Saturday, May 31, 2008

NIghtmares

Today's the 2nd "House of Nightmares" group shoot event in Columbus, held in a building which is a "haunted house" during Halloween season and I guess at other times of the year. I did get some nice stuff last year, and hope that this time around goes as well, although one of the few decent windows to provide light has been boarded up, so that will present an added challenge, plus there's a formal "area reservation" scheme in place which will probably present other challenges. That, and people have been dropping out left and right, and it's going to be one of the first genuinely hot and humid days of the year, so we'll see how it goes. Wish me luck.

Here are a couple more of Rhia, completely unrelated to the HON event, but still looking lovely.

Friday, May 30, 2008

Dead

Well, word is that the car I wrecked in NYC has been totaled, so it's a goner. Do have a loaner from my generous mechanic here in town while I figure out what to do next. Think I'll have to go shopping this weekend and next week, but not much I hate more than car shopping just because of the uncertainty of it. Well, actually, the certainty that whatever I buy will have some sort of major malfunction that will end up costing additional hundreds or thousands of dollars. Most of the cars I've bought in my life have worked out that way, even if I have a mechanic check them out in advance.

Maybe the answer is to buy a total piece of crap for cash, KNOWING it will require money to keep it running, and consider the repair bill as the "car payment." I wonder if the beat up old Impala that Rhia is reclining on here is available?



P.S. One good thing I've found about having people who dislike you is that you can count on them to be your most faithful blog readers.

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Pressed my luck...

Not sure how much I should say about this picture, other than while nobody was hurt (other than a bump on Tia's head, which she tells me is feeling better.) the damage is probably worse than it looks. Had to leave the car in NYC because it would take a week or so to get it repaired, or so I'm told. At this point, the best case is for the insurance company to announce it DOA and pay me a fraction of what it's worth (and what I owe) just so I don't have to fly to NYC and drive the damn thing back after it gets "repaired" by the same guys who ruined the front bumper towing it. So, to add insult to injury, the towing company somehow let it get broken into to take the GPS unit. (If you notice, the small rear window is intact... when we went to retrieve the stuff from the trunk, the window had been broken. "Eddie" says he'll pay to replace the GPS if I send him my bill.) Again, fortunate that the thieves weren't smart enough to steal the gear left in the trunk, even though I was stupid enough to believe the tow truck drivers when they said the contents would be safe.

Also want to say I'm sorry to Tia for the personal shock to the system of being involved in the accident, and apologize to her that my carelessness caused her to miss two shoots in Pennsylvania, but I'm sure she'll find a way to work with those photographers soon to create more memorable images.

So, to all you who said I must be crazy to drive in NYC, despite my earlier report, I must now agree with you. Difficult to say how hard the insurance company is going to rear end me after this, in light of the accident earlier this year.

But that's not the thing that pains me most about the day...

Among the Missing

Here's Dani modeling a couple of wardrobe items that were among what was stolen from the trunk of my car a couple weeks ago. I've tried the transparent blouse with a couple of other models, but I think these are probably the best results, so I guess it served its purpose. The poncho was $4 or so, and I'd say I got my money's worth from it, too. Wonder what the thieves are doing with them?

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Insignificance

Nothing like travel to evoke feelings and provoke thought... driving a quarter of the way across the country and seeing the countless towns and cities, each with thousands or even millions of people, each with their own stories and problems and triumphs, multiplied by the countless routes we did NOT take and the rest of the country and world that we did not traverse. Then to end up in New York, with its millions of people and endless streets and buildings and spaces. It's daunting and humbling. (On the plus side, seeing the millions upon millions of trees along the Pennsylvania highways does provide a certain hope that maybe the world isn't going to shrivel up and die in the next few months.)

There's a certain arrogance in expecting oneself to be anything but insignificant in a world so large. In a way, it's horribly depressing, but in other ways, it feels like it could be terribly liberating, knowing that what one person does, with a very few exceptions, has no meaning beyond ones own self. So, do anything, do nothing -- chances are nobody will notice. And I guess you might as well do what you damn well feel like, as nobody will go out of their way to make sure you're getting what you want.

I'm not sure if this is a great attitude to take to a day of photoshoots, or a lousy attitude, but it's just what's crossed my mind the last few days and I thought I'd leave it here rather than carry it around with me all day.

The photo is Chase from her apartment...

Saturday, May 24, 2008

Another worthy cause

Went to a photo seminar thing the other night, and while it was the usual mix of good information and sales pitch, at the end there was a rather moving video about an organization called Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep, which provides an usual service to families. Volunteer photographers make their services available to capture photos of terminally ill infants and children so the parents can have beautiful images to remember their child and begin healing the loss. At the seminar in Cincinnati, out of about 300 people in the room, six women stood up as already being volunteer photographers. Click the link above to learn how the organization came about and more about their work, and to see some very beautiful photographs made more powerful by knowing the story behind them.

