Panos Skoulidas

Death in Venice

[ The Book ]



“I love the smell of urine in the morning, it reminds me of North Venice beach. The first place in America where a woman could wear a bathing suit in public, a man could go without a hat, where a person could pee in public without being arrested. The place where Kerouac, Burrows and John Wilber spoke while Charlie Parker played saxophone, where Morrison and Krieger pondered the doorway to the other side, where Charlie Chaplin built a ginger bread court for his mother, and W.C. Fields one for himself. Where you could get alcohol during prohibition, heroin during the fifties and sixties, crack in the eighties, and Meth in the new millennium. Where art meets crime. Where Arnold made pumping iron into Gold. Where you can see a man balance a stove on his chin while juggling chain saws. Break-dancing, roller-skating, and of course skate boarding. The slum by the sea, Dog Town.”

– Robin G. Brown



“Panos did not go to Venice Beach to take pictures. He was already there. There was no escape. Locked down. Stuck. California dreaming.

Click click.

Narcissistic, sarcastic, irreverent, hedonistic, decadent, satiric, ironic, paranoid, and flat out soulful, Panos is at the center of his own photographs. This is a good sign, for he lives inside his own work. Bring the boy another beer.

Death in Venice is a collection, a kaleidoscope, a myriad of mirrors, a massive mind spinning vortex. Get a grip on it. Or not. He doesn’t care.

Click click.”

– David Alan Harvey / Magnum Photos



“Death in Venice” by Panos Skoulidas
published by BurnBooks on May, 2015
edition of 1000 copies
dimensions: 28cm x 43.2cm, 68 pages


Order “Death in Venice” here

Panos Skoulidas - Death in Venice (book cover)
Panos Skoulidas – Death in Venice (book cover)



Homer, Nietzsche, Zorba, Hunter, Theodoros, Harvey, Frida…. where do I start? EASY, David Alan Harvey, my mentor, brother, family 

BTW this book is dedicated to Scotty (vet) and all of the vampires and souls  that create the Venice vortex.

To all Pirates, you know who you are! Thanks for the couches, floors, Bong hits, love, etc..

Each of you are a part of every picture. Carry it with you, as I will forever!



Vissaria~ You are the future!!!! Maria~ Strong as a bird, Mom & Dad biggest hug, Kim my awesome wife, and Meredith, my super supportive mother in law… (thank u ALL for endless support……) LOLA~ Not last by any means. My Ghandi, my Buddha, my  meditation, my companion. BURN MAGAZINE CREW~ Anton (THANK YOU FOR OUT OF THIS WORLD DESIGN), Diego YOU DA MAN,  Haik……no words… RYAN! Oh Ryan what would I be without you? and FRANCESCA Gennari the killer associate producer…

PEACE TO ALL!!!!!!! ENJOY!!!!!!!

– Panos


408 thoughts on “Panos Skoulidas – Death In Venice”

  1. One The one hand I am very happy for Panos. He has a book out, it looks funky, and for a newsprint book most of the images manage to stand up. But on the other hand I am saddened.
    When I mentioned this the other day I was was asked why ‘I’ should be bothered about panos’s book and shouldnt I be thinking of mine? ….doesnt really make any logical sense, but there you go.
    what you get.
    I bought the early signed free gift edition. Not because I wanted some sort of ‘collector’ piece art nonsense, but because of Panos. Because for all his quirks and stoner mannerisms i think he really loves photography and what photography has bought him. I think he really believes that it and that the people he has met through it, have saved him. And if he released it again, with all the same faults, I would do the same again.
    So in the post I get a $40 color newspaper. The blacks have overwhelmed the cover image, and also the centre spread…but its on newsprint so maybe let that go. We can call it edgy. YAY!

    The entire copy that I have has a thick horizontal indentation in the paper running through the whole thing. Do they all have that? Is it because of the paper type? Printing error? I mean We paid $40 for this, it aint cheap.
    Just about every frame of note has been cropped, ruining the integrity of those frames. This clearly is a ‘design’ decision, and while it does look kinda funky, these are photographs.
    I find it hard to understand that anyone would allow their work to be chopped up like this just for the sake of design. or maybe it was thought that the pictures were only of use as an aid to a funky layout.

    THE FONT. Great gods who picked that? If that is not the worst font EVER used in a photobook I would like to see what beat it. It is all but unreadable and just looks cheap.
    And maybe that’s why I am saddened by this because it takes someones entire output, a record of their life, and turns it into a saturday morning cartoon.


  2. The entire copy that I have has a thick horizontal indentation in the paper running through the whole thing. Do they all have that?

    Yes yes they all do! It’s meant to be folded in half by design!!! Yes

  3. This is one of those things that in its present narration could work so much better on the small screen than in this quasi magazine format.

    What we lose here is the social media nature of the content it is buried in a jumble of photographs with only the collage/scrap book look to back it.

    Me I would have loved to see it as a visual verbal that could transit from one media to another not this static creation. In other words I would have created a short digital artwork consisting of images, short video, comments etc……. then make a series e books and see if they add or detract to the work ……… and finally a book maybe ??

    The honesty is there but it has been watered down into a collage scrapbook……. Panos your work deserves a better platform than this .

  4. I am wondering if Panitos pre-empted in his very own way, all the possible criticism, with the cover shot as his response to it! :-)

  5. I love all the thoughts and ideas and I expect more . Venice is an on going project still…
    Why am I so obsessed? I don’t know .
    But one thing I know and I need to take responsibility ( if there’s such a word in my vocabulary;), is that I ASKED and begged the designer to go this “way”…
    For many is disrespect!
    For me it’s like mocking my own SELF , making my influences unreadable.
    Who cares ? Who cares who says what? Who cares who did what? I never look at the credits of a movie but
    I’m TOTALLY AWARE that 99% of people do…
    I “grabbed every opportunity ” to fuck this up, and I think I ( with my CREW – Anton Kusters and Diego Orlando did a great job…

    Now question is : should I make a coffe table out of this ,? With Perfect glossy paper? Why ? Ok, why not?
    You see back in the day , venice mags and fanzines had tiny budget and huge contribution to local culture…
    This DIV publication is made to be purchased TWICE at least.. No CONDOM AROUND IT,
    NO FAKE GIMMICKS, RECYCLE BAGS , or other cheap shit… It’s honest … It’s meant to be destroyed, and enjoyed, it’s not meant to be in a BOOKSHELF with all your other hard/softcover BORING LOOKING BOOKS…
    No no no…
    This a tabloid impossible to SAVE..
    Just like venice beach .. Try it

  6. Of course I could have printed all in China and poison people every time they touch the publication..
    But all I wanted is the “CHEAP LOOKING TRUE VENICE feeling” , but NOT A CHEAP PRODUCTION..
    That’s why I chose ITALY and not Mongolia to produce it.
    Trust me, I didn’t DO THIS ALONE..
    I wish I could take all credit but read above to see the collaboration….
    And if it looks “venice gutter cheap”??? Then we succeeded

  7. “For me it’s like mocking my own SELF , making my influences unreadable.”…….. great but it does not come across in this artwork if you want an audience for your ideas let them participate.You did that in your PR videos, jibber jabber, yes that was the Venice……………… This was always yours, you gave your shoes to someone else to wear

  8. Hey Panos, congrats on getting this all put together. Making this kind of commitment to a project ain’t easy. The photos in the slideshow look wonderful, and I like the idea of going “all-in” and giving the collection a trashy look and feel to reflect Venice. Not sure I’d have the courage to do that.

    Never mind the critics. I don’t get some of the comments. Pissed about the font choice? It’s a trashy rag, and the font is as trashy as it gets. geez.

    Keep grooving on.

  9. Me I would have loved to see it as a visual verbal that could transit from one media to another not this static creation. In other words I would have created a short digital artwork consisting of images, short video, comments etc……. then make a series e books and see if they add or detract to the work ……… ”

    Imants , I LOVE your idea

  10. Officially in BURNSTORE at,

    Thank you , BURNCREW Kaya Lee Berne , Kimberly Skoulidas

    Officially in BURNSTORE at,

    PRODUCER : Diego Orlando
    Co producer : Francesca Gennari
    DESIGN : Anton Kusters

    Diego Orlando Francesca Gennari Anton Kusters


    PROUD once again ( click link to see why )…
    Or I’ll make it easy for you!

    “…Yo mismo me sorprendo de lo que fui capaz de hacer siendo tan joven», relata David. Además, está produciendo el libro de otro fotógrafo, Panos Skoulidas, Death in Venice. «Publico muchos libros de otras personas y solo alguna vez hago los míos…”

  12. All i remember of monterey is the pier, stienbecks cannery row transported to 1977 with seafood resteraunts and marine cruises in place of the canning factories of the 30’s, but his people were still there, the hobos and winos and drifters still flowed in and out like they had for a hundred years.
    I got a job washing dishes in a big italian crab and steak house and at nite after my shift id get a big tub of steaks and crab legs i’d collected from the leftovers on the plates i washed and take them down to the campfires under the pier. These were my people though i didnt understand why, i do now. Brown leather faces toothless grins missing fingers, crutches and stray dogs drinking Ripple and thunderbird and rainer ale, these guys still rode the freight trains from saltlake city and chicago and albequirqe, they talked about beaches in mexico where they spent the winter and picking grapes in the Napa valley, i felt like jim out of treasure island and this pirate crew made a place for me at the campfire and handed me half a warm colt 45.

    Photograph; Night, a cheap motel room, the united states a young philipino drug dealer preparing to go to work stands in front of a full length mirror,he is combing his hair strait back around his bare chest is a shoulder holster and pistol a ciggerette hangs from his lips, in the mirror you can see his prostitute girlfriend lying on a clothes strewn bed watching him with admiration

    we all think we are holy as children; what about the knife thats got your name on it dancing up the alley at dawn twelve dollars clutched in your right hand and an old leather jacket so thick that that fucker cant get the blade to slide threw, so your just spinning circles together till he starts aiming for your head then you drop him and together your rolling on the sidwalk as pedestrians walk silently by heading for work or the motel door that came crashing down as the sf parole department stamp a boot on your face and jam a gun barrel to the back of your head as you furiously work your throat up and down trying to swallow those last two rocks that could cost you five more years because of your priors or the blank look on the face of your crimey as you stand above him with a claw hammer in your hand and explain to him the urgency that is required of him to hand over his share of the loot as you’v spent yours already and all of the pipes have been pushed clean as whistles or the time you tried to kick smack on angel dust and you stood naked on the bed staring at the mirror convinced you could peel the skin from your head to your toes and a new creature would emerge shining and pink and free how you walked out of the motel took a left and disapeared into another world that turned the piss of sixth and mission into the fragrance of roses.

    Photograph; The living room of an apartment, the barrio san fransisco, blankets are nailed to all the windows, a single lite bulb illuminates a gaunt man sitting on a stool he is naked except for a white pair of boxer shorts, he is injecting himself in his right arm but his attention is not on this, around his head is a contraption made from jewlers glasses and velcro, a small metal arm juts out from the left of this machine on which a saftey pin has been glued, on the end of the pin he has impaled a
    cockroach, focus, shoot ,wait.

    one day you come up against some imoveable force and it just so happens that right now your all present and accounted for and your eyes burn into each others and every thing goes silent like its holy hour and you know theres no turning back and your scanning for spikes on the railings to impale his head on cos you dont have your crowbar and his fists are pumping to the rythem of his heart and people start to backaway and you remember how clean it felt when you were about to hang yourself and you summon that moment and he can see ,he can tell that someones going to die and for some reason he tries to laugh and offers you a ciggerette which you take without speaking then he turns and walks slowly down the street back to the hostel were he gets drunk and picks up a fire extinguisher and crushes drunk tom the wet brained irish boys skull to a pulp then lies down on the pool room floor and goes to sleep.

    Excerpts from Horse lattitudes. Chris Wilson’s Autobiography.

    I guess I hoped your book of pictures would make me feel like this book of words, and word photographs, did.

  13. Excerpts from Horse lattitudes. Chris Wilson’s Autobiography.

    Sounds GREAT. I need to read this autobiography… but one thing I can
    guarantee… I’m not Chris Wilson … But I’ll
    promise I’ll try to start writing !!! I love writing !
    Although my instinct begs me to stick with making photos instead !!??
    Those voices…. We all have in our heads u know…
    I’m no different. I hear my own voices too

  14. Hardest thing in the world is BE HONEST with yourself , and even harder is to express it and share it with others.. “To communicate” nowadays is being confused with “to PLEASE”…
    No no no… It’s all about being You and try to communicate your “YOU” , not someone else, someone perfect

  15. Diego Orlando

    John, i would like to find better words than Panos to describe his book and to answer your questions.. but i cannot.He has been perfectly clear..
    Your feeling it is absolutely right, the black, the text, the font.. all is tuned with the cover mood – even the feeling you would like to love the product but you cannot entirely love it, because something is pushing you away.
    Technically the fold is a simple pre-fold to avoid to destroy pages too soon: this tabloid is supposed to be given already folded. And no, it is not cheap trying to appear cheap.. In a paper so thin we wanted to keep details on the bright parts leaving the black alone.. and if you turn the page and you see the black is not appearing, that is what was difficult.
    you found the perfect description: “We can call it edgy”.. this the most appropriate book review so far!

  16. Panos, I love it. Choppy, frantic energy. Loud. Irritating. Never still. I turn a few pages then I have to put it down. Want to spill beer on it. Roll it up and swat flies with it. Then go back and turn more pages. It stings. The Butthole Surfers blasting on my speakers. Love it.


    actually i agree with everything you said…the text is a nightmare …un-readable…some of his images are chopped or cut in half and it is waaay over priced….but you are saddened? really? give me a break John..that comment screams bullshit….i will bet you CANNOT stop looking at it….


    and the whole point!!

    would you really expect “refinement” in a Panos book? do you really really want to see his pictures NOT cut in half? are you joking? do you think Panos carefully “composes” in the first place? that is a funny thought….

    c’mon John you would really freak out if this were somehow any kind of “normal” photo book….Anton is a student of Panos, and Panos turned over the final design to him after all of us took a good look and made decisions to make it a trashy cheap fucked up tabloid….again, a mirror of the artist..not some other artist, THIS artist….

    the price? 40 bucks..actually 30 bucks cause free shipping worldwide…the Europeans get a break, the Americans pay a few dollars more…all fair in Panos’ view…and Burn is like a farmers market…everybody does their book the way THEY want..otherwise, what would be the point? so 30 bucks is about 15 British pounds i think, which i am sure is way less than your beer tab last night….right?

    would i expect a Gladdy book to be the same as a Panos book? hell no..perfectly cropped pictures (what pictures?) to be sure….but then again i have come to learn not to expect a Gladdy book…and honestly, for me, that is what is sad….

    always best to sail your own boat….

    cheers, david

  18. I love the mix of the strange and the straight, the effed up and the conventional. Just ordered it, so I can’t comment on the design–but I can’t imagine that Panos would be happy with a Library of American edition of his work. Photographs live beyond their immediate presentation. Who knows what a show or multimedia version or subsequent edition will look like? Congrats to Panos and the BURN team.

  19. Hello,

    I don´t know Panos personally, only through his comments here in Burn, his instagram, his previous pictures of this work… and I didn´t expect anything different to this book, sincerely… I think this book is him… his presentation card..
    I was in Venice Beach 3 years ago and I saw some of the stuff which appears in his pictures… Then, I was totally drawn by the ambience…
    Panos, you have recalled me to a good tale of Bukowski! He could have been one of the characters of your pics…

    Congrats for the book, cheers from Spain!

  20. For my part, I’d like to offer my sincere congratulations to everyone involved. It’s clear that the production of this work is a great accomplishment for the publisher and particularly for the designers and photographer. I saw a much earlier version that looked nothing like the final product, so have little trouble imagining what a design challenge it had to be.

    Whether I like it or not, I don’t know, as I haven’t seen it. I know, however, that I like the idea of it. I have quite a few little zines in my memento box that I’ve collected at various stops along the way, a few including work from unknowns at the time who went on to achieve some amount of recognition (Limonov, Cathy Acker, Laurie Lipton, et. al.) I treasure those more than any well-produced photo book I’ve ever purchased.

    I really don’t want to criticize this particular zine, which again, I haven’t seen, but I do find some of the issues that have been raised interesting and worthy of discussion. The entire concept of producing an expensive publication designed to look like a cheap zine. That makes it inherently inauthentic, though I suppose it can be considered authentic in a different way. In contrast, I’m really impressed with what Nathan Pearce is doing with his little zines. They are inexpensive and definitely not fancy, but the quality is acceptable. I suspect someday his little zines will have a prized place in my memento box like my early Limonov or Lipton.

    I’m not asking for an answer here, but I’m also a bit curious about the decision to print in Italy. With the printing of books, which I know nothing about, I am content to take everyone’s word for it that the Italian printing houses are really that much better. But I do have some history with newsprint and have a bit more trouble believing that a tabloid like Panos’s couldn’t be produced to the same standard here for not a lot of money, relative to the $40 price at least. I have no idea what quantities were involved, but wonder if one of these tabloid things couldn’t be produced simultaneously here and abroad to save some significant shipping costs.

    Anyway, I find those kind of questions interesting for conversation, but have no interest in how I or anyone else might have done it; or how maybe Panos and the Burn crew should have done it. Fact is, they did it as they saw fit and that, in itself, is a great accomplishment. So I’ll end like I started with sincere congratulations to all involved. Especially you, Panos.

  21. All of that printing in italy coz its best nonsense is just that michael. do a blind tasting on your own photobooks and you may well find you prefer german printers, or chinese, or south korean, or italian or german or french….it goes on and on. a heidelburg is a heidelburg no?
    Magnum contact sheets….south Korea
    Don Mcullen ………china
    David bailey duotones. Singapore.
    Bruce davidson……..germany
    Fred Herzog…….China
    Eve Arnold…..THE GOOD OLD USA.
    Eugene Richards……….Italy.

    Thats a selection front a pile in the living room…..and they all look fantastic.
    I guess Being able to be on press and have a rapport with the printer is WAY more important than the country the press resides in.

  22. I can’t wait to hold it in my hands. Panos, I thought I had ordered one. Not sure, though. Too many books in the last months. :)

    Regarding “a heidelberg is a heidelberg”: not sure what Mr. Steidl would say about it.
    If printing was so easy that the machine just does it, I would be a printer.
    However, I assume it is not that easy. Sorry.

