Thursday, October 28, 2010

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Remember This When You Pull That Lever Next Tuesday

Take A Moment, Write A Few Letters, Sign The Petition

Combating Online Infringement and Counterfeits Act

Dear Copyright Advocate,
This letter is about a bill that has been introduced in the Senate that will combat online infringement of copyrighted works. It’s called the “Combating Online Infringement and Counterfeits Act” or “COICA”. ASMP encourages you to sign a petition in favor of the bill.
Though some photographers have already done this, our efforts have not been enough.
The opponents of this bill have been active in mobilizing the masses to speak out against it. The result of their efforts is that it seems like the public is against this bill. Yet, we all hear everyday about how websites are illegally posting your creative works for others to take and how this affects your livelihood.
This bill would benefit all artists and creators! TAKE ACTION TODAY! Stand up for your rights!


  1. Speak up on blogs and listservs. Artists who speak out in favor of the bill on a website are often verbally attacked. Musicians, photographers and other artists need your support on this effort. Post blogs and comments on your own websites or on websites where you see these attacks.
  2. Contact your Senator and House Representative. Tell your congressional representatives to vote YES to the bill. Tell them your story and how piracy and infringement affect you.
    To find and email your Senator, go here.
    To find and email your House Representative, go here.
  3. Tweet this: Stop online piracy of art, music, movies, books, all creative works. Vote yes to Combating Online Infringement and Counterfeits Act #COICA
  4. Facebook this: The U.S. Congress is debating a bill that could help millions of artists around the world. If passed, the bill would allow the government to target and shut down “internet sites dedicated to infringing activities” which are “primarily designed” to access unauthorized copyrighted material. Tell your representatives to vote YES to the Combating Online Infringement and Counterfeits Act (COICA).


  1. Check out this short video by independent filmmaker Ellen Seidler as she talks about how websites that are illegally hosting her movie are profiting. Yet, she is losing money. This bill will help shut down websites like these.
  2. The bill will not target minor violations of copyright. It will target “internet sites dedicated to infringing activities” that are “primarily designed” to offer or provide access to copyrighted material “without the authorization of the copyright owner.”
  3. The Attorney General will be able to request a court order to suspend the domain names of U.S.-based infringing websites. For non-U.S.-based websites, the Attorney General will be able to request a court order to require the ISPs to block the website. Credit card companies and networks providing ads to these sites will also suspend all activity with the infringing sites.
  4. A list of all the domain names that are found to be infringing copyright protected content will be posted on a “publicly available Internet site, together with other relevant information, in order to inform the public.”
Last February we made you aware of Pilfered Magazine, an online magazine that freely took images from photographers without their permission and didn’t credit or compensate the photographers. Because of your emails, Tweets, and postings on blogs and Facebook, the magazine was shut down in a weekend and has never reopened.
It is important that we take collective action on this bill too. Pilfered is not the only website that hosts and offers infringing material. This bill will help remove other websites like Pilfered from the internet.
Via Rob @ APE

Art Market Rules

Earlier this week, The Financial Times published a fascinating piece on Annie Leibovitz, her ongoing financial challenges and the international market for fine-art photography in general.
As one who is just now wading into the shallow end of the fine art-photography market, I found the piece to be educational, informative and very enlightening. The gist of the article focused on the disparity in value at auction of Leibovitz's amassed body of work - work considered to be far more commercial than the images of such fine-art photography notables & top auction earners Cindy Sherman, Andreas Gurskey, Herb Ritts, Bettina Rheims ( I Yher work!), Irving Penn and others. Sherman's work, for example, has fetched lofty prices at auction, as much & more than $2 Million while Annie's best price at auction, to date, as been £31,200 but more often is the case, according the the FT article, fetching prices this year in the single-figure thousands of dollars and some to have sold as low as several hundred.

The point taken from the story is that Annie, as she readily admits, was focused on her career and a well-know & arguably the best editorial & celebrity portrait photographer of her time. In the process, she ignored the fine-art market, auction houses & dealers... that is, until her free-spending ways caught up with her.

The problem is that, as Jeffrey Boloten, a managing director of the ArtInsight consultancy in London, puts it: “You do have to play by the art market rules.” That means working closely with auction houses and galleries and doing what they tell you, from making small limited editions of your prints to signing and marketing them adeptly.

Leibovitz has failed this test, at least until she got into her current straits, and her credibility among the movers, shakers and brokers of the art world is low. “She had very little interest in the art world for most of her career,” says Edwynn Houk, a gallery owner in New York who used to represent her. “She suffered from not caring about it, not paying enough attention.” 

 Read more here:

(Thanks to Rob @ APE for the find)

Friday, October 22, 2010

Keywording... time consuming, tediously mind-numbing and oh so essential.

150 images prepped, sized, keyworded and uploaded to new stock agency this week. Lifestyle, scenic, food & more.

Finding things long forgotten. Cool... backgrounds, surfaces (see above) and more.

Decent print sale made last week at the resort artists' program, ships early next week. Printing more. Must be matted. Back for more on monday.

Agency proposal request, one of the BIG TWO & direct result of the H-lulu portfolio trip.

Retail Product shoot booked for 11/2.

Preproduction meetings set to begin in the next week or so for new T-Downs CD packaging. Gotta be better than last one. Big challenge.

Reconnected with old mate from high school. Long time, great guy!

Reconnected with old mate who disappeared to China & Asia. Long time, another great guy.

Stock Images available for direct licensing too. Contact me here:

Surrounded by amateurs in disguise. Halloween costume suggestion #1: Be a Professional. No one will recognize you. Then try it the other 364 days. 

Publicist friend insists this is a backwater. She's never wrong.

