many of you have seen this book before, but i am sure many of you have not….my first work in print….i publish it again here now only because my friend Masaaki Okada, who was the designer/editor, died on December 21….Masaaki was a tremendous influence on me as a person and as a photographer….my first collaborator…

i met Masaaki my senior year of high school….he barely spoke any English, had few friends, and had come from Japan to help out his uncle who ran a gift shop in Virginia Beach, Va…Masaaki and i ended up as college roommates and close friends…Masaaki was the most talented person i knew at the time …a brilliant man with a sketch pad and painter as well…from Masaaki i learned about Eastern art and about the concept of not making anyone lose face…the single most valuable concept i know….later, i went with Masaaki to Hamamatsu, Japan and met his whole family when i did a story on the Japanese kite fighters….

just after undergrad school, when Masaaki and i did Tell It Like It Is , we were idealists….the $2. contribution was to go to the local church and intended to buy food for the residents of the neighborhood where i did this story… i lived with this family for the better part of a summer….our goal was to save this Norfolk, Va. neighborhood and eliminate poverty  with this book…Masaaki and i were both 22…

Bruce Davidson is leaning on me to re-print this book (it pre-dates publication of East 100th Street by 3 yrs)…for only 4 copies of this book exist…..Masaaki and i threw away dozens of copies of  Tell It Like It Is,  not thinking they were of any real importance at the time…we sold few….after all , we were not important…living in a small Virginia town and not sensing any “place” in the photography world…Masaaki did not think it even appropriate to have my name, or his, on the cover….small type on the back jacket was all he would allow…i agreed…this was not about us, but about the people in the pictures….eastern humility…

a few weeks ago, i stopped by to see Masaaki in Richmond , Va. where he lived, a retired photographer from the Richmond Times-Dispatch…….in recent years i saw him rarely, but we picked up right where we left off….he thanked me for coming and gave me another one of his paintings from the outer banks where i now live…Masaaki was an avid surf fishermen and often painted the land that surrounds me…we talked of him coming down …i knew he would love the house, the space…but, that is not to be….

Masaaki’s paintings will grace my home always…more importantly his influence on me is forever….i did tell him this many times….he always shook his head in disbelief…..i wish i had told him even more…




3022 Responses to “face…”

  • Thanks for sharing the love, David. The pictures do not have one wrinkle in them, same as the soulful friendship that united Massaki and you.

  • a civilian-mass audience

    What not to Remember !!!

    VIVA MASAKI…where ever you are…WE DEFINITELY LOVE YOU !!!

  • DAVID,

    Touched by your story and sorry to hear about the loss of such a good longtime friend. I have a few such friends, and know how I would feel about losing them. Recently I was reunited with one such, after a 42-yr. hiatus, and yes, it was like no time had passed. Wish I had time at the moment to write more, I am under a looming deadline, but you know that I know what a life-long friendship with a Japanese gentleman or lady is like, and my thoughts go out to you.


  • mmmmmm…

  • Friendship… one of the most important gifts… un abbraccio..

  • Thank you for sharing Masaaki with us, David. I’ve often heard you speak of him and the profound influence he has had on your life. But when you told us of Masaaki’s death on Monday I did not recognize his name. Such a loss, to you and to all who knew him personally or through his work as an artist and photographer. Thank God you took the time to visit him recently.

    The older I get the more I realize that when my time to die approaches, my only regrets will be what I neglected to do, not what I did. One of my dearest friends in the world, Nan Merrill, is within days and at the most, weeks, of her death after years of living with cancer. We talk on the phone every other day and I cannot tell you how grateful I am that I drove the 750 miles to visit her in Vermont for a few days last July. Like Masaaki for you, Nan opened my eyes to new ways of looking at and living in the world. She says she is ready to go and I’m trying to get past my selfish reluctance to let her go. Masaaki, on the other hand, had no time to consciously prepare for his death, but it sounds like he lived his life in such a way that he was always ready. What is hard is letting him go. David, I am with you in my heart as you travel this lonely path. No one can know what you are feeling but in celebrating Masaaki here you are helping him live forever in the world. Take care of yourself and allow the grief to come. Tears are healing.

    warm hugs

  • David,

    my deepest condolences. thanks for sharing your words with us. alhough i have never experienced the passing of a close friend, i resonate so much with the way you speak of your bond, relationship and his influence on you. the impact of someone like that is such an amazing thing.

    maybe it IS time to re-publish Tell It Like It Is!

    merry christmas and happy holidays,


  • a civilian-mass audience


    hmmm…once a dyslexic …always a BURNIAN !!!

  • Thanks for sharing this with us David. One of my uncles passed away the day before yesterday so will have a funeral to go to within the next couple of days. It always seems more poingnant at this time of year…

  • Great images and a touching story. The same form of idealism is what got me into photography. I hope you do choose to republish.

    Sorry for your loss. Losing long-time friends can be tougher than losing family. Happy holidays to you and all the Burn family.

  • David:

    “and will move now towards some hard copy production in both magazine and book formats….”

    that’s what you wrote in the previous post.. wouldn’t know a better way to start than with Tell It Like It Is…

  • So sorry for the loss, for all he was and for all he meant for you, but smile thinking of him, as you will always have him in your heart, specially through that first book. If you finally reprint it, I will buy a copy for sure. I just love it.

  • David, I’ll add my condolences for your loss but also congratulations for having such a wonderful friend for so many years.

    I continue to marvel at your early work. Were you born with that wonderful sense for composition or did you have to study a lot to learn it way back when?

    Your insight about the importance of not making people lose face gives one a lot to ponder. It’s something I learned intellectually a long time ago but have never been able to consistently put into practice. Sometimes it feels like the issue at hand is just too important, that it overrides any concern for feelings — and maybe sometimes it is, but I suspect those instances are very rare. Then you throw in the emotionally distant nature of interacting with strangers on the internet and it’s just too easy to hurt people. And people are quite different. It apparently takes more empathy than I’ve got to recognize most people’s tolerance levels for criticism, especially younger people. Your experience with brutal critiques in J-school is probably very close to my experience at a similar school. And those were different times all around, well before the self-esteem movement. I can appreciate harsh criticism if it’s insightful and ignore it if it’s malicious, but I suspect a lot of that has to do with my upbringing in a hyper-critical environment. It takes discipline not to project one’s own emotional makeup and tolerance levels onto others. Anyway, I’ve no doubt it’s much better for all involved to err on the side of being nice, of not making people lose face. You’re truly an inspiration in that regard and I’ve enjoyed learning a little about the person who inspired you, albeit in unhappy circumstances.

    Anyway, thanks and happy Xmas. To all.

  • My condolences to you and to the family of your dear friend.

    I would LOVE to see this book reprinted. Have you considered going back to show how the community has fared since you did the book? I’d definitely buy it.

    I know you don’t remember me, but you were my team captain on the white team during the 3rd Eddie Adams Workshop in 1990. Your guidance and encouragement during those 4 days helped me immensely and continues to do so. I sincerely appreciate that!

    Timothy Ivy

  • David

    Thanks for sharing your story with us.

    How wonderful to have had such a powerful friendship for so long a time. Our friendships are a gift to us, and the downside of having deep friendships is the pain of loosing them. The final gift is the reminder to live fully, live in the present, and love each other. You seem to do that in abundance already.

  • …….re-printing this book, will allow the journey to rekindle and travel once again.

  • beautiful..

  • David.

    Interesting book. Never saw it. On what I see here one can tell you’re tall.

    As for the never make anyone lose face I don’t quite agree. Let’s not make a general rule out of it. Some people deserve to and lose face and be compromised.

  • David,
    Sorry to hear about the passing of your friend. Thank you so much for sharing this story with us, and I think it would be a wonderful homage to re-publish and distribute Tell It Like It Is.

    My thoughts are with you and all the ones I love. Thank you for the mortality check and bringing the ability to reconsider the important things to the forefront…

    Friendship… love… family… art… these are the stories of our lives. Tell it like it is…

  • Typo:

    Some people deserve to and lose face and be compromised.
    Some people deserve to lose face and be compromised.

  • David,
    it is sad to hear that you have lost a close friend. A great man. To share the story about your friendship and showing the “Tell It Like It Is” series is a wonderful way to express what he meant to you.
    Last year on December 23rd a good friend of mine, Marco, passed away – he was only 40 years old – cancer. He was my hero and my first teacher in journalistic photography. So this time of year reminds me again of his loss. It still hurts. Loosing a good friend always cuts deep and so far I have no cure for it. At the same time I feel so glad that I had the chance and the luck to shared some time with him. I guess that is all we can do – enjoy the time with the people that are arround us.

    A time to mourn,
    a time to cherish friendship,
    a time to say thank you,
    a time to be quiet,
    a time to cry,
    a time to hope.


  • My deepest condolences for your loss David. From what I read, you friend Masaaki was a good artist and better person, so I am sure he’ll have a good place up there. May he rest in peace.

  • Honest pictures. It is easily apparent when photographs are made for the right reasons. Beautiful.

  • DAH,

    Beautiful story. Thanks for sharing it with us as we share in your loss.

    On the subject of timeless photographs and those who influence us, I have just scanned one of my favorite photos EVER of yours…from the 1994 (?) NG Pow Wow story. I recently “discovered” it at my local library in San Diego where they sell old NG’s. It’s the two page spread of several dancers getting ready…now that is my kind of shot if ever there was one. Packed with layers, filled to the brim with action…every bit of it gorgeous.

    Wish I could share it here but all I have is two scanned pages.

    If you (or anyone else) is interested in posting it here I’ll be happy to send it to whoever.

  • David

    About not causing others to lose face..that is a hugely important part of Costa Rican culture..at the expense of all else, in fact. The way you practice the art is the way it should be practiced. You graciously acknowledge the position another has taken and then assert yourself in a uniquely non-judgemental way. There is no doubt where you stand on a subject yet you do not aim to obliterate your rival. In this country, not losing face is more important than honesty, morality, reality. It´s a sort of hypocritical dignity that assumes a paramount role in social interaction. I am with John Vink. Sometimes a case must be made for the truth, even if it is at the expense of someone´s dignity. But if that case can be made as graciously as you manage to make yours then i have to say that you have elevated ¨saving face¨ to a very high road indeed, and an art form as well. Not all who practice that concept bother with the niceties of right and wrong because saving face is the only right, there is no wrong.

    I was very touched by these early photos of yours because they show your keen humanity and compassion. My favorite is the little girl sitting on the street, as if perched regally smack in the middle of the Milky Way, surrounded by her own private constellation, awash in stardust and dusty comet trails, stony meteorites worshipping at her feet. The way she leans to the left, it´s as if she´s contemplating her own set of planets as they orbit around her, dependant on her every sway and sashay, her ageless tidal pull.

    Please. Republish. This limited edition, plus the Cyclos camera bags (remember those?)..raise some money for YOUR hood, YOUR 62 year old ideals. Tell me one person who would not line up to have a copy of this wonderful work?!

    Masaaki says ¨be like Nike. Just do it¨…my sincere condolences at this grievous loss of your friend. But not the loss of your friendship. Go forward in the spirit of that friendship, you now speak for the both of you. A heavy burden considering what a fine man this was. I am sad for you, but hapñpy too that you carry his legacy with you. Masaaki cpuld not be prouder.

    Merry Christmas, David!


    friendship, love, family, art…
    these are the stories of our lives….
    tell it like it is…..
    a time to mourn
    a time to cherish friendship…
    to say thank you….
    a time to be quiet
    to cry
    to hope………
    thank you…….

  • Sorry to hear of your loss David. Good friends are hard to come by, though you seem to have many these days on this great place you gave us and that must make you feel good for all you have planned for here in the new year. Been very busy will try and participate more this coming year.

  • Wendy


  • KAT

  • my deepest condolences david.

  • DAVID,

    Sorry to hear about the loss of your friend… I know that you closest friends are like family so it must be tough indeed to be mourning such a close friend…

    I very much love the story of your first book… Hard to believe you were able to do such an accomplished book while being so young… idealist you were back then and somehow, it seems like years have passed and this idealism is still very much in you… it must be what keeps you so young still and alive… I am sure that this is a trait of your character that Massaki must have enjoyed very much… If you do reprint this book, count me in for a copy of it….

    Hope you can still enjoy Chistmas with your family despite this sad news.



    laughing a bit…one of the things Masaaki said to me at the time, was that i was too tall to be a photographer…and too many pictures from the standing position…by coincidence, most of them are here..if you go to my website, you will see the others in the book from a bit lower…after Masaaki’s comment and in the years that followed, i paid a whole lot more attention to my height…yet, the one picture that had a life outside the book at the time, the horizontal of the girl sitting in the road (MOMA exhibit) was shot from my “too tall” standing position….

    about losing face…i will err on the side of not making anyone lose face…i probably often go too far in showing respect to someone who later proves i have misplaced this respect…i have been burned more than a few times in this regard…however, once i have been totally dissed by someone , and a line has been crossed, then i too do go the other way …still, i will give anyone the benefit of the doubt many times over always always searching searching for the positive side…there is usually at least a layer than can be tapped for good energy…..


    i am pleased you discovered the pow wow essay and i was even going to mention it to you when i saw your rainbow and late afternoon light pow wow picture from Taos (i think)..please hold off on linking that picture here only because i am going to start a series of publishing just a tiny wee bit of my own work from time to time for totally educational purposes…i do know that at workshops and when i do lectures, people really respond when they know the story behind the story…most students tell me this is one of their favorite parts of any class…i always tend to shy away from showing my own work unless forced or for some other reason (as here with Masaaki), but all of my “advisers” are telling me i must do this more..in any case, if it helps some , then i will do it…thanks for the mention of that particular picture..one of my own favorites too…

    some commentators here have also mentioned that i show on Burn too many of my students work…actually, i show very little of my students work and i plan to show more of it..why should my students, who are mostly advanced photographers, be penalized because they happen to be students of mine?..many travel from all over the world to advance their work and their standing, so it simply does not make sense that they would not be displayed on Burn if and when appropriate…i do spend about 30% of my time teaching and Burn is a part of my whole educational bit…..so, i think what i will do is perhaps show from time to time the entire class mm show that Mike always produces..without taking away any of the content sent in by readers…adding , not subtracting….in other words, simply more pictures for all here to see….i do not see any downside …your thoughts?


    i read your comment after i read and responded to John Vink….i know you are both right….the concept of saving face cannot be placed above the truth…i think my learning of “saving face” was simply quite valuable to me as a young man because i was totally surrounded by the Western macho ” i win…you lose” mentality…win win win..beat beat beat…compete compete compete…so to meet an eastern man with a different view of all of this was refreshing to say the least…of course , any philosophy can be taken to extremes and mis-interpreted or mis-used…thanks for your view on this….

    i have read all your e-mails…i need some time to digest as you can imagine..lots going on right now…anyway i would not make YOU lose face by thinking i was not paying attention!!!

    so, you are going to stay at the Burn Hotel…cool…the keys will come from either Mike Courvoisier or Chris Anderson who also lives in the building…i will let you know in the next couple of days and need your exact arrival time…


    yes, i guess i am pretty much the same as always….i do not think any of us change much after a certain point…slight modifications or adjustments, but all of us i think have the character we develop at an early age….in my case, i was very lucky…two parents with lots of integrity….to the core…as a teenager i tried like hell to break away from their core values and succeeded to some extent…but alas, drawn back to the center….

    cheers, david

  • I like his bold yet anonymous design on this one. I’ve been discusing with friends different sorts of publications as of late (like really small ones) and I’d have loved to hear his views. David, maybe that’s the way it should be republished? As a little bold black and white fanzine? It could almost still sell for 2 dollars, but you might have to put it up to 5.

  • Merry Christmas David and all Burnians.

    Masaaki photographed my wife mowing her little lawn in the Fan in the 1980’s.
    We were dating at the time… She was so proud that Masaaki was the guy who
    made the picture. Small moments…


    i love love small publications…good idea…yea, 2 bucks would be perfect , but maybe impractical…i will see….this work will also be a part of my current work on American Family …in the preface or beginning or whatever of this larger book and body of work…..but in addition , as a separate inexpensive book, the way it was originally, might be the very best way to go…thanks for thinking…

    cheers, david


    wait a minute…you lived in Richmond in the 80″s?? you knew Masaaki?? did we meet?? i lived in Richmond in the 80’s…what i am i missing in this equation? you never mentioned this when we spoke by phone….or, am i just not remembering something obvious?…that happens.

  • No, No. My wife is born and raised there. I would sweep into town and visit. Long distance relationships can work… 26 years under the same roof. Oh the RTD was such a great paper then and I actually interviewed with one of the picture editors when I was at a conference in Richmond in early 90’s.

    Ah it was not to be. Let’s skype some time and I’ll try to fill in the gaps.

  • David,

    My condolences too… remember though that you where lucky to even have such a good friend for so long.

    As for showing more samples of your work and from your workshops on Burn… please do so!!
    (Don’t know if I talk for everyone here but,) two of the main reasons I spend the time to follow all the essays and discussions here are for my *education* into what other people are doing, why, and sometimes how, and the *motivation* I get to go out and realize my own project ideas by feeling a member of the global family you’re building.

    A serene winter landscape from Cyprus…
    Happy holidays all…

  • Ahh the Fan … a few fond hangovers from there … perhaps the only place I could enjoy living in RIC today, and one of the few places there I would still recognize. I was a northside kid. It was a good paper but the editorial page was a different story … I do remember getting the tour a time or two in The News Leader darkroom from some very patient photographers when I was a kid … I hope I didn’t turn on the light.

  • Happy holidays everyone … I’m filling my wife’s stocking and drinking Bailey’s and coffee. Shhhh … Eugene Smith Jazz Loft … I know … shhh … what’s not to love?

  • a civilian-mass audience

    I AM STILL DANCING … I haven’t stopped…and I am in the middle of a big project
    and I am still dancing …hicks…hicks…

    BURN and BURN until you BURN…
    BURN and BURN until you BURB …!!!

  • i’ve recently lost someone too; just buried her yesterday.

    now a holiday becomes an anniversary… strange.

    my Condolences David.

  • My deep felt condolences, David. I hope you did manage to contact your friend’s family in Japan?

    I, like everybody else, would LOVE to see this book reprinted. I’d definitely buy it, too.

  • a civilian-mass audience

    ATTN: My apologies for the above comment…
    ATTN: Can someone please transfer my comment above to the BURNIANS area…???
    Thank you in advance for the assistance !!!

    P.S again, I am so sorry…I wasn’t focus…:(((

  • a civilian-mass audience

    To ALL:

    “…“This is my wish for you: Comfort on difficult days, smiles when sadness intrudes, rainbows to follow the clouds, laughter to kiss your lips, sunsets to warm your heart, hugs when spirits sag, beauty for your eyes to see, friendships to brighten your being, faith so that you can believe, confidence for when you doubt, courage to know yourself, patience to accept the truth, Love to complete your life.”

    Quote by…hmmm…I am not focused today …
    The above post …stays here.

    P.S VASILIOS …you BURNIAN soul…we are with You!!!

  • @David: by the way, you seem a natural to twittering

    btw, gallery coming soon:


    funny Joni, i had never even heard of Twitter until a few weeks ago and didn’t even know what it really was until a day before Anton and Kerry signed me up…both said particularly good for when i simply cannot be here…which is going to be the next couple of weeks…with my shooting coming up i will not be in here for comments much….the advantage of Twitter is of course i can simply text message…and texting is my primary way of quick chatting …so it is easy for me and convenient…anyway, we will see how it goes…cool on the gallery…thanks for the link…

    cheers, david

  • Vasilios

    My condolences to you! I am so sorry for your loss :((



    interesting how we all continue to be surprised by the two most common things on the planet…birth and death…my condolences to you as well….

    NOW we need a new baby around here…anybody???

    cheers, david

  • a new baby around here…anybody??? ………… I am sure if you ask politely south of the equator someone will help you out

  • .. and in the meantime Simone might just be there … any cute kittenpics?

  • yesyes – a reprint would be great.. of a still relevant book.. perhaps thats the shocker for me – that it is still relevant, much like the reprint of PJGs vietnam inc.. which was only a little more expensive than ‘tell it’, back then.. you were ambitious with pricing :ø)=

    peaceful thoughts for you remembering your friend david.. you have a fine legacy to rekindle.

    hmm.. truth.. giving second chances and the like..
    it may be from working in the music industry, where only the very best and very worst kinds of people survive.. but i have trouble giving more than the 2nd chance.
    there are so many people out there to meet and so many people to learn quickly from and then loose..

    i must tell you a couple of stories one day david – or more likely show you the written accounts which might make it into the book.. short stories to peel back the varnish and .. ‘ahem’.. tell it like it is.
    must consult my lawyer friend first though.

    aphex twin once said that one of the pleasures of living is to hurt people who deserve to be hurt..
    that goes a little far for me in it’s self conscious karmic manor.. i lean towards vinks summary having known some of the worst out there.. and still meeting some with the same eyes as some of the worst..

    MERRY CHRISTMAS ALL.. a day late and all that..


  • NOW we need a new baby around here…anybody???


    well, not exactly NEW since little Samuele is already 3 months and half old (and over 15 pounds!)… traces of him are spreading around the house ;)

  • ha – abele..
    you have a new, never ending photo project..

  • thanks David… you are at least one year inside a similar project, arent’t you? ;)

  • yes indeed… 15 months and counting.. yesterday on ‘the’ day i took more than 300 of the family.. daily average is probably 50.. there has always normally been a camera on the coffee table

    the thing is what to do with them all?
    they don’t fit anywhere into my other work.. and looking back through them takes ages.. my intention is to edit into a ‘first year’ slideshow for friends n family, (and for him in later years), to include the birth and all that..

    the first 3 months are fun.. gets very busy very soon :ø)


    LOVE the Twitter Feed! Seems like a good way for us Burnians to stay feeling connected with you even when you don’t have time to read or post comments in the usual way. Might this work when you’re busy-busy-busy on assignment in Rio?

    Regarding the possibility of your reprinting Tell It Like It is…please do! I saw the original at your loft during the October 2008 loft workshop and its raw power has stayed with me. Of all your work that I have seen, this hits closest to the bone. You snapped every photo not with your finger but with your heart. And as David Bowen says, it is as timely today as when you lived it over 40 years ago. Sadly so.

    Travel safely back home today…


  • ALL-

    fyi: david is traveling today but will keep in touch

    by the way, when on assignment in Rio, david will be posting daily updates through twitter, so we all can get an insider’s view on what’s happening at the shoot… get a feel for what it’s really like… i believe many interesting things to come… stay tuned…


  • patricia –

    just read your comment :-) yes we did set up twitter especially for situations/assignments like Rio…


  • Civi and Kathleen and David,

    Thank you for the words; you’re right, it is interesting how we don’t fully accept the inherent strangeness of life in death; I suppose another tragedy would be if we did.

    Perhaps we can add twitter to that list! (although, at this point, people would find it STRANGE if you didn’t accept twitter).


  • a civilian-mass audience

    TO MR.HARVEY and to all BURNIANS out there

    “Travel safe and arrive happy.”

    Sri Sathya Sai Baba (Indian Spiritual leader, b.1926)!!!

  • ACMA …. did u jst happen to hear the greek version of a sathya sai baba song ?? my brother did production fr a sai baba album for in 5-6 European languages .. he would be delighted to know if it has reached greece …

  • David B

    “there has always normally been a camera on the coffee table”

    yeah, indeed… and a small camcorder too, to catch small clips here and there (I am still forcing myself to admit that in some cases still images are not enough ;)

    About “editing”, I’m just collecting the weirdest pictures in a separate folder, literally let them piling up to have a good look in the future if something good comes up..

  • Death is not strange, it is common. What is strange is how few of us, knowing from a young age of its inevitability, fail to come to grips with it and are devastated when it comes to those we love.

  • apropos of Patricia’s note — the new TWITTER FEED with DAH’s TWEETS — what does “social media” mean and what makes it worthwhile? i’m following a couple of dozen folks on my twitter account, just out of curiosity … A lot of them say the same things, at least at the beginning — as DAH does — in line at the airport, in seat 26A — checking in, checking out, eating a sandwich, eating a sandwich with friends… perhaps it all just makes us realize that people, no matter how successful or who they are, are just thinking about that next sandwich? Same with my facebook “friends:” — my son in a fun outfit, my dog in the snow, what I think about Friday Night Lights — i don’t know… too much trivial information?

  • DQ

    The trivial is what makes up our life. I”ve not gotten into twittering or facebooking myself but am finding DAH’s twitters to be concise, humanizing and often containing a touch of his wry sense of humor. I like it.

    So how do other Burnians feel about DAH’s twitters?


  • When my mother died some 9 years ago, I got the following words, which I want to share with you:
    They helped me in some way…

    for some the tweets may be trivial, but for others they aren’t. When the only thing a friend is thinking about is “sandwich”, then this friend is safe and happy, don’t you agree? …and the followers feel connected.

  • a civilian-mass audience

    “…“The most instructive experiences are those of EVERYDAY LIFE ”
    Friedrich Nietzsche

    I am a fan…and if you take into consideration that my last name is MASS AUDIENCE …
    then, yes…Sai Baba’s album …has reached Greece …!!!

  • a civilian-mass audience



  • a civilian-mass audience

    MR.HARVEY …be strong…we are sending good energy…

    and also we are sending…hmmm…some salt, alcohol, silents…!!!

  • Death is not strange, it is common. What is strange is how few of us, knowing from a young age of its inevitability, fail to come to grips with it and are devastated when it comes to those we love.
    Much strangeness comes from things surrounding us, trivial and hardly noticed. Photography is one of the nedium that quite apt to bring this up.


    If it was so common, why did you feel the need to report the loss and your grief when one of your friend died, back in the beginning of the year? (Actually, what was less common is that you stopped posting for quite a while after that announcement).

  • Ere…. I was replying to Jim’s post.

  • am finding DAH’s twitters to be concise, humanizing and often containing a touch of his wry sense of humor. I like it.

    What’s new?


  • the two most common things on the planet…birth and death…
    Hola david, what happened to sex?…. No sex, no birth…. and plenty of sex may not mean any birth. So:

    sex and death first, then birth 3rd? ;-)

  • Thomas,
    thanks for the link. These words show a good way to deal with the loss of a close person. Thank you!

    twitter felt rather strange and almost silly to me, some kind of gimmick or modern nonsense.
    Even the word twitter sounded very strange to my ear.
    After reading several of these twitter related posts here, I dared to check it out myelf and so I spotted David’s twitter messages on this web page. I have to admit that I like it. David’s good sense of humor makes it fun to read. Beiing able to follow the various stages of David’s odyssey – like now in a snow trapped plane – is pretty cool. Never thought I would like, but I do.
    However I cannot imagine myself twittering. I am way too lazy plus my life is a bit too banal. Are these messages supposed to appear on a mobile phone or on a special web page?

    Good news: some guys try to reanimate the good old Polaroid. They try to create a new kind of instant film using the old production site of Polaroid in Enschede, Netherlands.
    Never used Polaroid much myself because it was way too expensive, but I feel it is a nice way to create a very different look for images.
    Check this out: http://www.the-impossible-project.com

  • Herve, I think it appropriate to comment on someones passing. But I did not disappear because of her death. We were just going into a three week festival we have every spring here, and it’s pretty much nonstop for those weeks with the coverage. My friend would have kicked me in the rear had I stopped my normal life after her death. Damn bad timing on her part, to. :)

  • DAH: I am truly sad to hear of your loss. Since none of us ever knows when death will arrive at our door, it is important to say how we feel. I feel compelled to say the very same words you said to your friend, to you: your influence is on me forever David Alan Harvey.
    Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.

    It remains a mystery to me how a person can feel so close to another at great distance. I always find a way – by some means or other – to remain at great distance, albeit at times, subconsciously. The edge of the table is way far too close to me.

    Wishing you all the best for 2010.


  • Jim P.

    I believe it is just as safe to call death strange as to call it not strange. Not to wax philosophical on this thread, but it seems to depend on what belief/illusion we choose to accept.

    An existentialist would certainly find death strange, because the idea of non-existence is unfathomable.

    A Christian or Muslim might find the idea of death rewarding (assuming they’ve been consummate Christians/Muslims according to their respective religion (or at least repent)).

    Either way, life and death exist in the mind, and to say it is universally strange or not strange is a non-sequitur… it’s both a neither as everything seems to be at some point in our lives.

    I’d like to believe the death is just another illusion; more fitting I would call death Unbirth. But before birth, that, I haven’t the foggiest; you can’t be unborn before you’re born. to be unborn would require to be birthed at least once; perhaps non-birth?

    …also the commonness of death doesn’t make it any less or more strange; it just makes it more abundantly non-strange/strange . To me everything is as strange as it is mundane … often the most common and mundane things in my life are the strangest. The fact we naturally become deadened/desensitized to things that are commonplace is purely subjective…

  • vasilios, I’m not sure your response actually means anything. As for me, I don’t find death strange at all, only the failure of people to make peace with it, knowing they are 100 percent certain to die and that their loved ones are 100 percent certain to die.

    Many folks find it unacceptable to believe that this life is all there is. What value, they ask, is all the lessons learned and wisdom gained through struggle and pain if we simply cease to exist once our bodies die. Doesn’t bother me at all. Why do people need to believe our lives have meaning? Who cares. The moment I die, the past will have never happened. But I have had fun in the time I’ve been alive. :)

  • a civilian-mass audience

    “…My life has no purpose, no direction, no aim, no meaning, and yet I’m happy. I can’t figure it out. What am I doing right?”

    Charles Schulz

    BURNIANS…What are you shooting …as EMCD once asked…???

  • only the failure of people to make peace with it

    It’s not failure, Jim. it’s our human nature (though my experience, Asia, US, Europe, shows me plenty of us do make peace with it). A good sign of your own misanthropy, as you seem to find no rededeming value in much anything, and here of course, anything human. Your prerogative, and to date, one must say it has kept us quite entertained.

    In general, misanthropy is a sign, not of understanding what it’s all about, or what it could be if, but faling to keep to grasp with the humanity of/in us all, in fact: a failure to make peace with something so common you wonder what’s the problem: people.

    It’s a superb wall that disguises as stoic and realist what are actually the same fears and vulnerabilities others have, save they make better peace with them.

    PS: of death and birth as common. yet, the only events that are forever happening singly in our lives and that of others. I mean, the other way to look at it, why they provoke our stirring souls…

  • Herve, I think it appropriate to comment on someones passing

    I merely commented on you commenting on her passing on BURN, back then.

    Her death was momentous enough for you to share with us. What would be inappropriate in finding that for being so common, that death still resulted in an uncommon post from you, that is one where you opened your heart up?

    To me, in response to that post of yours, it shows there are true stirrings that death provokes in us, and that the oddity would be not in us having these stirrings, these pains, but feeling none.

  • “It’s not failure, Jim. it’s our human nature (though my experience, Asia, US, Europe, shows me plenty of us do make peace with it). A good sign of your own misanthropy,…”

    What is our “human nature?” Seems pretty brutish to me.

    Didn’t Jesus denounce the material world entirely? Doesn’t Christianity argue that people are by nature flawed, the world as we know it hopelessly damaged, and doesn’t Christianity hope for it’s destruction and dream of some kind of perfection beyond this life? Talking about misanthropy.

    Aristotle observed that the misanthrope, as an essentially solitary man, is not a man at all: he must be a beast or a god. But I can assure you I am neither. So your concern is misplaced.

  • a civilian-mass audience

    JIM and HERVE…hihihi

    oufff…BURNLAND was getting so Civilized lately…kinda tedious …hihihi

    Thanks, let’s get back to our regular programe…

  • Jim, you sound like both a nihilist and a hedonist – kudos!

    Why are you unsure if my response has meaning? To make that statement then continue on with your own opinion is pernicious at best; you imbue meaning to my statement by responding to it … but then again if you didn’t come out with some snarky statement it wouldn’t be Jim! ;)

    Death is natural. And common. And strange.

  • vasilios, I am neither. I try to see the world as it is, not as I wish it were or imagine it to be. And, no, I’m not Buddhist. :)

  • Wow gorgeous photos David. How old were you when you shot these?

  • Love redeems (all that is brutish), Jim. That’s all I can answer.

    I don’t care what Jesus/Christianity says, or Buddhism, or whatnot, either what comes out of them fits me or it don’t. Anything else of value they may offer as to “salvation”, must be experienced, and cannot be taught. Not in the bible, and not in any book.

    I am the ultimate judge of what the world is, and yes, it is always seemingly to us. ie. Subjective. It’s never about the world, Jim, what it does or does not, is or is not, but always about you, or me, or anyone.


    yes, i am working on American families which is one big circle of my work..it started with my family album, continued with Tell It Like It Is, and on and on …to be my next significant book and being shot now (that is whenever i get time and can afford to shoot on it…it is an unfunded self assigned project)….this little book (Tell It..) will be certainly in the forward or lead pages of the larger book…we are not anywhere near the design yet of Off For A Family Drive, so i am simply guessing at how this will be integrated…

    i do what i suggest everyone do..always have a personal project going….it works…keeps your mind clear and focused…gives purpose…the “benchmark” of what you do…..my current commissioned assignments (Natgeo), Rio de Janeiro and Outer Banks, will also have a personal touch….Rio is surely a continuation of my work in the Americas and Outer Banks (which i will also write) is surely a “coming home” type of story since Obx is where i live and feel most at home…so all of it is connected…i would say that a solid 80% of my work is interconnected…even Living Proof (hip hop) is totally connected to Tell It and to Div Soul in terms of historical and anthropological connects….

    since the relevant discussion of life and death and life purpose seems to be going here now i cannot help but think that photography for all of us is simply an attempt to “stop” the process..the little moments captured with our cameras do freeze the moment…capture it..for the purpose of memory, information, education, art, or entertainment….or all of those….

    sure, life is over for all of us at some point…but, in the meantime, take a picture!!!

    in the most simplistic of terms: makes you feel good and might make some others feel good too or enlighten or inform etc……

    your work, or a single photograph, might even have a “life” of its own….anything wrong with that?

    cheers, david

  • Achievement
    By Robert Louis Stevenson

    That man is a success who has lived well,
    Laughed often and loved much;
    Who has gained the respect of intelligent men and the love of children;
    Who has filled his nice and accomplished his task;
    Who leaves the world better than he found it,
    Whether by an improved poppy, a perfect poem or a rescued soul,
    Who never lacked appreciation of earth’s beauty or failed to express it;
    Who looked for he best in others and gave the best he had.

  • And Still some of your strongest work(IMLTHO). Not as polished as a lot of your later stuff, but full of power.

  • a civilian-mass audience


    we are getting there…slowly but steady…we are getting there…
    BURNIANS the achivements…

    back to my project…

    P.S MR.HARVEY…may the travel spirits …be with you…etc.etc.etc…


    the Twitter bit is an experiment….we will see how it goes…certainly easy for me to do since i tend to text message quite a bit anyway…a way to stay in touch with all of you without having to log on etc. which i will have little time to do anyway in the next couple of weeks…

    we are now set up with several others jumping in and really helping us on Burn…i will make formal announcements soonest….the most time consuming part of Burn is the process from photographer submissions to final ready to publish material…it is a back and forth email process that is quite fun and interesting, but does take time…so, this is where we now have help….Anton and i have been working steadily in the last few weeks to set up Burn so that both of us can continue with our own photography without sacrificing our efforts on Burn…it is a quite simple work flow equation…i think we have it worked out….in any case, as far as my “being here” part, we will see right now if Twitter works…i can certainly give a day by day text diary of all that happens and of all that does not happen…

    my first trip to Rio, starting wednesday, will be primarily exploratory…..just 10 days…and then i return to write and compile a complete proposal for the long term shoot….or not…maybe we will find it too difficult to do what we need to do…Rio is by all accounts very dangerous for those who move the way i usually move….anyway, we will see…

    the only problem i see for Twitter is if somebody steals my iphone…and an iphone just has to be almost as big a target as my M9..maybe more of a target…

    alas, the interesting part of all of this will be that readers will soon realize that a picture that ends up in magazine print has a whole very very long story behind it that goes way beyond anyone’s imagination…i have been trying to tell this to young photographers my whole career..this is the most interesting way to tell it….now, if they follow, they will see clearly that it ain’t just about light and nice composition..laughing…that is the easy part!!!

    cheers, david


    i never read that RLS piece before that i can recall, but that philosophy is etched deeply into the center of my brain/soul…thanks for that one…


    i realized a long time ago that my earliest work at age 14 and again at 22 would have a certain purity to it that i would never be able to achieve again…at the time of course i thought my “best” was to come…thought the early work insignificant…but, of course, that is where the innocence and purity came in….all i am doing now is creating a body of work that will make the early work, “early work”….

    cheers, david

  • “Death is natural. And common. And strange.”