  23. John ,
    Also nikos economopulos printed in Istanbul.!!!
    My comment about China shouldn’t be considered racial , plz..
    ( when China decides to stop killing my dog with fake TOXIC plastic toys I’ll stop my “embargo”.. Lol

    On a serious Note I agree with both MW and you.
    But my Ancient Greek mind is always influenced by CLASSIC GREEK and ROMAN ( Italian ) art culture…
    I INSISTED THAT DIEGO and ITALY printers are the perfect way to go!
    It wasn’t easy decision, as MW said , shipping costs RAISES THE PRICE..
    But ive my “obsessions” too.. I wanted an “Italian” book. Around REAL VENICE ITALY.
    VENICE BEACH PRINTED IN VENICE ITALIA.. It all matches in my soul . I want my Greek salad to also have GREEK KALAMATA olives not Chinese olives..
    It’s not about authenticity, it’s about TASTE..

    Also times are CHANGING .. Singapore and Spain do great books ( see new D’Ahara lil book ),
    So yes! Simply it was a choice and yes MW question is very valid and it’ll be my first “headache” printing the “next book”
    IF God forbids allows me to live enough and do another book

  24. I opened my package to find myself insulted and flipped off and then opened up the tabloid to a cacophony of chaos printed on cheap paper with smeared text hard to read. The images tumbled about on each other in a swirl of confusion.

    For a tabloid, the cost was high indeed.

    But then I wasn’t paying for a tabloid.

    I was paying for Panos. Panos delivered Panos.

    I have enjoyed every second I have spent with Panos in Death in Venice, and I have spent more time than usual with this book.

    I got what I paid for – and more.

    Once, I think it was either December 2006 or January 2007 but it might have been a nearby years, I stopped in Venice on a record cold day, about 40 degrees in the afternoon. There were no musclemen, bikini-clad or topless ladies on the beach, no tourists. The only people present were those who had no place else to be, no roof to take shelter under, no heated room to wait out the cold spell in. They beat drums and bongos; they sang, they chanted. In their minds, on this cold day they were the sole owners of and gate-keepers to this public place and they did not welcome a stranger with a camera.

    They were mean and hostile, and actually made me fear for my safety – but I refused to leave. I was not going to let them abridge my rights. But there was one guy. He came to my rescue, befriended me. Kept the others at bay. He wore his black hair long, tied with a red bandana, he was adorned in leather, turquoise and beads. He was tribal – genuine tribal, American Indian, Native American. He rescued me. I was glad of it.

  25. In other words, no I don’t have any scientific proof that ITALY is the only place to print..
    But I’d rather stick with someone like producer Diego ( that he already PROVED himself in his craft whom I trust and respect ), I rather stick with the kid
    that builds Lamborghinis than with a North Korean made scooter

  26. BRIAN , agreed !!

    VIGIL , butthole surfers !!! Yes yes YES!!!
    You know how to enjoy a book! Love u dude.
    You can also stank your big dog if u fold it in half AND kill
    the occasional fly!
    Big hug
    Keep on rocking on

  27. In the meantime I think I accidentally skipped one of the MOST IMPORTANT important,
    Super important BURN CREW PEOPLE that done everything behind the scenes .. EVERYTHING:
    And that is KAYA LEE BURNE
    ( I wouldn’t be able to be in BURNSTORE without her mad mad non stop work

    Speaking of BURNSTORE:
    Dam taram tam tarammmmm
    ( drumroll)..
    Plz welcome the person that is THE HEART AND SOUL of BURNSTORE :

    Thank u Michelle

  28. Thomas Bregulla,
    I’m checking with post office if it stuck in customs.
    Don’t worry buddy, I got your back and resend after u return from Arles .
    So far everything made it to Japan, England , Spain ( VIVA CARLOS FOR FEEDBACK), Israel and many other places … Again don’t worry I got your back.
    If anyone else has a shipment delay plz text me personally at

  29. Dang, I NEVER EVER thought that giving CREDITS IS THE HARDEST PART..
    I just forgot ONCE AGAIN to thank the DISTRIBUTION “center”.. Which is all possible ONLY BECAUSE of the untiring relentless work of
    Ladies and gents big applause to
    ( hoe the hell did I forget my own wife at credits that is a valid BURN CREW member? Don’t ask.
    I’ll blame it to CORONA BEER

  30. a civilian-mass audience

    oime,MY BURNIANS,these Greeks again…

    Suicide or Death…OXI,I choose: DEATH IN VENICE .
    Viva Greece !!!

    GO Universe,Go BURN !!!

  31. Oh , don’t RUSH..
    I have THAT TOO..
    It’s a special EDITION HANDPAINTED
    ( 1 COPY ONLY ) , by famous/infamous PAINTER,
    mrs. BRYSON BROOKS..
    Why u give me all my secrets away ???
    Ha ha!
    Thank u for the plug though !
    So THIS ONE OF A KIND OBJECT ( painter worked on all my photos )
    and recreated HIS vision upon my subconscious soon to be displayed !
    With photos!
    Of course 70% of my friends on Facebook and LOOK3 saw this special edition already!
    But I’m looking for the right collector ..
    I can’t sell less than $8000
    But if I get A REAL OFFER from a SERIOUS collector, I’m willing to talk about it.
    Plz contact me at
    Thank u Imants and all..
    ( although I was keeping it as a surprise, dear Imants put me on the spot!
    Lol. Big hug )

  32. Imants I’ll do this : I’ll send u ANOTHER one and plz MESS WITH IT..
    I also gonna send one to BOB BLACK to COVER IT WITH TEXT…
    U made my day!!!
    I looooooooveeeeee it. Let’s create different UNIQUE COLLABORATIONS

  33. Let’s all have fun and alter things. Like A true band..
    Let’s FUCK WITH THIS publication and let’s alter it. I’m all for it. Fuck traditional press..

    Imants & bob black I’m sending u another copy to “DRESS IT” or “undress it” up…
    I’m also OPEN TO ANYONE ELSE THAT HAS THE TIME , and the creative mind to “fuck/mess” with my publication..
    Let’s do NOT boring stuff

  34. i’ll give you $100 to burn the lot and video it..nothing says ‘Fuck the press’ like a little 451F

    “stercus non potest poliri” As the ancient Romans used to say.

  35. On an almost unrelated note.
    while it may or may not be a shame that the Greek people have decided to follow the rouble (at least they had the balls to look down the barrel of merkels gun and say “fuck you!), it has meant that my stash of Bitcoin/namecoin/DASH/Litecoin has risen over 20% this last week….YAY!…….I may take a holiday……in greece :)

  36. MW

    you are right about the cost of printing a zine like this in Italy…well not the cost of printing, but the cost of shipping which is the killer…shipping in general is the biggest problem with publishing…figuring out ways to keep the shipping cost down is a full on challenge…

    for sure i will be looking at American printers for the future..yet i do not have much confidence in finding one that is going to match our Italian crew..maybe we could have done Panos’ tabloid here in the U.S. ..yet i honestly do not know where.. however there have been many reasons to print in Italy as opposed to China, U.S. etc…in Italy we get real master craftsmen who take a personal interest….yes Italy is more expensive than China, but we are all set up with our Italian printers…and in Italy we can be more easily on press..Diego is there monitoring every single thing, Anton close by in Belgium, and its an easy trip for me to be on press…printing in China would cost us more in airplane tickets than i think we would save in press cost…and somehow having lunch at a sidewalk cafe in Verona while working out last minute details just seems to be the best mood….

    most people who have NOT published imagine that publishing is essentially equivalent to printing…that somehow the printing cost is the biggie…printing cost is nothing compared to all of the other expenses to publish a book…

    one thing for sure …. nobody publishes photo books to make money…’s a break even deal AT BEST…whomever you see trying to make books is doing it for the love of books….i am not saying this to be disparaging…for sure book publishing should be THE goal for any serious photographer …print exhibitions are still the very best way to view photographs….yet they are one time one place “events”…..the most powerful, and the least accessible…part of the beauty of course…books can go everywhere, hence their appeal…

    having said all this i don’t think the price of any book determines whether people buy it or not…if people see value of one type or another, they will buy it….i only look at the prices on rare books…do you really think i care if Alec Soth’s Songbook is 25 or 50 or 75? no…i am going to buy it no matter the cost…not because i want to throw money around …not at all…but photography and books are my life…i just spent 80 bucks to fill up my gas tank!! and how in the world do i justify the miles i will probably waste driving?..heading for my bike!!

    students however do suffer because of book prices..and this i am trying to figure out…if i could come up with a way to make a “student price” i would do it…

    wishing you best Michael and hope your summer is a good one….

    cheers, david

  37. “one thing for sure …. nobody publishes photo books to make money…..”

    Funny; I was thinking along the same lines as to why I want to exhibit. Why anyone would feel the need to put their work up on the wall for others to view and either like or dislike… Robbing Peter to pay Paul to get the prints done, pay for the gallery, some nibbles etc. All to have your work on the walls for a month!

    I suppose it’s the same as doing a book, or getting up on a stage to perform. You do it because you have to… :-)

  38. Years ago I worked for a little printer who got a brand new Heidelberg press. We were one of the first people to get a small, four-up versions where the plates were burned directly on press. So Heidelberg sent an old, German press operator out to help us get it rolling. He looked exactly like you think he would. He was short, bearded, crevices etched in his face, smoked like a chimney, etc. Anyway, we were talking about trapping, and he yelled, “Trapping? Who the hell needs trapping? Why don’t you just print it right? Jesus Christ!”

    Just unearthed that memory and thought it was relevant.

  39. Thanks for the most informative reply, David. As with all my public comments, I am writing for the wind, or for other commenters, never expecting you to spend your valuable time replying to them.

    But having worked in publishing one way or another for almost my entire adult life, I often find the nuts and bolts interesting and I think you understand that my discussing them is in no way any kind of negative criticism. As I said above, I recognize what you all are doing as a great accomplishment.

    As to printing and shipping costs, there actually is a way to get them down to relatively nothing and get a much larger audience to boot. With the constant improvement in screen size, resolution and color accuracy, the experience of viewing photography on a screen will soon be as good as viewing it as a print, if it’s not already. Of course the experience is inherently different, and books and prints will always be worthy media, and I would never suggest that people stop doing it, but I look forward to the day when high end photography becomes available in large format presentations for the screen at a fraction of the cost of paper and ink. It shouldn’t be available for just the well off or those willing to sacrifice just about everything else for their great love of it.

    But back to printing, yes, having a printer who cares and someone on press to work with him or her is essential for getting the highest quality possible. I didn’t mean to suggest that burn be American-centric, just that in the case of a newsprint tabloid, which is going to deteriorate in the best of storage, it might be worth considering different runs on different continents.

    Regarding economics, I certainly respect trade secrets, or just the politesse of not asking friends about financials, so again, I am speaking to the wind. But I can’t help wondering why a publication such as Panos’s would be limited to 1000 copies. After all, the cost of printing a newspaper goes down dramatically with quantity. Is it more profitable to have a limited number just for the sake of having a limited number? Or is the market just that small?

    As for price and profit, I hope when you say you are breaking even that some kind of salary for those who put in the hours doing such skilled work is included in that statement. Though with a maximum return of $40K or so, there’s clearly no way anybody is being paid what their talent and efforts are worth.

    Anyway, good job all around, I’m sure. I look forward to seeing it.

  40. John G

    “I know that’s not how most people see it. But think of it this way: we have just witnessed Greece stand up to a truly vile campaign of bullying and intimidation, an attempt to scare the Greek public, not just into accepting creditor demands, but into getting rid of their government. It was a shameful moment in modern European history, and would have set a truly ugly precedent if it had succeeded.

    But it didn’t. You don’t have to love Syriza, or believe that they know what they’re doing — it’s not clear that they do, although the troika has been even worse — to believe that European institutions have just been saved from their own worst instincts. If Greece had been forced into line by financial fear mongering, Europe would have sinned in a way that would sully its reputation for generations. Instead, it’s something we can, perhaps, eventually regard as an aberration.

    And if Greece ends up exiting the euro? There’s actually a pretty good case for Grexit now — and in any case, democracy matters more than any currency arrangement.”

  41. And yes BITCOIN on the rise…

    Plz check link:

    “….Over the weekend, the Polish exchange Bitcurex got flooded with emails from Greeks. Among their questions:
    “Is Bitcoin a legal currency in EU?”
    “Can I use Bitcurex as a bank account?”
    “Do you have a Bitcoin ATM network in Greece?”
    Bitcurex then started marketing directly to Greeks on its website: “Sign up at Bitcurex and trade for 3 months for free. No Fees for Greece!”

  42. “…I suppose it’s the same as doing a book, or getting up on a stage to perform. You do it because you have to… :-)…”

    Ross , yes yes and yes .. There are some “things” WE ALL DO , because there’s no other way.
    ART is like PREGNANCY…
    We HAVE TO GIVE BIRTH , once pregnant , there’s no way back…

  43. Only little problem ? It’s not that easy to get “pregnant ” with an ART BABY…
    Very very hard.. To me that’s the hardest part: “how can I get in the zone??? for long time and stay motivated , productive ).. I can’t wait to get “pregnant” again !!!!

  44. Panos; As an aside, why didn’t you include the “bleeding head on the floor” image in the slideshow? I reckon it and #18 are your 2 most iconic Venice images….. I’d have those 2 on my wall in a heartbeat….. :-)

  45. The slideshow was another headache Ross..
    I agree with you , but a 10 photo slideshow cannot give the 400 photos feeling of the tabloid …
    I just thought that the photo of the guy “dying on a floor in a venice bar, with his face cut in pieces with a broken beer glass, I thought it was kind of harsh for the slideshow … Or maybe not?
    Either way, the slideshow is just a preview and that’s all…
    But maybe we should add it!why not????
    Unfortunately here in the U.S. are very very conservative…
    I can’t post a single breast without getting BANNED constantly from Instagram and Facebook etc..
    Btw, do u remember 5 years ago
    when BURN POSTED MY “MOTEL PHOTO”?with a shitty TV playing porn in the background???
    We got in DEEP SHIT for that!
    I don’t wanna have Burn shut down due to our CONSERVATIVE sentiment here in the U.S. .
    I know Europe is way more advanced but here everything you do is scrutinized by lawyers and lobbies..
    Dare to post a photo for example, killing an animal and you’ll see what happens…
    All anti hunting organizations will tear u apart.
    We are very polarized here..
    Some see every gun photo as terrorism and every nude photo as PORN.
    You know what SALLY MANN went through for shooting her own kids right? Same with Nan Goldin etc etc…
    I lost a job in Texas once coz the CLIENT went in my Facebook and saw a “half nude” of mine…
    Boom, I lost the job due to a hardcore Christian fundamentalist

  46. Hey IMF/ WALL streeters / euro BANK scum backs !’

    I FORGOt To put you in my credits …
    Oh wait I did!!!

    Here’s my answer to THEIR BULLYING a country half of LA county

    Here it is , enjoy ,

    CAN ANYONE GET ME valid address of Christne Lagard (IMF ), and Merkel/Sarcozy/Hollande etc..
    I wanna send them a FREE COPY . And I only wanna send them the first page and NOTHING ELSE

  47. Either way, the slideshow is just a preview and that’s all… in this multi media obsessed world that should have been a combination of stills and your promo videos that are integral to your work. ……………

  48. July 5, 2015 at 5:21 pm
    I opened my package to find myself insulted and flipped off and then opened up the tabloid to a cacophony of chaos printed on cheap paper with smeared text hard to read. The images tumbled about on each other in a swirl of confusion.

    For a tabloid, the cost was high indeed.

    But then I wasn’t paying for a tabloid.

    I was paying for Panos. Panos delivered Panos.

    BILL, Bill, Bill my dear Bill…!
    I think this is the most flattering comment I’ll ever get in my life !!!

  49. PANOS

    Love your pictures. I can almost pick at random, no. 16, 18, 30…Love them more than your words.But it is all about the pictures, isn’t it? Congratulations!


    you are absolutely correct about good presses in many countries…my Haenyeo (sea women) book is the most beautifully printed book i have done and is printed in South Korea….yet the Magnum Contact Sheets book you mentioned printed/bound in South Korea does not have such a great binding to tell the truth…so it’s not about the country at all but about the tech specs you create…the paper, the binding, etc etc…i would put binding choices at the top of the list of tech specs..and this is where lots of stuff looks good but really has been done in an inferior way…most people don’t notice…until their book comes “unglued” two years down the line..

    the ONLY thing HCB ever wrote to me was “please fix the binding on this was not done correctly”..he was referring to “The Decisive Moment” with the Matisse cover which he had signed for me…

    now that i know a little bit more than i used to know about printing/binding (although NOT an expert) i see that MOST of my books on the shelf even by the masters have inferior production….

    Italy should we say is “one of the best”….

    i am for sure however not locked in on Italy…my first choice would be to print in the USA just because that would be a whole lot easier for me personally..and shipping from Italy to the US is super expensive….Gene Richards did recommend a good press here in US and i almost went with it for Tell It…yet the relationships we have built in Italy, plus the great craftsmanship plus their ability to build special products swayed me back to Italy…and yes, i would rather be spending my down time on press in Italy than in many other places…

    we will never publish many books…publishing a book is a nice option for us in the right circumstances and MOSTLY if we can discover a new talent…i am sure we will look at all options with printers in the future….

    cheers, david

  51. MW

    sure everyone who is working gets paid…and yes, that is part of our production costs..

    a thousand copies is a lot…and if Panos sells more, then we can go to a second edition quite easily….it is always a gamble when to cut off the presses…as you say cost per copy drops the more you print…still you need to store these books somewhere…that costs….so all factors are taken into consideration on the press run…

    i do not share your enthusiasm for the computer screen…yes it is how i see most pictures most of the time…on my phone in fact….the computer screen, like an iPad, does render already pictures with more definition and fidelity etc than any printed page can reproduce…press printing is the most inferior way to see pictures reproduced…iPad better….inkjets better…..yet still that tactile quality beckons for me anyway…for some reason i am more drawn these days to zines more than books however…big heavy books i just don’t look at more than once or twice…right now i walk around my house…i pick up the small books or the zines….Sam Harris’ new Middle of Somewhere is perfect and “user friendly” compared to the Magnum Contact Sheets book which is too cumbersome to actually view…it is a great book to be sure…like Nachthwey’s Inferno, but i don’t open it… still love love Luc Delahaye, Wintereise for user friendly and for narrative..that cannot be on a computer screen…just can’t…

    cheers, david

  52. IMANTS

    “Either way, the slideshow is just a preview and that’s all… in this multi media obsessed world that should have been a combination of stills and your promo videos that are integral to your work. ”

    i agree 100%…and no reason that still will not be a result….but Panos must do it….or you do it for him……


    i hear you…i just spent essentially three months at least full on to make a 65 60×40 inch print show…it was up for two weeks….then gone forever…..comparable to theater or concert presentation in the sense of one time experience…if you weren’t there you just weren’t there….yet the power of these prints on the wall is incomparable to any other photo experience ..for both photographer and viewer….and even though up for only a short time, still more people saw those prints than will ever see the same pictures in a book….for LOTS of people to see your work, there is only Instagram….for the BEST way to see your work, there is only an exhibition…yes, you just have to…..

    cheers, david

  54. David; I have to admit that when I had my first exhibition last year the most surreal experience was actually seeing them all around on the walls. Previously I had only seen them on screen (except for el-cheapo work prints)

    Next months exhibition will be different again; more prints, a bigger space and more polarising content. I’m aiming for 20-30% liking it and the rest going “WTF”; either disliking it or at the very least maybe making them think about it for a while…. I’m really looking forward to the varying feedback!


    if you don’t like something you see on the wall, can’t you just take it down? or is this curated by someone else?

    whatever you do, please don’t have something up on the wall you do not like…that makes no sense….for sure with magazines nobody ever likes quite the way they turn out…yet usually one is contracted for magazine work and simply learns to live with it because they got paid to do it…yet an exhibition must be 100% approved by you!!

