.

    Indeed, before, we may be on a project, on our way somewhere, and take a random shot, ie unrelated, unplanned (I will leave the laws of the entropic-qu’ est ce que c’est?- universe out). After, yes, the word capture translates that very well: a shot taken is not random anymore, and it tends to deliver a lot more than the idea of randomness. Tried and true.

    Actually, let’s think about some photographers who rely a lot on randomness (deceptively, that is, and not purposefully, but letting hazard run its course). Glidden, Parr, Winogrand, etc….

    You know the shot comes from a superlative intuition coupled to an eagle eye, that can even leave a lot to chance as they shoot (Glidden’s, Winogrand), almost like a cat lets the mouse off its grip to catch it again.

    But as the image comes to print and existence, it loses all the attributes of chance and hazard, and all its resonances give it a reality, a truth that for being delivered by chance (before), establish it as something that (after) was and will always be as exactly what it is.

    ie. everlasting, the very contrary of randomness!

    I have been lately wondering how many of us do have the first shot we’ve ever taken, for ourselves (not a family group picture). Does it point to the body of work we may achieve, when all is said and done? I tend to think so and I may actually have that shot somewhere in France, in a shoebox. I also know what it would point to…;-)

  • Respectfully call it Art, and don’t destroy it with comment.

    That’s enough.

  • I don’t think about it. I just make it and hang it on the web if it’s a keeper. Whatever it is other than a keeper is not my problem.



    EATING SARDINES for breakfast

    Anna at Work… ..
    BUTTS… etc…

    Herve, can you now guess who ANNA B. IS ?????


  • So many,not easy, but maybe the one in the photo called ANNA AT WORK? ;-)

  • Damn Herve..
    there is no way I can trick YOU!!!
    I tried but…oh well..
    next time..

  • I think two/three/four of my favourite photographers took/take photos randomly. Winogrand, Moriyama, van der Elsken and i even think Robert Frank as a random photographer. That said I still think that all of them had some kind of preconceived ideas in their minds. i think they all took hundreds of thousands frames randomly and damn what came out. Americans, about 80 pics edited from tens of thousands random road trip photos, although made by a really good photographer, which is quite important, and when Winogrand died they found about 3000 undeveloped rolls and thousands and thousands developed rolls but no contacts or prints made from them, “just” random photos, or Ed van der Elskens sweet life, every pic in that books like a random photo but when they’re together it’s just perfect, and moriyama, well he is just insane about what’s around him, insane about life (and perhaps death). in my opinion most honest and deep photography comes out of this randomness, but there also has to be some great skills and eye to make it all work.

  • Panos…

    Remarkable! The photography as well as the…er, um…bodies.

    Those beautifully bizarre broads of bodybuilding!

  • KATHARINA! :)))

    kat, i’m so happy your showing others the work :)))..dont forget about what we chatted about: faces and portraits and the Older Woman who has been down this road…the essay is still gorgeous, and im happy about the “edit” as it appears :))..it strengthens the portraits…I am pulling for you :))…

    JUKKA-SAN! :)))..wow, such a beautiful surpise to see u here! :))…How long have you been lurking??..i guess you’re gonna read lots of my rants here brother ;)))…sent u hugs and will send you a PM at LS soon in reply to last letter :))……ok, so here is another preview….a quote to which i begin my essays Bones of Time:

    “Photography deals exquisitely with appearances, but nothing is what it appears to be…I had confused the appearance of trees and automobiles, and people with a reality itself, and believed that a photograph of these appearances to be a photograph of it. It is a melancholy truth that I will never be able to photograph it and can only fail. I am a reflection photographing other reflections within a reflection. To photograph reality is to photograph nothing….”–Duane Michals…that’s been my the dharma of my photographic life…

    Herve: about failure: see about Michals quote ;))…the alchemist, yea that’s for sure :))..and i do love digital technology and digital cameras, and have nothing against them, i just often feel sad (yea, the old Attenborough in me ;)) ) that i see so many photogs chimp (look at their pics) after each shot: one of the great things about life is the FEAR, the fear and anxiety of unknowing and the wonderment of the discovery, and the ache of disappointment..yea, but you’re right: it’s about the length of the waiting of time…i’m not a luddite, infact, i used to use an old old sony digital along with old 35 mm years ago (when digital cameras did nothing but make grainy, pixelated pics and put like 4 photos per FLOPPY)…it’s just now with lcd’s and chimping as way of shooting that seems weird…but, i prefer now digital processing..oddly, i dont miss darkroom :))…go figure: the alchemy of contradiction ;)))

    LANCE :))))…juicy mango the edit..indeed…

    gotta go, gotta go….


  • Michael thank you..
    its not a coincidence that my favorite movies
    are BUTTMAN 1, BUTTMAN 2 and 3…
    never liked Superman or Spiderman though..
    go figure..
    anyways Buttman forever..


  • I have begun from start…
    here is photos I shot today…


  • Hey Bob,
    watched the Titarenko vids. He’s got finesse, and I like his work.
    but just multiply the bulk and weight x5 and I would empathize.
    He’s like a photo-ninja.

  • david alan harvey


    ok, just got home and took a quick look…let’s talk by phone either tomorrow or the next day….i like this new work, but i like the old work as well…anyway, too tired to make a decision right this minute, so we can do it together later….

    cheers, david

  • david alan harvey


    oh, i thought i told you to send everything….then i can edit, then i will run that edit by you to see how you like it…make sense??? i think you have a total of about 20 pictures…is that correct??

  • david alan harvey


    like Lance, i just want to be able to put these in a editing program and move them around…you do have a few new very fine photographs…perhaps i am the only one here who saw your original shoot which was quite amazing…in any case,you continue to do well with this…when did you shoot these more recent pictures??

  • david alan harvey


    yes, i agree with you….and i would add one of my personal favorite “random” photographers, Sweden’s Anders Peterson….

    thanks for your comment…we all hope to hear more from you…

    cheers, david

  • DAVID,

    Bruce Gilden is one of my favourite photographers. Is he a “random photographer”?

    For a web gallery and a audio interview with Anders Petersen check here http://www.lensculture.com/petersen.html

    Here’s a random shot..
    Possibly the starting point of a new project. Don’t know if I like it or not. Very sketchy work..What do you think?


  • I keep visiting portfolios… imagetic overdose and wonderful experience. Only three days participating in the forum!

    Really striking, the mood and message from your photos! Where in Polland are you from?

    Amazing series! The Rodeo Bull Riders and Street athletes are my favorites. B/W gives a deeper feeling to them.

    Going thru your portfolio was delightful. I’d like to buy a print from your portfolio. Is that possible? No.3 in the sequence (North Korean refugee)

    FOR ALL OF YOU: I will be back in Brazil next week and something came in my mind today, an exhibition with prints from participants of this forum. Nothing too big (I don’t know yet how it can be done, logistically) but an amazing exchange of experiences, cultural diversity and maybe something to be reproduced in other countries represented here. Those who embrace the idea please post your comments.

    What do you think about it?

    All the best,

  • david alan harvey


    please note that all of the comments about “random” and the photographers mentioned who just appear to be shooting “loose”, still have very much a style and a “look” to their work…they may be physically “all over the place”, but their work , when taken together still has a “unity”…the photographs still “belong” together….”random” style is way different than photographing aimlessly or trying to be all things to all people by shooting “everything every which way”…

    cheers, david

  • ahhhh ok Ill send it all today..I misunderstood….

  • Definitely, David. Random shots are not exactly random/automatic shooting, but just shots responding to happenstance.

    You mentionned coverage, answering Akaky, but can we consider that a possible shot taken on the premises of a project, be random, ie. standing very well on its own, without the context of the work at hand? I’d think so.

    I took such shot 2 days ago at the carnival in SF. Not relating to the fiesta, almost certain no one took anything close to it in mood, and I know it’s the best I took. I am not sure, but I think I take 500 or 1000 shots of coverage, intuiting one will take on wings of its own.

    It’s like making love, evry stroke, every caress is part of a whole, except that with photography, the one closest to the orgam is not necessarily the last.

    WTF am I saying?…. Going out shooting…


    It is great to see your work evolving from the BKK workshop. I think some of your new images are really strong.


    I am still thinking about a new project or a new way to continue my work with the environmental activists that I showed you in BKK. What I have found interesting / frustrating is that my project with the activists has had a modicum of success here, which I think is often the case with self directed work. As a result though I have been getting some good commissions. This is good for paying the rent but not for producing work that I’m truly happy with.
    So when you asked me – a few weeks ago now, What have I been working on?. I guess the answer is a lot, but nothing.
    Does this make any sense ?

  • DAVID,

    “look at Salgado “Workers” book and look at your subjects…there is more for you to do….”

    I had a few good laughs over that comment…

    If I had those mine workers at my house it would have taken one day instead of 9 months to remodel! :))

    You are correct in that if one is going to be inspired why not be inspired by the best. I LOVE those photos by Salgado but the likelyhood that I will create a masterpiece like his with my few guys in a white room is not great.

    I understand your point though…try harder, do better. Got it!!

  • david alan harvey


    ok, i have made an edit of your work that i think really shows the feeling you have for your wife and son and is also texturally rich and dynamic…

    i only picked 9….we could go with 10, but i think you look totally tight and clear with 9…take a look at my choices….then, let me know what you think…

    mike will email you the edit i made….not the sequence…that comes later…

    cheers, david

  • David,

    It was so funny finding out about your random readings!! That’s happening to me ALL the time… now I don’t ever bother trying to focus on certain books cause I know that at the end Ill be spending many time on others, the “random” ones…so now I rather combine both! Actually today I just picked out two about photography!!

    Keep on with the random books and photographs!


  • Im gonna go with your choices David…100%.

  • david alan harvey


    i do not agree (as you would suspect!!)…

    you are sitting on top of a great story…one of the most important stories in our country….the story of immigration…

    aren’t those Hispanic workers??? aren’t they at the heart of our economy and isn’t Santa Fe where you live at the very center of the whole immigration issue???

    don’t Hispanic workers stand around on various corners in your town waiting to be hired by all the wealthy white folks who have moved to Santa Fe from New York and Los Angeles??? surely you know the corner of Guadalupe and DeVargas Park ..

    please tell if this is not an important story…

    wouldn’t Salgado take that very SAME SUBJECT, those exact workers climbing the rafters of your new house, and turn it into the art you so admire??

    think about this please….

    hugs, david

  • here’s some more booty action…
    from VENICE BEACH, a woman’s perspective…


  • David
    thats the story for sure. thats one you can dig deep into. thats a story I have thought about too. rich in emotion and textures, color, life.
    somebody has got to tackle that.

  • It has been a difficult weekend. A random picture brought me back from the brink of something negative. Not sure what that would have been. Some mix of aggression and depression.

    I was looking after my two kids while my wife was away in Krakow, Poland at a conference. My aunt in Queens passes away and I can’t get out there. I have power of attorney and I’m her executor. She has a son, a little older than me who was recently released from prison (prime suspect in a murder) and I have no way of contacting him to inform him of her passing. The cops have her place in lock down and now I need to go to court to get access to her house and her documents. Blah blah blah.

    Anyway, on top of all this I’m supposed to get our apartment ready for a private viewing as we are selling it while two energetic boys are ready to tear each other to pieces. The scrubbing and the endless phone calls are making me nuts. Claire’s flight gets grounded in Dublin and delays her many hours and my parents are about to arrive.

    Then an email arrives informing me that the viewing is postponed. Yippee. I immediately open a cold, cold beer and abandon the cleaning. I cook up some fast pasta, grab the boys and head out to the park across the street where, it seems, the entire community is sitting on rugs eating and drinking.

    I’m entirely too knackered to make any pictures until I see a blue ball and two youngsters chasing it (one of which is my son). The light is gorgeous but they are too far away and I cannot run for exhaustion and my lens is too wide. I stood up and made one frame. Only one all evening. It was random.

    It’s not brilliant by any means but it brought me back my humour.


    GOOD FOR CATHY’s assignment ..
    Cathy don’t shoot them especially
    if you pay them..
    they are LAZY AND SLOW.
    supervise them, yell at them..
    but no photos.. They are worthless
    anyways.. Plus ugly..
    no BRAD PITT lookalikes..
    LIKE YOU..
    why am I thanking god ??! For this..
    UP THERE..

    like a white tourist in India or Tibet..
    only for themselves..
    No contribution to those cultures..
    only stealing ..

    or let the illegals do it..
    I hate when people BRAG..
    I’m building a house..
    you ain’t building shit white idiots.
    bit you want the CREDIT for yourself ..
    enough with the white modern slavery..

  • ANNA, great photos..
    it looks like we both
    BUTTMAN more than SUPERMAN..
    laughing ..
    and sorry for calling Cathy a racist..
    I could care less if she is a racist or not.
    that is not my point..
    my point is simple..

    but this takes more than words
    or good ideas or going to church or going
    to IndiA( same thing) or meditation ..
    peace motherfuckers..

    And Cathy
    I still
    love you even if you ARE or NOT a
    like I said.. Nobody cares.. Nobody gives a fuck..

    Great work ANNA.. I’m glad you didn’t post my photo..
    people wouldn’t be able to tell
    the BUTT from the ASS…
    laughing ..
    it looks that old Panos is back ???
    what the hell???
    ohh no..
    yep, sounds like ME!


  • I don’t believe life is a random walk. On way too many seemingly random occasions I end up meeting someone important, who I never would have met had I not been going with the flow. And when I shoot, it depends if I’m shooting for myself or shooting with a specific purpose in mind. But even then, after I shoot with purpose, sometimes life just starts speaking to me through my pictures and if I’m lucky, if I’m aware enough to see and understand, I get those magic shots that I never could have planned for, where the light was just perfect or the action just hit right in that split second. This self portrait in Bangkok was a recent random moment. http://lindatheworldpeacephotographer.blogspot.com/

  • thanks for the feedback !

    I have about 70 pictures at the moment, quite a few are from the hotel…but I prefer not to use them for the time being as I ‘d like to get away from the ” short-time” idea….you may laugh, but after the fourth shoot in a hotel I got seriously bored….I see these pictures as highlights, but nothing else. Am I wrong ?
    These women have more to show ( and to hide: see concealed identities)…. the photos were taken in late February …. I ‘ll go back to BKK soon for the next round.

    sure…I think though it’s too early to use the elderly woman ..I ‘d like to take more pictures of her first before I ” introduce ” her…and also want to show some girls in situations that reflect the experiences of the elderly woman ….. don’t you think she would look totally out of place in the current sequence ?

    I ‘ll try out your edit…… thanks a lot….. am not entirely sure about those 2 picture myself….. just wanted to show something that they do while waiting for clients ( playing jackpot) and that belongs to their daily lifes ( they pray to the statue before and after work) ….. hm……

    yes it’s possible.



    “wouldn’t Salgado take that very SAME SUBJECT, those exact workers climbing the rafters of your new house, and turn it into the art you so admire?”

    That’s exactly my point…I’m no Salgado!!!

    I’m not saying it isn’t a great story…it absolutely is… or that “my” (sorry Panos) workers aren’t as important as “his” workers…just that I’m afraid I can’t do the story justice the way he did. I WILL certainly try though. I appreciated your using him as a motivational example for me…it just felt a bit intimidating.

    My husband is taking Mauricio out for dinner Thursday night. He’s a young guy from Chihuahua who works as a laborer and is going back to Mexico to be with his wife as she gives birth to their first child. They’re going out for foot long hot dogs (Mauricio’s favorite) at Los Dogos…a hot dog cart. Think I’ll tag along with the camera.

    As long as it’s okay with Panos :))


    you make some good points about “the world” but you’re WAY off base as far as what’s going on here. But hey, knock yourself out…as long as you’re having fun, who cares, right?

    BTW Mauricio does look a lot like Brad. :))

  • For 32 hours last weekend I was at Movement ’08, Detroit’s eighth annual Electronic Music Festival. I may be old but I adore EM of all kinds–Techno, House, Ghetto/Rap, Trance, Funk, Jazz/Improv, Ambient, and all those unclassifiable mixes being put out today. Detroit is the EM Mecca for young people from around the world so Memorial Day weekend at Detroit’s riverfront Hart Plaza is like a mini-UN meeting of minds, hearts and bodies. Especially bodies, if you get my drift. Last year they dubbed me “Grandma Techno,” and the name stuck. So for me this weekend was not only about the music but about the kids. BTW at 66 I call everyone under the age of 40 a kid. No offense meant and none taken, I hope.

    As I worked with my hundreds of photos today I kept hearing David’s voice in my head saying, “generally speaking, most show too many pictures.” So I whittled my 400+ down to 7. I sure would love to hear feedback from David and the community. The URL is


  • Forgot to post the password. It is: movement08


  • ANNA B,

    Great to see the same event from your perspective.
    Good job!

  • DAVID,

    I am just back from a very enjoyable memorial week-end with the family in Chicago and I am trying to catch up on yet another very interesting long post…You just go out for a few days and, when you return, there are hundreds of comments to read…I do not know how you can keep up these days….

    Clearly, I realize that you have been a very busy man lately and this logically has not been your top priority but….you and I did not have a chance to reconnect on the edit that I have done of the Antigua Easter processions. You were going to let me know if you thought the work was “strong enough” to be used or if I should try to do another potential story. In any case, I would love to get your pov here if you get a chance to look at the work again (under “FINAL EDIT SEMANA SANTA” on my site with the edited pictures under Guatemala). In case you happen to like the edit, as I have read many comments regarding what you may or may not be using for Look3, let me know if you intend to use any of my previous work from last summer or if you think that Antigua could be a better topic to use…

    Separately, I just wanted to let you know that, just today (hot from the press!), I have made some initial headway on another story that I wanted to start NOW i.e boxing in the ghetto. I happen to have established a “good” contact with an “old-fashioned” coach, an Italian guy who is a local figure. He did train two local kids at the time who have made it to the Olympics in 92 for the US national team, Tim Austin and Bobby Lewis…one came back with the Gold, the other with a bronze medal… Coach Giovanni has now gone back to the roots, trying to bring up another generation of young boxers…The guy is doing what it takes to get the kids into the gym and is even organizing a van from the getto to get them off the streets to train and channel their overflow of energy into boxing… He is a real father figure to many kids who either have a father absent at home or simply gone…Biggest challenge for Giovanni is to keep these kids off trouble for long enough to allow them to train and become potential champions… Too often, many of them make the wrong decisions at the wrong time and boxing is over for them…. After establishing a contact with Giovanni, we have agreed that I can come anytime to shoot these kids. I will in particular try to follow up a young talented kid who has won the National Golden glove this year, who is just 17 years old and wants to make it to the 2012 Olympic games… 4 years at least to stay out of trouble!!!! seems like an eternity but the kid is committed…I will try to shoot him in training, in competition and hopefully in the ghetto…this may be the “way-in” that I was looking for…After talking late with Giovanni today, I did start to shoot for about 30 minutes (posted some images under “NEW Boxing in the ghetto” on my site)…nothing earth-shattering just yet, a bit too much “cliche” and I need to work at this A LOT more as there are already so many great images of boxing (including some from you David in Brazil)…So, please do not look at this as a complete essay…this is just a VERY VERY VERY early flavour done in half an hour…This is more to get a sense from you if you think it is worth pushing this story and if this could become an assignment for later (maybe next month as you are done I guess with your June assignments).

    Time to go to bed NOW or tomorrow, I will be a ghost at work….Hope to hear from you soon on Antigua…



  • Eric,

    I was curious to see your final edit and just took a peek.
    Looks amazing. Love it!

  • David,

    Its interesting the edit because you chose almost the same shots as I did…I tried to focus it how you proposed and Im really happy it was sort of how you saw it. Maybe theres hope for my editing yet…

  • david alan harvey


    my oh my girl, you really have been paying attention!! nice….

    very cool cool departure for you….well, actually, as per your own words , THIS IS THE REAL YOU!!!

    that was fun!! thanks….

    hugs, david

  • david alan harvey

    ANNA B.

    the only work i have seen of yours from Venice Beach is your most recent post…and from those i like # 2 and #3…..and you do not need more…those two say it all and are just the most striking images…the others are subject driven i.e. the subject itself is so dramatic that it can dominate…with little else to show…but the other two have a photographic power as well as subject power….anyway, just my opinion….

    and, oh yes, i will go back and try to find your other work….so easy to get behind on this forum…damn, who can keep up???

    so cool that you and Panos met….i was jealous of both of you…what fun!!

    cheers, david

  • david alan harvey


    very very strong strong day of work!! as i always say, i would cut it down to 4 or 5 of the strongest…but, i do not think we should edit you yet…it might strangle you…you need to stay loose…do not worry about “final product”…if i tell which ones are my favorite now, it will ruin everything…let’s wait for a few more shooting days to get an overall feel for where are going…the tough part for you will be to GROW inside a subject where you have already shot a lot…a lot of good work too…so this is your challenge…to go higher than before…much higher…a real push…total immersion…you should not even be here now..forget us for awhile and just go to work…sound fine for you???

    cheers, david


    this assignment burn me off. everthing goes wrong. People don’t want to be shooting. I ask 40-50 people for portrait. Nobody agree! any signge person. It almost statistic impossible!
    I almost loose my camera yesterday. This is not my “home” no more. My parents are in sycili but they (or he) not agree I stey in their house.
    so it is hard to “real push”
    I hate this fucking town.

    ok. I’m rush to bus.

  • Thanks, David. You’re right, that IS the real me, where my passion lies. I could have shown the festival & all the marvelous characters who show up, but I thought hard and realized I wanted to get INSIDE this music I love so much. I’d been dancing my bootie off before I took out my camera so the shots were made in a semi-tranced-out state. I hope that shows.

    Don’t want to be pushy but is there any chance they could be considered for the Look3 slideshow?


  • going to church or going to India( same thing)
    Brilliant, Panos!

    India is full of these people who despise their own christianity (ie. themselves), but go ballistic with a religion that practices apartheid for thousand years, venerates death over life, considers millions unworthy of the dust they walk on, and chastises women for being women. All the spirituality of India came to being not because India is a spiritual place, but on the contray, because it’s not.

  • david alan harvey


    i just had a good laugh….but it may not strike you the same way it hit me…but, anyway here goes:

    i was scrolling up a bit here and saw a comment from Marcin asking me “have you seen my new link yet?”

    now it was only a few hours before that when Marcin had posted his first link from his new assignment…it was like “David where in hell have you been?”

    but i laughed because it reminded me of one of my sons (at a very early age) asking me “daddy did you see me hit that ball?”

    i mean, i go offline to have dinner and hangout with a few friends, and Marcin is WAITING for my response!!

    now, Marcin please do not interpret any of this the wrong way…it is supposed to be either funny or poignant or both!!!

    but, you can see the problem….i mean, i have somehow ended up with a lot of responsibility here…like some kind of parent of a dysfunctional family that i have to keep going…i.e.trying not to pay too much attention to one of you more than the other etc etc…well, except for Cathy!!

    i mean the “drama” here sometimes seems like a sitcom show..right? or is it just me??

    but, here is how i look at it…smiling

    i look at this the same way i look at any relationship…

    “hey, we are here..wouldn’t be here if we didn’t want to be here”



    ’nuff said….

    gotta love you guys,


  • Well,

    Im uploading the shots you asked for David…finally…it feels like a relief now that they are on the way….

  • Oh, before I forget…is there anything else you want? Michael has the soundtrack…do you want me to write something from my perspective on the project? Are people doing anything like that? As far as what the project is or what its supposed to be in the future..thoughts, feelings, etc?


    YOUR TALENT IS … IT IS WHAT IS.. awesome…!!!


    ( eventually the house should be burned down , but not from
    anyone working or lurking in this particular blog… )

    ( moody interpretation preferred )

    …. not kiddin’
    DON’T GIVE UP…. unless Herve says so…!

  • so i didn’t get an assignment, and one came up that i just had to do….shitty shitty, but my house burned up and it was sort of therapeutic to go shoot it yesterday…took me about 2 weeks to go and do it…everything is just fine now so don’t nobody worry bout me…but have a looksee:


  • Sorry to hear that ,David R…!
    You have INNER STRENGTH… to be able to photograph…
    the “house”…
    right on


    This is the only Venice Beach work I’ve posted so far. I also met (and photographed) some 20 year old squatters who live in the Venice canals, which could be an interesting project for me.