I'm not sure if it's something I'd be cut out for, but I do encourage you all to take a look at the site and consider if you have what it takes to volunteer for this delicate duty, or make a donation to help spread the word.

This is Angie, whose baby was born happy and healthy about 5 months ago...

Friday, May 23, 2008

A worthy cause...

Today is the official launch date of an unusual internet project to benefit singer/songwriter Katie Reider, http://www.500kin365.org/, an effort to get 500,000 people to link to the site. Katie is being treated for a rare form of cancer, and I'm guessing her medical bills are staggering. Those linking to her site will be asked to contribute $1.00 but will receive access to music, videos, and photos featuring Katie and her band. I blogged about shooting with her and her band previously, and I hope you will take the time to click this link and take a few minutes to add a link or lend your support.

Here's to your continued successful treatment, Katie, and I hope you raise money to pay for it all and a nice vacation, too. You've earned it!

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

NYC

Leaving for New York City in the morning, and looking forward to the trip with some mixed feelings. I have some very promising shoots lined up for the weekend, and hopefully a little time to just relax, maybe see a few things around the city. Had been hoping to see X at the Fillmore Plaza, but it sold out behind my back. (Anyone with an extra ticket, please let me know.)

Took an odd approach to booking shoots this time... rather than try to pin down models weeks and months in advance, only to have them cancel a few days ahead of time or just not show up (as happened in Chicago), I figured I'd try scheduling closer to the time I'd actually be in NYC. A model will likely know for certain what her schedule is a few days in advance, how she's feeling, etc. So far, it seems to be working OK.

The pessimist in me tends to focus on the uncertain, dangerous, and expensive aspects of NYC... for instance, I'd made reservations at the Carlton Arms Hotel, but evidently they expected me to "reconfirm" a couple weeks ago, and when I didn't, they gave my room away. So, rather than staying in Manhattan, we'll be in Brooklyn. Hope it's safer than London, Ohio, at least. It's just that everyone always warns you about stuff when you go to New York, not "oh, be sure to go see this inspirational thing or visit this great place or try this amazing restaurant."

Orixx is shooting with a number of top-notch photographers whose work I've admired... too bad she won't let me tag along on any of the shoots. Oh well... guess that's the price I pay for not being a highly sought model. Well, wish us luck!

(P.S. This is Rhia in Dayton...)

Like a thief in the night...

Woke up Sunday morning in a motel in sleepy little London, Ohio, to see the trunk of my car standing open. I ran out to see what had happened... apart from a little moisture from the rain, it seemed OK. My lightstands, tripod, strobe case, and a few other items were still there. Kind of had a good feeling like "aw, in this little town, it's still safe to leave a door unlocked." Not sure what had happened... I figured I'd managed to hit the trunk release button on the remote from inside without knowing it. Went about our day.

Wasn't until Orixx and I got home did she realize she was missing a small shopping bag including some clothes and costume jewelry she'd just purchased. Then I realized I was missing a "gym bag" that had a bunch of my wardrobe/props in it... and also missing are a bunch of CDs from the library, and maybe a few other things I haven't missed yet. So much for my good feeling about small town America. It quickly changed to "I've parked in some bad areas of Detroit with no incidents, but come to London, Ohio, and stuff goes missing." Also starting to wonder if the trunk had been opened by persuasion instead of on accident. And kind of bemusement at whoever took the stuff, taking maybe $150 worth of CDs and clothes and crap, and leaving about $1000 worth of gear behind. They probably got a surprise when they opened my bag... a little bondage tape, some rope, some handcuffs, some panties, some very rough looking clamps. (Not exactly the kind of stuff you file a police report about when it's stolen from your trunk.) Anyway, whoever took the stuff, I hate you and I hope you die in a fire, to borrow a phrase from Andi.

Here are a couple of the beautiful Minxy D to help lighten the mood...

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Friends

Just a few of a couple good friends having fun at a photo shoot. Funny, I don't recall seeing anyone so photogenic at my local home improvement superstore...

Saturday, May 17, 2008

Spill some Sugar on me...

A few more with the charming and talented Spilt Sugar, who is earning as many accolades as a photographer as she does modeling. I sometimes wonder why these talented "modelographers" consent to shoot with regular old photographers like me, when they could do as well or better on their own. I guess it's to get a different perspective, or maybe there's something to be learned from everyone.

