Category Archives: documentary/photojournalism

Stars in Her Eyes

Taken with the 24mm f/1.4.

From Cai and Johnny’s wedding. I’m still getting files out to clients for the holidays, but I think I’ll hold off on full wedding blogs until I get back from Italy in the New Year. I also have a review of the Nikon 35mm f/1.4 ready to go for ’11!


Photos of the Day: Soulja Boy and Keri Hilson in Concert

Yesterday I was selected as the photographer for the launch of five new products in Monster’s Beats by Dre line, a series of high-end headphones (and now a high-end iPod dock) partnered with hip-hop legend Dr. Dre and a series of other celebrities, from LeBron James to Justin Bieber.

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(I love photos that look totally surreal even though they’re basically out-of-camera; this was just a white balance and contrast shift)

I have a feeling that publishing unapproved candids of Dr. Dre is the kind of thing that would lead publicists to shove flaming bamboo shoots under my fingernails, so I’ll hold off on that. But I also had the run of the place for the launch concert featuring Soulja Boy and Keri Hilson.

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Soulja Boy makes it rain $100 bills as his pants finally give up.

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Keri Hilson, a split-second before the curtain opens.

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That’s some microphone.


Photo of the Day: The Joy of Youth

The ring-bearer plays with flower petals after the ceremony.

More nostalgia. This was from the first wedding I ever booked, though I shot it four months later than the wedding from yesterday. Confused? That’s how I was before I got used to knowing exactly where I’ll be on a Saturday two years from now.


Photo of the Day: The Beginning of a Long Journey

Here’s a bit of nostalgia, a nice moment from the first wedding I ever shot as the primary photographer. The ceremony was out on a little island, and the groom, an extremely athletic Man of the Mountains, rowed them both out there in their own canoe. I think I may have been standing up in another canoe to get this shot, which shows that I was never very bright with my equipment.


Photo of the Day: One Last Spray

One Last Spray

The make-up artist sprays Alicia’s face so the make-up will stay in palce before yesterday’s wedding. This image was taken with free-lensing, meaning the lens was off the camera and held in my hand.

(Happy Memorial Day to my American readers!)

(EXIF and GPS)


Photos of the Day: Take Your Sons and Daughters to Work @ Fordham U

I got my start in photojournalism and spent years working for Columbia University as a photographer, doing mostly documentary work, so I’m glad to intersperse my wedding work with institutional clients, and particularly my undergraduate alma mater and frequent client Fordham University. And there’s nothing more fun in the corporate photography world than being handed a broad assignment with “tell a good story.” So I had a great time covering the recent “Take Your Sons and Daughters to Work Day.” Fordham did their best to make this a great experience for the kids while keeping the cogs of the university turning, with tours and events all over campus to show them different facets of Fordham professional life. Here is a sample of the day:

Students wander the halls of WFUV, Fordham’s acclaimed radio station

Students, with new t-shirts, watch a chemistry demonstration

Goggles upon glasses.

A student makes sure his work is right as they test acids versus bases.

Rapt attention.

Students make their own races during the roll call.

Doing their best to put themselves in sugar shock at a “Make Your Own Cupcake” station

Students race at the ROTC demonstration

Reporting for duty


It Pays to be Creepy, Part II

I’ve already discussed how my job makes me feel creepy because it’s good to take interest in the way romance plays out in the real world. But there’s more. I have always had a strange sort of photographic memory (pun not intended). If I’ve taken your photo, ever, I remember your face. I remember that I’ve taken a photo looks. I remember what that photo looked like and the expression you were making. But I often will have no recollection of the context, when or where the event was taken. The problem comes from what happens when you’ve taken photos of literally tens of thousands of people — for years I couldn’t walk around the Columbia University area without constant bouts of deja vu as people walked by me.

And, of course, the creepiness. I was in a coffeeshop waiting for the couple for today’s engagement shoot, and I sat next to a young woman. My brow furrowed. Do I say it?

“There’s really no way for this not to sound terrible, but I’ve taken your picture somewhere. Did you go to Columbia?”

No, it turned out, but she was in Rebekah and Jonah’s Korean/Jewish extravaganza.

So how does it pay to be creepy, other than remembering a great day (that has an album coming up soon)? This sort of memory has always been a huge advantage for me as an event photographer. I like to try to get photos of as many guests as possible, and even in gigantic events I can always remember at a glance which guests I’ve gotten good photos of and which I haven’t, giving clients as robust coverage as possible. So I guess I’ll have to live with the deja vu.

It also says something interesting about the profound cognitive effect the process of taking photos and reviewing them can have, at least for me, since I do not have a particularly good memory for your face if I haven’t taken your photo.