    Panos and I shot all of the bodybuilding during a very intense 42 minutes. It was cool to shoot “tandem”… building upon one anothers’ access to climb further and further in. We worked the scene really well together. (It WAS fun!) We missed you though, and hope you’ll join us in California sometime soon.

    What you wrote about #2 and #3 (vs. the other subject-driven pictures) is very helpful. Thank you. I struggled, feeling obligated to cover the event, while hearing your voice (and finding it more interesting intuitively) to explore the edges.

    No rush on the EPF crit… just whenever you have time. Will post some squatter pictures in the next couple days…

    Anna B.

  • Wow, David R. What an assignment that you bravely took on. Bravo. The cat pic really sings. I agree with Panos — you have INNER STRENGTH! I send you good vibes!

  • David, you said you’ve got to laugh and I’m glad you can and it shows what a generous man you are. I love that you help all the people here but I have been watching the forum grow these last 6 months or so into what appears to be a job for you and am worried if you ever think you have created a monster and want to give it all up. You are a busy man with your own commitments, both personally and professionally, and yet you still do all this for us here. Please take a rest for yourself soon! And PEOPLE give David time to rest sometimes.
    I learn and work on my own style and images(authorship got to get some authorship apparently) with what you show and write here, and indeed with what others show and write – especially Bob, and hope, oneday, to improve enough to be part of the way the place is developing into a real working, published group with its own identity. But until then I don’t think I could be so possessive of you on YOUR forum as others sometimes are. When I get closer I will ask your opinion, politely without taking up any more of your valuable time than I have to because if you are going to shepherd our work we must make sure we won’t embarress you by getting it wrong but surely if we watch and learn more before posting every thought process we will get it right.
    Although the opposite seems to have worked for Panos whose latest work is great.
    Go figure.
    Just my 2 cents.
    Many Thanks once again

  • CATHY,

    Panos was as familiar to me as an old sweatshirt and was EXACTLY as I’d expected — warm, SENSITIVE, sincere and (as if I need to spell this out) refreshingly direct. Completely unexpected is that he’s a TALL guy — not as towering as DAH but pretty tall nonetheless. Hope this quenches your thirst for info. :)

    Anna B.

  • Hello all!

    Sorry rather of topic here, but wanted to make a suggestion. Is there any possibility of creating an area in the site for people to provide links to their work?

    I haven’t been able to get on line for a couple of days and wanted to check out work from those who were kind enough to look at mine and offer compliments and suggestions.

    Due to the huge activity on the blog (wonderful!!! of course!) if I miss out on a day or so it is sooo hard to catch up with any links provided (especially through a crappy internet connection) grrrr.

    Don’t know if this is even feasible?… but thought I would throw it out there… I realize it is important to keep up and log in regularly, I would if I could, but I (and i’m sure some others) just don’t have that basic luxury all the time.

    If there was one area to go to, it could save a lot of hassle. If this overall concept is too broad then maybe just a place for whoever is on a DAH assignment that month to post there links?? This would obviously change each month.

    Anyways, just a suggestion…


  • jchance

    great idea…Id love to see all the work develop over time…

  • David et al,

    As a strictly part-time and fit-it-in-around-‘real’-work photographer, random is what I do. Street photography primarily, where in some senses the purpose (OK: *a* purpose) is to rescue something from the unceasing randomness… In this respect, then, I don’t think I regard any photographs as ‘random’…but I do (always) see good, bad and indifferent photographs. Maybe ‘a photograph that doesn’t rise above its randomness’ is one definition of ‘bad photograph’?

    Whatever the case, I see nothing wrong whatsoever with random photographs!


  • DAH

    You are the most generous man with your time EVER! and I for one would like to thank you for creating this space I can come and hang out in when it all just gets too stressful in the real world!

    Its great to feel like I know some of the folk here and that they all share this great love for their work. It really inspires me to generate more ideas, gives me a space to voice my opinion on your points of view and is generally a lot of fun.

    Anyway thanks I appreciate what you are doing enormously!


    God thats awful news, are you and everyone else OK? Did you lose much of your photographic stuff? Was it insured? How are you holding up emotionally? Is there anything this little community can do to help?

    Take care, huh and chin up!

  • wow david ryder

    i’m so sorry to hear about the fire… that must be devastating… i hope you and your loved ones are ok?????… and i hope in some way you can replace the things you’ve lost…

    You are amazingly dedicated! I hope the photographs you took of you house was a cathartic experience for you. Fortunately, you didn’t loose your camera.

    I agree with your suggestion about finding a way to better organize the site and see other peoples’ portfolios. Maybe we should try to make things easier for DAH and explore the issue on our own and find possible solutions. There’s got to be some blog experts here. I also wonder if David would want to break the organic nature of the site. Sometimes when you try to find a solution to something you just create new problems, so maybe we are better off keeping it simple.

    We’re all here because we respect your work and extremely value your advice. You’re a mentor and you’re kind enough to do it online, so anyone in the world can participate. What a wonderful thing!

    That, of course, has it’s disadvantages. Do you know the Tragedy of the Commons? I hope so because YOU ARE THE COMMONS!

    A wikipedia definition is here (just in case):

    If I am at all responsible for contribuing to stressing you out, I sincerely apologize. You are doing a wonderful thing here. You should and I think you are being commended for it, so please don’t get frustrated with us. Just be clear about the ground rules. After all, it’s your game and everyone wants to play!

    Oh and one final question: Do you know of any family that is not dysfunctional?

    Ho ho!

  • David..i have been wanting to ask you this question: sometimes i have heard you mention about keeping the photographs ‘esoteric’…what do you mean by that? and is that some kind of a predominant photographic style…new one…? what?! :)
    thanks anyways..

  • DAVID R:….Wow, im so sorry to hear about your house…and god, you’ve got lots of strength or insight or kahuna’s or whatever to have such equanimity about it all…im sending you lots and lots of positive (with some dark shadowy contrast ;) ) light for you and your family!!…

    KATARINA: Kat, sent you an email…i think the old woman IS THE GUIDING POINT of this story…and for such a short essay (for a DAH assignment) you should include her, it’s the portraits that bespeak the swelling and swaying of what takes place before during and after what takes place in the rented rooms…you can send dah my thoughts: let that magisterial woman speak for all who want to see this story! :))…

    PAUL: I’m sorry to hear about the death and headaches and insane life…as a son of irish mom and grandparents, let me just remdind you that you wouldnt have a great life unless there werent tears and rage: that’s a sign the angels are on your side and time for a whiskey ;))…and the golden hair seraphim (your son) and that ball also a reminder :))

    ! :)))..let’s these men and women edit themselves ;))))))))))))…

    PANOS: amigo…while i also lothe the attitude of the privledged, and that would be you too, since it’s a big fucking priviledge to have the freedom to shoot, own a car, a leica, a frickin computer, its important to be careful about condeming folk (in this case Cathy) too easily or quickly from afar…we’re all fucked, we all are at a loss, and the better way is to for each of us to turn ourselves to wine for others, rather than to try to change others from on high…:))…sending u hugs..

    running running



  • Like Paul, the heading “Random” also hit home with me – a friend of my son was just killed by an out of control car, as he sat reading a book at a bus stop, waiting for his transfer on the way to work, age 17. It just defies…everything, really. My son’s girlfriend was also there, now in the hospital with recovery expected.

    This happened on saturday, and I shot at the church of my project on sunday, but it wasn’t a joyful shoot, more a dutiful one. I probably wouldn’t have gone but for it being a major day for the church, a procession in which we walked (talk about random) by the bus stop from which the kids left. By the end, though, I was glad to have been there — as something unexpected always happens, this time in a small, good way.

    Paul, I loved the photo of the kids chasing the ball in the evening light. Chasing happiness, into the dusk.


  • David Alan Harvey…

    Now I’M laughing! After your post above, almost all that followed was more scrambling for more of your attention, time and thoughts! Funny as hell. Though maybe not as much for you?

    Anyway, goes without saying…you DAH man!


  • Hey Bob,
    thank’s so much for the feedback..just replied. My thought :for a short website edit , no need … it’s too early… although she’ll be the ” voice”. …in the end this is a long term story,.not part of David’a monthly assignments….. keep in touch,kat,

  • david alan harvey


    you can relax for the moment…i only need your soundtrack ….text will be for this site later on…now i am just thinking about Look3 which requires no text from you …

    many thanks….you have been on top of this from the beginning..

  • BOB..
    we are not in the same page..
    I was talking in the name of the

    and you are talking in the name of the

    HUGE ,dangerous western style

    You see,
    an immigrant ( even the abused one )
    Is not necessarily “poor” ..
    you know why..?
    Because immigrants work harder to prove and
    get accepted.. They have to..
    overtime, overtime..
    immigrants built this country..
    SLAVES build this country..

    the ones I give voice..

    Not the poor.. FUCK THE POOR..
    just being poor means NOTHING to me..
    so just because I own a cellphone,
    an extra battery and a 50mm elmarit..
    doesn’t make me rich wealthy or WHITE..

    You make me feel sad today Bob
    crawling away..
    hopefully later I will post some

    Annaaaaa whats uppppppppp!


    I do not understand your interpretation from post above, but you know…. I have many “lost in translation”.

    here new today link.

  • Wow! What a brilliant place this is. Funny that I call it a place but in a way that’s exactly what it is. When I come here I’m always surprised. Each post and its comments fluctuate all over the map of thoughts, opinions, ideas and images. It’s stimulating in the extreme. In just a few lines my emotional response can range from angry to giddy. Who could ask for more?

  • Panos, reading your words quickens my pulse. Provocative. love it.

  • david alan harvey


    i do not see any problem with your work…you should not be frustrated…yes, we need to edit, but that is a nice “problem” to have….relax

    the “translation” from my post above with the story about you is: this forum is like a family…with all of the joys and ups and downs…you know i am a “family man” in every way..even online…you are part of this family…feel good, feel welcomed….

    ok, keep photographing…you are doing just fine….

    hugs, david

  • Another random offering while strolling in my local park;
    More later.

  • david alan harvey


    i think we need to take stock of where you are…i mean, you are working so so much and totally prolific and totally into it…i love this!!

    but, alas, i do not know where all of the Venice work is located…you have so many links…when i go to your site, i do not see it all..or am i not looking at it right??

    anyway, can you get everything on Venice in one place for me to see???

    if we had a slide show of your work, which music would you have running over it??

    like today, like now??? we must move fast….

    many thanks, david

  • david alan harvey


    do you have any interest in the immigrant issue? i can see your strong portrait style working so so well with this subject…not as a photojournalist, not Salgadolike , but in your own way…6 strong images mas o menos…think about it….

  • Panos: amigo…no, im talking ABOUT BOTH…im from a family of immigrants, my wife is an immigrant, my son…i am one too here…more later..


  • david alan harvey


    you are on to something here…keep going

    LINDA O.

    yes, i love that self portrait in BKK……pink woman, pink car…..now, you need to make your other work sing in the same way…you might want to take the self portrait approach further…does this interest you??

    cheers, david

  • david alan harvey


    i am not stressed out at all…if i were stressed out, i would not walk over to the keyboard….and, yes, all families are somewhat dysfunctional…i was laughing as i was writing…not complaining, just musing….

  • david alan harvey


    yes, i too would love to hear of an easy way where all links would be in one place…

    i did have one post where i said “post ideas and links here”, but nobody did it..they just kept going to the next posting and we all get lost….

    once assignments are done, it will be easy to publish them here, perhaps one at a time with the text…maybe all together…we will see…

    but, if you or anyone can think of an easy way to see “work in progress” that would be terrific….

    cheers, david

  • DAVID…

    Just a quick question about Look3 and Charlottesville – I probably missed some info here, things have been a little crazy lately. I will be there, but what is the deal with the slideshow? Who is in and what day is it happening? I’m really excited for it!

    Glad to catch you ever so briefly on your roof two week back…

  • a bite of the apple
    this eden
    all be damned
    once sung
    Further is a bitch with a bone

  • david alan harvey


    damn!!! i just looked at your work from your house fire….compelling pictures…too bad they came from such a personal disaster…similar actually from the pictures we saw in the fall from Alex R…..we are all relieved that you are fine at least…keep us posted on your welfare please…


    honestly, i do not think you have quite enough for a slide show…i do like this work very much, but if we actually started editing they would come down to probably 4 pictures or so without repeating yourself..so i see your dance pictures as a significant “starting point” for more!!!

    please remember what i always emphasize..take those pictures..edit them down tight…forget them!!! at least temporarily…then, go do more!!

    you are a woman with a great attitude and enthusiasm for life…let’s build on this….let’s come up with a THEME that will let you fly!!

    the “bar” for Look3 has gotten very high!!

    before i show work from a photographer i am mentoring i only have one thing in mind…the impression that photographer will make…and first impressions are so so important..i must do photographers a favor by making sure each one looks his/her best..let’s wait a bit….

    BUT, photographers have the amazing ability to do great work in a short period of time…Katharina did all of that terrific BKK work in about 2 days…the “pressure” of a workshop does that…i cannot create quite that atmosphere on line…much much harder…but anyway, we are giving it a shot…

    try another night or two of dancing…maybe you can come in right “under the wire”…if not, we will “save you” for the next time around….

    cheers, david

  • david alan harvey


    i have not finished the slide show…doing it now….i will post the slide show here at some point right after Look3….but there will be about 10 photographers represented from my “community” here…

    photographers should make me aware of their work any way they can…either with a link or by submissions later in the year for the EPF…now we are doing assignments, which has really gotten the ball rolling….

    obviously everyone wants to be in the slide show…not everyone can be…however, the power of the show will bring even more editors to our site which means perhaps more funding for grants , but mostly just a good crowd of editors, curators, photographers etc who log on here and know they can find some good work by emerging photographers…

    i hope to see you again soonest….

    cheers, david

  • david alan harvey


    hey dude, missing you…what you do??? new work??

    cheers, david

  • DAVID:

    Glad to hear it!

    The problem with email, the internet and cyber chat conversation is that there is no TONE, so miscommunications can happen easily.

    As far as “posting ideas and links here,” I’ll do some digging on James’ idea because I agree with him. I’d like to see the work of other posting here. I think it would help build more of a sense of community.

    Keep on musin’.

  • DAVID R.

    What happened??? An electrical fire? SO sorry! You certainly seem to have a great additude about it to be out photographing and posting here in the midst of it all.

    Hope whatever you have to deal with goes smoothly and turns out well.


    Hi, if my message with the link was “lost in translation” before here we go again:


    I will be glad if you can take a look and comment.

    All the best!
    Ari B.

  • Paul, yes, never mind the lens, that shot of the kids chasing the ball, wonderful, and it almost can be felt live, the ball rolling as we look.

    Bob, Katharina, old woman?!?!? Did I miss something, I tried to look in your “rented room” gallery, not sure what it’s all about. It’s such a loaded subject, I hope you will give it a new, unmisleading angle, Katharina (well, I don’t even know what the subject is).

  • DAH,

    Not sure what to make of your comment about me!!! Hope it was meant in the same context as what you were saying to Marcin (humor.)

    I’m better off not commenting about that :)) but I do have a communication for you from JULIA DEAN WORKSHOPS…

    I called them when I saw info posted here by Panos that you will be teaching a workshop there in the Fall. I asked for dates since I will be in Socal as of mid October and they said they have not nailed down dates for you…they have been having difficulty getting in touch with you and need to speak with you.

    I said I knew where to find you and would pass the message along!

  • I just want to make sure I don’t miss the show! I’ll be in Charlottesville and it seems like a pretty nice opportunity to meet people known only virtually.

    If anyone is in DC this evening, come out for my own slideshow event: I’ll be screening some images set to music in between live musical acts at Busboys and Poets, 2021 14th St. NW. Show starts at 9pm sharp! $8 at the door…

    A sampling of my recent U.S./Mexico border work for everyone (more to be seen tonight): http://www.brendanhoffman.com/borderbw

  • DAVID,

    Music/ SOUNDTRACK ..

    THE DOORS , Jim Morrison


    All the links are in one page.
    I’m driving right now..
    can anyone help me and post ANY
    then go on top of the page and see more..
    any link.. Maybe 10-15 links…
    just ignore the movies…links..

    Otherwise you can go in any previous
    page on your blog..
    and then click in ANY of the links I provided..
    bodybuilding or whatever..
    then on top of any page you will see all links..
    All in one place..

    Should I edit myself or wanna help???

    Anyways when I get out of this car..
    I will repost the links..
    I’m excited.. Two more new links from venice
    coming up later on…


  • Herve,
    ” rented room ” ? Sorry, there;s no captions yet… …… The old woman I met during the second trip… very striking face ( and life story ) ,but she doesn’t fit into a short presentation…..

  • ALL:

    Thinking about the “tips and suggestions” box, what about encouraging people to post their site link or their latest work link each time they post?


    Sounds a bit laborsome but the other options would require putting links up on the blog and more work for DAH.

    Just musin’

  • DAVID,

    Here’s a link that’ll connect you to Panos’ 23 ( ! ) Venice threads. Use your Safari browser.



    It’s great to see you here!

    I took a quick look at your site. Which one is the BKK story?

  • Hi Charlie,
    second under ” NEW”..but it’s work in progress…not finished….

  • Salut,

    I finally decide myself and drop a short note on this blog. I’ve been reading it for a while now and must admit it has opened up my photographic spectrum a lot, whatever that means. The only problem I have with this forum is that the pace at which articles and comments are written goes way too fast for me … I’m lagging behind in terms of reading and I therefore apologize for introducing a thread with comments which are not necessarily relevant to it. The reason why I pop in now is that I’ve just returned from a trip in Amazonia bringing back some pictures. I was supposed to attend my first workshop in Iquitos (Peru) but it was cancelled at the last minute. Since I was first drawn to the area by Webb’s book ‘Amazon’ and by the movie ‘ Diaro de motocycleta’, I decided to keep my schedule and just went there. My idea was to take a slow boat from Pucallpa to Iquitos and shoot daily life … I am not yet ready to shoot essays so I basically just hang around, meet people and shoot when I feel like it … random pictures ? Perhaps ??? … anyway I came back from that trip half-disappointed by the ‘ work’ I did … as always I thought I could have pushed myself a lot more … still my friends and relatives were satisfied … well, although I appreciate their comments, I can’t help thinking these are biased because of our relationship !!! … so here I am, writing to this blog seeking advices and comments from people I don’t know but with whom I share a passion for photography … I feel I just need a big kick in the ass to continue shooting more than just two weeks per year (during my vacation) … surely your critics, all kind of critics, will be the push I need … cool if you have some time to look at the below edits (First time I ever do that … what a pain … I’m very bad with technology so I hope the links work ) … Tchao. Romain

    final edit


    3d edit


  • David,

    I leave today for a day at a Hutterrite colony … hoping for more than a day. We’ll see. Spending a week in the broader community … smallest incorporated town in the state, pop. 50, with a gun club/bar and with the colony nearby, pop. 140. Old world meets new … all the same world.

    Okkaaaayy … nix that. I’ll go to the colony next week. Weird … Mag called while writing this, wants a “more artistic” take on a cycling event happening in two days. Maybe cover. Huh … just lost work from a newspaper for being “too artistic.” Now I’m nervous. Perhaps you really don’t have to pander after all ;-)

    What kind of energy are you channeling there David? I’ll take more with two sugars, hold the cream.


  • David

    I’m not frustated at all. I can’t be. Always when I discover something new in my photography I have new power to work. As you know I always try satysfy myself first. It is not mean that I’m satysfy from this photos. No at all. Never. But I have new idea. Here in wroclaw.
    I have been waiting for warm days long time and now I want work more than ever.
    Only my “hometown” frustrated me. I feel sadness. but ok. no more talking about.

    In “famili” are always misunderstanding. It is normal. No problem.

  • Romain, I dont think you have to apologize for bringing up topics that arent wholly germane to the thread. I have done this myself on more than one occasion; witness, for example, my screed on the utility of using parrots for inexpensive root canal work; and I’ve been thinking of following through on this theme with another dealing with the recent spate of violent xenophobic parrots attacking young vampires. Nothing about these two related themes has anything to do with DAH’s theme of randomness in photography and yet I dont think anyone will complain about my wandering off the subject of the thread to explore the philosophical possibilities presented by these themes. So bring up the mosquitoes in Iquitos as much as you want.

  • david alan harvey


    i am confused…what did you want us to do?? just overall comments on your website??? or did you have a proposal?? let me know….

  • david alan harvey


    your photos do not open on Flickr for me….

    yes, this blog goes too fast for me too!!!!

    cheers, david

  • what about encouraging people to post their site link or their latest work link each time they post?
    That’s pretty much what we have now, Charles. What about, david, using one of the least used sections of your blog.

    You just said we are a family (Tell me i am not just the obnoxious next door neighbour talking too loud!), why not open make a post there where only links of new work will be posted, with maybe just one line of reference. No discussion, no answering, just the link, and all within one titeled post from you?

  • David,

    As I told I am very bad with the tech stuffs … aie, aie aie, … I’ll try to figure out how flickr works and come back here asap.


  • My typing is getting seriously fucked, sorry.

    so very simply:

    Just in the family section, an entry for new links only.

  • Akaky,

    xenophobia = rascism … and … vampires = us sometimes i think here on this blog … and parrots, well we all know that that portends … so to that extent you are just pandering to the off topic topic and reemergence of the classic Panos rant and the “look at me” sidebar of David, you are ultimately proving the point that there is nothing random. Again, all on topic my pernunctious friend. You cannot fool me :))

  • ok.. DAVID, MICHAEL C..
    Anna B thank you for posting my
    latest link..

    Now.. I have couple more Venice links
    for later to show..
    but as Anna noticed I already have
    23 links up..23 little stories that
    adds up to the “WHOLE”..
    where do I go from here…

    Music.. The Doors/ Riders on the storm..

    please guide me how to get done with this..
    because I’m still shooting..
    I’m obssessed with Venice ..
    I CANT STOP.. Still accelerating ..
    HELP ME STOP .. Please
    should I stop or just

  • marcin łuczkowski



  • David,
    I think that would be pretty cool. probably would take a couple of weeks. also I would like to think about what aspect of the immagration flight that I would shoot. I have wanted to shoot farm workers for some time now, portraits, like you mentioned. but then there is also a the urban approach. I will need to think a little about this, could shoot many differents aspect and combine.
    whats the time line. when would you want to see the results.

  • Panos brother! You have 23 links/galleries/stories…I’ll bet David would prefer 23 images.

    Can you dig deep and pull out 20 of your best from all those links, and place those 20 best images in one gallery?

  • Panos, don’t stop until you fall down BUT perhaps you could put the best all together in one spot – call it Panotopia :))

  • david alan harvey


    ok, sure…i love Riders in the Storm and it goes with your work…but, can’t we get all your new Venice work in one place???? i do not mind editing from many, but somehow i have to see it..some way better than me going back thru your 23 links!!!!

    but, of course do not stop shooting now…but let me please get at least some idea of where you are overall….

  • david alan harvey


    no hurry…we could have you set for the next round of assignments..take your time and think about it…

  • MARCIN.. You? .. My “fan”??
    then fuck it.. I will never stop..

    I’m afraid you are right..
    if we start editing my shit it will take
    forever ..
    its just that I don’t wanna dissapoint
    David’s efforts by choosing.. the wrong
    its his effort to collect funds for the future..
    next month, more photographers, more assignments..
    I feel partly responsible to honor, follow,
    this is just the beggining for ALL OF US..
    I’m attached with some photos..
    but I’m not sure that are the strongest ones..

    love that name..
    reminds me of MAJOR TOM..
    sense of humor, style , cool..
    I don’t know you yet..
    but I will..
    you sound like a super cool CAT…

  • david alan harvey


    ok, i could open your work this time….

    i looked at the second set which seemed to be almost the same as the first set…???????????????

    anyway, too too too many pictures!!! but, in there are some very good ones…but, you must be careful not to try to imitate Alex Webb…we already have Alex!!! being influenced by him is one thing…literally copying him is another…i understand this and it is normal, but you must move away in your own way…

    saludos, david

  • david alan harvey


    hey dude, please give credit where credit is due!!

    i named Young Tom…..you knew him before as something else…see if you can guess

  • ok, DAVID..
    I’ll do this tonight..
    I will post all in one link..
    no fancy explanations.