  56. ‘yet an exhibition must be 100% approved by you!!’ Absolutely Amen. I think a lot of people give away control of how their images are shown because they really really want to their work be seen and are worried that being assertive may lose them the gig. I say better to lose the gig than allow the work to not be how you need it to be.
    There are (nearly) always more gigs.

  57. David/John; I probably made that statement a bit fuzzy! Geez; and I’m paid to write…… ;-)

    The upcoming exhibition is 100% approved by me and I have total control. I have my preferred space in the gallery and I’m certain it’s right.

    What I meant is that the work may be different to what a lot of viewers here in NZ will have seen. And by it’s nature will be a bit polarising. It’s the same work I recently showed you (David). Sorry for the confusion!

  58. “yet still that tactile quality beckons for me anyway”

    DAH – For someone that has spent his entire adult life working 8+ hours a day editing images, I too find the tactile element of a printed page very alluring. I’m not entirely sure what it is. Maybe it’s that it involves multiple sensory input-sight, feel, plus the sound of the turning page and the smell of fresh ink that has a nostalgic element to it. There’s substance. Somebody had to WANT you to see it to have spent the effort and money to put it in printed form. It’s not meant to be dismissed as quickly as clicking on the next image in the slideshow. There’s finality. As it appears on the printed page is how it was meant to be seen.

    I’m sure I’ve told this before, but on my trip to NY to meet with editors for potential work, I made a blurb book portfolio and used that as a leave behind. Every single person commented that it was refreshing to have something printed presented to them instead of a laptop.

    Speaking of books, please allow me to be crass and plug my kickstarter to get a book published ;-)


    i am off to Arles for a few days, but back July 13 or so….let’s try to communicate a bit about your book at some point in July….and good luck with Kickstarter …i have never done one, but so many seem quite successful with it…for one thing it gives you at least some idea of how your idea will fly…and the one thing for sure about a book as opposed to magazines or exhibits or the social media, people must want to BUY your book…it is a very different way of thinking than getting an assignment for example where the publication itself is already sold…yes books and prints are the same in that way…yes you must sell…seems like a downside in one way but on the other hand if somebody actually wants to purchase a print or a book, in the long run this feels the best of anything …it is your own personal brand that someone has deemed worth of purchase all by itself…on its own…no other “brand”attachments….

    all best, David

  60. DAH – Seriously, when do you sleep? The week of the 13th, I am off work ,so that would be great.

    As far as Kickstarter goes, success is only partially attributable to how good the project is. Yes if the idea sucks and/or the campaign page sucks, you have no chance. But even Kickstarter says that most funding will come from friends and family. Additionally, if a photographer is already well-known and has a big following, there’s a lot broader pool from which to draw.

    Of course there’s also a bit of a philosophical question to ponder as well. If the broad appeal of an artistic project is what’s needed to be successful, then isn’t the art form (whatever that may be) reduced to the lowest common denominator? Of course businesses need to pay the bills, but it would be a shame if only Katy Perry types were allowed to make music.

  61. Seems to me that the comments are quite construcive just because someone does not particulary care for some aspects does not equate to negativity

  62. David, I don’t a copy of Panos’ book / thing, so I can’t comment there. However, I was wondering what made you pick the size you did for the reprint of Tell It Like It Is? I agree that the size of Sam’s book is wonderful, and completely fits in with the photographs contained, and that Contact sheets just ends up sitting on a shelf while I often pull out the likes of Minutes to Midnight, the reprint of Exiles, or (maybe getting on the larger size) Gypsies.

    So what are your thoughts on user friendliness, is it just size? Or more weight to comfortably hold? I think I read here that you prefer softbound books, is that because they’re more comfortable to sit with / lighter?

    To many questions!

  63. Panos, you are so messed up! Don’t ever go straight!!

    Screw the critics. This thing is all Panos.

    A little Wallace Stevens kind of says it…

    “The man bent over his guitar,
    A shearsman of sorts. The day was green.

    They said, “You have a blue guitar,
    You do not play things as they are.”

    The man replied, “Things as they are
    Are changed upon the blue guitar.”

    And they said then, “But play, you must,
    A tune beyond us, yet ourselves,

    A tune upon the blue guitar
    Of things exactly as they are.”

  64. MITCH !!!
    Thank u sir

    BILL right back at you !

    Your last questions to DAH , awesome… Can’t wait for answers too …

    Ha ha yes when does that “guy” sleeps ?

    Totally agree , no negativity at all..
    So many things we can all do, collaborate , that’s my dream , to collaborate..

    yes , I agree , I was born a rock star , it has nothing to do with photography …;)

    PERFECT!!!! Speaking of “rock stars” , I’m in need of this BLUE GUITAR… ASAP .
    Thank u sir !

  65. Just bought my copy! :)

    So happy and proud of Brother P….

    actually, I’m a bit dismayed by some of the ‘criticism’….and don’t quite have the energy write not to write up a response…..or rather, i’ll just wait until the book is a bit whiskey stained in my hands…

    but i’ll just leave it at this:

    one of my favorite books and most inspiring was Gerard Fieret’s “Foto en Copyright by G.P. Fieret”…cigrarette stained, torn, printed on newsprint and poor quality and wow, does it ever sing….solitary and singular and bitingly sad….heroic too for what it represents and what his life suggested…..

    the madness of the pursuit of life…

    sometimes a photography book is just another trumped up binding of pictures to showcase how ‘great’ the photographer’s eye or placement or deranged ego…and sometimes a book is just another voice in the dark, because, fuck me, if we don’t learn to sing out to ourselves, who will ever listen or give a damn, and most won’t anyway…

    sing it and fuck it and crop it and annhilate it the way you wish Panos…and let other’s bemoan…that ain your austerity program to pay attention to, you’ve got the living of your own life to do…

    biggest of hugs :)

    here is an article btw on Gerard Fieret:

  66. DAVID “perfectly cropped pictures (what pictures?) to be sure….but then again i have come to learn not to expect a Gladdy book…and honestly, for me, that is what is sad.

    what Pictures?. Hey Amigo, dont mistake not sending pictures in to burn with not making pictures.

    shot over 2 evenings this week, for THENEWBRITISH (September) print edition. many friends and colleagues of yours in this issue too I believe.
    Speakers corner essay also in this issue.

    They are not demanding captions….which is nice :)

  67. John, I wasn’t planning on it but now that I know I’ll hop on the Wednesday AM flight over the pole so I can join in the heckling. Fun! It will be fun! And I will freely photograph it all on my iPhone.

  68. Gladdy :)

    hahahah…forgive me, been drinking whiskey and planning on book shit, but YEA :)…HAHAH, beloved/quoting of Stevens smells of having been laid :)

    and I must say (again, the whiskey and doctor and other shit), i think one of thinks that I love about Panos (and i’ve sat in a room with him late into the night) is that I know he took your ‘criticism’ and ‘sadness’ not with judgment or jealousy or dendrite shit but took as it as something quite different (maybe I’m different even than David in this respect because I dont get upset about judgment) but as someone who is NOT AT ALL DIFFERENT from Panos…actually, i read your comments in the same way …..that is, in many ways, the 2 of you seem the same to me: 2 cats who wear your diseased, loving hearts outer-sized on your chests :)…..even if in different ways ;)…

    anyway, ok, must run to call my lady in Taiwan…

    and maybe, must maybe, I maybe the only fucked up photographer who actually had a book go to publication, review of shit and all, and pull it back, reject it, and cover all the $$ for that (dont remind me) and walk away…( I couldnt publish that book in the middle of a divorce)..and so maybe that is why i understand both Panos and Gladdy….

    in the end, isnt it how one chooses to show that matter ;)

    and yes I think, for sure Jim got laid…and god bless him for that ;)

    ok, running away again for a time…

    hugs all, bastards :)


  69. Panos…
    I’ve been fighting this work too many days. My first feeling was full out rejection. I just don’t usually like fanzines… I was expecting something else. For some odd reason the same was happening with the images in the slideshow. But I kept coming back quietly every afternoon looking at the slideshow and reading all the comments on the work. Hoping to see the light. I don’t like hurrying things, so I’ve taken my time with this essay. You deserve it…
    This morning, after giving your images a last chance look before giving up it all, suddenly everything clicked into place. .. Of course it had to, well at least the slideshow… Your images, now they rock me. I must of been in the wrong mood or groove, partly because now I’m deep into BW and all Tell it like it is. Now I see eyeball kicks throughout your essay and I think the slideshow is just way way too short. I want to see more images. It’s all Panos, true to the bone. You’re good, very very good.
    I don’t thint there’s anything insane or crazy about you at all. You’re one smart guy with huge heart and soul who’s capacity for feeling is always 110%. Smiling. .. I’d love to be mentally as sane as you are…
    However the fanzine style still doesn’t convince me, but I will buy it… or at least once my kids get back from summer school and my bank account recovers from the summer school holidays.
    And now what Panos? Is this the final chapter of Death In Venice? Are you going to try something else?
    Btw you must read that book John Gladdy is sending, you it’s absolutely brilliant. I’ve read it three times. I’m useless at writing so I just can’t begin to explain how it hit me so heavily…

  70. However, in a unrelated matter, there is this…

    I know that Ariana Grande’s declaration that she hates America should offend me greatly, but since I’d never heard of her before she said that she hated America I would say that she has accomplished the purpose of her saying she hated America in the first place: I have now heard of her. I still have no idea what she does, but then I don’t get out much. I gather that she is some kind of entertainer, which actually covers a lot of ground—entertainers these days run the gamut from opera singers to baseball players to presidential candidates to porn stars, that she is fairly young, and that I am probably not her target demographic. She may even, for all I know, stand nude on her head atop the Army—Navy recruiting station in Times Square and spit nickels at the gawking crowds of tourists in the street below. Nickel spitting was very big in the 1920’s, but fashions come and go, and so nickel spitting went the way of Prohibition, the Charleston, and the bee’s knees. This is unfortunate, I think; when I was a boy, you could still see nickel spitters from the Twenties plying their art at street fairs and carnivals, but they had no followers, no novices eager to learn the arcane intricacies of the art, and so nickel spitting had died out by the end of the first Bush presidency. I wish it hadn’t; nickel spitting was fun to watch. There are few arts that provide as much artistic fulfillment to the artist and financial reward to the audience as nickel spitting does. But I digress.

    In any case, the fact that Ariana Grande hates America is, for me, one of life’s great irrelevancies, right up there with knowing that aglets are those plastic tips at the end of your shoelaces. The word may or may not have something to do with Texas A&M and that university’s football team, the Aggies, but probably does not; cowboy boots do not have shoelaces so the connection to Texas seems tenuous at best, and it does not seem likely that the university would name a girl’s team the Aglets. That sort of name smacks of sexism and there is nothing that a modern American university wants to avoid more than anything else nowadays than someone accusing it of an –ism. –Isms are very bad, you see, and lead to upset stomachs and probably gas as well and therefore best avoided in the first place, if at all possible.

  71. And a special edition with a FULL BLUNT rolled inside the package ( but so far I can only sell it to Colorado and few states ( where medical marihuana is legally available )

  72. @david Bowen

    THANK YOU !!!

    I’m sending u an extra one so YOU can fill it up with poems/collages/photos/text , anything
    and create a BOB BLACK version!

  73. Equally not about anything at all…

    I do not play golf. I also do not play pinochle, but that is neither here nor there. Many people do not play pinochle and no one thinks any the less of them or that they are racists because they do not. I have heard that playing canasta is a good sign of latent homophobia, but I have never seen any credible evidence of this and so the next time you hear this, you may want to ask the person making this statement where they got their information. Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence, as the late Carl Sagan used to say, and linking canasta playing and homophobia strikes me as a very extraordinary claim indeed. In any case, I still do not play golf.

    I bring the subject up because here in our happy little burg signs are going up everywhere that the fire department will have its annual charity gold tournament at the end of the month and they are charging golfers $125 to participate. The signs do not indicate if this fee includes lunch and a free beer, although it should, as this seems like an awful lot of money to ask for the privilege of tapping a small ball into a small cup. Now, I understand that there are people who enjoy this sort of thing—I have two brothers who follow golf religiously, for example—but I should point out that golf is a Scottish invention, like the steam engine and the telephone, and nothing good can come from a people who think haggis is an actual foodstuff or that bagpipes are, in some vague way, a musical instrument (they aren’t, not really, and neither is the pot of boiling water you drop your cat into to get rid of its fleas, which is the bagpipes’ closest sonic equivalent.)

    Of course, for the privilege of playing this odd game—an activity played largely by men who appear to be bulking up for a sumo competition hardly qualifies as a sport—the true addict will shell out truly ridiculous sums of money and gets very little in return for that money. Given that I do not play golf, a fact I mentioned earlier, I believe, I would ordinarily not care one way or the other about how much otherwise normal human beings will pay to knock a small ball into a small cup after hours of wandering around a faux Scottish bucolic setting. It is, however, in the nature of obsessives to want to spread their obsession to the non-obsessed and this, as it always does, becomes a matter of some contention between them and the people that they are annoying the hell out of (yes, I ended a sentence with a preposition. Go stuff it.)

    All of which complaining leads me to this conclusion: if you, the you in this case being my golf mad brothers and their equally golf mad friends, want me to take an interest in your little ball fetish then certain changes must take place, changes that are not in any way negotiable. First, we stop playing this idiotic game on golf courses and start playing it in war zones. The never terribly interesting question of whether or not a player will make par or a birdie or an eagle or whatever the hell it is they do out there with their little balls and cups will be much more interesting if everyone involved has to pass through a minefield and/or a barrage of incoming artillery fire in order to get to the ball. Another possibility is that we replace the sand traps and the water obstacles with striking Teamsters. Players who drive their balls into the Teamsters’ picket lines will have to devise new strategies to get the ball into the cup while at the same time keeping the Teamsters from a.] beating the ever living crap out of them for crossing a picket line, you dirty little scab, or 2.] beating the ever living crap out of them for hitting one of the union brothers on the head with your ball, you stupid jerk. I think that would be much more interesting to everyone involved than the game everyone plays today. I think I’d even pay $125 to see, and maybe try my hand at the game a little, provided, of course, that the lunch and the beer were free. Hey, if I’m going to take a chance with an artillery barrage then the least the sponsors can do is pay for lunch and beer. It’s only fair, you know.

  74. Im also aware that the Beatles are $0.99 per song in iTunes ,
    But I still prefer the vinyl version ( that’s only made to perform perfect the first 20 times )
    and then kaput :)

  75. What????
    You can only play a super expensive vinyl record LP , 20 times????
    That’s it????
    Yup !
    After that “wear and tear” most high frequencies go bye bye …:(

  76. a civilian-mass audience

    Dearest PANOS, our Crazy Grecoman,

    Grecolandia is next to YOU …Go amigo !!!

    Viva BURN, viva BURNIANS,THANK YOU ALL…”Death in Greece” is official…


  77. Greece is Europe’s bitch now.

    ……a low class garbage paper. And you come to that conclusion how exactly? From seeing ONE article online that you didnt like?

  78. LADIES AND GENTLEMEN, I’m very very happy to announce an important, a very very important decision in my life !!!
    After almost a quarter of century living in VENICE BEACH CALIFORNIA (and after a few years exploring the Republican Texan South) , I’m MOVING TO NEW YORK !!!
    Yes yes yes yes !!! U heard me well.. New home at the Big Apple …
    Why? Not only because it’s the most AMAZING city in this planet and since my photography REQUIRES me to be there , but it was always my dream since a child
    !!! It’s about time ..I visited NYC million times , BUT never needed to live there. Beach bums hate snow.. Lol..
    CanT wait to reunite with all my NYC friends and colleagues!

  79. My work in Texas and South is finished !!!
    I hope next year yall gonna see ( in print ) what the hell I was doing here…
    soon in a bookshelf near you!
    Love you all

  80. Don’t worry Gladdy ! Scotland will soon teach u a lesson . Arrogance and hate won’t take that little island u live on that far .. Glory days are over . Ghandi shut that fake empire down , I know it hurts but life is life … Just wait and see . You gonna love it

    Anyway as I said , FIRST WE TAKE MANHATTAN then WE TAKE BERLIN …
    If u know what I mean ;)
    Stay healthy my brother and remember: Anger can get u arteriosclerosis ( Greek word )

  81. Ok , since I’m done with my “BITTERNESS KILLS” lecture to my buddy ,time
    To talk about important things ! Exciting things..
    Sooooo, I got one more surprise for yall ..
    Firstly a ROADTRIP IS REQUIRED. I wanna do one last drive from Texas to EAST COAST
    and share it with you FOR FREEEEEEE….this month ..
    Why? Coz I love you all..
    I’m so motivated I can’t sleep

  82. PANOS

    as you can see the copyright catchers will get you in a heartbeat these days for using music tracks without license….Magnum also now has this same technology to find illegal use of pictures, so it is all to our advantage in the photo industry which demands the same proprietary artistic rights as does the music industry…music tracks can be used for classroom use etc. but the minute it is online it is considered commercial…..even in the comment section of Burn…

    cheers, david

  83. On an unrelated note, sad news for Nick Cave whose son died yesterday. Is just awful. So to commemorate, one of my favorite songs of his:

  84. copyright catchers stifle creativity, communication etc unless you are apple, YouTube etc then you do as you please… pay out if there is a problem and then squeeze the claimant out of the system… streaming services squeeze the independent artist into a crappy audio broadcasting system

    ……… but that’s what artists fought for copyright but probably didn’t expect the big boys to beat them up in the process see the the creative lawyer

  85. Good information, Panos. Thanks! I think I’m going to get it and still keep multiple copies here… got so many hard drives right now its crazy…

  86. IMANTS

    Richard Prince would agree with you, yet many would not….Picasso’s famous line “great artists steal” i think does have a limit….i think the copyright catchers are going after the “big boys” and publications with money who have stolen a photographer’s picture….in the process some relative innocents get busted for not much reason i agree….how guilty is guilty? gray line? hard line? i do disagree though about getting a lawyer…..that my friend would eat up all creative thinking….lawyers are absolutely necessary at times…but as my lawyer brother says “avoid us if you can”

    cheers, david

  87. Ross, I always put everything I take on at least two hard drives and now that I’m a building a multiple Drobo system at least three. Yet, awhile back, I discover that one of my original hard drives had somehow gone missing, but I still had the backup. Later, as I was doing a big hard drive sort and search, stacking hard drives here and there, I sat the backup hard drive aside so I could duplicate it when I was done. Then, when I was done, I could not find the backup drive. I moved and picked up EVERYTHING in my office at least five times. Never found it.

