August 31, 2004

and Valentina makes three

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Craig and Viv, still full bellied, Canon 300D

Our next door neighbors Craig and Vivienne (also sweet friends of ours) had a beautiful baby girl this week named Valentina. When I got home yesterday I laughed to find they had left a pink nylon bag hanging from the door filled with earplugs.

Posted on 05:39 PM | Comments (12)

August 30, 2004

Burning Man...

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Sasha, Viola, Andrea Photo by Julian

Feeling nostalgic that for the first time in 6 years, we won't be going to Burning Man. Many of our friends left today for the desert. It feels strange to be home and to know that my orange tutu and wings are in Black Rock City...

Posted on 05:45 PM | Comments (14)

August 29, 2004

Malcolm Gold

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Malcolm, Canon 300D

Our sweet roommate Malcolm is heading back to New York City today... He was here in San Francisco playing bass for Billy Joel and Twyla Tharp's musical Movin' Out. It was a treat to have him in our home all summer.

We will miss you M!

Posted on 11:40 AM | Comments (9)

August 26, 2004

gold flecks

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Mary, Canon 300D

The photo above is from an evening when I decided to take Danny Gregory to the most California style event I could think of- a chakra healing at Psychic Horizons.

We arrived and immediately looked at each other like, 'Oh, This is going to be good!' It was in an old Victorian house where there was a room full of folks waiting to be healed. While we waited our turn in the back garden, Danny drew this statue while I photographed her. She was a beauty.

We're not sure if we were healed or not. There were a lot of hand motions in the air and talk about grounding cords and the 7th level and cleanses with pink liquid and gold flecks. Very mysterious stuff. I kept waiting for the english translation to begin but it never did...

*
The timing of Danny's visit was interesting. He was doing research for his new book and asked me lots of questions about my creative life. If it's satisfying, what I love about it, why I do it, etc. When you have your own business you naturally go through cycles where you question everything, you wonder if it's all worth it, if you're really made for this, if it will ever get any easier. Sometimes you want to quit entirely.

It was fascinating to have someone come into my life and interview me during one of these cycles. They are questions I ask myself at various times, but saying them out loud gave them an entirely different voice. Sometimes it's hard to know what the truth is, that voice that says, "This isn't safe! Get out quick! It's all caving in behind you!" or the one that says, "It's all going to be okay. I have no idea how, but it always works out somehow right?"

Sometimes it's hard to know which self to present, which self to believe, which self to ignore and which self to embrace. Sometimes it's hard to have faith. Sometimes it's hard to trust and just keep going. And like our time at Psychic Horizons, sometimes it's hard to know whether you've been healed or not.


Posted on 11:03 PM | Comments (17)

August 23, 2004

new friends

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Emily Lyles, Canon 300D

I met the adorable, amazing Emily Lyles this weekend. While having iced tea and shortbread at my favorite cafe, I was reminded of the joys of having friends of all different ages. I have made some extraordinary friends who are older than me (perhaps being a little sister this was more natural?) but was so inspired by Emily (brilliant, creative, 18 year old). I don't think I've spoken to someone just out of high school since 1989 when I graduated myself! I loved hearing what she was thinking about and what life is like for her.

Today, I get the pleaure of meeting Danny Gregory for some drawing, dahlia viewing, picture taking and other shenanigans.

New friends abound..

Posted on 09:33 AM | Comments (8)

August 20, 2004

Photo Friday-Analog

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self, photo booth, Santa Cruz, CA

Photo Friday's theme this week is "Analog." {the challenge is that we are supposed to post photos taken with film}

*
And a story about process:

A friend of mine has a sister who is developmentally disabled and is a very talented artist. He loves photography and gifted her a disposable camera, very excited and curious about what she would capture.

A few weeks later, he returned home for a visit and asked her how she liked the camera. "I loved it!" she said enthusiastically.
"Did you shoot any photos?"
"Yep."
"Can I see them?"
"What?"
"Can I see the photos you took?"
"I don't have any."

“Didn't you shoot any photos on the camera I gave you?”
“Yep. It was so much fun! Then I threw the camera away.”

Posted on 08:27 AM | Comments (16)

August 18, 2004

broken things

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dusty peach dahlia, Canon 300D

I just re-read bits of one of my favorite books, Traveling Mercies by Anne Lamott. The first thing I opened to was this:

"Carolyn Myss, the medical intuitive who writes and lectures about why people don't heal, flew to Russia a few years ago to give some lectures. Everything that could go wrong did-flights were cancelled or overbooked, connections missed, her reserved room at the hotel given to someone else. She kept trying to be a good sport, but finally, two mornings later, on the train to her conference on healing, she began to whine at the man sitting beside her about how infuriating her journey had been thus far.

It turned out that this man worked for the Dalai Lama. And he said-gently-that they believe when a lot of things are going wrong all at once, it is to protect something big and lovely that is trying to get itself born-and that this something needs for you to be distracted so that it can be born as perfectly as possible."

