I attended a Little Havana walking tour that I used as a photowalk for my group. The tour was led by Miami Historian, Dr. Paul George. It started at the Tower Theater on 8th Street and headed West through many of the first neighborhoods in Miami during the turn of the century. I realized how new Miami is after walking through areas near 15th avenue that were Groves and Pineapple Plantations. West of 27th avenue was considered the Everglades. Imagine that. The area near the Tower Theater is not a new or modern epicenter of Miami activity. Many of Miami's most prominent families lived, worked and played in the area. The most colorful place I encountered was the Ball and Chain. The Ball and Chain was and is a Nightclub across from the Tower Theater that used to be a Gambling Club when Gambling was highly illegal. At first the club had doormen to ensure that only trusted people, and not police could enter. After a time, the "Wild West" attitude of Miami removed the need for doormen at the Ball and Chain and illegal activity brazenly thrived with the knowledge of the authorities. Here are some of my images from the tour. I encourage anyone seeking a more historical perspective to check out Dr. Georges walks.
I flew to Salem, North Carolina from Cape Town, South Africa to photograph my son's wedding. I would not normally recommend this, however...Read More
My Granddaughters have become accustomed to my camera being around and the constant clicking of the shutter in their direction. They are so cool because they love our portrait outings or literally in this case my seeing a great background and suggesting portraits. They loved the idea probably because I allow them to be themselves. We had so much fun. These are a few of the ones I really liked.
I woke up this morning to an ocean, that for Cape Town, almost looked like a lake. Though there were small waves, it was very calm. I knew that if I just looked carefully enough during these conditions, it would not be difficult to spot the Whales. I opened the blinds and I did not have to search. They were about 50-100 yards off the beach. Right in front of my place. The last time I saw them they were much farther off. I made some photos of what I saw this morning and you can see those below. What I tried to emphasize was perspective. I wanted to show their size and how close they were to shore. These are the Southern Right Whales. They come close to shore between June and November to calve and feed their newborns. As such you do not see them breach (jumping out of the water). It paid off being patient though. The last few images were of the tail. Enjoy!
Ever since I can remember my Mother would draw. Sometimes with pencil, and sometimes with charcoal. It was a repressed passion. Not by anyone, but by circumstances called life as a career woman with children. After her retirement she has become very prolific in her creativity taking up the most difficult of painting, being watercolor. She has exhibited in shows, galleries, museums, and sold her works and prints. To everyone's joy she always paints birthday cards. Original watercolors. Here is an image of a card she sent me from an image I made while on a Safari in Kruger National Park in South Africa. I treasure these and do not take them for granted. She is an artistic inspiration! My365Project - 146/365.
My photography group here in Cape Town, South Africa planned an excursion to West Coast National Park near a city in South Africa called Langebaan. I've been hearing for a long time that it's a must see place because of the flowers blooming in Spring here in the Cape. Yes Northern Hemisphere dwellers, it's Springtime here in South Africa. Langebaan is about 105km from Cape Town. If you want it in miles it's a little over 60 miles. We wanted to start out early to avoid the crowds and we planned well, or better said Sarah, the planner, set it up it perfectly. We were the third car through the gate. There is a special area in WCNP called the Pottsberg area where the Flowers are best and the area is only open in August and September as it is a fragile eco-system. I guess I shouldn't say that too loudly or someone will try to drill for oil on it. I was the passenger this time, in the back seat and it was great. We were headed down the road and I saw Ostriches that I wanted to photograph. The South African's I was driving with said not to be silly there are Ostriches everywhere. Well I finally convinced them to stop and I made these images of either an angry or a very sexually driven Ostrich.
As we kept driving I still had my medium zoom lens on the camera and I saw what looked like a Buffalo off in the mist. It was running faster than the car, and I got my long zoom on just in time to catch only one image of a Black Wildebeast.
The rest of the day was just magnificent. The flowers were incredible and the scenery so diverse. A field of flowers at one turn and then boulders, cliffs, calm bays and crashing ocean waves.
Last Saturday I traveled to Stellenbosch at the urging of a friend as it is definitely a place not to miss if you visit Cape Town. I was also advised that I may have trouble communicating as Stellenbosch is also VERY Afrikaans. Well, they were right on both accounts. I've seen towns, but what could be so special? When I got there it's as if I had been transported back in time with all of the Dutch and Afrikaaner architecture. Not to be lost in the conversation, it is the home of Stellenbosch University. A fact I did not know is that Stellenbosch University is where the South African National Rugby Team, Springboks, was founded. The town was founded in 1679 by the Governor of the Cape Colony, Simon van der Stel, who named it after himself — Stellenbosch means "(van der) Stel's Bush". Humble guy. It is situated on the banks of the Eerste Rivier ("First River"), so named as it was the first new river he reached and followed when he went on an expedition over the Cape Flats to explore the territory towards what is now known as Stellenbosch. Yes, there were modern shops, galleries, restaurants, and cafe's, but all was in theme with the aged charm, of the town. It was a shame as most Galleries and shops were closed as I got there later in the afternoon after getting lost on the way. Not a surprise. There is wine everywhere. During 1690 some Huguenot refugees settled in Stellenbosch, grapes were planted in the fertile valleys around Stellenbosch and soon it became the centre of the South African wine industry. I don't know much at all about wine personally as I am a beer snob, but I have been told that the South African wines are among the best in the world. Unfortunately, my stay was cut short as it was raining, so my time there was very limited. Here are a few select images. I will definitely be traveling back to Stellenbosch in the near future on a nice day. Hopefully I can find a bar with good beer!