    That doesn’t mean everything is lost because I tend to put edited photos in multiple places besides the original drive, but what I have discovered is that I can come back to a take months to years later and discover that I overlooked even the best images.

  88. Anyway, I posted before I finished. My hope now is that one day I inadvertently find the hard drive, either original or backup, just as you inadvertently found your new drive. You give me hope I might.

  89. Yes , Moby and few other COOL artists are donating their music and actually they ASK artists (see Vimeo ) to submit / enrich with their video clips the artist’s vision.
    As always it’s not the artist that creates the problem but the big corporate music industry behind it :(

  90. some thoughts of Death in Venice

    What i cherish most in people is what I most cherish most in the abacus of life: courage.

    What I cherish most in artists (though I am loathe to qualify the making of things as if a difference from the living of things) is courage, obsessiveness, focal-pricking of self. And above all the obsessions that artists may have, the matters the most to me (as both of maker of thinks and a live’r of things and a love’r of things) is this small bit: one’s obsession with self, one’s determinant need to focus on the life that makes sense, or senselessness, of their own life. For far from narcissism, or navel gazing, it seems to me that the person most obsessed with their own life, with their reckoning and reconciliation of their own meandering and loss, is in actually the person that is most determined to bit into the living. To life. To care about the self is the beginning of caring about being alive and from that one can only begin to care outwardly. How so often wrong this equation has fallen.

    What I love about Panos’ project is in fact the antithesis of what I find so unfulfilling and tedious about most of the ‘photography books’ that I look at or am asked to buy or write about for in truth many of them perform a kind of deceit couched in a nomenclature of photographic evidence or skill or predictable accessiblity. In a word: beauty or fame. The work that has often spoken the most profoundly to me is work that shears that need to call attention for accolades, the need to dance up some romantic and easily digestable appreciation. A photo book, what on earth does that mean?

    It is clear to me that Death in Venice is not at all a book of photographs nor is it a composite of a narrative, nor is it a celebration of the medium (as most countenance) but is in fact a much more profound and much sloppier and much more beautiful creature. It is in fact, a rejection of the all that is easy, more so now than ever before: a sequence of pretty (or not) pictures that are strong together like so much beautiful laundry that beckons the ‘oooohs and aaahhhs’ of appreciation. All that I have grown tired of in photobooks/sequences, is left aside. Some of Panos’ most ‘strong’ photographs are cut in half, or lost in their juxtaposition with others, so that in truth this is a book comprised not of a sequence of pictures but of something more personal and for me something more courageous: a kind of howl, a rejection of both the idea of picture taking as substitute for life, as witness of life and as easy story.

    To the contrary, it is a broken mess and in that extraordinary broken mess comes something much more rich and much more personal: his life, your life, all all lives. Witness the story tell who carves out their own story as nakedness. See all those who seek to make a book and from that book garner awards and attention and accolades. The tedium of narcism cloaked in a dress of finery and attention getting surplus.

    Once we were lonely. Once we were children scavering the dirt and woods and beaches and halls of what made joy, even if it were sloppy and how quickly so many of us so that off for recognition and the need to be praised. There is not a single thread of contingency in this book or magazine or newspaper or wall poster but reckless joy and reckless sadness and the most critical truth: that this book, rather than create a hierarchy of beauty instead just breathes life: beauty and sloppiness and madness. Not the madness of the insanity of predictability but the insanity of generosity. It’s all there in that place and in that ability not to be judgmental.

    Give me the person who says: ecce homo, ecce domos….give me the person who is willing to take ridicule and imperfection and fever, for that is the courage of the living.

    this is not about the courage of art. this is about the courage of living.

    get past your neat boxes. get past your aesthetic sensibilities.

    this is not a Zine in the way that some of the readers have thought of it. This is something simpler and more joyous. This is not about photography and thank fucking god.

    this is about a certain amount of courage. and that courage is in fact about the living that he found around him as well, the courage to unapologetically shelter and shinter and shin.

    fuck the essay about the ‘famous people’ in the beginning of the zine. that is predictable, and had i seen it prior, i would have said, ‘fuck that nonsense’ for this book needs no essay.

    gun it. bleed it. welp it up against the sea.

    name it and it shall name it back.

    one of my favorite books of the year. not because it is forwards photography but because it rejects photography in the breath of something else.

    call it the mayhem and the quiet and the unapologetic light of the living


  91. sorry not to dissect it cogently, for that would be simple….but the fact that a picture sequence takes some of its most strong ‘photographs’ and clovens them (think how beautifully that muscle competition shot is broken and strong between pages or the emotional pictures of spent lives are bound up in small frame against the quotidian) is just an example of how reckless and how honest this work is….

    very few books of pictures strike me as honest…not because they’re deceitful but because so many photographers are dishonest with themselves, that their pictures themselves yield meaning, tell a story of the world, or replace the living by their cold, steel hands of righteous, carefully framed and carefully thought out compositions and sequencing….

    there is so much to live, so much to gather in how to speak of and on things and this is one way…and that so many seemed to have turned their backs on this piece, shows me again, how caught up most of the photo world is in pointing attention to their skill or the skill of a box….

    those who have ever listened to a story, or focused on what someone tells them, or gamboled along a street and tried to take in the surrounding understand that any neat representation of that is a lie…and all one can go is struggle against that or stand up and say, this is what i’ve done and seen and lived…

    Panos talks about pirates…maybe that is a pretense, but i’ll take the conversation overheard, or the scribble on the wall, or the late-night mis-spoken word, over any easily calculated speech…

    it aint pretty pictures but by god, it is as clean an attempt to howl about a life…

    Whitman is ogasmiastic in his grave…..

    but then again, Daniel Johnson speaks more to me than U2….

  92. btw, everything i typed above, i scribbled on the last 2 pages of Robert Stone’s ‘flag for sunrise’….i didnt want to edit/correct…just wanted write something i thought while eating over a beer while that damn over-sized think i got today took up 2 bar stools…maybe that is the best tribute….

    ok, off for the night

  93. Bob Death in Venice needs to be taken that next step otherwise it stays in the same realm as Rolling Stone a publication that is only a part of what it is about

  94. MW…
    No I totally and absolutely disagree. Just because it’s Johnny Cash does it mean it’s any good. For gods sake he sounds like he’s reading a shopping list.

  95. Imants: yes, totally agree. i was just reacting to the publication itself. I prefer it, by far, to any online presentation….as Panos as imagined, it also evolves into an exhibition, plastering the walls, unfolding it, etc,….but as a publication, it works as a kind of refutation to a typical publication but most importantly, it sweats and breathes completely Panos and the work itself…a kind of refutation of street photography too, even though it is totally Street….i love it :)

  96. Bob…
    Why do you see Panos images are a refutation of street photography? I’m very curious about your thoughts on this.
    What I see is authorship throughout this work. There’s something very Panos on all of his images. It’s like some people’s handwriting which stands out a mile.

  97. Paul, I picked that link because it had the lyrics, which imo are excellent, probably one of the better written pop songs of all time, but it’s true I also think Cash’s performance has a depth and emotional resonance that adds significantly to the quality of the song. Reasonable people can, of course, disagree.

    And I thought it fit as opposition to Bob’s link to a crappy song sung crappily. I’m not above appreciating people with lesser technical talent surpassing those with great technical skill through great passion (I’ll still take punk rock over prog), but that just ain’t the case with that clip. Does a disservice to Panos’s work as well and the production values of the book, all of which is better by multiples than the taxicab thing.

  98. Paul,

    The refutation of street photography comes from an exchange on Facebook with Bob. Here’s what I said:

    “Raw deserves raw for sure! What I love to is that it’s a a big f.u .to the whole trend of amateur ‘street photography’ and all of their goddamn workshops in order to photograph people on their cell phones, and upgrading their cameras every month because the camera will take ‘better pictures’ (therefore removing the actual photographer him/herself from the equation). Its all about living and doing it, no matter the outcome.”

    Best, CP

  99. And when I first received DIV, I too was a bit taken aback at the medium. Until I opened it that is and then, as many have said on here, it became clear that this is totally PANOS. I can’t leave it laying on our coffee table, but I hope many do. I too am tired of the precious nature of most/many photography books, which is a challenge as I’m currently on the early early design stages of making another myself from archival material (Nirvana) and certainly don’t want to be precious about it yet it will need to be a viable commercial product. A conundrum that fortunately it seems PANOS didn’t have to (or want to) deal with and he was free to do what suited the material and his soul/personality/gonzo-ness.

  100. MW: do you know who Daniel Johnston is?….his history, his songs, his songwriting…and what his condition is in that cab?….if not, i suspect you find out, or should at least, to understand exactly why i chose him…..crappy song, eh….jeez…

    PAUL: the refutation reference, as CP mentioned, came from a chat he and Panos and i were having. Panos is PURE STREET. what i meant to suggest is that so often now ‘street’ means shoot anything without a developed sense of place (street photography, in its finest form is deeply connected to place) but also, so much street also turns itself inside out: street work and then produce a ‘fine/beautiful’ detail of that…in other words, refutation of NOT the practice itself but how much of it is conceptualized now….anyway, no time to write now….but, yes, panos is pure street and that publication is absolutely pure Panos as a person and as a photographer, which is what i loved about it….i didnt say his photographs were refutation but the publication…you have it: it’s old-school street, diy….maybe i wasnt precise enough….


    very well said BOB….you are right on it….

    if i have any misgivings about Panos (other than his super destructive lifestyle) is that i cannot help but look at any art or artist in context of WORK…in other words all that you say is true YET this work stands alone…nothing before it, and more to my dismay, nothing after….several times here on Burn, Panos has said “i waited 5 years for this book”….waited….that part is odd to me…and that part worries me…at the very same time i do celebrate DIV in the same way that do you…and maybe that is enough….i just feel he should be halfway through his next book….and i do not see anything close to that happening….on the other hand, maybe one great book is enough…we will see…

  102. No Bob, even now that I’ve looked into it, I don’t see why you’d choose that. Strikes me as all wrong on several levels. Having read the lyrics, perhaps “crappy” was a bit harsh, but I’d stills say they’re a long way from great. And it doesn’t strike me as Panos’s kind of thing, either. More this:

    But hey, that’s okay Bob. I respect your opinion. Seems to me this is another one of those things about which reasonable people can disagree.

  103. Bob and Charles…
    we generally all begin our photograpgic journeys inspired by our heroes and our early work has little to do with our own lyrics. I’m sure there are a few exceptions.
    The thing is, it takes an inordinate amount of shooting to sing one’s own song. An unhealthy amount I’m sure my wife would add. This the big hurdle for most. It suddenly ain’t so cool going out everyday and not coming back with a decent image. But Panos’ did go out always even when life was at it’s the worst for him. His obsessive daily magic light non stop shooting with his faithful M8 hanging round his neck is legendary. He once mentioned he could of never have done this work with film. This is the way, a constant unrelenting search and has nothing to do as you both quite rightly mentioned with attending a workshop or buying the latest megapixel camera.

  104. the creative lawyers are important to the economy of the arts……… so many artists don’t make money thus they are merely consumers of our resources. A creative lawyer quite rightly exploits this to feed his/her family…….

  105. BOB BLACK

    does it really come down to Daniel Johnston OR U2? any reason why BOTH cannot be appreciated? i love the Daniel Johnston story….and his work….truly down there on the street…moving….

    at the same time should we really hold the popularity of U2 against them?

    Daniel is a genius but so is Bono…..different drives different goals different outcomes, but truth is they’ve both made a mark…and i am not ever ever looking at popularity nor financial resources as any kind of measure of artistic achievement….nor of “making a mark”….a mark is a mark….the plastic aura around the “fame”or the lack of it in the case of Daniel are both simply “created” by somebody other than the artist…Bono has his publicist and so does Daniel…none of it affecting the actual “work”… having said all this i too would rather be listening to Daniel than to U2 (not my fave band)…they were your example…..better to compare Daniel with Bob Dylan…..both down in the dirt get you in the gut types…Daniel relatively unknown (now made famous by being unknown!!)..Dylan rich and famous in the traditional get ahead get known way….but isn’t Dylan actually really GOOD? both writing and performing….he’s not just rich and famous…he’s actually done very great work and if he had not become “popular” for sure he woulda been just as happy sitting in the back of that taxi as Daniel Johnston….at least this is what i would like to think about Mr Bob D…rhymes with Mr. Bob B

    cheers, david

  106. MW…
    I’m into total agreement about the beauty of those lyrics. But I still disagree with Cash’s version. Now if I’ve no choice give me any day Cash singing Personal Jesus and Jim Marshall’s portrait of Cash flipping the bird. Anyway there’s something about Panos which reminds me deeply of Jim Marshall.

  107. Paul, Bob et. al., no offense intended. I think it’s kind of fun to match music with photographs. All of my essays have theme songs. That recent blue one, for example, is set to Otis Taylor’s “Ten Million Slaves.” As Panos gets so excited about certain bands or people from time to time, and Jim Morrison has a prominent place in Venice history, and Crawling King Snake has a vibe that works with the photos I’ve seen, I’m guessing Panos wouldn’t think it is too far off. Could be wrong, of course.

    David makes a good point about artists and how it’s not some kind of contest in which both can’t be equally appreciated. But again, when it comes to soundtracks, some music works better with some images than others. Dylan is really good. So was Johnny Cash. Put either of them in that taxi with an acoustic guitar and the result could well be transcendental. Still, the result wouldn’t work as a soundtrack for plenty of slideshows. Phillip Glass, on the other hand, works for just about anything, though in the taxi with an acoustic guitar situation, the driver might go into some kind of trance and run off the road, so it probably wouldn’t be a good idea.

    I didn’t mean to imply that I’m a big U2 fan (nor that I hate them, for that matter). Fact is, I bought Achtung Baby when it came out and don’t think I even noticed “One.” If I did, I certainly forgot about it for roughly 20 years. It wasn’t until I heard the Johnny Cash version that I understood the greatness of the song. Doesn’t work for you Paul? That’s okay. You have good taste. We can’t all agree about everything.

    “so many artists don’t make money thus they are merely consumers of our resources.”

    Who is this “our” and how did they come by those resources of which you speak. Why does it include you and not Vincent Van Gogh?

  108. DAH,

    Regarding our pal Panos and his body of WORK. Its a conundrum when somebody’s art is so tied up in a destructive lifestyle. On one hand the art is their savior, and on the other unsustainable if the life itself is to be saved. It can also be hard (sometimes nay impossible) to follow up such a passionate burst as DIV. So I wouldn’t be too worried or hard on Panos about this. Some, like yourself, have string after string of hits, others just one big one that sustains them their whole life. I know that I work slower than most, and that’s okay with me. I’ve also had a lifetime of chronic pain – that, like addictive tendencies, can also slow down ones output greatly. But I also feel that many today should take more time with their projects. Five years doesn’t seem that long to me. And perhaps the time was right when it wouldn’t have been before. Perhaps its like a great bottle of wine – pen it too early and the taste isn’t what you’d expect. Lots of factors in play here. Hopefully with Panos move to NY you can set him on the path to more work. People constantly ask me what I’m working on, as if I should be doing something grand and earth shattering when I’m often just trying to make it from day to day as a human being. Maybe I burned out early, or perhaps I just needed a break to regroup and heal (and change a few diapers). I now that for me their will never be another grunge scene (and rout I could survive something like that anyways) and for Panos their will probably never be another DIV.

  109. DAH
    “..several times here on Burn, Panos has said “i waited 5 years for this book”….waited….that part is odd to me…and that part worries me…at the very same time i do celebrate DIV in the same way that do you…and maybe that is enough….”

    It was 2007 when DIV “started”.. Therefore it’s 8 years in the making , not 5 :)

    Now let me clarify something.. I overuse and maybe abuse the word GONZO over and over , left and right…
    I understand that many great photographers work with a “plan & a schedule “. I envy them . I wish I was like them .
    I only work by gut, simply RECORDING MY LIFE and struggles.. Not even my backyard coz I don’t have a backyard anymore.
    I already “announced ” to myself ( and everyone that read my crap here and on FB that
    The NEXT CHAPTER ( not book necessarily)
    Is my “DEATH IN TEXAS”
    and I’ll close that trilogy with my
    “DEATH IN NYC”..
    Am I gonna ever finish all that? With my pace ?
    8 YEARS per publication? Seems pretty dim the way I “ride my horse”
    but don’t discount me yet…

  110. Paul , exactly..
    Although I totally understand where David coming from. He’s talking about Millie Vanillie ONE HIT WONDER style …
    Nahhhhh, I’m just a late bloomer and a slow ugly sluggish sick insect hoping that someday will fly as a butterfly .
    I love illusions and delusions .
    Why? So far they kept me alive

  111. CHARLES
    (…But I also feel that many today should take more time with their projects. Five years doesn’t seem that long to me…)

    Yes , 5 or 8 years means NOTHING.. Time means nothing..
    ULUSEES did ONLY ONE TRIP in his life,
    And poor HOMER wrote
    ONLY 2 POEMS ( oddyssey and Iliad )..
    Bob Dylan whom I love to death wrote 3000 songs ( when quantity really works ),
    ARAKI has 300 books , but Einstein only ONE and a half..
    It really doesn’t matter..

    Dr.DRE btw just barely made his 3rd album in a 35 year career ….