    Death is like one’s relatives in this respect and consequently, like one’s relatives, to be avoided for as long as possible.

  • Death is like one’s relatives in this respect and consequently, like one’s relatives, to be avoided for as long as possible.

    absolutely correct….Death = meeting my Relatives… i experience death every single day since i visited
    the country of mustaches..

  • I didn’t sign up for Twitter to follow Ashton and Demi or any of the others but for DAH’s tweets I’ll have to finally get onboard :))

  • CATHY…

    i have no idea how this Twitter thing will work out…we will find out together…but for sure it will be the first time you and others will actually travel with me from the first moments of an assignment..the fears, the screw ups, the frustrations, the realities, hopefully the joys, of a commissioned piece…

  • David,

    I was suspicious but right now I think this is great thing this travel diary on twitter. I only regret you can’t add some pictures. The diary would be completed.

  • Twitterrific can also upload pictures, however it uses twitpic or other services.
    if your iPhone got lost, you could also text to twitter…
    I am not sure, however, if a twitter training (beyond what you already know) is what’s in your head at the moment ;-)

  • MARCIN..

    of course i can add pictures…and plan to do just that..iphone pictures that is….not my REAL pictures…well, maybe my iphone snapshots will be my REAL pictures someday !! funny…well, this Twitter thing is VERY stream of conscious….this is loose here, but twitter is even looser….

  • David,
    Yes, yes, add some pics please, even from iphone, even snaps, or great if it will be a snapshot!
    Safe travel amigo!

  • David, thank you for sharing with us via Twitter. I think following your feed is going to be very educational for Burn readers.

    As for the danger of someone nicking your M9, check out what this guy did to lessen the chances that his camera might be stolen in Rio :-)

    Safe travels!

  • Just the other day I came across the master of pickpocketing: Bob Arno. He gave some local police staff a lesson on how to spot pickpockters and how to prevent it. Honestly the guy is incredibly fast. In front of the entire police audience he took ties, glasses, watches, waist belts within seconds and the victims hadn’t noticed anything at all… amazing guy.
    Have a look here: http://bobarno.com/thiefhunters/theft-thwarter-tips/

    So far – knock on wood – I never lost anything of real value. Someone took one of my beloved shorts in a Beijing Youth Hostel while it was drying…
    Safe journey!

  • David, while it’s nice to get these little updates on twitter from you, I think it’s a really bad idea professionally. Why would you want everyone on the Internet to know what you are up to? Where you are, what you are doing? The thinking process. Even the insecurities? Kinda steals the thunder from the ultimate story, in my opinion. Disappear. Come back with a great story for NatGeo. Then we can see what you were up to.

  • Twitter dilutes everything. Makes it commonplace.

  • Again I find it fascinating to see how differently we walk (or scoot) through the world. I guess for product-oriented folks like our friend Jim, the DOING of something is less significant than its being DONE. Whereas process-oriented folks like myself really appreciate following the stream oof consciousness that might or might not result in a finished product. It’s the view from the inside that interests me, and that’s exactly what DAH is giving us through his twittering. I love it!


    You’ll get there. You always do. Taking a mind-clearing muscle-engaging walk in the dunes is more important than remembering to pack your toothpaste. Just be sure your camera gear is in order and your bills paid before you leave home. All else is secondary.

    You are on the cusp of a remarkable adventure. I am so happy for you…


  • A magic show just isn’t as interesting when you know how the tricks are done. :)

  • Jim, I don’t see David as a magician. He is a photographer and a teacher. If he were to keep his process to himself, how could he teach?


  • Xmas Day…passed..
    We visited relatives..families…
    uncle after uncle after aunt after cousins after relatives
    after relative
    after relative
    after relative
    after cousin
    after friend
    after cousin…
    the TRICKY part is that u have to accept a treat wherever u go otherwise everybody gets offended..upset..
    so every visit is another piece of cake
    another piece of kourabie
    anither piece of melomakarono
    another sweet
    another coffee
    another mythos
    another SOMETHING…
    i cant see my shoes anymore while standing….
    everybody thinks i hide a basket ball under my clothes…
    new link
    NEW LINK below…
    and remember: either AVOID relatives or EAT RESPONSIBLE…
    Click below…


  • Patricia, it’s not only the students that are watching.

  • Thanks David for “taking us with you” through your twitter posts…

    this is the first time I follow someone on this thing… it goes to show that it’s not the medium as much as it’s the user…

    I would definitely follow on twitter the recipients of the Eugene Smith or the Dorothea Lange grants too… the thought process, the complexities, the mood swings when working on a project… those are the things I’m most interested in…

    thanks for going out on a limb, in order to share the experience with us…

    Have a nice trip…

  • a civilian-mass audience

    “Make voyages! Attempt them… there’s nothing else.”

    Tennessee Williams (American playwright. 1911-1983)

  • Tech question for multimedia folks:

    I created a MM piece using FotoMagico, then converted it to Quicktime movie following Anton’s instructions for Burn submissions. The quality of the photos goes from excellent on FotoMagico to poor on Quicktime. Any ideas or suggestions?


  • Twitter’s greatest contribution is feeding a over inflated ego …….. if you need a crux create a project of your own …………….hanging onto the shirt tales of another only ends up in grief

  • Patricia,
    in FotoMagico, you have several options to export – HD is one of them. It is (imho) also a QuickTime Format, with higher quality however… would that still fit into the specifications?

  • Patricia, most likely something to do with compression, though I don’t know photo magico and it could conceivably have something to do with resolution. Unlikely though. The compression thing is complicated and requires trial and error for novice to intermediate users. If you’re not already, try using the h.264 standard and be sure your output screen size is as big as it needs to be. If that results in good quality and a gazillion MB file, at least you’ve identified the problem.

    Regarding the twitter thing, I’ve always felt disdain for the phenomena but am very interested to see if David can pull off his vision for it. That would be great, if so, though Jim may be right that his legacy will be dooooooomed, doooooomed, I tells ya, because of it. Now I’ll go click on Panos’s link.

  • Thanks, Thomas, but the images are still poor quality. Is there a better MM software I should be using?


  • I was a little disappointed Panos. Where are all the moustaches? I only saw one or two and they weren’t all that. Nice shots from under the table though. Too much tsiporo?

  • Sorry for the double post but as soon as I posted this under burnians, the party moved over here!


    Just discovered that I am being featured on Alex and Rebecca Webb’s blog today along with 14 other photographers who have taken workshops with them. Very happy to be included as part of this group!


    My website
    http://www.cathyscholl.com (under construction)
    was omitted but perhaps they will add it.

  • Michael..
    hmmm..yes now that you are mentioned…
    they are way less mustaches than i thought..
    who knows why…
    maybe they read my complaints…
    same thing with the trash and the garbage in athens…
    when i posted that link ( garbage ) next thing u know
    they cleaned it up and picked up all trash….
    maybe i should keep complaining…
    or at least more often…
    it works in grecolandia..
    big hug

  • a civilian-mass audience


    did you say little …hihihi…
    this was major…PANOS got to focus …you are a BURNIAN…
    we need some real mustaches …Make Voyages …and easy with the tsipouro…
    cause I and DAVIDB …liver not good …:)))


    Congratulations !!! and Bravo to you and to other photophilosophers…
    THAT’S why I love you …ALL !!!

    not for you, PANOS…hihihi…what a pisser…:)))

  • Patricia,

    in which resolution did you put the pictures to FotoMagico? If you resize the pictures to the target format before putting the pictures to FotoMagico, the difference in quality should not be too bad…

  • Jim, good point on twitter (Imants too).

    David, aren’t you getting a bit too caught up in all this i-something thingo? On the other end, it does have entertainment value, and in many ways, might even be about not taking oneself too seriously, bordering on self-irony rather than, or as much as erring on the egotistical. Thin line…


    hmmm…surely the twitter bit may or may not be a good idea..as i said when i started, it could be temporary…well, frankly i thought that so many people are asking me all the time what it is like to prepare mentally and physically for an assignment, that some might enjoy the diary like feel of really going through it…there is the fantasy and there is the reality of going right through an assignment….i sure wish i could read something like that from the notes of Gene Smith on Country Doctor or whatever if it existed….Jim , it is not like learning the secrets of a magic trick…the point is there are no tricks….the point is that insecurities are for real and knowing that can be very helpful to some…and as time goes on hopefully the nature of “the zone” could be understood by many more for whom the whole point of Burn is as an educational tool…hurt professionally?? by whom?? to do what? i only took what i teach in class and brought it online in the first place….i know that if i like a great film, if i can get a hold of the director’s day books it certainly does not take away from the power of the film…or an artists notes…or all the lyrics that got written before the song was done…steals the thunder? don’t think so…might make it even more “magic” after all….or, simply skip it and wait for the book….

    Herve, you amaze me…WTF..caught up in all this “i something thingo”???…if i were caught up in all this “i something thingo” why in hell would i publish a magazine with only the work of others?? are you not missing the whole point of Burn? if i were into to “i something thingo” why in hell would i have invited YOU to the Magnum Paris party?? why would i have invited YOU to sit in on my class in SF? if i were interested in the “i something thingo” why would i do a blog setting up a platform of speech and thought and pictures for YOU and a whole bunch of others??? why wouldn’t i just do my own website, push my own career and books and just publish my own pictures?? after a comment like yours i really do feel just like doing my “i something thingo” and forget the hell out of the Herve something thingo..

  • CATHY,

    Great photo on the workshop website.
    I hope your own website will be up and running soon. Doesn’t do much good to spread the address around when it is still ‘under sonstruction.’ I’m looking forward to sweeing more work of the quality of the workshop photo and the cover photo on you website opening page. Good luck with it.

  • Guess it takes 2 to thingo, David! :-))))

  • Thanks, Thomas. I think you may have put your finger on my problem. Tomorrow will be a resizing day.

    Congratulations, Cathy!


  • HERVE…

    laughing…i gotta love you Herve…i assume we can continue our rap into 2010!! i always enjoy your company, so even if i get a bit piqued with you from time to time, it is all in the spirit and context of good discussion…i do think you go from highly reasoned thinking to rapid fire non-thinking, but we all do the same occasionally…oh yes, go search your own name on Burn…go re-read all the comments you have made about what you were doing in Thailand or wherever…wouldn’t it have been easier to just tweet?? laughing….and hope we meet again soonest….

    cheers, david

  • CATHY…

    as you know, i think this a nice picture but i had no idea you shot it for Alex and Rebecca’s class…in any case, congratulations…..you are in good company….

    cheers, david


    woe is me…..i will no doubt end up in Ward 712 if i keep hanging out here….or, more likely, i will either be not able to get in, or if i do, not able to get out…..ahhhh, the peace of knowing our place….skype if you have a chance…

  • David;

    “the point is that insecurities are for real and knowing that can be very helpful to some”

    Those insecurities are always my biggest hurdle to overcome when I attempt to produce decent work. I seem to spend an inordinate amount of time discovering methods of overcoming them.

    I’ve been looking over the project work I’ve shot this year and it drives me crazy… One day I like the work, the next I hate it all; a day or two later back on par again; ad infinitum.

    The nights you go out and get nothing, and next night; bang, bang, bang and you know you’ve got some good stuff. Then throw in a few “Man, I’ve invested a lot of time in this, I hope it works” moments!

    For example; talked my way out of a potentially dodgy (an angry, drunk) situation the other night (Xmas Eve); and to add insult to (near!) injury got absolutely no photos at all that night. It’s at times like that you desperately remind yourself a week earlier you had a cracker of a night and everything worked perfectly!

    What a roller coaster!!! Beats the hell out of my old supermarket job though! :-)

  • David;

    You gotta watch that Imants character… I see he was trying to volunteer us Southern Hemisphere-ites to help out with baby making. It’s a slippery slope you travel when you hang out with such scurrilous rogues.. :-)

  • ROSS…

    one of my weaknesses (and only one of them) is that i always hung out with scurrilous rogues…

  • Yes; but remeber; I’ve lived a very sheltered life… :-)

  • All cool, David! I think I just played a string on your violin that was tuned an octave too high. That happens…


    PS: So, how could I twit from thailand on BURN? How about Cathy too?

  • DAH,

    No, I didn’t shoot the photo posted on their blog for Alex and Rebecca’s class.
    In fact, as you may recall the weekend in LA I spent with them a couple of years ago did not involve shooting at all. Sadly.

    Rebecca sent out an email calling for student updates. What we’ve been doing along with an image.
    I selected that Rodeo image to send…which I also submitted to burn many months ago by the way.
    I don’t know how many submissions she received but they included me in their blog post which I thought was VERY nice. She took the text from my email to her.


    Thanks very much!


    Much thanks to both of you!

  • Sidney/Patricia,

    Hmmm…that first message never posted.

    Well, you can never thank someone too much :))

  • HERVE…

    hey that is why we are here ….from time to time we all stroke the wrong string…one thing i know about you though is that you always know what it means in the long run…”it” being the discussion itself…and why wouldn’t we challenge or question each other?? it would be boring or unhealthy if we did not….as far as i am concerned you can push all the wrong buttons you want…and i am sure you do not mind me pushing some as well…but, no matter what we come out the other side just fine….this whole online communication process is experimental in nature..i have no idea where it will all go….but, that is the point…whatever we find out will be a surprise…and i like surprises…by the way, the MANTRA of twitter is to only write what you are doing at the moment…those are the INSTRUCTIONS!!! and you surely know what a rule follower i am i am….

    cheers, david

  • CATHY…

    i thought maybe you took another class with Alex after the L.A. weekend seminar….

    my recollection of that image was that you sent me an email with three choices and i chose that one and dropped two other “similars”….later you submitted it to Burn…isn’t that the sequence? i do love the moment of the image…i only felt the choice of a super wide lens made me just too too aware of LENS which for me took a bit away from the moment…anyway, still a very nice photo..

    cheers, david

  • DAH,

    Yes, it went something like that.

    As far as shooting super wide…???
    I am planning, hoping, assuming I will do quite a bit of super wide (or at least wide to very wide) in India so I’d love to know a bit more about why the lens selection took away from the moment for you.

    Because it doesn’t look like what one would see “normally” thru ones eyes? You don’t usually seem to be concerned about “normal” so perhaps it’s something else? I don’t think there was much if any distortion…that is a concern when shooting wide. Please do share your thoughts about super wide… Thanks!

  • CATHY,

    Go wide, girl! I LIKE the wide lens look. My ‘normal’ way of seeing the world is usually somewhere around the 28mm lens view (in 35 terms). So your picture didn’t look ‘wide’ to me at all. I’m looking forward to seeing what you do with a wide angle lens in India.

    (Sorry for all the typos in my previous post).

  • Thanks SIDNEY. In case I haven’t said that enough tonight :)

    Just doing the dishes and thinking about that Pow Wow shot of yours we were discussing the other day.
    You asked if we (I) would be interested in hearing more about what goes on behind the scenes in some of your images. Yes OF COURSE!!!

    I don’t know exactly what you have in mind…if you are referring to telling more about the story of why you were there, who was doing what at that moment or if you will discuss technical info as well…not necessarily which lens you used but why you wanted to show more, or less, closer or further away, etc. I’m sure we’d all be interested in whatever you want to share.

    I was thinking of this as a result of your “super wide” comment above. I’ve already told you that one of the things I love about your Pow Wow shot is how much story you fit into the frame. You were far enough back that it looked wide but not “crammed in.” There was space between the various people getting ready. Each was perfectly framed. Something about the feel of that I just love!

  • Cathy S

    Thanks for the four continents link. Love your photo, along with the other great stuff there. Good luck in India.

  • Imants…

    If what you wrote earlier wasn’t just words, I don’t see what you’re doing here… watching what other people shoot and reading what other people think about and around photography… instead of focusing solely on your own personal projects…

  • Whatare you rabbiting on about?

  • Imants
    December 28, 2009 at 5:18 pm

    Twitter’s greatest contribution is feeding a over inflated ego …….. if you need a crux create a project of your own …………….hanging onto the shirt tales of another only ends up in grief

  • this ain’t twitter here

  • It’s still too early to say, but I don’t think David’s posts on twitter are going to be like the rest of those posts… you (along with Jim) jumped the gun to dismiss this whole thing before we even got to the part where it became boring or banal or whatever…

  • I referred to twitter per se not what is here in particular…….. there are projects in all walks of life not just photography. You like to tweet around and follow an individual’s breakfast and life so be it

  • Panos, alittle late I’m afraid.

    Thanks for the link to the extended family christmas, great fun, just as it is……



  • I’ve never followed anyone on twitter, but I’ll give the benefit of the doubt to David…
    Go to go now… working on a project as I’m writing this… have a good one…

  • ………….. chuckle chuckle


    the conversation between the two of you(Imants, Thodoris) just now seemed exactly like a twitter conversation…laughing…anyway , let’s just see what happens..i am totally ambivalent about twitter…do not know if i like it or not…my ONLY interest in it came because many many people tell me that if i drop out of comments here that it takes away from Burn…i do not know if this is true or not, but surely i do have a “personal relationship” with the commentators here…since i am leaving now on assignment, i cannot be here as much or perhaps not at all…the twitter suggestion came as an alternate to what i am doing right now…some way of staying touch with all of you without having to go back to my hotel room and logging on….that i will not be able to do …so standing on a street corner in Rio i can do some of what i do here …let’s just see how it works….it does seems crazy to reject an idea before it even starts…if i do twitter i will always have in the back of my mind how it would read over a month…in other words i would try to create a continuity…not just a bunch of “i just drank my orange juice”…how about this….let’s see how it goes for the next two weeks of reality assignment work…if we all do not like it, then we drop it..twitter is not something i thought of , but neither was blogging in the first place either…it is extra thinking and work for me, so if everyone hates it, then it goes….make sense?

    cheers, david

  • a civilian-mass audience

    Don’t worry MR.HARVEY,
    we are open 24/7…

    “It is important to do what you don’t know how to do. It is important to see your skills as keeping you from learning what is deepest and most mysterious. If you know how to focus, unfocus. If your tendency is to make sense out of chaos, start chaos.”
    Carlos Casteneda(American author, 1925-1998)

    everything makes sense !!!

  • CATHY…

    i guess “normal” is not a word that you think of in context of me or my thinking….but, i think you might be confusing normal from an aesthetic standpoint vs. normal from a tech standpoint…i like a variety of photo styles…for example, i like Tom Chambers and you do not…he is not “normal” so you cannot imagine how i could like Tom and yet complain of a wide lens…is that right?

    my own photography is i hope “lensless”….i do not think you are aware of any particular lens choice when viewing my work…i do use normal lenses…90% 35 or 50 and some rare 28 for a full frame 35mm camera or the 80 on my medium format….however, i do not care what other people do if it “works”…that is simply my personal choice…

    when i looked at your picture of the girl and dog in the car, the first thing i thought was “damn, why did she use a super wide?” ..there is extreme distortion in that picture (i disagree with Sidney on this point)….at least for me…FIRST thing i see is a distorted car door/window, THEN i see the girl and the dog as secondary to the distorted window…that picture would have been so so nice just shot with a 35….why the wide for that shot?? the guys in the background would have been better slightly out of focus anyway…why they need to be sharp?? the power of that picture is the girl and the dog, but you need to tell us that by being right on the girl and the dog….yes yes with the other elements, but with the other elements somewhat minimal…

    just a tweak…fine photography is about JUST A TWEAK….

    again, that is my personal taste…i really do not like depth of field in most photos….that is why i was so happy to have full frame digi…i can throw the background out…that is one of the main advantages of your 5D…get the background out…and yet you are using a super wide …i do not see for what purpose…i felt the same about your pow wow rainbow….woulda been great with just a bit of selective focus…it is too sharp front to back with no place for the eye to rest…everything is in it, but what are we supposed to concentrate on? everything? you have all the “information” , but with nothing for us to think about…

    you say you like my pow wow picture…that was shot with full frame 28, which is as wide as i go…..but i was shooting wide open and only focused on the man in the foreground…the background is as out of focus as a 28mm lens can be at that distance …the elements do go front to back but they are not sharp…i did not want them to be sharp, but flow softly out of focus and yet still be important elements..layered but not too too sharp…

    one of the things i first hated about digital photography was that everything was too sharp front to back because of the small chip making all of us use wide lenses cropped for the field of view of say a 35 but using a 28 to get there…a cropped 28 is still a 28 or a cropped 20 is still a 20…following this?…the full frame digi allows us to now have a “film look” because we can work wide open and soften the background…you have a full frame camera…why not try it for the advantages it has??

    to summarize: both of your pictures are still nice and certainly not bad…the rainbow and the girl in the car..in my opinion, both coulda shoulda woulda been “great” by simply a combo of selective focus and selective composition..get in…concentrate on the background, but it does not have to be razor sharp…try it, you might like it….

    cheers, david

  • DAVID,

    To inject a little balance vis-a-vis the vocal Twitter-phobes, although I personally never had any interest in it as a means of communication before (I don’t own a cell phone, either), in the context of this blog and your assignment in Rio, it makes perfect sense to me as a way for you to both keep your hand in when on the road, and also do just what you are intending to do in terms of showing the day-to-day and occasionally hour-to-hour travails and roller-coaster ride of an ongoing assignment work in a ‘heavy scene’ location as an educational exercise. Give it a serious go… don’t let a few pooh-poohers stand in the way.


    pooh-poohers have never stood in my way…i would never have gotten out the door with my photography (or Burn) at all had i listened to pooh-poohers…they are EVERYWHERE all the time on EVERYTHING for my whole life…yet, i cannot make a strong case for twitter yet….again, i am ambivalent but willing to give it a try….thanks for thinking….

    cheers, david

  • Ultrawides have been the “thing” for a while now. The thinking is to “put yourself in the middle of the action” while still showing the surroundings. So you get right up in someone’s face with the UW, which of course distorts everything. I don’t like the look at all, but a lot of PJ’s seem to shoot everything that way.

  • JIM…

    well, i think being in the middle of it is the place to be…..and the ultra wide is the “easy way” to do it…but, if you can get everything “in” without going ultra, then i think it simply looks so so much better..on this we agree Jim…i do not like the look at all….

    cheers, david

  • yes..Jim…i tried that fisheye look too…
    Ultra boring…
    made me Ultra Lazy….
    Ultra “cheap” feeling…
    cheap thrill…
    And if u combine it with an Ultra Exotic location ( aka India )..
    u get Ultra annoying results…

    Cathy .(big hug)..
    but sorry..your photo looks like a typical california WEDDING PICTURE..
    Ultra Wides are best for annoying cheap weddings from LA girls with
    if u still planning to visit poor Ultra India ,
    plz leave that Ultra Plastic booby Wide lens at home…
    it brings me the shits..
    or should i say Ultra plastic diarrhea…
    Now about the Webbs?
    I checked that link…
    This is how they make a living..
    tOOkind of them to say thank you to their students..
    nothing more than that..

  • DAH

    Please DO reprint Tell It Like It Is. Magnificent.

    Hoping to talk / text /skype today a little later?

  • ERICA…

    call this afternoon please….

  • and to be fair..
    yes there was one good photo on the Alex Webb blog…
    from German Romero Martinez/mexico 2004…
    the rest…hmmm mediocrity…

  • lens choice is as much about storytelling as it is about the right horse for the right course right?
    You may need to ‘go wide’ or ‘go long’ to get a particular shot from a particular place(pj/wildlife/etc), but its also an aesthetic choice a lot of the time. A storytelling choice.
    There is also the fact that not all lenses are created equal. The canon 24 is IMO rather dull and lifeless, the Leitz 24’s are, however, spectacular.
    I say use whatever tells the story the way you want the story to be read.


  • John…i agree 100%..
    its just that Cathy’s photo..
    screams canon brochure…screams f4.5…
    it does not scream “Cathy”…
    it screams…”look at my low noise at 3200 iso”..
    buy me…
    the camera (5D) is superb.. dont get me wrong..
    it shoots by itself…and that is the problem…
    but an expensive camera does not
    “buy” a style…unfortunately…
    Cathy’s photo does scream “wedding”…

  • …and honestly…since when if u r featured on a Webb blog…
    means great?
    cant see this connection…like..at all…
    5D is great…get a zeiss…fuck around…
    enough with that cheap zoom “point of view”…

  • Doesn’t anyone go gonzo in their own backyard anymore? I’m so bored with the intellectual and the staid fine art; the perfect composition and the soulless commentary; and no, no energy. Being bored is such a waste, so pissed at myself. Found the right rabbit hole that’s been here all along, jumping, may need a rope back out someday. Total success or total failure but no safe photos. Submerging for fresh air. Where is the Lizard King?

  • David,

    I really enjoyed reading your post on lens use, point of focus and composition. Digital photography has really changed things up, and it is important to go back to the equipment basics from time to time and realize why we use them-both in terms of simplicity and creative control.

    We we first met in Jackson, I owned and carried only two lenses, 28mm/50mm, and to be perfectly honest the simplicity of that setup left my mind to work on the images themselves, and proved even more useful on the road – a minimalist approach so to speak.


    I just dropped in on your website, nice images, it is too bad we did not meet up at the Gathering of Nations last spring- I was covering that event for the Southern Ute Drum and would have loved talking photography with you- Perhaps in April!

    Cheers, Jeremy

  • Tom Hyde. Cut the rope. Only way out is the other end :)
    Doing the same. Found an oasis of fanaticism, chaos and potential anarchy just ten minutes train ride from my house. I seem to fit right in.

  • the LIZARD KING..
    fucking around in his blue MUSTANG…

  • DAH

    will try you around 2 / 2:30 if that is okay

    Tom H

    I would have liked to have gone more mad in my backyard for dark light, but I saw reasons not too…thinking I will save the madness for the next neighborhood over.

  • I would have liked to have gone more mad in my backyard for dark light, but I saw reasons not too…thinking..

    EMCD..ahhhh..too much thinking…( u saw no reasons ?)
    jee…i suggest you go riding the NY subway…
    coz riding a “mustang”….hmmmm it takes lots of “madness”…
    i agree with you…laughing…save it…( for later )
    big hug…

  • Not too much thinking at all. I refer you to The sleep of reason produces monsters. Even madness has its reasons.

  • PANOS,

    I guess you haven’t been reading David’s comment(s) here that he would like to feature more of his workshop students work on burn? How is that any different than the Webbs doing ONE post on their blog that featured past students? Sorry Panos. If you’re going to make stupid judgements about Alex and Rebecca you’ll have to say the same for David and burn. I totally disagree with you (no surprise there.)

    Also you can bash my photos all you like. I’d prefer that you keep your feelings to yourself where I’m concerned. I don’t bother you with what I think of your crap, I mean photos. I figure if I have nothing nice to say (I don’t) then it’s not worth saying.

  • I don’t bother you with what I think of your crap, I mean photos.

    Cathy just woke up….
    what up C?…coffee didnt work?
    big hug

  • Ah. A cat fight! What not to love. :)

  • The sleep of reason produces monsters

    Emcd…if you think you are Goya..
    then i’m the bat ( symbol of ignorance )…
    one love

  • ..and Cathy…:)
    it wasnt just my opinion…
    i just agreed and second “other” opinions..
    ( and u know this..right?)
    biggest hug

  • no, I do not think I am a Goya, rather that the sleep of reason can produce monsters.

  • Panos’s comment on the 5D is spot on. I got one awhile back, for reasons too tedious to mention, mostly for beer money assignments, but only started attacking it seriously recently (Xmas day photos were testing dof and difficult light). Yes, it does everything a bit too well. The Canon brochure look is all too easy. I just came off a year shooting almost exclusively with a funky black and white camera that did almost nothing well. The 5D is very frustrating. I think that unless you want the Canon brochure look, the imperfect cameras are probably easier. You have to love their idiosyncrasies. The 5D has no idiosyncrasies. Or, hopefully I haven’t identified them yet. I’m trying. The thing that’s bugging me now is that since the damned thing gives one so much control, I ought to be able to use that control to get whatever look I want. Guess right now I don’t have that look envisioned so am concentrating on getting the control.

    David’s comments on lenses and depth of field are pertinent to my recent studies. Went to a couple cemeteries in the past few days and played with dof. Neat rows of gray things with text on them spaced several feet apart out to infinity. Focus a 35 mm lens at 12 feet and you can read the epitaphs clearly from 6 feet to the horizon (Canon’s sharpness and contrast are scary). Of course, as David says, you probably don’t want to do that, but its an interesting exercise. More interesting are the more open apertures and range of dof and quality of the blur in different lighting situations. I’m trying to be more systematic than is my wont. The damned camera makes it necessary.

  • …and C…whats wrong with u adopting and introducing your wedding style of photojournalism..
    Actually its the only style that brings money in…right?
    whats wrong with getting a fat paycheck? i think i need to follow…;)

  • Michael…laughing…
    its not just the 5D..its mainly the boring zooms and the extreme f5.6 laziness…
    i have a good friend that uses a 5D with a leica mount adapter and a leitz lens..
    sickening…or a zeiss for canon…also sickening…
    but the Cathy 5D use…is program with the zoom…on F5.6…and then ( u have seen the results )..
    boom…Wedding photography at its best,,..

  • gear talk: 5D — with a 28 1.8 or a 50 1.4 it is a pretty nice combo — many many many talented photographers use that camera and make more than beer money with it — you can shoot any camera to get boring photos, hasselblad or leica or whatever — a leica lens on a canon doesn’t say anything other than, well, i bought a sweet lens for a canon — BFD — i daresay panos and michael that if you used exclusively canon or nikon or whatever your photos wouldn’t be that much different than what you are making with whatever you use… c’mon…

  • Hey, don’t bash the 5D. There are plenty of plugins that you can buy to make your 5D images look like crap if your goal is imperfect photos.

    It’s just a camera. Put in on manual, set the aperture and shutter speed manually. See, just like a Leica.

  • DAVID,

    Thanks for sharing your thoughts.I very much appreciate it. This is a subject I’ve never heard you discuss that is of great interest to me.

    I agree with all you say about selective focus. I have only owned full frame digital cameras because selective focus is so important to me. If anything, I overuse it. Although not in the two shots you mention above. I like those two because they have some depth of field for a change!

    Okay, packing, packing. :)

  • dq…Jim…
    i agree…a camera is just a camera…( and a 5D is a great one…no doubt )
    Laziness…is my objection….and mostly boring lenses…

  • Panos,

    For me it’s 2.8/manual :))
    and I don’t drink coffee…so that should explain a few things.

    I must agree with you (shock) that more and more I am hearing about “pros” who say P means PRO!

    Sorry you don’t like my photo(s). I happen to love them and don’t give a damn if anyone else does.
    Probably the biggest lesson I’ve learned here :))

    Just don’t use me as your poster girl for those who abuse the 5D. It ain’t me babe!

  • Cathy…
    since the flight regulations changed…
    save yourself some space..leave that booby lens at home..
    or take the most open aperture with u…just bring your f1.4…
    I feel happy about the new regulations..i have to admit..
    that will “force” most lazy photogs to leave most of their useless gear back home..
    cathy stop complaining…its a blessing..
    leave that heavy tripod and all your boring WIDE & tele zooms home..
    get one lens only..A PRIME..
    ..try a new approach…
    you’re not a paparazzi are u?????
    big hug and fly safe
    ( you’re my favorite Burn sport..)

  • CATHY…

    my feeling on publishing student work is this: if i see a good picture from an emerging photographer, then i will publish it…from either a submission here or from a student….

    all i was saying was that i think it silly to AVOID students just because they are students…i also do not think they should be published just BECAUSE they are students either….so far, 99% of my students have never been published on Burn..

    i do not know the exact percentage , but it seems to me that at least 85% of the work published here is from photogs i do not know nor ever heard of…like the two right now for example….now Panos for example if i published him now (and i will publish his Greek photomythology), then folks will say “oh but you KNOW him, you are friends”…yes, i know him…yes, we are friends….from here on Burn! and i know i am going to catch it every time i publish the man, but i swear many could take a lesson from him..he shoots more crap than anyone, is the worst editor i have ever seen, YET his NUGGETS of real photography beat most….fresh, innocent, loose…

    ok now the other issue: when do i “know” somebody? after they buy me a beer? after they write to me on Burn? after they take a workshop?

    i mean if the only way to get purely published is to never have made any contact with me whatsoever so as to avoid the contamination of somehow “knowing” me therefore being disqualified from publication is simply crazy…and of course there is you…i have met you…we have socialized….i have written to you many times on Road Trips and Burn…we are online “friends”, yet i have never published you….point is, it does not matter…i am going to publish work that is i think provocative one way or another…i would be happy for you if you were published here on Burn, but i will not do it just to make you happy…nor Panos, nor Patricia (who newest work i have not published), nor Imants, nor Eric , nor Erica nor anyone i might like or be friends with IF i simply do not like the picture…it is not personal in either direction….

    oh yes, i just read what Panos wrote to you above…you KNOW that would be my advice too…for heavens sake why would you need a tripod in India? or a wide lens? or a long lens? i mean India is ENOUGH already….you would do well to have light weight shoes, do 50 situps every morning, drink fresh orange juice, get 8 hrs of sleep and simply be NIMBLE…you only need to be aware…..think of how great you will feel with just a 35mm and running shoes??? that is enough…guaranteed better work from you IF you go light

    cheers, david

  • a civilian-mass audience

    Am I late …Can I sing now???

  • Cathy..
    im sorry but i can PROVE DAH right…im a living example..
    i have never had the dough to buy a workshop ( although i would love to…)..
    yet im published here…i never even bought David a beer either…yet im published here..
    David mentored me ( and the rest of Burnians ) for free…yet im published here..
    why?????????? oh i know why..coz my photos are crap….!!!
    I’m sorry Cathy…All respect to Alex Webb but…….( u know exactly what im going to say…so i’ll keep my mouth shut..ok?)

  • Actually Jim, it’s not just a camera, it’s also a computer. And a clock! Even tells the time.

    Sorry if my bitching that the 5D is too good at everything offended anyone, or my quip about beer money. That’s me sparring with my demons much more than attacking the camera. Art directors love its superficial qualities and it does a great job of providing photos that they want to pay for. And I’m seeing a few photographers who have apparently fiddled with its computer to get a “look” in-camera. Looks excremental to me, but again, art directors are paying for it. Personally, I’ll shoot however they want. 5D is great for that. As for any higher aspirations I may harbor, it’s no doubt more about the vision than the camera, but why not have a camera (and lens) that gives one that much control?

  • a civilian-mass audience


    Who’s on first ???


  • DAVID,

    I think both of us should be getting ready to leave rather than spending time here but I do enjoy reading your comments.

    As far as publishing student work. Nice to hear what you have to say but I didn’t bring it up. I was only responding to Panos’ comment:

    “Now about the Webbs?
    I checked that link…
    This is how they make a living..
    tOOkind of them to say thank you to their students..
    nothing more than that..

    p.s. I don’t use a tripod or long zoom so no worries there!


    ok..couple nights ago i was talking with a very very very smart and beautiful lady…
    she told me that i remind her of …
    Till Eulenspiegel

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Till_Eulenspiegel ( Eulen=Owl/spiegel=mirror)

    since that Till became my hero…
    :… In the legend, he is presented as a trickster or fool who played practical jokes on his contemporaries, exposing vices at every turn, greed and folly, hypocrisy and foolishness. “The fulcrum of his wit in a large number of the tales is his literal interpretation of figurative language.”[2] Although craftsmen are featured as the main victims of his pranks, neither the nobility nor the pope are exempt from being fooled by him…”

    The prankster Till Eulenspiegel, depicted with owl and mirror (Straßburg edition of 1515)..
    Ultimately, Eulenspiegel’s pranks are not primarily about the exposure of human weaknesses and malice but the implicit breaking up and sublation of a given status of consciousness by means of negation itself (animus) as that which Eulenspiegel embodies. The common element of the Eulenspiegel stories consists by and large in turning the mental horizon prevailing in them upside down and unseating it by a higher one. The German term “Landfahrer” (≈ “vagrant”) defines Eulenspiegel’s social position best and most comprehensively. In his highly pronounced mobility are expressed the animus-inspired Late Middle Ages. Thus Till Eulenspiegel implicitly personifies the constitution of consciousness of this times. With Eulenspiegel’s death occurs the entry of the embodied trickster-animus into the medium of things spiritual, the form of existence of pure spirituality so that the soul has seen through itself by way of its own spirituality and knows itself as living spiritual life: Eulenspiegel is still alive.

    This is the photography and spirit i want to bring into life..


  • Panos…

    Who knew…

    All this time I thought you were simply an asshole :))
    Hugs. Laughing.

  • a civilian-mass audience

    Photomythologists, Photophilosophers,…PhotoBURNIANS

    What not to LOVE !!!

    Can I sing now???