I met Tessa and Jeremy at Matheson Hammock Park for a portrait session of Tessa's Baby Belly. It is true what they say about a pregnant woman having a beautiful glow about them. Tessa is beautiful and just to keep you posted Aidan was born shortly after Christmas and is home with them. Jeremy and Tessa are a special couple and Jeremy was a good sport with all of my posing requests. Originally I posted and delivered these in color with a few Black and White images thrown in, in this post I wanted to emphasize and show the strength of B&W. If it was up to me the vast majority of my portraiture would be B&W because you are attempting to gain the emotion and character of the subject(s). It is my feeling that the color in the image is irrelevant in most portraiture. Of course there are always exceptions. Those exceptions in my opinion would be when the color is important to add to the image. Anyway here are six images I picked. Hope you enjoy them, and feel free to comment and/or critique.
https://twitter.com/BONNIEBEATS I was asked by New Times Miami to photograph the First Annual Miami Music Month Kickoff Event. The event was held at a space in Downtown Miami called Grand Central Lofts on N. Miami Ave. The evening started out pretty slow. I was asked me to be there at 9:30 pm. The place was empty until about 11:00 pm when the band Radioboxer got things moving. Radioboxer is a bilingual, indie-alternative rockpowerpop band from Miami, Florida. Started in 2008, their music is highly varied, mixing styles from punk and electronica with Latin rhythms and folk, with a hint of 60's and 70's music, altogether in their own genre. They are known for their dynamic shows, which include high-energy theatrics to accompany their unique style.Radioboxer has been voted the Reader's Choice "Best Band" in Miami in the newspaper The Miami New Times. The band was really good with an excellent stage presence and a fascinating show. I recommend them and plan on checking them out again. The event was great and a lot of fun to work, and the New Times Staff as always was a pleasure to work with. The image I selected to use for this post was an Environmental Portrait of DJ Bonnie Beats. I enjoy capturing the image of an individual performing something that may define them. I found Bonnie Beats to have an incredibly interesting look and asked her to pose for a few portraits. I hope you enjoy it. Bonnie Beats can be contacted on Soundcloud, Twitter, , and Facebook, or email, email@example.com Additionally, everyone I met was great and loved being photographed. Thank you all for the experience. Enjoy the images! Hi resolution images are available for purchase HERE.
On my last post I spoke to a lot of people that love to be photographed. I was able to connect with Jessicuh Art that wanted some images made in a couple of outfits including a new SupergirlCosplay outfit she had just purchased. For those of you who do not know what Cosplay is here is a brief definition. Cosplay short for "costume play", is a type of performance art in which participants do costumes and accessories to represent a specific character or idea. Cosplayers often interact to create a subculture centred on role play. A broader use of the term "cosplay" applies to any costumed role play in venues apart from the stage, regardless of the cultural context. Some cosplayers choose to have a cosplay photographer take high quality images of the them in their costumes posing as the character. This is most likely to take place in a setting relevant to the character's origin, such as churches, parks, forests, water features and abandoned/run-down sites. Such cosplayers are likely to exhibit their work online, on blogs or artist websites, such as deviantART. They may also choose to sell such images or print the images as postcards and give them as gifts. So as you can see this type of photography is both desired and appreciated. Jessicuh also has several tattoos and like Cosplayers, people that are heavily tattooed are also appreciative of images of the art on their body. We did the shoot in Wynwood using the walls of art as a background. At first I thought that they may be a little too distracting, but because of the Bokeh (blur effect that high end lenses create beyond the subject) it worked out. I did some extra work by adding texture, vignetting, and borders to create subtle mood and to better direct the viewer to the subject. What I am always most concerned with is the reaction the client will have toward the final images. I am happy to say that she was more than satisfied and we had a lot of fun.
I photographed the 2012 Art Wynwood VIP / Press Preview Night and After Party at Wynwood Walls for NewTimes Miami. Here are selected images from that event. The art was amazing. About thirty percent was photography. Of course I was very focused on the photography. Photographers, Henri Cartier-Bresson, Andy Warhol, and Douglas Kirkland were among the most notable ones featured.