  112. Btw. A small “preview” of my “DEATH IN TEXAS” is already published here in Burn. According to Diego the slideshow had a standing ovation in Barcelona last year… I’m up to something and I’ll always be till my last breath .
    I loved Apache Indians . I admired their resistance..
    ( although they “lost” in the end )
    John Wayne was NEVER my hero

  113. Check my soundcloud..
    All I’m trying to do is a “tiny opera”
    10 “music bursts” on 10 slideshows)
    I’m sure you all already guessed my favorite movie ,
    which is: “FITZCARALDO” of course

  114. Gonzo journalism is a style of journalism that is written without claims of objectivity, often including the reporter as part of the story via a first-person narrative. The word “gonzo” is believed to be first used in 1970 to describe an article by Hunter S. Thompson, who later popularized the style. It is an energetic first-person participatory writing style in which the author is a protagonist, and it draws its power from a combination of both social critique and self-satire. It has since been applied to other subjective artistic endeavors.

    Gonzo journalism involves an approach to accuracy through the reporting of personal experiences and emotions, as compared to traditional journalism, which favors a detached style and relies on facts or quotations that can be verified by third parties. Gonzo journalism disregards the strictly edited product favored by newspaper media and strives for a more personal approach; the personality of a piece is as important as the event the piece is on. Use of sarcasm, humor, exaggeration, and profanity is common.

    Among the forefathers of the new journalism movement, Thompson said in the February 15, 1973 issue of Rolling Stone, “If I’d written the truth I knew for the past ten years, about 600 people—including me—would be rotting in prison cells from Rio to Seattle today. Absolute truth is a very rare and dangerous commodity in the context of professional journalism.”

  115. I was pretty sure that ‘gonzo’ was NOT the cutting and pasting of other peoples articles and Wikipedia aerticles, nor the spamming of bad youtube videos.
    The only piece of HsT I enjoyed was Hells Angels Which being written in 1966, long before johhny depp played him in a shit film. I suspect its not on many peoples radars. i wonder why?


    Fear and Loathing is pretty hard to beat for HST….maybe the BEST thing i ever read of his was the job application he filled out for a job for a Vancouver newspaper…i will see if i can find it…didn’t see the Depp film…i knew they were friends…but yea Depp (who i like) is totally the wrong guy for HST….cant imagine him playing that part…

  117. CHARLES

    yes , i get that totally…..but you must remember, or somebody must remember (including Panos) that if i had not PUSHED him in the first place we wouldn’t have this…ask him…people are SO AFRAID of the push…geeeeezus…of course it doesnt work for everyone nor should it…but we need to look at how this got made in the first place..many are forgetting…but its all here somewhere in the comment section of Burn….and in my time on location in Venice with Panos working with him one on one…

    very nice to see you here again Charles….always a pleasure…

    cheers, david

  118. PAUL

    yes, only one The Americans……and only one Sabine…and only one Cafe Lehmitz…and so be it if that is the case here…i am simply doing with Panos what i did the first time…challenge …push….and his stated goals to me indicate he wants the big push….

    every time i work with a photographer i am assuming they are going for the top level…that is rising above the “mean level”….there are thousands at the mean level…..i am just not from the school of gratuitous compliments….those are for Instagram followers and for Flikr groups, camera club stuff….at Magnum for example we rarely compliment…even at university level ( at Univ of Missouri) we were hard on each other..compliments to be “nice” or “diplomatic” can cause serious false expectations and do more harm than good……better to go get someone on the track of where their talents actually exist… or not…it just depends on where the photographer wants to go…or where they say they want to go…there are many ways to enjoy photography and for sure nobody needs to push if they do not want….

    again, my tennis game sucks…i have no talent to play tennis….but i like to play tennis anyway….not to be great…just to that is just fine as well with photography…so it just depends on the room you want to be in…my music teacher in high school told me “david, i can see you want to play the trumpet, but you have no “ear” for music”….he was right..did he dash my dreams? was he being negative? no…he gave his honest opinion based on teaching many students… and saved me money on future music lessons!! if i was destined to become a great trumpet player of course if would have done so anyway…yet listening or viewing or appreciating is way different than actually “playing” or shooting…

    the best picture editors i know at the top magazines absolutely cannot take a picture!!! no “shooting eye” …so seeing and recognising and doing are two totally different things….

    now YOU… Paul oftentimes show a magical eye…you study all of this…you must have a set of quotes set up somewhere and you can reference anyone at you are “well educated”….you STUDY the scene so to speak…i think i could take your work and whittle it down to a rather amazing body of work….perhaps a bit disconnected but that is ok..many of the images really sing (not gratuitous)…you simply need to hit on a narrative a topic a flow …your pictures need a PLACE….something that wraps them together….i know you often refer to Peterson…he is pretty random…EXCEPT for Cafe Lehmitz which is a very tight photojournalistic essay….and that is his benchmark…it just isn’t what he did after…so you MIGHT want to go really tight….i mean tight….i think you have the eye and the talent to lock onto to something…

    in any case, always a pleasure to have you here….you have a good feel for the right things….now you just need to do them yourself….

    cheers, david

  119. “I was pretty sure that ‘gonzo’ was NOT the cutting and pasting of other peoples articles and Wikipedia articles, nor the spamming of bad youtube videos.”

    Well John, as you know, history repeats itself, the second time as farce.

    Not sure what you’re referencing, but thinking back to David’s comments on how the book came to be, it sounds more like Burroughs cut up method than HST.

    The go-to shit film about HST, btw, is “Where the Buffalo Roam,” with Bill Murray. Truly horrible, but there are a couple scenes, reportedly written by Thompson in an effort to salvage something from the film, that are almost transcendental. Worth the slog for fans of Thompson, or Murray for that matter.

    I’m not sure what I think about the Gilliam film. I found it very unpleasant to watch, but it seemed like Gilliam was going for, and captured, something deep and ugly that was not so apparent in the book, which is more of a very fun read. Thompson, reportedly, liked it.

    On a completely different topic, I’m a bit surprised no one’s mentioned the Gilden two day shoot in Appalachia. Looked to me like he did some great work and it’s the critics who are really showing their contempt for the people depicted in the work.

  120. Gladdy got me thinking about Hunter S. Thompson, now it’s hard to stop. I’d say another, perhaps even the most important, feature of Gonzo journalism as practiced by HST, was invoking lurid, highly paranoid verbal imagery to illuminate truly sick and sordid aspects of society. It flouts journalistic convention, but that was never what it was about.

    For the most part, HST was not a fan of the things he wrote about. On the contrary, he had a deep and abiding hatred for the things that made them tick, whether it was the Hells Angels, Vegas or Richard Nixon. Panos, on the other hand, judging from all I’ve read from him, is a fan of Venice Beach and mostly likes the lifestyle he depicts. Nothing wrong with that. I like Coney Island and most of the things that interest me photographically, but coming at a subject as a fan, or perhaps I should say aficionado, is definitely not Gonzo. Just let it be its own thing.

  121. Ha, one more thing… most people, I think, are unaware that Thompson spent part of his last years writing a sports column at ESPN. It’s not HST at the top of his game, but still beats just about all other sports columnists, or political writers, at the top of theirs,

    E.G., HST at the turn of the century in an article about how the NFL’s days are numbered (

    “Let’s get back to Generation Z & its Lush & Extravagant birthright in this year of Our Lord 2000. It might be a Mixed blessing to be hatched at the top of the Heap. Indeed. The Stock Market might crash, crazed Muslim terrorists might put Nerve Gas or Anthrax in your drinking water, Your daughter might get Rabies or turn into a famous Porno slut with two Junkie boyfriends who will Hack into your secret Computer Code & loot your Bank Accounts. But these are Uptown Problems, for sure, compared to being born in a Great Depression or forced to join a Hitler Youth Brigade at the end of WW2.”

  122. David…
    Yes, you’re absolutely right. My work is everywhere and nowhere without a sense of place. Totally disconnected. Knowing this problem has been driving me crazy for a very, very long time. It’s terrible, but i honesty don’t have the slightest idea where to go tight. I’m not even sure I know which is my best work. Thanks to Instagram I’m absolutely confused. My favorite images get bad ratings and those i thought were awful suddenly are extremely popular. So in a sense, I’m utterly lost just obsessively making photos craving to see the “light”. I need that damn narrative or topic to lock on. But for the life of me i just can’t recognize it.
    So what I’ve been doing lately is just letting go and I’ve stop fighting it and making pictures of whatever my eye dictates and just waiting. I’m basically just copying your advice to Panos in 2011 when you told him on Burn to keep on in his photographic diary mode and wait for a while and stop showing his weekly or monthly progress. Now of course this was advice for Panos and I don’t honestly know if this is of any use to ME.
    What i do know for sure is, once i do visualize it or you make me see it, I’ll lock onto it like a heat seeking missile and i won’t let go until I’ve squeezed it dry. Because I’m damn hungry to make something special. I’m dying to create a body of work at the best of my possibilities. I’m sick of being lost. I want to go top level. I think this is something I’ve always made quite a loud statement about here on Burn. But David, I need your guidance to get there, your mentoring to make this strong body of work. If you give me a chance I’ll prove I can do it.

  123. I’ve (belatedly!) come to the conclusion that if everyone loves your work then you’ve ballsed it all up. You’ve gone for the low hanging fruit that “everyone” will like….. Who wants to end up being the Thomas Kinkade of photography?

  124. MW,
    Here’s how was my “situation ” around Venice circa 2007 , when David PUSHED ME UPWARDS , helping me ME REALIZE that there IS “something I was already cooking” …

    through DAH’s words
    ( in Death in Venice – forward ) :

    “…Panos did not go to Venice Brach to make pictures.
    He was already there. There was no ESCAPE.
    Locked Down. STUCK….”

    Does anyone here was around Burn back in 08 that gave,
    10 ASSIGNMENTS to 10 photographers here?
    Yup, that’s how it all started ..
    I was shooting
    Around VENICE prior to Burn, whe it was still “ROADTRIPS”..
    I do remember I submitted that year that SEAN GALLAGHER got the 1st official stipend.
    And I do remember my harsh criticism to David …
    And I DO ( ha ha yeah I do ) remember his answer that pissed me of and immediately I realized that he’s giving me a chance to GROW…

    Ha .. Smiling .. He said something really cool like:
    “I saw your photos u submitted.. Not good enough.. I wish u could shoot the way you talk…”

    And that was IT: the PUSH .. The BING BANG …
    Since then I haven’t stopped busting David’s phone for TWEAKS , edits , ideas, u name it…
    Another example I remember a few years ago ,
    When I bothered him with yet another edit… and smiling, he got MAD..
    and wrote back:” when are u gonna get up from that BISTRO CHAIR??”
    U assume people know Venice but there’s not one photo my high above to show the geography of the place …
    And many many other examples.. Where do I start? Beautiful memories now,
    But some of those made me THINK ..
    Think what ? U gonna ask?

    Well till I met DAH, my Venice “work” was NO GONZO, nor was I consciously shooting for books, publications or etc..
    The CAMERA was my DOCTOR , still is..
    U see.. Sitting in a bar stool doing drugs all night means shit to me…
    Drugs and alcohol mean shit to me ..
    But I will elaborate on that last ( alcohol drug “thing” ), but it usually a topic that it’s either overrated or underrated ..
    But … How about let’s keep this for later , since nobody asked anything about their purpose on Art – or Not..

    But yea!
    First it was the BING BANG,
    Then the PUSH..
    Then the LIGHTS …

  126. The mean level? That sounds so…mean. I prefer to think of myself and the rest of the people at this level as having delusions of photographic adequacy. It sounds better, somehow.

  127. I remember that, Panos. You got Venice and Audrey couldn’t decide between some kid and her parents, if I remember this right, and Mr Harvey told her to do the folks because there’s always another kid, which is very true, I think. Kids are like roaches that way. There’s always another one in the wings waiting for their chance to get stomped on.

  128. Akaky,
    i wish i had kids…. that
    ‘photo opp” slash
    ‘life enrichment
    would be my personal lifetime project…
    i LOVED SAM HARRIS new book ,and the theme….its something i cannot touch…
    for those who really know me they
    remember my attempt
    ‘DARK KIDS’ …
    I WAS lucky enough to be around beautiful kids and the given pain…
    Anyone remember my “DARK KIDS” STORY FROM THE MIGHTY BIG BEAR mountain in California?
    i bet u Akaky , does

  129. The only piece of HsT I enjoyed was Hells Angels Which being written in 1966, long before johhny depp played him in a shit film. I suspect its not on many peoples radars. i wonder why?

    JOHN G.
    i think everyone knows about the HELLS A story… and the finale…the beating etc etc… I never met Hunter but he indeed loved fast bikes and they had that outlaw macho image… he felt he fits for a sec or two. he wasnt a spy per se…
    now about the Johnny Depp movie i think its BRILLIANT… Benicio Del Toro also was unbelievable…and the director TERRY GILLIAM nailed it…
    i used to compare books and movie scripts and im always disappointed by all results…
    but this one SPEAKS TO ME….
    PLUS DEPP was one of his closest friends (late in his life)…
    and MENTOR (Not jusr friends or hollywood crappy fake stuff)
    A real friend WILL PICK UP the phone at 4:30am….thats how u know

  130. DEATH IN VENICE.what can I say…controversy? SHOCKING! Isn’t that what everyone wanted? For the many that have never made it to Venice Beach, this zine is a wonderful trip into the craziness,yet there is so much heart and truth there…it is genuine beyond imagination. For those that have a copy enjoy and play…just like Venice!

  131. ELAINE…!
    Fantastic… looks like i paid u for your review (wish i could afford that kind of PR…smiling…
    but anyway…your name sound familiar …are u from Venice ..have we met? either way who cares…. i enjoy and encourage ONLY reviews like YOURS from now on… i just want everyone to adore and make this tabloid a best seller… im here to get rich!!!! i wanna be bigger than Bruce Lee, bigger than King Kong ,in other words i wanna be bigger than ACADEMICIAN out there …
    anyway , holla back at
    i think i got a job for you …
    on a serious note: thank you

  132. PAUL

    ok….now do just one thing for openers….get a new Instagram account…keep the old one for family stuff or whatever..or maybe you can just change the name on the account you have…anyway drop the Adesirecalledcamera moniker …i mean who is that? use your NAME… cannot build up any audience with Adesirecalledcamera…using your name will also make you think differently about yourself and your work…people DO pay attention to Instagram…FORGET any compliments or criticism you get on Instagram….the number of likes actually does end up being a fairly good indicator in some ways, but mentally you must not pay too much attention….popularity does count for something, just not everything….you cannot TRY to be popular anyway…so forget it….

    now with a REAL NAME on your work find something small to work on…either literally or conceptually…make every picture on this new account be part of the new essay you will do…announce on Instagram what it is that you are doing….the pressure will be good pressure…and then take one month to do a body of work that is just that …a body of work….

    some people use their Instagram accounts to literally make a portfolio….i mix it up with family stuff well just because i only got an Instagram FOR family stuff and then later started putting up some things i was working on seriously….but i have other things coming out besides whatever is on Instagram…you do not…so use this new account or newly renamed account and just do nothing but the new essay so to speak…that could include your family…maybe yes maybe no…doesn’t matter as long as you are staying tight to the story….when i said “place” i meant a place for your photos….you need a shoe box under the bed to put all your best pictures in!!! Instagram is that shoebox….

    this is all psychological stuff but photography IS all psychological….

    FACE THE FEAR!!! this is really really really important…

    this part will be hard for you, but i think you need to do it…you think too much…you know too much about photography what everyone has done and said…for many i say just the opposite…most are not very well educated…and you are too well educated….so take all that knowledge, get it off your desktop so to speak, and just step out into the wind and rain RAW…….

    take the month of August OFF from Burn for one thing…go away… can catch up later and you will be welcomed back into the warm arms of Burn…but right now you need to disappear……

    you may or may not realize it but i disappear for weeks at a time from Burn….or barely here…if i am not here , it means i am shooting…i am not shooting now i am riding my bike now and hence here in comments…but when i am working i am not HERE…..

    finding a story i cannot help you with much…i could if we were in same location or if i could chat with you one on one a bit…stay random stay loose but wrap it all around SOMETHING….create a space in your head and believe in it…..

    the pressure of your name on the shoebox of pictures will FORCE you to do something…right now you present yourself as anonymous….step out, step up..

    this bit of everyone liking pictures of all their friends is the downside of Instagram if you take those friend likes seriously……and i am only recommending Instagram because it is clearly the easiest way to see anyone’s sketchbook….and it is an automatic diary as no other medium……

    ok..get out of here…go shoot…we will be watching…..

    oh yes, you do need to let us know your new account name…i will track it…i will keep up with what you are doing and leave comments there….

    now make some magic….

    cheers, david

  133. I started learning how to embrace insomnia…
    Now I’m working on how to turn insomnia into a useful tool… How to turn it into “creative” time…
    Guess what’s my new exercise is?
    Yes yes, editing ..
    It took me over 40 years to realize I never really paid attention to pretty much anything
    except, well except COUPLE THINGS…
    Now it’s time to really pay attention to the things I use to call “mundane or boring”…
    All the times I “avoided” and I thought I “confronted” my perception of reality…
    I need to make up for the lost and self loathing lost time.
    I wanna play. And re learn everything.. So I wanna learn how to EDIT?
    I wanna see work through new “eyes”…
    Competitions are over. Reality strikes.
    We all need to constructively help each other.. Anyway we can..
    Not with money .. Just by giving and receiving.
    How? I don’t know. I tell me. My first thought is that if anyone wants to help/play with me ,
    is let me help and learn EDIT through your work…
    I can only look at my stuff for that long… Then I need
    to communicate with someone that cares. Through photos ! No meaningless conversations and fake Greek philosophies over whiskey or vodka .
    What I DO NOT SEE IN BURN lately, is true participation..
    Meaning: SHOW SOME WORK and let’s all play..
    It’s not even realistic. Simple math…
    But with all my respect to my Mentor, I think we could all “allow” him sometime to shoot and produce..
    Thus said , and that’s for the rest of us , let’s all play, let’s all edit, let’s all wake up and show some work..
    Ok , I’ll start first , but I’m tired about me me me MEEE…
    Enough.. I’m rich now. How about LETS PLAY?
    Like kids. Like the good all days ..?!!??
    Plus remember, nobody can steal your or my copyrighted photos…
    No need for paranoia.
    I don’t know how more honest can I be!
    I’m BORED ..
    Very BORED….
    ( yea yea I know: and then I woke up )
    Good morning y’all here at home and good afternoon mama Europe
    and WORLD..
    Can we all plz share? Or, put it roughly , can we all put our photos where our mouth is???
    Por Favor?
    The worst thing u can do to me , is bore me to death… And that’s a warning;)
    Big hug

  134. Paul,
    I admire your ability to pay attention…
    ( Akaky’s also )..
    And thank god you’re a little wrong.
    Mother wasn’t crazy ! It was my PERCEPTION,
    that’s what I believed back then, that’s how I portrayed her,
    and I was FLAT OUT WRONG…
    But once again, I’ll admit it..
    The DARK KIDS work , wasn’t for her nor the Kids.
    I was unaware of that…
    It was all about ME , ME , ME…
    and my perception.
    You see, let me elaborate since I’m in the mood ..
    For me, reality is totally irrelevant, meaning I can’t control it therefore
    I choose to ignore it all together…
    BUT, there’s a but .. as always…
    There’s ONE thing I can’t escape from: my PERCEPTION/ judgments..
    In other words , I’m totally honest in anything I’m trying to portray , as long as I stay true to
    my BELIEFS of the particular occasion or situation…
    But be4 u throw me under the bus as a delusional chaotic lover …smiling…
    I’ll tell u a secret :

  135. Ross Nolly
    August 2, 2015 at 5:17 pm Edit
    I’ve (belatedly!) come to the conclusion that if everyone loves your work then you’ve ballsed it all up. You’ve gone for the low hanging fruit that “everyone” will like….. Who wants to end up being the Thomas Kinkade of photography?

    absolutely TRUE…the only thing worse is not being anyone in photography…….