  • “the conversation between the two of you(Imants, Thodoris) just now seemed exactly like a twitter conversation…laughing” ……yep because it was like twitter it died in the arse, it seems that neither of us found it interesting

  • Eulenspiegel is still alive

    Like all archetypes, but do not associate too much with the character, Panos, eventually he gets caught and beheaded! ;-)

  • Gosh, it’s easy to get sideswiped around here. You can be sitting around minding your own business when out of nowhere your work is commented on in a less than positive way. Ah well, comes with the territory I guess.

    Happy New Year to all! Life is about dancing to your own tune even if no one else can hear it ;=)


  • a civilian-mass audience


    I can hear it…na,na,naaa,dumm,dum,naann,naa,dum,dum…

    Well,I hope you feel much better…
    May the New Year find you dancing …cheek to cheek with ED…!!!

    What not to love…Goodnight from crazy Grecoland…oime !!!

  • Cathy, that was a great WS you got from David, just before your trip too, about the use of wide angle, DOF, and the comments on your pictures. It doesn’t happen that often on BURN, David going into WS mode. Whatever he wrote, a few negatives, it beats reading for the umpteenth time someone say they “like” your picture(s).

  • Yeah, and I had nothing to do with THIS debacle. ;)

  • PANOS, vis-a-vis Snoop and Akon and their pithy song

  • this is where dah’s twitter-feed would be enhanced by an iPhone photo

    (“I tell everybody to travel light.The equip spread around my living room now does not look like anyone setting up for minimalism. All nighter” )


    Sideswiped, yes. Great word for it!

    “Comes with the territory” are my husband’s words exactly.

    Happy New Year!


    Thanks for taking time to look and comment.
    Did we already discuss that we were both at the Gathering?
    Seems like I made that connection with you…maybe just in my mind? Hmmmm…Or was it Santa Fe that we talked about? Sorry, I’m overwhelmed with packing at the moment. :))

    I do hope to be there in 2010. The location will be different this year. Let’s plan to meet!

  • CATHY…

    what are you qualifying? i was simply chatting with you, not passing judgment, not suggesting you said anything wrong, and i of course knew you did not bring the subject up…my comments were about the subject , not about you….simply general comments my dear….you felt sideswiped?? geez…i took all that time to write you about your work, your lens choices, and maybe thinking about traveling a bit lighter (which i tell almost all of my students) and you felt sideswiped?? hmmmmmmm


    where was your work commented on in less than a positive way? you mean when i said i had not published your most recent work? is that less than positive? or were you referring to something else? lost in translation?

  • DQ..

    yes…but, the iphone does not work well in low light…otherwise i would have taken a pic…

  • ’twas patricia, dah, who said she felt sideswiped – not sure when, where – but you are to be forgiven for reading too quickly or not closely enough, as that that pile of (unseen by us in low light) gear on your living room floor and the million other details swimming in your brain are no-doubt more urgent than blog-chat at this point.

    i know that, for me, packing for a two day domestic shoot is fraught with decisions of all kinds; packing for a 10-dayer out-of-the-country must be all consuming.


  • DAVID,

    I’m not 100% sure what Patricia meant in her use of the word sideswiped but my re-use of the word was definitely NOT directed at you. Don’t worry! Keep packing. :)) I’m in the same boat (I mean plane.)

    By sideswiped I was referring to how Panos got involved in our nice conversation and turned something I was happy about (the blog mention) into an opportunity to trash me along with whatever else he could fit in…5D owners, wide lens users and on and on. THAT was the sideswiping I was talking about. OKAY??? NO PROBLEM on my end.

  • DAH – DOH!!!! – seems i’m the one not reading carefully! apologies…

  • Ah, the obstacles to communicating on the web. Some day a world war is going to be started by scrambled messages on an online forum.

  • This blog sure is responding slowly to posts, at least on my end.

  • In India, Brazil, Vietnam……. cows love doing this to camera bags ….. http://www.iamparanoid.net/ …….. we humans are pretty adept as well(in our verbal ways) and love doing it unless one is paranoid …………..


    After a week of being homebound while trying to heal from my injuries I’m probably supersensitive, but I read your comment about not having published my recent work as a bit of a put-down. The fact is that I haven’t submitted that essay to Burn because it was clear during your LOOK3 workshop that it is not to your taste…and that’s fine. I was just surprised to see you using it as an example of how you do not publish work you don’t like even if it’s created by your friends or students.

    As I say, maybe I’m being overly sensitive.



    i would be the very first person in the world to apologize to you for saying something wrong….so i do apologize for somehow making you feel bad….as a major champion of your work, i would think by now you would imagine that i would make a straight call in any case…both about good work and about work that i do not feel is quite there…i was never suggesting that your work had been rejected by me at Burn, i was simply making the point that no matter how much i might like one thing that just because of friendship alone i would not publish…but it does not mean because of friendship i would not publish because we are friends either…

    i was using you as an example of a friend , but not demeaning a body of work that i have in fact not seen more than one or two pictures from to the best of my recollection….i have no opinion of your mirror work because i have not seen it in its totality..period.

    so the judgment of that work is in the future…however, you may be a bit too thin skinned on this one…and you should be prepared in the future, particularly because of your success with Falling Into Place, that you will in fact be judged by higher standards than before FIP….there is no “arrival” in photography….

    at some point one is judged on their life work…but while you are in the process of doing your life work, you are only as good as your last essay….

    hugs, respect, david

  • CATHY..

    of course all is good..it was never bad!! have a great time in India and take a picture i can publish with pride for both of us…i gotta do the same for you……however, eat your heart out, i am packed and in great spirits…fired….and carrying three bags total: backpack, shoulder bag, and med sized roller duffel…i am leaving behind a trail of tears, and wreckage everywhere, but i ride off into the sunrise imagining a better day….

    cheers, hugs, david

  • DAH-
    A navy blazer in Rio? Sounds very official!

    Your Twitter feed will be intriguing..

    Good luck and safe travels,



    i must now follow your fine work in Brazil….like a music jam….i gotta strum that guitar!!!

    i always carry a navy blazer no matter where i am going…usually do not need it..however, i might find myself at a society event, the mayor’s office, a wedding , a funeral …now i do not go too far…my dress up gear is nice cowboy boots, jeans and the navy blazer..after all, i am still a photographer and the only real advantage i can find to even being a photographer is that you can dress as you want no matter where you may be….oh yea, one other advantage to being a photographer…you always have a good excuse to start up a chat with the most intriguing woman in the room…

    on that note, i am outta here……

    stay tuned….

    cheers, david

  • Let me put in a word for the navy blazer… I am totally with DAH on this one.
    So many photographers dress like slobs… and by and large, people expect photographers to be less sartorially correct than everybody else, so at times you can get away with it, I guess. You’d think, however, that people who are so attuned to visual communication would have a little more awareness and sensitivity about the effect that their own appearance has on other people. America has gotten very, very casual about what people wear and how they appear, but that is still not the case in many other countries. There are times and places when you’d really be better off blending in at a level that’s at least minimally socially acceptable… and no article of men’s clothing is more useful for that than the navy blue blazer. As DAH says, it makes blue jeans and cowboy boots into a passable outfit for semi-formal occasions (as long as your shirt is clean). A navy blue blazer is on eof the best gear investments you’ll ever make.

  • I’m sure the other half here will appreciate wearing a blazer at formal evens!!!

  • That’s semi-formal events…

  • a civilian-mass audience



    frank Sinatra…!!!

    I LOVE blazers,jeans,no jeans, suits, bikinis,sandals …I LOVE LIFE !!!

  • John Pitsakis (John left a comment under Jennifer’s overpass essay), had a look at your flickR site, enjoyed many shots, like this for example:



    “you always have a good excuse to start up a chat with the most intriguing woman in the room…”
    Now I see you are prepared to the assignment. Focus on what important in Rio, and in right mood to do it best!
    And what you will wear at not formal events?


  • John..:)
    the only formal events i know are WEDDINGS..

    and speaking of weddings…
    Cathy sorry u feel bad or trashed or sw-ed..or anything..
    i didnt trash u..
    calling u a Brochure photographer or the best WEDDING photographer i know
    its a praise…aint it:)
    you’re the one that called me a crappy asshole after all…
    right…( and i liked it )..
    why lose your temper?
    big hug..( and dont forget the Baby-lens while packing…or a 1000mm tele..
    u dont wanna go too close to King Cobra in India..right?)
    biggest squeeze & hug

  • John “I’m sure the other half here will appreciate wearing a blazer at formal evens!!!”

    My other half’s favourite line when we were about to go out was something like “You’re not wearing those bloody sandals again are you?”

    My smooth reply “But they’re comfy” didn’t really cut the mustard I’m afraid… :-)

  • Ross it ain’t the sandals it’s the long socks in the sandals

  • eventually he gets caught and beheaded! ;-)

    not only that but also getting kicked out of the city..often..
    (what WS stands for btw?;)

  • Imants; No; I’m not a teacher!!! :-)

    I’ll let you in on a little secret on how to get a bit of personal space… First off you need a pair of track pants (always fashion’s cutting edge!), Pull them up till they are about 3 inches below your neck and tuck your t-shirt in. You then tuck your trackies into your socks and wear your sandals!

    I can guarantee that the family will be about 50 yards further down the beach pretending they don’t know you! Of course I would never make myself look so stupid in public just to wind the family up….. :-)

  • Did I read what you wrote correctly ……”Of course I would never make myself look so stupid again in public just to wind the family up….. :-)”

  • oh gosh, i’m never going to catch up here!
    (but i’ll try :)


    Thanks for your explanation. To be honest, your apology is unneccessary. Yes, my skin is a bit thin right now, ask Ed. He’s been a prince during this week from hell. I am such a wuss when it comes to pain ;=(

    Anyway, am sending you good wishes for a successful shoot in Rio. It’s going to be amazing! Travel safely and twitter when you can. It’ll be fun to follow your adventures and challenges. May there be more of the former and less of the latter…


  • Excellent! I was hoping we would digress into a discussion of navy blazers! — essential photographic equipment of the highest order. In addition to David’s ability to attend weddings, funerals, and interviews with a mayor, they also help you have cocktails in five-star hotels. So, yes, you are staying a dingy 2 or 3 star place, or a rattrap guest house, but it’s nice be able to stroll into an upscale hotel or club for a couple hours of luxury after shooting in the sweaty tropics.

    And in all seriousness, most of the world’s cultures value a certain level of formality, so not looking like a bum with a camera can be very helpful. It’s better to exude professionalism and formality than sloth.

  • what WS stands for btw?;)


  • BTW, does David’s Leica have a blazer too, in case….? :-))))

  • oh i thought it was Wiped Sideways..

  • In the world that I grew up in, ‘WS’ meant only one thing: William Shakespeare.

  • And however tongue-in-cheek he may have been, I agree completely with what Preston Merchant said.

  • Just finished reading the posts from start to finish. I am little behind. Sorry David about your friend. No mater what your philosophical or spiritual leanings he lives on in his photos and paintings and in your heart. I thought Twitter was nonsense for the most part as well, but I am willing to give it a try to follow David’s adventure. Agree about the prime 28 or 50 mm lens on full frame digi, that’s all I use. I have been a student of David’s in his workshops and they have been life changing experiences. I strive and hope to be published on Burn not because I attended a workshop but because David thought my photos were of sufficient caliber. Nuff said.

  • Tucked-in, hiked-up track pants are nothing without a fanny pack.

  • My use of Twitter is not so much about sending out information, but gathering it. I have subscribed to several informational feeds. If I see something that is interesting, and would like to reference later, I post it on a personal blog, making sure to keyword as thoroughly as possible. Tat way, I continually have a growing library of interesting sites, tutorials and general information at my finger tips, wherever I go.

    When actively shooting a project, I will also post a photo of the day with twitter keywords. Often those get republished by others that either follow me, or found the post via keyword search.

  • Brian; “Tucked-in, hiked-up track pants are nothing without a fanny pack” Ahh; so I could have embarrassed them even more? Yet another lost opportunity…

    Imants; “look so stupid again in public”

    If you strive to look stupid you must commit to it fully; no half measures… Otherwise the missus will never again say “Don’t do that; people know us!” While she and the kids pretend they don’t know you (while laughing their arses off). Well I always presumed they were pretending…. :-)

  • The problem I find with things like twitter, or any feed that informs me of the world’s happenings, I quikly run out of time to look at it. albeit, the information may be fascinating – but other parts of life require more attention, and rather than trying to catch up, I have to pick up where ever it is now…

    So – that being said, I’m picking up on Burn today – while scanning some prints from this past semester…

    David, I know you’re super busy and may not read this – I hope your trip goes really well and the M9 works well for the story! let us know how it rates compared to the M8 please.

    Sorry to hear about your friend and collaborator, He’ll be remembered through his work and your fans and friends too of course.

    I sent you an email a few days ago about a letter, I understand you’re probably more that too busy to respond let alone write it… No worries! Look forward to seeing the outcome of this project!

    Travel safe! and Happy New Year

  • “so I could have embarrassed them even more?”


    There’s always room for improvement.

  • Brian; That’s what my school reports usually said! So now we are back to 1970’s teachers wearing walk shorts, long socks, sandals and the obligatory beard! :-)

    Off to the New Year’s Eve races now (it’s the 31st here) to take the camera for a walk.


  • Ross -“So now we are back to 1970’s teachers wearing walk shorts, long socks, sandals and the obligatory beard! :-)” Sounds like a few of my current professors!

  • Tucked-in, hiked-up track pants are nothing without a fanny pack.

    You almost forgot the high peaked ball cap from Larrys’ equipement rentals.

  • A friend of mine used to have a visor that had a really long brim. He called it his “Super Visor”

  • Just in case I dont get back here tomorrow, I’d like to wish everyone a Happy passing an arbitrary point in the space-time continuum Day. And you should always pack a tie to go with your navy blue blazer. Ties look good, too.

  • To Herve,

    thanks for your comments and link. Very much appreciated. I’m not always following the Dialogues in burn. they are quite frantic. Besides, I don’t usually speak much. I’ve followed your link too from time to time, your street shots are very interesting. And I respect your comments and viewpoint in general.

    See you around,

  • CIVI

    “I’m coming back everyday…for your everyday…almost everyday…
    it’s sometimes the everyday…
    that it makes everyday not like every every day…
    falling in love with the everyday…is not happening everyday…”

    :)))) and who’s not a writer, hmm? I love this!



    Just cuz i think you need it..


    I’m gonna be at the Robert Frank show at the Met tomorrow..if i don’t get back online, want to wish everyone a VERY HAPPY NEW YEAR..


    all the best in Rio..can’t even imagine New Year’s Eve there..excess to the excess. NJoy!

    best to all


  • a civilian-mass audience

    HAPPY NEW YEAR AUSSIES AND ASIANS …and then the rest of the Universe…

    I will be back…I just talked with the Santa Claus …he/she promised to me a good
    NY ‘s present…i will let you know the soonest…

    KATIEEEEEE… I love you everyday…
    VIVA Maradona …VIVA football …soccer whatever…I am still working…

    I will be back with more tedious posts…WHAT not to Celebrate…
    MR.HARVEY …oime …mama said you forgot your swimsuit …

    Be HAPPY BURNIANS …shoot …you never know what the Universe will bring …

    see me later…

  • Kathleen, if you’re in midtown, 41 E. 57th street, you might consider stopping by the Howard Greenburg gallery and seeing Bruce Davidson’s “East 100th Street” photos. I went there today to see it before it closed. I think Saturday is the last day.

    John Gladdy, if you’re reading, I now see, or maybe remember, what you mean about the superiority of prints. It’s been a long time since I’ve seen anything remotely approaching the quality of Davidson’s prints. If ever.

  • Thanks, dear Burnians, for your get well wishes via emails, phone messages and comments here. Turned a corner today and even spent much of the day outside the confines of my home. Yippee!!! I’ll be swimming again next week when the holiday break is done. All is well…


  • Best wishes for all!! Happy New Year!!!

  • 11:19am in grecolandia…
    shaving my mustache now..
    i want the new year to find me “clean”…
    big hug..

  • 4:20 in NY..
    people there deliver..
    take advantage..:)

  • Michael Webster. GOOD!! :)
    Now go to the MET and check out the Frank Prints. Then try and find some big glorious Cibachromes (maybe Serrano if you can find him). Original Natchwey prints, anything thats superbly printed and hung on a wall. Then tell me you prefer an internet slideshow. Once you have seen the real thing, everything else should just be seen as a preview. I suspect strongly that a whole bunch of the work so far shown on burn will sing a whole lot clearer when viewed in the flesh.


  • HAPPY NEW ONE everybody..
    no idea what is happening on here for a while.. patricia – you okay?
    out in the land of snow with sporadic connection..

  • ” I suspect strongly that a whole bunch of the work so far shown on burn will sing a whole lot clearer when viewed in the flesh.”

    It did, John. It most certainly did sing. Not that we saw prints of ALL the work published thus far on Burn during that first Burn gallery exhibit in DAH’s lift last October, but we did see enough to hear a song none of us will ever forget. And it certainly didn’t hurt that most of the prints were made by master printer Mike Courvoisier. As we all know, there are prints and then there are PRINTS.

    I’m doing fine now, dear David B. Thanks for asking. Please give Tor Capa a kiss from his Grandma Techno. BTW you’ve been missed!

    Happy 2010 to ALL…


  • To be fair John, I didn’t say, or at least didn’t mean, internet slideshow. I was talking about properly prepared images for a large hi-res display. Now that you’ve got me thinking about it, I’ll seek out more color prints for comparison, but I’m not so sure I’ll change my opinion. I think I kind of came by it looking at Burtynsky prints at his Brooklyn Museum show, which I thought were recognized as way up there quality-wise. And I recently went to the Alex and Rebecca Webb show and thought the same thing. But I’ve got nothing, if not an open mind so I’ll keep at it. And true, I can’t imagine saying the same thing about black and white with those Davidson prints fresh in my mind.

    Should mention too, that prints fade while digital images stay the same. Perhaps that had something to do with my comments. I worked briefly out at Reader’s Digest and spent significant time looking at many classic black and white prints. They had a lot of depression era Walker Evans and Dorthea Langes hanging around (Lila Acheson’s collection, you know). But I didn’t get the same sense of wonder I did from the Davidson prints. Anyway, I’m tuned in now and will take your advice on seeking out better.

    And another thing, which I know I’m going to have trouble verbalizing coherently (probably since I don’t have a coherent opinion), but there’s something about the associated costs that bother me. Those East 100th street prints are over $5000 a pop and the book is $350. That denies a lot of people the benefit of contemplating those images. I, for example, won’t be lining my walls with them anytime soon. Perhaps that exclusion of the grubby masses is part of what gives them profit potential, but I’m not so sure. And from the other side, I’m uncomfortable being, in one sense, little more than a courtier for the super rich. There must be a better way. Not saying the existing system should cease to exist, but it would be nice to see it expand and beautifully produced slideshows for large high quality displays may be a good option.

    Along those lines, I watched Steven Sebring’s film about Patti Smith last night. Sebring is a still photographer and it shows distinctly in the movie. Although it doesn’t contain a lot of still photography, in many other ways, particularly the way the narrative is handled, it’s my idea of what a good multimedia piece should shoot for. Regarding the gear (5D) issue, it was interesting to see Smith, who’s not a bad photographer, lugging around a big honkin Polaroid land camera for at least ten years. And regarding the not-limiting-great-photography-to-the-rich issue, note that it was, and will be, seen by many millions. Anyway, I think a lot of people here would find it interesting for the photography alone. http://www.pbs.org/pov/pattismith/

  • Blink and its 2011 http://www.artouko.com/im.htm and the mouse rolled over

  • Happy New Year everyone!! I have enjoyed 2009 with all of you, and looking forward to a new and even better year ahead.

  • It’s 3.20am here; I’ve just got back from shooting in town and the New Year is already 3 hours old! For the first time in 2 weeks I’ve finally been able to produce some decent pics, thank goodness because it was getting frustrating.

    I’d like to wish all burnians a happy New Year. I hope the year brings you all you ask for.

    Take care.

  • michael webster –

    sorry, laughing a bit “I watched Steven Sebring’s film about Patti Smith last night…it’s my idea of what a good multimedia piece should shoot for.”

    Well YES! but it took him 12 years to shoot. That amazing vibe-look-feel is quite similar to what I want for moving film for the dark light of this nothing, which is why it hasn’t happened (yet?) Extensive time and resources, etc. on top of amazing creative vision, make his film the quality piece that it is. I salute Steven Sebring and yes I agree there-in is a great model of something to reach for, but I do think in general “good multimedia” is going to have to take on a different face, or we won’t see anything new for a very long time.

  • http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/americas/8436388.stm

    as posted from thomas bregulla..
    see twitter above…
    fingers crossed

  • Burnians, it has been a great year and a great big pleasure to be here on burn!
    I am sending my best wishes to all of you for a wonderful 2010!

    Heavy snowfall in my part of the world, but Rio sounds worse… As Panos said – keep the fingers crossed!
    It is still 2009 and I am off to the transition party into 2010.
    Love you all!

  • a civilian-mass audience


  • a civilian-mass audience

    THE PHOTO PHILOSOPHERS…2010 work in progress …

    PATRICIA LAY- DORSEY on Falling into place
    KATHLEEN FONSECA on Landshapes and MY Book
    LASSAL on the Meaning
    ANNE HENNING on Landscapes of the Season
    KATIA ROBERTS on Real Change
    CRISTINA FARAMO on in the Mood for Love
    LAURA EL-TANTAWY on the veil
    LISA LOGHEN on her tearsheets
    JENNY LUNM WALKER on keep Burning
    KATHARINA on Vignettes
    KERRY PAYNE on Cuba , New York and Paris calling
    ERICA MACDONALD on the dark light of this nothing
    SOFIA QUINTAS on Black Mole Skine
    GINA MARTIN on Burning
    CATHY SCHOLL on Back to India
    CARRIE ROSEMAN on dream By Day
    ANDREA EJESTVANG on the Greenland
    ANNA BOYAZIS on Aids orphans
    GRACIE KIM on Love
    VICKY SLATER on Pinholes
    WENDY on Cuba with Love
    ANDREAC cycling India from East to West
    ANDREY BARDOU on 15 minutes
    VALERY RIZZO on Brooklyn
    MY GRACIE on the BURN book of poems

    DAVID ALAN HARVEY on …on…on…on…never ending
    ANTON on “Odo”
    JOHN VINK on Land Issues
    N.ECONOMOPOULOS on Anatolia
    MARTIN PARR on Wal-Mart
    ALEX & REBECCA WEBB on my Dakota
    AKAKY on the Passing Parade
    MIKE COURVOISIER on Broadway
    MICHAEL LOYD YOUNG on the …U.S gulf Coast
    JAMES ESTRIN on Lens
    TRENT NELSON on Click
    BRYAN FORMHAL on la pura Vida
    BOB BLACK on his new Project
    BRIAN FRANK on Express yourself
    PANOS SKOULIDAS on the Photomythology
    BODO on the Cloud Hunter
    HAIK on four new BURNING projects,
    RAFAL on La Familia Abrazada
    ASHER on Burning
    PRESTON MERCHANT on the Indian World
    TOM HYDE on BURNING with
    MARCIN on the Time without light
    THOMAS BREGULLA on Everyday
    PAUL O’MARA on the 2.8 Project
    IMANTS on booketrouko
    JASON HOUGE on the The iPhone Photojournalist.
    MICHAEL WEBSTER on Abandoned
    VIVEK on Times Square
    MIKE HALMINSKI on his note cards
    LANCE ROSENFIELD on his Cantina Series
    CHARLIE MAHONEY on a troubled Paradise
    PETE MAROVICH on the 37th Frame
    HERVE on the Carnival
    MIKE R on his Memories of him
    REIMAR OTT on Aid Convoy to Russia
    FRANCESCO LASTRUCCI on the deseo de estrella
    JIM POWERS on J.P Photography
    ROSS NOLLY on The kids are alright
    GAETANO BELVERDE on the Skin Tales
    DAVID BOWEN on Manduwala
    THODORIS TZALAVRAS on Nicosia in Dark and White
    JENN ACKERMAN on Trapped
    PAUL RUSSELL on Beside the Sea
    MARK W on Burning
    PETER.B.SCHAFER on Wonderland
    VICTOR BEN TZVI on Israeli Landscape
    JAMES W.DELANO on a Thirsting World
    MIMI MOLLICA on Terra Nostra
    NEVEN GRUJIC on La Familia
    JON-MARC SEIMON on Grand Manan
    PETER GRANT on the Man behind the camera
    ERIC ESPINOSA on Burning in Europe
    SAM HARRIS on Postcards from Home
    JOHN CLADDY on None of the above
    ANDREW SULLIVAN on the Harlem Jazz
    SIDNEY ATKINS on the six records of a Floating Life
    DAVID MCGOWAN on the Humanflies
    MATTHEW NEWTON on the Ditch goes global
    DOMINIK DUNSCH on same country-different stories
    JAMES CHANCE on our Story -multimedia
    MARTIN BRINK on the daily Round
    PAUL TREACY on the Chalkers
    MIKE BERUDE on the Slowdrift
    FROSTFROG on Running Dog
    DAVID BACHER on the Reindeer people
    IAN AITKEN on Travel Folio
    MICHAEL KIRTCHER on the Healing Waters
    JONI KARANKA on Mindfist
    GORDON LAFLEUR on Joy Kills Sorrow
    MICHAL DANIEL on Bring In ‘Da Noise, Bring In ‘Da Funk
    JUSTIN SMITH on keep Britain
    PATRICIOM. onTrackBikes
    JEREMY WADE SHOCKLEY on South Africa
    PARTHA PAL on the Tribal Haat
    RAMON MAS on Bizkaian Landscapes
    JOHN LANGMORE on a portrait of East Austin
    FRAN M.HACK on Burning
    DQ on Burning
    GLENN CAMPBELL on Aboriginal Issues
    DAVIN ELLICSON on Nordic High
    MARK TOMALTY on Hockey Moments
    ANDREW B on random images
    JARED IORIO on Strange.rs
    ABELE GUARENGA on the traces of Samuele
    PETRI UUTELA on Passers-by
    JUKKA ONNELA on Smoke Collective
    SPACE COWBOY on the Space travelers

    Emerging Philosophers:
    THE CIRCUS KIDS …stay tuned

    THANK YOU MR.HARVEY for opening the doors and the windows…
    THANK YOU LASSAL and HAIK for the insight help…
    Thank YOU Universe.
    Thank you my Family …who still LOVES me …

    I feel there is an exciting year ahead!

    P.S… the above …is dedicated to ANDREW.W, to MASAAKI, to all the MAMAS and PAPAS who are not here, To all the family and friends who are Here and There …to Stavroula,to Nirvana…we know …you know…ENJOY our work in progress…!!!
    What not to LOVE !!! VIVA !!!

  • a civilian-mass audience


    I will be back NEXT YEAR

  • jee…
    that looks like the Burn Yellow Pages…
    Asylum Burn

  • CIVI
    manduwala.. halcyon days.. brutal and beautiful.

    so it`s an interesting one tonight.. celebrating the beginning of a new beginning.. digesting all too much food and ‘water of life’.. hiccup..
    and yet
    the family is incomplete right now as some have gone to the hospital to visit tor capas great aunt who was taken in christmas day and is close to passing..
    there is a life well lived..
    a fan of boxing..
    who has fought hard and won every fresh day of loving.
    lived through a poor norway, a nazi occupation
    who, after near enough a century of living, shared life’s water with us on christmas eve and reveled in top cats company.

    big respect to all here and raising a literal glass to top cats great aunt..
    a great woman who touched all.

  • THE PHOTO PHILOSOPHERS…2010 work in progress continued…


    Somehow I suspect we might have burned ourselves to a crisp had we not had Civi around to pour LOVE in large doses over our over-the-top flamings. Let’s hear it for our resident PHILOSOPHER/MUSE!!!

    warm hugs

  • May Tor Capa’s great aunt pass gently into a land where the water never dries up and babies’ giggles offer unending delight. Her story continues through all who know and love her…


  • Patricia…i second that..
    totally agree…
    Civi builds and I destroy..
    ahhh what not to love????

  • A happy New Year to all at Burn. Thank you for your photographs and writings.


  • Happy New Year all,

    here’s a question, BTW:

    If Twitter is sent thru a phone, how come messages are not spoken/heard, rather than typed/read?

  • Herve, It’s sent via his phone however it can also be sent through Facebook or many internet sources.. He’s using an app on his iPhone to send it. It’s a brief text message to update his doings.

  • HAPPY NEW YEAR to all-

    No doubt that 2010 will be another fabulous year for BURN!!!! CIVI, you are amazing….



  • Thanks Jason, again: Why not audio messages?

    btw, I wish David to be as well-surrounded by the time 2010 rings in to the tune of a Samba, tonight in RIO:

  • Herve, you can also do audio, you need an additional service however…
    Happy New Year to you all!


  • a civilian-mass audience

    MY APOLOGIES TO ALL THE BURNIANS …that I forgot to mention…
    please don’t hesitate to ADD and CORRECT …the above list…

    I am extremely Happy cause I “met” you alllll…and cause the Greek Santa Claus is coming …
    Finally …someone will visit Civilian’s house…

    VIVA,VIVA,VIVA …hicks

  • My usual new year exhortation to self and others goes:

    Consume less: Media
    Capital (of all types)

    Create more: Media
    Capital (of all types)

    …but that’s mostly the burnian way already, I realise…

    Taking a flask of mulled wine to watch the fireworks over the Amstel.

    Peace x

  • Would anyone here be able to give me some advice offline vrizzo@valeryrizzo.com on how to pitch a story idea, in my case a travel article, to a magazine. How does one go about pitching it and if I only have the photographs being a photographer do I also have to write the story in order to pitch it? Can I submit it to more than one magazine at the same time? Thanks I thought this might be something someone here has done before.

    Best, Valery

  • David. beautiful story. I met him with Med at the James.
    tried to return your call. can’t get you. call back about your friend. xoxo

  • a civilian-mass audience


    BURNIANS…VALERY needs assistance on aisle FACE…!!!

    Check your e-mail …someone will respond in the next 24h…
    Wish you Luck!!!


  • Happy BLUE moon
    dear Burnians……

  • Happy New Year, Blazing Ones!

    still checking in every day – just oh-so-quietly.
    it’s been a rough year.
    excessively tough.
    but i’m Alive
    and i’m learning so much.
    and loving so much.
    and what the hell else matters?

    for you, by Neil gaiman:

    “I hope you will have a wonderful year, that you’ll dream dangerously and outrageously,
    that you’ll make something that didn’t exist before you made it,
    that you will be loved and that you will be liked,
    and that you will have people to love and to like in return.
    And, most importantly (because I think there should be more kindness
    and wisdom in the world right now), that you will, when you need to be,
    be wise, and that you will always be kind.”

    with love,



  • from NPR…
    if you could describe 2009 in ONE word,
    what would it be?

  • a civilian-mass audience


  • a civilian-mass audience


  • holly-days…

  • ότι η δέσμη ματιά ενός dodgy λίγο

  • a civilian-mass audience

    if it was a silent…let it go…

  • a civilian-mass audience

    IMANTS…you …my Greek boy…oime

  • a civilian-mass audience

    IMANTS…you …my Greek boy…oime

    PANOS …focus…one world

    VIVA 2010 …2…0…1…0 or 0…1….0…2 or …1…0…2…0


  • a civilian-mass audience

    IMANTS…you …my Greek boy…oime

    PANOS …focus…one word

    VIVA 2010 …2…0…1…0 or 0…1….0…2 or …1…0…2…0


  • a civilian-mass audience

    PANOS …focus…one word

    VIVA 2010 …2…0…1…0 or 0…1….0…2 or …1…0…2…0


  • Imants…
    grcolandia is waiting for u..
    u can speak but u can also right..

  • a civilian-mass audience

    do I see triple…??? I better cut on the ouzo..hicks

  • ALL..

    well, so much for twitter and so much for off camera light …in my first hours on Copacabana beach New Year’s Eve, i managed to lose my iPhone to the sea and my SB800 strobe to a thief….

    i never give tech reports, but my Nikon D700 took a total underwater (salt water) submersion, and came up working!!…at least for 10 frames or so, then went out…then came back!!! my iphone took the same water hit and is gone gone….

    all of this happened of course by trying to take a simple picture…ladies in white were coming to the sea with flowers as an offering to Iemanja goddess of the water….in order to take this picture of course any (insane)photographer must have his/her back to the waves and be backing into the sea…well, you get the idea…i was hit by an unseen wave and knocked completely under…twice actually….Susan Welchman, Illustrations Editor for Natgeo, was holding my SB800 for me at a 90degree angle and safe and dry on the beach…while she was holding the strobe high and creating a nice balanced light at dusk, she became oh so vulnerable and sure enough the SB800 strobe was grabbed out of her hand by a running thief…

    but, not before we managed to get pictures out of all this!!

    i honestly cannot believe the camera is still working…even just checked again now…i mean salt water submersion…several witnesses saw it go all the way under…it was dripping wet when i managed to stand up and shoot my last frames and before the strobe was stolen…thank goodness the thief waited until the light was no longer so good anyway..

    day two Rio coming up…

    cheers, david

  • I do hope someone got the picture of you getting the picture. :)

  • And that is the great photographer’s life, crazy and unpredictable. Your trip going to be interesting.

  • Oh wow.
    Talk about a roller coaster read!

    Firstly, David, I’m very sorry to hear about your friend, Masaaki.
    I’m glad you had the time you did together and I like that the things he taught you you’re now passing on to others. You were both very lucky to have each other.
    I hope you do republish ‘Tell it like it is’, besides anything else it kind of completes the circle.

    Also I’m really enjoying the Twitter feed.
    I don’t know what it’s like for photographers on assignment or what it’s like for others working on personal projects and to me the process is just as important as the finished piece.
    Knowing what people go through to achieve their vision makes it more satisfying and poignant to me, you see more the dedication and humanity of the artist.

    Really interesting post about use of lenses (please more of these, they’re like food). I think we all need to try different methods to find out what works for us, and we’re moving on all the time.

    David, I’m sorry about your unexpected dip :) and the theft of your flash :( glad the nikon held up, sad about the i-phone though, I’ve heard water is it’s main enemy.

    Thanks to you all for sharing your thoughts, it always makes for an interesting read when I manage to catch up (you’re all so fast!) :)

    Happy 2010 everyone, it’s a whole new decade, I like that.

  • David, I know the feeling — you may have been knocked down not once but twice, lost your iphone to the sea and your strobe to a thief, but dammit to hell YOU GOT THE SHOT(S)!!! Keep going; you’re on a roll. This adventure is going to result in some amazing work. I just feel it in my bones. As best you can, though, stay safe. And try to get some sleep. You’re going to need it! Tell Susan hi from Patricia. I remember her kind words when I showed her my blurb book in C’ville.

    Happy 2010! It’s off to an interesting start…


  • DAH:
    Ahaa, so you didn’t take the m9’s to the beach?

  • ok katharina one more for u then

  • yeahhhhhhhh…DAH is having fun…………….
    good times…………..
    nikon rocks…

  • John..:)
    clumsy photogs should always leave the m9 at home..

  • Panos…. 小心挨打! :):):)

  • hmmm…likes it..2010 sounds so promising already….:)

  • …thats what im talking about…:)
    ive been a bad boy…i need discipline…;)

  • ahhh…San Francisco was so much fun..

  • one more classic…
    for all my skype friends out there…
    plz lets skype…
    lets do….

  • welcome everybody to our new years party….our early morning show…
    dance with us…

  • the REAL thing..click here:

  • Looking at the current essay, I think photographers are talking pretty much to each other with their photos these days. Does anyone else really even notice photography these days, much less whether it is good or bad? Who cares about artistically framed stiffs and cops? After a barrage of cell phone photos of a suicide bombing in Pakistan or Afghanistan, what’s the point of a carefully shot essay of cops and dead guys on the street?

  • Who cares about artistically framed stiffs and cops? After a barrage of cell phone photos of a suicide bombing in Pakistan or Afghanistan, what’s the point of a carefully shot essay of cops and dead guys on the street?

    hmmm…jm afraid that thats a good point..

  • DAH

    never a dull moment, eh? sounds as if the camera is recovered, but in case you want to do something further for it or for the iphone if it is still in your possession, standard advice I believe is to pack it in a ziploc back with silicone packets. I had a camera in the ocean incident, and the other successful advice/action was to keep it near the back of a refrigerator (outside, on top) when it wasn’t in use for awhile, to help it dry out, combined warmth and dehumidifier element or something.

  • the iPhone has water detectors. if they get wet, the phone shuts down.