    I’ll make it easy..
    and I will “PRE EDIT”..
    even if I skip something ..
    I’ll take the risk..
    I’ll do the job..
    maybe like MICHAEL K SAID..
    one photo from each link..

    Ok, tonite
    hit the gas

  • marcin łuczkowski


    you need website. You have great pictures. You should show them by better way.
    very nice photos.


  • TOM HYDE..

    Laughing.. Like a maniac..

    That’s my boy Tom..
    I thought I could keep up..
    this is like a sitcom or
    comedy radio show..

    I’m fucking proud to be here..
    thank you ALL..

  • … laughing … i am stuck with it now! and i was once named “jesus tom,” my “boat name” … long story, long hair, very sacriligious …

  • david alan harvey


    ok yes right!!!

    do not edit too too much….and here is what we should do i think…send me the link as you described…i will make a rough edit…then run it by you to see what you think…

    i am not promising you piece of the Look3 show, but that is why i want to see your work right now…i know you are not finished….you are on a roll and you should stay on a roll..if we cannot get you edited in time for Look3, there are still venues coming up for us to show more…

    anyway, if you understand my thinking on this and do not be disappointed if i cannot get you in the show or if i think you will be better served by waiting for the next venue, then all is cool…ok by you????

    i am sure you know that my intent is to have you blast us all off the map with your Venice work!!!

    but, let’s make sure we do it right…fair enough???

    peace, hugs, david

  • absolutely.. Right..

    I see life just like I see my drivers licence..


    Plus I never hoped for Look3..
    I knew from the very beginning
    that there are at least 10-15 photographers
    From last years assignments..
    ( SEAN, BOB, MARCIN to name a few..)
    that deserve to be in the show, since they
    were the finalists..

    ANYWAYS , this is not the OSCARS..
    and thank you all for the attention
    you paid on my VENICE WORK..
    and I promise everyone that I won’t stop
    recording the “microcosmos”
    of Venice ..
    I don’t think I can stop anyways..

  • David, I totally understand about the Look3 slideshow. After all, I’m very much a newbie here, but more than that I think I’m just finding my voice. Enthusiasm & high energy are two personality traits I’ve always had, yet they’re only just beginning to show up consistently in my work. I can now see where I’ve been too cerebral. Well, enough of that shit! It’s time to fly!!!

    I’m still editing my Detroit Electronic Music Festival photos and have just posted another small gallery (6 pix). The URL is


    Password: movement08

    Thanks, David, for taking the time to look at my stuff and give me such encouraging feedback.

    Regarding where I go from here I’ve gotten the OK to begin taking photos of the seniors at a downtown Detroit Senior Learning Center. I’m very much looking forward to taking portraits of folks in their 70s, 80s & 90s dancing the hustle, gardening, bowling & making art. A bit different from the crowd at the Electronic Music Festival but equally full of life!


  • Hi, David. Would you be so good as to consider some of these images for Look3? Many thanks.


  • david alan harvey


    where are you??

    two things:

    i want to give you an assignment, but i do not know where your interest is at the moment…so tell me please what would be your choice…

    i will include you in the Look3 show, but i want to know if you have anything else you want me to see from your original project….you have enough already, but just wanted to check to make sure you are pleased with the final result…

    all best wishes, david

    I think it looks great, honestly! You have the right use of subdued colors which go perfectly with the mood. What’s the story though? Prostitution? Sex with minors? Or just damn, Bangcock! That would be a great follow-up to PUNK-WOK! I look forward to seeing your final edit!

    You’re not the only one having problems writing today. I meant like a signature in someone’s email messages AND everytime you post. Presently we’re not doing that. I’ll do it at the bottom of this posting so you know what I mean.

    David’s idea here is that editors would look at people’s work here. If you were an editor and you wanted to look at someone here, wouldn’t you want to find their work quickly? They’re not going to read 100 comments a day, so our job is to make it as easy for them as possible. I hope others agree.

    Also can you post one of your links? I wanted to look at your stuff last week and had no idea where to look. I would have googled HERVE, but I don’t think that is your real name;-)


  • Thanks David. Here’s an oldie from 2004 which started something new. Still trying to figure out what that something is.


  • Akaki,

    No mosquitoes in iquitos … but lots of ‘bzzzz’ noises from the numerous ‘mototaxistas’ … noise polution is quite a thing there … difficult to picture though … hmmm perhaps I could have tried … thanks for easing me …


    I guess most of all strive to find their own style and that probably comes with time and work … before you eventually get there your images are probably the unconscious sum up of all the pictures you’ve liked and recorded … your comments are fair and i am not surprised … I will go back to the first pictures I did some 10 years ago when I had a ‘ virgin ‘ eye and was not aware of any other photographers’ work … that my give me some more insight on what my own style could be than my current pictures … hasta luego


    Wasn’t it you who were supposed to go to Marocco? I’ve been away from this blog for a while and my memory is not always good, so I might be wrong … If I’m right, then I would be interested to see your work. Tcho.

    I reinforce the previous comments about a website for your work man! Adding one suggestion I also took to myself (still learning…): It’s hard some times but it’s editing. Cut without mercy to the best!
    BTW, I’ve opened the galleries without problems.

    Sorry about my poor english…
    First it was really an introduction to my portfolio but I do have a proposal, actually two: Catadores (Recycling garbage collectors, Scavangers. Migrants to the big cities without work perspective, collecting recycling materials to survive. Much more involving their daily routine – drugs, slavery, etc.)
    Offshore workers (oilfield exploration) – I’m among them, registering the diversity of languages and cultures “living” onboard an oil rig. All started in Angola and is continued now in Nigeria.
    Well, I’m still looking for new angles on these stories…
    And just a question: Already have a schedule for the NY workshop in October?

    ANNA B.,
    Thanks for your contact. Again, would suggest more B/W`s , I also liked the no. 2

    For you too: I loved the B/W’s!

    I left a post in you site. Waiting for the multimedia files!

    Will send you an email.

    All the best!

  • david alan harvey


    ok, i just looked at your link…you do have some good single pictures here, but i do not think they are suitable for an essay oriented slide show…

    all of the shows for Look3 will have a theme or have aesthetic form….as far as i could see, one picture was not connected in any way with the other by either theme or journalistic intent..did i see it right??

    i will work with you in the future to help you think about themes, stories or just a sequence with unity…

    cheers, david

  • Charlie

    Charlie…!?!?….but that’s the link that shows already in:

    Posted by: Charlie Mahoney | May 28, 2008 at 03:53 PM …

    for stuff:

    Be warned: it’s merely vacation stuff…;-)

  • david alan harvey


    thanks for having such a good attitude..this alone will take you far….

    let’s stay in touch on your future work…

    by the way, i took the boat from Iquitos to Manaus for an NG magazine assignment last year…i recognized some of the towns where you were , including one of the markets…great trip i thought.

    saludos, david

  • david alan harvey


    would you consider changing the music for your show?? i was just listening to your choice of the Beatles piece “Ob La Di, Ob La Da” and looking at your photographs..just does not seem to fit in my opinion….

    why not something a little more mysterious, sensual, and intriguing??? something Korean too obvious?? another thing to think about…this will run by fairly quickly, so it is either better to have instrumental only or a song where the key words kick in immediately…

    let me know what you think…

  • HERVE:

    Ok I’m going to just shut-up, NOW!

    I had no idea that if you clicked on someone’s name, the link showed up. Strangely though, not everyone has that link. Now I wonder if an editor would know that.

    You have a lot of good material in there. Yeah, it’s travel, but that’s okay. There’s nothing wrong with that. Why not try to put together an edit of your best travel work and put up a gallery on lightstalkers to start? Or maybe your own web site? It depends on your goals, but it would be a good start.

  • ROMAIN!!!!

    A look at your shots, and like David intimates, once you find your voice (a WS with him would send you off to the moon! Is what I thought) you should be rocking, BUT:

    How could you leave the pix called #29 out of the final edit?!?!? COOOME ON!!!!! ;-)

  • David,

    My near future work will be editing my dusty old B&W Ilford negatives … mostly family and friends pictures … that may take take a while before I find them … I’ll let you know once I got something to show …

    Arie, Marcin,

    I hear you well guys … although I thought I had already taken a big step forward with flickr … I’ll think of it. Thanks for your advices.

    Time to leave the place for me. Bonne continuation.

  • I know it’s Okay, Charlie ;-), just a distant, unaudible quip to Panos’s old smirk that travel is vacation….. Unless someone writes a foreword for your, ohlala! travel photography book, I guess…:-)))

    Fuck you, Panos! :-)))))

    I really don’t like LS, frankly (I have a very short gallery there, forgot to nix it). I hate all this “press pass” “pro here!” whatever, pretense that comes out of browzing the site. And where there’s no humour, there’s no me. Maybe a perception…

    Nothing for now from me. I intend to learn from all of your guys mistakes first! :-)))

  • RAFAL,

    For some reasons, I was not yet familiar with your work. I just looked at the most recent links you have provided and could not agree more wur family work is great and very poignant… You and Erica have both a unique way of capturing subtle emotions, feelings, Erica more with her portraits but you can feel the humanity in both your pictures…Anyway, I thought it was great and do not know why I had missed it!

    Separately, I do not know if I have missed a link but I have been tring to look at the work of J Chance as well as Katherina that both have received a lot of warm feedback from the group here but I could not make the link to work in case of James and I could not even find the link at all in the case of Katherina… Would love to get the links….I know that some suggested already having the links of all the team on assignment in an easy place…this is a great idea!

    Finally, the disfunctional kid from the disfunctional family is intrigued to know what his disfunctional father thinks of Antigua edit but he has realized that he needs to be patient :):):). Just joking David, no rush!!!… It is more important that you provide feedback to the team currently on assignment….these guys are producing as we speak and we all look forward to the final edits/ work.



  • Most photographers random pictures are garbage as they are self indulgent and without intention. They also then tend to think that the images are better than they actually are…

    Self discipline also falls apart in the form of an inability to guage what is “good” and what is “bad” in their own work. The editing then fails as they show too much and cannot get rid of the rest…

    I think that intention is needed and even then, fierce editing to pull out the best of what is left after the fierce editing…

    Random images should be kept largely to one self unless one builds up the self discipline and skill to know what is truely of value…

  • Salut Herve,

    I just saw your comment so I can’t help dropping a last note before going to bed.

    I was very happy with No 29 at first, but then I thought the picture would have been better if I had closed the frame at the top to avoid the horizon line with boats … but not time to think about framing when I took this picture … A +

  • ERIC:

    James Chance’s is:http://www.jameschance.com/

    And Katharina’s is:http://www.katharinahesse.com

    Both sites are flash so sometimes you have to be a bit patient while they load.

    buenas noches,

  • dr .. can’t help to agree on many points, and i certainly have those problems, and much of what you say has been said here before, but hey, comes across as pretty arrogant in the presentation … certainly grabbed my attention though. We are not all as accomplished, self disciplined, or as smart as you are … but we keep trying. Sorry, was that irritating? ;-)

  • PANOS, whoever else is interested…

    An aspect of the immigration/construction story here in New Mexico you may not be aware of is that MOST ALL of the subcontractors in town are not illegal or even necessarily Mexican. They are HISPANIC LOCALS…NEW MEXICANS whose families have lived in this area for many generations. Most are related… The painter is a cousin of the plumbers (a father and his two sons.) The electrician went to school with the bricklayer, etc. A close knit group of locals..many whose ancestors came here from Spain.

    The Native Americans were here first. The Spanish came in the 1500’s and later, in 1821 New Mexico became a province of Mexico. So it’s an eclectic group here…one of the many reasons I love it so much.

  • David– Thanks for your very kind words! Yes, the self portrait approach does interest me, however do I need to have my reflection in on every shot or can the work be reflective of myself like in this new post?


  • KATHARINA: :))…Kat, sent an email :)))) (you dont look too stressed ;)) )…wrote u long :))…sent u m’s email too…if you want, i can later write here what I wrote in email: it would make for an interesting discussion: ’cause i think lots would benefit/be interested in what the whole “old woman” is about…:))…but, it’s brilliant work and especially since i know it’s larger, more important than just the hotel room stuff :))…hugs

    DAH: David, just in case Kyung-hee is off/away, she mentioned something to me about doing about a ceremony: was it children’s day, parents day, Buddha’s day or some religious celebration…I cant remember..but, i think that was her plan :)) (ok, do i get paid for being dah blog assistant??) ;)))…

    HERVE: :)))..damn, King, you take better “vacation shots” then me, for sure :))…u are so right about LS…but it wasnt always that way, believe me…what i dig about here (and u) is that it is filled with thoughtfulness, humour, foul language, argument, respect, ass kissing (well, i dont dig that, but i guess that’s part of life ;) ), intelligence, good shit (photography) bad shit (photography), debate all that :)))..and im with you: travel aint vacation….travel is life:…u gotta read (Panos too) BRUCE CHATWIN’S SONGLINES


    ok, i gotta go…

    I cant keep up with y’all…got work to do, and more importantly, gota wife and limited time on computer (im now 1 hr dude/ per day)…



    ps. DR: i left you a love note last time you surface here (2 months ago?)…im glad u’re hear…re-watched lynch’s inland empire (2nd time for me) saturday: u gotta thrive that flick DR :)))…glad u r here!!

  • david alan harvey

    LINDA O.

    no, i don’t think you need a reflection every time…you should interpret broadly…


    hey man, if i had the money, for sure i would pay you!!! this is your territory….i just keep the wheels greased, you drive the train!!


    yes, the Santa Fe area is rich in culture…so shoot it!! ok, you are not Salgado, but why not give it a try?? how can you beat either the immigration story which is right out your front door or go on down to Española and Truches and hang for awhile….

    cheers, david

  • DAH: “the garage sale concept is going to be difficult, but i think eventually very interesting…”

    Difficult indeed (at least harder than I thought) but as the serendipity that you speak of has taken it’s course, I think I’ve settled on things more specific.

    DAH: “i think your whole idea is to show consumerism run amok…too many people with too many “things””

    I had that thought, but it’s not so much a story about materialism, but more about struggling people (as a result of our economy) who decide there are items they can part with to make ends meet. Or those who have to sell luxury items because they can’t put fuel in them anymore. Plus just stopping by yard sales is hit or miss in terms of this purpose, so I’m having more success finding people selling specific things for specific reasons. A majority of the garage sales are still just for spring cleaning.

    DAH: “you are going for this in black & white, which is fine, but maybe you would get a feeling of the eclectic nature of garages full of unwanted items by combining color and b&w”

    May just stick with B&W. High sun and haze leaves colors pretty flat (in the land of vinyl siding) so colors tend to be unflattering before 5pm when most of the sales close.

    DAH: “you have picked one of those subjects where it is easier to describe in words than pictures…a common problem for many…”

    That’s true. I think many felt that way about (Sean’s?) desertification. Or at least that was highly dependent on the story.

    Anyway, here’s the latest:


    And some new stuff has been added to these:



    Party on,

    David M

  • Bob B, Panos & Anton– A couple of blogs back you guys were super generous with your “Blues lyrics” praises. Was away for a couple of days and by then the blog had way moved on, but it’s been bugging the xxxx out of me so I gotta say THANK YOU!

    Panos– Panotopia is definitely the right title for your Venice Beach show / book!

  • david alan harvey


    i have never seen your work before, but i was quite impressed with much of it…your site was a little hard to use, but the pictures were compelling enough to make me keep going…

    you certainly have INTENT , which is where so many go wrong…

    anyway, i will go for your work…period… what you wrote is true even if not so diplomatically phrased in the opinion of our Young Tom…thanks for stopping by…..come again…

    cheers, david

  • dR–

    holyshit!! i’m really impressed with your work!
    (album ‘creep’ and those after)
    too many photos though.
    but WHOA.
    i’m impressed.
    (and that’s getting harder and harder to do)

    hope you stick around.


  • Im thinking about another song for my soundtrack…the other idea which might also fot the theme of me being a sort of watcher in my house would be The Spy, by the Doors. Im sure panos loves this song… LOL

    I’m a spy in the house of love
    I know the dream, that you’re dreamin’ of
    I know the word that you long to hear
    I know your deepest, secret fear
    I’m a spy in the house of love
    I know the dream, that you’re dreamin’ of
    I know the word that you long to hear
    I know your deepest, secret fear
    I know everything
    Everything you do
    Everywhere you go
    Everyone you know

    I’m a spy in the house of love
    I know the dream, that you’re dreamin’ of
    I know the word that you long to hear
    I know your deepest, secret fear
    I know your deepest, secret fear
    I know your deepest, secret fear
    I’m a spy, I can see
    What you do
    And I know

  • Charlie,
    the topic is prostitution….the original idea was to document the private life of a prostitute……. unfortunately my subject disappeared at the beginning of the workshop…so we took a look at the short-time hotels ( plus portraits of customers and their women) instead…have come back now to the private life idea …..

    it’s fine with me..just replied….but isn’t David tired of all these discussions ?

    aren’t you tired of us ?

  • ok

    DAVID , ALL..


    1) COLOR… link


    2) B&W…. link


    headache… already… i give up…
    judge me please….
    Im exhausted…


    “PANOTOPIA” -Young Tom (though I liked the old one awfully much!) you crack me up-to the sound track of “Riders on the Storm” is a must see I think!

    KATHARINA I don’t reckon DAH gets tired otherwise I am sure he would have given up ages ago!

    ALL I am really excited about the new stuff I am doing too! Yipee finally something I really care for again. Will post it somewhere really soon!

    YOUNG TOM I love the sound of the community you were going to shoot. Whats that about?

    JAMES CHANCE brilliant work! I love your stuff!

  • LISA …
    thank you…
    dont you prefer this one ??? OVER the “Riders on the storm”

    Jim Morrison – The Doors – Whiskey Bar / Alabama Song

    Hey Rafal… again … GREAT WORK..!!!

  • HEY PANOS!!!!!!!

    tell you what- if you cut down your rough by half and then by half again- so you say had about maybe 20-30 shots all up- then I reckon I could help you cut it down by half again and then I could tell you what Doors song works best. I reckon I know just about every Doors song by heart, and at the moment the edit is looking definitely like Homer Simpson’s interpretation of the life of the Lizard King!

    You have got so many possibilities in there, some really great shots (girls in the cage/dickchin) I reckon there is some real crap thats just not worthy (same old shit) and you should be able to pluck them out before anyone else has to look-otherwise as much as it is ‘PANOTOPIA” it is also “PANDEMONIUM”. I like the concept but execution is everything!

    Hope you don’t mind my two cents, I know you have the soul of an artist so its just searching out the things that really make me think ah, yeah only Panos could take that shot. Sorry if you think I am jumping in but if I might be able to help.

  • Lisa,

    are you a doors fan too?
    have a look http://www.flickr.com/photos/jinju/sets/72157605200281736/

    and tell me if you think The Spy (Doors) or Obladi Oblada works better…I originally chose Obladi oblada but Im thinking The Spy might be better……

  • cool, cool, cool, LOVES IT… as Paris would say..
    Thank you LISA… I like YOU…You are so much fun…
    i mean fresh… cool… e.t.c… smiling

  • Rafal, I do not understand. You show us intimacy and you come up with a song about stalking, or spying, even if metaphorically speaking.

    How about “the crystal ship”, one of my favorite Doors song. A beautiful love song (not sure where Grandma fits in there though!)

    Panos, riders of the storm, come on man, there’s is no storm in your pix!!! I say:

    Break on thru to the other side. That’s what you did, you went to the other side of VENICE, beyond the surface.

    try to run
    try to hide
    Break on thru to the others side….

  • thanks guys for sending those positive vibes as I recover from my house fire…how can you help? keep sending your thoughts!

    dont know how it started…electrical probly…

    it has been a trip and really has got me thinking…like the burning man festival, i feel almost renewed and this is a time of big ‘rebirth’ for me as i move states in 2 weeks for a new job at a paper in utah…

    i lost a lot of shit, like everything, including digital archives and negatives…so sad…that’s the only ‘stuff’ i care about…all the other things are just things…and covered by insurance anyway…so back up your stuff people! my backup hard drives were in the same room as my laptop…don’t make the same mistake as i did! keep your backups at work or a friend’s place

    but hey…i still have my eye and my creativity…thank god i am safe and sound…able to make pictures and read DAH’s blog

  • Panos your venice shit is the shit. no shit.

  • Herve,

    yeah…though literally…am I the stalker? Or my camera? Thats the way I was thinking when that song popped in my head…although I never took The Spy to be about stalking more about watching…..
    Crystal ship is great, too

    Before you slip into unconsciousness
    Id like to have another kiss
    Another flashing chance at bliss
    Another kiss, another kiss

    The days are bright and filled with pain
    Enclose me in your gentle rain
    The time you ran was too insane
    Well meet again, well meet again

    Oh tell me where your freedom lies
    The streets are fields that never die
    Deliver me from reasons why
    Youd rather cry, Id rather fly

    The crystal ship is being filled
    A thousand girls, a thousand thrills
    A million ways to spend your time
    When we get back, Ill drop a line

    OTHER possibilities (Let’s stay with the Doors)

    My Eyes have seen you
    Wintertime Love
    Wishful sinful

  • dope!!!
    Panos, rock lyrics are always co-opted for whatever use people wish to.
    (I tried to call U today. Can’t believe your phone was off!!!)

    BTW, PDN annual 2008 is out:



    definitely NOT Obloody Obloody-ha (sorry I always hated that song!)

    Your shots are gorgeous and speak of such an unsentimental trust- I am thinking that song by the Yeah, Yeah, Yeah’s would be better. No I don’t think Jim Morrison & the Doors fits at all, he was really f*&^%@ up and the music was Fellini-esque not at all like your pictures, which are clean and beautiful which they absolutely were NOT!

    I’ll think of the name in a minute.

    BTW if everyone id wondering why I am here so much at the moment its ‘cos I am avoiding my other life! CATHY will understand, I am having a Mexican standoff (pardon the pun) with my builder In fact I just sacked him ‘cos basically he has nearly bankrupted me over a loft/one bedroom building that he has had 18 months to do and so far has only done two supporting walls.

    Argh, you guys are saving me from doing something silly…

  • Thank you David Ryder…! thank you…

    Oh, my good friend Herve…
    I really can’t wait to see the pics from France you are


    the song is called ‘Maps’ by the Yeah, Yeah, Yeah’s

    Whaddya think?

  • yes, I’m selfish … I’m unkind… PLACEBO

    pixies – where is my mind

  • david alan harvey


    i am so proud of you…

    what an amazing transformation has taken place here on this forum with you…i mean that…

    right here before everyone’s very eyes you have “risen to the occasion”…busted ass…..created a truly reflective body of work that is so totally you..

    you may remember my mandate to you just a couple of weeks ago was to make your photographs match your words…you have done that …”in spades”…i somehow thought a long time ago that you had something special to offer that was just boiling under the surface….you let it out…

    ok now, after all of that and before we both start to cry, let me say that you should look at this as a new beginning..and do not let any of my words go to your head…think hubris hubris and hubris….

    i did not want to edit tonight…it was late (still is late!) when i saw your work…i was just enjoying cruising through the mind of a man i have never met….

    peace, david

  • Lisa, good song…
    The problem with me is that I cant think of any songs now
    I definitely think I need a differemt song than oladi oblada …

    Im sure there MUST be a good Leobard Cohen song to fit my shots….

  • J Lennon “Stand by Me”…..?



    I,… hmm.. er..