  136. Antoine D’Agata:
    To get photography back to its true purpose. Photography has been reduced to a state of shallowness and emptiness, of pettiness I would say, resulting from practices focused on discovering new formal aspects and inventing personal and original ways to look at reality – culminating in works that are trivial, useless, futile – new versions of reality, sort of.My object then is to get photography back to requiring true commitment, to being a language that is unique by its potential subtlety and rawness … a language resulting from personal experience, the product of situations the author finds himself in; so that photography is not a way to look at the world, but a way to live the world, to take position, to be of the world, in such a way that everything stands for something – distance, movement … so that photography is an entirely physically related art, purely existential, anchored in reality…which is what I strive to explain and push for. It is that characteristic, unique to photography – to the exclusion of all other forms of art, which connects it to life itself, makes it a tangible presence. The photographer is then accountable not for his images, but for his acts.

  137. but coming at a subject as a fan, or perhaps I should say aficionado, is definitely not Gonzo. Just let it be its own thing.

    i wholeheartedly agree… let it be its own thing…
    i like that…why define it ?

  138. AKAKY,

    Kids are a photographic minefield of cliches that needs to be wended through most carefully. I know because I’ve been doing it, and am almost to the other side without getting too dismembered. Again a few years back, a few choice words from Harvey and it all started to become clear. Then it took long slow deliberate shooting – and will still for years to come though the work can now be shown and stand on its own (real soon). And most of its not what I post on my FB feed. One needs to hold stuff back, figure out what it means. Don’t let the public at large do it for you, instead rely on your own heart and gut and few comprades (looking at you PAUL). Then there will be that aha moment, but never if its always pats on the back. One also needs to kill their favorite babies if they’re not playing along with the bigger picture. Hard to do…


    Always a pleasure. I do stop in often to look at photos, just not commenting so much. Always love the insights though and you remain a great teacher, even just in this thread alone.



  139. fan though…& afficionado? hmmmm…if thats totally true, then that happened wayyyyyyy later….
    once again though ill refer u to DAH forward ( i did not go there by choice originally )…
    in fact it seemed relatively pretty easy for me in the first few years i lived there 305 VENEZIA AVE VENICA CA 90291…
    I was so naive thinking that its just another tourist trap…big deal… little that i knew was the treasure was right under my nose , while dreaming to fly to Peru or Afghanistan to find the EL DORADO…
    gosh, how much time i wasted looking north , east or south forgetting all the BOOKS I READ AS A TEENGRECOCHILD… remember, no internet back then, so people would READ…
    Anyway that was then, this now, no wonder i was naive and self educated/medicated etc…
    ALL THOSE BOOKS about route66 and KEROUAC and this and that and that and this….
    i was living at the canals at 2001 and all i cared about was to locate jim morrison’s fake apt that they used in the movie…
    i mean really California thinking…and yes i was platinum blonde back then
    (just like everyone else :)

    so i wasted 4 years ,literally avoiding that beach…
    heres a piece a tiny piece of what i later heard about that brought me back to my books i read in little Arta greece :

    Text by ROBIN G BROWN
    “I love the smell of urine in the morning, it reminds me of North Venice beach. The first place in America where a woman could wear a bathing suit in public, a man could go without a hat, where a person could pee in public without being arrested. The place where Kerouac, Burrows and John Wilber spoke while Charlie Parker played saxophone, where Morrison and Krieger pondered the doorway to the other side, where Charlie Chaplin built a ginger bread court for his mother, and W.C. Fields one for himself. Where you could get alcohol during prohibition, heroin during the fifties and sixties, crack in the eighties, and Meth in the new millennium. Where art meets crime. Where Arnold made pumping iron into Gold. Where you can see a man balance a stove on his chin while juggling chain saws. Break-dancing, roller-skating, and of course skate boarding. The slum by the sea, Dog Town.”

  140. CHARLES,
    dang we posted simultaneously… good morning… im having serious insomnia as u can tell…
    i wanna say that really scared me

    : One also needs to kill their favorite babies if they’re not playing along with the bigger picture. Hard to do…

    that i cant do…id rather let someone else do it…. it hurts… cant edit unless i get a thicker skin

  141. My education for the day: I had no damn clue who Thomas Kinkade was until Mr Harvey brought him up. Not wishing to appear ignorant, I Googled the name and now I know that Art is Art, isn’t it? Still, on the other hand, water is water. And east is east and west is west and if you take cranberries and stew them like applesauce they taste much more like prunes than rhubarb does. Now you tell me what you know, said the great American social philosopher, Julius Henry Marx. In this spirit, I shall sally forth to become the Thomas Kinkade of American photography. I can use the money. Apparently schlock is incredibly remunerative and if there’s anyone who can produce schlock in industrial quantities, it’s me.

  142. CHARLES

    “…which is a challenge as I’m currently on the early early design stages of making another myself from archival material (Nirvana) and certainly don’t want to be precious about it yet it will need to be a viable commercial product. ..”

    can i plz pretty plz take a peek? someday ?
    im a little obsessed with that Nirvana band as u very well know…
    now u got me all excited…cant wait

  143. Well, one makes little guesses based on limited information. No offense intended. And sometimes, usually probably, we unconsciously inject our own lives into these things. I used to love Venice. You might recall it was where I did my first sorta real photo project. That was back between 1979-81. I guess there were some tourists, but it was way more artsy, weird, druggy. So I guess I was something of an aficionado.

    Same thing happened to me in Coney in NY. The fact that so many people had photographed it, and so many more continued to, was a major turn off, but I lived there, and I lived there year round, and I got to know people and places that the tourists were totally unaware of or had no chance to gain access to, so eventually, without really trying, I accumulated a fair body of work that is unlike anyone else’s. But back to the Gonzo theme, nothing I did there was ever Gonzo; there was no fear and loathing. I came to genuinely love it. Gonzo is more like a hate fuck.

    Nowadays I like to think that I’m not much of a fan and certainly not a fanboy, but the HST thread reminded me that I was not always this way. Back in high school and early college, I wanted to write like Hunter S. Thompson, and I tried with predictably laughable results. When I got around to reading Burroughs, it was much worse. Much later, I came to realize that their styles were organic to who they were, and that trying to imitate them was worse than ridiculous. One could somewhat imitate their lifestyles and maybe draw similar insights and attitudes about life, but as an artist, an honest artist, it would have to come out differently on the page, or it would for sure be shit. It might not be so cut and dried for photography, but I’d still err on the side of not trying to be like anybody else.

    Fortunately, as a photographer I never had any strong influences. In my first go round I was raised on Cartier-Bresson, Eugene Smith, Walker Evans and the other WPA photographers. I just tried to mimic them, but just because that’s what I was told to do. It got me by with off-and-on freelance work over the years, but when I decided to make a serious effort to be a good photographer, I left all that behind without a glance back. On my own, I did some seriously crappy work for several years before starting to figure out who I actually am. Since then, it’s been useful to be aware of and appreciate other people’s work, but at least now I can look at Salgado, or Winograd, or Harvey, or whoever, and not go out and try to take pictures like they do. Not even unconsciously.

    Anyway, coming from me, you can take all that for what it’s worth. To paraphrase some of my favorite dialogue from “All That Jazz,” I’m probably not a great photographer, I may not even be a good photographer, but I can damn well be a better photographer than I was the year before. I think that’s probably a pretty good approach for just about anybody.

    As for Panos’s wish that people would show more work here, I agree. I liked it when we used to do that. I always did as Charles suggests and held back my good stuff. I liked making little off-the-cuff essays from the random photos I took just from carrying a camera all the time. No one saw anything from my published essays before they were published. Obviously, I think that’s good advice. But I can see how people might not want to show less than their best here, as so many top editors and photographers follow this site. Fuck it, I say. But reasonable people, of course, can disagree.

  144. You’re wasting your time, dude. If you ever became the Thomas Kinkade of photography you’d have spend the rest of your life explaining why Death in Venice was a monumental mistake on your part, or, at the very best, that you had a huge brain fart and DIV came out. You don’t want to do that, right?

  145. wish that people would show more work here, I agree. I liked it when we used to do that. I always did as Charles suggests and held back my good stuff. I liked making little off-the-cuff essays from the random photos I took just from carrying a camera all the time. No one saw anything from my published essays before they were published. Obviously, I think that’s good advice. But I can see how people might not want to show less than their best here, as so many top editors and photographers follow this site. Fuck it, I say. But reasonable people, of course, can disagree.

    great , i see what u saying…
    double edge sword..
    DO U KEEP THE BEST FOR LATER? or obnoxiously present them here?
    DAH help on this one…
    i dont know whats really right or wrong although we ALL KNOW MY THEORY….
    ALL OUT…theres no tomorrow… eat the posoles while hot…

  146. MW
    also, think of how many young kids watching all that we do here… as John Gladdy said , posting youtubecrap can get boring.. wiki posts boring…. funny thing is that all of us agree that photography is a universal language.. well,then why do we keep communicating only in english ???

  147. but i insist once again on one thing… use the platform to reach others that maybe interested in Akaky,s work and maybe hates my style.. all groovy as long someone gets the job…

  148. in other words , BURN IS still the place to be, to showcase OUR WORK…
    not the only place , nah nah nah…. but its one of those few legit places as for now at least, that it can only benefit you by being PUBLISHED here…
    but wait a second
    wait 3 more seconds
    ok, no more waiting…
    what if i submitted and i feel rejected? what if theres a huge line of super worthy photogs NEEDED to be published before me? am i good ? am i bad? am i pretty ami tall am i this ? am i worthy? should i quit???

    yes, QUIT…but only quit the anxiety and the smoking..smoking kills…
    so what can i do?
    simple: you can STILL SHOW OUR WORK… not in a formal way, but in a way that it can build momentum and starts making people interested to what you want to say… by posting here is like actually HELPING PEOPLE find us, instead of waiting at home to be “discovered”…etc

  149. and thats what i did with DIV for everyone like Akaky that really pays attention…i got so much help and free edits from all here…i miss tom hyde btw…
    DIV was born RIGHT HERE in the COMMENTS SECTION… not in any formal way by any means

  150. Panos, okay, I don’t walk around much anymore, but I usually swim laps, so here’s one from this morning:

    As for my Coney Island work, it’s over, but you probably saw this:

    Although that was ultimately shot over three weeks, it was the culmination of several years working on the story.

    Curious People, here:

    Lots of other stuff spread out all over. Maybe I’ll give in and do a book some day. Ha. Wanna edit it?

  151. some will say:

    i dont have time for all that… ive a family to feed….

    D’Agata would say :

    “And I desperately strive to exist, even today, and fight; because, for me, there is no choice other than going on feeling, going on surviving the economic brutality of the world and feeding my own fears and desires …”

  152. “…use the platform to reach others that maybe interested in Akaky,s work…” Nobody is interested in my work, dude; I have a hard time convincing myself that I’m interested in my work. I think I do it in order to justify the inordinate amount of money I’ve spent on cameras.

  153. book edit? hell yeah in.

    im really terrified of the idea that lots of great work will be buried UNSEEN…
    BURN alone cant do everything.. we need to create more outlets… collectively and solo projects..
    the Photography world is sleeping ….we need more funds to showcase peoples work

  154. sorry AKAKY,
    its not up to you to decide who likes your work and who doesnt…
    i love your work but you play hard to catch…post some stuff here dang it…
    show me your side of the woods..its not all about JUDGEMENTS i hope…remember PHOTOGRAPHY is just another unique language.. i know u can speak it…so use it…or im going to bed

  155. Was just kidding about the editing. I don’t think it’s worth a book. Thanks though. Try editing your own stuff. Pretend it’s someone else’s and go Gonzo on its ass.

  156. Panos,

    Since you are asking….in general…not me personally:

    Something I have been working on. Work in progress…Black and white…that’s not the title just a drawer (sort of speaking) to put those photos which are in black and white…nothing more, nothing less….It’s related to the “Aria” work…part of a larger theme.

    One reason you don’t see me posting “updates” or anything like that here from me is because it seems awkward and sort of like giving unsolicited advise….and like self promotion?!?! Not my thing….
    But you asked ;-))))) so here is some work I have been cooking.

    Wel….now that I think about it….I did make a post recently in my instagram page announcing I have made a new gallery…oopss….but that’s my space sort of speaking ;-))) my own real state ;-))) in cyberspace!

  157. CARLO !!!!!!!!!
    whats up brother!

    One reason you don’t see me posting “updates” or anything like that here from me is because it seems awkward and sort of like giving unsolicited advise….and like self promotion?!?! Not my thing….
    But you asked ;-))))) so here is some work I have been cooking

    NOT only i asked, i begged u mean, thank you!.
    totally disagree, and im speaking from personal experience..i got serious help here from pretty much ALL, and i mean it…lots of experienced photogs here..seasoned a baby in front of them…not only photogs but also editors etc etc…
    and SELF PROMOTION ? what does that mean? who else are u gonna PROMOTE other than your peers , people that proved themselves on the field…
    SELF PROMOTION is NOT a sin…. its closer to self respect…its not BEGGING FOR ATTENTION…its SHARING THE LOVE with all..u sing your song ill sing mine and still, no competitions, nothing to prove…
    Self promotion is another way to say : i EXIST and i wanna SING MY SONG

  158. Ross, there’s an Android emulator called Blue Stacks that you might want to try; it’s how I got onto Instagram. You will have to shell out money for the program eventually, but you get a few pix onto Instagram before that happens. Panos, as for my stuff, here’s what I did on my birthday a week ago. Knock yourself out.

    Speaking of my birthday and how I spent it, when are you moving to NYC?

  159. “SELF PROMOTION is NOT a sin…. its closer to self respect…its not BEGGING FOR ATTENTION…its SHARING THE LOVE with all..u sing your song ill sing mine and still, no competitions, nothing to prove…” In America, the man who tooteth not his own horn, the same shall not be tooted! That’s a deeply profound statement, provided, of course, that you don’t think about it too much.

  160. One also needs to kill their favorite babies if they’re not playing along with the bigger picture……………. Let them stay eventually they become invisible

  161. Yes yes Paul and yes !!!
    U got the CHALLENGE from the maestro ! Now have fun and feed us good food!
    This is how my DEATH IN VENICE odyssey started 8 years ago.
    THE BIRTH of my DEATH in venice was born..
    It all started as an exercise. Let’s speak photography, not just English.
    Photography is a universal language , everyone speaks it ( even broken ), but not everyone speaks English;)

    Now until DAH gets into the room, here’s my logic : POST . Start with a GEM and GUIDE US.
    Take the car keys and DRIVE.. Let your subconscious post , don’t overthink, actually I’d say , don’t even think at all if possible.
    Just shoot and post . Pretend you’re blind. Shoot without a camera .
    You’re here to communicate your awesome “unknown for now” story .. You’re not here to please .
    Sing a song for us !
    We are waiting anxiously!
    Good morning

  162. I’m anxiously waiting DAH’s thoughts , but consider your self very very lucky to have
    been chosen to turn the August spotlight on..
    Enjoy your August.. we will follow every step .
    Elevate us .. give birth to a masterpiece! The universe is asking you for it..
    All u simply have to do is play have fun and DELIVER !
    Talking about pressure huh???

  163. PAUL

    i think you should use the new account to start sketching…give us some short text…i think when you went “random” shooting based on your knowledge of both Sobel and Anders Peterson, you might have skipped a step ….both of them STARTED with basic essays…Sabine and Lehmitz…..after that they both went a bit more random….and of course their apparent random is not really random….

    so yes you need a BASIC theme….a PLACE….not necessarily a physical place…but a place in your mind…some type of structure…we all hate the word structure, but if you look at all the classics in literature, film, painting, photography etc. there is nothing very complex about the basic structure or story…Shakespeare is VERY BASIC ..right? so HOW you tell perhaps a very simple story is the main thing…Sally Mann, her kids at home….Bruce Davidson, the NY subway….. Sobel, his passing love…..Peterson, his bar hangout…….Smith, a doctor at work……..d’Ágata, his addictions….Twain, two guys on a raft….Hemingway, two people in love in a war…nothing very complex compound about any of it…all stories told THOUSANDS OF TIMES….only unique for us because of the WAY of telling the story….songs are the most basic stories of all……lost love, looking for love, betrayal, death, forgiveness…..perfect love doesn’t seem to ever be much of a story!!! (probably because nobody believes it OR they want identification)…anyway storytelling has been with us since the earliest language and first campfires…people love hearing stories from others and people love “people watching”…some people prefer landscapes and architecture devoid of people entirely…..that’s cool too if that is you….

    when i look at your pictures now on Instagram, i see a nice eye…..yet i have NO IDEA what you are THINKING about any of it…i see how you see it, but i have no idea YOUR OPINION of anything….zero idea who you are by looking at the pictures….your photographs should be like your fingerprints….all Paul….i want to know what you think , how you feel, what gives you pleasure, what gives you pain, basically who you are…..yes, photography is always about your OPINION…your VIEW of things…could be optimistic , could be pessimistic, no matter…just needs to be visceral and then finally visual….

    when you really really really feel something or think something with pictures, we will too……

    as Panos says, and i believe it as well, don’t think too much…thinking too much kills the visceral reaction to things….if you “plan” a photo essay the way you plan other things, you are dead from the beginning…..start somewhere…anywhere…and then let serendipity take you into the rabbit hole….

    cheers, david

  164. MW

    we used to have a work in progress section…i actually believed in it….yet fact is very few actually used it…there was not much work in progress to ever show from this commentator audience…..

    and the 10 assignments that were given here? ha ha ..only maybe 3 came through at all..Panos being one of them….Bob Black and Erica McDonald also came through with fine essays…yes, maybe Audrey with her parents too..not sure….yet 70% could not get off the ground….fast starts and then starts…disappointing…..

    i am beginning to think that photography is like the harmonica…seems so accessible and easy to play….you can pick up a harmonica and play a chord immediately…fits in your pocket…fuck the violin we KNOW that is hard…but the harmonica? easy….

    cheers, david

  165. Yea, I get why people wouldn’t show work in progress. As you know, I am capable of sitting on stuff I hope to get published for long stretches. I don’t mind showing my everyday goofing off, or diary as you call it, stuff; but I think for most people have moved to Instagram and/or Facebook, so it’s not like no one is doing anything.

