double portrait

ignite ~ july

on a day at an arcade with my nieces, i noticed these two kids with a rather large pile of tickets. considering each game turns out like maybe four of them, seeing a pile of them en mass all connected together was odd. even stranger was their casual contained excitement - like no big deal here. so, i moved a little closer and looked for the right angle to photograph them and the pile of tickets when they picked them up, placed them on their heads and posed for their father and grandfather (who were off to the right) taking an iphone picture for their mom. i was going to pass until the one kid turned to me and smiled.

arcade in louisville, ky | july, 2014

arcade in louisville, ky | july, 2014

while i'm mindful that the image quality is lacking (this is when film would have delivered a more exacting result), i like the story going on here, particularly as they left a strand of tickets coming out of the machine.

and so next in our little group which always leaves me inspired is January Skye, Melbourne photographer.

ignite ~ may

sometimes i am so drawn into what's in front of me...that i miss the a tiny yet profound detail.

here, on my way to the train, i noticed a car idling near the platform, which isn't a common sight these days as the station is closed to all vehicles except those with HP place-cards, so it was surprising to see a car let alone what i found.

as i got closer, the music got louder and there was a couple presumably enjoying the last moments before a goodbye together. i decided to get close and take a few images; then when they turned around, i asked if i could take their portrait. as i did, i checked everything inside the view but...i was so focused on light, lines and the surrounding elements, that i overlooked a tiny face peeking up from inside the car, so when i pulled the image and viewed to edit, my jaw dropped.

veda & christopher + child | salem, 2014

this friends is that wonderful kind of surprise i couldn't stage or even conceive of & one i view as a gift that draws me back in again & again, and it's this aspect of photography i find most rewarding.

next in our little group of talent is one i always look forward to seeing - particularly her Rockwell-ish vignette type of photographs: Katie, Kate Suzanne Photography, Asheville, NC photographer.

the double portrait

while listening to a panel at the flash forward festival a few years ago, i heard a gallery owner and collector talk at length about the "double portrait." while the first image that came to mind was that of Twins by Diane Arbus, when i searched the term, i was surprised to see a famous work by 15th c painter Jan van Eyck -  the Arnolfini Wedding.

i came into art and photography through art history and actually specialized in northern renaissance painting. as such, i'm well familiar with the work of Flemish & Dutch painters from 15th to 17th century.

danny & mike | revere beach, 2013

when i looked through my portfolio, i found more than a few double portraits and over the years, i've kept this in mind.  last year on the train back to salem, i found myself in one of the older cars - the ones where two rows of seats actually face each other - and met Danny, and knew immediately i wanted to photograph him. we talked the way back and i learned about him and his boyfriend mike.

we met a month later and spent a little time on revere beach parkway which is where i took this portrait: positioned on the wall of the causeway with the grasslands and the ocean behind them, and a ledge on the right leading back to their home. the light, the soft smiles, the openness, mike's hands in his pockets while danny's hands are out and loose, the touching knees. this to me is one of the finest examples i have of the double portrait.