    ANNA ,
    thank you for revealing that I’m tall… I’m 6’3″…
    I can’t run and i can’t hide…
    but i can drink…


  • so much going on how can one keep up… but WONDERFUL


    how about the Francois K. remix of Nina Simone’s gorgeous “here comes the sun”…

    it’s dark, it’s venice, the sun is coming, there’s an urgency to the beat… little darling it feels like years since you’ve been here

    your pictures rock… DO NOT let go of the THROTTLE dude i’m still looking for mine

    a regular blues lyrics would be great :)))
    just let me know if you need a mindless post from me :))))))
    just a bottle of wine, and its eaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaasy :)))))))

    love your new site… finally had a chance to look… has a calm feel to it, doens’t get in the way of viewing the images… great that you included the tearsheets, think thats an important one… love your mood… and australia of course :))))))))

    although i think it’s right that for Editors they need to see the images fast and clean, i think for me i wouldn’t have this blog any other way… the intimacy, the organic-ness, the family-feeling, being able to sit down and get a burst of energy again…. i haven’t been here long, but already now: THANK you for coming up with the endless energy…. and i thought PANOS was on a roll… you are the definitely the ROLLMASTER :)))

    would it be a good idea to show some of my work BEFORE the look3 workshop, so everyone can see the – i suspect – HUGE difference before and after a veritable DAH workshop ????

    throwing myself to the lions here :-)

    peace to y’all

  • random pictures….
    I more or less agree with dr (btw, very nice pictures but, yes, not an easy website to navigate).
    I’m still working with film, so shooting like a maniac would be something i can’t afford financially, but it’s not my way of working either. Photography has to be a relaxing activity for me and i mostly shoot landscapes, so i usually take my time, walk or drive around, stop when i see something i think i could get a nice picture from, but then i dont necessarily end up shooting. And generally i dont shoot more than 3-4 pictures of the same subject (i also learnt to accept i can walk home without having shot a single picture if i feel i was not in the mood). But obviously with a landscape it’s easier, you dont have to catch the moment, well, the light may change but a landscape or a building are not walking away…
    I agree with you david when you say editing starts when one is shooting and no pictures are really random.
    However, as i read of people here shooting 400 pictures in few hours i was wondering: has digital photography changed the way of working, i mean, are those who have switched to the digital shooting much more than they used to now that there’s no film cost any longer? do they shoot more randomly and consequently have a much bigger editing work to do?
    i feel i’d like to show something, doesnt make much sense to stay here writing on my attitude towards photography and never show anything, does it? and of course i’d like to exploit you a bit and have some straight comments.
    However…i dont know when i’ll be able to work on a website but i did start scanning some slides. It’s a work of many years ago when i was working in a home for the aging and took some pictures of those old people, portraits as well as moments of their daily life at the home.
    I could make a PDF, one single document with around 15 pictures, very easy to vision, and send it to you by email.
    I’m only sorry I cant share it and have comments from the community this way…but i’ll have them later when the website is online (maybe i should set a deadline…)
    please let me know.

    and lastly: strangely enough yesterday morning i was thinking “hey there should be a place where i can track all the bloggers’ websites whenever i want to see somebody work again.
    Then i go to roadtrips and someone is posting about the same question!
    What about delicio.us or one of those social bookmarkings services where one can group his favorite websites. I dont know how they exactly work, maybe some of you here does?


  • RAFAL, why wouldn’t you get off the beaten track (famous and boring well known songs) and explore myspace and find a nice quiet song without lyrics, something relaxing which reflects “Home Sweet Home” ?

    I’ve friends doing cool stuff there:
    Songs like “tumbleweed”, “baba bobo” or “music for a dance company III”, I am sure that they would be happy to provide the song along with an appropriate credit…

  • Bon Dia a tots!


    HERVE pointed this out to me yesterday as I didn’t realize it either, but presently you can see a poster’s site by simply clicking on their name below the posting. If the name is underlined it has a link.

    Of course it depends on how the person originally registered, and in your case there is no link. The next time you post however, if you add something in the space for URL: that will be your link.

    I hope this helps.

  • ALL:

    I made some slight changes to the organization of my site.

    The intention was to separate out the “Vacation” work and the documentary work. If any of you have any feedback, especially as it pertains to trying to do two types of work (travel & documentary) I’d love to hear it, no matter how honest, direct and harsh you may be;-)


    Thanks y’all!


    We used to call Leonard Cohen ‘Mr Suicide Music’ No, no I love your little boy, you can’t do that to him!


    If any of you are interested I just posted ‘Beautiful Music’ on my site which is the preliminary stuff I have just shot for this long term doco I am doing (or will do if I can get funding) Let me know what you think!

    Beautiful Music


  • ANTON!!!!!!

    I finally got into your site (it didn’t seem to be working before) We have to have an exhibition together! I have ‘Dapto Dogs’ and you have ‘Racing Dogs’ two different sides of the same coin, I see the racing as cruel and unusual punishment, yet you think that the owners love their animals, i think the opposite viewpoints show don’t you?


    I love your doco stuff. I’d ditch the travel and do the doco, its gorgeous, I am always so envious of people like you and DAH who use colour so well. I am just hopeless with it I think. I thought I had a palette but the very next stuff I shot I had to do in B/W to make it meaningful for me!

    Whats your trick?

  • LISA

    “the homeless,mentally ill, disadvantaged and drug and alchohol affected”

    Sometimes don’t ya just feel one step away from at least two of those?
    What a great start. I love the faces. Can you get closers ?

  • LISA:

    Trick, nada. I wish I had a trick. I always try to shoot color and then if the color doesn’t work I would go black and white, but I’ve never done anything in B&W as I always end up opting for color. All I can say is that I just see things that way. I think it was many years glued to the tv when I was a kid!

    On a serious note, you think I should take the travel right off the site? I’d like to do more documentary work, but I see it this way. Travel work, done well, with more of documentary style can pay. And just as the big actors and directors do big budget movies to pay for their independent projects I think the two could co exist. Maybe I’m wrong, though. Is having the two up there like having documentary and wedding work on the same site? Is it that bad?

    Thanks for your feedback.

  • hey LISA

    yes yes i saw your dogs too!!! really weird to see the same thing in 2 different visual perspectives :)))))

    though i must confess that i have no clue what is going on with the dogs, if it is a cruel punishment or not… i only visited the track and didn’t have a chance to really “follow” a dog home to get a different perspective….

    talked to a few owners of racing dogs so mostprobably i only heard half of the story… i have no opinion either way as i don’t feel i have a full story…

    they just all seemed to love their animals kissing and hugging them all the time…

    of course this was only a tiny track, just a couple of hundred spectators, no professional racing i think…

    maybe i should return and dig deeper… you’ve got me curious!



    Speaking of tricks, I wanted to ask you earlier about what your approach to getting such great access was in the brothels in Bangkok?

  • Charlie,

    where are you writing from at 5 am? not from the US i guess (so it’s probably not 5 am for you as it is not for me…)
    anyway….besides the link below the posting, I was thinking to something different. A place where whenever i want to see your or panos’ or erica’s or whoever’s work i don’t have to look into hundreds of posts, expecially when i want to track the work by somebody who does not post very often.
    But probably a place just for our links wouldnt work either, it would grow too much over the time as probably everyone would link to his or her website.

  • GUIDO:
    I’m in Barcelona, Spain. It’s 12:30pm here.

    I agree with you, man, but I think that the practicality of it is a bit more complicated than it seems and leaves a heavy burden on the person managing the blog, which I assume is DAH or an assistant (if he has one). I wouldn’t be surprised at all if some venture capitalist in Silicon Valley was working on some type of truly organic social networking platform as we speak.

  • LISA,

    Beautiful music is a compelling story with the sequence very well conducted by you and Gone to the dogs is also amazing.
    Talking about colors I would pick some beautiful images from The coloured digger…

    Ari B.

  • MATT NEWTOWN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


    I nearly swallowed my tongue! Nice to see you haven’t lost your sense of humor since last we met!

    Nice story huh, pure gold for photos. I am with them for the long haul, I’m looking for funding for a TV type doco on their upcoming road trip, so the idea is that I shoot that as well, which is damned exciting for me. I’ve shot some small 10 min vid doc’s but this would be the first major one. Its just funding really.

    Its a great story though and I will be pushing to get it done.


    I didn’t mean to take it off the site, I guess I see the two as inseparable really, travel/doco. Just I like people pictures best! (you are lucky you have a color sense, should see me when I go clothes shopping. If its not black or white I generally don’t trust it!)


    They are professional punters I guess they have to be quite detached from the out come of the dogs performance…

    Now I am living up to my second name and ‘hogging’ DAH’s blog, so I am going to do some proposal writing now and hopefully I will leave some space for other people. see ya

  • PANOS: I am also so so proud of you and the mad-fullthrottle beach fuck discodance brillcreamcumcame madness that you’ve put urself through..:)))….man, when you kick the door down here, or rather, ran over everyone with your frickin’ Highway 10 SUV guzzler iphonepoppin foul mouth, i thought: this guy gonna either electrify a friendship or act like all those other loudmouth posers, but somehow, i sense it wasnt an act, but the real deal…if “proud” sounds too patronizing, let me just see I am happy happy (relieved? ;) ) too for u…and i love the name Panopolis! :)))…’nuff said here :)))

    LISA: will look at the new work this weekend: i’ve tired myself to a internet leash: no more, from now own, than 1 hr to web, including emails, dah, ls, nytimes, research etc etc…so, im going like now all hermit-ty, gotta, to make my own writing and photography sing, and most importantly to make sure computer is a small time part of my waking life, compared with the real time with the only folk that matter: marina and dima…so, i’ll look and drop you a rhyme this weekend…

    DAVID: brother, no :))..you are the only captain here! Just like Herve and Marcin and panos and lisa and all the Mikes (too m any to list :)) )and all the rest, im just a worker shoveling the coal to keep the fire alive on this beautiful trail…’cos it’s like TGV now, so in that case I believe King Herve would be the helmsman ;))..

    LINDA O: :))) My pleasure: someday, i’ll share some stories about my uncle’s life of touring and playing with Big Jack Johnson, and all those delta bluesmen )))…it’s in the blood!

    KATHARINA: :))) GREAT..:)0…ok, David won’t get bored, because we are not talking with him; WE ARE TALKING WITH ALL THE MEMBERS OF THE BLOG :)))..this is an important discussion about photography and essays, sequencing, and I am so so happy u put up the pic with old woman….ok, i’ll start the chat..BESIDES, it IS about RANDOMNESS


    Ok, so some have been wondering what Katharina and I have been talking about (behind closed doors in emails) and some have wondered about this reference to “OLD WOMAN.” You can now see the photo of the old woman on Kat’s website at the end of the BKK Prostitute story. I won’t describe who this woman is or the reason why she is there (that will be Kat’s job, since its her essay), but I first saw Kat’s essay when she was at David’s BKK Workshop last year. David post several of the pics and I LOVED IT. I wrote a comment and kat and I started a long and wonderful conversation about the work and others reaction to it. anyway, I told Kat, maybe a problem was that people were hung up on the “sensational” aspect of the sex pics. That’s their problem, not Kat’s but I always felt the story was not about the sex, but about these woman and their life before and after. Later, Kat returned to deepen and develop the essay and in her shooting met an old woman who used to be a prostitute.

    For me, she is the ghost the star point of the story. Most BKK Sex Trade stories i see look almost all the same. I never really saw a story about the girls away from the bars/hotels or about women who were once part of the trade. For me, this old woman was the story, for all these magnificent young girls will, most likely, end up like her, when all the men (and all the western men) return to their families. Kat’s portraits are magnificent! and while i also like the hotel shots, i really love the portraits: those are the heart…and this old woman, a guiding angel really, is the pulpy ghost for me that makes this essay so important…So, i told kat INCLUDE THE OLD WOMAN, even if it is 1 picture…

    my thinking was this: in a short essay (10 pics, for example for DAH), she still is at the heart. It doesnt matter even if the viewers “understand” who she is or it doesnt matter that there be “context” to flesh out her presence. In fact, I like the seemingly “random” nature of her being there because she raises questions: editorally and metaphorically! who is she, how did the young girl suddently become old, why did the photogrpher include her, is she prostitute or mother or mama-san or ghost…this is important. Also, i personally perfer always including pictures that appear out-of-sync or random, not only for thier “shock” value (although, shock is not the right work, maybe provocation) because every story and every photographer MUST PHOTOGRAPH/EDIT as their internal and poetic logic dictates. For example, for my look3 projection series, i end with a photograph that seems to be totally random: two hands holding in a church. it looks different than all the faces you can see her at DAH DPF webpage. But, there is a reason I inlcude this picture, even though it might not make any sense to viewers, or david. it makes metaphoric sense to me (the journey, the sadness, the comfort, the famly, the ending, the funeral, the beginning) but also it IS EDITORIALLY IMPORTANT: many many koreans go to church, this was a big surprise, the % of the students who were christian and who went to church alot and often, seemed odd for an asian country or more interestingly for young people who the night before were up late drinking: i realized that it was more than just christianity: it was about community and acceptance and fear, fear of being alone…so i put the picture there…i know David might think it’s random and i am sure the audience at Look3 will think: weird bob black…


    in an essay, no matter how short, a photographer must be honest with her vision, with the idea behind…sometimes context is important and sometimes the logic of the poetry behind the story need not include the viewer, or rather need not Tell the viewer, rather provoke them to dig and reflect and wonder….

    Often time a Random image, which appears different in a series acts as a catalyst or a defining moment….this to me is important…i always do this: maybe it comes from being a poet, but i think the intuitive abstraction, the collision that the “odd” image makes speaks often more loudly than the “easily” understood sequenced…

    look at Davi’d Divided soul…or Moriyama’s good bye photography…

    a great sequence doesnt always have to make sense in oder to make sense profoundly!!


  • Rafal…

    A big YES to Lennon’s Stand By Me!

    Just wanted to chime in. Off to make some photos.


  • Dear DAH and all,

    Since leaving home on May 15 I have not checked in on the site so it was fun to check in and see where everyone is.

    Road trip excellent. It started with the intent to document the climate of America in relation to economics/politics/ agriculture; however, the pulse the photos are taking seem to be of a more personal nature–past lives.

    I feel like a familiar movie script–woman goes home after 3 decades to see the lives of loved ones left behind. What I found were bachelors that were loves of my life way back when.

    Anyway, way fun and great photos of these guys and their lives and community. One lives right in the middle of a community where a good portion of my ancestors lived and loves to sit on his porch and watch birds and the other is toting guns in a locked tool box in his Dodge truck–took me out shooting at the rock quarry.

    Random photos–I have a few from the beginning of the trip before I got to my old stomping grounds. Love them but not sure what to do with them.

    I’m in Tennessee now to begin the 10 day vacation with my two girls and their kids. It’s true about what they say–you can’t go back but going back facilitates the healing of old pains and in one case rekindled an old flame.


  • Dear All,

    Re:Random….Isn’t all of photography random? Every picture we take is based upon a random moment, a chance moment, a serendipitous (nod to David) moment, situation, feeling etc. Apart from the obvious caged, studio-set shots….but even those, it’s about a certain ‘chance’ moment/look that gets THE shot. That’s one of the great things about photography though and one that probably gets all of us somewhere deep….the fact that we are seeing a ‘chance’, ‘random’, ‘serendipitous’ moment, never to be seen again and we are there to see it, to try and ‘get’ it.

    PANOS…I feel like I am missing out on something here. I cannot see any of your links from here in China. Even the special site I use to circumnavigate the Great Firewall of China to see David’s blog, cannot get to your pictures. I doubt if you have offended the Chinese, unless you have had a Sharon Stone moment I don’t know of! Anyway, if there is any other way to see them, please let me know. I just reread some of our earlier exchanges in January…they made me smile…we have come a long way…I want to share a beer with you soon!

    Best to All,

    P.S. I love how there seems to be a soundtrack developing to accompany David’s blog. I’d like to throw in a song I’ve been listening to recently……

    and one for Panos…Caught by the Fuzz (British slang for Police) ;)

  • ROMAIN – some great pictures there, but I second David’s opininon! Too many pictures and bit too much Alex there ;-)

    DAVID – would it be OK for you considering the LOOK3, if I upload 20-30 pictures on June 10th for you to edit down, together with background music? Or rather earlier? The work is still in progress… I feel tired a bit, sometimes enthusiastic, sometimes a bit down… wake up, shoot, office work, shoot, develop, scan, sleep… ;-)

  • I actually leaning to Lennon’s Stand by Me


    my problem is that Im pretty much going to have to have the song by tomorrow….right now I think theres no time to find anything uknown…pressed for time…and kicking myself for being so lame with music….

    Well, Im going to go with John Lennon’s version of Stand by Me first, followed by any version of Stand By Me if Lennon’s cant be found for download…

    but if any people have any suggestions Ill have some time to listen to songs in my office tomorrow…

    So…calling for suggestions!

  • oh, instrumental only songs would be preferred actually over lyrics…………

  • Bob,
    thank’s a lot for the encouragement. The old woman came into the picture by accident one day in February when I was looking for her neighbour Oi ( the prostitute in blue ) ……Originally -when thinking about a topic for the workshop last November- I wanted to photograph the private lifes of prostitutes which wasn’t possible for various reasons ( time constraints/ one subject disappeared etc ) …That’s why we started to concentrate on the short-time situations …… However, the old woman is kind of what I had been looking for before the workshop…. Although she is out of prostitution due to her disease, still her life experience is very inspiring and I’d like to use her as the ” ghost” or ” conscience” who ‘ll pop up occasionally in the project.( which is far from being finished )…. It’s good t have the short-time pictures as ” proof ” …but personally I find the weird moments / portraits /objects ( lollipop colours) much more interesting to pursue…..

  • Katharina/ Bob,

    Thanks for sharing the insights about your essay and story. Loved the first pictures you did at the time David had shared your initial essay and this is shaping over time into an even more powerful one. Interestingly, I smiled this morning when reading Bob’s perspective as I looked at your site last night after Charlie shared the link and I hardly paifd attention to the last shot and I had actually not looked at your text yet. I went back his morning after reading Bob, did look at your text and then everything seemed so clear and actually that end shot of the old lady is indeed crucial to the story…very moving to see what this old lady has become and of of a sudden all the previous pictures also become stronger as a result…I am just pissed off at me that I did not see this by myseof the first time….. In any case, great powerful work katharina. Would love to continue to see where you are heading with this story….Eric

  • Eric,
    thanks a lot… I only moved the old woman back this morning …. so in any case you couldn’t have seen her before…..

  • david alan harvey


    guns in pickup trucks…shooting at the rock quarry…can’t go home again….rekindled old flame…hmmmmm, well this will lead to something for you….your personal life has been a rocky road lately, but i think you are coming out of the worst part….and you can use your work to facilitate….it seems to me like you could take the return to your “old stomping grounds” and the rekindling of an “old flame” to lead you to a few visual vignettes…slices of time….not photojournalism, but your photorealism…i know you tried this in New York with your first concept for the workshop, but you might want to try it again ….shooting “in the mirror”….i really think, and i have always thought, that this is where you could take your work….mull this over for awhile…shake yourself up….there are no “requirements”….make it easy and natural….maybe bring your daughters into it…by the way, where are you going to live??


    i will listen to a few, but we need to make this decision soon…..remember your work will be up on the screen for about a minute, so think sound track accordingly….it cannot be something that “kicks in” late….


    good idea on the “before and after”…..


    i think you may notice that most photographers have a “commercial side” to their websites…for example, those of us at Magnum who may want to do advertising have a separate place for commercial clients to visit….but honestly, all of my good ad work has come from an art director seeing my personal work…my books….the ad shoot may be of subject matter quite different from the personal work, but they become interested in me as a photographer through the personal photographs..

    also honestly, i lose good ad jobs that i could do quite easily because i do not have something very specific in my portfolio…i.e. i lost a really good job on the Mexico coast that i knew well…had it wired….they needed pictures of people playing golf and on jet skis…i have no pictures in my portfolio of people on jet skis or playing golf…i lost the job to a photographer who had pictures of people doing these activities …so some clients are just very very literal when they choose a photographer…

    on the other hand i got one of my very best ad jobs for Lavazza coffee where they wanted “sensuality” with coffee…i went to the Costa Brava with a beautiful model and “did my thing” in black & white…now i normally do not shoot models nor am i known for black & white…but this particular art director went for my ability to get a kind of sensuality and he figured i could handle the rest….so go figure!!!

    i think it is always to your advantage in the long run to just show what you do best and let the “chips fall where they may”…you cannot psyche the commercial world out anyway….you will lose your mind trying to figure this out….my basic rule of thumb is: get your expenses down low, do your own thing, hope for the best!!!

    cheers, david

  • Yan, can you ask your friends if I can use Boba Bobo?

  • david alan harvey


    i will do a edit and then run it by you soonest as i have done with everyone….

  • david alan harvey


    you would need to upload now to be considered for Look3….i have about three or four more days to get this done….panic mode!!!!!!!!!

    but, you should not be in “panic mode”…none of us should ever be in what i call the “rush to publish”….always know there are more venues…publish when you are ready and not before….

    anyway, let’s take a look soonest and we can make a decision…

  • Ok! I’ll upload what I have now tonight, 9-10pm GMT.


    I just gave them a call and they said that it is no problem as long as they are credited… You can directly download it from myspace otherwise I have it and can forward it to you…

  • david alan harvey


    i have heard many times that my site is blocked in China…are all western photoblogs blocked??? what do you think is the reasoning???


    nice to have you around amigo…..we have so many from our BKK crew here….maybe i can get Jim to come online and chat a bit..i know he is in New York now and we are supposed to meet in the next couple of days…what have you been up to??? new work??

    cheers, david

  • david alan harvey


    all musicians are credited at the end of my slide shows…

  • BTW, my bus project, in the shape I’m thinking about (I don’t know yet… long essay… 100 pictures… a book… ), will not be ready yet anyway… so there is no “premature” option… ;) – I can send you whatever I have or not, I will continue it anyway, probably without the pace I have now, but still…

  • David ,
    thanks a lot…but no rush… ( sent you the first lollipop version that I partly removed for your reference by e- mail) ….

    BKK: Kloie was planning to pop by as well….

  • david alan harvey


    yes, i think we could take the “workshops/student work” part of this website and use it as a place to have links…this is, after all, one big online workshop…i will make a spot soonest..

  • ok DAVID, glad you like the idea… here goes… the first BEFORE of the “before and after”


    wanted to bring 2 series of about 10 images to the workshop… here is the first one… still will edit this down to 10 i think, too many images now maybe

    “taka” is a project that i am slowly getting into, Taka will be my insider into the japanese ‘underworld’…

    i have no clue what this means, but he warned me no “westerner” has ever been (allowed) in the places he will take me…. great guy, knows no english, plays in a japanese hardcore punk band and owns the smallest bar in the middle of tokyo red light district… took a lot of effort to get him to do this…

    here is the first edit, i might add some images of a gig he did in an underground club and going out, though i don’t know if very relevant to the story

    will be going for the next visit this fall (funds permitting of course), when he will actually take me along… you could view this edit as an introduction to taka and his bar, setting the mood like i felt it those nights…



  • i too take random pics, but seems like most/all of them end up being part of the larger story/ bigger picture…about the feeling and atmosphere of the place that i am visiting. i am not going to talk any more about this, as the topic has been very well delved into and explored…and i would only repeat what has already been said…

    but anyway…in the project i have been working on, there has now been photographed 3 men, and i am in contact through a friend of mine, with a girl/woman. had an escort lady write to me, but she wanted money (chi ching!!), something i can’t offer…and also thought that being photographed in my apartment is not good enough, rather a studio! tried to explain…but no reply :(
    but once i have photographed some women, i will post some pics for you to see.

    off to see the World Press Photo exhibition soon…which i am looking forward too…

    will be great to have everyone add their names and links to their web page, to get an overall picture of who’s here, and also what they photograph…can it be done some thing similar to what you have in your “Road Trip Links” David?? or is it meant more of a place where we post links…and maybe get comments…



    Great work! Deeply gritty, raw energy- I love it.

  • Stuff I’d make available for Look3, though I think a lot of what’s going on with that went over my head. No rush to publish, but thought I’d post these anyway:




  • David,

    Access to certain websites is a constant battle here in China. For years the BBC website was completely blocked until very recently when (completely coincidentally) Olympic inspectors where in Beijing to examine ‘press freedom’ for the upcoming influx of journalists.

    Certain blogs, and websites, are blocked. Wikipedia is sporadic as is YouTube. Annoying, but inevitable.

    The reasoning is obvious. Control on information. Has something been said to upset the wrong people?…Then it is blocked. Has something been said that goes against the party line? Then it is blocked.