    Boggles my mind that anyone wouldn’t come through on an assignment for you, though. Actually, with my similar J-school background, it boggles my mind that anyone wouldn’t come through on an assignment, period. That’s a sacred friggin duty.

    I’ve often thought assignment-based work would benefit a lot of the photographers around here. You learn to do your best in a short time, deal with the pressure, take your lessons and then move on. It’s not an easy way to go, though. You’ve gotta get an assignment before you can ace one, and that’s typically a very difficult task to accomplish in itself, especially starting out. Then you’re up against time constraints, can’t necessarily wait for the best light, people miss meetings, or simply disappear, and all kinds of other things inevitably go wrong. But always, you come up with something. Always.

    To get an assignment from you and not complete it? Disappointing isn’t the half of it.

    Regarding the harmonica, it’s unfortunate, but most people think you just need a more expensive harmonica.

  166. Panos…
    yes feeling very lucky and honoured. Yes pressure is full out, but I have to admit I also love it in a strange kind of way. Suffering the same sensation as I used to experience before running the 100m at college. Teeth on edge, all my nervous system is receiving an overdose of adrenaline. Perfect.
    I’m out on the street nice and light… one camera one lens. Screw camera gear, just going to jam and feel it all… See ya all on Burn in 1 month’s time. Let the struggle begin.

  167. David…
    Smiling ok I get the idea. Don’t know right now how the hell I’ll get that state of zen mind…BUT I WILL ACHIEVE IT.
    Bye and thank you.


    >>> I too am tired of the precious nature of most/many photography books…<<<

    Good point. I have the same feeling. In the seventies Moriyama Daido published a few photo books printed in "pocket book" format on rough newsprint-type paper. Refreshing. That includes his book New York 71 book, that he photographed while lonely in New York and strung out on drugs (from which he recovered).


    i think that is why i am only interested in zines these days….i am now on my third one…..either soft cover pocket books or zines..something “user friendly” so to speak…the big hard cover books are simply too much…i don’t know about being “precious” because i am not sure what you mean exactly…..yet, they are too heavy too hard to actually view and if they have lots of text, just impossible to read….there are of course exceptions….Helmut Newton’s 500 pound book is something to see if not to own…it would be a little ridiculous in my house….

  170. aLL;

    try to make this simple, short :)

    a) about the assignment (photographs) so so long ago. yes, the first assignment David gave (burn, or rather the blog) some of us took that as a challenge. I did a short essay on photographing something simple: a woman, who was an immigrant, who was about to return to her country. Gave myself a specific limit: 3 rolls of film and the idea to try to capture what both she was experiencing and what i was experiencing in the face of identity and home and loss. I sent it to david and then David show the work at the Look3. I think I send 25 pics of the 40 pics i made for that ‘essay’…later, turned it into an exhibition here in toronto of 40 pics and then showed it again, longer, in Hong Kong…

    this lead to David’s first ‘grant’. Again, i used the grant to do a simple submission about my son. the idea was simple: how he walked through a museum and tried to reconcile memory (his biological father). While i was away, he was assaulted and robbed while I was in NC. this later became part of my first Burn grant, (the one Sean won) and later took that and turned it into what I thought would be a book (bones of time). took that and again, expanded it into an exhibition i did in toronto, took that large, 100 pictures….

    the thing is a simple one. one, i think, should start simply. focus on what make sense to you and fever it, regardless of what others want. I shoot often in long intense boughts, and then i put the camera away. I never think ‘this will be a book’ or ‘this will be an exhibition’ until i’ve had a chance to work on it….and see what happens….a body of work comes from both the work and the relationship to that work…

    then, much later, i finished a long body of work (more than 200 pictures) that was definited by dealing with family and blindness, and that became ‘Loomings’…i finished it as both an exhibition (and a book)_….spent 2 years editing and shooting, including pictures that were 8 years old in the picture….showed part at Visura…showed part in 2 exhibitions and showed a 80 picture edit at BURN….2 publishers were interested in it as a book after David graciously published it at Burn…i was in the process of doing the book edit and happy happy (including pics i didnt show in my Burn edit) and then my wife and i broke up…so I stopped the book….and let it go…

    and then i spent a year and a half shooting nothing…just writing and walking an thinking (why i turned my back on the book that was to be Loomings) and thought of a new project (Wan Li)…and since over the last 2 1/2 years, have had 2 exhibitions and still editing and fighting with it as a book…both exhibitions very different….both shows some stupid praise and still not sure yet what the book will be like, …but the point is that one must always be attuned to what they want, to be at the heart of what they want, regardless of either the silence or the praise or the fact that people forget you (i had one famous photographer, friend of mine here in toronto, say ‘bob, why arent you serious any more about photography, since your divorce)…so funny to me…anyway…the best thing i could ever give as advice, is simple: dedicate yourself to both your vision and aslo to the work and the way your work, no matter what that is….if you want to look at David, just look at the huge difference between ‘tell it like it is’ and ‘rio’ and ‘divided soul’…those books are soo so so different andyet reflect a common heart….

    as for the U2/Daneil Johnston debate…well i like both…i like U2 (to a degree) and I love daniel J….it is just 2 ways or getting at the same thing…the same way i like writers like hemingway and i love david foster wallace….or rather, i like don dellio and i like donald barthelemew….

    who knows…

    dioes it matter…

    i like to surf and i like to walk and i like to celebrate others and i like to be alone…

    the key: to carve the world out as you see fit….the fact is that most are not brave enough to not give a fuck and also to not care enough…

    and then there is Araky url….


  171. AKAKY,
    Happy belated birthday.
    The move to SUPER dream of mine , NYC,
    start September, hopefully mid September at the latest ..
    Many details logistics, PLUS I want to do it DRIVING and take advantage
    of the “detours” so I can see some “new random East coast America”

  172. AKAKY
    I see EVERYTHING as a possibility for photos,
    I see EVERY TRIP as a possible ROADTRIP..
    I always strive to TURN my life into pictures..
    Reason is : my memory is bad by birth , so I figured the best way for me to
    access info from the past , literally to RECLAIM MY MEMORY LOSSES .. and get
    my memory back , by MAKING PICTURES…
    The funniest thing I discovered in the process is that not all of my memories matched what my photos portrayed

  173. Actually, it’s not mine request!
    It’s Lola’s request. I wanna see America through the eyes of a dog..
    ( but no throughout the eyes of a fish )
    That’s why I try to avoid FISHEYE lenses all I can ;)

  174. BOB BLACK and ALL

    wise words indeed…and we never talked about this , but i too am a big Don Delillo fan…talk about visual “imagery”…will give Barthelemew a read…i have not prior….best thing to read?

    ok, here is the deal…we can CONSUME vast amounts of knowledge..INPUT…it’s unbelievable how much storage is available in the hard drive between our shoulders….we all can appreciate many many things from athletic performance to the arts to engineering and science advances…we see everyday the results of human endeavour…we are incredible learners… we KNOW lots!

    we simply cannot produce much…

    no one person can CREATE very many things…just can’t….so knowledge and creativity are two totally different things that somehow often get confused in our minds….for all of us…so whittling down the knowledge and applying it to “production” or “creativity” or OUTPUT is the KEY….

    one i think should be aware of limitations and at the very same time have a boundless energy to create IF after a clear “reality check” you see a result that resonates based on all that knowledge…

    i think basically we all know what we are good at by early teens….it’s also human nature to dream about something where perhaps we are not so deft…there are great examples of overcoming early negative critique of course…i am not talking about reports nor analysis from parents and teachers…i am talking about what we know inside….Daniel Johnston is soulful…his work comes from the heart…super “talent”? probably not from a purist perspective…yet he stepped out anyway….did what he “had” to do… hell with the critics….the irony of this is that he ended up creating master work….

    and this is why Burn is here……your potential venue….not one single thing keeping anyone back….

    big hugs, david

  175. DAVID! :) :)

    coool. I can totally see you digging Delill, just as i can see you totally digging Hemingway :)….

    “we simply cannot produce much’….

    that is SO IT, SO ON! :)…that’s the key….as i mentioned with your books, all very different and a small fraction of both the number of pics you’ve made and the amount of photo knowledge you have…

    (and would still love for you to make a conceptual book on kids…or Vietnam :) )….

    and that is the key: for a person not to be overwhelmed by what they can’t do or all the stuff they consume, but get in tune to what they can and must do…might not be alot, but it sure feels good, indeed :)

    and about books, totally read Finnegan’s new book (get one for Bry too): the best book i’ve ever read on surfing…

    big big hugs right back :)

  176. Ordering Information
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  177. Order through Amazon (photo-eye gets credit) Why Amazon?
    Flexibound $39.99 Amazon Price: $39.99 ISBN 098378647X
    In Stock! Usually ships in 1-2 business days.

    Or SIMPLY, order HERE at HOME ( BURNSTORE ) ,
    Get it while it lasts !

  178. that’s the best part, he doesn’t care. and he wins BIG in a very important way for that. love the work Panos.

  179. a civilian-mass audience

    Helloooo BURNIANS !!!

    I miss you my people…I love you ALLL !!!

    P.S…Dearest BURN CREW…which aisle is available for reporting ? I am bringing chickens,olives ( Euro Zone ) …ainte

  180. a civilian-mass audience

    oime…BOBBY…try to make this simple…geez,it will take me 2 days to go through…

    VIVA BURN …This is THE place To BE !!!

  181. TO ALL MY EUROPEAN COLLEAGUES/ newspapers / photojournalists

    We need to PROSECUTE this subhuman “photojournalist/reporter”, that neo Nazi monster that dares to represent the rest of us …
    Details on before above

  182. A camera operator for a Hungarian nationalist television channel closely linked to the country’s far-right Jobbik party has been filmed kicking two refugee children and tripping up a man at the border hotspot of Rőszke on Tuesday.

    Petra László of N1TV was filming a group of refugees running away from police officers, when a man carrying a child in his arms ran in front of her. László stuck her leg out in front of the man, causing him to fall on the child he was carrying. He turned back and remonstrated with László, who continued filming.

    A 20-second video of the scene was posted on Twitter by Stephan Richter, a reporter for the German television channel RTL and soon went viral, leading to the creation of a Facebook group “The Petra László Wall of Shame”.

    Hungary’s leading news website Index had also caught László kicking a young girl and boy.

    N1TV said László had been dismissed due to “unacceptable behaviour”. The channel’s editor in chief Szabolcs Kisberk said in a statement posted on the station’s website: “The camerawoman’s employment has today been terminated with immediate effect, the case is now closed for us.”

    As well as speeches made by the Jobbik leader Gábor Vona, the channel’s website also contains articles with such headlines as “migrants have swarmed all over the shops” and “Guantanamo = Hungary?”

    Hundreds of angry comments appeared on the Facebook group set up to condemn László’s actions on Tuesday evening.

    Opposition parties Együtt-PM and the Democratic Coalition have said that they will initiate charges of violence against a member of the community, which is punishable by up to five years in prison, against László.

    More news Topics

  183. EverydayClimateChange at Photoville / Indiegogo Crowdfunding campaign is LIVE!
    Photoville has invited EverydayClimateChange (@everydayclimatechange) Instagram feed to exhibit this year at its all-free admission photo festival this year in September!
    Partner with us as we present visual evidence of the challenges of climate change to a whole new audience.

    James W Delano–2/x/11870259#/story

  184. Now READ THIS:
    27000 immigrants arrived/SMUGGLED this week alone (in the greek island of LASBOS )…immigration services ineffective & slow… until the government EVENTUALLY sent a team organized mainly from NGO’S and they transferred in LAST two days ONLY the ones with refugee papers (9000 people and took them to Athens concentration camps/welcoming cdenters} … They(refugees) do not want to stay on the island nor in Athens ..they want want to go to richer countries , north Europe ….the exploitation is horrible …. from Turkish authorities and smugglers primarily but ALSO by some Greeks …. over here in MITILYNH THEY CHARGE the refugees 5 euros for half hour mobile charging ( 5 euros to charge their phones) ….
    the worst PART IS THAT THEY (smugglers/government IN TURKEY )massacred 18,000 Syrian children – number is still growing terribly in Turkey … get /STEAL their organs TO SELL them as transplants in the West … WHAT A SHAME…. … !!!
    what we already experienced , and live in daily basis is out of control….and we live in city of Mytilene capital of the ISLAND OF LESBOS is repulsive echoing of MIDDLE EAST WAR… … 17000 souls sleeping anywhere in the little town over here… they try to srvive INHUMANE CONDITIONS… all that in a little town consisted of less than 20000 greeks …

    (the text below has been translated from greek to english through GOOGLE TRANSLATOR, so bare with me)

    I HAVE BAD NEWS!!! VERY VERY BAD NEWS.. Please sit down before you read this .
    ( I’m NOT GONNA REVEAL MY SOURCES for SAFETY REASONS-their safety , of course )..

    (the text below has been translated from greek to english through GOOGLE TRANSLATOR, so bare with me)

    I HAVE BAD NEWS!!! VERY VERY BAD NEWS.. Please sit down before you read this .
    ( I’m NOT GONNA REVEAL MY SOURCES for SAFETY REASONS-their safety , of course )

    Now READ THIS:
    27000 immigrants arrived/SMUGGLED this week alone (in the greek island of LASBOS )…immigration services ineffective & slow… until the government EVENTUALLY sent a team organized mainly from NGO’S and they transferred in LAST two days ONLY the ones with refugee papers (9000 people and took them to Athens concentration camps/welcoming cdenters} … They(refugees) do not want to stay on the island nor in Athens ..they want want to go to richer countries , north Europe ….the exploitation is horrible …. from Turkish authorities and smugglers primarily but ALSO by some Greeks …. over here in MITILYNH THEY CHARGE the refugees 5 euros for half hour mobile charging ( 5 euros to charge their phones) ….
    the worst PART IS THAT THEY (smugglers/government IN TURKEY )massacred 18,000 Syrian children – number is still growing terribly in Turkey … get /STEAL their organs TO SELL them as transplants in the West … WHAT A SHAME…. … !!!
    what we already experienced , and live in daily basis is out of control….and we live in city of Mytilene capital of the ISLAND OF LESBOS is repulsive echoing of MIDDLE EAST WAR… … 17000 souls sleeping anywhere in the little town over here… they try to srvive INHUMANE CONDITIONS… all that in a little town consisted of less than 20000 greeks …

  187. I know a lot of you live in New York or at least spend some time there (or are moving there soon). Here’s a great article by Roy Edroso about New York in the 70’s, and by contrast, today.

  188. Nostalgia for the 70’s in NYC is a lot of bs. There was nothing memorable about it if you were an elderly person trapped in your apartment by the fear of crime, nothing at all.

  189. MW,

    I followed your link and read the piece. I could easily write something similar about New York in the 60s, my friend Everett who started the film program at the School of Visual Arts could write it about the 50s, no doubt a few still living could write it about the 40s, and if you really want to get nostalgic for a New York Bohemian scene that is no more, go back to the Village of the nineteen ‘teens when seminal figures like Max Eastman, John Reed, John Sloan, George Bellows, Alfred Steichen, Emma Goldmann, Mabel Dodge, Eugene O’Neill, and Edna St. Vincent Millay walked the streets, drank, argued, loved, and hated.. for anyone who experienced the decade of their youthful and early adult awakening in New York, no subsequent decade or generation had it as good. Now that no one except lawyers, doctors, and hedge fund managers can afford to live in Manhattan (or even the better parts of Brooklyn these days, so I hear) perhaps this cycle of Bohemian history and nostalgia will finally be broken, who knows?

  190. “perhaps this cycle of Bohemian history and nostalgia will finally be broken…”

    Well, I trust New York will always have its Bohemian history and nostalgia, as Roy illustrates here:

    But if we are talking about the arts, and the developments in New York life that cause them to not only survive but also thrive and coalesce into movements that inform and uplift American and even world culture, someone will have to explain to me how the current era is ever going to make that happen. Mind you, that may not be the era’s fault; we are in a famously atomized social media environment, where it’s not as easy as it once was for a few critics and artists to bum-rush the show. But when your idea of the Next Big Thing is not, say, punk rock, which is still happening (albeit in a debased form) decades later, but artisanal hobo bindles from Williamsburg…

    Nowadays, its Bohemian tales are told by Lena Dunham and Noah Baumbach rather than any new Henry Miller, whose forebears were successively priced out of the Lower East Side and then Williamsburg, or fled for the safety of some bedroom community in Jersey. Ah well, perhaps there will always be somewhere for disaffected youth with rich creative lives who revel in living poor. Seems to me its shifted more to the Pacific Northwest, in the U.S. at least. Don’t know about Europe. Can one still live poor in Paris and London?

  191. MW,

    I think Paris has long since become a theme park for the rich.. my second-and-third-hand understanding is that Berlin, with lots of cheap housing and abandoned factory spaces, is the new bohemian artistic hub of Europe.

  192. Sidney,
    Thank you for input and links .. I need as much info as I can about this magical METROPOLIS that has all kind of different “reputations”…
    Can’t wait to start discovering what’s its in my head this time !!!
    I’ll be happy to meet you all

  193. PANOS,

    Since you asked for it, here is your homework. My list of the sooner-or-later ‘must=see’ films and books for understanding the history and society of New York, particularly in its more bohemian aspects, over the last hundred years or so, more or less in chronological order, not necessarily of when they were made, but in terms of the eras they refer to. I’m sure other readers and commenters like MW or Bob Black could make many helpful additions, and I admit to being weaker on the post-2000 era than I am on previous decades. But I think this list has stood and will stand the test of time. Naturally I don’t expect you will watch or read everything here, but I think you’ll find whichever ones you sample will significantly reward your attention as art and also greatly increase your understanding of what New York has been over a long period of time. Good luck!

