Thursday, September 27, 2012

Health Care Campaign Is Ongoing

Despite the challenges of scheduling multiple physicians, nurses & hospital staff to gather for photography sessions (hey, they have lives to save after all...), the community relations campaign for the newly revitalized Maui Memorial Medical Center continues. 

The latest work to see the light of day below. Superior and heroic wrangling efforts by Karey Kapoi Oura. Clean, communicative design by Saedesign.

Very grateful to have had a hand in these. 

More to come...

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Hawaii Architectural Photographer

Here is just a handful of the architectural & interior design projects we have had the honor of producing during the past twelve months. Clients trusting us with their imaging needs include Prince Resorts Hawaii, Fairmont Hotels & Resorts, Wyndham Resorts, Maui Architectural Group, Island Design Center, Maui No Ka Oi Magazine & Modern Luxury Hawaii Magazine to name just a few.

In addition to architectural assignments, specialties also include food & lifestyle portraying your properties & products always at their best.

See more at our online portfolio:

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Autumnal Equinox

The first day of autumn arrived and nearly passed me by. Exhausted from a big night on the town, joining friends at Lahaina's newest eatery & entertainment venue for dinner and a show kept me out until well past the witching hour. Already tired from an early morning zipline shoot, several cups of strong java were required to make the drive to the west side. Being a consistently early riser, these rare (for me) late night outings take their toll.

Joined for the show by mad Scotsman and bagpiper, Hamish, fully dressed in formal piping gear complete with kilt & "codpiece" made of newly born Badger pelts.

I did manage to crawl out of bed to retrieve the latest craigslist score... a nearly new Weber kettle BBQ grill, purchased for the measly sum of $5. The deal was it had to be picked up before 9:30am (along with the handing over of a crisp fiver) to consumate the transaction. With that in mind, Chester & I piled into the red pick-up, retrieved our treasure, headed to Pukalani to stock up on grilling provisions and then on to a walk at the dog park as is our morning custom.

Limping home after the pup walk and since it was raining anyway, a good sunday nap was in order in celebration the arrival of autumn. (That's my excuse & I'm sticking to it....)

Rumors of the impending arrival of the seasons's first big winter swell had the island buzzing yesterday. As promised, consistent yet sloppy 8-12 ft. surf began pounding the island's north shore just about the time I was pulling the covers up to my chin early this morning.

After naptime, headed down to Hookipa Beach Park to check out the swell, running into occasional dog-walking companion and mad videographer Santi & his son Tosh, also down to check out the surf action. Solid 8-footers were rolling into the lanes with good consistency but sloppy form. Only a couple of kite surfers were out, along with a solitary long-boarder trying to make his way through the inside slop and contenting himself with just playing around well out of reach of the thundering waves hitting the outside reefs.

Welcome to the arrival of the winter water-sport season! It's been a long, dry summer.

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Bad Blogger!

Despite all good intentions to add regular update posts to this thing, the past two weeks have gotten away from me as we finished up Phase II of construction. Most of the painting now complete & trim nailed into place, there is only some minor touch-up work and a final permit inspection standing in the way of commencing the demolition of a small perimeter building and start of Phase III. Once completed, this will provide my better half with a proper, detached office space... something she keenly wishes to occupy before the holiday season is upon us. 

So, updates may continue in spotty fashion for a bit longer yet as I take up hammer, saw & paint brushes over the next few weeks, all while dashing to & fro between assignments, studio and construction site. 

The end is near... there is light down the tunnel and all has, so far, exceeded expectations. Now, onto the meat...

Got a call yesterday from a Seattle based fashion photographer inquiring about the availability of seasoned and competent photographic assistants here on the island. Oddly enough, I find myself conducting a similar search. After wading through a multitude of responses to my search, nearly all of them falling short of the mark, interviews were granted to two candidates with some potential to make the cut. But that is another story for another time...

Said photographer just happened to be in the neighborhood when she called. After a brief and hopefully illuminating phone chat, arrangements were made that she drop round the studio for coffee and further dialog. A short time later, Rachel Olsson pulled into the driveway on a shiny new, italian-designed crotch-rocket, grabbed her backpack, peeled out of her leathers and we sat down to swap lies and war stories about the declining state of the industry. Charming, funny, engaging and above all, talented, I liked her immediately and loose plans were made to collaborate on something and to keep in touch.

I enjoyed the rare opportunity to engage with a colleague well-versed in the commercial/editorial realm and look forward to future opportunities to engage.

And, while we are speaking of chatting about photography... another rare opportunity presents itself on the evening of September 27th when David Ulrich - fine-art photographer, author, former island resident and current Program Coordinator of the Pacific New Media Center at University of Hawaii, Manoa will present a free lecture at Hui Noeau Visual Arts Center in Makawao. David has been an old friend, teacher & active photographer, with over 75 exhibitions under his belt & a book titled THE WIDENING STREAM: THE SEVEN STAGES OF CREATIVITY published several years ago.   

The free lecture begins at 5:30pm in the Hui's Media Lab. Be sure to mark your calendars.

Following the lecture, on Friday, September 28th, David & his partner will be conducting a workshop titled:

Creativity & Yoga: Exploring the Creative Process

The workshop runs from 10am-4pm. You can find more details HERE.

"Shelby Falls MA"  ©1975 David Ulrich

Friday, September 7, 2012

Friday's Outlook: Rain

Rain indeed. Deluge, downpour, afternoon drenching. 

