Posts Tagged ‘school




Brandcenter: Day One


Down, Down, Down.


Everywhere we go, we manage to find a playground for my daughter to blow off some steam. This one is at my old elementary school, in Virginia Beach. Of course, this monster slide wasn’t part of the equipment when I was a kid. No, in fact, the entire place was a lot more lawsuit friendly. I seem to vaguely even remember a student breaking his arm on one of the jungle-gym pieces during recess one day.

It’s interesting what playgrounds look like these days. I think I’m going to pay closer attention to them since I seem to photograph them so often.


The Patrick Henry Charter School.

There’s an old Richmond Public School near my house that the city decided to close a couple of years back. It’s a beautiful old building and I’ve used it as a backdrop for shoots before, like this one and this one. So when the people who are spearheading the effort to make the charter school a reality called and asked if I had time to help, I was happy to oblige.

Patrick Henry School-2906.jpg

They had a cleanup day a couple of weeks ago and invited me to come. I didn’t have to dig anything up or move any dirt. My job was just to photograph stuff so that they had images for their newsletters and website.

Patrick Henry School-2940.jpg

They had a set timeframe and ended up with a whole passel of volunteers to help brush the dust off a facility that the city doesn’t use anymore. I’m really excited to see how their curriculum shapes up and thrilled to see new life in the building.

Patrick Henry School-3211.jpg


No, YOU’RE The Man!

Outta Here-9220.jpg

Shot the 8th grade graduation for my old school the other day. It’s fun to see the kids I’ve known since they were 10 just before they head off to high school.

These two were outtakes. One supremely cool fella up top and the disorganization that is a bunch of 8th grade boys on the bottom. This was the beginning of a cat-herding that would end up as the class portrait. Go figure.

Outta Here-9244.jpg


Working the Land(scape).

I’ve been looking at a lot of work by other people and, as I’ve mentioned here before, I’m not really all that thrilled with my landscape photography. Beyond that, I have this Holga camera that seems underutilized. I was truly inspired by this fellow to just kinda shoot stuff with the camera and see where it took me.

With all that in mind, I went traipsing around the city back to some of the places that I thought, “That’d make a great photograph.” as I’d passed them before and grabbed a few.

I scanned them and then toned them the way I might’ve if I’d been printing them and I kinda like what I got, although I’d probably print a film border and a bit of a vignette. Whatever the case, here are 4:





It’s interesting how the lens bends things in its sight. It’s an aberration I wasn’t expecting but I’m really growing to love when I see straight lines captured.


Facebook, Text Messages, & Surfing the Web.

Passing Notes

The semester’s in full swing and things are largely going well. These students seem to be much more engaged than ones I’ve taught in years past. I like it. I’m having a good time. I’m hoping they are, too.

What’s troubling is that many of them have taken to bringing their laptops to class. And their cell phones. Sure, the photo up there is of a note being passed (and it’s not even lit all that well), but what it makes me question is whether the paradigm has shifted. Let me explain.

When I was a student, lo those many moons ago, we passed notes like those to get our ideas to one another, especially if those ideas weren’t related to class. Now, they send text messages. They send emails. They post on facebook. Heck, I’ve even seen a couple manage to post to their blogs (which are required for my class) while they’re in the midst of other classes. Technology has changed the rules. The short version of it (to my mind, at least) is that they can’t be paying attention to what’s going on in class with all of these distractions. It also strikes me as rude.

But the impasse that I’ve created in my mind comes directly from the very same tech that we laud. On the one hand, have they evolved to the point where they can do both things at once? Are they just us, 2.0? If this is so, then is my enforcement of “the old guard” — y’know, things like “Take off your hat inside.” or “Don’t talk when I’m talking.” or “Set your mobile phone to silent before you enter class.” — a waste of time and the product of backward thinking? I mean, have I become just a stump in the road of progress? On the other hand (and this is where some of my younger colleagues land), perhaps it’s my job to help get them ready for a larger world. One that, at least at present, doesn’t accept that a text message where the word “too” becomes the number “2” is acceptable. It’s my job to show them that there’s more going on than who’s having a party tonight and that examining their surroundings isn’t an exercise in futility.

In the end, the choice is mine, I suppose. Will I continue to allow them to run roughshod over the conventions to which I’ve adhered for such a long time, or will I, in the vernacular, put the “smack down” and make them toe my line? I’m leaning toward the latter. And I’m thinking that next week, the proverbial other shoe drops.

Hold on to your hats, kids.

N.B. The image above was shot not for this rant, but as part of a stock shoot I’d put together a couple of years ago. Alas, it was hard to make the image look like a class with only two young ladies. This idea is worth shooting again, but this image falls a little short of my expectations. *shrug*


Missing the Mark.

I shot some nudes some weeks ago that just didn’t turn out the way that I wanted them to.
Of the bunch, this was the closest to what I was hoping for. I only post it because it reminds me of a conversation I had with the model and a buddy from the photo grad program.

He was complaining that she (the model’s in the program too) came to critiques with images that were accompanied by lengthy descriptions of what the images were supposed to be. The only hitch was that the images she brought weren’t (in his estimation) the same. “You bring images and describe what you wanted, but the two don’t match,” he said.

That’s completely where I am on this. The idea behind this was to illustrate the nightmare of being at school without clothes. It was pretty straightforward. Somehow though, I completely miss the mark.


It seems to me that photographers who choose to shoot nudes should be able to bring something new and interesting to the genre. I’m not sure I’m one of them. In fact, I’d say I wasn’t. As such, my forays will be more measured in the future.


Live and learn, I suppose.


Error: Twitter did not respond. Please wait a few minutes and refresh this page.

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 12 other followers

July 2018
« Sep    
stats for wordpress