  • David, sad times when a photographer needs a body (and camera) guard to keep his gear from being stolen out of his/her hand. And you still enjoy this crap?

  • Good point Jim. If it was me I’d be on the first plane home, maybe that’s why I don’t do this sort of work.

    My heart goes out to David over his sea water immersion. Two years ago I wrote off my complete Hasselblad outfit (two bodies, three lenses, finders and filters etc.) when a freak wave hit me from behind. Moral of the story when working by the sea is NEVER turn your back to the waves. My gear was underwater for seconds but was instantly ruined. The damage is done days and weeks after the event when the corrosion sets in. I still have the old gear as a reminder of my stupidity and still the salt crystals grow inside the lenses. Thankfully I was insured but I lost a treasured body that I’d had from my student days.

    I’d be interested to see how long David’s D700 continues to work. My Nikon D700 is quite remarkable for it’s ability to work in all types of wet weather. I’ve never dropped it in the sea though…

  • iphone dropped in the ocean?
    just hope that a shark didnt find it..
    new studies ( from a greek university ) have proved that the iphone
    can actually feel pain..yes , u heard that well..
    it is so advanced that the iphone can sense pain especially if beaten by a shark…
    If u find it follow emcd’s advice..if this wont work plz bury it immediately face down..
    Only face down so u can avoid the new phenomenon called iPhone ghost..that not only haunts
    the owner but also the owners relatives by tweeting obscenities in the middle of the night..
    sorry but you are in trouble..

  • sooooo a local guy stole the strobe..????
    hmm thats what happens if u dont employ local assistants…
    their union and rules are tough in Rio….

  • standard advice I believe is to pack it in a ziploc back with silicone packets

    ha ha…thats exactly what a mother with 3 babies would say…:)))))))))))

  • DAH:

    Sorry to hear your loss. Very impressed with nikon water seals anyway. You wouldnt count that with the M9 of course, but since your photo session was mainly with flash, I guess the nikon is much better for flash photography. But keep in mind that the nikon is much more attractive to thiefs than the M9…

    Well, keep safe and happy new year!


  • a civilian-mass audience

    Do not worry MR.HARVEY,

    I told your story to the local community…Help the(insane)photographers !!!
    We have manage to gather …hmmm…a decent amount…so you can buy a new iphone…

    Do you accept Western Union…???


    P.S BURNIANS…please focus …I need good energy…2010…new era,aura…
    it’s up to you !!!

  • Frank Michael Hack


    Just saw the photos on your site. I was pleasantly surprised, but I hate to say if someone else published those photos on Burn you would be poh-poohing them, no?. Do you have any particular contemporary photographers, emerging or otherwise that you respect. Or is photography really dead for you, pining for the good ol’ days. At first glance I didn’t like the cops but after a second viewing a lot of thought went into the photos. It could have gone either way. Pretty straight but that goes to say based on his publishing record in mainstream media. What is a photographer attempting to emerge to do? If I took all your commentary to heart WTF would be the point in being a photographer today. Maybe that is precisely your point.

  • DAH – Sorry to hear about the phone – that is their downside – not impermeable… I lost one to a river once. Got it out of my pocket in time to see the image on the screen fizzle away… so sad.
    as for the camera, WOW! keep an eye on it though, as that water dries out it may start to corrode the fine traces on the boards inside. You may still need a new one after that. especially the card slot – if water got in there, but it has a nice seal so maybe you’re ok!

    Jim – it’s all part of the game when you’re at his level – as for the theft, I don’t think the thief would have dared had David been holding the flash… But it’s part of the game – go into places where the laws arent regulated as well or just plain don’t exist! Thievery, is a way to put food on the table or buy drugs, or medicine… lets hope it was for a good cause, maybe David will run into the transaction and witness the outcome!

    CIVI – HAPPY NEW YEAR! It’s already another day in some places, but only noon here.

    Happy New Year to all!

  • Too bad about the iPhone, keep your fingers crossed with the D700…and c’est la vie avec le SB800, but yes, it comes with the territory… I used to do a lot of kayaking and canoeing, and as I’m sure Michael Kircher can tell you, if you go near the water, you should start with the assumption that YOU WILL GET WET, and plan accordingly. If you launch a kayak or canoe on a river, lake, or the sea, you must assume that sooner or later YOU WILL CAPSIZE. The question is not if, but when… and how will you deal with it? It’s too late to start planning and thinking once it happens. In August of ’09 I was in a canoe that capsized in deep, cold, fast water on the Nooksack River here in NW Washington… naturally, I was aware of capsize possibilities, and had put my wallet with cash, id, driver’s license credit cards, etc., double-wrapped in ziplock bags, in a deep pocket with a tight velcro flap closure… that swift current sucked that wallet out of that pocket in less than half a second and it was gone. Back in Japan in film days I dropped an SLR into a river and it quit working… luckily it was very clean fresh water, not salt, and after a visit to the repair shop, a cleaning and a good drying out, it worked for several more years. As for the theft of the flash, this too is a fairly predictable thing in many crowded situations (not so much in East or SE Asia these days, maybe, but in the US, Latin America, etc.)… and could have happened in New York as well as Rio. Back in the 60s when I ‘witnessed’ a lot of demonstrations in the NY, Boston, and Chicago areas, I knew of people who shadowed pj photographers, waiting until the action got hot, and then in the confusion they moved in with a razor to cut the camera strap and run off with a press photographer’s spare Nikon. I don’t know if times are worse now or not…


    Thanks for surfacing! Nice to hear from you. Hope things are going well. Best of luck with your projects in the New Year!

  • Frank, most of the photographers I like are of Harvey’s age or older. So, not too many contemporary photographers.

    I think photographers today are “emerging” to shoot photos for themselves and other photographers. I think we are “post photography,” and photography has become transparent to most people. Images “exist,” and folks don’t really see them as good or bad, just “there.” Interesting, perhaps, for a second or two, then forgotten. We will all, I’m afraid, soon become hobbyists, amusing ourselves with our cameras.

    In a sense, that’s fine, too. Just sad that it’s become so hard to make a living with a camera. Sure was fun. I don’t think folks trying do this thing in the future are going to have much fun, though.

  • There is a photographer / journalist http://www.kevinsitesreports.com/ Kevin Sites – He reported on ten big wars happening all at the same time. and while he was shooting with one camera, a kid came up and cut the strap to his other camera at one point and made off with it. He was hired by Yahoo to go do this… It happens, you have to be prepared.

  • DAVID,

    Well, what a start for your assignment!!!!…. now, you are going to HAVE TO share with us this picture of the ladies in white coming to the sea…. if you have nailed the shot, who knows, maybe was worth it :):):)…. While the ladies are offering flowers to the Iemanja goddess of WATER who would have thought that a reknown photographer would offer up his camera :):):)… Now tell us the truth, did you stay calm and positive or did you let the curses out in a big way!!!!! It does confirm though that Brazil seems to be a place that requires vigilence…. I recall seeing the NG video of your shoot in Salvador during Carnival and if I recall, you also got your Leica stolen at the time….

    well stay safe and keep us posted!!!!



  • I do not go into the sea. Seas are large holes filled with water that just lay there not doing much of anything and I think it ill behooves me to encourage this sort of behavior.

  • DAH:

    Can two photographers submit a joint project to appear on Burn and can such a project be submitted to The Emerging Photographer Grant 2010?




  • ALL
    Happy New Year to all!!!
    Wish you all the best for 2010 … and further.
    I will be off for a couple of days or so but looking forward to join in again.

    Meaning, yes … It is all there … I just have to do it. And my new year resolution was a timetable for it! :)

    just read your comment.
    pffffffff …. sorry to hear about the dive. Hope you can get your equipment replaced quickly. Camera will probably stop working in a couple of days or so, when corrosion takes over. But ok, nobody hurt – that is the most important. I am glad you got the Yemanjá offering pictures though. That has always been such a huge part of the New Year’s celebration in Rio!!! … :)))


  • Wow Civilian!

    what a list of Burnians and their projects. I don’t how you did that? I for one am very impressed.


  • Good points, Jim, about photography/ers nowadays. Though about a P. needing a body guard being as sad day today, remember David is in Rio. I think he will be the first to say that could have happened anytime for the last 40/50 somes years, in the condition he was shooting.

    I hope Cathy has a chuckle, because afetr telling her she needs only a 35mm, and no tripod, David had something heavier: someone holding a strobe for him! And I am sure that david may see the irony (karma?) of makig these (sensible) points to her, he is now having a much lighter gear to carry. Definitely back to one camera (M9, this one ain’t going to the beach!) and one lens, just as he advised us! :-)

    David, sorry for the losses, yet we all know these losses, as avoidable as they seem to be sometimes, are why you have become who you are, a great photographer, respected and admired by his peers (the other greats, I mean). 999,9% of us would still have the strobe and the D700 working, but no shots!

    I wrote karma, but notice I did not say bad karma… ;-)

  • Wow Civilian! what a list of Burnians and their projects. I don’t how you did that?

    By ad libing! ;-)

    I am not working on any Carnival essay….

  • a civilian-mass audience


    I visited all your websites …of course I had inside help…

    and I have to say that…I am really impressed and I am proud of you…

    Keep shooting …don’t loose focus…be ONLY YOU …cause what we Civilians LOVE is…

    YOU and YOU…YOU and YOU…authenticity is what we are after …

    I am waiting…:)))

  • David; What a start to the New Year! Hopefully all the bad luck is out of the way and it will be smooth(-ish) sailing from here on in!

    Panos; I thought it was the I-Phone owner who felt pain when the phone bill came in! :-)

  • Ross – I recently cancelled my service for my iPhone because of that bill and I just moved to a place that ATT doesn’t service. So, an Android may be in my future!

  • a civilian-mass audience

    you should …carnival might be your thing…

    LASSAL…thank you ;)))

    JASON…ah,JASON…maybe Skype is in your future

    VIVA !!! come on where are you BURNIANS…MR.HARVEY needs more …energy !!!

  • As an aside; On New Year’s Eve night it was exactly 12 months since I started shooting the kids project (started on 31st Dec 2008). I spent the night in the roughest pub in town, but everything went well!

    I need to ramp the shooting up this year; as I’ve had to fit it around mag work over the past year. And of course the recession has meant I’ve had to work harder and spend more time getting the paying work in.

    Here’s a link to the first year. A very hard edit needs to be done on them though. But I would be interested in any opinions.


    There is also a Holga gallery. I think I’ve sussed out what it will and won’t do now. I have been surprised about how consistent they shoot. Out of the last 4 rolls I had around 30 that I was happy with (exposures etc). They are great fun to use!


  • Jason; I’ve just got a basic phone because I only use it for txting. My last phone decided to try its hand at ocean swimming too, alas it too didn’t survive the ordeal!

  • David

    Sorry to hear about your dip.

    Reminds me of a little adventure I had with a canoe on a local beach.

    Important safety tip: do not try to dry a camera in a microwave. (ask me how I know this)

  • I put on fifty Aussie smakaroos on my prepaid account over a year ago as I got a message saying please use $23.72 or the money will be lost as it is 2 hours to go before the 12 months are up. I lost $22.47

  • Regarding Jim’s plaint about shooting only for photographers, I tend to agree with his main contention, but am heartened by the fact that with the advent of cheap digital cameras just about everybody is now a photographer. It’s pretty much like complaining that your only market is people with computers, or cars, or arms or legs.

  • About 5 years ago I was shooting at Muriwai Beach when I made the wonderful decision to walk down an algae covered concrete ramp in a pair of jandals (flip-flops- no long socks though!). Two seconds later for some strange reason my feet were in the air above my head and I landed on my side on the concrete.

    Best of all I was wearing a real styley (irony attempt!) photo-vest with a camera lens in the side pocket. The battle between concrete, lens and ribs was lost by the ribs.

    Meanwhile 20 minutes and 2 cracked ribs later I wandered out onto a rocky point to continue taking photos. I turned my back on the sea (yes; stupid I know) to sort some gear out, turned back around to sea a wave about a metre above my head about to crash down. Luckily the old Fm2’s continued working… Can’t say the same about the ribs though! :-)

  • for all still photographers getting their feet wet in video, with the new 5D or another way to shoot HD, a challenge set forth by Vincent Laforet:

    Introducing the first user-generated HD Video Contest where photographers become filmmakers, and we all see beyond the still. To kick off the contest, Canon asked me to interpret what story I saw beyond the still, and to tell that story with the new Canon EOS 7D. My short film will be the first chapter of seven, each ending with a still photograph for the next aspiring filmmaker to interpret. Posing the question to everyone, what do you see beyond the still?

    My short film will premiere on January 7th on Vimeo, and the contest will begin January 15th. I look forward to seeing what everyone creates! More info coming soon!


  • The whole caper is just a canon promo, if one is serious they buy a dedicated video camera life is a lot easier and results so much better. If you look closely one can see the frames jag and stutter especially quick movements close up.

  • now you made me want smoked salmon and a bagel, whole caper

  • ERICA…

    i have been talking lately with a whole bunch of videographers…all say do not shoot with the 5D or equivalent unless unmoving objects/subjects…they say while TECHNICALLY the 5D is fine, it is just too hard to use in real life UNLESS on a tripod and not to be used for say someone walking across a room or towards you…too hard to focus…that shallow depth of field that looks like film is like film..you will have a hard time shooting documentary style…need everyone on their marks….nope , an HD video camera still the best..Vincent is paid by Canon ….great guy, great photog, but a bit prejudiced on this one i think…

  • a civilian-mass audience

    “…LOVE makes for good pics…”


  • David, couldn’t agree more on the 5D. If focusing is hard on moving subjects, try and do that when having to wear reading glasses and moving along with your subject… It might be possible after MANY hours of training though.

  • DAH

    most interesting – I’ve been wanting to purchase this one, sounds as if I should not. The older 5D w/o video seems like a very good camera for me anyway. Thanks for the info!

  • Should say…what I find interesting about the Vincent thing is not the HD or Canon bit, rather the thought of interpreting a still image in moving image – it could allow for some interesting cross over ideas for how people are approaching mm.

  • was it Robert Frank who used the same approach in teaching? had his students go from a still to a film? was it he?

  • I remember something about using an orange as the topic…

    laughing, just googled and my own website came up first, here’s the quote, i put it on scribbling in the dark

    Interviewer: How do you teach film?

    RF: We just make films. That’s all I’m interested in. I can’t just sit there and talk. I give the students a theme. I say, “Make a film about oranges. ‘ ‘ So they think about it, and some write a script or a little story board, some just go out, some don’t know and just sit there and look at you.

    Anyway, same sort of concept in my eyes, starting with an image, or a mental image…

  • maybe this is not the place for it, but try as i might through google stalking efforts i just can’t seem to find Jim powers email!
    Jim, could you send me an email on morgannamagee@gmail.com?

  • man…
    a day later and we still promoting that canon plastic nonsense…
    cmon emcd..enough…what dong u get…?
    how can u get impressed with guys like vincent and cheap 7D commercials..
    get your self a real video camera..and be the next Cameron…
    come down to hollywood…we need u…but hey..get a Real Camera first..
    stop trying to make a deal…!and i thought u were a purist…

  • mnm, you aren’t a very good stalker. Which Jim are you trying to find?

  • Jim, very evocative water shots.

    (She’s looking for you: “i just can’t seem to find Jim powers email!”.)

  • Yeah, I sent her my email. :)

  • EMCD-
    the 5dMk2 is indeed an incredible camera, huge files, great in low light, a real improvement over the 5d. but you can pick up two used 5d’s and a lens for the price of a 5dmk2…

    the 5d2 is a pain to shoot video with, very non-ergonomic. vincent laforet has thousands upon thousands of dollars of gear glommed onto his 5dMk2 to shoot video, as well as a operators, lights, sound etc… however, there is a piece here on the NYTIMES.com website which combines still and video


    shot by robert caplin who, i am PRETTY SURE, shot it with his 5dMk2… not positive, but he had recently posted on his blog a video about a laforet shoot, which he (caplin) shot with the mk2… you can find caplin’s blog and ask him… so, while DAH is kind of right, there are situations where having a video camera in your hand at the same time as a still camera is a good thing, i think the video adds a depth to caplin’s essay…


  • for me using 5d to make a movies is fantastic and fresh thing. Always when new tool is easy and available it is a next step for creativity for ordinary people. And probably it will give a powerful tool for a new art, just like Polaroids, pinholes or lomo.
    Who knows what future will brings.

    and very good example: Christopher Morris


  • I did this little short last summer on a mk2.
    This was all pretty much hand held with focus guesstimation. Took a couple of hours to shoot.
    There is a whole bunch of grip and focus accessories available now for the 5d, but for anything serious I would still use my HD kit, maybe with a mini35 if i needed the fancy DOF stuff.


  • if a video should come close to the quality of the pictures one takes with a camera,
    a lot of effort needs to be invested into a 5dmkII. The internal mic records everything – everytime you touch or move or focus it, it is to be heard. I’m sure there will be kits on the market converting the 5dmkII into a useable video-cam.

    The price slowly comes down, but very slowly.
    Half a year I wanted to switch from my APS-C (10d) to full-frame, and had the same decision to take.
    A used 5d or a 5dmkII. I consulted others which had both. One convincing advise was the automatic sensor cleaning, and the higher ISO ranges with less noise.
    The 5dmkII is worth it. I still have to get used to full-frame, but this camera opens dimensions.
    However, in every aspect – also storagewise…

    Panos – with the 5dmkII I am becoming purist… more and more. I never used the automatic modes of my cameras, but now I am leaving zooms…

  • I like having the video facility with the camera (D90) though I rarely use it.
    So far I’m yet to see the two put together in a way that improves on them being done individually, I imagine it takes alot of practice and skill to merge the two without leaning on one more than the other.

    Also not sure about the tilt/shift on video, I’ve seen a few and they’ve been fantastically well done and completely mesmorising but it ends up feeling too gimmicky.
    I’d rather see a beautifully smudgy large format photograph.

  • ok..ok…
    emcd & marcin…ok..
    im convinced…im buying a canon 7D..or nikon D5000 or D90…
    im going to shoot the next titanic…
    Especially that big O ( OBAMA ) Video convinced me…
    im sold…

  • used to have a 5d 2 but never used the video. We to try an M9 (used to have M8) but only M8 (same size as M9) and M7 available. Held both in succession: M7, camera; M8, brick. I ordered a new MP and it’s the best M I’ve ever used … ever.


  • Bought a cat, called it D700, not much use as a camera

  • ..can’t swim either

  • Imants; That’s cos you never bought a catfish… You gotta read the fineprint on the outside of the box.. :-)

  • Had a catfish once used to saddle him up and ride him into town, the kids a hollering and their Dad’s laughin’

  • Had a catfish once used to saddle him up and ride him into town

    i used to call it mustang…Prius owners used to laugh at me..
    they still do..:)

  • Gosh, you folks talk about these 5Ds and M8s and M9s as if $4-7000 were nothing! I have one camera, a Canon 40D, that serves me well. That’s not completely true: I have my old Canon Rebel as a back-up. No, I don’t have the capacity to shoot video (yet) but if/when I get into that I’ll try to find a reasonably priced video camera that will do the job.

    “The instrument is not the camera but the photographer.” Eve Arnold.


  • “The camera is not the photographer but the instrument.”
    “The photographer is not the instrument but the camera.”

    or was it

    “The photographer is not the camera but the photographer.”

  • a civilian-mass audience

    “Whether the chicken crossed the road or the road crossed the chicken depends upon your frame of reference.”
    Albert Einstein

  • a civilian-mass audience

    Whether BURNIANS crossed BURN or BURN crossed the BURNIANS depends upon your state of mind !!!

    Shall I say …I LOVE you All !!!

    P.S Faces in facebook …thank you all for opening your “facedoors”

  • why did Albert Einstein left magnum?
    why did Albert Einstein never used a 5D?
    why does Cathy loves the 5D?
    why does emcd promotes a 7D?

  • I’m probably speaking too soon since I have yet to try to make a serious video with the 5d 2, but I don’t think I agree with an absolutist contention that a dedicated video camera is better. Which video camera? Better for what?

    More difficult? Yea, no question. But you need a tripod or a steady-cam with any video camera. And although you don’t need nearly so much light with a video cam, you give up almost all control over depth of field. Serious videographers probably pay the price of a 5d 2 just to get the ability to mimic a film camera’s depth of field. And sunny f8 is still sunny f8 if you want to keep things in focus. And an entry level video camera is already more expensive than the SLR. If you’re made of money and have someone to lug your gear around, by all means, buy all the cameras you want. So with all that, I’m uncomfortable with absolutes.

    No, I think it’s a question of technical mastery and creativity. Gotta figure out what it does well and do that with it.

    On a side note, the comment about having to get used to full frame struck me. Man, I never could get used to those small sensors. The 5d 2 was like coming home.

  • The reason I posted the Vincent thing is because of the concept. Creatives could make much from the idea of how to interpret a still photograph with moving images. It seems to participate you can use any equipment, as long as it shoots HD. Could be a regular movie camera. I just mentioned the 5D as I know some people here own one, but I mentioned the concept because I know many struggle with transitioning into multimedia.

  • Regarding the cops essay, I’ll just comment on a couple peripheral issues. One, 1997 sure was a long time ago. Two, having read Charles Bowden’s “Down by the River,” which details events that took place in El Paso during roughly the same time frame, I can’t help but suspect that the photographer missed a huge hell of a lot of the story. That is an incredibly interesting place and time. I don’t get that from the photos.

  • Emcd..:)
    u know im teasing u…( especially since cathy left me & went vacations in the exoticland )…
    im left all alone..noone to play…
    big hug

  • Thanks Jim for your perspective.

    The Cops essay is definately safe, but from a safe perspective the images are still good. The problem is that if we want to be paid as photographers we have to produce what the establishement wants. Maybe it is better to make a living doing something else and still be a photographer so that we can take photos that have real authenticity, are daring and allow for complete creative freedom. Maybe the current economic situation is just what we need. Look at Annie Liebovit’z career. Her best work was when Rolling Stone was just getting off the ground during a counter culture revoltion when money wasn’t the prime motivation. Then with fame and success and Vanity Fair her work became so commercailized and reflected the worship of money, greed, and celebrity. Today’s emerging photographers need to reinvent the medium so that it not just reflects but leads a new revolution of ideas. So based on that I still think there is hope.

  • With respect to the idea of shooting video vs still. I have contempled upgrading my Nikon D3 for the D3S which shoots 24 fps in 720p. It might be interesting creatively to explore. With a D3 or 5D you can shoot up to 9 fps no? I liked Dhiraj Singh’s treatment of these rapid shots strung together that produce almost a cinema based feel in “My Name is Dechen”, but he got cut up for it on Burn. I have often thought of myself kind of like a film director but using still images to tell a story or set a mood. Often the complaint on Burn is that the edit is too long, and could have been cut down. Seems you can’t win. I think as David often says we have to stay loose, even when we view and contemplat essays. The medium is evolving. I don’t think moving images will replace still photos. There is something magical and ethereal in capturing a moment in time, that moving images can not compete with. Two different and complementary visual vehicles.

  • Two different…… visual vehicles.
    absolutely correct

  • Panos, is it wrong to love my plastic fantastic? I feel so dirty.

  • Frank, the 5D2 probably shoots more like 4 shots per second, max, 7D is 8fps, I am not sure you meant to use video as a rapid shot catcher (24 or 30 fps), but is it possible to single out everyone of these 24/30 shots at editing time?

    Even so, I even doubt that stringing 4 shots a second, in an essay, makes for interesting and prolonged creative work. Maybe one every second or more, if the subject can take it, but hardly a technique to be duplicated to tell all stories…

    The problem is: do we want to do multi-media or photography? When you think of it, ultimately 2 different mediums. We can “evolve” photography all we want, in the end, a photo is a photo. For me, MM is 99% of the time, merely a better way to tell a story, a choice.

    Whereas, with a photo, the story, its visuals I mean, is already in the frame (even though sometimes, it may wait years to really tells it).

    To make pictures just a part of a MM installation/edit is to basically take the photography out of a photograph, a perfectly viable artistic concept (which Bob Black pursues, in more ways than one, for example), but one a “real” photographer needs to grapple with and come to terms with, if going that route.

  • BTW, I missed that Jerome’s essay was shot in 1997. What was the logic in showing this 1997 work on an hackneyed subject from a professional photographer? I mean, there must be zillions of such essays, AND photographers if we forget the year and the emergingness. Someone mentionned Weegee in the comments, but Weegee’s shots are always momentous, they exist totally without the context of the day’s event when he shot them.

    David’s prerogative, assuredly, but talking about older pictures, this site is doing marvelous work with all kind of photography from different periods:


  • the problem with YOU , YOUNG T.
    is that..u actually know how to use it…
    ( there goes my axiom degrade it into just a theory… )

  • “Posing the question to everyone, what do you see beyond the still?”

    Ah see them gol dang revenooers, them gubmint men trying to put me outta bidness. Next time Ah sees one of them, Ah’m a-gonna cut them fellers a new one with this shotgun raht cheer.

  • Re SLR Video: A lot of people seem to be under the misconception that the 5D MKII (and the like) will solve all of their video needs. This really is not the case. Although this is a great technological step and one can create some great looking imagery (mostly due to the shallow depth of field)——I really don’t see these cameras as being truley practical option. The camera is very light (for a video camera) and has no vibration/movement control. As already mentioned you can shoot static from a tripod ok… but obviously that is pretty restricting. Also, yes, focusing can be a major issue. Another issue is the position of the fixed LCD screen on the back of the camera. Great for chimping stills, but not so great for shooting live and low and high angles.

    As far as I could see no one has mentioned audio in this discussion. This is huge! The audio from the SLR’s is bad (with an external mic). The best option here for decent quality is record externally, which means that you then have sync later in your editing software.

    If anyone is really serious about taking the step into video, a dedicated video camera is really the only way to go. Even if it is a small prosumer model for $500-$1000, i think you will find it a lot more practical than an SLR and a LOT cheaper. Add on a $200 shotgun mic and you are ready to roll!

    Just my 2c.

    HApPy NeW YeAr aLL!

  • Jim Powers wrote “…I think photographers today are “emerging” to shoot photos for themselves and other photographers. I think we are “post photography,” and photography has become transparent to most people. Images “exist,” and folks don’t really see them as good or bad, just “there.” Interesting, perhaps, for a second or two, then forgotten. We will all, I’m afraid, soon become hobbyists, amusing ourselves with our cameras.

    In a sense, that’s fine, too. Just sad that it’s become so hard to make a living with a camera. Sure was fun. I don’t think folks trying do this thing in the future are going to have much fun, though…”

    I almost, ALMOST agree… but I can’t. I have a box sitting in my living room here filled with negatives from the late 30’s into the 40’s… family stuff shot by a late relative perhaps? I have another box filled with a collection of Brownies, Agfas, and even a nice German Wirgin with a sticky shutter… Ever since George Eastman make the Brownie, The camera has been in the hands of the public at large. Every year, that number grew… Polaroids made the fun more exciting with instant prints in the palm of your hand in just moments… Today, we have cell phones with cameras, most menus being too complicated or confusing for the average non-techy to use. something as simple as a lint ball from your pocket can render the camera useless because it’ll wedge into the tiny recess of the lens and most people can’t figure out how to remove it.

    Sure the digital camera, point and shoot, and cheap SLR are in the hands of millions. No different really than back in the 40’s when medium format was the film of choice… It’s not that everyone and their cat has a camera, it’s WHO has the vision and who has the camera in their hands and how they shoot that’s going to make the difference…

    I did the workshop in NY with David in October, and MAN! what a city! people everywhere! walk down the block and you feel like you’ve passed by 4 different countries. The cities are stacked up in buildings, each with a little grocery store and bakery right around the block… It blew me away, because everywhere else in the country I’ve ever been, the story seems to be – Kids no longer play out doors, computers and games keep everyone occupied, the US seems to lack the social culture the rest of the world has… So, Even though there are 30 million or so with cameras in the phone, or on their wrist, what are they taking photos of? their dog licking the baby, the neighbor’s flowers, the cloud that looked like a duck, the shit faced dude at the house party, them selves? Then when some BIG huge event does happen – oooh say, like when a couple of planes flown by trained religious warriors destroyed the lives of thousands in New York, How can you NOT miss such an event… Whip out that camera!What ever it is and shoot! This is something to remember! This is history in the making!! it was so obvious for the public at large.

    To lean on the crutch and say, ‘ooooh everyone else is going to do it for me, I’m not needed anymore’ is a show of defeat and failure. Ok so you’ve failed at being the great visionary of your time… but your time isn’t up! I think the world is just waiting for the next HCB to show the world that the camera can take simple yet emotional photos.

    But I do agree with you about many contemporary Photographers or “artists.” Tn general many seem to feel that commercialism is evil. If you’re doing your work to make money you’re a “sell out” and to be a sell out is a sin.

    I think what the real problem may be is, the US lacks a national identity and unity. We lack the affection for one another that seems to exist in other countries. It’s a mindset of all for myself. I do this for me, I do that for me. me me me!!! Well what about the good of everyone else!? Seeing photographs today don’t invoke the emotional responses that it used to. Photos are seen everywhere in commerce. and THAT is why it’s a sin… So many artists (especially in musicians) it seems that you can’t make money doing it. It must be for you or not at all. Do it for your enjoyment, not to sell to millions and make millions off of it!
    But their argument falls apart when you ask them about all the people in clubs, or with iPods – the mass audience. People that have no musical talents and want to enjoy music. Who would be left to entertain them if all the artist did it just for them selves! It’s obviously a very selfish opinion and their only comeback is “oh they just make music for the money! They don’t care about the audience” if that were the case – then they could be doing something entirely different for money. no one says they have to make music… I suspect some reeducation of the public needs to take place… the punk/grunge era affected the US in a negative way, leaving youngsters with selfish attitudes about what it means to be an artist…

    Sorry that was so long.

  • Hey – speaking of SLR video…

    This past semester I was working in a multimedia class producing a short piece about something personal. So I did an Autobiography…
    It’s a lot of stills with video – all video shot with a Nikon D90…
    I wish there was more control over the aperture! I want to be more creative with the depth of field!!

    oh well.. Here it is: http://www.jasonhouge.com/Bio.html
    You will need a good strong connection. otherwise, let it load… I may put an alternate version on youtube to speed it up some.

    ONE NOTE!!! before you watch – About the end of the first section – the script was recorded right after being at the workshop and David said he’d like to get all of our slideshows up on Burn – I know he’s busy and there are so many other works to be shown here already. I don’t think it was possible because of the amount of work needed to do it… I’m still hoping mine get shown! but, that’s for David and Anton to decide…

  • and if I wanted to make movies, I’d buy a movie camera, but since I don’t, I ain’t. Saves a ton of money.

  • Akaky, Kodak Zi8, 150$ on AMAZON not long ago. 1080/30fps, fits in shirt pocket. May not be up to semi-pro levels, but twitter is not literature either….

  • Yea, everyone thinks going in that they can make videos on the cheap, but it ain’t so. Video is like a sailboat. Just a big sucking hole that you throw your money in. Kid yourself all you want, but an entry level camera is almost $3000. And that little Mac won’t cut it any more. You need a MacPro with RAM and several hard drives. And software is expensive. At minimum, you need something equivalent to Final Cut, After Effects and Squeeze. Them ball head tripods ain’t cheap. Then you realize you need a wide angle lens, then lighting, reflectors, grip stuff, microphones, backgrounds, a studio — on and on forever. Take a good look at what’s going on in that link from Erica. It takes lots of people with lots of very expensive equipment to make those videos and you’re not seeing one fifth of it. The $3000 camera is the least of your expenses.

  • movie mode
    for me,
    its all about story telling…
    how you want to tell your story…
    in terms of story telling…
    I look at film (medium)
    as placing the camera within a frame
    and having the 3D appear,
    within the 2 dimensional……
    but beyond beautiful imagery,
    there needs to be a story…..
    film (medium)
    are different ways of
    visually communicating…..
    the still photograph,
    is the root,
    the foundation
    of all
    image making……
    story telling……

  • michael webster: totally agree. almost.
    i posted a link, too, somewhere above, to an online stills/video mashup at the NYTIMES.com, and having a still cam which captures video was, i believe, a help in this case.

    here’s the link again:


    now, this could have used an external mike because, as has been noted, these HD cams built into still cameras are not great for sound.


  • Have video capacities on my DSLR and own a video cam……… used the DSLR for videos when I need to record a new technique from a manufacturer ie how to infuse aluminium and plastic. I end up with a combo…….. great images for a PDF,hard copy or slideshow, a short video that can be for the net or individual screens etc.
    When I need to make a video/film/movie I use the dedicated video camera usually a HV30 as I do small screen stuff only or if I need something bigger I beg borrow but don’t buy

  • I agree, Michael W., yet from now on, Leica M9 and expensive video equipment will have to compete with “9/11”, “Abhu Graib”, and “Teheran protests” non-pro equipment, maybe not as finished, reflective documentaries available in usual medias, like TV or movie theaters, but definitely in news immediacy (be it from David as a twitter to a few, or from tehran cell phones to the whole world), and also sustained longevity in the collective memory, so to speak.

  • Well – if you think about it – the same argument is made for digital photography all the time.. A decent camera costs $1500 to start, pro lenses are $1,700 for zooms and $400 on up for primes, You’ll need a new computer to handle the raw files, you’ll need expensive software – Adobe photoshop, bridge or maybe photomechanic, lots of harddrive space – those files ain’t small. then you might need lights! oh and pocket wizards, maybe some softboxes, reflectors, shades, light modifiers, batteries to run it all, light stands, and maybe an assistant or two to adjust the power of your lights and location while you’re shooting… and in the end MAYBE you’ll want a studio too.. It goes both ways..
    So as the masters seem to do it – Minimal is optimal.
    let your subject matter dictate what you’re going to need before you waste your money.
    if you shoot films and put them to music and leave out the wild, then you won’t need mics.
    So video is only as expensive as you make it… if you need lenses and you have a handful of great 35mm lenses you like – get an adapter… besides the DOF of the 35mm lens will be so much better than that of the expensive video zoom. take the expense out and put the creativity back into it!

  • All:

    Please take a look at: https://www.lfi-online.de/ceemes/page/show/heft_aktuell_videos
    All videos made with 5D. As expected very shallow DOF, focus problems, and paning that looks like a fisheye. Very disturbing. Image quality is very good, but definitely is very hard to make videos with lots of motion going on.

    Regarding the street photographers feature in the videos, interesting, but not my cup of tea.


  • Ah, Chris Weeks street… only 2 days into the new year and that terrible series gets linked to. Oh, well there’s always 2011…

  • Jared:
    Nice to know I was not the only one to find that series sort of the paparazzi photographer who in his spare time does street photography holding very expensive Leica equipment, getting just ok photos and making everyone believe he is the ultimate HCB.

  • I could have sworn I posted this comment, so if it appears twice, sorry, something’s weird with the site.

    Regarding 5d 2 video quality, this is what impressed me most when I was researching it:


    Unlike the Canon guy’s stuff, this seems doable. And note that, unlike a video camera, depth of field is whatever you want it to be, light willing.

  • Herve

    I absolutely love dr’s American Suburb X, but there’s a lot of work by established people there…everyone from D’Agata to Moriyama to Mann, Sultan, Nachtwey, Davidson, Lange, Steichen, Arbus, MEM, Levitt, HCB, Eggleston, Evans, Winogrand, etc…maybe I am not understanding you, but if you mean to compare the intent of burn with that of ASX, I don’t follow what you are saying.

  • Just back from the recreation of the original exhibit as per the vision of John Szarkowski of Davidson’s E. 100th Street, vintage prints, hung in the original sequence with the same spacing and hang heights, and also the went in for a 2nd go around for the Frank exhibit of The Americans – both exhibits close tonite, and am so happy to have been able to be in NYC for these. Not a day I will forget. Thank goodness for all the notes and letters and contact sheets and vintage materials preserved over the years – take care of your work, you never know :)

  • – take care of your work, you never know :)…when I am maggot tucker….. ehh doesn’t matter

  • matters to the viewer, silly, not you

  • there will be a heap of new stuff as the whole show just keeps on ………..

  • recreating within it’s own momentum

  • Jorge,
    That video series has been around a bit and while I appreciate his apparent passion, um, he comes off… well, you know… :)

  • Herve, I meant stringing together still images taken sequentially at 4 – 9 shots per second in a multimedia piece. Still images but if done correctly can convey a cinematic sense within the boundaries of photos in a multimedia piece. I really believe MM is the way of the future but using still photos in a mm piece is a new art from in it’s early stages.

    Jason what software did you use to create your bio? Final Cut?

  • so i’m watching the chris weeks videos and wondered if most of you who shoot street use rangefinders, it’s coming across as though it’s almost an essential part of taking good pictures??