    The Chinese have maybe the most advanced internet policing in the world. Keywords are especially utilised in terminating internet connections.

    Blogs are dangerous as they are outlets for the opinions of individuals and there are so many that they are difficult to police. Why not just block the the site/server that hosts the blogs? Western or Chinese.

    It’s a very difficult problem. Whilst the western press have been given assurances that they will be free to report here in China up to, and including the Olypmics, it will be interesting to see what will happen after everyone has left and press ‘freedom’ returns to normal.


  • DAVID:

    Thanks. That certainly fits your motto of being true to yourself.

    I’d like to leave the two categories up for now, “projects” and “travel” and as I get more material I’ll shuffle that other stuff out.

    I hope that’s a reasonable course of action for now.

  • more VENICE BEACH, a woman’s perspective…


  • Charlie, a rented room hotel is not a brothel.


    Looking forward to see your next work on the “old lady”. Most “prostitution” essays sin by showing us the context, the job, the action, very rarely one person. When people argue about prostitution, it is very rare they zero in on one person and name her. So they do the same thing as passer by, see exactly what they want and (think they) know.

    But in thailand, the country where so much of the surface appearances are only one peel/skin of an onion, “you cannot judge a monk by its garb”, as the expression goes (literally sometimes!).

    RAFAL. Why do you need music, everyone agrees your photos are strong, limpid, even pure in many ways. If everyone else has music, and you don’t, they will pay even more attention. I am sure you never shot with audio in mind. Why do it after the fact? David’ s use of the word intent is a great pointer:

    What is your intent? Then stick to it. Do not dilute with niceties.


  • Random pictures are very strange. I mean, the way it come to us. I was walking in the streets of montreal and I saw this guy on a bench and, do not ask me why, I thought to the Venice Beach of Panos with all these characters.

    The picture is on my blog (sorry, it’s only in french.


  • hi david,

    i’ve just been reading through all the talk of look3 and other possible venues. did you see my email about vision?

    thanks jason.

  • RAFAL,

    Go to iTunes
    Tap on iTunes Store (on the left)
    Type in AMERICAN BEAUTY (at the top, in the searchbar)
    Check out song #2

    Anna B.

  • david alan harvey

    ANNA B.

    now THERE is a good idea!!


    i am a bit behind in the comments (who wouldn’t be?)…i have not read the most recent 15 or so….and i have no time now either…i mean gorgeous day in New York…afternoon light streaming through my old loft window that i thought i would never look out again…so it is too too nice outside to be looking at a computer screen…

    i am on my way over to Jim Nachtwey’s apartment for a glass of wine and dinner with some other friends…on the phone just now i asked him if he would do an online chat here with you….so if you want to ask James a few questions, in the way that you did with Allard, you had better stay tuned…i doubt it will happen tonight, but who knows..probably sometime in the next couple of days…

    anyway, i will stop in here later or first thing in the morning…

    oh yes, by the way, sometimes good comes out of bad…not only did i get back into our beloved “kibbutz” building, but i negotiated to move up two floors now giving me an unobstructed view of the Manhattan skyline…so so cool…so you must come up and have a cold beer with me at some point..many of you have been already…but, the new place is really fine (in a bohemian sort of way)…

    cheers, david


    I am trying to setup a proper web site, I am starting to edit the main self assignment from last year, I cannot get rid of some pictures, comments are welcome…


  • Well, if I didnt have anything intelligent to ask Mr Allard, I have even less to ask Mr Nachtwey. The closest I’ve ever been to conflict on the scale he’s used to is when my ex-sister in law somehow got her hands on the remote and changed the channel in the middle of the Super Bowl so she could watch An Officer and a Gentleman instead. The fireworks began almost immediately.

  • david alan harvey


    i just set up a spot under “student work/workshops” where you can post your links…we will see how Herve’s idea works…

  • Anderson,
    just had a look at your link, I like the work, and thought it read well, but I feel as though its missing something. some sparks or mystery. I think you need to reach inward, towards yourself. ask yourself what you really want to express and I think believe in your instincts and gut feeling.
    look at more work thats out there and ask yourself why do you like a certain thing. take that and put it in your own way.

  • David,

    Thanks for this post, it been interesting to read the responses… and it has been making me think about the idea of randomness.

    Don’t we all, in our own way, deal with a chaotic world… and what is photography but finding order and meaning in it?

    Tension between that order and randomness give many photographs energy, I think…. it’s what jumps out at me from contact sheets. “Random” can be a wonderful thing…

    But I make a distinction between that sort of organic randomness and a “random” picture which may not fit in a defined project or essay… maybe I’d think about an “eccentric” photograph, if I did work in terms of projects.

    And I make a further distinction with “arbitrary” photographs. I see photographs as the products of deliberate choices. We choose the frame, we choose the composition, the light, the focus, the format, and we choose the moment to release the shutter. We choose which pictures to keep, which to discard, which to show and to whom. We put them in sequences to create narrative. We choose how to display them and when. I think the photographer must take absolute responsibility for each of these choices (and many more.) If made arbitrarily, left to chance or ignorance, the work ultimately suffers.

    Is taking responsibility for these decisions, and making very deliberate choices close to the idea of “authorship”?

    In any case, I usually find deliberately made photographs stronger and more interesting than arbitrary ones… they have a foundation to support meaning. I don’t find this a function of “self-discipline”, really, but simply a responsibility to one’s work and voice.

    I’ve been looking at Miroslav Tichy recently… a great example of deep-end random but unbelievably deliberate. And, a genius!

  • RAFAL,

    Since you were thinking of Leonard Cohen…

    Why not Hallelujah?
    It’s gorgeous. It’s about love…although in a Leonard-downer way but give it a listen…

    It took a while to load.

    There’s a lot of great covers of this song…
    from Jeff Buckley (the greatest) to Jason Castro of American Idol who had a #1 hit with it recently.

  • I thought the new entry to post links in STUDENTS/WS was for specific new work, not general website links that we can access easily already and everytime someone posts and made it stick with their “posted by” name….

    In any case, friends, make sure to give us a one line caption for new works, so we easily figure out these (specific) from the others (general).

    Thanks David.

  • david alan harvey


    i am either losing my mind or someone other than you made the suggestion to do exactly what i have done…did i mis-read your suggestion??

  • DAVID and ALL!
    (sorry for delay…)
    for my photographs click below:
    background music should start automatically, if not – please download it from http://varia.alkos.info/ba.mp3 (slightly edited Barry Adamson > King Of Nothing Hill > Les Mantin Des Noire )

    Looking forward your suggestions! :-)

  • David, no mis-reading on your part.

    I thought we (and not really you) were talking about new work. But mea culpa, I forgot all the roadtrippers who are not really posting or not too much, and still want to have their link available to others (1). It’s all going to work out, Just I wish to reiterate that new work should be given some kind of underlining, caption. Maybe I am too optimistic, I think the entry will soon have 2 or 3 pages and dozens of posts/links

    I went direct to a name I did not remember. i saw these pictures before, maybe not here?, but everyone, see Christian Kaiser, superb work with BKK slum kids, and more on his site:


    (that’s the slide show with music)

  • (oh, btw – this is my submission to look3 option… for my ‘normal’ site click the name below ;) … )

  • damn..
    a lot of things happened or
    happening right now..


    if you are tired or overwhelmed
    Can you please ask

    JAMES N.

    No nails left to bite..!!

    2 ICONIC PHOTOGS..editing..???
    it will probably take you 22 seconds..

    Am I really asking TOO MUCH??

    peace.. I need some wine..
    but I’m ok the 15 south
    going San Diego..

  • by the way..
    I’m a nice person..
    very polite too..
    never cursed in my life..
    ask Jesus..

    and before I forget ,
    I NEVER OWNED OR even rented
    an SUV..
    don’t listen to the rumors..

  • KA – BOOOOMM!!!!!

    I’m witnessing a BLOG EXPLOSION from sleepy San Miguel… tequila on the dresser, beautiful LIGHT on the red stucco outside this arched window.. i’m late for dinner… but it’s MEXICO afterall.. is there anything that runs on time here?

    okay now i really gotta run..

    abrazos all!!!

  • Nachtwey!!

    i think he is the only person on the planet who reduces me to feeling like a quivering adolescent groupie.
    (i’m 49 for chrissakes! hah)

    don’t know if i’ll be around when he comes on ‘live’ here but i do have a question:

    How do you keep your work ‘fresh’? Do you ever feel like you are in a rut at times? And, if so, what do you do or say to yourself to get out of it?

    Thanks! I’ll raise a glass to you both tonight. :)


  • David,

    yes I changed it.

    I went with a Korean song and sent the mp3 to Michael. Its a beautiful song.

    Pluses of it being in Korean are:

    1. Nobody will focus on the words so that wont detract from the images.

    2. The singing is very soft.

    3. The title is “I Believe” which is the only English in the song and I think it also fits the feeling of the photos.

    Have a listen. I should have thought of this before as its a song with a lot of sentimental value to me and my wife. Anyway, Michael should hav the mp3 file now. Just sent.

    Ill put up a link to a website with it so everyone can listen to it.

  • KATIA,

    I know JAMES is kinda cute..
    but don’t you think DAVID is a little “hotter”..

    Let’s vote, let’s vote..
    ONE TO TEN..

    I give DAH 8..
    and JAMES N… 6.5..

    Ladies what you think??

    Hopefully they both drunk
    right now.. they don’t care..
    so who is “sexier”..?
    DAH or JAMES..

  • panos–

    i think they’re both incredibly sexy in completely different ways.

    nachtwey seems so humble and understated
    while DAH is utterly Larger-than-Life.
    they both have their own unique exquisite charm. ;)

  • PANOS, PANOS!!!!!!

    You are an ‘agent provocateur’ aren’t you!!!!!!!!!


  • Herve,

    I was thinking the same actually but in the end I think a song is a good idea…music does move. The only thing I was afreaid of was a song overpowering the images both woth words and an aggressive melody. In the end I went with a Korean song because I think people are much less likely to get hung up on the vocals if they dont know the language. I also went for a song that has sentimental value to me and my wife and where the only English words are “I Believe”

  • quick, quick….writing/scanning break…


    LOVE LVOE THE BUS RIDE, REALLY! :)))…so happy u popped up after being shown with dah and now…really dig…made me weepy, than again, im writing, spent 2 1/2 hours on our porch drinking wine and talking about family stories with mrs. black…and now this…good on you young lad ;))…happy…

    DAVID/JIM:…no questions…why does everyone quiver in front of them…dont fucking get it at all…this is what i remember from jim: that man speaks with a hum and wears vests (um, me too) and has an agility of gentleness that belies the death and pain he has swallowed…and christ, it’s only photographs…i might not be around for the show, just as i missed the allard (weekends are for my family not the rest of the world), but…im happy jim will jump in…

    as for the rating of photo studes (initiated above), well david’s got some swift moves, that i hear he learned from Lance on the dance flooor ;))…

    im gone for a few days….my question for jim would be a simple one:

    the days and ways of things, to remain undetered…

    ok, gone to write…

    addidas-adios amigo(s)…


  • Panos– Such a question! You punking us again?! :)

    And your driving on the 15 south going to San Diego. Heading to Mission Beach to get the more subtle mirror of Venice Beach? I live here at the beach. Your work is really rocking and has inspired to shoot around here.

    Bob / Anton — We definitely gotta work on more lyrics. Would be a hoot! Maybe at LOOK3?

    As for your question, Panos — David and Jim are both are pretty awesome. They’re poetic, generous, humble, sexy, bright, honest, their work makes our hearts sing and the planet is a better place for having them truly participate in this game called life. I wonder what wine they are drinking?

  • Bob,

    isnt it so weird me and you have such a strong Korean connection in our photography?

  • Katia, Lisa, Linda….

    Only three girls in the audience…

    sounds like a “Rage Against The Machine” concert…
    ( thank you ladies , anyways.)

    I know we talked about it before…
    but one last time…

    Who else ( only girls apply ) is going to LOOK3
    I’ll be wearing a T-Shirt saying…


    seriously.. i just managed to book a airplane ticket… 10 min ago..

    Still looking for hotels… So far nothing…
    Any couches over there in C/Ville…
    any possible “INSIDERS”..?
    I can cook…

  • Panos– I just booked LOOK3 and got something on Expedia.com

  • Since David started the blog we’re in titled “Random” I would like to ask Jim… Do you ever make random pictures? If so — do they mirror the work you do with intention?

    And… this question is for BOTH David and Jim… Your work is profound for different reasons. Is there one picture you made that you are most satisfied with that you got to be there making that picture, and if so — what is the picture and can you share why.

  • Linda..
    so,… explain… please…
    can’t i just walk in that little town…
    and find a room…???

  • Lisa,

    … running (i always wanted to say that Bob, i appropriate with apologies), on the road, but you asked about Hutterites …

    Fascinating people, Anabaptists like Amish and Mennonite, but in many ways not like them at all. They speak a unique dialect of German-Austrian and High German, as well as English as a second language. Someone else here has done some amazing work at one of their colonies in Alberta, who was that, from GB? … and of course so did Allard for NatGeo, a 30-year friendship there. Hutterites represent the longest and most successful “experiment” in communal living (but not in an overly restrictive weird way) which started in Moravia nearly 500 years ago, then to be driven by persecution to migrate several times over the centuries. They now live in Canada and the U.S. (40,000+) and strongly believe in separation of church and state, are pacifists, and have little or no individual ownership of property. Most left the U.S. for Canada en masse during the world wars when some were essentially tortured to death in prison by the U.S. because they would not serve in the military. They are slowly returning. The colony I’m involved with is relatively new and has members who were born in Albertan colonies. It is a 50,000 acre farm with about 110 people in the colony. My foot is over the threshold but they are wary, rightfully so, some colonies more than others. They generally do not believe in photographs on religious grounds but this varies. With some notable exceptions, like Natgeo, they feel they have been lied to by journalists who just wanted access and then misrepresented their beliefs and customs. Good photos are somewhat rare, there are only a couple of books. I’m allowed right now to start taking photos but in a narrow context … I feel confident that will change ’cause I’m an ethical dude, I did my homework well, and things went really, really well today … i’m the first “journalist” they have let into this particular colony for any photos. I have to say they are some of the hardest working, kindest, giving people I have ever met and of course i would never betray that trust. The farm operation, with modern equipment, is incredibly clean and efficient. Darn good food too, kept feeding me all day. I said to my guide today, “but I have nothing to give you in return,” knowing my mistake as soon as the words crossed my lips, to which she smiled at me like a child and replied, “That is not why I give it.”

    Hutterites are an interesting contrast in America. While much of American society is all about acquiring property and things to boost ego and me, me, me, Hutterites do not own individual property, it is all owned by the community, and give, give, give for the good of the whole. Maybe it’s because they don’t watch TV ;-) They are not a Utopian society, do not claim to be, and make that quite clear, and their gender roles are “old world,” but i believe they have something to say by example and contrast.

    As I stood today watching women in old world clothing slaughter the chickens, and this would sound strange anywhere else, I knew I was in the right place. No pictures of this. Not yet. It will happen, patience, patience.

    This is going to be a long one, slow and steady with, i hope, intense waypoints … I’ll be working hard on it over the next year and will hopefully record sound, do some large format work, maybe even some film or video if they let me … none of which I’ve done before but I’m hooked in for getting all of this equip on loan with instruction. This will be a real collaboration with the colony i think and i’ll go further in that direction than i would, or could, if i was at a newspaper. I’m probably also going to do some actual farm work so I can “pay my way” for meals at the colony. I’ll also do some photo work in the nearby “English” or “outsider” community, as they say.

    All of this of course has the potential to go the way of “Natgeo boring” as Panos likes to say (I’ll admit, I like Natgeo boring, and other stuff too) so I’m keeping that in the back of my head. I think i need to find another concurrent project that is much edgier. Some way to contrast American society … but I have no good ideas here yet … perhaps that’s too complicated … maybe just a nearby “English” family. Don’t know yet.

    Hmmm, sorry for the long post, got on a roll and really jazzed today with good, good energy, and now i’ve said too, too much and really, who cares, just show me the damn pictures, good pictures. I’ve put myself on the spot now. In a year or bust :))

  • All of this of course has the potential to go the way of “Natgeo boring” as Panos likes to say ..

    when did i say those words…

    this one goes to “MAJOR TOM”…

  • “Spergrass”…. cool song , thank you,,,
    see you at Look3…

  • Panos– Don’t know, don’t know, but I like to book in advance if I can. I didn’t used to care, but once, awhile back in the south of France I ended up sleeping on the beach because everything was booked. The birds xxxx all over me and my backpack, it really sucked!

    This link has the HOW TO info for LOOK3

  • I see David and James aren’t around yet…
    Must still be drinking…


    On the way to Temecula?

    I happen to know a former movie star (who shall remain nameless) who has a big crush on James and would like to meet him…she thinks he’s pretty hot so put in one James=10 vote for her!

    LINDA O,
    You live in MB? I lived in South Mission in my SDSU days and will be shooting there when I’m back in CA. See you then!

  • ok….so, i just finished the past 2 1/2 hrs writing…shit, just sent shit to magazine, will see if they want to publish…Marina is sleeping, so ,i am about to go join her…no words, just spent them writing…

    so, will leave music….music, for all you…wont be around for a bit…

    david, panos, veba (velibor), lance, glenn, asher, lisa, katharina, linda o, kyung-hee, herve, marcin, mike (all of those beautiful mother fuckers), chris, young tom, anton, wrobertangell, dr, jukka, michal, erica, kelly, mike berube, sean G, andrew, erica, patricia, and, well, im too tired, but u know the rest of u….

    music…im off to bed, spent spent spent, will let u know if magazine things the writing is worth shit too…

    a song…a concert, marina and i saw, and this goes out to Brooklyn!!!



  • MAJOR TOM!!!!!!


    Sounds absolutely great and soul satisfying and exciting and just plain heart-good (to borrow a BRUZ BoB-ism!)


    All us ‘Bangers grads’ should have a show in November call it something like erm, ‘The Big Bang- One Year On!’

    (Hehehehehe…. I know you all get my sense of humor- no offense OK!)

  • CATHY..
    no, i was really going S.D…
    this one for you:

    thank you for playing..

    thank you… obviously , no
    INSIDERS for me in C/Ville..






    You go, man, you go!!!

  • Panos, Rafal, Bob, for you. David, a perfect night you had maybe, but for you too:

  • good day david,

    in my yesterday’s post (see may 29 4:35 am) i asked you if i could send you a small portfolio to vision. I’m not thinking either to look 3 or to an assignment, just would like to have a comment.

    BTW, it was me the other one who suggested a link to the bloggers’ websites but i also pointed out that i wasnt sure it would work once all can add their links freely. Could be useless if you end up with tens of links pages.
    As Hervè suggested it should present only the newest work and, i add, maybe have an invitation only formula. At least that’s how i see it.


  • David,

    ask Mr.N why he doesnt carry a camera around with him….also ask him if he ever thought of shooting something totally opposite of war…

  • HERVE! :))))

    love love that man! :)))

    running (sleepy)



    Anyone know if there is a way to get to the end of the comments faster than clicking through every single page of comments? I figure since I didn’t realize that everyone’s web site is just a click away, there’s something else I’m missing.

    How is it that you are running all the time? Especially when you are sleepy?

    With no visual image of you, I’m imagining a heavily caffeinated mix of Roger Creeley and Bill Rodgers. I love reading you here.

    all the best,

  • BOB

    Brooklyn got the Christed OZ firefly/snow persistence of being song…thank you…


    I think we need a


    bar at the end..but Mike c is obviously straight out out prepping for the slideshow..maybe soon?

  • Charlie,
    It’s a little hodge-podge, but after you get past the first page, you can put the page number in the address line above, after dividing the number of comments by 50. See how it says page/7? That’s because there are over 300 comments but less than 351. I’m a genius.

  • Panos,

    check out http://www.couchsurfing.com
    once you get a profile there, you can contact people, and crash on their couch in C/Ville…for free :)
    Great way of meeting people.

    Thanks! That’ll do for now.

    I started subscribing to this blog using RSS feeds right after I missed out on the deadline for the Emerging Photographer’s Fund. The RSS feeds however, only bring to your box blog postings, not comments. Since David’s Rocky Mountain Gold nuggets are often in the comments, I wonder if there is a way to add DAH’s comments to the RSS feeder.

  • (anton runs out to the store looking for a calculator which can divide by 50)


    Your Lucky Light series is sumptuous plus plus. Let me know if you’ll be selling any prints from the series.

  • Getting to last page, simply change the page number to 6, or 7 or whatever in the url. Do the math. 50 comments to a page, mostly.

  • david alan harvey


    nobody seems to know what happened to my coffee maker…everything in boxes….late night last …..going to deli for coffee take out…and back here sometime soon…i did stay out too late, but i was actually working…i have a short commission to “interpret New York”…any way i want (except no violence or overt sex)…now i know what you will say…”wait a minute, isn’t dah supposed to be shooting families?”..yes, i am..but i also have to pay for that personal project and this short commission seems like a really nice way to do it…and it segues right into Look3 anyway….and i have so many contact sheets to see from my last few weeks of shooting…i am afraid to look…anyway, coffee now, back soonest….

    cheers, david

    yeyeye great idea :)))) we GOTTA meet up with Bob at look3 for those bluesy bluesy lyrics… “underscore” some images…

    i’m comfortably forgetting right now that i cannot sing or even play an instrument… or that i will be walking around with a “pre-PANOS” tee saying “surviving my first DAH workshop”



  • Paul,
    Let me know what you’re interested in—I can hook you up. (Deep discounts for photo friends!)


  • david alan harvey


    i will ask Mike about your RSS feeder question..you should know by now that i seriously have no clue about those things…ironic actually that i am using the net to communicate since i know so little about it…


    interpreting ny sounds fantastic..enjoy and looking forward to seeing the images

  • david alan harvey

    LINDA O…

    i will try to have James here online either today or tomorrow…but, i already know the answer to your question to him about “random” pictures…you were not here when it was a public subject..go back a few months and see the post about who among some iconic photographers carries and camera on their “off hours” and who does not…James Nachtwey was one of the ones who never carries a camera with him if he is not “working”..he was with me while i was shooting for much of last night…no camera…many photographers here on this forum who took our class in Bangkok last fall will attest to the fact that Jim does not shoot random pictures…will anyone from that class please “second” my observation???

    anyway, i will make sure you hear in his own words an explanation of why he does not shoot when not on assignment…he has one…

    cheers, david

  • again

    ladies and gents,,,

    national anthem below…

  • DAVID,
    have you found the link to my bus ride on the previous page?
    (I know, I know… but I’m dying here to hear your opinion! :-!)

  • DAVID ..
    forget the coffee…

    START WITH A BEER… put some Jim Morrison… on

    and send please send me a nice edit feedback…
    I know Jim wont help me coz i called him “ugly”
    last night… but he shouldnt care coz Cathy’s movie star
    friend gave him a 10…!!!?
    What the hell do i know???

    nice day for editing “Panotopia or Panopolis”..
    what do you think…???


    going to drive…
    David remember no coffee… get yourself a cold beer…

  • Panos, I was thinking you needed something by the Flaming Lips, but that sounds perfect.

  • Panos… I can’t see a single picutre on your website, both home and at workplace… iexplore and firefox…tried for last few days… white letters and black background…

  • david alan harvey


    i love the bus ride photographs that i could see on the first link (classic Aleksander ), but your second link had music but no pictures….did i do something wrong??

  • david alan harvey


    i am all for what works for you , but a cold beer in the morning would not work for me…not without a hammock that is…wait a minute, what am i talking about…i already had a cold beer this morning…at 3am!!!

    anyway, one more cup of coffee, and i will go into your link for an edit…

  • David – its all ok! the second link was just in case you couldn’t hear the music in the first one…! :-) how do you feel – would it be ok for look3?

  • David, I have an entire book on interpreting New York. I will not self publish it, however, as I want this done right with the best people designing it, etc.. This is my dream book and I’ve been shooting it since 1994. You got my dream assignment right there. Looking forward very much to seeing what you choose to show.