Finished painting & porching just before the opening of the heavens. Pleasant dampness and cool air creeps thru newly installed screens. Much welcome relief to still, hot, humidity of the earlier part of the day. 

RG dropped 'round this morning to discuss visual elements to grace the cover of a forthcoming musical project. A change in album title comes about after some photo idea riffing.

Once the rains set in, nothing left to do but retreat inside to continue the ongoing emptying of boxes and thrusts at a sensible
organization scheme. 

Intermittent emailing of stock licensing negotiations and eventual agreement by all parties enriched the coffers significantly or at least enough to pay off Backhoe Gary who, amidst the torrential downpour, just dropped off his Bobcat to be put into use early tomorrow morning resetting massive walkway stones. 

500 promo SPAM sent out early yesterday yielded a couple of good response inquiries today. 

And now the day has ended. Tomorrow brings new adventures...

Monday, September 3, 2012

Happy Labor Day

One for all the great men & women that DID build it..

Saturday, September 1, 2012

Move Completed, New Month-Era Begun

Yesterday - finished up the final clean-out of former studio of the past 19 years, dropping off keys & hauling the final load of accumulated life's work to the new image factory just before sundown. 'Twas a monumental task of going thru boxes & boxes of old chromes, transparencies, equipment and equipment bits- amassed and stored in the dark recesses of the old studio loft. Things that had piled up... kept because someday I just might need this. So far, someday hasn't turned up and I now hold no illusions that it will, so off to the dump with much of it. We are scaled down now... mean & lean. 

Still unable to part with the two Sinar 4x5 cameras, the two Hassies and fortunately, there is a huge box of film left. 120 Chrome, B&W, several boxes of Fujichrome & TriX 4x5 sheets, 35mm. chrome, B&W, Infrared, several boxes of Polaroid 59, a few coveted sheets of 55, lots of medium format Polaroid 669. These WILL be put to use & soon as the missus says there's no room in the fridge to store them. 

The previous week or two has been filled with tasks of organization of the old space, cleaning and repainting the former darkroom and all the little details required before the handing over of the keys....

And now it is done.

There has also been a flurry of assignment work to attend to... 

A trip to the Hospital & OR to capture promotional images for local crack cardiovascular surgical team really highlighted the collaborative nature of portrait sessions of any sort. When surgeons usurped their PR handler, suggesting that we delay the group shots until a real OR was available a couple of hours later, I believed (and rightly so as things turned out) that if this team felt they were involved in the decision making in regards to their photographs, things could only work out for the best because they would really be on-board with getting good images. Two hours later, I found myself "suiting-up" in blue scrubs outside the Heart, Brain & Vascular Center wing only to find that lighting gear had to be removed from cases, cleaned and prepped before entre' into the surgical arena was allowed. This complicated things just a bit as we were very limited in time for this shot. The prepping of the gear would be time consuming. 

And this is were the use of digital photo technology far exceeds working with film... 

Once I was clothed in scrubs, I entered the OR to scout for exactly what I would need in terms of lighting. In the end, I opted to wing it, dispense with lights altogether. Cranking up the camera's ISO to almost max, aiming the overhead operating lights so that they bounced off a white sheeted gurney and placing subjects around said gurney yielded excellent results and a really beautiful, wrap-around light. Had I been shooting film, such a shot would have been nearly impossible with mixed lighting of florescent & incandescent requiring complex & multiple filtration and long-long exposures where subjects were sure to blur.

There were also meetings with the powers-that-be controlling sugar production in the state. I have been negotiating with them for several months now to gain access to pre-dawn flaming fields of sugar cane, personnel & access to photograph inside the mill... access that is, I'm told, routinely denied. Final word came down last week. Access & full cooperation granted.

The there was a full day of food, interior and lifestyle images for the north shore's preeminent tiki-themed eatery and a trip to Superstar Chef Allan Wong's newest island venue for an editorial shoot for Northern California's Via Magazine. 

Odd for me, there was even a wedding thrown into the recent assignment mix with a lovely couple, husband-to-be a talented graphic designer, referred to me by another colleague. I was hesitant, though the income produced would certainly aid in defraying the ongoing & mounting studio construction costs. Reluctantly, I accepted due to their insistence that they in no way wanted anything looking like anything they had seen on the websites of our many island wedding photographers... which is a good thing due to my cluelessness about how to even approach shooting a wedding.

All went well in the end with the happy couple turning up at the new studio a few days later, bearing bottles of lovely wine to toast, view & approve the results from their happy day.

Wyndham Resorts empire continues to expand throughout the islands. Last year they kept us busy traveling around the state and it suddenly appears that they will do the same this year with 8 new properties on four island's now waiting for photography. 

And there's more zip-lining to shoot in coming weeks with another course to cover for previous clients along with a new operator's course to photograph for the visitor pubs. 

The move and multiple assignments have left me knackered. Fortunately, we have a three-day weekend as we celebrate the official close of summer months. Art-Buyer vacations will soon be over and it's time to organize and distribute a new email promo-spam which I plan to begin in the next couple of days.

Happy Labor Day to all! 

I leave you with one of the videos from a six part series called Capture, produced by the always brilliant Mark Seliger of Rolling Stone Magazine fame. Conversations with notables... revealing, inspiring & humbling; this episode with photography icon Albert Watson. Other episodes include portrait master Platon, photographer, director & actor Dylan McDermott & other legends of the industry.