Mainland leaves are turning orange, yellow, red. Chill in the air. Not here. Leaves stay green. It's hot.

Weekend got there fast.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010


A couple of months ago, I wrote about my day spent bouncing off the reefs offshore in Waikiki. Now that the work is published, it is possible to reveal the mission and showcase the image selected by the assigning photo-editor.

Via Magazine, published in Northern California, Utah & elsewhere, sent me to Oahu to capture the action at the world renown surf school run by former world touring pro surfer Hans Hedeman. Hans was just reaching his prime back in the days when I was surfing on the East Coast prior to relocating to the islands and getting to meet him during the shoot day was an unexpected  bonus thrill. 

The goal of the shoot was to capture a dramatic image illustrating the surf lifestyle in a coastal city/urban environment, in this case - Honolulu.

A great day was enjoyed in the warm, clear waters of Waikiki... almost 8 hours in the brine as I worked the various surf lesson groups throughout the day. The image above was selected for publication.

View From Home - Scenes From The Road To You

Untitled ©2010
On Reflection Of The Distant Reflection ©2010

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

The View From Home- Home Office

It is here, at this table, where I spend early mornings and evenings - especially during these warm days & nights of autumn. When the sun is not too bright to work on the laptop, I spend my time here responding to emails, corresponding with clients & companions, surrounded by lemon & lime trees full of ripening fruit, canopied by a shapely Jatropha covered in tiny red blossoms and buzzing with honeybees in the mornings, feral free-range chickens running by with their broods and a great view of Haleakala, world's largest dormant volcano. The avocado tree has given up for the season after producing a record crop of pear-shaped & buttery orbs... red-torch ginger & birds of paradise bloom abundantly, star fruit & naval orange trees are straining from the load. Horses & cattle forage in the adjacent pastures as I type, read and begin the business of the new day.

The winter wet season will hopefully soon be upon us and I will soon enough be forced to retreat indoors for my morning repast(s). Until then, I will enjoy these warm mornings & nights of autumn.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

October Already?

Aloha Tower Waterfront, Downtown Honolulu

Returning late friday evening from what felt like a successful three days of making the rounds to all the Oahu agencies & publications, showing the portfolio and putting in long overdue and essential face-time. Many thanks to all of those that entertained me in their well appointed, comfortable and well air-conditioned conference rooms. There were many that I had the opportunity to meet with that previously I knew only from telephone conversations & email and many new names & faces that graciously took time to review the work and offer positive feedback.

Oahu is a very different beast from the laid-back Maui lifestyle - the downtown districts filled with serious looking, well dressed business folks running to & fro, working their smart phones & crackberries, focused & for the most part, unsmiling. And then there's the traffic and utter lack of affordable, cheap parking anywhere in the downtown district... the closer you get to the Chinatown end of things, the more expensive the parking, it seemed. The noise of traffic, sirens, car horns (something relatively unheard of back here on the Valley Isle), building air-con units, all echoing & amplified within the man-made canyons of concrete & glass always leaves me a bit unsettled, me having abandoned urban dwelling nearly 30 years previously.

Still, I found the intense activity to be inspiring... and there's is some wonderful architecture in the downtown area... old brick low-rise office buildings with beautiful polished wood paneling, trim, marble staircases and glorious old brass elevators to enormous monuments of human engineering that reach skyward. 

Most of my activity was centered around a 4 block corridor in the Bishop Street-Chinatown area... the home of almost all the big ad agencies & public relations/marketing firms. There were also appointments at resort HQ's in Waikiki, publications in Kaimuki & Manoa and a couple of funky design shops located in the Kakaako industrial section of town. Evenings were spent eating, conversing and crashing at the home of an old friend living in the shadow of Diamond Head Crater in Kaimuki, just above Kapiolani Park, just a stones thow and another world away from the frenzied activity of Waikiki.

One of the publications visited during the stay sent me a text on friday morning asking if I was still in town and could I shoot an assignment for them before heading to the airport on friday evening? You betcha!

The afternoons and evenings during my stay saw heavy downpours, even some thunder, which only added to the sweltering humidity common in the islands this time of year. From the heat & humid conditions of the street into frigid offices and back into the steam repeatedly over the course of three days, I returned to Maui with a vicious head cold. As soon as I returned home friday night, I climbed into bed and stayed there until mid-day on Saturday. 

When I woke, I remotely checked messages on the studio answering service, only to find a call from Erin of The Throwdowns. The band had rented the Maui Arts & Cultural Center's Castle Theater for three days to record drum-tracks for the new recording... looking for that "big-room" sound. I think they got it. Grabbing cameras, I jumped in the car, sped down the mountain and arrived at the stage just before the band was wrapping things up and just in time to document that portion of the recording process.

The Throwdowns @ MACC's Castle Theater

There was also a fresh email in my inbox from one of the big agencies requesting stock images seen in my portfolio to be used for an advertising campaign, a call from the Oahu Architect responsible for actor Richard Chamberlain's beautiful Maui beachfront home, assigning a second architectural shoot of the property. There were also a few prints to be made and framed work to be packed-up both at home & in the studio to begin my weekly gallery sittings at the resort artists-in-residence program which began this monday past.

Sunday was spent filling the stock request... uploading images to the agency .ftp site & preparing the gallery work. Monday was spent sitting the resort gallery, sending follow-up thank-you emails to all those that took the time to see me in Honolulu & updating the client data-base with the names & contact info for all those new creatives that I was able to meet.

A couple of corporate head-shots fill this afternoon's calendar and the rest of the week will be spent preparing images for my new stock agency, Photo Resource Hawaii.

After months of far too much free-time & thumb-twiddling, the month of October has begun with a bang!