The Middle of Somewhere
Sam Harris is an uncommon man. He’s at home more than most. Taking care of his family and photographing his two daughters growing up along the way. His latest book “The Middle of Somewhere” is a visual testament to his family dedication. This is Sam’s second book on his family, the first being “Postcards From Home”. Both essays were featured here on Burn prior, so yes we are proud.
Like all of us , Sam needed help.
Our previous post on Kerry Payne Stailey is not the end of the Lucie Awards story. ceiba just became the Lucies “Publisher of the Year” and Sam’s “Middle of Somewhere” was the chosen title. ceiba is a book publisher starting 18 months ago in collaboration with Eva-Maria Kunz. This is the second book from ceiba, having published Zun Lee‘s acclaimed “Father Figure” last year. Eva teamed up with picture editor Candy Pilar Godoy for both collaborations. Eva and Candy got their start in the publishing business with my book “(based on a true story)” , BurnBooks 2012. Eva as producer and Candy as a “character” and picture editor. I am forever grateful. The two also played roles at BurnMagazine, so it’s clear the Eva/Candy team can rock the house down. Branches off the tree. Applause.
Naturally we at Burn are pleased with all of this. After all the stated goal of Burn since Anton Kusters and I got it rolling in 2008 was to provide a platform for heretofore unknown talents at a time when traditional outlets were dying.
Good on you Sam Harris. The book looks and feels terrific. The work in it poignant and sublime. It is at the end a true family affair.
Sam Harris is a photographer and educator. As a teenager he taught himself photography, turning his London bedroom into a makeshift darkroom. Throughout the 90’s Sam photographed portraits and sleeve art for numerous recording artists. He also worked as an editorial photographer for publications such as The Sunday Times Magazine, Esquire, The Sunday Telegraph Magazine and Dazed & Confused. The over commercialization of the music industry during the late 90’s was the catalyst for a change in direction, both personal and photographic.
Sam’s photobook Postcards from Home (a self published limited edition) has received several awards including the Australian publishing industries Galley Club Award ‘Australian Book of the Year’ 2012.
Follow Sam Harris on Instagram: @samharrisphoto
26 thoughts on “Sam Harris – The Middle of Somewhere”
Great stuff Sam!!!!! You’re certainly on a wild ride at the moment! Well deserved! :-)
Congratulations Sam, I love your photography. For anyone wondering what to photograph, look to your family and friends.
Congratulations too to Eva and Candy! Burn really makes a positive contribution to photography.
Congratulations, Sam! I have your book and believe I have viewed all essays you have published online, so I have seen these images before. Yet, if anything, I enjoyed them even more now.
Congratulations, Eva. You are doing marvelous things.
:) coudnt be more happy for Sam and Eva :)…having written long, poetic posts for both Sam’s books when shown here, so thrilled :)
big congrats…the world rattles :)
BIG CONGRATS ONCE AGAIN SAM and all involved ..
Btw, I love your sexy accent .
You’re a beast !!!
Super excited for you Sam! Well deserved!
Super excited for you Sam! Well deserved!
Great interview btw… Cheers, Jeremy
Thank you Michael (mw), Ross, Mike, Frostfrog, Marcin, Bob, Panos & Jeremy. I really appreciate all your comments and support over the years.
Bob… who would have thought when we first communicated off line after your wonderful poetic posts that things would develop as they have! Appreciate your words of encouragement and also your guidance 🙏🏽
Panos… Ha! I think we all know your Greek accent is waaaay more sexy!
DAH… Thank you! for all encouragement, guidance and support. Your voice echoes in my mind throughout this work. You are an INSPIRATION!!
and MASSIVE thanks to Ceiba Foto (Eva & Candy) for believing in me and my work and making this book a reality. The LUCIE Award was the icing on the cake!!
I was somewhere once. The pizza wasn’t that great.
Reading Frostfrog’s comment about Likes and emoticons in another thread, and then coming to this one and seeing this work by Sam made me realize that I’ve come to terms with the social media shorthand. “Like ;)” is just as good as “I like this work, it makes me smile.”
But I do sometimes miss the deeper analysis. Why people like a particular work, why it makes them smile.
Speaking generically, pictures of someone else’s kids is just about the last kind of essay I want to see, so when I see one I like and it makes me smile, like this or Christopher Anderson’s family pics, I find it worthwhile to consider the deeper workings.
In this case, I think the title is very important. “The Middle of Somewhere” suggests deeper, multiple layered meaning and entices the viewer to try to figure it out. Does it relate to the locale or the phases of childhood or is it more than that particular double entendre. Gives one something interesting to think about beyond the visual elements of the photos themselves.