Posted on 04:28 PM | Comments (20)

pokey blue

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pokey flower, Canon 300D

Thank you for the sweet comments on the site! I only wish all of you lived in SF so I could photograph you...

Is anyone still having trouble viewing the 'fashion' section in the portfolio? Some of you mentioned this so I changed the size of the window. Hopefully it works for everyone now.

Thank you again for all the support!

*and another musical gem to share called Teitur. {the amazing jb told me about him.}

Posted on 09:58 AM | Comments (7)

August 17, 2004

Superherophoto.com

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A new site is born!

A big thank you to Sasha, Caroline & Matthew Loewengart, and Matt Passmore for your great feedback and coding help along the way. You guys rock!

Check it out here

Posted on 08:16 AM | Comments (24)

August 16, 2004

banana splits

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bananas, Canon 300D

I was waiting for the bus yesterday and an old (possibly crazy) man turned to me and asked, "What's wrong with your arm? Where'd you get those rashes?"

I looked down at my left arm and replied that we had been having a mosquito problem in our house and the welts were all in various stages of the healing process.

He pressed on. "Why do you have all those mosquitoes in your house?"

"Well", I began, "it turns out there is a plant in our room with a plastic tray underneath it collecting water. It hadn't been changed in weeks and a little science project formed. A little pond you might say. It took us WEEKS to figure this out, but we did and now the mosquitoes are gone."

Man: "You should have a banana split."
Me: "What?"
Man: "You should treat yourself to a banana split for figuring that out."

pause.

Man: "We always get down on ourselves and remember all the stupid things we've done. Every once in a while we figure something out and do something brilliant but we don't usually remember it. If you have a banana split you won't forget."

Interesting theory...


Posted on 05:46 PM | Comments (18)

August 14, 2004

The Giggler

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Elizabeth and John, Canon EOS

My friends Elizabeth and John just got engaged recently. {Congratulations you two!} I had the pleasure of photographing them in all sorts of sweet romantic poses, but this one is our favorite in the end... the one where they are laughing with each other and being silly. Isn't that really the best part of being alive?

I know that before I found Matt I was always keeping copious lists of all of the qualities I wanted to find in a partner. Every time I was on a long bus ride or waiting at the doctor's office I would make a new one. "Makes me laugh til I pee my pants" seemed to make it on every list.

Well, I got my wish.

During the first week we were dating, I happened to have paint chips in my bag. We invented a game where we made up stories according to the names of each color. The rule was that you couldn't look at the names ahead of time, but had to slowly reveal the next color as you were spinning the tale... "This is a story about 'Cameron's eyes' and it's a very, very, strange story. He woke up one day to find that his eyes were 'blue rivers' and whoever he gazed at would get washed away in them..."

You get the picture.

Needless to say, we laughed so hard at each others' stories we could hardly get through a meal on our dates. This game was a big part of our initial connection since the traditional getting to know each other/dating stuff made us nervous and feel awkward. The paint chip game gave us access to each other in a strangely intimate way. In honor of this, our friend Sasha designed our wedding invitations to look like paint chips.

Making each other laugh is still the biggest part of our relationship. Even at our hardest moments, we have found humor. And somehow there is a refuge in this.

Years before Matt and I started to date, I started a photobooth project on the web. I asked people to take photobooth pics and answer a series of questions. One of the questions was, "If you were a superhero, what would your power be?"

Matt responded with, "I would be The Giggler, and you would giggle."

Little did I know he would be my Giggler forevermore.

Posted on 08:41 AM | Comments (14)

August 13, 2004

Photo Friday - Tranquility

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Tecolote Beach, Yashica T-4

Photo Friday's theme this week is "Tranquility."

Posted on 09:01 AM | Comments (8)

August 11, 2004

awaken

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hot pink petals, Canon 300D

Busy building my photography portfolio site. Coming soon!


"Life and death are of supreme importance.
Time swiftly passes by and opportunity is lost.
Each of us should strive to awaken.
Awaken. Take heed, do not squander your life."
-Evening chant

Posted on 09:57 AM | Comments (14)

August 10, 2004

dahlia creatures

black_red_dahlia.jpgdahlia, Canon 300D

It's dahlia season again at Golden Gate Park. If you are anywhere near San Francisco, you must see them! Calling them flowers seems like an inadequate description. They are more like brilliantly painted creatures, with their many petaled heads like crazy mathematicians. You must see them for yourself.

And if you have always wished you could wear flowers on your fingers, now you can! The brilliant Angela Gwinner and her company Omondieu have made it possible.

Posted on 11:25 AM | Comments (6)

August 09, 2004

The Weepies

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Steve, Deb, Malcolm, Canon 300D

Imagine your favorite singer songwriter. Imagine listening to them over and over again on your CD player. Imagine singing along to them {inexpertly} and wishing that for just one day you could have that voice. Imagine that the next best thing to being them, would be to have them in your home singing to you and all of your friends. And wouldn't it be great to have them for your husband's birthday celebration? Imagine that...

