Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Dreams...

"They who dream by day are cognizant of many things which escape those who dream only by night."
-Edgar Allan Poe

I have the amazing Emily to thank for reminding me of this. Dream on dreamers of the world, for you are the only ones who can shape your destiny...

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Friday, December 25, 2009

Fudge, Family, & Electric Sex in the Window...

There are Christmas cookies from my mom this year. Sent in a brown box all the way inland from Ohio. There is snow on the ground, warm blankets, and my brother Jeff asleep on the couch. My father and I just woke to start prepping the turkey. And the merry wishes via text have already started. The phone calls, arrival of my brother, Brian, and visits to close friends will become a thread of this day, too.

These things all mean Christmas to me. But the one thing that really makes it hit home is the classic movie "A Christmas Story." It is a tradition, and when we are done eating and all full of turkey, we will watch it lazily and gloriously as Ralphie and his family have to "Far ra ra ra ra" through the holiday.

From my house and heart to yours, have a very Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays!

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Thursday, December 24, 2009

The Best Walk Down the Aisle...EVER!

If this isn't the happiest, most fun, awesome walk (ah-hem, dance!) down the aisle that you've ever seen, then I'd like you to show me one that tops it. A friend showed this to me the other day, and I just beam with joy and my heart fills up when I watch it. A true celebration of a very happy union. Please take a few minutes to enjoy this...trust me, it will make your heart happy :)

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

A Glimpse of a Wedding: Tom & Karen

It was one of the coolest, fun, happy weddings that I've ever had the honor to take part in. Karen and Tom are not your usual couple, and they decided not to follow conventional wedding procedure. What I mean by this is that the celebration following their nuptials was a bird-watching tour on RiverQuest cruises on the CT River. This was the the time of year that barn swallows liked to put on a grand show for all who watched...every night in September they flock from all over and gather to swarm up and down by the thousands, in a very amazing and entertaining show, making fast formations and swirls before diving down into the grass. And they do this over and over before they say goodnight. I've never seen anything like it.

Karen and Tom are so cute and playful together that my face ached from all my smiling. I simply couldn't help it. I can honestly say that these two give me something so happy and joyous to strive towards in my own journey for love. And for that, I thank them. I'm a better and happier person for having been part of their wedding day, and I hope you can see why when you check out these photographs. This is merely a peek into the magic of the day, as there are limitations to the amount I can show. Please enjoy!

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Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Beneath the Gown's New Banner!

Beneath the Gown couture lingerie studio has recently released the design of their new banner, and the photograph on it is from yours truly. I love the way it came out! And the very clever Christine Toner from Stonington Design and Paperie was the creative who designed it. Make sure to check out www.stoningtonpaperie.com for all of your design needs!

Beneath the Gown is a unique boutique featuring European designs as well as custom-made pieces by the one and only owner of the store, Josie Jolon. I don't have enough kind words to say about Josie. She will give you the highest customer service possible by taking you in and making you feel at home. And empowered. Josie's designs just make you feel soooo sexy. So, please check out all that she has to offer (including designs catered to those who've had a mastectomy and menswear as well) and even more of my photographs at www.beneaththegown.com.

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Monday, December 21, 2009

Happy 1st Birthday, Burn Magazine!

One year ago today, a new online magazine launched, and with it hopes and dreams hatched and crawled, walked and ran, and surged and soared. BuRNmagazine.org was the new school of an older blog called "Road Trips," both of which are headed up by a seemingly tireless David Alan Harvey. A very well-known photographer, DAH is a member of the prestigious Magnum Agency and has also shot about 40 stories for National Geographic.