    Interpreting New York from 1999…

  • Here’s another from 2001…

    Now, I wonder if I have enough time to put my Magnum folio together. Interrupted by too many family issues. Today, for a few more hours at least, I have some time TO MYSELF.

    Good hunting David.

    David McGowan
    I’ve made a note to myself as regards wanting a print of yours. It will be after my move to London in July. Too much going on at the moment. BUT I WANT ONE AND WILL BUY ONE from the Luck Light series. Just too too beautiful to let it pass me by. Must have one on my wall to remind me of the magic of light and children. Mind you, my kids remind me everyday.

    I guess I just wish that I’d made that series and not you.

    Thank you.

  • Dear All,

    In preparation for the possible guest visit of James Nachtwey, thought people may like to visit/revisit a slice of his movie, War Photographer, that appeared the other day on the Frontline Club’s (of London) blog (another very good blog by the way) ….


    Also, I stumbled upon this hour-long interview with Henri Cartier Bresson today that I thought people may find interesting. Quite surprising to find such a long interview, as he was apparently rather averse to giving interviews. Can you confirm this David? Any thoughts on him you can share with us?

    Best to All,

  • Dear David,

    Here am I ! ^^

    I’m so sorry too late response to you.
    As you know, it takes one hour for me to read and understand only 10 comments…
    There are too many comments…here..^^

    My answer is :

    1. Assignment: the title is ‘Re- tour’
    I’ve taken pictures at acquarium at this time.
    I have no idea if this word ‘re-tour’ exist in english or french.
    It means recurrence of life… transmigration of souls… instinct of returnig home,,,,
    I want to show you some pictures of it.


    In galleries, you can see… Please give me some points.
    If it is not suitable for an assingnment. i’ll try other subject.

    I’ve made this web since Apr. this year.
    I hope to show it to you and this forum friends first.

    2. I’m really really pleased with the final resultof my project ‘Island’
    and very happy to be attended in Look3 show.
    I respect your editing and enjoy it very much.
    Thank you.^^


  • david alan harvey


    this is so tough to edit without being able to drop into an editing program…nightmare..anyway, here is a really rought first “go thru”..but, honestly i am nor sure i saw everything…was there a second page?? ..and i do remember a couple of pictures from before that i did not see here….so, please take my first “rough” and put them all in a new link along with any you think i missed…trying to look at them larger was too too hard…

    anyway, let’s get this down a bit….

    keep these for now, plus what you think i missed…

    1,100,101,102,111,112,113,114,116,117,12,120,121,125,127, 128,129,13,132,130,134,135,138,140,20,24,3,31,33,50, 54, 6

    damn right..
    how did skip them???
    which song would you like David McG?
    how about “Jesus loves Heroin”??
    or the ” She don’t use Jelly.. she uses Vaseline”

  • Tom, I am fascinated by your description of the start of your collaboration with the Hutterite colony that has opened their doors–even, for now, just a wee bit–to you and your camera. Please continue sharing with us as you did today. I not only learned more than I’d ever known about the Hutterites, but also learned from your example how to tread gently and gain people’s trust before rushing in with my camera. And, as far as I’m concerned, I can wait for the photos. Following your process through words is an education in itself. Thanks so much.


  • Slightly creepy but my most personal picture for a long, long time. Not necessarily a brilliant picture, by any means, but a little arresting none the less. My Aunt at rest, finally…

    Now, back to shooting some humour after so many weeks…

  • Thanks for the HCB interview, Sean.

  • Kind of has a “Summertime” feel to me…

  • david alan harvey


    yes, Young Tom has described quite well the “process” for working on this kind of story..and if you have time, if you go back through the archives here, you will find quite a few posts and stories where we have discussed this very topic at length…i cannot remember all them, but i remember the story “Eye Contact” might be helpful along this same line ..it is pretty easy to scroll back through the older posts…

    also, keep quizzing Young Tom….he took our workshop in Bangkok and did so so well….i think his new project will be something very special….

    cheers, david

  • 안녕 Kyunghee,

    I have been looking at your photos on Lightstalkers and just wanted to say I really like them. I think the aquarium is a very good place for your dreamy (꿈결?), beautiful, surreal (초현실적이다?) style.

    Your pictures in the street remind me of one of David’s colleagues, Gueorgui Pinkhassov, maybe you will like his work….

    Keep shooting. I’m very much looking forward to seeing more of your photos soon!

    행운을 빕니다

    yes there is a second page..
    but I’m happy so far..

    I will make a new page with
    thank you.. Happy now.. 8:35 in LA..
    skipping coffee.. Going
    for a GUINNESS..

    Still no hotel for C/ville..
    is it legal to sleep in the streets there in c/ville??

  • david alan harvey


    you are terrific!!! this is a nice tight edit from you and very interesting project overall…yes, please continue with the aquarium work….so, i will show “Island” at Look3 and then when you are finished with “Re-tour” we will publish it here in a very nice way..yes, you may have to change the title i think because it does not really make sense in English for the photographs you have…we can work on this….

    peace, david

  • david alan harvey

    PANOS…are you coming to C’Ville??? that would be amazing…not sure this sleepy Virginia town is ready for you, but what the hell??? if you are coming, we can find someplace for you to stay i think….but, let me know soonest….

    i tried to go to the second page, but nothing happened….black….

    “Guinness is good for you”

  • yes YES YES YES
    mountain is coming to meet you

    I’m meeting Harvey and ALL..

    LOOK 3..

  • Shit. Now I really wish I could be there.

    Next time, for sure.

  • Panos

    Try the dorm rooms at the college…on the Look3 web site.
    I had trouble getting a room too…ended up having to book two different hotels to have accomodations for the entire stay and that was several weeks ago.

  • david alan harvey



    there is not a single reader here who would doubt your quote for a millisecond!!!

  • I’m making new link…
    right now…

    DAVID’S rough EDIT plus LEFTOVERS….( added 10 photos )


    PLEASE CHECK below…click link


    DAVID ROUGH EDIT PLUS LEFTOVERS.( 10 more photos )


    THANK YOU… HELP ME GET DONE…!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Hi David
    Long time no see great to see so many from the workshop taking part in this

  • David, boyhood project developing nicely. Will add video soon too. Need to get better sound recorder though. I’ll be using a simple Flip camera. Quality is terrific for what it is and perfect for the subject matter. Will rig it up with hi grade, stereo surround sound recording. Syncing the sound and images in post will be tricky. Looking forward to posting something in a couple of weeks.

  • Lisa, Patricia and David, thank you for the kind words and encouragement … and Panos for Bowie!!!

    It is so refreshing to really develop relationships with people to tell THEIR story in their own time. After years of rushing around in news on the editorial and business side, even if in a very small venue, where every second counted, not to mention every friggin’ quarter, and long-term projects were composed of minutes squeezed in here and there between obits and the latest “must have” items … it is a blessing to have time. For awhile it was a curse but i’m finding the measure of it now. And serious photography is still fairly new for me … stories are not, at least “literal” ones, which is the trap i keep falling back into … another reason this place is special to me, vital now in fact. Bangkok was a whole new world in many ways, as is this community … freedom, freedom, may i use it wisely :))

    We all say it and think it … but really, truly, this community here has become something very special and unique, an oasis in a desert of the same old cowpies on a new plain. This place, and it is a place, not one place but many spun through hundreds of individual realities, is not a mistake repeated.

    And Nachtwey’s answer, at least the one he gave in Bangkok, as to why he doesn’t walk around with a camera has stuck with me well. Profound in its simplicity … it sums up who he is in a broader context. I never saw him with a camera and I seem to remember David saying that in the 30 years he’d known James, he had never seen him take a picture. Nice man James Nachtwey, I mean as a person beyond his “work,” as if the two could be separated, both compassionate and spun of steel … a paradox perhaps, if only by comparison.

    …speeding across the plain … and i’m floating in a most peculiar way …

  • Hey…ha Kloie, Berlin Wenders girl.Ni hao….
    ……..Why would anyone focusing on specific topics carry a camera every day ?

  • …”both compassionate and spun of steel”, brilliant.

  • Tom, love your ferry series. Particularly in colour.

  • WOW, BKK WORKSHOP IS IN DA HOOOOOOUSE! ;))))…Hi kloie!..i feel like marina and i took that workshop with so many of y’all here…and now with Jim and david dancing cypernetically, that’s burnin’ down this house ;))…u, kat, tom, sis-lisa, and some “lurkers” i know are here…

    all the madness around Look3, god damn ya’ll, more David: DAVID, NOW I KNOW WHERE YOU GET YOUR TEENAGE JUICE/ENERGY :))))…

    KYUNG-HEE :))))…i AM SO SO HAPPY YOU HAVE FINALLY SHOWED PEOPLLE UR WORK…AS YOU KNOW, MARINA AND I LOVE LOVE ISLAND SO MUCH AND CANT WAIT TO BUY THE BOOK! :))))..i really love aquarium too! :)))..let’s show your aquarium story with my bones and a photo story from Marina :))))…it’ll blow folks away!!!! :)))

    SEAN :))…FUNNY, i told kyung-hee about Pinkhassov after seeing her Oslo stuff a few months ago…you’re totally on that brother…sorry, we wont get to meet in Va…

    DAVID; SORRY, we’ll miss u and jim on line, but i wrote something like 100 comments back to you and jim…

    PATRICIA: :))))…

    LINDA: wish i could meet y’all in charlottesville, but we’re not going…just not in the family budget…

    ok, ya’ll have fun…


  • I’m fascinated to hear that a photographer of the stature of James N has never been seen–by anyone here, including his buddy David & those of you who were in BKK with him–carrying a camera or even taking a pic. And then there’s DAH who says he ALWAYS has his camera with him and might take “random” (Is anything ever really random?) shots even when he’s in the middle of a series. How unique each of us is!

    To me one of the best parts of being disabled is that I get to use a mobility scooter with a nice big basket that holds my camera case. It’s gotten so I’d feel blind if I didn’t have my camera at the ready, like to REALLY see something I need to look at it through my viewfinder. I’m not saying this is good. It just is the way I am. For now anyway.

    What about you? How do you feel about carrying or not carrying your camera around?

  • DAVID,

    At work in the office but this is Friday afternoon, so I am allowed to blog for a few minutes….

    Would be great to have JIM on line with us…I do not know him personally but he seems to be the kind of person one would want to meet and get to know…He is one of the reasons I decided to go to Look3 and hear him in person….If you end up getting him to join us, I would maybe ask him whether has has become in a way “addicted” or “constrained” to showing the worse side of what is going on this planet…I have listened to him on videos etc saying that he just wants to be a witness and show the world what is going on and hopefully make a difference. He seems like such a geat human being who trully cares and I have no doubt that he is very genuine but from a photographic standpoint, when you have made a book like “INFERNO” and people somehow get used to see these horrible and unbearable pictures from him (assuming anyone can ever get used to seeing this….) does he somehow not feel “cornered” to look for the worse possible situation/ drama to photograph etc etc…I am not sure if I make any sense here but I remember that several of us as an example expressed some disappointement on his story of the Dalai Lama….somehow, maybe not consciously this did not look too “Nachtwey”…maybe not as impactful…

    My second question would possibly be to understand what he likes from photographic standpoint. Is he passionate about photography as a whole like you seem to be David, prepared to embrace very different authors or styles or is his real passion to “only” be a WAR photographer?

    That’s all. Great that you bring such inspiring individuals to this forum.

    Take Care.


    don’t tell Jim… that..
    but for me..
    … if one doesn’t carry a camera
    everywhere, even in the bathroom ..
    then he (she) is not a
    PASSIONATE photographer, in my book..
    photographer yes, PASSION no..
    BUSINESSMAN yes, ..
    IT LOOKS that there is nothing
    “RANDOMN” for JIM.
    all pre designed..!!!
    somebody please tell me I’m wrong!!!

    My parents were with me this weekend while attending my aunt’s funeral. I was in a mourning suit but had my camera bag with me. We were all over the city over the last few days taking care of things and my dad finally said to me, “I guess you’d feel naked without that thing?” (my camera bag).

    Not only would I feel naked without it, I’d be lopsided.

  • PANOS:

    I DONT CARRY A CAMERA WITH ME….in fact, i rarely carry one unless I am thinking “i am going to shoot today” (even if i dont)…i wrote long long comment about why under David’s post a few months back…so, i’ll tell u this: YOU ARE WRONG BROTHER!!


    im tired, tired…so, out of laziness, i’ll refer to my post here :)))


    here is what i wrote to David in response to the question: to carry or not to carry:

    “…it’s a bit like this: post-facto seeing…in other words, taking pics often allows me to re-see what i’d seen and then to re-see life surrounding, in other words, being a photographer, to me at least, is about reflection, rumination….

    reflection upon what it is we see, what is around us, to better be prepared and to absorb and to sense, deeply, what is around…that IS EXACTLY, why i dont always carry my camera and actually prefer never to carry my camera until im ‘ready’ to “make pictures”…i see amazing moments all the time, people, faces, places, moments and I used to think: “fuck, if i’d only had my camera…” but that was when i thought the pictures were what mattered, but in truth, for me, it’s the act of observation, swallowing, affinity, sensitivity: to be aware of what is around you so that you can better swallow and appreciate and ruminate and divine and taste and tell this passing life….actually, i get nervous around photographers who feel compelled to shoot everything/everyone/allthetime (David, I wont hold that against you amigo :)) ), but in truth for me photography has always been (at least now) like breathing…

    the breath of sight….

    i still love the alchemy and magic of making photographs (shit, i havent been a photographer, probably, long enough to weary of it), but it aint any longer about the pictures, the objects…it’s about the juice, the well-spring and swelling that the imagination of photography plants inside me and my life:

    i hope i feel and see things, not better or more clear, but with more appreciation…and that’s why i put my camera down and away for long periods of time (1 month, 2 months: once 6 months after I saw a moment jump to her death from a top of a building last October): so that i can see: with and without a camera ;))…

    questions for david: still contemplating that one ;))


  • ps. I AINT A BUSINESSMAN, OTHERWISE I’D BE THERE WITH YOU, ALONG WITH MARINA, TO DRINK AT LOOK3….YO, DOG, everyone is different, and that dont mean shit about passion y’all ;))))))))))))

  • PATRICIA, PANOS (your are wrong ;)…

    I have always my camera with me, but I can take a walk without shoot if I see nothing. But If I look at my viewfinder, It is because I decided to take the picture.

    After have saw “War photographer”, nobody can say James Nachtwey is not a passionate photographer. I think his “mission” have nothing to do with business (for have choose the war photography, he would be a very bad business man). I think it is about pain, humanity and a “have to” show the horrors of war. I would not like to be on a picture of JN.

  • BOB ..
    you signed with capital letters…!!!

    is this symbolic somehow..?..

    … but anyways… i fully agree with you…
    Its just me trying to tease and PROVOKE Jimmy…

    Please ( Bob, ALL ) ,
    I’m just a jerk…

    ps: James N… is a great , passionate photographer…
    … just playing… he is not “ugly” either…
    He is “HOT”…

  • time like this , i miss HERVE…


    BY THE WAY I DONT TAKE YOU ‘SERIOUSLY’ IN THE SENSE OF WHAT YOU WRITE BEING ATTACKING (REMEMBER, I WAS WITH YOU FROM DAY 1)…but (ok, i got sick of the caps, it’s totally obnoxious ;)) )…

    but I am serious about you as a person and I am serious that you putting all your passion into venice and all that great shit :))…someone has to stand up to all the shit you throw around here ;))…just AS HERVE AND MIKE AND A BUNCH OF OTHERS STAND UP TO ALL MY STUPID COMMENTS ;)))))))>>.

    I dont think you can provoke Big Jim…he’s seen way too fucking much to worry…just as i know u have and most of us….



  • Bob B you make me think of Minor White. One of his oft-quoted remarks is:

    “Often while traveling with a camera we arrive just as the sun slips over the horizon of a moment, too late to expose film, only time enough to expose our hearts.”

    That’s the whole point isn’t it? To expose our hearts.


  • Patricia! :))))

    THAT IS IT EXACTLY! :))))))…

    sorry for the caps ;))

    ok, i’ve used up my 1 hr/day quota time for internet…

    gotta run


    p.s. really dig the image Patricia of you at a techno rave and shooting :)))))…u r the best!

  • PAUL :))))))))))))))))))…

    (in tiny tiny letters): will do ;)))


    running (real)


  • I wrote this quite a while ago, but it seems particularly out of place now, so I just going to go with the flow and inflict it on everyone now. You want random? You cant get more random than this puppy. Carry on.

    Alcohol consumption is up here in our happy little burg, if the DUI statistics are anything to go by. I can’t explain why this should be so, only that is. The local gendarmes detained some fifty-seven people for driving under the influence within the city limits this past year, which is fourteen more than they stopped last year. So there are either more drunks on the road or the local Finest are getting better at catching them; proficiency in this area, unlike baseball, for example, is hard to measure statistically.

    Still, the presence of such a trend is somewhat disquieting, to say the least. The mixture of alcohol and almost any field of human endeavor you care to mention is almost universally disastrous, unless that field of human endeavor is making an ass of yourself. If that’s your aim, then by all means, top off the twenty Jello shots you’ve had in the past fifteen minutes with another one and a couple of beers for good measure, but before you do, give your best friend the keys to your car, this always assuming that he’s not just as crocked as you are. Otherwise, whatever it is you’re trying to do whilst under the influence, stop trying to do it; you will not succeed.

    One of the many things you should not do while under the influence is watch public television. I’m not speaking here of the children’s programming, which is fairly harmless even when combined with heavy drinking, although the hopelessly intoxicated will want to sing along with big birds and purple dinosaurs, or the political, news, or cultural programming, which alcohol makes even more soporific than it already is, putting the inebriated to sleep and keeping them off the road, thereby serving the greater good by promoting the cause of highway safety. No, I mean public television’s nature and science programming, which no one should watch unless completely sober.

    I bring this up because, as you may know, deer season recently ended here and my brothers, having killed, gutted, butchered, and otherwise disposed of one male deer, decided afterwards that reassembling the deer’s skeleton might be a good idea. They decided to do this on a Saturday afternoon after watching college football and gulped down enough beer to keep a team of Clydesdales scooting back and forth from the brewery for a couple of weeks, give or take a day. With the games over, they apparently turned to public television and watched a program about the deer problem now afflicting those of us here in the northeastern United States (I realize that deer afflict other areas as well, but we also deal with their attendant problems: our county’s leading export is Lyme disease, which we have more of than anyone else in the United States). Having watched the program and come to the conclusion that reassembling the deer’s skeleton would be a good idea; it’d be educational, one brother opined, although we all know what deer look like and don’t need any further exegesis on the subject.

    And as I said, they were in really no condition to tie their shoelaces, much less reassemble a deer. With the courage of their DUI convictions, however, they went out to the garage where the remains of the deer remained and set to work putting Bambi’s dad back together again. As you might imagine, if all the king’s horses and all the king’s men could not put a simple egg back together again, then how much more difficult must it be for a troop of drunks on an educational binge to disunravel a disassembled deer.

    At first, they thought they ought to try to put the meat back on the bones but that failed as they kept slipping in the offal mess they made on the garage floor (yeah, that was bad, I admit it) and then decided to just putting the skeleton back together again. For this purpose, the brothers and company (mostly drinking buddies) cracked out the scotch tape, the glue, and a thousand yard ball of twine that my brother keeps in the hope that someday he might get some use out of it. He bought the ball about five years ago, I think, and I think since then he’s used about forty yards of the stuff. There are only so many things you can use twine for, you know.

    Well, killing a deer is a lot easier than putting one back together again. I know this because my brothers called me down to help them, for reasons I’m pretty sure I don’t understand, since I know absolutely nothing about the anatomy of the white-tailed deer, and I found them in the middle of the garage with large numbers of bones glued together at odd angles and held together with twine and tape. I tried to make some heads or tails of the skeleton because I’m pretty sure they couldn’t, even though I’m no expert. A deer’s skull does not rest on its pelvis, I’m reasonably certain of that, and I am also sure that a deer’s ribs do not emanate from its front legs, but from the spine, the same as other vertebrates. There were also bits I didn’t understand at first, like the use of beer cans for the bones they couldn’t find or had stashed in the refrigerator with the meat still on them, said beer cans being reinforced with sticks and golf clubs. I’m no golfer, but I’m fairly certain that one of the buck’s front forelegs was a five iron.

    “So what do you think,” the brothers and their cohort announced grandly. I was not sure what I thought, or if I should tell men so far in a drunken stupor that they could actually ask me what I thought of their skeletal recreation. I tried to be diplomatic, but I couldn’t think of anything right off the top of my head, which is something that happens to me way too often, I think. In this case, though, the lucky entrance of a wife saved me from having to tell a none too convincing lie. I don’t have a wife, so this is not something I can prove with facts and figures, but it seems that most wives object to trying to clean clothing drenched with deer’s blood. And the brothers and the friendly cohort were dripping with deer’s blood; at least, the parts that hadn’t already dried to their skins dripped. One of the reasons I don’t have a wife is that loud, high-pitched scream that emanates from them when they see something like their husbands covered in deer’s blood, following by ferocious swearing and nagging of a fairly intense nature. I don’t spend a lot of time wallowing in deer’s blood; wallowing as a recreational activity has never really appealed to me, but I think I’ll skip that whole screaming thing, if it’s all the same to you. On the positive side–well, it might be positive; it’s purely a personal opinion, I think; they did manage to use another fifty yards of my brother’s old twine.

  • david alan harvey


    again, please go to the archives..this was a very big discussion here by most of us not long ago…please see the list of great photographers, some who do, and some who do not, carry a camera all the time…

    i know what Jim will say….what he told our class is that “photography” does not interest him for it’s own sake…for him, it is only a tool for showing the horrors and misdeeds of mankind…he has no interest in photographing “daily life”…this is not to say he does not enjoy daily life…he just does not see it as a photo subject for himself..but he loves photographs…all kinds…he is particularly interested in Gregory Crewdson …anyway, let’s hope he comes on line…

    cheers, david

  • BOB,
    please say hi to DIMA
    from uncle P..

  • It’s tough coming in late to THIS party! You folks have covered L-O-T-S of ground!!! Archives here I come…


  • david alan harvey


    ok, i have looked at your site…the good news is that you have several very strong photographs…the bad news is that you made me work too hard to get to them…..

    your very strongest work is in the “flood” (where i was surprised at the strong work you got out of it) and “Belarus” pieces…some truly beautiful photographs in there…take out the mediocre ones and you will have a strong portfolio…

    your weakest “chapter” was “Tweed”…i would take that off your site if i were you..it takes us nowhere…your romantic sentimental best sets you up, but then “Tweed” takes you down…seriously, i do not want to hurt your feelings…i hate being a critic when the person is not in the room with me to see my demeanor..my intent…i just know you would look better to any editor if Tweed were not there…

    so here is what you do…edit tight, go do more work now….mostly the latter…stay in touch…i will try to help as will many others here on this forum…

    oh yes, one last thing…i would like to see you in better control of your color…you are a bit flat, often overexposed…you need more saturation for this type of picture..high key is good for some situations and styles etc., but i think your subject matter requires a depth and richness in tone that you do not quite have….better light, better exposure…OR make “bad light” the “good light”…it is all about INTENT…when you do something “on purpose” viewers can tell….so if you are going to go “over”, make “over” work for you….my suggestion is saturation, but you may have another thought on this…if so, tell me tell me….

    cheers, david

  • david alan harvey


    work girl, work!! you can do it!!

    seriously, if you have more questions even after digging the archives, then i will be more than pleased to go over topics again..

    i must say this is one thing i never thought about when i started this forum…that inevitably “new people” would come on board and ask the same questions that the “first” people asked..pretty obvious obviously, but i didn’t think about it….i just rolled along thinking i am talking to the same people everyday and of course they all know what i said before !!!

    please let me (us) know what you what to know…if we do not have the answer, we will find someone who does!!

    cheers, david

  • Thanks, David. What I’d like to know now is whether or not I’m on the right track with some new work. Don’t rush, just when you have a free minute or two. It’s only 10 images and the title is very much a work in progress. BTW this work is about being disabled & is totally real but quite uncharacteristic. Just take it from me, it’s been a tough 3 days for this gimp.


    password: disability


  • Intent is the key word. Even “mistakes” can be a positive when done with intent. I often bring up Richar Billingham’s work on his family, and looking at the technical merits of the individual photos you wouldnt call them even barely adequate technically but overall theres an intent in his “errors” that complements his work.