Well folks, that happened to me last night. The Weepies played in my living room.

The Weepies are Deb Talan & Steve Tannen and if you give a little listen I think you will crush out on them as hard as I did. {Pictured above, you will see our amazing roommate and old friend of the Weepies, Malcolm Gold who accompanied them on bass.}

Happy Birthday Matt! and thank you Steve, Deb and Malcolm. Life doesn't get much better than this...

P.S. We are already looking forward to continuing the house concert tradition by having our dear friend Martine Locke perform this fall. She is another artist that will blow you away with her talent. {if you are in the Bay Area and would like to be invited to this show, let me know!}

Posted on 09:37 AM | Comments (18)

August 08, 2004

pincushion flower

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Flower experiments.

Posted on 10:23 AM | Comments (5)

August 06, 2004

Photo Friday-Perfect

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Lauryn, Canon EOS

Photo Friday's theme this week is "Perfect."

On the tail of our discussion about the judging mind, it amazes me that I chose this photo for the theme of "perfect." When did we stop believing we are perfect?

Posted on 09:20 AM | Comments (10)

August 05, 2004

red roses

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red roses, Canon 300D

"May your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, dangerous, leading to the most amazing view. May your mountains rise into and above the clouds."
-Edward Abbey

At the dharma talk I attended the other night, the teacher brought up the topic of the "judging mind." We all immediately groaned and smiled in recognition. He said something that surprised me though: "Whenever you place yourself above, below, or equal to someone else, that is the judging mind at work."

I had only thought of judging as putting someone else down, but we are constantly {without realizing it} placing ourselves below others as well. The point of all of this is that none of it is true! and we can't help but do it anyway. We judge. We are judgers. We are human. That's what we do. All we can do is begin to notice it. We can begin to separate ourselves from that which is judging and say, "Oh, there I go again doing that judging thing I do."

The problem is when we buy into it and believe our own insanity. You are never above, below or even equal to anyone else. You just made that up {with likely very questionable criteria} You just are. And the rest is an illusion.

I have been letting this one sink in all week...

Posted on 09:31 AM | Comments (15)

August 03, 2004

flower girls

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flower girls, Canon 300D

"It is true, we don't know what is happening in the deepest sense. And if we can stay with that not knowing, and trust it, and enjoy it, we will be able to experience our life in some fundamentally different way. That's our miraculous power."
-Katherine Thanas

Posted on 05:22 PM | Comments (11)

green cake

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green wedding cake, Canon 300D

Thank you to everyone who voted for my site for Photo Friday's Challenge on the Mother theme. I am so delighted to have won my first noteworthy photo!

Some of you asked what I learned at my first wedding shoot. So much I don't know where to begin!

First, I have a great respect for wedding photographers. I think it is the single most challenging scenario for anyone to shoot. You have absolutely no control whatsoever! You are shooting documentary style photos, portraiture and still lifes all with the looming cloud of "This is the most important day of my life so don't f*ck it up" hanging over your head.

There are hundreds of people to capture who are all doing different things, and if you blink too long you might miss the kiss or the toss, or the funny thing that little cousin Billy did. If you have to go to the bathroom you might miss the best man's speech or the cutting of the cake, and your roll of film will inevitably run out during that really cool moment when the groomsmen start doing capoeira flips and no handed cartwheels on the dance floor. (This actually happened to me the other night, I swear)

You have also been shooting for God-only-knows-how-many-hours and you are struggling to be inspired by the flash photography and the gazillionth toast.

All that said, you are at a wedding and what could be better? Witnessing that kind of love, ritual and celebration is such a gift and privilege. There were many moments when I would forget to shoot because I was so moved and spellbound by the look in the bride and groom's eyes.

My tips? What I learned?

Shooting wedddings isn't easy. {I was happily the second shooter at the wedding over the weekend} I look forward to doing more because I am convinced it is the most excellent training any photographer can have. I was discussing this with two friends of mine who are very successful and accomplished professionals. They challenged themselves to shoot weddings years ago simply for the training. One continued to do it and the other didn't, but both feel like the experience helped them tremendously in their career.

I say, start shooting at weddings you attend as a guest. Get some practice when there is no pressure and then start assisting a professional. You might do this for years before you take on clients of your own. No matter if you ever do it professionally, you will grow and learn as a photographer. You will also get to eat lots of green cake and occasionally ride a scary rollercoaster afterwards.

Posted on 08:38 AM | Comments (11)

August 01, 2004

giant dipper

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the beach at the Boardwalk, Canon 300D

I shot my first wedding this weekend with my friend Kim. After almost 10 hours of shooting we practically ran to the Giant Dipper roller coaster and let out primal screams for several minutes of harrowing dips and turns. I was laughing so hard when we got off the ride I thought I was going to throw up.

Posted on 08:50 PM | Comments (7)