David's vision is not only magical and intriguing when he's behind the lens, but also inspiring and electrifying as a visionary in field of photography. A teacher and mentor since the age of 22, DAH has been refining the way that photographers see, and helping his students realize what it means to make a photograph and not just take a picture. For those of you who follow my blog, you know that I had the pleasure of taking a workshop with David entitled "The Art of the Photographic Essay." This workshop was a five day marathon of photography, and encompassed learning, meeting, networking, seeing, frustration, and success. It took place right before the LOOK3 Festival of the Photograph, which kicked off with a show of the students' work. Oh, I also should mention that the workshop was taught in conjunction with another professor of photography, the incomparable James Nachtwey. And if you are a photographer and you don't know the work or mission of James Nachtwey, then study him. Immediately. He uses photography as a tool to effect change in global health, and the photographs are simultaneously the most beautiful and tragic pieces of art to have ever crossed my sight.

Anyway, back to DAH and BuRN. As an evolving online journal, the mission of BuRN was to showcase the work of emerging photographic talent. The work submitted is shown in the form of photo essays and single stills. Having a blog-like set-up, BuRN allows for threads of conversation and discussion to occur about the work posted. In this format, a community was born and quickly spread worldwide. It's an active community of bright, witty, poetic, challenging, stubborn, and interesting visual artists. And at LOOK3, I got the chance to meet several of them whose names, writing styles, and work I've come to know. It's a photographic community that is unique and growing, where new artists' work stands with known artists' work, and the opportunity to be showcased is open to anyone brave enough to submit...and then be chosen, of course.

BuRN moves ever forward with the use of David's Brooklyn loft as a gallery for BuRN artists. The magazine also gives a grant once per year called the Emerging Photographer Grant, and with support from Magnum, the EPF has grown to $15,000 for the winning 2010 recipient. With all of this forward motion and upward initiative, BuRN magazine was also the Lucie Award recipient for Photography Magazine of the Year. All this achievement, and in less than one year. I'm proud to say that I was published on BuRN this year with a still from my self-portrait project.

The BuRN community is a proud and grateful one, so to honor David and the first birthday of this wonderful journal, two of the burnian community decided to showcase an appreciative celebration. Thanks to Haik and Lassal, a secret website was set up to gather photographs from the BuRN community. These images were going into a few different categories, one of which was BuRN moments (documented from workshops, meetings, LOOK3, DAH's loft and house in the OBX) and one was a call for photographs with the word BuRN in them somewhere. The website, along with a link from BuRN, was published today. I submitted photographs in both categories, but what follows is from a photoshoot I set up for my submission to the latter category, a BuRN word within. You can check out all the work at burnmagazine.org and burnians.com.


Happy Birthday, BuRN! Congratulations, David and the BuRN staff. I can't wait to see what year #2 will yield. I'm so excited to be a part of this community.

My homage to the 1950s proud housewife, who BuRNed some pancakes...

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Sunday, December 20, 2009

Photographer Spotlight: Inspired by Sally Mann

As a visual artist, I derive inspiration from everywhere and everything, and try to touch on different senses and emotions when showing my art. I do a lot of research in order to find out more, whether it's discovering new (to me) photographers or new techniques for shooting or showing, or simply finding new ways to see light. In these discoveries, I have found many photographers that are near and dear to my heart, and one that resounds continuously with me is Sally Mann. Noted as one of the best American photographers, she gained much prestige and a little notoriety with the large format photographs of her children. Along with the haunted quality, the state of nudity and sometimes angst-intense expressions of her children all caused a bit of controversy. This, however, is what made them great. A mother exploring the journey of a child, bearing witness to the child-related themes of insecurity, loneliness, injury, sexuality and death. As Wikipedia noted, "Mann herself considered these photographs to be 'natural through the eyes of a mother, since she has seen her children in every state: happy, sad, playful, sick, bloodied, angry and even naked.' "

Following is a collage of some of Mann's photographs of her children. I maintain the highest respect for her artistic eye and intuitive and introspective curiosity and love. Sally Mann is a legend and a wonderful inspiration.

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Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Baby love...excitedly expecting

Meghan and Adam are just about as cute as you can get. I'm not just referring to their great looks, but also to the tenderness with which they treat each other. It was obvious how excited these two are about expecting their first child, and I was ecstatic to be able to capture this moment for them. This session was bordering on the 7 1/2 month mark, and I think that Meghan looks simply gorgeous. And it seemed fitting and classic to keep it black and white...

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