Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Curiosity is What We Share

Yesterday, my assistant Garry and I were shooting a tricked out, all electric Mini Cooper developed at the Institute for Transportation Studies at UC Davis for Sierra Magazine.

We were working in a tucked away corner of the university's arboretum, near one of the biggest collection of oaks in the world. We were just wrapping up, when a curious fellow photographer stopped by to look at our 10 foot scrim. I persuaded him to stick around while we gathered our subjects' model releases and said our goodbyes. Then I nabbed this portrait of him with his homemade portable studio rig.

Allan Jones, our new friend here, takes close ups of specimens from the arboretum's oak trees when they blossom once a year. He's adapted a cardboard box to capture these flowering samples bathed in gorgeous scrimmed and bounced sunlight. My kind o' light.

Here's to curious, crazy shooters. Big, small, cardboard, aluminum. We love our gear, we love our light.

Hunter Joerger Teaches Me A Thing or Two

This year I mentored a student at my son's high school, Mr. Hunter Joerger, while he created his senior signature project.

In the project, Hunter illustrated his neuroscience research about the connection between brain growth and the development of identity with photographic portraits of young children. This week all the graduating seniors celebrated with a school wide party and display of their projects. Hunter's wall of photos rocked the audience. Compassionate, clear, and sensitive, his exhibition was sophisticated and riveting.

Here's my favorite quote from Hunter's paper:
"Photography can be used to examine the root of perception of identity because it can be analyzed both analytically and viscerally. And it is at the connection between the analytical and visceral that the importance of identity and the ability to perceive it can be understood."

Yes, Hunter's paper taught me how the superior colliculi and thalmus collect and pass visual information and non-verbal awareness on to other parts of the brain. But Hunter himself taught me a thing or two about being an educator. Like how much more important it is to listen than talk. That it's far wiser to be patient than insistent. And that there is great benefit in allowing a flower to bloom, rather than tear the petals apart in search of color. A project develops much as the brain itself does. One lives. One learns.

Thanks for the lessons, Hunter. =]

And bravo! Toss your hat into the ring of experts. You da bomb.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Freewheelin' Farm delivering in the City

Yesterday was Freewheelin' Farm's first San Francisco CSA delivery and the strawberries for the record, were scarlet, not red.

Here's beloved Amy helping Anya, a giddy new customer, select her treats for the week.

Heh, San Fran-ola! Sign yourself up here and pick your own bag of treats out at Garden for the Environment, corner of 7th and Lawton. Easy peasy.