  • Erica, I also went to both of those shows over the past few days. I, too, found Frank’s contact sheets very interesting. It was interesting to see how he approached some of those famous images.

    John Gladdy, I gotta say though, I thought the Davidson prints were on a whole nother level than the Frank prints. As I mentioned earlier, the quality of the Davidson prints practically knocked me over. But the Frank prints were pretty much just like all the other museum quality black and white prints I see. I think they would probably look just as good properly prepared for a hi-res screen. Is that because the Davidson prints are new and the Frank prints have faded, or lost something? Or is it the larger format camera? Or Both? What do you think, Erica? Do you agree that the Davidson prints were that much better or am I missing something?

    A few snapshots from the Met: http://www.mwebphoto.com/Galleries/met/slideshow.html

    The 5d 2 video conversation’s got me thinking of doing a little test video. If it turns out interesting, maybe I’ll post a link later today.

  • vicky…
    i only shoot rangefinders ( almost 4 years now )…
    i can talk about the pros forever…
    i will tell u this ( and i mean it )

    ( plz go shoot with ANY camera available… i dont believe i “stealing” photos…if you are able to CONNECT
    with your subjects, the size of your camera does not matter that much anymore… i also DONT belong in the HCB
    school either..i dont believe in that “Fly on the Wall” axiom either…I m more into the DAH school of photography…talk to your subjects, live with them..eat with them, smoke with them..be them…and then noone cares about your gear anymore…BE HONEST..MAKE YOUR SELF VISIBLE…ASK permission…get involved..make yourself a subject too..be the subject…get in your subjects shoes..no stealing the moment..be the moment…i agree with jared…that guys video above – of course i forget his name -is annoying, fake and plain ridiculous …yeah right..shoot only with leica..you will be a better photographer..ohh plz…bull…)

    ..and i tell you all this as a Leica ( rangefinder ) photographer myself..
    big hug

  • hee, thanks panos, i like your approach :)
    guess i’ll stick with my nikon f80 when i want portability, though that Leica really does look nice.

  • I just found this video today. It’s by photographer Dewitt Jones. I used to read his column in Outdoor Photographer and liked the way he hardly ever talked about gear. He tended to talk about creativity and the creative process/mindset of taking photos.

    This video is a bit of a Nat Geo advertorial at the start; and a bit saccharine sweet. But the premise he talks about of actually getting out there and doing it, look for the positive rather than the negative no matter how unpromising things are etc; make it worth a watch.


  • one thing i want to add though….
    yes u do look a lot more ( wayyy more ) sexier with a Leica than
    holding an elephant like a 5D…or a D3..but im not sure if anyone
    cares about that either..
    laughing..( if a 5D looks like your grandmothers sister then
    a Leica like looks like a supermodel..;)

  • Vicky..:)
    also consider the Olympus E-420..
    ( the SMALLEST slr available..plz google this one..i love it..)

  • “u do look a lot more ( wayyy more ) sexier with a Leica”

    well i need all the help i can get now :)
    *starts saving*

  • “yes u do look a lot more ( wayyy more ) sexier with a Leica”

    Yes; but after paying for the Leica You can’t afford to buy the women that it attracts a drink!!! An excercise in diminishing returns…. Buy a Holga; it leaves you an extra $7,000 booze money! :-)

  • Panos

    I consider e-510 as a replacement for m9.

  • See Vicky Panos is really a plastic tabloid leicaphile junkie……. he has to look the goods to take photos otherwise all is lost ………….it that constant search for that self imploding sex appeal that maketh the real photographer

  • Ross..;)
    im not an alcoholic…( i just [only] drink everyday )

  • ah panos, no more digital (i’ve got a d90 and hardly touch it) i <3 film.
    I'm okay for cameras really, i mean i'd like a mamiya 7 and an x-pan but i can do what i need to with what i have, i feel lucky :)
    it's just when you see the b/w leica shots, and hold a friend's leica, you get a little camera lust.

  • Panos; Denial is a symptom not an excuse :-)

  • Imants..:)
    totally agree..
    thats why im visiting the
    Parthenon/Acropolis 4 times a week when in athens..


  • Denial????
    let me check webster dictionary..
    never heard this word before… :^

  • aagh, my comment disappeared.

    panos, i’m okay for cameras really, I’m a film lover mostly.
    just always interested in what everyone thinks :)

  • Ross scrape me off the floor the guy is a natural give him Panos’s Leica and we will have real shots of paradise from the chosen …….. oh my sweet Lord, thank christ he didn’t transcend all with the Maharishi Mahesh Yogi and was only bought up on a diet of Hari Krishna’s vegetable soup.

  • Michael webster. I meant more the physical nature of a print, its ‘concreteness’, than purely its tecnical quality. Also it was in relation to the viewing of physical work vs crt/lcd. Davidson or frank viewed in the flesh or on a screen and in my mind there is no contest. Museums are also not the best place to view photography(IMO). everbody scuttles around whispering like its some kind of religious shrine or something. The object tends to become fetishised and venerated like it was some kind of sacred bone or something….as you can imagine i fall out with people in galleries and museums all the time over this. THEY ARE JUST PICTURES!



    Panos. Looks like im headed out the door with 3 supermodels then ..although mine have lost all their dress sense and had the shit kicked out of them a few times :)

  • John..u r a real man…


  • Vicky they will tell you that the path to heaven is lined with leica’s except for Ross he has further to go so the first part of the journey is laid with cheap plastic toy cameras ………… they are not fireworks that you see they are stolen strobes as the great unwashed head to hell for a bit on the side with their canons primed and ready to fire

  • Panos; You need to buy the Sultan of Brunei edition Holga and the world will become your oyster! Oh and denial is a river in Egypt; ok? :-)

  • thanks Ross..
    i new “Denial” is a river full of pure clean egyptian water…( and im thirstyyyy )
    i just couldnt prove it…

  • “the first part of the journey is laid with cheap plastic toy cameras”

    And they hurt like hell when you have to prostrate yourself on them at the journey’s beginning… But in the distance I see a glinting D700 just waiting for me; forever out of reach an unattainable. I’m stuck in a world of plastic cameras, insulation tape and velcro; through these sufferings I become a better person.

  • through these sufferings I become a better person.



  • Panos; Here’s a NZ soft drink ad for you since we don’t drink alcohol or have any other vices in NZ :-)

  • Ross……:)))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))

  • Of course Leicas attract beautiful and incredibly talented women….


    i think there is a point when photos/pictures become photographs..perhaps not needing a candle lit under them, but nevertheless some do transcend to a higher level of viewing experience..i like the gallery and museum viewing of photographs, minus opening night..for me it is similar to liking live theater as opposed to watching a movie..i am surprised that since you do prefer film to digi that you would not see the photographic print as something in and of itself…in other words, not just a “picture”…imo a picture shows us something..a picture gives information, whereas a photograph has a life of its own…can a “photo” not become an object transcending straight representation??

    cheers, david

  • a civilian-mass audience


    i am still laughing…

  • Ross ..exactly..
    now imagine natalie holding a HULK HOGAN 5D….

  • Panos; who needs a Leica to attract women when you can simply wear a pair of stubbies? :-)

  • a civilian-mass audience

    I can afford stubbies…
    hmmm…i am going for shopping… NOW…;]]]

    Wish me luck

  • the M9 has not yet come out of the bag…for me it is impossible to work when really serious with two systems…i have to go one way or the other, so my first days in Rio i have used the workhorse D700 because i really needed a good flash system working almost in pitch dark some of the time…last nite even at 3200 i would have been shooting at a 15th of a sec wide open and things moving fast, so i did need a flash…thank goodness for the pop up flash on the D700…after losing my only SB800 to a thief, i have been relying on the pop up which is not really good for fast shooting, but i had no choice…i did also play a bit with the G11 which works well when just messing around, but for serious shooting on raw file just does not make it imo..slow…biggest problem of course is who can see that viewing screen if it happens to be bright sunlight? i do have my trusty Vivitar 2500 (25 bucks) which i can use on the Leica, and i may give that a try this evening…

    ok, forget all the tech stuff…Rio is nothing short of amazing…the best thing is the people…what a nice warm culture…despite the worries about theft and crime, which do exist, 99% of the population of this often over bustling city are simply the nicest bunch of people you would ever want to meet…i have worked several times in Brazil before, but with not so much prior experience in Rio..one must always take care here, but if you can get to the heart, there is real heart….

  • Thanks John. Didn’t mean to be argumentative. Just curious. I don’t mind being wrong, kinda like it actually. I still can’t get those Davidson prints out of my head. Did you see them when you were here? Why are they so good compared to other prints I see? Is it because they are still fresh from the bath? Will all that rich detail soon disappear?

    On a related note, I just discovered that the subject of a new project I’ve begun has a 60″ plasma tv. I’ll soon get to see what photos look like on that monster. You know, talking about the cost of things, he paid $2500 for that television and was watching Bugs Bunny when I was visiting. If photos look as good on those things as I think they will, it seems there must be some kind of opportunity to sell quality photos to people with those kinds of displays. Up-thread, someone was talking about the future of photography when so much news is broken, and so many memorable photos taken, by people with cell phone cameras. And in a similar vein, I was talking to the Leica guy at the camera store the other day and he essentially said that people were crazy, or more often just status conscious, to buy top-of-the-line cameras these days, that they only gave you ten or fifteen percent better quality than the point and shoots that everybody has. I think the answer to all that, if there is one, is that that 10 or fifteen percent is what people will pay for. If they like looking at their own crappy photos on their big screen tv, why wouldn’t they pay to view great photos? It’s not like inexpenive video cameras are threatening Hollywood.

    Going to these shows this past week and viewing photographs in the context of discussions we have here made me think that the commercial world of hi-end photography is pretty much designed so that as few people as possible get to see and enjoy it. It’s practically limited to those who go to museums and galleries and, as John says, those are not the best places to enjoy photographs (the Met is particularly horrible). And most cannot, or aren’t likely to, take anything home from those places. I think I mentioned the Davidson book costs $350. Yes, there’s still great photography in a few magazines, but those small pages cannot do great photos justice. And I note that a lot of David’s work in National Geographic is defaced with pull-quotes.

    Maybe photography is such an art that it can only be appreciated by either the wealthy or the seriously dedicated, but I’m not yet convinced. We talk a lot about how photography has to evolve and see no farther than multimedia, which is nothing new on one hand and not really photography on the other. I think the evolution will more likely end up being the way still photos are viewed. 40″ x 60″ prints look great but they are expensive and difficult to make. And is anyone really making all that much selling them? But soon everyone will be able to enjoy a 40″ x 60″ image on their television. People already spend far more time looking at photos on their computer monitors than they do looking at prints. If everybody’s a photographer and everybody’s got a big screen tv, why wouldn’t everybody pay for something beautiful to put on them? And note the popularity of digital frames. I’ll bet someday soon publishers and galleries will be selling those things instead of books or prints.

    Anyway, sorry to go on. I’ve got an actual writing project I’m supposed to be working on instead of doing this, you understand.


    interesting discussion…however i do think the value of limited edition prints and either hand made or limited edition books will rise the more the masses view work on their flat screens…surely, a niche market, but i have never been interested personally in anything other than the niche market…ironic that i shoot for mass media? don’t think so..i see value in the mass media too, but that has never been my long range goal for my work…i have no copies at home of my work published in magazines…i only hang on to books and prints…the role of magazines for me, and all of my colleagues at Magnum, has been to view magazines as simply a resource…a way to get the work..treated with respect of course…and realizing the value of reaching millions of viewers as well…still, the final final viewing of photographs for what they “can be” is definitely not a magazine page for me anyway…even the editors of magazines who hire me know i feel this way…they know well i am going to bust it for them and give them more than just a publishable story…i have a very strong work ethic….but they also know that i am motivated beyond their immediate use of the work..actually, they like this…they know that strong motivation , whatever it is, will yield better work…better for them as well…ok, running…gotta go do what i say i am doing…

    cheers, david

  • a civilian-mass audience


    Ray Charles – Whatd I Say !!!


  • Interesting points. I confess I’m thinking of this more as a consumer than as a photographer. I’d really like to be able to view as many large, professionally produced, great photographs as possible in the privacy of my own home without having to start my own hedge fund to be able to afford it. Am I an untapped market or just an individual living in a minuscule and unprofitable niche? Probably the latter, neh? As a photographer, were I to achieve Magnum level skills, I doubt I’d particularly care about reaching the masses either, though I don’t see how that would be a bad thing. Whatever… we’ll see.

    Regarding David’s Leica vs Canon vs Nikon tests, did I miss the results of that? I’m guessing that the fact he’s using the Nikon on the job pretty much tells us the results.


    you did miss what i said…go back just a few comments….i have not even taken one single picture with the M9 …no results…was impressed with D700 in that it took a full salt water wave on my first day and is still working..

  • Michael Webster…

    Interesting discussion. I think the model of viewing images on a large flat panels in coming. What happens when the price drops to the point where you can hang a 50″ on your wall uploaded with top quality photos. Like a limited edition digital frame done large. The boundaries between all media is becoming blurred. You can watch blu-rays, play video games (which represents the largest entertainment market), and access the net on a PS3. Western Digital offers a media player that streams in HD from your computer. The problem with e-media is the lack of copyright and unlimited reproduction. Here is where you can appeal to the masses via viral-media and appeal to wealthy collectors with limited edition prints and books. Most blockbuster movies these days are just elaborate commercials to sell all the after-market junk. People will always want to hold something in there hands that doesn’t disappear when the power goes out.

  • I saw that, was talking about when you were in New York. Thought you said you and a few friends tested the three. Maybe I dreamed it. No matter.

    Thanks for sharing all these details, btw. I really appreciate what you’re doing for us.

  • I afraid even m9, d700 or 5d will not help to my photography right now. Time with no idea what and why shot anything. Not satisfy from most pictures I did last time. lack of continuity. No reason to take camera off my bag. Any camera. Gear is always excuse only.

    counts only the final result

    nothing more nothing less

    The result


  • David,

    Would you ever take a Holga or a Lomo on assignment? No worries if they get lost, stolen or swept out to sea. Kinda of like an anti-Leica. Not that I have anything against Leica. I learned to shoot an a used R2. I pulled it out the other day and loaded it up. Had a lot of fun taking street shots, but it ate my film on the way out.

  • Michael w –

    there were 2 davidson shows up at the same time, which gallery are you referring to? I did get to see both…Howard Greenberg or the 5 decades show at Bryce Wolkowitz?

  • Greenberg, the East 100th street photos.

  • Michael Webster, All:

    I spent a lot of last year making video on a Canon G9. What started out as just playing around developed into something more serious, simply because I quickly saw the advantage of using such a small camera to film video with.

    Obviously there are drawbacks to using what is basically a good quality p&s camera for making video but once you become aware of the limitations and learn to accept / work around them I would advocate that the camera is workable.

    I must have 80 – 100 hours of video made on the G9 for the “My Friend Eric” film project.

    I trailer for the film can be seen here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1aBBxJtvKeQ

    This was edited on iMovie. I’m considering using Final Cut Express or Pro to work on the final film.

    It seems that the shallow depth of field is not something you have to worry about when using these p&s cameras for video.

    I’ve projected this on a large screen and it looked fine, and it was recently looped to show on a flat screen tv during an exhibition and many people commented how good the quality was. Obviously it is not HD or 16mm film, but for a small pocket camera I’ve always felt it’s good.

    I’m writing this from Singapore. I’m here having a New Year’s reunion with my brother who lives in Australia. Not really any time to photograph here unfortunately, but from the two rolls I’ve gone through it seems like it could be a good place to work on the streets.

    Happy New Year to everyone.



  • Right, the prints were amazing. They were the original (vintage) prints from the exhibit “Curated by John Szarkowski in 1970, a re-creation of The Museum of Modern Art’s groundbreaking 1970 exhibition of forty-two photographs by the highly regarded Bruce Davidson. The photographs in the exhibition are the actual prints, presented in the exact manner in which they were shown at MoMA in 1970.”

    The prints in the main gallery were the old ones, and you noticed they were smaller – I assume they were 8×10, meaning that they were contact prints, as he used a large format 8×10 camera to shoot the body of work. And contacts (or minimally enlarged) of LF are stunning anyway, but on this vintage stock, and masterfully printed…

    While I was there Howard G pulled a print off the wall and showed how the prints were framed, the wire just taped on the back, everything original.

    The ‘selections from E 100’ in the back room, I think it was called the South Gallery, larger and different looking, were the new prints. lovely, but to my eye, less amazing than the contacted vintage work.

    If I recall correctly, the Frank work ws printed at different periods in time, though much was vintage. Still, you are looking at an enlargement of a 35mm neg to an 8×10 in case of his work prints or larger for the images in the exhibit.

    I think you misunderstood my point. I DO see prints as something beautiful, in and of themselves. Thats one of the reasons I make them. My point was towards the reverence that gets attached to prints once they are in a museum setting. Its almost like they become ‘Icons’ purely because of the setting they are shown in. This I disagree with. They are still just prints. Wonderful, glorious, tactile and concrete….but certainly not mystical, at least not purely due to location.
    and of course, yes, some ‘pictures’ do transcend into something else…now if only there were a recipe for achieving that :)P

    Michael Webster. For solidity, depth and prescence a Large Format neg is nearly always going to trump prints from the miniture formats. Knowing the format of a print enables you to appreciate the skill inherent in its making so that a fantastic print from 35mm is no less fantastic than a print from 10×8,but there is little point comparing them directly for detail, depth etc…
    appreciate them for what they are and how they have been made to hold the photographers vision so wonderfully.


  • non-sequitor….

    Family has been watching movies out of our library over the holidays…last night was Armageddon with Bruce Willis and Billy Bob Thorton…..hadn’t seen it in a while, and enjoying the lovely framing and cinemetography from Michael Bay and his cinematographer John Schwartzman when, at the end, I thought I recognized the image from a short panning scene…hit pause….went to the bookshelf… sure enough…almost an exact duplication of Robert Frank’s “Parade – Hoboken, New Jersey” image from The Americans….

    Probably old news for most of you but I’d never picked up on it before….

    good light, all.

  • Well, it ain’t sun-baked babes in Ipanema, but I had fun yesterday photographing my son Robin shaving.


  • but if you mean to compare the intent of burn with that of ASX, I don’t follow what you are saying.

    Nope, I just gave the link, only relating to pictures made years and decades ago. I got into the site thru FACEBOOK and in general took more of an interest in the “found” snapshot photography of the american west,as well as less famous bona-fide (career?) photographers, as they highlighty the work on their FB wall.

    The other guys (“famous”) are easy to find elsewhere…… There is something so predictable about the hierarchy of who’s who in photography, it’s getting boring (even Mozart and Schubert had to wait almost a century to be given their due, Bach even more).

    these old snapshots of yonder year (as well as all the Xmas snaps sent by famly and friends) are refreshing, and always a wonderful (re)discovery.

  • yes u do look a lot more ( wayyy more ) sexier with a Leica than
    holding an elephant like a 5D…or a D3..

    It’s the Bandana, Panos, not the LEICA. That red cranal burkha of yours is a true guy magnet (Maybe chicas too, but all pictures of you show guys lascively eyeing your side).

    You are a whole Pampelone run of the bulls by yourself, ole, torero!!! :-))))

    PS: what was that Clapton/Derek & the Dominos song? LEEEICA-AA, you got me down on my knees”…

  • Justin, thanks for the “my friend Eric” trailer link. Wonderful, I suppose between spending 30 000$ or writing grant proposals for 2 years, and making the movie, the answer is easy. And no loss on the human side of things, using the G9 and imovie:


    5D Hulk Hogan? Not even close, Panos. Check this guy, I bet he needs 15 years on-ite meeting the locals, become alcoholic sharing drinks, before he gets a DAH shot, also a HCB one, and even, I dare say, a HHB shot (that’s moi!)

    :-)))) (sorry about the long link):


  • on-ite= on-site

    Wow, that was a long link! Ok, I’m outa here….

  • Vicky, you dont need a rangefinder to do street. This is a tale told by Leicaphiles to justify how much they spent on the camera.

  • Just as a matter of curiosity about Tell it, Mr Harvey, have you had any contact with the family in the book since the book came out?


    Good job with your video on your friend Eric. Did you record the audio directly off the camera as well? If so, it really served you well both visually and with sound. Quite intimate treatment and that works for this story. I’m really getting intrigued with this video/stll/sound stuff. An art college in Detroit is offering a series of classes on this subject and I’m seriously considering taking it.


  • A question…

    Now that I am on twitter following DAH…

    Any other recommendations of photographers who are tweeting?

  • Cathy,

    lassal has a list of burnians

    and on lightstalkers, you can also find many

    another good source is always to check the follow list of one.
    DAH’s list is quite short, looking into Anton’s list may give you some hints.

    Last .. MrTweet,
    a reporting system, which analyses your network on twitter and hints you to others…

  • somehow wordpress ate my last comment .. strange..

  • Cathy,
    “Any other recommendations of photographers who are tweeting?”

    lassal has a list of burnians

    and on lightstalkers, you can also find many

    another good source is always to check the follow list of one.
    DAH’s list is quite short, looking into Anton’s list may give you some hints.

    Last .. MrTweet,
    a reporting system, which analyses your network on twitter and hints you to others…

  • Cathy,

    lassal has a list of burnians
    her name is absolutlassal

  • another good source is always to check the follow list of one.
    DAH’s list is quite short, looking into Anton’s list may give you some hints.

  • Last .. MrTweet,
    a reporting system, which analyses your network on twitter and hints you to others…

    (sorry for so many posts, but the original post, which contained all of this was not shown …)

  • Last, Twitter has some tools which help you in finding others,
    one is MrTweet,
    a reporting system, which analyses your network on twitter and hints you to others…


  • HERVE:

    Thanks. Working on the film was a very organic process with very little beforehand planning. I was not even aware really at the time that filmmakers spend ages trying to raise funds before starting projects. Discovered this after talking to a few people about the process.

    I got the G9 to use on a workshop I took with DAH in Oslo, March 2008. I used it for that week and that’s it. I didn’t even think about it having video at the time. But then I discovered that function and thought I would just carry it around on the farms while photographing and play around with it. It just grew from that. One useful thing was that I discovered I could easily work with the two formats: keep the G9 around my next and just start filming inbetween making still photographs with my M6. The first scene of the trailer is part of a longer sequence from when I was filming and then took some still images and didn’t bother to stop the G9 filming video. It was only later that I was looking at it with a friend that he suggested it was an interesting piece of film. I managed to find the slides from that same sequence and combined the two. The longer sequence (about 5mins) works better, but it had to be cut to show the trailer in the gallery.

    This past November I worked on a film project with John Cohen who came to visit me in the UK. He told me all about the planning that usually goes into making film. I rented a Sony PD170 this time which uses digital tape. In some ways it was better than the G9 but you work in a different way and for working on your own in intimate situations it would be much harder. I think with film especially different projects / situations would suit different camera types.

    Who has time to sit around trying to write grant proposals when you could be out making the work! Eric is 100 now – there was not time to try and get money on this project. We’ll see how the final film turns out, but I’ll keep people posted on Burn.


    All the film which is in the trailer has sound directly from the camera. I discovered that filming outside with any wind around the G9 built in mic was useless and just recorded wind noise even with the wind filter turn on! So I sometimes would use a Roland Edirol to record sound at the same time as filming. My voice over was done on the Edirol.

    If they made these small cameras with a audio input like the D5 mkII then they would be very useable. I’m sure the time will come when they feature D5 video quality in a G9 size camera – quite soon hopefully.

    Really, the equipment I used was very simple and inexpensive compared with what you could use and spend. It was a case really of just working with what I had. I’m sure if I had more experience editing I could make something even better from the film hours I have. The editing software is the hurdle I think.

    Sounds like that class might be a good way to try out all of this…


  • While we are talking about using 5Ds and G9s to take video the filmmakers are all going nuts about the Red Camera when this gets smaller watch out. You can rent one for about $500/day.

  • Justin, very nice film!

    If you can get quality like this with the G9 how bad could the 5DII be? It can’t be as hard to focus as I am hearing. Guess I’ll find out for myself soon since I’ve got a new 5DII packed and leaving for India Wednesday. I’m not planning to shoot a lot of video but you never know…

    Hope you’re enjoying some of the delicious street food in Singapore. Satay, Chile crab..
    I’ve passed thru there many times on my way to India.
    Interesting spot.

  • Sigapore boring as bat shit ……….passing through sure beat living there

  • CATHY…

    since 5D is a full frame camera and uses normal lenses, it just stands to reason it would be hard to follow focus..as i said, just fine for something not moving towards or away from the camera and ok if on tripod…what is good about the 5D is the out of focus background that you cannot get with a normal HD smaller chip camera, but like everything else, the advantages can be disadvantages…since you are simply shooting for yourself and not on a pro shoot, i am sure you will have no problems..again, enjoy India..


    yes the RED will be the camera to use IF you want to pull stills from video…a 50mg file off the video…i still do not think that just because the quality from the RED will match most still cameras, that pulling a still off of video will in any way be the same as having taken a still picture in the first place…making stills is a whole different body language and thinking process than shooting video which generally must be smoother…..the set up for the still shot is completely different with lots of little micro-composing going on that you just would not do if shooting video…however, i can still imagine the whole industry changing because of it…if i do my Dream Hotel film , i will not even imagine trying to pull stills from it…for me, i will either shoot a movie or do stills, but i have no interest in the combo…well, i always could change my mind couldn’t i??


    yes i do see your point of course…location should not change the intrinsic value simply because of the space…


    i have not seen your film everyone is talking about…i will have to look in the morning…i can barely type…exhausted…in the best way of being exhausted…working well and like crazy….i have weeks to go before i am finished, but one of the best beginnings i have ever had on any story…already thinking book…not a years of work book, but just a relatively quick shoot book….anyway, i do look forward to your film…where do you stand with your book? we are way overdue for a skype chat…gotta be after january 10th at this point….thanks as always for your patience…

    cheers, david

  • Whatever else there is to say about David Alan Harvey, the cat is living the life…!!!

    And while I pray he lives to a ripe old age and has many further adventures, I suspect he could die tomorrow and still be a happy man… how many of the rest of us are lucky enough to say the same?

    I think it’s pretty clear, David, that your tweets from Rio are a resounding success in both an educational sense and just for the way you’re sharing the adrenalin. Rock on!!!

  • ROSS…

    Dewitt Jones is quite the talker about being a Natgeo photographer and he is a great motivational speaker….BUT, i ask you to find even ONE single story he ever shot for the magazine within the last 35 years…trust me, there are none…..i honestly think he only did one story a long long time ago..like in the early 70’s or something…..still this does not take away from what he says which does make sense to most people most of the time…but i must say for those who have actually shot for the magazine in recent history , it brings a wry smile, and always amazes us that his audience never questions this at all…

    cheers, david

  • David,

    I caught your quick and diplomatic edit of that last sentence about Dewitt Jones… but all your secrets are safe with me.


    thanks for shhhhhhh..please keep all secrets secret….smiling…please let me add that i do like Dewitt as a person, can see his entertainment abilities, and he has probably made more money talking about shooting for NG than if he had actually done it!!….and if he entertains his audiences , then good for him and most likely good for them too…..but, you can imagine the “behind the scenes” chatter among those who have actually been doing it every time we hear about Dewitt telling a large audience that he shoots for the magazine…actually, i seriously wonder why nobody ever asks him when and if he actually had a story in the magazine…even if i were not so close to it, surely i would imagine his audience asking for examples of stories published..hmmmmmmm

    meanwhile, you are right…if a lightning bolt hits me between the eyes tomorrow,i will only be thankful for whatever happened right up until that moment…just want a bit more..please, please….

    cheers david

  • David;

    I actually didn’t know he had even shot for NG! I only ever knew him from Outdoor Photographer magazine. I liked his columns because they were more about the thought process of making photos rather than typical gearhead talk. Mind you; the gushing praise he gives NG at the video’s beginnings may mean he’s looking for some work from them :-)

    The aspect I liked about the video was his point that even though a location may not seem photogenic, you can often find something worth shooting. And, that the sheer fact that “nothing” is happening forces you to look outside the square which often pushes you in an unforeseen direction.

    As an aside; I’ve been shooting at the beach every day over the last week and am finding the wide open spaces difficult to shoot after spending so much time shooting indoors this year!

    Indoors you have walls, furniture etc that provide structure to work with. Even shooting in town at night is similar as the black night (sort of) provides the same “walls” etc. It’s been interesting!


  • “even though a location may not seem photogenic, you can often find something worth shooting” Yea me and Raeles find that in those boring men’s rest rooms

  • “even though a location may not seem photogenic, you can often find something worth shooting” Yea me and Raeles find that in those boring men’s rest rooms

    yup…Imants is right..:)


  • Oh god; is it just the 3 of us on the night shift again??? :-)

  • ahh, the glamor.

    “The THOUGHT of a commission is brilliant. However, feeling in ur gut when u have NOTHING so far is humbling. Now there is an ASSUMPTION only”

    that is a truism.. and perhaps the reason many have fear of flying with their photography..
    the bigger the budget on getting us to a shoot, the greater the challenge in-mind – once in the zone and producing though there is no fresher feeling..
    glad it´s working out despite setbacks.. an ability to adapt seems far more important than the choice of lightbox.


    “am finding the wide open spaces difficult to shoot after spending so much time shooting indoors this year! ”
    i can empathize to a degree, especially with the idea of being flash dependent to get the results needed, although i think the same rules apply to working outside and inside – while being mindful of the background if i focus on the foreground inside or out things tend to work out well.
    summer has always been my favorite time of year to shoot simply because the music and culture moves outside, seasonal gigs abroad kick off and the opportunity to work in daylight presents.
    in the winter, in europe & u.s. at least, it is mostly indoors.. and since the smoking ban in many places, venues smell ripe with stale beer and farts, and too much time is spent waiting for the camera to warm up and loose condensation.


    loved the film.. great stuff.. although i agree with those who think a dedicated camera for still and film is the ideal for a project like yours.
    the benefit of the g9 is the fact it is tiny and shooting a little video need not interfere with the photography or amount of kit being carried.. last year on commission i kept one filming around my neck while shooting in some tight spots at parties with good results.. i think your filming could benefit so much from a broadcast quality tool, as you are obviously able to transfer your still photography eye to video quite effortlessly.

    john / dah..

    the real value in prints seems to be when the print is made by the photographer close to the time of shooting.. a good reason for us all to edit and print as we go.
    gallery spaces annoy me at times, mainly when the work on show is shot purely for the gallery audience.. which i find a little pretentious since galleries essentially began as shops.
    while a gallery may be a way people outside of the industry connect with work it in no way improves the work itself.. only presents it in a clinical way, and work which is shot for a clinical showing can come across as banal to me.. thinking of the work on the walls at the london magnum meet now, which one member snapper walked into, stated “this is all shit” and promptly walked out again.

    exhibits which have stayed in mind have never been intended for gallery show, and command the space rather than pander to it.. fondly remembering avedon in london now, with proof prints curling at the edges and taped to the walls like badass kids breaking the school uniform rules..

    prints are amazing objects / pieces of paper / enigmas .. museums and galleries are sterile and occasionally bloated with self importance.


  • Panos,

    Excellent picture! You are Robert Capa our time!


    Great film indeed.

  • Dewitt Jones …
    funny priest type of malakas…
    reminds me of:
    Lafayette Ronald Hubbard (March 13, 1911 – January 24, 1986) was an American science fiction

  • a civilian-mass audience

    you are one of a kind secret keeper…well tested and I definitely would recommend you to all
    BURNIANS…out there :)))

    Da As Harvey…Do As Harvey…and little more…:)))

    I got the stubbies…hmmmm…nothing happened …yet:)))

    you need to drink water…lots of water…IMO…too yellowish …:)))

    sorry I haven’t been around lately…BUT I discovered Facebook and twister…hmmmm…very busy :)))

    2010…slow start for me…I need some inspiration…I can feel though that something is BURNing

  • “…Some months later Capa became the lover of actress Ingrid Bergman, who was traveling in Europe at the time entertaining American soldiers. In December 1945, Capa followed her to Hollywood, where he worked for American International Pictures for a short time. Bergman tried to persuade him to marry her, but Capa didn’t want to live in Hollywood. The relationship ended in the summer of 1946 when Capa traveled to Turkey….”


    ah Marcin…i personally dont think i would turn Ingrid Bergman down…:(


  • one last thing about Robert Capa…

    “…On May 25, 1954 at 2:55 p.m., the regiment was passing through a dangerous area under fire when Capa decided to leave his jeep and go up the road to photograph the advance. About five minutes later, Mecklin and Lucas heard an explosion; Capa had stepped on a landmine. When they arrived on the scene he was still alive, but his left leg had been blown to pieces and he had a serious wound in his chest. Mecklin called for a medic and Capa was taken to a small field hospital where he was pronounced dead on arrival.

    He died with his camera in his hand…”

  • Imants; How do you find this stuff! :-)

    David B; Lately I’ve been shooting without flash more often at night. High iso and just let shutter speeds fall where they like. I’m sitting in on one band’s rehearsals over the next few Wednesday nights so will hopefully get some more candid stuff too.

    Civi; have patience, they will come…

  • Civi, you don’t get looked on “Farm Town.” We’ll never see you again! ;)

  • Great way to start my day, staring down the barrel of Panos’ yellow pee. Remember one glass of water for every drink.

  • Just to go off on a tangent check out http://www.menuez.com/data/web/1-Menuez.mov

    Cheers and best for 2010


  • i just want to stop in here for a minute and say hello …i am too far behind in the conversation to know what is going on….my only time for Burn is in reviewing upcoming material, but very little time to check in here for comments…surviving on 2-3 hrs. of sleep over the last 4 days, but will try for more tonight…

    surely surely i am in my element…if i do not get photos/pictures/photographs out of this, then i should try another profession…the contrast of hot hot danger danger passion passion is right out there..again i must EMPHASIZE that this is one of the all time terrific cultures…

    best people on the planet, even though some of them are armed to the hilt…seems contradictory, but is not…points up again how circumstantial all of our lives really are…

    the “bad guys” here see themselves as Robin Hood or something…take care of their own…them against the invasive police…their territory…of course the police see it another way…this is definitely a war zone…with two points of view…with two solid points of view…last night in the favela i saw a young boy of about 14 with i think a Tech 9 (i do not know all types of guns) …he was on patrol in the hood..always expecting to be invaded by the police….he was laughing and chatting with a woman and her daughter….

    i could not take this picture…at least not yet…it would have put the contact i went in with in personal danger or reprisal…however, working on it…building trust…so far, everyone tells me i will never be able to take this picture….we will see…you have to remember that most of the citizens of Rio would not even consider being up in a favela with a camera at 2am…most have NEVER been up in the favela at all….of course the favela is full of truly friendly folks..families, school kids, ballet dancers, wanna be graphic designers…everybody…life as per normal with just a couple of wrinkles….

    you must also know (from their point of view) that anyone taking a picture of this kid, if it got in the wrong hands, could be death for him and maybe his family…yes, i want this picture, but yes i must wait…this is no time for misplaced bravado…

    stay tuned….

    cheers, david

  • Remember one glass of water for every drink.

    this technique eliminates storage..cuts stomach capacity by half….
    sorry for ruining your day..:)

  • David…

    When you feel comfortable to approach this kid for a photograph, what will you say to him?

    Will you try to convince him of the importance of recording his likeness for sociological/historical prepossess by saying something like “it’s not *you* I’m interested in but the *role* you are playing in your community”? the exact opposite maybe, as in “I’m interested in *you* and your personal story”?

    Something completely different??

    I’m very curious in how you present your intentions to your subjects. You always speak of being up-front, open, direct…




    yes, i always present myself as someone who will allow them to have a voice if they so choose…i showed last night my Living Proof book…so they could see i have often integrated myself into various cultural situations and they particularly identified with the work in this book…….they looked very carefully at each picture..i also had a copy of my previous published Natgeo story on Bahia..between the book and the magazine story, they pretty much get an idea of who i am…persona a persona people can pretty much size you up..as i do them…then they make the decision to let me hang out or photograph them having coffee or with a machine gun or whatever…mostly it is eye contact and body language….show respect and no fear…yesterday i photographed simple things like kite flying and night time dancing etc…some people at home…actually kites in the air over the favela signal peace…no cops…no kites in the air is a danger sign for many…

    by mid week , i will return with pictures for them..this always helps …makes them feel good…makes me feel good…

    cheers, david

  • Thanks David… most helpful… :))

  • Thanks for that info David. I approach it the same way, though not quite so successfully. Respect and no fear. No fear is especially important. Hate to compare people to dogs, but in this case it’s apt. Dangerous people are more likely to hassle you when they sense fear. I suspect what you said a few posts back about being able to die happy gives you quite a bit of power. If you care too much about your life in those situations, you are more likely to lose it.