Obviously, she did a great job modeling for me, and it was a great honor to work with her. I hope to again soon.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Urban Nights, May 16

At the last minute, I've been invited to display a few pieces at the "Artists of Front Street" space at 411A East Fifth Street in Dayton's Oregon District, next to Ned Pepper's. While the display is going to be part of this Friday's Urban Nights event, work from the various artists (including Dave Levingston) will be hanging in the space for several weeks. More information on other times the space will be open when I receive it, but for now, if you're in the area, make plans to attend the Urban Nights event this Friday and get a feel for the creativity happening right here in Dayton.

A work of art in her own right, here is Malinda...

Erotic Review

Just received a copy of the April issue of The Erotic Review (#88) which features the winners of their photo contest. One of my shots (above) was featured among the "Reader's Prize" selections... it's a British magazine, so may be tough to find on newsstands here in the states, but ordering single copies and subscriptions from the site is easy and reasonably priced. John Tisbury and Martin H. M. Schreiber were also among the "Reader's Prize" selections, so some high-profile company there. Thanks to those of you who voted!

Thanks also to the folks at NuExpo for including me on their home page again and showcasing these shots of Zinn Star, Megan, and Iris.

On edit: Also, just found another nice little feature link from the folks at Freshnudes.net featuring shots of Iris, Diann, Angela, Amaya and Italian Kitten... as well as a what's been called my "serial killer" self portrait. Thanks for the links!

Sunday, May 4, 2008

Miami Vice

Well, been in Miami since Friday, so why not a report from the road? Traveling with Orrix, who I'm sure will cover her perspective on her blog in the next day or two. Did get to attend the relocated ArtUndressed show on Friday night, and it was good to see the artwork, and chat with a few of the other artists. It was a pretty low key event, and as I believe is now mandatory for art shows, they were still hanging pieces half an hour after it was supposed to open. By the time it was supposed to end at 10, they had the air conditioning working, the lights on in the place, and all the art hung and tagged. Since Friday was more of a "private" event for artists, collectors and media, I guess it doen't matter quite as much. Still no word on whether my piece sold, but not holding my breath. Did get to see printed copy of the new book from Erotic Signature that includes my piece "Cruel Shoes" and the printing was quite good, so I'm pleased with that. (Me, pleased with something? That IS a reason to alert the media!) Missed the event at the World Erotic Art Museum, not realizing how early it ended, as well as the wild party events, so you'll need to get those reports from someone else. Iris?

Got up bright and early Saturday and Sunday to shoot with Orixx on Miami's famous Haulover nude beach, and she did a great job posing (despite a few gawkers) while I fought with some "challenging" lighting conditions. I know we got a lot of winners, but I'll need to get to my home computer before I can say how many and which ones. This morning we met an intriguging Lithuanian woman at the beach, a former model and ballerina and currently an artist and fashionista. She asked Orixx to pose for a few snapshots that she may use as reference for painting, then she was gracious enough to let me do a few shots with her with Orixx and on her own. She still has the body of a ballerina, and as is the problem on nude beaches, nobody had a pen to write down contact information, but I think we'll be able to track her down. (No, do not panic... I didn't get nude at the beach... got sunburned enough with shorts and no shirt.) For those who think it's a sexy, glamorous place to be, realize that 95% of the people at this nude beach were men, most of whom were age 55+ and/or built like me...

Also on Saturday shot with a woman who was a Penthouse cover model a while back -- this was her first shoot in about 4 years, and she's thrilled with the images as seen on the back of the camera, to the point that she's considering getting back into some modeling. And let's say, I have some contenders to enter in the next "Dirty Show."

Today, after Orixx's 4th shoot of the weekend (not counting me) we made the long meandering drive to Sarasota and have basically been recovering from the energy-sap of sunburn and a busy weekend. Looking forward to seeing Radiohead on Tuesday, and making it back to Miami on Wednesday, possibly shooting with another high-profile model if we can get the stars to align. Cross your fingers!

This shot is Jessica, who has a great profile herself...

Thursday, May 1, 2008

The Absolute Photographer

These first three are NOT my images.

Although I wish they were. Actually, they are self-portraits done by the lovely Whitney, who also goes by The Absolute. She's just as talented and distinctive behind the lens as she is in front of it. She just finished the large image with the feather collar, and it prompted me to just put together this entry to give her props. You can see more of her photographic work here and you can see a few of the photos I did with her in my archive. We were supposed to shoot a few weeks ago, but some scheduling wires got crossed, so we're probably going to do it after this quarter is over. We may make it a foray into the woods of central Ohio. I'm looking forward to it.

Here are a couple more that I did with her... hope I did her justice. :)