  • Yep, definitely looking in the mirror. Really hard to bring into a photo essay but it seems to be taking shape. I am with the daughters and grandkids now. We are heading out tomorrow for a trip together.

    Where am I going to live indeed? I think I like Kentucky, believe it or not. Maybe it is because it is so close to my daughter and is so centrally located. Although, it is tornado alley.

    Looking forward to seeing you at Look3.


  • bobb–

    gee, i’m a little insulted that you’d think i’m all a quiver for mr nachtwey based on his photos alone.
    not by a long shot.
    but you don’t know me at all so i forgive you. ;)

    i love his photos, yes. but i have seen many videos of him speaking about his work as well.
    for me, he is almost like a Buddha on earth.
    (A Bodhisattva)
    selfless, humble and fully in the service to others, committing his Life to positive change in the world.

    just wanted to clarify.

    now for those here who have seen jim’s work. does anyone remember him speaking about an incident where everything was suddenly happening in very s-l-o-w motion? i’ve been looking for it and can’t recall where i saw it.
    a free print of your choice for anyone who can link me.



  • Katia– Wasn’t that the Peter Howe Sept 11 interview of each photojournalist covering it as it happened?

  • Katia,

    I believe that I saw this video of Jim on the VII website, this is one of the VII seminar videos. I have attached the lonk underneath. There are 3 parts, I cannot remember which one it was but it is there…Did I win??? Let me know if I can choose one print :):)


    Separately, there is another great speech from Jim that I have also attached underneath…..




  • KATIA: :))

    in lower capys ;))…just to clarify, i didnt think you (especially you) or anyone else here was all a quiver over Jim…what i meant was this: people are terrified or intimated in real life by folks who are in the best sense real human beings…i’ve never understood the whole hero worship gig at all…totally admire Jim profoundly, as a person first and as a photographer second, but I’ve known enough “great” people in my life (as in accomplished) to know that in truth what separates people, or rather, what often makes them great is often less about what others dream of or imagine :))…but, im not sure what i said that implied you, so i apologize in advance…

    I admire Jim and have tried to write about his work and his character as eloquently as I could in other places (like at LS) and other outlets when he or his work (including here when the Dali Lama pics were shown in time)…

    same goes with David. I love him to death and he has done so much for me and been such a good friend to me I cant begin to tell you, but i have never thought about david as a superman or god, only an incredibly honest and open and vulnerable and brilliant person who gives, also a great photographer and a great teacher, who like all people has a complicated nature and is just flat out giving…Jim the same, though in different ways…

    i realize now that probably what i wrote about people all aquiver is or has been interpreted by others in the same way (david, you mad at me? ;) ), but as usual, the blog aint the best way to chat…and most often my comments are not so much directed at anyone here but as comments about my own experience as a phtoographer around photographers, known and unknown…

    sorry for the confusion Katia..

    by the way, jim’s commitment is what i admire the most about him…David’s description of his relationship to photography is also pretty much the slant that I related to…

    admiring someone isn’t going “all aquiver”…what i meant was folks that worship…or also, fear the “great ones”…that’s what i meant…i see it all the time ;)))

    ok, sorry…

    bob’s shutting up

    slouching toward bedroom ;)


    I got a room


    C/ville here I come…

    I got a room..

    Thank you David for trying..
    you’re my only INSIDER there..

    Thank you
    thank you

    I GOT A ROOM..

    … 62 phonecalls later…

    Love you ALL..

  • David and ALL — Thanks for your thoughts and answers on the “Does Jim ever take ‘Random’ pictures” question and I look forward to hearing if and what he has to add…
    Makes sense that after having the intent to focus us on such difficult situations it would be hard to relax and enjoy shooting “daily life moments” that cross one’s path, however I have to disagree with the Dalai Lama disappointment shared by some… That reportage showed range, real range because it was so different than “signature Nachtwey” yet equally powerful. In his work he seems to have the intention of leaving his ego at the door and just letting the subject(s) express themselves through his camera to us. While the style is his, it’s not about him. The Dalai Lama portraiture is coming from a completely different space than most Nachtwey subjects who are suffering, and this new work exemplified an opposite look at life. From the space of trying to be positive (and possibly spiritual) and it felt and read “true” to me, but if you look on the Vii website and see the additional photos of this reportage — the demonstrating monks portraying anguish in their Tibet plight – those scream “Nachtwey made these.” He showed the full perspective of the plight of Tibet from top to bottom, karmic to Zen and in Tom Hyde’s words – “compassionate and spun of steel ” although I think in this case the words describe the work as well. When I saw this photo essay all I could think was that Jim must have had an incredible journey in the process, running every gamut of emotion and drawing every ounce of energy to get it right; it didn’t look easy, and it made my heart sing.

  • David– What about the second question?! :)

    Anton– Yes, Lyrics at Look3!!!

    Bob– We will miss you, but toast in your honor!

    Panos– Glad you will not be “Homeless in that little town.” Insider connection?

    Cathy– Yes, look me up next time you’re in MB. BBQ!

    Tom– Thanks for the lovely glimpse into what appears to be the beginnings of an extraordinary story and journey!

    Kunghee– Love your use of color!

  • DAVID, ALL….

    Wow struggling to keep up here!! 422 comments!… I don’t have an internet connection close right now, so sorry for my lack of communication or anything I may have missed. I am really pleased that you took my idea for the link page. It will save so much time! And is a really easy way to check out all the members work here.

    With regard to the cemetery assignment, please let me know what you want to see/do next?… Your main concern to date was regarding a lack of an overall/opening shot, so the meantime I will get an edit together of this type— we can then hopefully decide on the best, or most suitable one.

    Not sure which images in particular you liked from the last set, and I do of course have more stuff that you haven’t seen (although don’t want to overload you!). Not sure how you want to play this?… Please let me know.

    I start the next project on Friday, so things will get busy for me again after then. I have time right now (although no internet connection close, damn it!) but I hope we can push forward on this in the coming week.

    Also, if you still want images for Look3 please let me know what you need from me.

    Cheers mate!



  • David,
    just sent you an e-mail.

  • david alan harvey

    LINDA O..

    i am lost..what second question??

  • DAVID AND ALL! :))

    Good morning, this will be very very quick post.

    DAVID, our good friend and photographer extraordinaire James Whitlow Delano has posted a link to his recent pictures of the aftermath of the Mayanmar (Burma) Cyclone. The WORK IS EXTRAORDINARY, HEART-TUBMLING AND COURAGEOUS. It is so important the people see the work, especially here so that see what happened and continues to happen in Burma.

    He posted the link at your “post for new links”


    you can also go directly here:


    i hope that you look …

    more later

  • david alan harvey


    you told me to send you an email, but i saw no e-address….

    in any case, i did a short review of your site for you…

    let me know if you see it….

  • David– this question is for BOTH you and Jim… Your work is profound for different reasons. Is there one picture you made that you are most satisfied with? — that you got to be there making that picture, and if so — what is the picture and can you share why.

    Is the topic of “random” involved… A random moment or situation that brought you there to make the picture or was it intent or both?

    With satisfaction — was it personal or was “making a difference” involved in this sense of satisfaction?

  • Bob,

    why did your friend go “arty” on such journalistic work (myanmar cyclone), vignetting, pushed processing? Awful.

    Apart this, when they said on the News lately a tribe unknown to the rest of mankind had been seen from the sky, why did I think they meant Burma/Myanmar?

    Sad, sad, sad.

  • Wow, dead deer goes over like lead balloon. Tough crowd, tough crowd. In any case, way back at the beginning of this thread (you guys remember the beginning of this thread, right?) Mr Harvey asked me to do a one picture assignment, a picture of something photographed in low light. I tried to think of something different; I didnt want to do something everyone’s already seen; and for a while there I really couldnt think of anything to shoot, other than the deer that keep eating my mother’s hedges. It’s not that I begrudge them the hedge, of course; everybody’s got to eat; it’s just that I hate having to listen to my mother rant about the damn deer afterwards and then yell at me as though the deer eating the hedges is somehow my fault. While reading my boy BobB’s latest post and wishing that I had his facility with words; I’m sure I’m not the only one here who’s noticed that Bob can apparently bat these long posts out at the drop of a ha (blatant Perelman ripoff there), whereas my own tendentious screeds appear here at much longer intervals. I think this is because Bob actually enjoys writing, whereas for me writing is like being stuck with the worst case of constipation you can imagine without any ExLax nearby to relieve the pressure. That’s a bit of a conundrum, now that I think about it; musicians love to play, photographers love to snap, actors love to act; most writers regard writing as painful drudgery at best, the party line being that writers do not love writing, they love having written. So the following is a slightly modified assignment; the one photo Mr Harvey requested is now five photos of the same thing, taken under a single light bulb in a darkened cubbyhole with my shirts hanging up to dry, although the shirts themselves do not make an appearance in the pictures. So, without much more fanfare, in five pictures, why I dont like writing:


  • david alan harvey


    i just spoke with James N….i think we will get together tomorrow afternoon about 1pm NYC time….i know this is probably the worst possible time for many of you, but i have no choice…i have to shoot later in the afternoon and Jim is busy also, so this is the best we can do….again, this interview is NOT A PROMISE to you…anything can happen between now and then for both of our schedules…but i am trying to make it work…so, please view it in that light…

    do not ask your questions now…

    they will get lost between now and then…

    but maybe you could start posting about noon tomorrow my time….and i doubt James will be able to answer all of your questions, so the most provocative and intelligent and brief will rise to the top…he will talk, i will type…..


    cheers, david

    p.s. i will create a new post for this interview to make it easier for all…any question left under this post will not be seen…

  • http://www.chicagofolkandroots.org/

    Hey David, that’s a good time. Sun, beer and wine, music, dancing, neighborhood families. Good light settles on folks ready to dance to the final act.

  • david alan harvey


    i might try to make this one…many thanks


    Will you just type or will also give your comments? ;-))

    A quick question (again…):
    DO you already have dates for your workshop in NY, in October?

    And two projects I’d be glad if you could see:


    Offshore life:

  • bobb–

    thank you dear. :))

    linda o–

    no, the slow-motion factor was not mentioned in peter howe’s interview with jim.
    but thank you anyway. :)

    eric– yes, you win!!! :D

    i knew it wasn’t in TED because it was during a talk that he wasn’t reading from a script. and i had just re-watched 2 videos on vii and it wasn’t there. but yes! it was mentioned in the 9-11 video which escaped my eyes when i was on the site yesterday.
    the reason i wanted to see it again was that this ‘phenomenon’ happened to me quite recently. i was photographing in a park and a softball was coming toward me hard and fast. but the whole scene was playing in ultra-slow-motion. i saw every twist and turn of the ball as it sailed toward me and later i remembered that the same kind of thing happened to jim.

    so email me for your prize, ok? :))


    and thank you!!


  • Dear David,
    Thank you very much for your nice mentor. ^^
    I’ll continue my project of aquarium and think about the title of it.

    Hi! Sean,
    Congraturations on your award!
    And thanks for your very kind comments.
    I have seen your works … They’re very thoughtful and nice.^^

    Hi! Bob,
    I always admire at your warm heart.^^
    My book will be published on Sep. or Oct. this year.
    If it is come out, I want to show it you, Marina and forum friends first.
    Thank you very much.

    Hi! Linda,
    Thank you. ^^
    I enjoy your works very much.


  • david alan harvey


    ok good….now put somebody in this picture…maybe you….in the mirror..literally or figuratively…or a member of your family….try it please…

    cheers, david

  • Hey Panos, great stuff. I’m a big fan of Go Away Move, Demon and Victim 2, Venice 69, Dancer 440, Happy Times Venice 4, Beach Stressfulll, 14, Street Performers, Second Thoughts, Scottie Entering Bistro (love that one) and probably many more. I’m not a big fan of the obvious sunset shots, or at least they don’t really fit with these (IMO.)

    I wish my story could take on the pace of this—I feel like it’s going to take all summer to get this many great shots—but the nature of what I’m shooting has to be deliberate, so the stories are slow.

    Anyway I’m looking forward to partying with you at Look3. I was going to say there’s a group of street kids in Charlottesville you could hang with (and probably have productive nights of shooting) but I’m glad you got a room. I’ve already got 4 guys crammed in a small room at the Red Roof Inn.

    It’s gonna rock!


  • DAH, if you do, let me know—I’ll go for sure and hook you up with a place to stay in the neighborhood.

  • David Mc G… yes , yes, yes, yes, yes and yes…
    so yes… little party never harmed anyone…
    Lets shoot little movies to share with ALL,
    when we come back… little moments… here and there…
    not fancy bullshit movies..

    no, no no no… not my kinda place…
    I prefer the ladies…. they smell better….
    honestly… when it comes to guys,
    I can barely stand my ownself…


  • Howdy All,

    Thanks David for the Look3 slideshow…can feel the funness and intimacy of the festival. i am very envious of all of you going there…but i am sure there will be a next time…

    thanks also to Katia for bringing up the interesting event that happened to her, about the ultra slow motion experience. anyone else experienced this??

    Eric, thanks for the JN links…

    are having 28C (or about 82F) on this wonderful evening in berlin…kinda sad having to leave here, but at the same time all for the best…

    gotta run…party to attend…


  • Hey let’s not create any controversy—I prefer the ladies too (agree with you on odor) sometimes too much for my own good—but ya gotta do what ya gotta do. Hopefully I’m not sleeping much anyway. Woke up on DAHs hotel room floor last year—it’s that kind of party!

  • AKAKY :))))))

    you should know that I LOVE THE DUI-/DEER ESSAY very much!!…I loved it the first time i read it which was a few months (a year??) ago when you first posted it: either here or at Lightstalkers…i can remember…and, yup, yup, i RE-READ it too…I just hadnt had time to write…this blog is becoming insane insane to keep up…and i only give myself now 1 hr (in total) to go on web, which means: dah, nytimes, ls, my email, villagevoice, and if i have time some surfing about photo/books/friends…SO…as for writing at a drop of a hat, well…for long posts yea,…that’s got i have lots to say ;)), or more truthfully, very little to say, but it takes me a ridiculously large amount of words to get it spit out…as for “writing”..yes, i love it AND I HATE IT!…like you, i sit down at write “seriously”…i just sent 2 things (short poem and long prose-poem) to a magazine for publication and im also trying to write the Bones of time essay that will accompany my photo assignment for david this summer, so yes, sitting down and writing is like going to your dentist, or in your case, your Parrot ;))..i also tediously tediously revise/edit…i just dont do that here, i spit out words and thoughts…the re-writng comes later ;))…by the way I LOVE THE PICS of the pencils and notebooks and tablets..up until 4 years ago, i was the same (long hand, pen/pencil, revision) and now i try to type into Word and revise with pen on porch/bedroom/toilet/subway.. etc ;))…like david, i’d love to see a person…cause w1/2 the shit about the pain of writing is the work, the other 1/2 is the incredible loneliness and frustration…believe me, i understand ;))…somehow, those pics reminded me of John Cheever…it’s why i, sadly often have to drink to prepare to write, and sleep little…edit sober, write aflame….

    but, i love the deers and you yapping about it…no matter what your mom says ;)))


  • WARNING: LONG POST #2 ;)) (at the drop of a hat, for Akaky ;)) )…


    Ok, i understand your frustration but if you allow, i’d like to offer something for you and the others to ponder with regard to James work on Mayanmar and others..

    The truth is your reaction to his photograph seems to be a common/prevalent reaction to people about work that somehow they cannot relate to or feel frustrated by do to the “photographers involvement”. The truth is that the same kind of criticism that you’ve launched at James photos is the same kind of critique that has, from time to time, been launched at Nachtwey, Richards, Salgado, Moriyama, Kuwayama and countless others. The truth is, I do not understand this kind of attack.

    PHotography is, a priori, a stylization, an artifice, a lie, a manufactured anesthetized document that purports to speak about the living and the dead. In fact, photography is simply another language that we use, with its own syntax and morphology and grammar, in order to ruminate upon this disappearing life. Nachtwey has often been criticized for “anesthetizing” or “beautifying” death and suffering and I have NEVER NEVER understood the logic of this attack against Jim or any other photographer/report. Photography is a language and the most honest photographers to me are the ones that speak within the voice that they have, shoot with the decisions and internal logic of their own convictions. People all the time use euphemism for death, for sorrow, for sex. For example, I never never say: “pass away” or “move on” or “departed” to describe when a person dies. I also say, for example when expressing condolences someone: I am sorry to learn of the death of your… but for many this is too “direct” or this can be seen as disrespectful or not empathetic. “I am sorry for your loss” is a neat and tidy way to describe death and often people resort to this or other euphemisms as a way to deal with the suffering and pain they are experiencing. Photography is no different. There are many people who felt “offended” by the photographs of the children who died during the cyclone, just as there are many media outlets (tv, newspapers, magazines, internet sites) that will not sure imagery of this sort, be it 911, or a hurricane or Iraq or a death. I do not like this kind of sanitization, but i understand that each person must confront death and sorrow in their own personal manner. James photographic style is not something he “invented” or “came up with” for this story. His photographic style (i LOATHE THIS WORD), his photographic vocabulary is reflective of a deeper philosophy about his life and the way he lives. His style has been this (the high contrast, the saturation, the melancholic tone, the references to older techniques) way for more than 15 years. If James is going to photographic in the aftermath of the cyclone he can only do so in the vernacular that marks the entire language of this life’s work. I really would encourage you to visit his site or familiarize yourself with his work before you castigate the mayanmar work.

    Let me also say this about James. Unlike many world spot-news photographers, James has dedicated his life to Asia (and has lived there ) for more than 20 years. James did not “fly into the dead zone” in the aftermath of the cyclone, but rather was there working on a project, in the capital, when the cyclone hit. James’ attempt to make sense of the suffering and destruction and the death and to offer his own photographic voice as a way for the world to see what had happened to people he cares a great deal about is the vehicle that drives his work and this particular reporting. His commitment to the people of Mayanmar goes back longer, much longer, than the events of this past winter, including predating the world’s interest in the unrest there. If anything, James wanted this work to be indelible for one reason: to speak and to show so that others would not forget or others would understand the suffering that was inflicted by this cyclone as well as by the reaction of the government junta.

    It is an impossibility to ruminate upon death and sorrow, particularly the sorrow of others. The world of Photojournalists are often criticised for their “grief tourism”, and while I loathe this description too, I understand the concern that many have for a group of international, mostly affluent, mostly western or western-trained/thinking journalists dancing from place of sorrow and destruction to place of sorrow and destruction as an act of living in order to aggrandize their own work, reputation or concerns. The truth, however, is that most of these committed men and women (photographers, writers, aid workers) do this for one reason and one reason only: to speak out in order to address much of what ills our humanity. Each of us, for the most part, live in extraordinary circumstances of power and entitlement and wealth. In fact, if a photographer (or anyone else for that matter) uses the privilege that they were bequeath as a way to help, to speak out, to bridge the suffering that so many experience, I stand up with them in union. James’ work is not art-shit. James’s work is courageous and he is tired and angry and heart broken by what has happened there and wants all to see and all not to forget the people there. Yes, the photographs dont look like “clean, clear” digi snaps. but I ask you, frankly: how is one image less aesthtesized, less “arty” then another. If you look at the work of Brady or Sullivan from the Civil War, or look at the work of Felice Beato taken in china in the 1860’s or Capa on D;Day, or the cellphone pics from the London Tube bombing, there is no moral or ethical difference, only the attempt to express what has happened.

    I value, in a person, the honest attempt to speak upon that which she saw. I value the attempt of anyone to speak out against the press of the horror of things, to make sense of the senselessness and the irreconciliable. James work might look “arty” but is there ever anykind of photograph, any kind of description of destruction that is most honest, most “objective.” No. One must ask themselves, has the person, in the best way that they can, spoken to describe what has happened as a way to communicate, to communicate the suffering and the pain that the other experienced. In our overly jaded and cynical world, we’ve been blemished by the need to scour, to make all precise and clear. I have always found the “objective” mode of work quite depressing because it seemed, to me, even more of an anesthetization, even more of a punk lie. but each of us has different orientations and perspectives.

    I will never forget that young child in the river with the torn rope around her ankle…and i am trying everything in accordance to make people see that and not forget it and take it into their lives and offer up, in anyway they can help….

    the stylization of a photograph doesnt bother me in the least, because there is not one image that is more or less stylized, what does bother me is the confusion of defining an images intent by it’s appearance…Orwell and Faulkner both wrote about war and death in incredibly different wways, and both sere the heart and soul…

    ..I hope that makes sense..


  • You did that just to taunt me, didnt you, Bob? In happier news, the pizza guy down the street likes my pics of his place and so I am $200 richer right now. Woo hoo! To be honest, I dont really like the pics of his place, but then I dont like his pizza either (the crust is too thin and papery, I think) but I eat it anyway, so these things even out in the end, I suppose. On the other hand, the customer is always right, so I guess it doesnt matter if I like the pics or not, does it?

  • Herve,

    At the recent photo festival here, Simon Norfolk was asked about the validity of aestheticizing war in his pictures taken in Afganistan…

    Paraphrasing, he said he has only a second or two to capture a viewer’s attention, and if by making “beautiful” pictures it extends the viewers attention by a few more seconds, that gives him more time to get his message across…

    Then he pantomimed… saying his pictures are like “c’m here, c’m here, c’m here… POW! (punch in the nose).

    I kind of buy his point… I don’t think an aesthetic voice is necessarily at odds with very difficult pictures.

    But, on the other hand, if the pitch isn’t perfect… risks getting in the way?

  • DAVID..

    Very good (and long!) answer!
    I mean just because the images are beautiful doesn’t mean they are less true. I’m tired of hearing about objectivity in photography, because it just doesn’t exist.
    If we would portray war in an ugly way, maybe more Tunbjörk or Parr style wouldn’t mean they would be more “true”. Because allthough I think both of them are great photographers I don’t think many of their images are beautiful. Not very beautiful, but highly interesting, but more true? NO
    Also if looking at old paintings covering tragedy they usually also are beautiful. I think there’s some beauty in tragedy. It’s in those situations what really matters in life shows..


  • Slowwww mooootion … yes … and fast.

    Two years ago I totaled an older toyota pickup. Hit ice on a bridge and felt the back of the truck slowly sliding around, went into a spin, missed the semi next to me … and things went into slow motion spinning, panic but almost peaceful, like a movie … then WHAM, I hit the concrete barrier at a 45 degree angle at 55mph. The violence, speed and sound of it was … it was like waking up and being alive for the first time, very strange … everything incredibly fast and then spinning, slow motion again, punctuated by violent crashes and time juxtapositions. Cops said I hit the barriers, first one side and then the other, four times. I remember two. I was a pinball. And then I saw myself, arms akimbo, mouth open in a yell, reflected in the chrome bumper of the semi-truck just before it hit me driver-side door … everything was very sloooowwww. I remember yelling, “Goddamnit, not the semi too!,” and then thinking not a good time to take the lord’s name in vain … and i’m agnostic. The truck driver saved my life, he had slowed down without losing control on the ice … otherwise Major Flat Tom, or at least severely creased. My truck was totaled, all windows smashed, frame bent, not all four wheels still on the ground … and other than a few cuts, many bruises, and feeling for a week like Gumby … I was fine. No question, seatbelt saved my life by the way. Time is something of an intellectual construct so the manipulation of it in our brains during traumatic events makes a certain degree of sense. Life is short and, as the tow truck driver later put it, I’m “one lucky son of a bitch.”

    Read Camus’ The Stranger if your interested in the manipulation of time …

  • Bob, thanks for your reply, as well as Mike’s, though I never said anything about aestheticizing pictures “in general”, for or againgst.

    Just that I found what this guy did, looked like crap( which, is come to think of it, the contrary of aesthetic!). IMO, Period.

    Still, I see a contradiction in what you, Bob, wrote. Fine that you think James’ work best illustrates what you feel about these peoples ordeal, or informs you, but then you opine against more straightforward pictures, though they may, AND DO ACTUALLY, touch and sensitize other people (if other than you)to human suffering.