    John G., Erica, David, thanks for the printmaking 101 comments. It’s been many, many years since I used chemicals to make prints and my memory is not very good. I hope you didn’t think I was in any way arguing for or against anything. I have great respect for film and the chemical darkroom, I am simply not very good at it. For me to have a chance at being a very good photographer, the digital advances were necessary. Still, my bad memory tells me people I knew, and even myself on occasion, used to produce great looking black and white prints from 35mm negative film, more like the Davidson than the Frank. Probably my memory, but either way I was a little disappointed with the Frank show. Perhaps it has something to do with him being a pioneer and his then-radical technique having become commonplace? I’d like to get the book and have more time to look it over though. I’d like to study how he built a narrative with the choice and sequencing of the photos, but the Met was such a zoo on Saturday that it was impossible to stand back and contemplate.

    Regarding the ongoing 5d mk2 video discussion, I may be wrong, but I get the impression a lot of people misunderstand a few basic points. First, the ability to shoot shallow depth of field is a feature not a bug. Or better said, the ability to control depth of field is the chief selling point of the technology. You can have as much depth of field as the light allows. And you can use your L lenses. Video cameras in the same price range do not give much control over dof and the ability to change lenses is very limited, if available at all. That control, coupled with the relatively large sensor give one the ability to produce much higher quality video than with a typical video cam. The problems with the 5d mk2, at least for the price range, mostly concern ease of use. Also, and this is very important, be sure you have downloaded the latest firmware for the camera from Canon. Yesterday was too cold and windy to go out and produce the little demo video I have in mind. Maybe I’ll come up with something later in the week, but more likely next weekend.

  • ALL:

    Thanks for the kind words about the film. We’ll see how the final work turns out when I get a chance to start working on the edit. Still some hours of film I have not looked at in any detail. I’ll give Burn the first preview.


    I know what you’re saying and I agree. But there is no way I can recreate any of the film I’ve got now so I’ve decided to just work with what I have. That’s been the drawback of just messing around with a camera turing into something dedicated and serious organically.

    However I’ve looked at HD camcorders and they certainly require a different way of working and I expect would be a lot harder to work with a still camera and one of those at the same time. As you said, the G9 is small enough to just hang around your neck and keep filming while you make stills. Just the design alone and how it hangs on the strap allows that. An HD camcorder has no neck strap and would not even hang like that if it did. It’s just a simple thing but would have made all the difference how much of my film was recorded.


    Yes, let’s try and catch up on skype later in the month. I’ll send you a reminder at some point.

    Here is the link to the film trailer: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1aBBxJtvKeQ

    Stay safe over there and good luck.



  • “I’ve been shooting at the beach every day over the last week and am finding the wide open spaces difficult to shoot after spending so much time shooting indoors this year!”

    I wish that I could go to the beach. Well, I guess I could go; the Polar Bear Club goes to the beach every weekend, but I fear that I am not that hardy. The past couple of days it’s been 18 degrees here (-7.77 C) with a wind chill of -2 (-18.8 C). In any case, there is just something about a cold, snowy, and windswept beach that makes you not want to be anywhere near it. I wonder, though, about why the Polar Bear people find going to the beach under such conditions so attractive.


    What a privilege to be behind the scenes with you on this assignment. It’s my first experience of this kind and I am mesmerized. Helps me begin to see what goes on to get the pics and essays in magazines and books that I all too often take for granted. Do hope you’ll let yourself catch up on sleep, though. Bodies are funny things – they will let us push them just so far before they opt out.


  • Justin

    I love what I see on your trailer. Also, I’m sure that Utube does not do it justice. Thanks for showing us what is possible. As always, the limitations are mostly between our ears rather than with our gear.
    I’m very impressed and inspired by this project (not just the film). Can’t wait to see more.

  • justin – isn´t that just the way :ø)
    the number of times that `playing about` has turned into the final piece.. especially with photoshop..

    i still think it´s a real success..

  • I suspect he could die tomorrow and still be a happy man… how many of the rest of us are lucky enough to say the same?

    Funny, Sidney, I just wrote that (first sentence) in an e-mail to a good friend, yesterday!

    I think it’s pretty clear, David, that your tweets from Rio are a resounding success

    I like that too, but I think they are posts, not just tweets, Sidney, if on FACE. I think it’s great david does both. In the end, it will be clearer which medium brought more insight in his daily thoughts and happenstances.

  • 5d mkII experiment/hack from last summer.
    Commissionned by the westway development trust. Dont laugh but the soundtrack is a piece called ‘John Gladdy falls in love’ by my friend, and fellow photographer, Jannis Goutman.
    It was shot and edited in less than a day so its a bit….loose.


  • a civilian-mass audience


    you don’t always have to have the picture…hmmm…
    what’s wrong with changing profession…after all…:)))
    it’s never too late …:)))

    I checked out Farmville…but when I started my tedious posts…they threw me out …:)))
    so, here I am …I am following a red mustang …MAMA HARVEY is driving fast…

    if the stabbies won’t work…I will go for the M9…:)))

    WHAT NOT TO FILM !!! I love you all !!!

    P.S “what a privilege to be …behind the scenes …” as our Patricia wrote…
    we always like to go…deeper…and deeper…VIVA !!!

  • a civilian-mass audience

    WELLINGTON, New Zealand – A tsunami unleashed by a major earthquake plowed into the Solomon Islands on Monday with the crashing waters devastating at least one village.

    please, all BURNIANS in the area …proceed for check in …in the BURN area …!!!

  • DAH,

    I really am enjoying being on assignment with you in Rio. At first I did not know what to think about the addition of the tweets but I now think its great and a big success.

    Ciao, Valery

  • Branching off…. Next post from Bangkok, that’s Rio enough for me! ;-)

  • Nice video, John. As with still photos on the 5d mk 2, the biggest practical limit is the available light. Clunky controls aside.

    Regarding Justin’s G9, or any other video camera — when it comes to the final product, the most important feature is resolution. Standard NTSC (regular television in the States) resolution is 720×486. HD or blu-ray is 1920×1080. They need to be shot at 30, perhaps 28, fps. The G9’s maximum resolution at 30 fps is 640 x 480. And that’s not bad for a point and shoot.

    So when one considers using the video feature on still cameras, or less expensive dedicated video cameras, one needs to realize that if you don’t have at least SD capability, you will only be able to show your video on a computer monitor, or with a lot of black space on a tv, and that then it will look like crap if resized above its saved resolution. Lack of manual control is another topic.

    Hope I’m not being tedious about the video specs, but I get the sense that a lot of people are unclear on the ramifications surrounding still camera video capabilities.

  • OK, what’s the big announcement coming up? It’s ok, it’s just between us.

  • Civi; I only just heard about the tsunami; thankfully no injuries. Samoa is still trying to get back on its feet after their tsunami…

    Akaky; About 23 degrees C, here and school holidays. Summer besach camping holidays are having a resurgence; used to be all the rage but popularity died through the 90’s. People often stay in family owned seaside cabins (called bachs or cribs here) or in family tents. Of course they are full to the brim during the Xmas summer holidays


  • Akaky; this is where I have been going to shoot.I think that there would be a good story to shoot following “bach life”; but too busy with the kids at the moment!


  • a civilian-mass audience

    BRAVO SEAN !!!


    DAVIDB,Hi BEATE …nice to talk to you …VIVA !!!

    Keep it up…ANTONNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNN…come on ANTONNNN…spill the ouzo or the shushi…

  • David,
    Seems like it’d be a lot like shooting Living Proof – I see more about what you mean when you talk about the importance of doing personal projects and publishing them. It gives you experience, and shows them you’re able to conduct your self well and become a part of their culture. shows them you understand them…
    Thank you for doing this David!

  • Unlike Civi, I am not at all happy. It is freezing here in our happy little burg and to make matters worse, today is my first day back at work since last Wednesday. In the short time I was away, the pile of paper on my desk has reached truly mountainous proportions, which only leads me to believe that paper is a living thing, although I am not sure whether paper counts as animal or vegetable, and it spends the time I am not here busily reproducing itself in order to annoy me to the nth degree. I don’t know why paper would want to do this, except for the cheap thrills and the store coupons.

  • “busily reproducing itself in order to annoy me to the nth degree”

    But weren’t we meant to be living in a paperless society by now? Those envelopes containing bills are the worst culprits, they reproduce faster than bacteria! Now, just gotta find a vaccine… :-)

  • Today was my first day of work, too.
    We are going through a massive restructuring of the company, internal political stuff and the programs just going on, if there was no break at all.
    But on the other side, it was quite successful, as I draw several ideas for essays. – This is my little escape from the daily madness of big corporations.
    Now .. January, 20th .. for me always a special day, … here, makes me really curious ..

  • I think the best cure to bills is to not have them.

  • David;

    Your posts from Rio have been great. What they’ve reinforced is that no matter how good your technical skills are (& yes; they have to be right up there) the most important skill is the ability to insert yourself into situations, interact with people and put them at ease.

    I suppose they have to recognise you are treating them respectfully and with honesty.

    If you can’t gain access to take the images you want then those technical skills aren’t any use anyway! Would you say that the most successful “documentary” photographers you know also possess great people skills too?

  • Michael the DOF and pain in the arse to use is the least of the problems it is the jagged movements of people moving etc that puts me off using the video in my camera. Maybe the video cam does not have the same DOF but there is a natural flow of movement. Video guys see the whole game very differently than the still guy dabblers……. http://www.tropfest.com/au/History.aspx

    94ºF here today

  • a civilian-mass audience

    “To me, there are three things we all should do every day. We should do this every day of our lives. Number one is laugh. You should laugh every day. Number two is think. You should spend some time in thought. And number three is, you should have your emotions moved to tears, could be happiness or joy. But think about it. If you laugh, you think, and you cry, that’s a full day. That’s a heck of a day. You do that seven days a week, you’re going to have something special.”

    Jim Valvano (American basketball coach, Coach of North Carolina State U., 1980-1990; won NCAA championship, 1983 1946-1993)

    VIVA RIO !!!

    P.S KERRY …can we have a hint…??? ANTON …???
    ok…I know…I am a civilian…I can wait …pffffffff…
    ROSSY…thanks for the report…I see IMANTS 94 and I can relate to AKAKY…
    THOMAS 20th…I am looking for something special for you…like 45 candles…maybe…!!!

  • 20th jan is one year since obama was inaugurated..

  • a civilian-mass audience

    Maybe you adapt …very easily …hmmm…maybe you became one of them…

    BUT there is another day…when the rooster will be out there…and the beer will be waiting…
    and the dust will be all over…

    Please someone stop me…

  • ROSS…

    yes, i would put people skills right up there at the top….i have witnessed so many situations where one photographer might say “they would not let me take a picture” and another come back with a complete shoot from exactly the same situation…i think documentary photography in particular requires a whole set of skills from the tech, to people relationships, to sense of the significance, to simply having the endurance/patience to stay focused for long periods of time…


    i was just thinking yesterday that if only i could somehow have anyone/everyone with me on a long haul project they would learn more in a few days than in a dozen workshops…my assistants always have an experience they claim that beats all others…i will go for some sleep tonight…but, when things are happening it is impossible for me to stay away….i do take short little naps, like in a cab ride, that definitely help…this trip to Rio is relatively short…just 12 days of shooting….but, i will return for a solid 5 weeks in a row i think…this trip was mostly just to find out if i could even work here in a reasonable way…


    we will touch base regarding your university when i return..yes, some of this shooting is quite similar to what i was doing with Living Proof…at least the work in the favelas…however, i will try to do many situations going from spending time with the privileged to the not so…all in all the best education one could ever have in any particular cultural environment…

    cheers, david

  • Music Creeping Coastline Of Lights
    Mark Lanegan

  • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YzNosK82NSs

    …when u smoke my weed man..u gots to call the green man…

  • a civilian-mass audience

    SPACECOWBOY… I need your help…ASAP…

    You know where to find me…Thank you

    “life is a “struggling” photo essay which needs constant photoshop…”



    I’ve been thinking about your assistants on this assignment. What an amazing experience for them to be “in the zone” with you! I’ve seen you in action a couple of times and will not forget it. You are a study in constant motion, stretching high and dipping low, off to one side and then the other, shooting from every angle and POV imaginable. Constantly click click clicking. Reminds me of a whirling dervish, not just the motion but the concentrated focus and sense of oneness with all that surrounds.

    I also hope they have unlimited reserves of energy! Keeping up with you would truly be like running a marathon every day. Hope they can catch catnaps like you do! May this day and night off from shooting offer a chance for you all to recharge.

    It sure sounds like Rio suits you to a T. Can’t wait to see your photos in magazine and book form. Stay safe and enjoy the hell out of every minute. I know you already are…


  • david
    you continue to inspire…
    thank you…

  • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SLD_8IOE86w&feature=related

    Come down to the willow garden
    with me
    come go with me
    come go and see

    Although I’ve howled across fields and my eyes
    turned grey
    are yours still the same?
    are you still the same?

    Carry Home
    I have returned
    through so many highways
    and so many tears

    Your letter never survived the heat of
    my hand
    my burning hand
    my sweating hand

    Your love never survived the heat of
    my heart
    my violent heart
    in the dark

    Carry Home
    I have returned
    through so many highways
    and so many tears

    Carry Home to where I am from
    carry to the place that I have come
    carry to the dust and flies behind me
    carry to the cracks and caves on the face of me

    Oh, but I didn’t change, I just had to work
    Yeah, but I didn’t change, I just had to work
    and now I’m home, and now I’m home
    do you still want me?
    Now, that I’m home

    Come down to the willow garden with me
    come go with me
    come go and see

  • Panos, those seem very Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds-like.


  • ~ Civi, Civi, good things come to those who wait, my friend. This will be no exception. ;-)

  • a civilian-mass audience

    KERRY, BURN Headquarters Lady,
    Red hardcore Aussie,
    I have to admit …only 2 fingernails left…and nobody wants me to start with my toes…
    BUT as I said before …I can wait…!!!

    Today I am drinking soda …For my BURNIANS !!!

  • civi.. go out, take pics! have no camera? get a click and throw one!

  • Civi, Civi, is there any way we can help? You are always there for us, let us be there for you now…


  • David;

    I can only imagine what your assistants get out of the time. For instance; I watched Martin Parr at work on the UK streets in a Magnum doco on TV a while ago. It was only a 5-10 minute clip but I was amazed what I learnt by actually watching him work.

    It showed me how willing people are to be photographed if you approach them openly and with confidence. Approaching people was always the most difficult for me to come to terms with. Especially coming from a natural history background; a tree doesn’t often tell you to bugger off when you shoot it! :-)


  • a civilian-mass audience

    OUR PATRICIA, my white Eagle,

    i am looking for some BURNIANS…it has been long time since I’ve heard from them…
    and I am kinda getting very anxious…I miss Spacecowboy too…and I just hope that everyone is doing fine
    out there…
    of course I thank the spirits …everyday …cause at least we have the twists from PLATO!!!

    i am not gonna buy a camera…nope…as long as I have you…ALL of YOU…I am ok :)))

    Keep BURNING …keep shooting…keep tweeting…keep Facebooking…keep Skyping..I LOVE U

    P.S Thank you OurPAT…hugs to ED…!!!

  • a civilian-mass audience

    HERVE …be safe…
    please follow MR.VINK’S suggestion…and throw us a pic …

    Oime…BURN is getting really HOTTTTT !!!

  • a civilian-mass audience


    # 600…gotchya :)))


  • a civilian-mass audience

    OIME :))) !!!

  • Hiya there!

    Just a quick update. We’re starting to paint the gallery here on Friday, and fit flooring next weekend. Should be interesting. We’re also looking for submissions for after March, but for the time being, as we don’t have any grants or funding we do need contributions from authors (though, we have probably some of the cheapest square feet in Cardiff).

    (Currently, this page is mostly for either bookmarking or for going from it to the facebook page)


    Civi..Civi..i am, here..you are with me, on my mind, in the palm of my hand, at the tip of my fingers..sweetly held, shivering, silent, smiling. Civi..civi..i am not gone. i have been sans internet. i have been at the loft, thanks to David and his eternally kind kindness.

    The wind howled and, smashed the windows, the hardy Brooklyn landscape girded its loins, piled on the layers, the gloves, the feathers, the wool, the scarves, huddled unto itself, in warm little lofts, bundled under down quilts or perhaps naked on fur rugs for all i know..frozen fingers wrapped round coffee cups at Marlow’s Diner, shoulders brushing shoulders, hips swishing against hips, adoring looks passing unchecked over plates of diner fare or through frosty windows, the odd piece of debris blowing up the street like Tom Hyde’s sagebrush tossing end over end up up Broadway deserted except for the odd mini-van driven by a Hassidic Jew, black hat perched almost jauntily atop a dark head, not doing much to keep out the cold, turning a corner and disappearing down an eerily vacant street. Where is the life, i wondered, faces peeking breifly out of windows and drawing hastily back into sheltered interiors, hovering over stoves and little tables in tiny apartment kitchens..but always, always the lights twinkled in merry disregard across the water, beckoning to any who dared to brave the elements to come, come ye olde frozen souls to Manhattan. If you can find a subway that is..

    Civi..am making my way now to e-mail. Writing you. Join me, please.


  • nice one bjarte – good to see your perspective and knowing your work i can see why you chose as you have.
    as an aside – i still cannot post comments to your blog.. no idea why.. same with other |NKF peoples blogs.. very odd.

    also – it’s antons niece..
    happy new year my friend.

  • also bjarte – please email me as i have a possible exhibition lead for you in new york..
    norwegians only, apparently.

  • a civilian-mass audience

    KATIE, my Street Fighter, KATHLEEN FONSECA…

    your e-mail …is whatever I call …THE TRUE FRIEND…
    OASIS through my e-mails…
    OUTOPIA for my everyday day struggles
    NIRVANA for my silent nights

    OIME …with people like you …around in the Universe…life can be BURNing …eternally !!!

    BURNIANS …you are the Flames of a BURNing Mythotopia !!!

    P.S BJARTE…only this…keep digging…BURNIANS are amazing…whatever your top 10 is…
    you can never go wrong !!!

  • a civilian-mass audience


    Please, send him …good energy…and good spirits…

    you are a BURNIAN…you are strong…

  • BJARTE..

    thanks for looking and thinking…good list i feel…


    i forgot to tell you how to control the heat in the Burn Hotel..you can make it warmer in front and cooler in back…next time

  • David: I often too dislike the advantages of digital when I review the photos at the end of the day…what was supposed to be a great and very inspire photo session, ends as not so great pics at the screen of my computer. At least with film there is a time lag than can help looking the pics in a more calm way (and perhaps more objective).

    My toughts



    well, maybe…i usually do not like looking at my pictures with film either…but, as you say, at least enough time goes by that your disappointment is delayed…in any case, if i were not forced to edit or look at my work, i might delay delay delay the pain for a very long time….

  • David.. have you happened to be at Copacabana beach by night, after midnight.. are there still kids collecting cardboard, bottles, cans.. whatever.. or just sleeping on the beach? I wonder how much has changed with the presidency of Lula, I know many people (those I know at least) had great hopes.. it was one heart and gutwrenching experience.. kids.. with dead eyes..

  • David B

    Thanks for correcting me, it’s fixed now. Your problem with commenting should have something to do with your settings. I don’t know exactly which setting though.

    Happy new year you too!


    I almost agree with “you can never go wrong”, because there are certainly good and bad no matter what you search for in life, be it music, art, photography, friends or coffee for that matter (!). Burn is no exception. But the quality is generally very high, which is why I HAD TO make this list.

    David AH

    Thank you back, this list wouldn’t exist if it weren’t for you.
    My interest for photography probably wouldn’t be this big if it weren’t for you.

  • DAH,
    reassuring to hear you also have the urge to delay looking at pics from a project. When shooting E6 I sometimes would string out untill the last minute untill I was really up against it with the client. But when you see that jewel shinning magnificently from the the lightbox, phew ….what a relief. I suppose it’s the same with digi but the timescales are forshortened as everyone wants everything NOW…

    best of luck in Rio.

    P.S. also reassuring to hear that others get so involved in “getting the shot” that you end up wading into the sea with phone,wallet etc in pockets. Lost quite a few phone this way.




    Naturally as photographers most of us know the feeling you are describing of disappointment in the initial editing stage, and because digital is so immediately accessible, it makes it worse. Nothing, or very little, quite lives up to the expectations and hopes… and in the immediate aftermath of shooting, nothing seems to have adequately captured the kinaesthetic excitement and vividness of the experience.
    Later, much later, if one goes back and looks at the photos again, with a more detached but also possibly more open eye, there may be gems overlooked in the heat of the moment that are good or even great photographs… but they weren’t necessarily part of the deliberate or conscious process of shooting. At least in my case, this happens over and over again, and I have to keep reminding myself that a week from now or a month from now, and certainly a year from now, these pictures won’t look the same to me… It is part of the mysterious process of still photography that it has this delayed pyschological awareness component to it… if we were capable of visually capturing exactly what we saw and felt, no more and no less, then I’m not sure we would learn as much from photography as we do… it is the unexpected mutations in awareness that come with the time delay that are part of this mysterious process. I remember way back in Road Trip days your talking about the editing process for a book or exhibition or extended photo essay and how we had to forget what was on our minds while shooting and concentrate on what story the pictures in hand were capable of telling best, or something like that… now, of course there has to be a preliminary crash edit while you’re in the middle of an assignment like this… but inasmuch as you are also ‘crashing’ from the adrenalin high of total involvement in the subject and the shooting process at the same time, I don’t see how even you, even with your years and years of experience, could objectively evaluate your pictures so soon after the event… usually better to wait as long as possible. Fortunately, storage is cheap these days, so one can do some triage editing without deleting things forever.

  • Disappointment,

    This sounds familiar.

    I suspect that a great part of the difference between the disappointment felt when shooting digital VS film comes down to the relief felt when viewing your film shoot after the nail biting wait. This is especially true with commercial assignments where you gotta come back with the goods. My first time through in film days was a quick look at everthing just to make sure I had the shots I needed, relief, thanks to the lab and film gods, then a closer look.

    Digital largely eliminates that anxiety and lets you go back and re-shoot immediatly, correct tech issues etc. In the end it changes the way we shoot, allowing us to take chances we likely never would have with film.

    No going back for me.

  • David, Jorge, Sidney, When I download photographs; digital or scanned negatives, I try to keep in mind that they are just that … negatives. They need to be developed, in my case in Lightroom. I also find the slideshow option in Lightroom invaluable for showing your finished photograph without distraction.

    I also find it easy to be drawn to The One”: you know, the photograph that you just know is the special one on the entire roll or card. With film, especially scanned negative film, you have time to consider all of your photographs: you make a preview scan and then look at it in detail while making the full resolution scan. With RAW digital, you are confronted with an image that looks not to shabby, but you must remember that it is just a digital negative and is showing nowhere near its potential.

    David, I’ve very-much enjoyed reading your thought processes during your current shoot – more please – particularly the background as to why you chose to work in the favela, HOW you found a contact and guide/introducer in the favella, whether you ever got the photograph of the boy with the pistol and if so how you managed to reveal him to us but conceal him to the police?? I know you speak Spanish but do you speak Portuguese? This kind of information is not tech stuff but, rather, an invaluable teaching resource for emerging photographers and what I hoped to see here on Burn from the outset – not just from you but from other established photographers of your acquaintance.

    And have you tried out the M9 yet?


  • DAH, ref your last twitter…
    I found with film, I never knew if I definitly had it in the bag 100%, so kept on pushing,pushing to get the shots. I find with digi there is a disappointment when reviewing after a day’s shoot (as mike said above….give it time) but also I know I have the shot so this can sometimes lead me to “relaxing” on the job and sometimes not pushing as I should.

    Exciting stuff



  • OOPs sorry it was Sidney above who said give it time.



  • Mike and Sidney: I totally agree with your reflexions. One of the main advantages of digital is viewing the shot inmediatelly, as long as one keeps in mind that the RAW image is like a negative that needs post processing job, so it won’t look to good viewed on the camera. Besides, one can get very anxious chimping continously on the screen of the camera, loosing then concentration on the subject and that special “state of grace” son much needed when shooting on real situation.



    I have a terrific contact for you in Rio. Sorry I didn’t think of pursuing this until I read today’s tweet about your wanting to make contacts with all levels of society in Rio. Her name is Martha Albuquerque and she is a photographer I met on PBase.com. Martha lives in Rio and would LOVE to help you. I mentioned in my message to her that maybe she could accompany you on a shoot either this time or in February and she’s delighted with idea!

    I’m sending you her email and phone numbers by email (david@burnmagazine.org) with the subject, “contact in Rio.” Best wishes!



    i have no time to read all the comments here, but just happened on now….many thanks ..i will look for your email…

    hugs, david

  • Wow, I still find it mind boggling that David doesn’t like to look at his work, especially since he spends so much time looking at the work of others. Each to their own I guess, and it works for him. I wish I could look at a lot more of it. I learn a lot from what little I see.

    Regarding the picture you see on the back of your digital camera, that is not the RAW file, that is a tiny JPEG the camera, at least Canons, creates and applies settings to. It’s not good for much beyond seeing composition, blown out highlights, and getting an idea about sharpness, all of which which is useful in itself, but it’s not the RAW image.

    And Imants, regarding the 5d mk 2 video, I’ve seen a lot of reports of choppy motion and stuttering during pans but have yet to experience any of that myself (just reviewed a few short tests I did). Researching on-line I find that a lot of people have those problems but that they have either not upgraded the firmware or are not shooting fully manual. I trust that there are situations where those problems occur, but I suspect that they aren’t that numerous. And I’ve no doubt that dedicated video cameras have many advantages compared to just a few for the mk 2, but it is essentially a free video camera and provides great creative possibilities for people willing to figure out and master its idiosyncrasies.

  • Hi All

    a quick note to let you know that Jason Eskenazi’s powerful book Wonderland: A Fairy Tale of the Soviet Monolith is back in print. The first edition sold out lickity-split, and I suspect these will as well.

    You can get it here: http://www.jasoneskenazi.com/wonderland.html

    The USSR was not only a vast closed territory with extensive geographical boundaries that stretched from Europe through Asia but is also a huge well of memory or dis-memory – a utopian vision that became a dystopian nightmare lasting nearly a century. The story of Communism is the story of the 20th century. For many, the Soviet Union existed, like their childhood, as a fairy tale where many of the realities of life were hidden from plain view. When the Berlin Wall finally fell so too did the illusion of that utopia. But time changes memory. The ex-Soviets confused the memory of their innocent youth for their nation’s utopian vision, unable to confront its history and thus creating nostalgia for tragedy. This book tries to seek and portray the socialist dream, the nightmare of the USSR beneath the veneer and the reality that emerged after the fall. And like all fairy tales try to teach us: the hard lessons of self-reliance.


    exactly…the problem with digi can be too fast self satisfaction…with digi , if you keep looking at the back of your camera, you keep going “backwards”…i see photogs who are “chimping” instead of taking more pictures…..with film you are forced to go forward forward always..sure it is nice to check your exposures, light balance, strobe coverage etc with digi…but, other than that, it is crazy to keep looking at the back of the camera if in any kind of great picture situation…

    best use of digi for me is what just happened to me less than an hour ago..i just came from a favela and had worked my way in with the guys with guns and drugs…they were pretty “hopped up” on something…a jittery kind of high…not the kind of high you really want with men holding guns…but, i had no choice (except to stay in my hotel)..in any case, having the digi camera to show them exactly what i was taking is simply perfect…they did not want their faces to show directly, so i was able to prove to them on the spot that i had followed their instructions…i always follow orders from men with guns…and always happy to leave with my cards and camera intact….downloading now.

    cheers, david

  • DAVID,

    I am just logging to the site every evening after work hoping to find your latest Twitter messages and to see what you are up to with this Rio assignment… It is a real pleasure to follow your path there and I have to say that I cannot wait to see what comes out of this trip….the fact that you think you “can nail this one to the wall” makes me even more eager and anxious to see the results….

    For those who want to have a feel for Rio while waiting to see your work, they may want to check out the images that Francesco Zizola did on the “beach culture” in Rio. Some real nice photographs and Francesco is a photographer from NOOR whose work I very much enjoy.


    Have fun in Brazil David!!!! Few of us who are stuck in a freezing cold winter in Europe would quite fancy being there….



  • David, good point about digital allowing you to show subjects the shoot as a means of gainging their confidence. You have mentioned before that you sometimes use a policy of not publishing a photograph unless both participants (photographer and subject) agree to publication. In your current situation, what would you do if you had what you consider to be a killer shot and the subject says “No”?

    Do you press delete or does it go into the archive? How do you explain to the subject that you want to keep the photo if you have promised not to publish it?

    When I shoot digital I don’t usually chimp. what’s the point if you are shooting street? either you have it or you missed it so you may as well wait until you download.


  • It will certainly be interesting to see what David has produced, however I’m afraid we won’t see the photographs until they’re published, which I assume will be many months. Also, it’s going to be illuminating to see how the photos DAH produces differ from other images we’ve seen from Rio, whether through photographers from agencies like Noor (see eric’s link above) or from films like City of God…

    from David, I’m imagining images which are truly Harvey-esque — low light, strong silhouettes, passion, color, depth — an echo of all his prior work from Cuba and the rap world… how can it not be? He’s DAH man!

  • MIKE R

    On my magnetic wall I have a print of what I consider one of the best photos I’ve ever taken…and I’m the only one who will ever see it. I took it in April 2008 when on a find-what-you-can-find shoot in an inner city Detroit neighborhood. It is a pic of 7 of the 23 children in front of the house where they lived with their mother and father. The mother gave me permission to shoot but when I returned with prints a couple of weeks later, the father said I could not use these photos anywhere. He was very nice and we had a wonderfully interesting talk, but he was very firm in his decision. It still makes me sad.


  • The digital camera=photographic crack? Hmmmmmmm…………

  • DQ – I wonder if we will see these images at all when the publication comes out… Thousands of photos and probably hundreds of great shots.. and maybe a hundred outstandingly exceptional shots that have to be edited down to the 10 or so in the story. I hope David is able to show us the “out takes” as they were – the ones not able to be published but still exceptional.

    Patricia, if we came to visit you, would we be able to see it?
    Thats so sad they say you can’t use it. However, there has to be a way to use such an image… I get all confused with the “ethics” of photography.

    For commercial a model release is needed.
    for art though? What about for journalism? If you’re on public property, side walk or street it’s ok to shoot and use the images unless it’s of a public figure, if on private property and permission is given to shoot, then aren’t they giving permission to use such images as well? Can’t you use it in a portfolio?

    Jim Powers – You’re an editor right? what is your position? anyone else?

  • Jason;

    If “in front of the house” meant they were on their (the owner/s) private property e.g lawn in front of house etc then I suppose the owner/s could pull the pin on the images. Maybe similar to the White Family story???

    I don’t want to put words in Patricia’s mouth but I don’t think she’s had many people ask not to have their photos taken for her Blue Mirror project? She probably just lucked out on this occasion; but of course Murphy’s Law dictates that it would be one of your best images!

    When I shoot in a bar (private property) I ask the owner’s permission out of courtesy of course, but also because it gives me the “right” to shoot there. Nothing in writing of course so I suppose legally it counts for nought! But better than nothing…

    I’m organising some times to shoot kids getting ready to go out (in their homes) so have promised to let them see and ok all images. I’m not sure whether I’ll go as far as model releases though.

    I was nervous when starting my kids project whether there would be any hassles shooting kids at the beaches, parks etc; but so far (touches wood for luck!) no hassles. But I also bring a ton of A4 documents with me to give to kids and/or parents describing the project, has links to images and all of my contact details.

    One UK photo library I sell images through are now asking for model releases for editorial images. This is a model release that stipulates the images will only be used for editorial purposes; not a general model release. They’ve only done this because they use US agents and don’t have as much control on final use. In other words; worried about getting their arses sued off! :-)

  • DAH,

    If you have the time before you return take the slow passenger ferry out to Niteroi. Kinda like the assignment you sent me on, only better. The terminal is right next to the city Airport. -Santos Dumont- The beach just below the Contemporary Art Museum has some rather exquisite vistas ;)

    Rio, e bom demais não é?

  • Jason, even if the photo had been taken on public property — which it wasn’t — I would still respect the father’s wishes not to show it publicly. It’s just the way things go sometimes. Fortunately, not often.

    And Ross is right, I’ve been lucky with the Blue Mirror project. Everyone who has agreed to be photographed has been fine with the idea of my using the photo online, in a book or in any way I choose. I haven’t even bothered with model release forms. And this includes the parents of children too. Of course I always ask permission first. If the parent isn’t there, I give my card to the adult who’s watching over the kids and ask that they give it to the parents with the instruction that the parents email or phone me if they have any questions or concerns.

    I do think people are comforted when they see my professional-looking business card. It gives them confidence that I am serious about my photography. It also gives them a way to see my work (on my website) and ways to reach me. From the start I’ve given a card to every person who has posed for this project. Most of them are strangers to me before I drag them off the street or wherever. I then invite them to email me and I’ll send them a copy of the photo by return email attachment. I’ve stayed true to that.

    By the way you can buy full-color reasonably-priced business cards at http://www.overnightprints.com/. I pay a bit extra for the heavier weight paper and have been very pleased. Maybe cards aren’t for everyone but they sure are helpful to me.



    I’ve just sent you another email regarding Martha Albuqerque. The subject is “update on Rio contact”


  • Ross and Patricia – Glad to hear the points of view you both have. As for card – I was shooting these kids climbing all over a soccer (football) net while their dad was playing across the field. I gave them my card and after his game they showed it to their dad and he just tossed it into the grass… So I went to talk to him to explain why I was shooting and he was fine with it… So they do work!

    Also – just before new years, I shot for the Harlem Globetrotters and they had us handing out these cards with the website and gallery number on it. and in tiny print – it has stipulations that by accepting the card, you’ve given permission to shoot and use the images. I feel that’s a bit sneaky, but all the person has to do is deny ever being handed one… I think in writing is the best way – but is such a hassle.
    What happens if the book is published and the person sues saying they didn’t want it printed in a book??

  • Jason, Ross, et al,

    There are the legal considerations, of course, but beyond that are the ethical and interpersonal considerations… one may have a ‘right’ to use a photo legally, but that doesn’t necessarily mean you should use it against the subject’s wishes, and especially not against a parent’s wishes if the subject is a child… it all depends on the context, of course. America and Britain tend to be very ‘legalistic’ societies where people are concerned with whether they have the ‘right’ or not to do something… a year and a half ago on ‘Road Trips’ there was a long discussion about the legalities, the ethics, and the karmic implications of getting the subjects’ permission to take and use photographs. You might want to go thru the archives and look that up… my personal position is, why would you want to create bad feelings and hostility towards yourself and other photographers by assering some ‘right’ that makes other people feel unhappy, uncomfortable, or threatened? Just because it’s a ‘great shot’? If you’re a newspaper or news magazine or wire service pj and it’s part of a breaking story or reportage, that’s another matter of course… and usually in that case there are fairly well defined guidelines for that. But for personal projects, I think you have to be a little more sensitive and considerate. For one thing, a lot of the general public may have mistaken ideas about what your ‘rights’ are, and you could end up beaten into a vegetative state by an irate mob (it happened to a Sacremento Bee photographer)…

    But, beyond that, I think there is a deeper implicit ethic in taking photographs.. most of what we photograph, whether people, events, or objects, are not things we have ‘made’ ourselves or ‘own’ ourselves or are responsible for ourselves… you can go on and on about the ‘creative vision’ of the photogrpaher, but most of our subjects are things we happened upon vicariously but actually ‘belong’ to other people… by entering into some kind of dance, social negotiation, relationship, mutual interaction- whatever you want to call it- with the subject (all of which I would define as part of ‘getting close’ to the subject), and then getting either tacit, implicit, or, where appropriate, explicit permission is part of being a reponsible social actor instead of being a predator, a thief, or a vampire. When, where, and how you do that… and how far you have to go… is different in every situation. That’s what being a photographer means, or should mean. I think that’s what DAH is alluding to when he says “good light, good composition, correct exposure… that’s the easy part of photography.”

  • Hi all,

    Can someone tell me if joint submissions (two photographers collaborating) to Burn and to The Burn Emerging Photo Grant are allowed?

