Wednesday, January 16, 2013

So Far, So Good....

Finished up the past year with a bang. Many assignments flooding in over the months of November & December, several involving off-island travel, added substantially to the coffers as we exited 2012. This trend has continued into the first two weeks of 2013 and shows no signs of abating at the moment. A welcome trend to be sure and a small indication that either I & my work remain relevant or that the economy is finally showing signs of life or both. I am definitely hoping for the "both"!

Work has begun culling images and beginning the initial layout of galleys for my first foray into the world of self-publishing. The book... an exploration into the architecture, spiritual practices & rituals of the Balinese Culture may end up containing over 150 photographs... digital, analog, color & B&W... as well as excerpts from travel diaries and armchair-anthropological essays gathered from my many trips to the island over the years. The process will be long & arduous, requiring the calling in of a favor or two from friends in the graphic design industry (you have now officially been warned). 

Feeling safe enough that potential art buyers both old & new had returned to their desks after the holidays and were ready to begin focusing on new projects for the year, the first email campaign was prepared and sent out to over 500 lucky recipients early last week. Receiving positive initial feedback from multiple recipients, it was time to grab the "book", board a plane and head for the bright lights & big city of H'lulu to put in some much needed face-time with a handful of clients, flogging the new work and all but begging for more.

January 2013 Email Promo

First stop was the downtown district of Bishop Street-Fort St. Mall, home to two of the state's largest Ad Agencies. As the first meeting was to be over lunch and H'lulu's Chinatown is only a couple of blocks stroll away, it was mutually decided that a tiny hole-in-the-wall Dim-Sum joint would serve our meeting & eating purposes nicely. Maui is so very lacking in any decent chinese fare, so I could not have been happier with the choice.

No Valet Parking

Steaming Baskets of Delicacies Tempt Sidewalk Pedestrians

Lunch With W

After lunch, walking W back to her office, I marveled at the storefront windows packed with dubious looking & unidentifiable produce packed tightly in giant glass jars of viscous liquid..

Several productive meetings later, I was finished for the day. Stopped again in Chinatown for an evening bite and back to my marina-side hotel to sleep and gear up for the next day's drive around the back side of Oahu to the North Shore surfing meccas of Pipeline & Waimea, stopping from time to time to explore unknown beaches and shoot scenic stock. The weather was magnificent and I was lucky enough to have worked out a deal on a cheap rental Mustang convertible for the long day of driving. Then it was back to the airport just in time for sunset and a 7:30 flight back home.


Immediately upon my return, renown musical duo HAPA turned up at the studio for a new round of promotional photography for upcoming local dates & international tours. As I shot, my neighbors & I were treated to a free unplugged concert courtesy of Barry & Ron. Lovely voices! A couple of hours & several hundred images later, we wrapped up the studio shoot, packed up the instruments and the boys headed to their evening supper-club gig down on the south shore.

Chester Offers Final Art Direction

Yesterday, 1/2 of HAPA returned to the studio, this time with elegant hula dancer Radasha Ho'ohuli in tow. Again, Barry picked up the guitar and serenaded us as Rashada danced & swayed in time, conjuring up long ago images of classic hula beauties of a bygone era.

This morning it was up bright & early, into the shower... grab a fast cup of java and off to Wailea beach to capture editorial portraits for Texas-based Virtuoso travel magazine. Friday, it's more of the same for a magazine called T+D.

All in all, the year is shaping up nicely if the past two weeks are any indication of what might be in store. Lots of work and even better, a whole host of clients that are paying on time. May the trend continue...

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