    That you happen to be one who’d quickly turn the page over such “objective” work, for fear of depression and being lied to (?!?!?), in no way does disqualify them. If so, that would be elitism, something I think you want being no part of.

    Not everyone needs pixels or negatives to become, in short, works of art to emphasize with others suffering. Gee, quite a few of us do not even need pictures to emphasize with these people.

    Of note, the most horrendous pictures I saw from the monks revolt last September (Burma again) were snapshots that some of them took with small cameras, possibly cell phones.

    What depresses me is not their artless objectivity, but that you’d look at them as lies (your word) as the result of the manner they were taken with and edited, rather than what (my “what” again!) they beg you to see.

    Of course, I know you wouldn’t, and… That’s my point! ;-)

  • BOB..

    Sorry. My reply was meant for you and not David. I’m a bit tired today.


  • HERVE :)))

    just got back from a long walk (3 hours) with mrs. black :))…and i think i have only like 5 minutes left on my allocated time for web (and I still have to write Glenn Cambell an email)…sorry about my bloated comment…

    Just for quick clarification :))..I dont think “arty” stuff is any more important than non-arty stuff. In fact, I agree: the abu ghrabi digi pigs are among the most significant imagery of war and torture i’ve ever seen…and you are totally right, some of the most important pictures i’ve seen in the last 25 years have come from the entire spectrum of the photographic lexicon: “art”, “objective” pjs, objective/subjective amateurs, cell phones, video snaps, security camers, webcams etc etc. To me, it has never been in total about the “look” of a picture, but the CONTENT and how that story has been told to me. I’ve seen photographs and read stories, im sad to admit, of atrocity and tragedy that hasn’t had an impact on my sorry 21st century ass and then i’ve been stunned into nightmare by other pics and reports.

    You dont have to convince me about needing film or pixels to be “art”, in fact, im not even really that interested in the whole “art” discussion, in the sense of quantifying what is and isnt “art” or good “photography”…believe it or not, im much simpler about all these things: the the photograph, in whatever form or skin or presentation, compel me to want to know more, stun me, or make me curious or teach me or surprise me. Ironically, i actually like very simple things (for example the extraordinary prose of Alexandra Fueller: read her books! :)) )..

    as for the idea of the pics from Mayanmar or any other picture being “lies”, what i meant is that no real image tells the truth, no image, and we must remember that: but does and can an image, be it a “pro” shot or be it a shot from a cellphone, tell us a story: HELL YES, THANK GOD! :)))))))…in fact, what I meant about “lies” Herve was that we become, often, de-sensitized or anestetized or, rather, we often (specially in our abundant and wealth-protected lives) become numb to real suffering around the world and in our lives and back yards. It is too easy (and often happens) that we see pics and we swallow as many as we can, and read as many books and stories and newspapers and news reports as we can in order to “know” so that we think we are good and valuable citizens, with a heightened and compassionate sensitivity and awareness for the plights of others…when in truth often we are not:

    just punch drunk on our own feelings…

    that’s what I mean. to me the “lie” of an image is that it is THE moment, or THE story…to me a photograph is only the BEGINNING of the story of a moment or people or place or tragedy. It is why PJG Vietnam Inc is so important to me, so important: cause i saw the pics first, before i knew f the book, and when i read the book (just as with Agees Let Us Know Praise Famous Men) in university, it was transcendent and punch-in-the-nose powerful…

    see, for me it is never about what a photograph looks like (arty vs straightforward, i dont know how to distingquish) or who makes the picture (pro or am) or how it is made (film, digital, sketch, video) or when (at the moment or later)…all that matters to me is the story that that picture compells…James would be the first to tell everyone that is pictures are not the only pictures that mean something nor would he ever compare photographs, only that the more people speak out about what happens in this life to each other, the better…

    and by the way, i know you were not besmirching his “style” but questioning the need for “art” in cases such as this…I appreciate your questions and perspective, that’s why i wrote so much :))…you’re a thoughtful person and I value this a great deal…

    in the end, i think the only condition that matters is this:

    are we as humans doing all we can to speak and act about the condition that surrounds us, using our tools and our priviledge and gifts and wealth (for me that would be my photographs and my writing and, when i have it, my money to help others) in the service of our collective humanity, including my family, friends, city and fellow humans all over…

    that’s always been my reason…and my cri de coeur….

    it’s a great discussion, i’d love to continue, but im being told my 1hr is dissipating…


    MIKE: LOVE THE STORY ABOUT SIMON :))..He’s a thoughtful guy as well..

    ok, running

    hugs ya’;ll


  • questioning the need for “art” in cases such as this…
    Not even. I thought I made that clear. I just did not see much in them, processed or not, as photos.

    The shot(s) of deserted Yangoon, has potential, there is a Goya-like element in it, truly churning. But it’s too… Journalistic!!! Objective!!! :-))))

    We understand he is shooting from a hotel room or some window. It substracts from the elemental power that he must truly have felt.

    I do not know him and his previous work, so I may be quite wrong but if anything, I’d venture he did not find his shots “that great” and tried to give them some impact afterwards, in which he was quite justified, but what can I do, the result doesn’t register with me.


    Great discussion- I’ve tried to catch up, but forgive me if I’m missing something: My take is that a photograph CAN tell a story, but whether that story is fact or fiction is never entirely clear to anyone other than the photographer. How we as viewers interpret each photograph is as crucial to the communication of the image as the perception, mood, and vision of the photographer.


  • Yes, Asher, we can look at these pictures and talk about them as photography, ie. subjectively.

    But aside from that, it is important to know that this cyclone (and the Junta’s mafia gang-like hold over the country) is not a fiction, or there to accommodate the subjectivity of an artist’s vision (all things James Nachtwey would say with a lot more authority than me).

    Reading a few replies to these photos on that blog, the guests did not confuse one bit what it was about either.

    More generally (stepping away from the cyclone pix), sometimes, something must be told, and the photos are simply not about photography
    (though they may be later, but not in the urgency of the moment they were shot…. I have a feeling that Nachtwey would never be interested in a retrospective of his work)

    I may not be able to be in front of the comp’ tomorrow mid-AM. I will check is David stars the post when I am still home. If not, Can I write my question to one of you to assk on my behalf?

  • Herve,

    I’m not denying the horror of the cyclone’s effect, nor the importance of relaying that horror to the rest of the world via imagery. However, every photograph is constrained by the photographer’s choices, which are in turn influenced, either consciously or subconsciously, by the photographer’s desire to portray the event as s/he perceives it. Natchwey has covered other events for which other photographers may have made choices that would tell a different story, given the exact same scene before them.

    Witnesses at a crime often give differing descriptions and accounts. It does not mean that they are dishonest or biased. We cannot help imposing our feelings, emotions, and deep rooted beliefs on the way we express ourselves.

  • Saturday night…
    Since I’m all alone here…

    America still at war…
    The Army, The Navy… Airforce…
    desperate for new people, recruits everywhere…

    recruits in Venice..
    organizing bodybuilding events, BOXING EVENTS…
    games, FUN, happiness , love, HARMONY..
    and then YOU sign…

    Please take a LOOK at 10 more photos from
    the Navy recruiting in Venice Beach.. their boxing games , etc..


  • tell a different story,

    Asher, you only want to see the photographic side of it. It makes sense on this blog. But a cyclone killing upward of 100 000 people, with 10 times that number destitute, tell me what is the other story!

    Look at the pictures Bob linked us to, and those that have been coming out since it happened 4 weeks ago. Whatever the treatment, it is about the flooding destruction and destitution of a population left to fend for itself for the large majority.

  • david alan harvey


    i do not have “one” picture that “satisfies me” more than the others…unless, of course, it is the very simple snapshot of my mother getting into the car that i randomly took when i was 14 that will be the cover of the upcoming “Off For A Family Drive”…

    basically, my books have my “favorites”… although the kinds of photographs i chose for Divided Soul are quite different than the ones i chose for Living Proof…and i chose for different reasons…

    i have INTENT always….but, i do not “plan” any individual picture….i do put myself in situations where i instinctively “feel” something significant may come out of it, but serendipity rules in my case….

    i do not have the illusion that i might “make a difference” in any direct way…i am just as interested in world events as the photographers who cover world events…and i studied 500 years of history and art and literature wrapped around the incursion of the Spanish and Portugese culture into the Americas just to do one essay which took me almost 20 years….

    but, i am more interested in creating a SENSITIVITY rather than assuming that a picture of a specific conflict, for example, is somehow going to “stop conflict”…

    look closely and you will see that almost all of my bodies of work have been wrapped around “conflict” or “injustice”…

    but my pictures are not “of conflict” directly…Cuba, Vietnam,Va. Ghetto, Native Americans,Spanish Conquest,Rap etc. are all subjects where i was emotionally involved in the various injustices that led to my interest in the subjects i chose…history is totally a part of my motivation always always…. but i am surely looking and feeling the subtlety of the little slices of life that tell us something about the people who either conquered or became conquered….

    i literally covered conflict in Cambodia and Nicaragua (where i met Jim), but found the work for me just not me….besides i noticed how quickly people forget specific “news events” and the pictures of “horror” which may have led to “winning a contest” for example were so so not anything about the overall context of culture, that i just took my own sensitivities into a broader view…as in anything else in life, i left certain jobs to others who were motivated differently for whatever reasons…we are an animal of specificity..no one of us can do much…most of us can do just one thing really well..but together there are no limits to what we can do…

    i was once with a young boy whose leg had just been blown off by a land mine while he was tending cattle in Cambodia…an “accident ” of war…there was little medical care…his father crawled into bed with him and stayed with him constantly for several days until he died…i was there the whole time….the picture was a double page spread in Natgeo along with a photo of mass graves below white puffy clouds, a result of the Khmer Rouge exterminations…did i reach anyone?? i do not know…but, from that point forward i decided it was more important, for me anyway, to show the humanity of a culture and perhaps the results of conflict in hopes that some government would not “drop a bomb” on the mother feeding her baby who is in my photograph just because she lives somewhere inside the “axis of evil” or because she lived someplace “under embargo”….maybe a congressman or two would see this picture, look into her eyes, and cast a vote in the right direction next time around….i am not sure her exhumed skull coming out of the muddy grave site in the jungle would have the same effect…but, who knows??

    frankly, i rarely go down this road of discussion…it feels very strange to me to tell people what they are supposed to be getting out of my work or even my intent….so these are a few of my deep down motivations, but what you “get out it” could be something else entirely…

    when Jim and i talk about world events etc., we share the same beliefs….we are totally on “the same page”….how we use our talents and our little cameras to perhaps “make a difference” , or perhaps not, is a personal choice based on our psychological makeup and our vision of the world as it comes roaring up to our front door…

    peace, david

  • DAVID,

    Recently I think I’ve discovered I may be a better “random” photographer. There’s always intent when I take pictures and motivation and I don’t bring my camera everywhere and always. But I may not work on a specific project when I go out and get my best images.
    The hard thing of working this way is all the questions I ask myself. How do I edit? how do I get published? can I ever end something? what would I call an upcoming book or exhibition? or are maybe my images just single “works” that don’t work together? I dunno…


  • HERVE,

    You wrote “Asher, you only want to see the photographic side of it. It makes sense on this blog. But a cyclone killing upward of 100 000 people, with 10 times that number destitute, tell me what is the other story!”

    I think you’re really missing my point. I was commenting on the discussion between you and Bob regarding the fact vs. fiction story-telling of a photograph. I don’t “only want to see the photographic side of it”, and I am not insensitive to the vast tragedy of the cyclone- quite the contrary. I was merely making the point that different observers will provide distinct perspectives, be they via the printed word, the image, or vocally. None is right or wrong or better than the other, just different perspectives of the same fact of the huge tragedy. That’s ALL I was saying. No need to type words in my mouth.

    David said it much clearer in his last post: “how we use our talents and our little cameras to perhaps “make a difference” , or perhaps not, is a personal choice based on our psychological makeup and our vision of the world as it comes roaring up to our front door…”


  • Maybe your words, Asher.
    A different perspective is not a different story, Asher. No disagreement on the diferent perpective, of course.

  • HERVE / ASHER :))))

    ASHER: I havent forgotten you :))…and will write you shortly :))…it’s been a intense week, and i looked at the pics :))))))))))!!!!…as to the matter above, I am in 100% agreement with you. I think that is the reason I originally was confused by Herve’s reaction to the pics. That is that each person TELLS an event in the same way they perceive it. James photographs, in not way, undermine the reality of the devastation of the cyclone nor do they subjegate the impoverishment of the their lives nor their strangulation at the hands of the junta…In fact, James work there (long before the world’s attention vis-a-vis the cyclone or the protests from the monks) has been to voice the poverty and enfranchisment of ot he people there…James photographs to me are NOT powerful because of their “style/appearance” but because he was there at the time of the event and he photographed directly what he saw with all the strength he knew how in order to speak about what happened…I am with you 100% :))

    HERVE: I think Asher’s point is an essential one and the same i was trying to make but not as succinctly. When we “react” to a photograph (My long, tedious comment was in reaction to your comment articulating your reaction to James pictures, which seem to imply that James work was “sad” because it elevated the importance of his “art” to the facts of the suffering: that was how i read your 1st comment, was I wrong??), we bring to it our own psychological and emotional belief in what constitutes “truth” or rather “good images” vs. “false” or “bad images.” I heard lots of people talk about this with Katrina and the Tsunami and 9/11 or the famines in Africa, etc. In fact, Alexandra Fuller writes about this quite powerfully in her remarkable book Scribbling the Cat, about Africa, specifically Zambia and the battlefields in Zimbabwe and Mozambique, following a scarred veteran of the Rhodesian Wars. (I cannot recommend this book more highly!). The fact is that yes, it is a disservice if we elevate the “image” about the event, this is particularly true with “news”, and there is a great deal of ambiguity and difficult questions (ethical, metaphysical) at play here…but I repeat what I wrote in the beginning, that to me the most important fact is the Story of what is happening and that story gets told in a variety of ways. As for Jim’s retrospective work…well, he’s had retrospective already…and the work still haunts, even if the events that were detailed at the time have past, because I believe that the best photographers, the best writers, the best aide workers, understand that the truth is that the attempt to speak upon the human plight and to make sure it never leaves the awareness of others is at the heart of all good work…

    but David’s long response is much much more eloquent and elegant than mine :)))))

    DAVID: that’s the word, indeed….that’s it indeed! :)))



    On the subject of photos changing something, someone in the world, I remember we had a few nay-sayers, and I wonder if they also think, feel that photography does not change anything in their own lives as well? And maybe also the lives of those closest to them?

    May I (leaving to work in 30 minutes) here:


    To elicit the best response, maybe the kind of help that will save one life, do you think that nowadays, photos should reach the right persons rather than the right media, ie. a wider public?
    How do you proceed so the photo reaches the very people that can make a difference, and save a life? Different subect, different channel? Thanks

  • HERVE,

    A different perspective (teller’s AND listener’s) can tell a different story of the same facts. Case in point: your interpretations of my posts are different from my intent, and from how others may interpret what I’m saying (such as Bob above).

    BOB- no worries about “delayed” responses. I’ve had meaningful interchanges with gaps of months (such as ours), and worthless interchanges that occur on a daily basis… If/when you can reply, it’s always welcome, no statute of limitations!


  • David,
    just sent 9 pix to Michael…….as archive may be too complicated….

  • Asher….

    You are right! ;-)

    Bob, major Black…;-0) (minor white, major black…Got it?)

    yes, you got it wrong. “sad” was not about the picture treatment, but about the situation in Burma, political that is. I am sure I specified it was apart from the comment on the pictures themselves.

    Retrospective. Bob, you know I was talking about Jim’s stance of bringing as much urgency to the events he covers, over a nice body of work! I was not exactly putting thoughts in his head, sorry if it seemed so.

    See with Asher about the Story in many ways, or different stories from same facts…. ;-)


  • … please, more “debates” Bob, Herve and Asher … much, much for thought, all well presented and said … and thank you David for a wonderful eloquent glimpse into motivation/approach, really much appreciated. Hmmm, i often wonder if we would get as much out of these discussions in person, and i often think not because strangely it is easier to “be here now” … here. Of course, i could be wrong since i have not met most of you. I’ve seen a photo of Bob, now I want to see a picture of Herve for my mental model of the bar … is this a dark Irish pub then? Guinness on tap :))


    Interesting discussion and I’d like to share my point of view.
    I also agree with Asher’s point of view and, as a non-english native speaker I can see how difficult can be to objectively express a point of view no matter which language you use.
    About the event in Myianmar, as many others, once most of us were not present we can just interpret the personal views of journalists and imagemakers (photo / video) describing their interpretation… And talking about journalism, in my humble opinion, it must be as objective as possible avoiding deviation from the fact itself.
    Photography, differently from a video register, is always subjective as we can have as many different approaches, perspectives, interpretations or whatever you call it, as we have people, human beings involved (tellers / listeners, as you put before.
    Well, it’s just another perspective. My personal perspective.

    All the best,

  • Well, now that the food is really flying, I
    might like to weigh in on my own behalf.

    I am glad that this series has raised the
    hair on the backs of people’s necks. Good.
    I would prefer not to discuss style. It is
    what it is. I shoot and see this way and
    that is pretty much it. That is for another

    I agree with Simon Norfolk, BTW, you have a
    micro-second to hammer a point. You take
    your shot and not everyone will agree with
    your choice. I will say this. The facts
    are as they appear The negs are shot
    straight with my Leica.

    I have shot reportage for almost 20 years,
    without seeking out disaster. That does not
    mean I do not take on difficult subjects. I
    was in Burma/Myanmar already and this
    horrible storm stole lives. The junta,
    I already knew, was ruthless, heartless
    and incompetent. That was why I believed
    I could get down to the Irrawaddy River
    Delta in the chaotic days that followed
    the storm.

    It was far worse than I had imagined. I
    had to tell this story. By far most of
    the bodies were women’s and childrens. I
    wanted the world to see, in whatever
    capacity I could muster, the utter neglect
    endured by a people already suffering
    under a government that does not care at
    all about its people. That is all. If
    you like the style. Good. If not? Fine.
    But the point is that as horrid as the
    photos look, the reality down there IS ten
    times worse still to this day.

    Those bodies will not be collected. DNA
    tests will not be taken. They will not
    ever be identified. Their families, if
    any members survived, will never find and
    bury their loved ones. That is what I
    was thinking about. These corpses were
    days before mothers and daughters mostly.

    You will not find an inventory or death
    and dying in my archive (http://www.digitalrailroad.net/jameswhitlowdelano/Default.aspx). I have, in
    fact, never photographed death like this
    before. In fact, I saw more dead human
    beings, people from nice families, in
    the first thirty minutes down there,
    than I had seen in my entire life.
    Not enjoyable business but I was surely
    not going to turn away when the
    photographs might actually effect concrete
    change. We bandy that statement around
    a lot but in this case, it might just

    That is what we do this for, no?

    Thanks for the healthy debate.

    Warm Regards,

    James Whitlow Delano

  • James Whitlow Delano– Really glad you chimed in here! I was just about to write something when you posted. After seeing such debate I looked at your work last night and was quite moved. The content was strong although the work slightly uneven, but still POWERFUL! I woke up this morning feeling I really needed to seek out some way to do something to help so your reportage did its job. Keep working.



  • J.W. Delano,

    Thanks for this work… some of your photographs are going to stay with me for a long time, if not forever.

    and David,

    Thanks for the 9:19 post and sharing your ideas about your work and experiences… eloquent and the more I read your words, the more I begin to understand the layers of your work…

  • David,

    thanks for the review, I am thinking now.


  • James Delano, thanks for barging in. I was not taken by your shots, or the treatment on them. I do not think that in itself is a big deal, It is not a judgement on you as a person, as a photographer, or even on ” using artistry in photo-journalism”.

    However I am taken by what happened in Burma over the last 10 months, and I am glad you are telling us, IN NO UNCERTAIN TERMS there could be but one Story to report on, that of the destruction by the cyclone and the helplessness of the people under an abject dictatorship.

    How we wish that better access could allow even more depth in coverage, and many different perspectives (stories within the Story) goes without saying.

  • DAVID :-)
    I’m not sure again if you’ve read my reply to your question… many things can go unnoticed in this stream of collective consciousness ;-) and I don’t want to litter the great great James N. topic… So: would you consider my bus ride for look3? If so, i would need to scan the pictures asap I guess…

    looking forward your response

  • david alan harvey


    i am still in the process of deciding what shows to use..we will let you know soonest….your work is terrific for sure, but i am just trying to BALANCE…

  • Herve:

    “James Delano, thanks for barging in…”

    it’s this kind of language that is so frustrating and disappointing, especially given your initial response to my post calling attention to James work (after he’d posted at David’s other link)…You spawned the discussion in your dismissive way, because of your specific reaction to his work. On its own, your opinion and reaction merits no mallice, however, that you have again seen fit to then castigate but another photographer is an indication to me that it is easier to dismiss than it is to countenance.

    It is the same sort of dismissiveness that I occurred earlier (and no, i dont want to be intereviewed either Herve, you have totally misunderstood my place here of my passion for David’s community)….you initiated the discussion with your critical reaction to James work (fair enough) but i find this comment totally dismissive…
    after he joined in the discussion as a means to react to the discussion…you reject him with language….the same happened with Philip when I tried to share his work (that video) with the blog…

    you’ll be happy to know that i’ve decided, however, to weigh in again in any discussion, it continually serves to divide and dismiss rather than sew…i’ll post from time to time only reactions to themes. I am worn out…and it’ll be the last time I encourage a friend and a photographer to pop up….

    best of luck.


  • typo: i meant that i will NOT again weigh in in a discussion, ..instead will leave, from time time, posts related to themes david posts and to, when asked, contribute photographic work…

  • BOB… i'm sorry to hear this… i feel your pain, really… and although i don't feel (being new here) that i can or should join this discussion at hand, i just want to say:

    PLEASE don't stop doing what you're doing, i absolutely welcomed your contribution introducing james' work, his images touched me (in a touching kind of way :)

    i'm already quite sad that you won't be able to make look3, so please don't make things worse…


    just kidding, i feel you. respect.

    and peace.
    and hugs.

  • Bob,
    ditto what anton said…

  • Bob, your problem is that you cannot accept that people (or me only, maybe) see things differently than you. If you read my answer to your first Delano post, you will see that it’s very simple, and quickly goes to the subject of the pictures, Burma.

    You, on the contrary, decided to bring in the big fires of art in PJ, and went on and on, putting all kind of intentions in my simple words, to serve your favored style of writing, namely rhapsodizing with almost endless variations on a few words. No criticism, i do admire your virtuosity with words and long-breathed thoughts. Kind of a “theme and variations” where the theme becomes a pretext to verbal pyrotechnics.

    Criticism: You talk about Philip, but just as here, you are the one who criticizes what someone (or me only, maybe) else feels. I dare you to find in any of my replies the same criticism that would question your feelings or opinions.

    Last, this is the second time that, taking your presence and words on David’s blog so fucking seriously, that you make me the culprit, the one to blame, the guilty for a decison (to post less) that is yours and yours only. I simply do not like it fair stigmatizing another member, from your piedestal of someone David said he would not do the blog without. I feel like I am up against Goliath, but without a sling: You are sure to win that contest. May that make you happy.

    Bob, you are way too susceptible. We have a saying in France when someone gets a bit too carried away and self-possessed:

    “Pete un coup, t’ es tout rouge”…

    ….Running now (of course) :-)))))

    PS: last on this, for this blog. if you wish, my e-mail is (don’t laugh!):


  • can i just saw that i love that you are encouraging conversation, encouraging thinking in your blog post. really really lovely & inspiring.

    as for my random pictures… i feel like they are a visual stream of consciousness. little bits of expression that arent associated with any established project but at the same time are associated with me, my thoughts, feelings, reactions.

    as for what i actually do with them –> the ones that i love or appreciate i post to my blog. which, i think, can be beneficial for my process as maybe there’s a seed of a future project – an idea – or style shift in the random pictures. after all, there was something compelling enough in the moment to demand an image be made.

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