    Ross: yes, once I learned to flirt with women here in Bucharest on the streets and to chill with the mafia things have been going much better for me. I was with my girlfriend last week, the photographer Aga Luczakowska, photographing peasants up at the Ukraine border and I learned a lot just from photographing alongside here–Aga approached people and shot lots of pictures sometimes when I hesitated a bit and didn’t shoot so much or at all. It was interesting to see how she photographs and what she found interesting and also how Aga interacted with people and then how our pictures differed when we got back here to Bucharest and looked at them onscreen.

    Nice links:


    and http://theindependentphotobook.blogspot.com/ just started up by Colberg of Conscientious: http://jmcolberg.com/weblog/2010/01/the_independent_photo_book.html#more

  • Dellicson,

    Aga is your girlfriend??? You lucky devil…. I don’t ever want to hear another complaint from you again, about anything!!!

  • “What happens if the book is published and the person sues saying they didn’t want it printed in a book??”

    Jason, if you let your subjects know ahead of time your plans/hopes/dreams for the project and they seem to be cool with it, that’s the best you can do. I guess there could be folks out there who might change their minds but I think that’s extremely rare. I wouldn’t lose any sleep over it. If we photographers treat our subjects with respect, chances are that’s what we’ll receive back from them.


  • Patricia – Great advice I think, Thank you!

  • Sidney;

    I would never use an image if I thought it was going to demean them etc. So yes I concur with you. I just try to treat others the way I would like to be treated when taking photos. I’ve been fortunate in that all the parents I’ve talked to are only too happy for me to photograph their kids because it’s a positive project.

    I also always have cards too, but carry a bunch of the A4’s permanently in my camera shoulder bag. It’s pretty hard to explain why you shooting over the racket of a heavy metal band, so the A4’s come in very handy!

    As for the interpersonal stuff; I always reckon the job description of a photographer is “professional waiter”. You spend 01% taking photos and 99.99% of the time waiting, (chatting, breaking the ice etc)!

  • I’m sure your own body language, openness, and ability to put people at ease are the most important aspects. It has also been the hardest for me to come to grips with, after only ever shooting nature. But I have found that people like the fact that someone is interested in their everyday life.

    I’ve been pleasantly surprised how willing people are to be photographed. I’ve also found that having a track record of published material is a help (not essential, but a help) because people tend to take you more seriously.

    I also think the ability to act like a bit of a goose and to be prepared to make a fool of yourself is a great ice-breaker too!

    I’m shooting kids most of the time and there are potential minefields. If no parents are present I always ask the kids to take the cards and A4 home and to tell their parents to contact me if they have any queries..

    But when you are in full view of people; or in my case often shooting while standing waist deep in a river or the sea, people can see that you’re pretty serious about the job in hand. It’s not as though you are hiding in the bushes with an overcoat, dark glasses, a pocket full of sweeties and a cell phone camera…..

  • Sidney Atkins:

    Aga, the great young Polish photographer is indeed my girlfriend. She just came and spent 2 weeks here with me in Bucharest (I was in Poland with her in November). She is now in the process of moving here to Bucharest to live with me.

  • Ross – I’m unfamiliar with a4’s… do you have an example you could email me please?
    Sidney & Ross, I totally agree – using defaming or de-meaning images are a discredit to the photographer… Unless the project is propaganda for a cause… but even still… using images in good taste is probably best.

  • Jason; Just an A4 sheet of paper with my letterhead and a project overview on it! :-)

  • david…
    your adventures

    **are you reading the tweets too Jim P?!?!?!?**


    thanks for the link to Zizzola beach culture story in Rio…nice work indeed…i have always been a fan of Francesco…i want to have some of that beach culture of course and the beach is indeed the melting pot for all classes in Rio…however, i do want to go beyond the beach culture and Zizzola must have done so as well…it is hard for me to imagine that he would only do this…in any case, and i think both of you can imagine, i am totally in my element…all the right stuff is here….but i have never seen so many armed people in my life, from the rich to the poor….everybody seems ready to go into combat or a firefight at any moment…yet, it is quiet..at least for the moment…and Rio is the friendliest place in general..a 24 hr a day fashion show…as an eclectic mix as you can imagine and, as everybody knows, bustling sexy Rio snugs into what has to be some of the most beautiful coastal geography on the planet…simply put, there is grist for the mill…the texture i love….yes, it will be awhile before you see this work….it will be quite awhile before i finish this work as well…ok, off to sleep…decisions to make…like, do i go back where i was yesterday with dealers/guns or quit while i am ahead??…there is always a better picture…..hmmmmmmm

    cheers, david

  • Dellicson

    “The Wall Street Journal has published its list of the 200 best and worst jobs in 2009. At the top of the list is Actuary with a top-level salary of $161,000 and software engineers, who can hope to earn $129,000. Photojournalists, on the other hand, are way down in that list, coming in 189th position with a starting salary of $16,000 and a top-level salary of $60,000.”

    One of my friends retired recently after working for the past twenty odd years as an Actuary. He indeed did make piss-pots full of money, but hated every minute of it. Last year was my worst year in more than twenty years as a photographer. I wish I had his money, but I wouldn’t dream of changing places with him.

  • a civilian-mass audience

    “As a rock on the seashore he standeth firm, and the dashing of the waves disturbeth him not. He raiseth his head like a tower on a hill, and the arrows of fortune drop at his feet. In the instant of danger, the courage of his heart sustaineth him; and the steadiness of his mind beareth him out.”

    Akhenaton quotes (King of Egypt, 14th century BC)

  • Gordon:

    Of course, of course. As DAH says, it is a challenge living the life one wants to live. Better to have an adventurous life with little money than to have a boring one with lots of it. . . although I cannot go on without some serious commercial work coming in right away now in the new year.

  • DAH:

    I haven’t been following everything: are you on assignment in Brazil??? or is it a personal project???

    I want to come visit you with my Aga, the polish photographer at some point in the next few months in New York. Will you be there? Is the loft still open?



  • DAH
    it must be strange to look at your own work from so long ago. it’s a very beautiful work none the less. love your grainy pictures ;)))

  • also wanted to share with the rest of the crowd a delightful page -collection of audio interviews with the fine photographers
    shared by a fellow photog on my facebook page today

  • Jeez David, every tourist with a point-and-shoot goes into the Favelas and takes snapshots of hopped-up, heavily armed drug dealers. Most people who go there probably don’t even know Rio has a beach. I’m sure pictures of it must be very rare. Personally, I’m hoping for at least a few shots that include horses. Not that I’d ever presume to tell you what to shoot. This is proving to be a great learning experience.

    Given all this access, I’m sure it will be a bit frustrating not to get to see anything for a long time, then very little at that. Perhaps when you wrap up shooting for this phase, you might consider giving a short, illustrative slideshow at the loft? Kind of a logical pedagogical wrap up to the entire enterprise. Probably not the way you work, I know. No criticism from me. I can’t express how much I appreciate what you’re already doing by taking us along on this job to the great, probably unprecedented, extent you already have.

  • a civilian-mass audience

    Philip Glass, Freezing

    Lovely weather in Greece…I am dancing with the octopus…
    Hmmm…Rio has a beach :)))
    JIM …Nice to see ya around…What not to love…

    i am dancing in the BURN… na,nanananannan
    I am singing in the BURN…oioiooiooiooooooooooooo
    i am drinking in the BURN…

  • CIVI,

    I’m dancing on one leg .. :)

    what not to love

  • On the 13th Day of Christmas, if there is such a thing…

    If you’re a kid, this is the most wonderful time of the year (or it was when I started this piece). First, there’s the anticipation of Christmas Eve and then the joy of Christmas itself, followed by a week off where you get to play with all of your new stuff. It’s a wonderful time for adults as well. The Christmas shopping season is over until Labor Day (or is it the Fourth of July? It’s very difficult to tell anymore) and the bills haven’t come in yet and everyone gets to sit back and relax for a bit. So life, at least for the moment, is good. Of course, the gifts the adults got are nowhere as interesting as the stuff the kids got, but then that’s just the way life works, isn’t it? Adults know that there is no right jolly old elf handing out free stuff on Christmas Eve, just other adults who have to pay for the merchandise. If all this sounds like I am being philosophical about the Christmas spirit of giving, it’s because I am. This year I got a tie and twelve pairs of boxer shorts.

    The tie is a very nice tie—it’s bright red with some kind of yellow design on it—but let’s face it, if a kid had gotten a tie and underwear for Christmas you’d be able to hear the screams of outrage from one end of our happy little burg to the other. Every kid knows that Santa keeps a list of who’s naughty and nice, and that according to the best evidence available he checks that list at least twice before the big giveaway on the 24th of December; the unspoken corollary to all this checking and rechecking is that if a kid has been going out of his way to be nice, the kid expects Santa to come across with some pretty damn good gifts or he can forget about the free milk and cookies next year. Kids can be remarkably unforgiving that way. They want great Christmas gifts, and ties and underwear are definitely not what kids have in mind when they come running down the stairs on Christmas Eve.

    When you’re an adult, of course, things are different, and I must admit that the boxer shorts intrigue me. Allow me to say here that no, I do not have an underwear fetish, for those of you filthy-minded enough to think such a thing. I do not believe that there is such a thing as a boxer fetish, in any case. Boxers are too plebian a garment to support the incredible weight of the erotic imagination, which tends to prefer the frillier foundation garments of attractive young women. The foundation garments of middle-aged men tend to be much less interesting. What makes these particular pairs of boxers interesting is their color. I now own multiple sets of dark green camouflage boxer shorts, complete with a rippled leaf effect. Other pairs feature skulls and crossbones, also with the same dark green rippled effect.

    I must tell you now that I regard the sudden militarization of my underwear drawer with no small degree of trepidation. I do not know right now what my policy should be in the event these new boxers attempt to extend their control from the underwear drawer to the sock drawer or, worse yet, should they attempt a violent overthrow of my tee-shirt drawer, which may lead to a destabilization of the world underwear order and the possibility of a conflict hitherto unheard of in the annals of underwear. Appeasement does not appear to be the right policy; we all know what ultimately happens to appeasing powers when they passively face an aggressor; but nothing in the boxers’ current behavior suggests that there is any immediate cause for alarm. There is merely a vague disquiet settling over this particular chest of drawers, a troubling disquiet similar to the psychic tension that haunted Europe in the years between 1933 and 1936.

    I must also tell you that I am not quite certain what the point of camouflaged underwear is in the first place. At a time when newspapers print photographs of US Marines fighting while wearing flak jackets, bathroom sandals, and IheartNY boxer shorts there would seem little need for camouflaged underwear at all, much less give several pairs to someone with as unmilitary a disposition as mine. The purpose of camouflage is, as I understand it, is concealment from people who are naturally, politically, or personally hostile to you. To achieve this admirable circumstance, nature and the world’s militaries do their best to blend into their natural surroundings. Given that underwear’s natural surroundings are under your trousers, hence the origins of the word underwear, the whole point of camouflaged boxer shorts would seem an exercise in inutility, if not just plain dumb. The wearer, of course, might choose to make use of the boxers’ camouflage effect by wearing the shorts on the outside of their pants, but this will cause chafing after a while, especially on a hot day, and the practice does tend to lead to political and social upheaval in Central America, a tragic and for most part unforeseen consequence that the American political philosopher Allen Konigsberg first pointed out in the early 1970’s.

    I suppose that one could argue, and some people will, if only for the hell of it—some people are like that— that one might use camouflaged boxer shorts in order to confuse any passing sexually transmitted diseases and thereby escape their notice unscathed, but as the wearer of camouflaged boxer shorts is seldom wearing said boxers when the passing sexually transmitted diseases actually pass, this argument seems a bit weak, if not positively foolish. Many of the other proposed arguments also seem flimsy when held up to examination. The use of such underwear in deer hunting, for example, founders on some of the same reasons that limit the boxers’ military utility. Deer have little or no color vision; they cannot even see the bright orange hunting jackets the law requires hunters to wear here in the Vampire State; and they have no X-ray vision at all, rendering the point of camouflaged underwear moot. Camouflaged underwear might, in theory, be of some use in certain situations, but when such situations depart from the realm of theory and enter that of the quotidian it is almost always the result of excessive beer consumption and often concludes with some dumbass falling out of the tree their hunting stand is in (no, it wasn’t me, and no, this part of the story is not apocryphal). Now, your average American white-tailed deer is not the brightest bulb in the animal kingdom, but they are intelligent enough to know that seeing a beer sodden human being falling out of a tree in the middle of the forest is not at all a good sign, whatever the color of his boxer shorts, and that the best way to extend their chances of living to a ripe old age is to scram, split, and otherwise vamoose in as expeditious a manner as possible. The camouflaged boxers might hide our gravity challenged hunter from a crew of searching paramedics, but I think the low moans interrupted every so often with long bursts of profanity would probably negate the ripple leaf effect of the underwear. Actually, I think the swearing would be a dead giveaway, but you never can tell; stranger things have happened, you know. Did I mention that the tie is red?

  • I asked for, but did not receive, boxer shorts for Christmas. I’m glad that my old ones are still serviceable, because it’s too cold around here to go commando.

  • ..boxers (as in boxer shorts) are sexy.. I must ponder now if camouflaged ones are as well, never thought of it.. hmmm..

  • a civilian-mass audience

    Boxers …no idea…:)))

  • Justin, Eva; who needs boxers??? Now this IS sexy….. :-)

  • a civilian-mass audience


    ROSSYYYYYYYYYYYYY…you are daman…

    i am still waiting…shall I buy boxers instead …???

    SHOOT …shoot …shoot …I MISS YOU ALL and I love u allllllllllllll

  • Ross

    Whew, I’m glad we’ve got that cleared up.

  • Gordon; Now I’ve sorted that out, does it put me in line for a Nobel Peace Prize too??? :-)

  • a civilian-mass audience

    please take photos of your broken leg…
    what did I tell you…if there is one that he can pull an essay…
    that one will be you, my everyday MAN…!!!

    BURNIANS… you are all top of the line , AAA , golden hearts…BRAVO MR.HARVEY…
    and from the BEST …I am waiting …only the BEST…DAHY included…
    not me…I am just a civilian…hihihihi

    THANK YOU …keep it up…
    KATIE…check e-mail…
    I got to go back to work …
    BUT I will not leave you (alone)…not yet …cause the BAR HAS BEEN RAISED…long time ago …

    LOVE and hugs… and pics…I am dancing one one leg…just for support…PLEASE DONATE…

    P.S MR.HARVEY…easy…you haven’t visit Greece yet…Danger is what we breath…
    I better stop before the Greeks( PANOS,THODORIS,VASILIOS…come and trash me!!!)

  • ROSS,

    That’s great! Love where he’s riding the bus next to the lil’ ol’ lady :-)

  • Ross

    Your application is in the mail.

  • DAH,
    i’m glad you returned to Brasil (and sincerely hope this could lead soon to a revisit to Portugal) and wishing you a great stay and lots of first-rate photos, places and people to remember…

    and all,
    as an example of another recent work at Rio (i already mentioned it before but present circumstances, and a new link, make it more engaging…) go see ‘Violence in Rio de Janeiro’ by João Pina, at http://www.joao-pina.com/features/violencerio/ he’s a young (born in 1980) portuguese photographer now based in Buenos Aires, Argentina. i recommend to also check his site for other features, tearsheets (more from Rio and São Paulo) and archive.
    um forte abraço para todos,
    Carlos Filipe

    ps. just as a side note (to DAH being in Rio), there’s also a Christ statue in Lisbon, akin ‘the Redeemer’ in Corcovado/Rio de Janeiro, since it was covered by fog in my bridge picture/burn cover at burnians…

  • Carlos

    Thanks for the Pina link. Fantastic stuff.

  • Ross that was hilarious! togs togs togs togs undies undies… hehe

  • I’m sure Igor Posner has a future as “an important photographic artist.” The intelligentsia will ooh and ah over the gritty honesty of his blury, fuzzy, grainy, dark images. Every photographer with a Leica will load up with some pushed 3200 film and try to produce the same “unique” images for a generation to come.

    Come on, folks. It’s just depressing peering into his mind as expressed though these grindingly depressing photos. Does the photographer really see life this way? Do you folks really see life this way? Photographers seem to love this kind of stuff. The more depressing, the more fuzzy, the more contrasty, the more grainy and badly exposed the better. It’s become little more than a cliched device. Good grief.

  • Jim. I think the work is very good. Its certainly impressionism, but is that a crime now? Must we remain purists? As an interpretive piece, and with the music, it took me on a tour through the world as the artist wanted me to see it. It takes a lot of skill to get that many images working that well together at the extremes of exposure. You dont have to like it, but dont underestimate the skill it took to make. Its not just a bunch of grab shots thrown together with a bit of music.


  • I didn’t say it wasn’t skillful. I’ve seen incredibly skillfully done sand castles, too, but they are gone with the next wave.

    This “look” is a device, a gimmick. And a common one. Even if skillfully applied.

  • Well said, John. I too was struck by the technical skill. I’ve got a special dislike for would-be art that attempts to inhabit that dark place and fails. I think Igor’s work gets it right.

    And Jim, although I don’t see life like that anymore, I have seen it that way. It’s a grand old tradition for young people to be alienated from bourgeois society to wallow in existential angst. That feeling seeps from the stones of old Europe and many a young person has walked those streets and felt those feelings. They can also be accessed through the novels of Dostoevsky, Kafka and the like. I’d ask you Jim: have you never read and enjoyed that tradition in European literature? Granted, it’s not for everybody all the time, but one should be able to recognize its value.

  • On the other hand, and I haven’t quite worked out my thinking on this, there’s something a bit unsettling about seeing that kind of skill and creativity used to illustrate a 19th century novel. Is that all it is? I don’t think so, but the title says otherwise. As I said under the main essay, I’d like to see him come up with something more original. “Notes from the Underground” is already taken.

  • I’m not a fan of existential angst. Just because young people wallow in it doesn’t mean we should encourage it. Or that most folks want to see it.

  • Isn’t it funny that we all knew Bob B would love Igor’s essay and Jim P would hate it?

    As for myself, Igor’s essay makes me reevaluate my own recent work and I must admit it comes up looking pretty shallow in comparison. I experienced such soul in Igor’s essay, not his personally as much as the soul of his city. It makes me want to find a subject that touches a deep nerve within myself, one that sets up a resonance with all that I have experienced in my life. I am indebted to Igor for making me dissatisfied with staying on the surface of things. It’s time to let down the anchor and dive deep.


  • The problem, Patricia, is that what he has captured is his own warped view of the city. It doesn’t look like that, you know. He simply found the darkness that is everywhere and used technique to make it appear even more sinister. While his vision may contain some truth, this work is essentially a fiction. An art piece.


  • Jim;

    I respect your opinion but I’m often left wondering what you think we should shoot (and how).

    A; Humanitarian stories in B&W= Done before, won’t make a difference.

    B; Too arty, too grainy, too dark, too introspective, don’t shoot Walmart it’s boring, too much PS,

    What would you rather people shoot? I have asked the question before but never received a reply. God forbid we end up shooting Photo.net kittens, dogs! :-)

    Regarding “This “look” is a device, a gimmick. And a common one. Even if skillfully applied.”

    Couldn’t you say the same about the “creamy bokeh” portrait shots that proliferate (& newspapers are the worst culprits)? This “look” is a device, a gimmick. And a common one that is often skilfully applied! :-)

    When it comes down to tin tacks, every technique is a device, unless you want to shoot with a standard lens. Even then it is only an image from the photographer’s perspective.

    Maybe my eyesight isn’t too hot but I have never seen a “creamy bokeh” in “real life”, just as much as I have never seen slow synch flash or ultra wide angle. Well maybe after too many beers but I don’t think that counts…. :-)

    If I “see” real life in B&W then I will quickly visit the optician…..


  • I really liked the essay, and I’m certainly not an introverted teenager!

  • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ew0Hs7-hX6E
    morning.. only -7 degrees today.. sunny outlook

  • funny but i find perfection the cliche, with all the soul ripped right out of it, like perfect suburbs and housewives and neatly trimmed desperation …
    … give me the imperfect squint eyed gritty down in the gutter fighting scratched clawed moments of true perception seen heard tasted smelled FELT from corner glimpses of a head quickly turned with no answers.

  • hi guys…

    it is so hard to catch up with all this talk and already more than a few essays up… where i left off was the map.. that most beautiful birthday map of burn and the rest of the world. thanks lassal and haik!

    and then this:
    talk of all our imperfect lives being a perfected cliche.

    i must say what is most catchy here on burn is DAH’s fortitude and acumen in writing these short essays that provoke mind and emotion and fuel inspiration. DAH i feel your loss and send you my love because nothing replaces a valued friendship (and yes it was more than that) and i always will dread the time when i say i wish i could have told him this and i wish i had more time.

    where i have been has been more important than photography. ive been with my family so that i would not wish i had more time to tell them what ive always wanted to say. ive stayed away enough to recharge and get me back to where i left off.

    so to all my special friends on burn, especially my night duty smithsonian guards: civi, katiecakes and panos, have a loaded blessed safe and healthy 2010!!

  • i think the best anyone can hope from a photographer is that they successfully convey their world in their way.. there are plenty of snappers photographing ¨everything¨ within the confines of certain choices and styles..
    only so many notes on a piano and all that..
    yet different tunes arise from different perspectives and igor has without question succeeded in taking us down his own road in a piece which is both biographical and impressionistic.. succeeded in realizing as closely as possible his minds eye.

    personally i could not care less whether someone chooses to play pop, jazz, ragga or dubstep..
    i´m certain none of the styles in themselves are ´cliche´, and i don´t think a particular style of photography can be called cliche either… individual works can fail.. certain contexts can smell of ripe cheese.. yet not a whole movement in photography.
    that´s just ridicules.

    .. and again..
    who of us has the foresight to say what will fall into the sea like castles made of sand?
    i can here your voice echo in the guilded halls of the past jim..
    ¨that mozart will go no where.. far too ¨poppy¨.. and beethoven must lighten up – such cliched darkness.¨

  • welcome back gracie :)
    happy, happy new year – hoping we will be able to click your name and see some snaps sooon..

  • Jim, I think he’s tapping into it’s history. and the darker history of Russia and the U.S.S.R…
    just read this – a snipit from that link you kindly provided “The city was built by conscripted serfs from all over Russia and also by Swedish prisoners of war.” Just tell me that isn’t a dark gritty story.

    Patricia, I know exactly what you mean! I had worked on a project a few months ago – This is what I envisioned. I was going to try to create my own story of totalitarian society drawn off of such books as A Clockwork Orange, Fahrenheit 451, The Giver, and films like Metropolis, Equilibrium and other sources… I ran into problems finding actors and locations. I will revisit the idea another time after some more research.

  • Ok guys, I rethink everything and I agree with Jim!

    Did you see pictures on Corbis website?
    There is a thousands photos of food full of colors, bright, just shiny! Food, cars, houses, streets, offices.

    And I found many pictures of families.
    How happy they are! They mostly white, blond, pretty, almost always smiling, embrace, they love each other!
    Have you seen they houses?
    Full of light, clean, mostly white and big!
    And this children?
    Wow, wow, wow!
    I want two of this little white blond smiling angles!

    I want live in world of photographers from Corbis!
    And I will.
    I will take only bright full of colors, correctly exposed pictures of young pretty people and their pretty children playing on green juicy grass in park.

    I feel convert!!
    Fallow me!!
    I will save you all!
    Let hold my hand I will take you to the better place!
    Good exposed place!
    New world is coming!
    Who is with me!

    ok… exhausted for now!
    but the better me will back!

    peace and love for everyone!

  • a civilian-mass audience


    are you ok??? Why you don’t sit down and have a drink or something…
    CORBIS or no Corbis …there will be always one…hihihii:)))

    ahhhhh…where have you been …my darling lost one…???
    MyGRACIE…thank you …we were talking about you with KATIEEEEEE, the Street Fighter…
    She told me to kiss you and Hug you like there is no tomorrow…
    and yes we talked about …families…THE FAMILIES …and

    YES, BURN is our BIG koukou Family …where the “truth” is always somewhere in the middle…
    and there is no truth …DAVIDB…don’t click my name…you will get only silents …:)))

    P.S Did I say I love u ???

  • Civi,

    I’m fine, just teasing.


    Must say I am with Jim but only if we talking about press photography. I see everywhere young pj photographers who try to take pictures like from Berman’s films. Shiny day? No, dark hell…
    Press photography should be without manipulation and what is the different between coled rockets or making bright day to night?
    But this is my opinion.
    And of course I am not PJ so I can do whatever I want :)

    so everything is dark :)

  • patricia, David bowen. isnt it fantstic though when you see some work that makes you go “SHIT, now I have to really raise my game”. Isnt that how we grow as artists?
    I dont know about the rest of you but to me its a constant competition, against all of you but mainly against my owm limitations. Its not, I feel, a popular stance in photography circles but then who does photography to be popular? Or to fit into a circle?


  • a civilian-mass audience

    Yes, JOHN …everything is dark …when someone does photography just to fit into a circle or to be popular!!!

    What not to be proud of you !!!

    constant competition …BURNing like a Rio girl in a HOT undies…
    MARCIN… you such a teaser…:)))
    JIM …I am always a fan …
    2010 …looks very promising…even with one leg…right THOMAS???!!!

    I am gonna call MR.HARVEY… the TWEETY DAH…

    P.S Oime …Did I say I LOVE you today ???

  • Well, one thing is for certain, channelling the darkest side of 19th century Russia will get you accolades from Burn photographers.

  • DAVIN…

    i have always invited you to my loft…yes, bring Aga….if i am not there, you may stay..the Burn Hotel is available by special requests…i will be on a very heavy shooting schedule all through the spring and summer…first with Rio, then with a personal story on the Outer Banks (opposite of Rio) and my American family work…Rio is an assignment now for Natgeo, but surely i will continue beyond and do a book i think…i could change my mind on this, but a Rio book just seems like a natural for me…i love the name…RIO…can just see it in type…bold..

    cheers, david

  • Hi everyone…. First breakfast in Thailand:


    (I think I screwed big with the PS color edit, but these are this morning papers, fer sure!)


    every tourist with a point and shoot has probably photographed everything there is on the planet…should that keep me from taking a look myself? however, there sure as hell are no tourists with point and shoots in the neighborhoods where i am working..i cannot even imagine it…please send me a link to these tourist photos you have seen of guns, drugs, in the favelas

    the main this is this…i am giving you a day by day diary of my working schedule, my thinking at the moment etc ..i reserve the right to change my mind, change my plan, have no plan, etc etc…you have seen nothing of my final results or final thinking process…i have just been working exactly one week..one week for me is nothing….just a chance to get my feet just a bit wet….my work always takes time…watching one slice of it, may not at all represent the whole..

    one thing i do notice on the net is that everyone immediately jumps to some kind of conclusion based on a piece of the process…as if a piece was IT….whatever i am doing in Rio with not be resolved for a year….in any case, i hope you will sit back , relax, enjoy the process, and reserve judgments for judgment day which is when the book comes off the press….


  • Jim:

    really, you have to look wider in your photographic resources…

    Igor is a friend, a dear friend, but even if he were not i would appreciate his work. I spent alot of time talking with igor long ago and shit, i remember when he was making ‘non-igor’ pictures with a digi camera. he did his homework. he asked me how i made my pics look the way they do (with trix and rodinal and certain other things), he asked me about my photographic philsophy and he looked looked looked at other’s work. of course he studied frank and peterson and moriyama and d’agata and ackerman…in fact, he ended up meeting michael and many of his early pictures are almost exact replica’s of michaels, unfortunately…but he was searching for his voice. as i told him years ago, ‘style’ is not Owned BY ANYONE…not his style not michael’s style not antoine’s style…

    if u look at ackerman’s Fiction, is was all there before, the style, the mood, the light, the grain…but…before ackerman there were others…my fear for Igor, as i ahve told him before, is that he needs to get away from Michael’s shadow and make his own story, his own pictures….and to me, Petersburg has done this….igor is a very very sensitive man and a thoughtful man…

    photography comes from the soul, the heart, the head….pictures come from a camera….

    it has been a pleasure to see Igor develop into a thoughtful and soulful photographer…

    and by the way, i didnt like Notes from Underground only because it was done by a friend or because it was looks like my style of photography but because it is beautiful and thoughtful and, above all, has a voice….

    here’s the work of michael to help out your historical perspective



  • Well, one thing is for certain, channelling the darkest side of 19th century Russia will get you accolades from Burn photographers.

    No, it has to be channeled convincingly. And unless I missed something, Igor’s essay wasn’t presented as photojournalism. Fiction is not a bad thing in and of itself. There are more things in heaven and earth, Jim, than are dreamt of in your photojournalism.

    David, I was wondering if you found much, if any, religious element among the criminals in the Favelas. An interesting part of the Vargas Llosa novel concerns Brazilian criminals’ odd relationship with religion. And conversely, religion’s odd relationship with them

  • Ha, I guess we were writing at the same time. Sorry David, I thought it was obvious I was joking about the tourists. As a general rule, if something I write is so jaw-dropping ludicrous, it’s most likely some poor attempt at a joke (though not always, alas). Point was that the oft-photographed beach is the last thing I’m interested in seeing in photography from Rio (religious processions excepted). Not that you shouldn’t shoot it if you like, just sayin that I find the Favela work far more compelling.

    I wasn’t joking about the horses though. I’ve noticed you seem to have an affinity for them and have produced some of the best photographs of them that I have ever seen. Is that a story element you look for in all your shoots or does it just come about naturally?

    regards, michael

  • Re-reading your last comment, which was apparently addressed to me… I want to stress that I have no negative criticism of anything you are doing. I offer no advice. I have jumped to no conclusions. I am nothing but grateful for what you are doing. I can see how comments and questions from the peanut gallery might dissuade you from this kind of openness in the futre, so I will happily do as you suggest. sit back and enjoy the process. This is an incredible learning experience and I can’t adequately express how much I appreciate it.


  • BOB…

    well reasoned comment to Jim…thanks…we share a broad view of appreciation and eclectic styles etc…i have never understood why artists of one style may reject the work of others doing something different…or why some may be so set on a particular set of standards, that may indeed be applicable to the press, and yet apply those standards to EVERYTHING…in any case, your suggestions for Jim, and perhaps others, have great merit…by the way, i am a big Ackerman fan…


    even if you were being critical , i would not mind…i come from a world of very tough critique and use tough critique with my students and my colleagues….i did not realize you were joking, but perhaps i would have if i was not reading so quickly..again, the foibles of the net and this medium…i was even thinking later that if a visitor to Rio thought they could just run up to the favelas and shoot these drug dealers, then great harm could come to them….so my caption for this work is the old “do not attempt this stunt at home”…in any case, i always enjoy your comments here and please feel free to question anything that i do…i question myself all the time!! if i write a rejoinder , it is simply intended as part of the discussion, and your comments are never considered affront…

    cheers, david

  • ……….all part of the general paranoia on the net http://www.iamparanoid.net/

  • john:

    “I dont know about the rest of you but to me its a constant competition, against all of you but mainly against my owm limitations.”

    Yes, most definitely, and more than against others (this just serves to push), much much more against myself.. expanding vision constantly, in every direction possible..

  • David :))

    indeed…i’ve never understood how/why other photographers pigeon-hole themselves. i mean, interesting photography just speaks so personally to me and it doesnt matter the style/story, camera, philosophy. I mean Sally Mann’s “Proud Flesh” is just devastating and so is Goldberg’s “Open See” and so is Monica Haller’s book on Iraq and Rob Hornstra’s book and even Verst’s (marina’s) and ‘ordinary things’ (mine) (both still waiting for a publisher ;))))) )…the thing is that great work, no matter the genre.approach.philosophy.style.country is just so inspiring…alec s has it right…and one of the most (for me) beautiful things y ou’ve ever said (here at burn) was when u wrote that everytime you see work you like, no matter what, it’s like seeing photography for the first time…me too….anyway, stay safe, especially in the favella…and on your return trip, maybe you and miriam can meet….she;ll be both a good subject and give you access to both those words (favella and aristrocracy), though i know you’ve got that already….stay safe!

    igor was inspired by michael (who by the way is a great human being as well) and michael was inspired by Jem (cohen) and peterson and frank and literature….i mean imagine the day when Vu had ‘D’agata and Ackerman and Pin-fat and Blekinsop….and with time, almost the Blacks, but then everything changed….


  • a civilian-mass audience

    ahhh…”the foibles of the net and this medium…” how well we all know…
    how many times…even my civilian comments …have been lost in translation…
    but …I promise…when you will drink from my homemade pomegranate juice…

    everything will be all right …(I just want to see reactions…)
    VIVA !!!

  • All,

    I put three photos together : http://marcinluczkowski.com/photonews/levels.jpg
    1. how world looks when I took this picture.
    2. how world looks in my mind (should looks more dark just like Armageddon but I don’t know how do it with this picture)
    3. How this picture should looks if I could change it and my mood right now.

    I am glad that we have a free will and we can do pictures like we wish.

    the diversity enrich of the evolution.


  • DAH,
    if you read this, pls contact me via Skype … I have a contact in Rio for you whom you might find interesting – if you two get along, he can open you a lot of doors. But maybe that is now a little too tight timewise? Just let me know.

    As to horses … there is the Joquei Clube (Hipódromo da Gávea), where they do horse races and betting … It is right next to the Jardim Botânico :)

  • Bob

    thank you for articulating some of what I was feeling; I have not left a comment under underground tho I have watched it 3 times and will return, and I anticipate his coming work…I feel the sensitivity that you speak of and I am struggling to phrase my reaction to the work in a way that honors that sensitivity…the Ackerman aspect was disturbing me as much as it excited, and I find in underground some pure sourced excellence and I see certain images that are pitch perfect (such paintings to study!) and I feel the original voice in many, but there are parts of the piece I wish would break away or anchor more into the core of Igor…but I am watching the snow fall now and mostly I am reminded that we are family, backwards in time family but also now, laterally, and as much as I resonate with john g’s sentiment of a personal need to excel, I also feel a tremendous comfort both in Igor’s achievement which is real and great, and in his struggle to fully realize his personal vision and not independent from the lineage but in addition to it. It is unfair of me to want Igor to be complete in mastery -right now- but I find I always seek the same from those for whom it is possible.

  • john..
    bang on.. who does this to be popular or ^fit in^.. if anything it makes one something of an outcast by nature.

    what i like about work such and igor and our bob produces is that it forces me to, as you say, adjustr my perception.. i´m not about to run out and begin photographing in a different way – i can only work the way i enjoy working and i have never wanted to be anyone else..
    it makes me look at what i shoot in a broader way.. view past work with fresh eyes.. and of course it inspires us to work on.

    i understand what you mean about internal competition.. and a little of the disappointment we all feel, which dah expressed recently and which i chated with another friend about only a few days ago..
    if we´re really working critically for ourselves i´m not certain satisfaction is the result.. there is always a nagging doubt.. always a nervous anticipation of looking at the films and then always a slight sinnking feeling when the last snap of the last roll has been seen.

    personally – i hope this competition with myself never ends, and from talking with and reading you regarding your work, and many others here regarding theirs, that this is a common belief..

  • And what do you think about photography WITHOUT the real world?
    Soon what is real will be not as sure as before.

    where the imagination is start and the real world is end?

  • What is real and what isn’t? And, does it really matter?

  • David – Thank you again for doing this! I love the updates – It answers questions I’ve had with the kind of stories you work with. thank you!
    And when you’re all done I look forward to talking to you about school.
    Please be safe with those guns! I don’t remember you telling us anything about handling one during the Living Proof book.

    Lets also talk about possibly running a Burn show here… I live right above a Gallery and I know the owner quite well.

    as my mate al says – no one drop anything.. it looks like the country might shatter into a million peaces..

    with love from -7 in norskwayland

  • Erica :)))

    no need to worry. igor IS STILL GROWING…he’s a really intelligent and thoughtful and kind person…it is true that much of his visual vocabulary is defined but what michael has achieved over the last 15 years…and as i try to tell him often (in private emails) the key for Igor will be to find his own voice, his own visual vocabulary…because it does rest soooooo mucgh on michael’s vision, including shooting similar places and in similar manner, but petersburg hyas some amazing photographs and igor is friends with michael now and michael is so big-hearted that he isn’t threatened…just as i wasnt threatened when igor asked me long long ago about technical questions on film, development, relationship, reason…we ALL SHARE THE SAME idea, in truth, all photographers, like family, are simply searching fo a way to tell the story inside the bubble of our hearts…as igor develops a fully posner way, he’ll cut himself loose…the key for igor will be when he doesn’t worry about making his pictures look a certain way but in stead, shooting how he sees the world…and petersburg gets closer to that than any of his earlier work in LA or Tijuana or Italy which was basic replications of michael and antoine…but he is one of the most sensitive, kind thought people i know…and maybe if people love igorn’s story (i do hope so), they will also discover the visionary that lead the way, that was Michael…and before michael the films of Jem and Adam cohen, the work of Teru (who fell in love with photography by meeting/befriending michael)…etc…

    then they;’ll find Oli (pin-fat)’s work and maki and jukka onella and idalina etc etc…my role here, i hope, always has been both as a supporter and lver of phtoography, but i hope as a way to offer a wider swallowing :)))…to back up what david shows…:))

    but, you should never be worried about expressing your reservations about the work…

    nor being afraid to say that Michael was the original, full stop…and still rhymes beautifully..

    we’re all in this world as a family together…it all fits together :))

    hugs, running


    Greetings from this fragile coil called Britain, apart from the constant threat of the land exploding into a thousand pieces, we are having a great time, the kids off school, trying to find a hill in Norfolk to sledge down has been a bit troublesome. An extended christmas.