    New York Films and Books

    ‘Age of Innocence’ dir. Martin Scorsese
    ‘Alfred Stieglitz– The Eloquent Eye’ (PBS documentary avail. on Youtube– about much more than just Stieglitz or photography))
    ‘Reds’ dir. Warren Beatty
    ‘The Cotton Club’ dir. Francis Ford Coppola
    ‘Bullets Over Broadway’ dir. Woody Allen
    ‘On the Waterfront’ dir. Elia Kazan
    ‘West Side Story’ dir. Jerome Robbins
    ‘A Fine Madness’ dir. Irvin Kershner
    ‘Manhattan’ dir. Woody Allen
    ‘Taxi Driver’ dir. Martin Scorsese
    ‘The French Connection’ dir. William Friedkin
    ‘Shaft’ dir. Gordon Parks
    ‘Serpico’ dir. Sidney Lumet
    ‘Midnight Cowboy’ dir. John Schlesinger
    ‘The Warriors’ dir. Walter Hill
    ‘Fame’ dir. Alan Parker (1980 version)
    ‘Wall Street’ dir. Oliver Stone
    ‘Do the Right Thing’ dir. Spike Lee

    ‘Call It Sleep’ by Henry Roth
    ‘The Great Gatsby’ by F. Scott Fitzgerald
    ‘Tropic of Capricorn’ by Henry Miller
    ‘You Can’t Go Home Again’ by Thomas Wolfe
    ‘A Tree Grows in Brooklyn’ by Betty Smith
    ‘Invisible Man’ by Ralph Ellison
    ‘The Catcher in the Rye’ by J.D. Salinger
    ‘Really the Blues’ by Mezz Mezzrow
    ‘V.’ by Thomas Pynchon
    ‘Positively 4th Street’ by David Hajdu
    ‘Up Against the Wall Motherfuckers’ by Osha Neumann
    ‘Just Kids’ by Patti Smith
    ‘Mambo Kings Play Songs of Love’ by Oscar Hijuelos
    ‘Bright Lights, Big City’ by Jay MacInerney
    ‘The Bonfire of the Vanities’ by Tom Wolfe
    ‘Super Sad True Love Story’ by Gary Shteyngart
    ‘Girl In Translation’ by Jean Kwok
    ‘The Flamethrowers’ by Rachel Kushner

    ‘Howl’ by Allen Ginsberg


    And incidentally, just today the NY Times has a long story about how now that Manhattan, Brooklyn, and even parts of QUeens are way too expensive for starving artists, the new up-and-coming place to look for cheap digs and a scene that’s under the radar at the moment but will soon be very much happening is the South Bronx:

    Good luck apartment hunting!

  194. “for starving artists, the new up-and-coming place to look for cheap digs and a scene that’s under the radar at the moment but will soon be very much happening is the South Bronx”

    Personally, I’d go Coney Island or the Rockaways, but I’ve always been something of a beach bum.

    And books-wise, Sidney, “Basketball Diaries” isn’t first on your list? What’s up with that?

  195. If everyone got into arguing about Sidney’s list, this could go on for awhile. For example, regarding Spike Lee films, I’d definitely put 25th hour up at or near the top. Red Hook Summer is important as well, and one might even include Summer of Sam. And currently, for those who know the town, the television show Mr. Robot is great for identifying New York locations. It was pretty much filmed on my old walking around circuit in Brooklyn and the Lower East Side.

  196. MW,

    Sure, why not… the list was never meant to be definitive or final, or even up to date, just a place to start from, though if it gets TOO long it perhaps becomes less useful, i.e. HOW MANY books by Henry Miller or films by Spike Lee should there be?.. How many stories of drug addiction or coming of age? How much serious stuff and how much comedy or glitz? Everyone will have their own answers. I feel I left out lots of important stuff (Norman Mailer? Leroi Jones? James Baldwin? Brian de Palma?), and I’m sure I’ve overlooked or am just plain ignorant of plenty more. Everyone will have different versions. But I tried to keep it manageably short. Feel free to change, amend, correct, reject, or ignore!!


  197. AKAKY,

    Yes, of course, I hesitated over ‘Naked City’ and have no problems with its inclusion.

    The William Klein film of Broadway neon was totally new for me and totally brilliant. Many thanks for alerting me (us all) to it!

  198. Panos! It took me forever to find the end of this thread but I just wanted to tell you I love the book (so much as I have seen anyway) and that I think you are utterly, irrevocably and completely a brilliant artist!

    I just have one question… Who do you want to play you when they do the movie of your life?

    Biggest congratulations, love and hugs



  199. SIR Medford , you’re one of my mentors too.. I closely follow your work and all I can say is : Thank you and see you sooner or later.. Comments like yours coming from a legend ? It keeps me going .

  200. a civilian-mass audience

    Dearest SIDNEY …oime, for years I carry with me your book list BUT a Film list???

    What not to love !!!

  201. To avoid any misunderstandings that’s not pun intended to Imants nor my New Zealand beloved Ross nor my hybrid friend kerry ,etc.
    Btw. If anyone takes it personally YOU Obviously deserve it so FUCK YOU

  202. Oh .. Laughing.. Btw .. Already got some Hate mail .. You idiots !!! Kissing ass is easier than tell it like it is … So … Avoid the truth all u want … U lil thieves , accidentally “successful” hoes etc , keep sucking , remember u mean nothing to the ART WORLD .. therefore u mean nothing to me… Keep sucking … Need a straw ? Didn’t think so ;)
    Ok later

  203. Thanks to Matthew Busch, we have a guest interview spotlight this week, including for the first time an audio interview for The Image, Deconstructed. Check out the interview (and audio) this weekend! As always, if you want to do an interview, or have a recommendation for one, we’d love to hear it! Thanks to all who continue to support this ongoing project, it’s been amazing.

  204. I got to sit down with Panos Skoulidas before he skipped out of San Antonio a few weeks back. Check out our conversation about his photobook Death in Venice this coming week on The Image Deconstructed.

  205. Leonard Cohen – Everybody Knows

    Everybody knows that the dice are loaded
    Everybody rolls with their fingers crossed
    Everybody knows that the war is over
    Everybody knows the good guys lost
    Everybody knows the fight was fixed
    The poor stay poor, the rich get rich
    That’s how it goes
    Everybody knows…

    Good light y’all

  206. “Positively 4th Street”

    You got a lotta nerve
    To say you are my friend
    When I was down you just stood there grinning
    You got a lotta nerve
    To say you gotta helping hand to lend
    You just want to be on the side that’s winning

    You say I let you down
    You know it’s not like that
    If your so hurt why then don’t you show it
    You say you’ve lost your faith
    But that’s not where it’s at
    You have no faith to lose and you know it

    I know the reason
    that you talk behind my back
    I used to be among the crowd you’re in with
    Do you take me for such a fool
    To think I’d make contact
    With the on who tries to hide what it don’t know to begin with

    You see me on the street
    You always act surprised
    You say how are you good luck but you don’t mean it
    When you know as well as me
    You’d rather see me paralyzed
    Why don’t you just come out once and scream it

    No I do not feel that good
    when I see the heartbreaks you embrace
    If I was a master thief perhaps I’d rob them
    And though I know your dissatisfied
    With your position and your place
    Don’t you understand it’s not my problem

    I wish that for just one time
    You could stand inside my shoes
    And for just that one moment I could be you
    Yes I wish that for just one time
    You could stand inside my shoes
    You’d know what a drag it is to see you

  207. John you’re right !
    Remember only few years back the attention span was around 3 minutes ??? Doesn’t matter if it was a song or video .
    Now it’s down to 30 seconds .. That’s why ( see magisto) so many video editing APPS software for phones now… Anything over 30 seconds to a minute and you’re in a danger zone to lose the consumer

  208. “its a FREE DOWNLOAD for anyone wants to use FREE music for slideshows without the fear of getting blocked, muted, harassed or sued…”

    Thats all well and good, but how many people actually have a clunky clip art animation they made in Highschool in 1990 that they have been holding back from the world for lack of just the right slacker beatbox jam? :)

  209. I’ll gladly answer to a question nobody asked me:
    What’s my opinion about critics ? Well, i think it’s just a job like any other job I guess.
    I prefer using my time into creating playing and building “things”. They prefer checking things out and critique. Fine with me . As long as they have fun too it’s all groovy.
    But yeah sure why not . Critics need to make a living too.
    Music , books , paintings , football etc..
    Seems it’s always gonna be like that . The ones that spending their time inside the football field rain or snow ,
    and the ones sitting comfortably in a waterproof booth judging the players or commenting on their game ..
    Whatever makes u happy ! Some enjoy playing some enjoy watching..
    Some do both ..
    I generally have no issues with either one of these tribes.

    Now since I’m asked what’s my theory about sharing? I personally love it. If I could offer anything I do for free id happily do it.. But unfortunately it’s not always possible…

  210. Now I’ve a question that’s bothering me since I was 5 years old.
    What’s the attention span of an adult in the 21st century?
    And I’m talking music of course..
    3 minutes? 2? 1? It doesn’t matter? It depends of the theme ?
    How about movies ?
    2 hours? For a feature film? 10 minutes for a short ?
    Why do I have a feeling that attention span has been cut in half with the arrival of the new century?
    And if that’s true , why? Is Ritalin use a necessity? Or a symptom?

  211. Burn was much more interesting back when you were a critic, Panos. I’m guessing your still the same critic, but have simply retired your critical thought from the public sphere.

    One can be both a creator and a critic. Could argue that most people can’t be very good at the former without being the latter. Thinking critically about what one does is how most people get better.

    Of course publicly sharing criticisms of others work is a different issue. From the creator side, some people love being critiqued, others not so much. Then of course there’s a wide range between thoughtful, insightful critiquing and mindless slagging.

    Personally, I’ve always found total silence to be the most devastating critique, and would much prefer “your work sucks because [insightful reasons]” to “great job!!!”

    Your mileage may vary, but I figure; if you put your stuff out there, you are – if not asking for it – certainly accepting the fact that criticism might happen.

    And hey, if you don’t like it, you can always criticize the critic. Same rules apply (there are no rules), or conventions of common decency (those, there are).

  212. As to your questions about attention span, I think that in this day and age with all of the mvoies and tv and books and blog posts and medications (fuck Ritalin, Modafinil!) and different seasons and spring flowers and dark and stormy nights… Umm, what were we talking about?

  213. And true also. How can one evolve in creativity without being a critic at the same time…

    Damn …, you just made me nostalgic… I miss the fun days too.. We were all pushing each other and that can be highly productive and helpful at times … I don’t know what happened…! I guess Burn was more linear or how can I say it , it was easier to find the MAIN ROOM back in the day ..
    When later Burn because kind of too big , with tons of material in all directions, I think we all were looking to find each other from one room to another , and Burn became so rich that I personally speaking at least was struggling to even keep up with the new stuff , new material… It was pretty much a full time job to critique so many stories in such a little time …
    I feel very nostalgic now …

    And yes fuck Ritalin …
    Wtf was I talking about btw???
    Ha ha! Missed you brother , missed those days .
    We are still learning and critiquing but we kind of all entered in a silent mode..
    And silence is LOUD .. Too loud … And way too serious ..
    Hmmm… Maybe it’s time to switch gears and start having a little fun again …
    I’m missing all of our “online parties” terribly

  214. Oh u know what else???
    I think it’s Facebook that killed our fun.
    Now most of us have our own little “stores”, and many
    important and vibrant conversations slowly moved to Facebook..
    Facebook became the MAIN ROOM and BURN became the SHOW ROOM..
    All the nastiness disappeared ..
    I miss the good ol NASTY BURN DAYS..
    Fucking Facebook piece of shit …;)

  215. I’m guessing your still the same critic, but have simply retired your critical thought from the public sphere.

    I think u nailed it. I want my nastiness back . I became an old boring politically correct (non) commentator .. I hope it wasn’t political correctness and fear that decided for me to start Playing it safe out of fear of sales , or I putting customer satisfaction ahead of keeping it real.. That would be lame … I’d never forgive myself if i start suspecting or find out that fear and need for approval shut me down…
    I still wanna blame Facebook for everything… I don’t want Burn to be only a show room… There are so much to learn from each other’s input. That was priceless.. Fucking Zuckerberg he completely changed the ways of communicating with each other.
    We all have our personal stores now,all too self absorbed, we have no time for each other anymore… I hate to walk in in a SILENT EXHIBITION.. That’s why I dislike libraries and even museums.
    I NEED MY DRINK BACK plz.. Where is the bartender? Too many rooms , the pub became a 3 story dancing club or a public library ..
    We need a bartender and A DJ back ASAP

  216. John ,
    What do u think is going to happen to those millions of jobs that will be replaced by robots?
    I think Carls Jr fast food CEO claims will be the 1st franchise that soon will use ZERO EMPLOYEES.
    Amazon will use drones for delivery . Airplanes already are being replaced by drones ,the new Tesla S is driving AND can do parallel park hands free . The new GOOGLE and APPLE car is already in the streets . You actually ask your car to go pick up your laundry or the kids from school , toll posts already replaced minimum wage workers , movie theaters , subways train stations too…
    And we wanna think : how great : look how many inventions that will allow us a 4 or 3 or even 2 day week…
    But how about the ZERO DAYS A WEEK schedule.
    What’s gonna happen to the already STARVING BILLIONS of humans ..? They already can’t find any kind of work and now Pizza Delivery is also extinct. I saw yesterday the first DOMINO’s PIZZA robot delivery vehicle … HOW those billions of the poor will generate any income to order that pizza?
    Unless all of the Earthians become painters, actors and artists … Until that day? Houston we gonna soon have a serious problem…

  217. Panos,
    Finland is the first country to experiment with unconditional basic income. There will be more automation, for cost-saving, for convenience, you name it. My whole profession circles around automation, which is now called digital these days. Uber buys many cars, which eventually will drive you – without a driver – from a to b. Maybe driving for humans will be prohibited after a number of self-driving cars are on the streets.
    Society will change in dramatic ways, maybe money will completely lose the significance and importance it has today. maybe a big wave will wash everyone off the earth. Then automation becomes key!

    Ah, and the attention span – 8 seconds. Shorter than goldfish, says the Telegraph in the UK.

  218. Oh gosh , Thomas..
    I’m not ignoring your comment, super interesting but after the BELGIUM drama…
    I’ll leave comments for later . I’m trying to figure/digest/understand it out …
    What a shitty day

  219. a civilian-mass audience

    Terrorism is the war’s baby and we have to end the madness now. Fences, closed borders and guns are not the answer. Peace is the only way. We are all one !!!

    as PANOS said : BELGIUM, STAY STRONG !!!

    reporting from Grecolandia (BURNING Spot)

  220. On my knees .
    Note to EUROPE and my fellow Greeks :
    PLEASE HELP THE SYRIANS and all refugees.
    Don’t get confused by the Euro Governments propaganda.
    HELP THE REFUGEES. Open your houses , share your food , please , I BEG YOU.
    ( don’t worry if the Skopje or Austria or Hungary / Czech Republic GOVERNMENTS ( not the people) …etc HATE THEM , don’t stress of “the Euro monsters ” because they SHUTTING DOWN THEIR BORDERS. History will judge them .
    Terrorists will always find a way … What happened in Belgium is disgusting, but remember: the poor refugees in EDOMENI GREECE are trapped , they are DYING FROM DISEASE and famine .. HELP THEM… Embrace them …

    “Tell yourselves the truth … It’s in your gut …Otherwise you’re hiding a TREASURE ”

  221. Btw , the above post also goes for my beloved USA..
    Remember, STEVE JOBS, the iPhone creator, yes yes that little machine you’re reading my comments right now, was the SON of a Syrian REFUGEE..
    And speaking about APPLE,
    Big THANK YOU for refusing to give away our liberties . We need stronger encryption software. APPLE, mr. TIM COOK , don’t give in to FBI THREATS .
    Protect our data ..
    And to that REDNECK from NYC.. Mr.Donald SMURF , go FUCK YOURSELF

  222. Thank you Mike. My neanear death step onto quicksand-like sea slush I mistook for sea ice has led to an incredible experience for me. A friend in Barrow started that fund for me and it just might make it. greatly appreciate the help.

  223. Akaky ,
    I’m not bet a penny but it doesn’t seem that they going anywhere..
    First it was Grexit then it is Brexit . As philosopher Gladdy said once . They’re all Europe’s lil “bitches”…. Everyone’s leaving yet everyone’s staying . Yada yada yada .. Empty threats … Viva Catalonia , viva Scotland!

  224. PANOS.

    GREECE. was forced to haggle for terms to stay in europe and avoid bankruptcy, due in large part to massive instituional corruption. That those terms are onerous to the greek people is a given. europe wanted greece out. Greece agreed to be europe and IMF etc Bitch in order to be allowed to stay. Greek people suffer.

    BRITAIN. The people (NOT THE POLITICIANS) of Britain have demanded and been given a free vote on whether to stay or leave Europe. We have no debt. we are not being forced. There is no austerity programme. In fact all the powers that be in europe want us to stay. So whether we remain or leave will be decided by the person in the street. No bitches here :)

  225. John I agree..

    Btw , PRINCE found dead in Minnesota.. RIP..

    According to the media :

    “singer had been battling “a bad bout of flu” and had been hospitalized last week, apparently in relation to his illness. ”
    Hmmmm sounds like a disease that killed lots and lots of young and not so young folks so far..
    But it’s not confirmed yet ( the actual cause , I mean )

  226. I’m on bike ride as we speak , carrying my guitar . Heavy distortion and 4 songs I recorded while riding an Electra on the back roads somewhere in Jersey Shore . Stay tuned , I’ll post my songs that accompany my video in a few minutes . Let me clean up first .
    The songs you gonna hear while watching what my GOPRO on helmet recorded are:

    Don’t go away . Coming up in a few.

  227. Composing my new song ..
    Instrumental , SOFT VERSION , that means no solo guitars yet , no lead either and no lyrics ..
    Stay tuned with the HARD VERSION..

  228. LYRICS:


    Adam lost his cane
    All kids are insane
    Husband killed his wife
    Love is bleeding there
    MD lost a life
    Man as wild as a bear
    I’ve a muscle tear
    Navy shot a flare
    They said don’t you dare
    Fighting dirty?
    Ain’t taking you anywhere
    Only man last stands
    Anthony Bourdsin

    My new “short”/long of myself “connecting” to that middle class feeling simply by WASHING MY OWN DISHES .. ( shot by my gopro – from inside looking out or from below looking up..
    Yes I’m inspired again ! I’m recording music daily and I’m focusing in the mundane with passion , trying to stay away from the big city lights as possible


    New “short” videoclip and also a new song:
    “The inevitable Sunrise of Yesterday”
    Music ( composed and recorded )
    By ( yours trully )
    Panos Skoulidas

  231. a civilian-mass audience

    Hijacking again…my Greco friend …

    Happy Birthday MR.HARVEY !!!

    Vivaaaaaa BURN !!!

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