And then those visual elements are quite impressive. The photos are shot from a wide variety of distances and angles. The subject matter, though seemingly limited, varies and often surprises. The color palette is well-realized.
Altogether, it’s a superb piece of visual storytelling.
Of course this post is about more than Sam’s work and the “Like ;)” way of communicating doesn’t do that justice either. Those who produced the book did just as high level work in their field and Sam did in his. Congrats to them, as well.
But for better or worse, we live in the age of social media and its shorthand manners of communication.
as we spoke long ago: what matters is where the heart is sit’d and points and you’ve made that (as i knew you would) a bite and breath of light….and success couldnt happen to a finer man, and a family man at that, which is always the most important think to me :)
so happy and proud of you…keep those books coming…your daughters have years to grow :)
hahahahah….well, if you ever want to see ‘deep’ (maybe not) or at least Long analysis, have a gander of what i wrote under Sam’s publications here (for both books)…long and i hope thoughtful…
or better yet, just get the books :))
after all those years of writing ridiculously long comments and trying to bring a rich analysis to what was published here, now i just write simply…those words need to be in other places (my own books ;)), but sometimes it is enough to just see the work and let it spin the head, wordless :)
MW ;) like
John Gladdy and 32 other people liked Imants’s Like.
Bonjour! It’s been I while that I did not reply to comments:
Congratulations for your book!
Slow and long and close photojournalism is the key… You and ONLY you can take this kind of pictures of your family.
That’s unique, that’s the sole photographer/artist point of view, as Sally Mann, as Alan Laboile used to see their families. I also think that we, photographers, are like antropologues/ethnologues for next generations… We are in charge to show the way we live nowadays…
A book will stand forever! Print (book/contact sheet/fineart paper/photocopies) will stand forever. Instead keeping files in electronic support will not last much. How many of us can read a 3 1/2 floppy disk?? Laptops are getting rid of USB ports… I wonder where I can plug my HD in 2020 when looking for antiques files…
@ BURN TEAM:
Thanks for putting togheter Sam’s essay after Kerry Pane (amazing-deep-personal-struggling) one!
@ KERRY: Congratulations for the Lucie Award a few days ago in NYC
@ EVERY ARTIST/PHOTOGRAPHER:
Arles remembers me (of course) the festival, sun, southern France, but also remembers me Vincent Van Gogh. Letters to Theo (his brother and art dealer), is an amazing personal dairy that every one of us MUST read.
Have a nice Week end!! Shine!
This book is photographic achievement of the highest order. It’s my new favourite book and I am delighted to have purchased it directly from the man himself.
Talking about likes and the like, when I was first perusing this marvellous book, I found myself double tapping some pictures. How daft is that?
Congrats Sam!What a wonderful part of the world you and your beautiful family inhabit. Beats rock and roll any day, huh?
Charles… Thanks! yes indeed. although… music has been such a massive part of my process. it still inspires me in a way nothing else can and as i’m sure you well know, sometimes a special connection, a collaboration can be so precious. I love my life now, where we live, how we live, but every now and then i get the itch… it’s in my dna. if i’m ever in Seattle i’ll give you a shout and likewise if you ever find yourself downunder, i’m sure we’ve lots to talk over. Cheers!
Paul / aka Photo Humourist – Thank you so much. It was lovey meeting you at The Photographers’ Gallery launch in London. I’m so glad you made it and we had a chance to meet. Hope we can meet again with a little more time to talk :)
pAtrIcIO m. Thanks! i appreciate your comments :)
Congratulations Sam. You really have a great body of work here and I admit every so often check I it out for “guidance” with my own family stuff.
SAMMY …I hold your baby in my hands (thank you and THANK YOU EVA)!!!
Thank you my family for taking care of SAMMY …he is tooooo much sometimes,I know…!!!
Thank you BURN for the video …amazing idea. Everyday life is a wow inspiration !!!
Beer is on the table …olives and ouzo will be on my table…
A MESSAGE TO ALL BURNIANS…together we can do miracles*
Love to ALL,thank you again !!!
about the accent…we need subtitles…yohoho,the pirate’s life for me …hiii
Paul… Thank you! i really appreciate your comment and support and it’s very flattering to think that out there someone looks at my work for guidance, really! Cheers! and i hope our paths cross sometime soon :)
Civi… i’m so happy you have a copy! Yes beer was on the table, beer was on the floor, beer was in the air… (it was Arles after all :)). Olives would have been a great addition but you know how oily fingers stain the pages. as for the ‘accent’… what accent? :)) big hug to you and yours, waiting for our meeting, olives and ouzo for sure! and THANK YOU for spreading so much positive energy xx
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