    Normal for Norfolk -5 to -8


  • 3. How this picture should looks if I could change it and my mood right now.


    Couldn’t agree more Marcin.

  • Herve
    Yes I do like green eggs and ham

  • Bob,
    probably I missed something in the earlier posts. Which Michael are you refering to?
    thank you for the hint to Dostoevski’s crime and punishment!
    Lee Guthrie,
    yes, Russia can be scary and I am not sure if I would want to live there, but it is a great country with great people. If you ever have a slight chance of going there. Please go. Igor’s view is just one view. Valid, but just one view. Russia is big and it looks totally different in summertime. Can’t wait to get back… Oh boy, better not think of all the Vodka again… I have to find a good excuse for not drinking…

  • Reimar:


    Ackerman.. Michael that is.. if you can get a hold of ‘Endtime City’ or ‘Fiction’..

  • Yes I do like green eggs and ham


    Came out even worse than I thought….

  • I really have no idea if the favelas are part of the new trend of tourism, called slum tourism. Ie. local agency/tour guides taking people to slums and garbage dumps, in group.

    Maybe that is why Michael was hinting about.

    Gosh, 2h50 am, been going on since 9am this morning, shot quite a lot last night, and still not a trace of jet lag… Too much aDAHrenaline? :-))))

  • Nope Herve, if you are referring to this Michael, it was a joke and nothing but a joke.

  • a civilian-mass audience

    BURNIANS…look what I found in the facebook…


    one lady SARA TERRY needs help…

    and please don’t forget to help …our kibbutz too…
    BURNIANS …just a small help …can be a big one…if we all can do it…
    Because at the end … WE ARE ONE…!!!

    goodnight from civi

  • Eva,
    thank you for the link. I never heared of Michael Ackermann. Strong work and I see the connection to the current essay by Igor.
    To find a new vison that is absolutely unique – very difficult – almost impossible. No idea who is walking in whose footsteps. It doen’t really matter to me. Glad to discover Michael’s and Igor’s approach to photography!
    Just the other day I came across a nice book by Richard Renaldi which is called “Figure and Ground”. This is something that fascinates me and I like his way of taking pictures.
    We all have our little influences here and there and we can only hope that we come up with something that we can truly call a personal vision…
    Guess I am far from it, but I am on my way which is the most important thing.
    Heavy snow in Europe. Drive and walk safely!

  • DAH:

    What is evident from your tweets and from your posts here is the lengths you go to on an assignment/project–your passion and obsession comes through!!!



  • I live here in the center of Bucharest, I mean really in the center, and yet I hear a rooster at all hours of the day, not more than 100 meters from my apartment. . . Romanians tell me that during Communism recently relocated peasants often kept farm animals in apartments. . .

  • pierre yves racine

    On “not making anyone lose face”…

    I totally agree with you on this David and I will have to disagree with you John saying that “Some people deserve to lose face and be compromised.”

    Who would deserve that ? To which end and for what purpose ?

    Ok, a “victim” could feel avenged and better after making somebody lose face but that would not help by any mean to durably solve a situation.

    This does not mean that you wouldn’t tell somebody that you disagree on something. But making somebody lose face doesn’t help in the end.

    On this problem one can read Hannah Arendt’s analysis on judging the Nazis.. fascinating !

    Sorry for jumping on this a bit late and out of context but it struck a chord.

    Thanks David for taking the time to write about your experiences on the field. So great to read about concrete things !


  • Pierre Yves:

    It is not about “feeling better”. It is about the arrogant being less arrogant.

  • DAH

    I am worried about these guns..the company you’re keeping..yikes..you ARE made of flesh and blood, whether you know it or not. damn…you really know how to stress a woman out..but guess that’s not news to you..


    This man needs a Novena. Or two. And i’m not even religious. Trying to remember my Hail Mary, Holy Mary’s. DAH needs all the protection he can get.

    yes, i got your e-mail..very upbeat..cheery..thank you, thank you..i just got back to CR..both kids there to greet me. I can’t tell you how special that was!

    goodnight all..including DAH’s guardian angel. And that’s not a joke. sheesh, man.


  • a civilian-mass audience


    hmmmm…where is our tweety ???
    KATIEEE …you rock my lady…and yes, MR.HARVEY needs protection…hmmm…I don’t know which one…
    he definitely needs something…
    he is a true BURNIAN …that means …he has brain …so,all he needs is a rooster and 2 eggs,
    sunny side up …everything Organic…

    P.S making coffee…
    keep rocking …keep shooting…keep donating…keep having intercourse …
    keep dreaming…keep working hard…keep it up…even keep loosing face…
    I see no problem with that …cause after I have to re-invent myself…
    okkk…I know …coffeeeeeeee time…

  • Referring to what Herve (hope he survived the green food!) was writing about:

    “I really have no idea if the favelas are part of the new trend of tourism, called slum tourism. Ie. local agency/tour guides taking people to slums and garbage dumps, in group.”

    and even if what Michael Webster wrote before, kicking off Herve’s response, was only a joke, reading postings by pro’s like this one:


    and the comments of DAH about security and safety leave me wonder, and ponder… ethics and the respect towards those in front of the lens..

  • joseph colligan..

    sneeking in a post there quietly, eh?
    really enjoyed your by night photos..

  • EVA

    Thank you for bringing up the subject of ethics regarding our life as photographers, especially those of us who work professionally as photojournalists. Andrea Pistolesi brings up important questions, questions that are raised every so often here on Burn and on Road Trips before this.

    Intent is the unspoken, often unacknowledged force behind everything we do, not just as photographers but as human beings. It is the “elephant in the room” that determines how we work and how our photos are perceived by others. All too often we have failed to examine our intent, the WHY of our essays and individual photos, while we focus exclusively on the WHO, WHAT, WHERE and HOW of accomplishing our work.

    Why have we chosen this subject and why are we pursuing it in the particular ways we are? Are we thinking of the end product more than the ethics of how we get there? Do we see a benefit coming to the people who live the lives we are photographing, or are we simply taken with the drama and chance to take great photos? Each of us individually has to answer to ourselves because the world is often looking for the most dramatic image we can give them.

    Again, thank you, Eva, for introducing this subject for discussion. It is always important to look at why we do what we do.


  • Patricia:

    yes, the ever recourring ‘question’: it’s all about me.. which, in my eyes, is wrong, and that’s not limited to photography only.

    Another interesting read here:


    It’s also easy to jump to conclusions, really hard to judge without knowing personally anybody.. I guess you’re right, it’s up to ourselves to look within ourselves, first and foremost.

  • The corollary, and this is what bothers me most, is representing people and places as they exist within our own heads (or hearts), not as they really exist. The current essay, as I have noted, is a dark representation of a Russia past. Taken alone, it gives the impression that St. Petersburg is a dark, depressing, angry place filled with prostitutes, drug addicts and alcoholics. Danger lurks around every dark, fuzzy, grainy corner.

    For this fiction he has created, he has received extensive accolades here. And while he has become very experienced and skilled at making what he points his camera at dark and ominous, in the end he has created a fiction, a misrepresentation of reality. We find out little about the real city, and too much about the the real photographer.

  • As for David and his tweets, I continue to be concerned that they could easily make him a target in the real place he is in now. A dangerous experiment in my opinion.

  • but jim….
    isn’t that ok?
    Its his story to tell,
    clearly your story on the same city would be different….
    Igor did an amazing job telling his story….
    why do you insist on all story telling to be the same?
    to follow the same formula?

  • Jim, photography IS fiction. If you are not interested in a photographer’s subjective take on a subject, you might as well tap security-camera footage to see what a place really looks like. You seem to believe that there is a Platonic ideal to be photographed, not the shadows on the wall of the cave. St. Petersburg, like any other city, has its darkness. No one, not even Igor, is saying that St. Petersburg is merely a place of grainy drug addicts. Fiction is not a misrepresentation of reality. Haven’t you read a novel?

  • Jim Powers,

    “Fiction” seems to be a pejorative, even damning label to you… I don’t understand why. Did I miss something? Who has represented that Igor’s work is supposed to be journalism or ‘non-fiction’?

    To extend your argument even a little bit into the realm of the written word would mean to condemn Edgar Allen Poe, Mary Shelley, Honore de Balzac, Dostoevsky, Franz Kafka, and any number of other venerated authors who have enriched our imaginations and our culture with their ‘fictions’ that did not necessarily ‘accurately’ reflect the world they lived in but rather chose to select and amplify certain aspects of those worlds. One thing that surprises me about your argument for accuracy of representation is that it starts to sound a bit like a PC approach to reality… in order to ‘accurately’ depict America, for example, should we include 25% Hispanics, 20% Blacks, 8% Asians, and 1% Native Americans in every crowd scene so that it ‘reflects’ the ‘reality’ of American society?

    On one level I am actually somewhat sympathetic to your argument. I was an academic geographer for many years, and my earliest interest in photography was as a tool for depicting, describing, recording, and transmitting information about places… both in a physical and a cultural sense. I.e., ‘non-fiction’. So I was quite conscious of the problem of images that could be deceptively selective, overly glamorized, or overly seedy, in ‘representing’ the total mosaic experience of an area. As you can imagine, this gave me a love-hate relationship with National Geographic, for example, which all too often in decades past made many places both too exotic and too glamorous… on the other hand, it was one of the few journalistic publications in the English language that made even an attempt at depicting the wider world as it is.

    Because of that background, and a continuing interest in that problem even as my photographic tastes and pursuits have broadened to include many types of ‘fiction’ as well as ‘non-fiction’, I am still personally resistant to the idea of being an ‘art’ photographer, and I am usually more interested in depicting subjects in a more-or-less straightforward and un-stylized way. DAH and I have had arguments about this… his position is rather different than mine. I don’t want to put words in his mouth, but I think he’s probably more sympathetic to the idea that there is no such thing as an ‘objective’ view anyway, that even journalism and ‘non-ficiton’ are highly individualistic and fragmentary views, and that fiction is often the best way to convey the truth about a place or an event. As for me, I still believe there’s such a thing as good ‘non-fiction’ in the photography of places and people. But it doesn’t negate for me the enjoyment and appreciation of many types of ‘fiction’ as well. There’s plenty of art photogrpahy that I don’t respond to positively or even at all… sometimes, I even actively dislike photo work I see. I probably only like about half, or even less, of what gets published on BURN, but my list of what I do like might surprise someone who was looking for any kind of ideological consistency.

    Naturally all viewers, readers, and commenters here are entitled to their opinions, and I’m not going to tell you that you should like Igor’s work, or anyone else’s for that matter. What bothers me is that you seem to have defined for yourself (rather rigidly, I must say) one area of photography that you DO like, and feel this driving need to condemn all the other kinds of photography that appear here that don’t fit into your criteria. Like you, I might wish for more ‘non-fictional’ young photographers, or maybe a different kind of fiction… more like Tolstoy, less like Gogol or Dostoevsky or Poe… but as one of the ‘tribal elders’ here on BURN (I think at 63 I have a couple of years on you, yes?) I feel a responsibility to tell you, that after age 50 or so one’s primary responsibility is to grow old gracefully and not turn into a bitter curmudgeon… for your own good more than anybody else’s. You’ll only make yourself angry if you condemn fiction for not being journalism. Save your vitriol for the distortions and lies that appear under the guise of journalism.

  • Every point of view is exactly a point of view. A photojournalist pointing his camera at a car accident is making fiction as much as Igor is making fiction with his russian story. They are both telling their understanding of their stories. By choosing what to photograph is to depart from reality as there are infinite realities of a car accident, not just the scraped car, the guy in the ambulance, etc., etc., etc. Really, this debate is sterile.

  • Its all in the delclaration of intent.
    this is an unaltered documentary record of the event vs this is an attempt to show how ‘I’ experienced the event.
    One ‘attempts’ to be objective, the other is unashamedly subjective.

    as long as its clearly indicated which is which there should be no errors trying to judge one using the ‘values’ of the other…………………except that there always are :)

  • Ackerman’s recent new work in color is interesting because it doesn’t have the same poetry for me as his work in black and white and i’m not sure why … the technique works in one but not in the other perhaps, and certainly the contrast is lost, or it doesn’t go far enough, not sure?

  • DAH, I am back here!
    The polish photographer (from Davin’s post) is me of course! :-)Thank you for invitation!
    Would be great to see you again.
    We (me and Davin) are planing to make a trip to USA in summer… your loft is in our plan! :-)


  • Has anyone had contact with Panos during the last days?
    Is he back in Athens?
    There might be something interesting going on:
    “Bomb explodes outside Greece’s parliament in central Athens, causing no injuries, police say – AP”

  • Well, Sidney, I’m 59, so we’re pretty close to the same age.

    Honestly, I’m likely just tilting with windmills, because I think photography has already strayed so far afield that it is primarily only of interest in any serious way to other photographers. To most of the rest of the world, it’s just eye candy.

    Photography has become so self referential as to have made itself irrelevant. Show me the stuff that you point the camera at as it is. Don’t filter it through the existential darkness in your own head.

  • Eva;

    Don’t you think Mr Pistolesi is a being a bit precious talking about beautifully composed images etc when his own work is exactly that? Beautifully composed but lacking any soul or emotion. Beautiful travel stock photography… just my 2c…


  • Jim;

    I often equate photography with music; another medium where you must find a voice to rise above the mundane, the copycats and the commercial dross. Look how many innovative variants there are for a simple 3 chord progression!

    I can tap my foot to a catchy pop song (equate with light fluffy photo piece) but it doesn’t mean I’m going to rush out and buy the CD. Whereas I probably will (and do) buy something from a band/singer with a strong personal stamp (equate Larry Towell, Sylvia Plachy, DAH, Bill Allard for photography). None of whom hesitate to put their personal stamp on their work.

    As an aside regarding; “Don’t filter it through the existential darkness in your own head”; we would have no Leonard Cohen songs if we applied that to music! In my opinion that would be a huge loss, so why apply it to photography? I’m not saying you must like Cohen though, just that it’s valid music.

    I feel that Igor’s work does show a distinctive style; and like all photography it’s just his personal view of the world. Imagine how dull and boring the world would be if we all produced similar looking work; ala Corbis/Getty stock images, typical newspapers…. Yet that work has its place too; disposable, fluff etc (e.g. some pop music!)

    Not that I feel that everyone should “love” every photographic work, God forbid that ever happen; otherwise we get into the “Emperors New Clothes” syndrome.

    “photography has already strayed so far afield that it is primarily only of interest in any serious way to other photographers”

    Again I feel that we underestimate people’s intelligence. If you expose the general public to a wide range of work it tends to widen their view too.

    Take my mum for example; 78 years old; and Nat Geo was the extent of her photographic cutting edge. She often looks at the new books I buy; she really enjoyed Sylvia Plachy’s “Self Portrait with Cows Going Home”, hardly mainstream photography. It’s quite a dark book and I’m sure it has been filtered through the existential darkness of Plachy’s head! :-)


  • Ross:

    I don’t know Pistolesi’s work enough, nor him, nor his intentions, to be able to give a judgement. I do think his posting/question is a valid one though.

    What now and then goes through my mind is: is there’s any difference in ethics, I mean, is there’s a right to be a difference if we’re shooting for a personal project vs. an assigned (paid) one… kinda hard to explain and it’s getting too late over here to think straight..

  • Eva; “I do think his posting/question is a valid one though”

    Yes definately!! I wasn’t having a dig at you :-) It’s just that I loooked at his website and saw mostly travel type images.

    Cheers :-)

  • Ross, no problem, for what I know (not enough), you could very well be right with what you write, I really know very little about his work and even less about the intention behind. Night ;)

  • it is the first burn made match, isn’t it? Aga and Davin?

  • photography has already strayed so far afield that it is primarily only of interest in any serious way to other photographers

    Jim says that as if it were a bad thing. Hasn’t he noticed? Everyone’s a photographer these days. The problem lies elsewhere.

  • It looks like I have been missing a good, lively, and varied discussion here. Boy, I want to join in, but I wonder how people find the time to keep up with all this? Especially DAH. I saw your protest that you don’t have time to read all the comments, but it almost looks like you do.

    If by chance you are reading this, you mention an online journal that you are keeping as you work your latest project. I went back as far as I could afford to go searching for the address, but I could not find it and it is not on “your work in progress” pages, which seems to have fallen by the wayside since you started Burn.

    If I understood that post correctly and if you read this, could you supply the address?

    Thank you

  • Yep it sure has strayed and turned on it’s head http://www.etrouko.com.au/im.htm

  • and Jim not only photography that is stuffed http://www.artouko.com/im.htm

  • Jim – I see you are doing an excellent job at playing your usual role in which you define photography through the most narrow lens possible, denounce everything else and then get folks all stirred up.

    I recognize the bait, but, like a really smart trout, this time, I will not bite that bait.

    I refuse to rise to bite your bait.

    You will not get a rise out of me.

    I will just ignore it and move on.

    Absolutely – I will move on with no comment: you will not get a rise out of me….

    I will not bite!

    No, no, no, no!

    I am totally unphased. Your Igor statements dangle before me but I turn away from the enticement.

    I will not bite at all.

    You will not get a rise out me..


    No rise…

    Not at all…

    No rise…

    Do you understand?

    No rise…

    Must I say it again?

    No. I won’t.

    I refuse.

    That would be to rise and

    You will not get a rise out of me…

    Instead, I will go to the ITT store and pick up my new iPhone.

    I can take pictures with the iPhone, you know.

    And I will…

    but you won’t get a rise out of me!

    Not this time!

    No, no, no….!

    Thank you for adding life to my day…

    but I will not bite!

    And yet… and yet…

    What if you are right?

    No! I will not bite!

  • Jim Powers wrote – Well, Sidney, I’m 59, so we’re pretty close to the same age.

    Honestly, I’m likely just tilting with windmills, because I think photography has already strayed so far afield that it is primarily only of interest in any serious way to other photographers. To most of the rest of the world, it’s just eye candy.

    Photography has become so self referential as to have made itself irrelevant. Show me the stuff that you point the camera at as it is. Don’t filter it through the existential darkness in your own head.”

    Jim I think you’ve got a single idea in mind and it’s preventing you from being open…

    Your mind is stuck on Photojournalism as a tool. A tool only to show the world as it is. – That is what photojournalism and documentary is in its purest form, so there is nothing wrong with that idea. But to think that photojournalism is the ONLY form of photography is silly.

    Photography is an art form. Photographers for years have been trying to get it that recognition. The problem is, many people use it as a tool only and forget that the images created can speak to an audience if placed in front of the right people. The photography that Igor presented here is not a pure documentary. it’s more that a collection. Its a work of art in a loose essay format. All of his images are consist, and work very well together to make a single piece. They all share the same color pallet, “line” quality, and subject.

    Take a look at these “classic” creations. They’re all art and they’re all highly recognized as such –
    Starry Night by Van Gogh,
    an untitled chair sculpture by Tom Friedman – http://artcritical.com/mokhtar/AMEight.htm
    paintings by Mondrian
    The Mona Lisa…

    All of these are different from the other in every possibly way. and yet they’re all forms of art. a painter doesn’t discredit a sculptor because he/she doesn’t use paint.
    The basis of art is to SAY something with your work. Art is never just made… it has purpose, meaning whether literal or implied. Art doesn’t say the same thing to everyone who views it. \

    Here are some really great photographers to look into and expand your view about what photography can do as an art.

    Cindy Sherman – Feminism site: cindysherman.com
    Jerry Uelsmann – altered/morphed imagery, all done in a dark room. site: uelsmann.net
    Maggie Taylor – altered/morphed imagry – digitally (Jerry’s wife.) site: maggietaylor.com
    Sam Davis – SciFi space exploration site: samdavisart.com
    William Eggleston – life right now site: egglestontrust.com
    Francesca Woodman
    Diane Arbus

  • Jim

    I too often tire of seeing work that is filtered through “the existential darkness”. Too often it is pretentiouis and ulitimately boring. I was quite prepared to hate Igors essay at first glance just based on the technique. However it quickly won me over.

    I don’t really think there is such a thing as an unfiltered image. The photographs in your newspaper are heavily filtered to represent a particular take on how the world works.

    My own work is heavily filtered through rose colored glasses, a deliberate choice, and a direct opposite to the kind of world Igor portrays. It’s not that I never experience “existential darkness”, I’ve got plenty of things to be depressed about, I just chose not to dwell there.

    Lastly, we all view others photgraphs through our own set of filters. The filters of age, of political and spiritual bend, world view, gender, race, history, phsycological state, education, etc. etc.

    One of the things I love most about BURN is the variety, and caliber of work presented here. It has expanded my thinking and my appreciation of this wonderful art.

  • We’ll never resolve this among posters on Burn. Other than Civi, there are no regular posters here who are not photographers. Why is that? This is a Luci Award winning online photography magazine. Who reads and engages in discussion here? Photographers. There is really no way of knowing if any significant number of viewers who don’t comment here are non-photographers.

    I believe that few who are not photographers actually care about photography anymore. They are bombarded with photography, but it is only background noise. And I think some of the reason is that we are creating art that is inaccessible, incomprehensible, so self referential to be irrelevant. Does that leave only boring, natgeo stuff that folks will look at? Maybe it does. Maybe we’re only talking to ourselves.

  • ………we have been talking to ourselves for a while maybe not as long and intensly as the fine art world, but as photo people we sure are catching up

  • Jim.
    Look at the top left corner of this site and read what it says… and then read the name again.

  • Okay, Jim – I will bite one more time.

    This statement of yours,

    “Does that leave only boring, natgeo stuff that folks will look at?”

    says a great deal and explains many things – but not what you mean it to say.

  • John,

    I understand what you mean but I’m afraid that by answering with violence (making sbdy lose face being violent), you don’t make him/her less arrogant in the end..

  • “Word came back today that I had to stay out of the favela. Perhaps temporary, perhaps not.Top drug lord not happy suddenly with my presence.”

    David, please take this very seriously. I’m sorry but Christian Poveda comes strongly to mind. These kind of folks don’t talk out their frustrations, they act on them. And they’ve already shown you the tools they use. Don’t you return home on the 10th anyway? If so, it sounds like your Guardian Angel (as Kathleen refers to “him”) is working overtime to keep you safe…


  • I took the NatGeo reference as a sly joke. Ojalá.

    On the larger issue of the dark and the dreary and the technically suspect, I’m in general agreement with Jim. It’s just that exceptions are out there. And there’s an age element as well. Bitching too much about alternative arts kinda comes off as yelling at the youngsters to get off of your lawn.

    Regarding the current essay, I find it a bit disturbing, creepy even, that the photographer has apparently gone to such great lengths to copy the style of another, and a contemporary no less. I’m aware that there’s a long tradition of art students being sent to the Louvre to faithfully copy the masters as a learning experience, but this seems closer to outright stealing. Maybe it’s stealing in the Picasso, great artists steal, sense, but still, it makes me uncomfortable. If what I understood from Bob is correct, and I were Ackerman, I think I might want some kind of royalties. Oh well, not for me to judge. Without the link and the background from Bob, I’d have been unaware. Best to just enjoy.

    But back in the neighborhood of Jim’s point, I suspect if Posner wanted to look like a NatGeo photographer, he’d pull it off. He’s got skills. Not only in so many technical aspects of photography, but in narrative as well. More and more I suspect that still photography is in such a (perceived, at least) state of crisis as much because so many of the best photographers actively try to keep their work from being seen by the masses as it is because of any inherent deficiency in the medium. While Posner’s St. Petersburg may not appeal to most people who subscribe to Outdoor Photographer, much less Better Homes and Garden, it would have great appeal to a good number of English majors who will likely never learn of its existence. And if he gets a book out of it, those English majors aren’t going to be able to afford it, even if they do somehow hear about it. Seems it’s gonna take awhile before I get Bruce Davidson’s little $5000 prints and $350 book out of my head, eh? I’m suspecting that that kind of effete product placement is far more dangerous to the future of still photography than young people wallowing in the dark and dreary. Without some kind of easier distribution, the way it’s going, great photography will degenerate into something only the wealthy see when they crack open the large safe in the mansion’s basement. I exaggerate, sure, but by how much?

  • Jim, You must have a thick skin and quite a constitution to stick to your guns amongst all the divergent views to your own. That being said I think any photography that moves anyone to feel anything including vehement dislike is probably hitting some mark and in essence validates the effort if not itself.

    You say “we are creating art that is inaccessible, incomprehensible, so self referential to be irrelevant”. I think if you showed Igor’s essay to a broad swath of the public some may find it difficult to comprehend, but I think there would be many who would appreciate it. There are many things difficult to comprehend worth contemplating even for a moment. For every reaction there is an equal and opposite reaction. We need to see the dark in order to see the light. Isn’t that the point? Carl Jung said that as humanity becomes more enlightened we will also see our own shadow in greater detail, the dark deep recesses of our soul that do not like to be exposed. Photography that is relevant is that which engages both sides of our brain, the logical and rational with the intuitive and emotive. Igor’s piece probably lands more on the intuitive emotional side but in a world governed by rationality and logic, where computer models decide the fate of our economy and the number of bombs to drop in foreign invasions I think we could use some more intuition and emotion, some humanity.

    The photography that becomes irrelevant is the photography that is cliche, boring, utilitarian, and functional. This kind of photography is done very well by large numbers of the public with digital cameras. As more people are exposed to the act of creating their own images the more they will appreciate the artistry and vision of photography outside of the NatGeo or newspaper variety. I think photography is now, through multimedia and the net reaching a place akin to film making where telling the story and evoking emotion is the true value. If photography even develops a fraction of the public impact that movies do I don’t think we have anything to worry about.

  • David – Patricia is right… that edge you’re on is getting too jagged and rusty… one slip and it could be your life. if not from the cut – then from the infection… what I mean is – they may put notice out among the “people” that if you’re caught in the city, country, region… These are the sorts of people that could make it impossible for you to work in the country ever again.


    the online journal of DAH – do you mean the Twitter Stream? This is here:

  • “Carl Jung said that as humanity becomes more enlightened we will also see our own shadow in greater detail, the dark deep recesses of our soul that do not like to be exposed.”

    The “dark recesses of our soul” are not dark, high contrast, fuzzy, and grainy. Why photos with those characteristics have become a cliched metaphor for our bad choices I can’t quite figure out. And the idea that humanity has become more enlightened is a joke. We’ve simply become more obsessed with the voices in our own heads.

  • “Jim, You must have a thick skin and quite a constitution to stick to your guns amongst all the divergent views to your own.”

    Well, of course I do. I’m a photographer. Isn’t that what photographers are being urged to do here?

  • Jim:

    “The “dark recesses of our soul” are not dark, high contrast, fuzzy, and grainy.”

    How’d you know that? Ever had a dream? A nightmare? What do you think about poetry in literature? What about theatre? Which place does Shakespeare have in your world?

    Have a great day all, off shooting..

  • Eva, the “darkest recesses of our soul” are bright, sharply defined and seductive. (With the qualification that I don’t believe in an immaterial “soul”).

  • “Jim, You must have a thick skin and quite a constitution to stick to your guns amongst all the divergent views to your own.”

    Jim, I think this is where you provide your most valuable service. You help to thicken up the skins of all these young photographers, even when their work is excellent. And, as you know, even the most excellent work of the very best will be criticized. As to the thickness of your own skin, I believe you revel in the controversy your comments generate.

  • Frosty, I don’t “revel” in anything. I haven’t created a persona just for Burn. What you see is really what you get with me.

  • a civilian-mass audience


    Break a leg!
    tfelix’s Break a leg! set
    NOT an everyday …essay !!!
    broken leg BUT a strong Spirit .

    HAPPY BIRTHDAY BRENT FOSTER !!! you look good …for 64 !!!

  • Jim, I believe that, but I also believe that what I see is the real you and the real you does revel in it, even if you don’t want to believe it.

  • Thanks CIVI :)
    to see it as a slideshow: http://www.flickr.com/photos/tfelix/sets/72157623178612838/show/

    I have to agree with Frostfrog. See it as an compliment – and accept it ;-)

  • a civilian-mass audience

    BURNIANS…let me tell you…after 3 Skype sessions with JIM…

    I have to admit …:

    1) JIM has a heart of gold

    2) JIM is original …”What you see is really what you get with me.”

    3) he hasn’t accepted the key of his Greek house…not yet :)))

    4) He loves BURN as much …as we ALL do

    5) 91% of the time …he has a strong, valuable,accurate …point…

    6) he has been around the universe…for quite some time…

    7) he has a nice ride …and haircut…

    8) many times…he has raised …even my blood pressure to unhealthy limits…



    P.S MR.HARVEY …taking chances …oime…I hope MAMA SOCRATES…doesn’t read your tweets…oime

  • Skype sessions. Hmmmm. Now that’s interesting.

  • a civilian-mass audience

    JIM …whatever happens in Skype…stays in Skype…




    you forgot one thing about Jim..which was the first thing i thought about…that TEXAS accent..gotta love it…


    you are quite right…and yesterday i was seriously afraid for several hours…nothing fun about it…the problems always come when you have “permission” from one group, but then another “higher level” group decides that what the original group photographed thought was fine, was not fine after all…no way to win in this scenario…i always proceed with as much caution as possible, but there is always the unknown that can never be known…and so many different personalities that are altered from hour to hour by drugs…so, the same person who is welcoming one minute can totally flip on you…ironically my first thought is never for my life, but for the pictures…i always think, “sure would hate to lose this card”..

    cheers, david

  • Civi, I never kiss and tell.

  • a civilian-mass audience

    JIM…I do tell and kiss…hihihi…
    Texas accent…we haven’t gone that far…not yet…:)))

    MR.HARVEY …if one can survive Rio …that would be you…
    now… the CIRCUS …Carnival… it has written your name all over…DAHY…

  • “Other than Civi, there are no regular posters here who are not photographers.”

    AKAKY IRL: Okay, you didnt quit your job, did you?

    AKAKY: No, why do you ask?

    AKAKY IRL: Because this guy, what the hell’s his name, Jim, he says that no regular on that damn DAH site you’re always looking at is not a photographer. I’m just checking, that’s all. I wanna make sure you didnt do something stupid.

    AKAKY: Quit my job for what they pay those guys? Not frigging likely.

    AKAKY IRL: You’re sure? I’m not gonna wake up one of these days and find myself out of house and home just because you caught this picture bug, am I?

    AKAKY: Nope. Don’t worry about it, dude.

    AKAKY IRL: You better no be lying to me, guy, or there’s gonna be hell to pay.

    AKAKY: Keep your shirt, for chrissakes. I’m not quitting my job. Go watch tv or something and leave me alone.

    AKAKY IRL: Okay.

  • a civilian-mass audience

    CIVI : I love you all.

    CIVI IRL: Are you serious ??? …you sound so tedious…

    CIVI : BURNIANS are my “eyes”…BURNIANS are my …everyday visual inspiration…

    CIVI IRL : are you for real …???

    CIVI : I am just a civilian …and I just copy and paste…AKAKYYYYYYYYYYY…I am trying ….

  • wow…..
    sure has been exciting around here lately…..
    its almost like a movie…..
    as BURN returns…..

  • Jim

    You wrote “The “dark recesses of our soul” are not dark, high contrast, fuzzy, and grainy. Why photos with those characteristics have become a cliched metaphor for our bad choices I can’t quite figure out.”

    It is certainly true that dark, high contrast, fuzzy, grainy has become a cliche’ and technique of choice for expressing angst, despair, and the dark side of life. I agree it can get tiresome.

    Cliches, however, become cliches because they work. I suspect none of us can really avoid using them. Newspapers and magazines are full of them of course. I have a great appreciation for a new take on an old cliche’, or just a particularly well done one.

    Igors use of the technique here works extremely well for the most part, and resonates with most of the people who have commented on it. I have a couple of nit-picky tech concerns which I did not voice in my comment under the essay. I always feel if you are going to do grainy, at least the grain should be sharp, even if the image is not. Fuzzy grain. Though tough to judge on a computer monitor, I suspect these are scanned negs, rather than scans from prints. Then there are the scratches and water marks, left in for effect I’m assuming. I just find them a distraction, which could have been removed with a couple of mouse clicks.

    Overall, nit-picks aside, there are some stand-out wonderful images in Igors set, and a very successful example of the technique.

  • each photographer shoots in the way they shoot for a variety of reasons, each photographer comes to and hones story for a variety reasons, each photographer is drawn, inspired sympathetic to work for an entire calculus of reasons. each one of us, no matter our place or walk in life, must balance and reconcile ourselves to the way we live and how we measure out the spoonfuls of living in our life. we take pictures, each of us, for an entire history of reason that is as different from one to another as are the ways that a cat may hold her tail, or scape up against the dark.

    i must, briefly, add the reason why i linked to Michael’s work vis-a-vis Igor’s notes. Let me again iterate that I know Igor personally and have watched his work grow and mature. my wish, not at all, was not to compare the two, nor denigrate. Igor clearly admires Michael and is profoundly under the visual influence of what Michael achieved in EndTime city and Fiction and Michael’s story Half-Life is also a clear inspiration. It is true, and i have spoken with Igor about this prior, that Igor is still searching for his oww visual way of expressing all that swirls inside his life experience. It is easy to be frustrated with the similarity and on ocassions i have also been both disturbed and frustrated. However, what lay at the core of how and why a photographer chooses to photograph is entirely outside each of our scopes of judgment. Igor photographs the way he does for reasons maybe similar to michael’s and at odds with them. How does one begin to argue over this. Sarah Moon: and her influence on michael and me…or deborah Turberville….her book on petersburg?….and frank and moriyama and peterson on everyone?….

    what matters, what only matters to me, is that a person searches out those stories and those ways of telling story that best compliment their own life and ideas. in the end style is not owned by anyone, nor is language, nor is inspiration…the larger understanding is that it is all a collective, an organized way, a human way, to mark out the carvings of each of ou lives…

    what i so much disdain about jim’s brash attitude is not that he finds the photography crap, who cares, but that he attempts to mark out for another the navigation of their lives. there’s plenty of things in life that not a single one of us agrees with or may enjoy and it doesnt matter…i hate onions and television and yet should i belittle my wife for her love of onions or my son for his love of tv shows….it’s grotesquely arrogant….

    in the end, it doesnt matter one iota whether igor’s essay look like michaels, because michael lives his life the way he sees it and igor the same, and they’re friends and so be that. the teacher always reconciles themselves to the student, and besides what matters most is that each of us, through genuine earnestness and joy, share with each and everyone what it is we love and whittle away…

    and lastly, for those who haven’t read Notes in a while or not at all, the one cliche thing that hasn’t been discussed here is Dostoevsky’s humor…actually Notes is a quite funny book and the entire second half is much much less ‘existential’ (dark and scratched) then it is a very simple and often absurd love story…for me Igor’s “notes’ has much much less to do with dostoevsky’s ‘notes’ (then a name and place and time of season and locations (boulevards/bridges/bars/apartments) then it does with the experience of returning to a city and country in which you are both part and absent…and that was also the narrator’s idea….which he learned in loved…..

    and why do we persist in suggesting that if we dont’ like something it’s shit….or cliched….or unapproachable….how about just saying:

    ‘not my cup of chai’…and be done with it….

    texas accent or not

    maybe we all need more bbq, cause aint it really about the time spent together in the first place? not necessarily which bbq sauce is sweeter


  • Bob; “how about just saying: ‘not my cup of chai’…and be done with it….


  • Thomas B – Yes, that must be what I mean. I misunderstood. Thanks.

  • a civilian-mass audience


    you brought back so many memories..
    Are we talking about the famous highest mountain in Cyprus …with all the churches and the monastiria???

  • Getting photographic access to my dog ( camera shy) is rare and difficult with the rare grainy blurred shot………….one day I will manage to create an essay. People will be amazed with my ability to get access

  • DAH – good to hear you are safely en route

  • Tzalavras_5321_S.jpg – what a tiny sauce pan! is it for hot chocolate???

  • Civi… yes, that’s the one…

    And here is the Milky Way!!

    Jason… no idea…

    ‘night from Cy