Perfect Storm

Is there really a perfect storm? I think the pre-Halloween storm we had in the Hartford area was pretty close. With the wet snow, it took down branches from most of my trees and completely knocked down at least 4. I still don’t know how many others on my property will die because of broken branches.Remains of a really large tree that lost most of it’s branches and had to come down. It doesn’t look that large, but at the base it was over 3 ft in diameter. Here’s some more.

Have I mentioned that the snow that fell weighed 40 lbs per cubic foot and that it fell on trees that still had most of their leaves? No wonder the branches came down! Even the pine trees that are supposed to be able to take it lost a lot of branches.

We had at least 3 crews working on the cleanup. Things are getting back to normal, however. I only wish I had done a video with sound of what it was like as the branches and trees were falling with this sick thud. Sometimes you could hear a branch crack at the top and as it fell it took down a series of lower branches. My wife and I slept in the basement that night because we have one oak with some big branches hanging directly over our bedroom. Fortunately they are still there and our house survived without a scratch.

Were you in the storm? Let me know what happened to you. We can compare notes such as how long you were without power. For us, it was 8 days.


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Hartford Photographer Travels

From Hartford To Shanghai

When I started my advertising photography business in Hartford, I had no idea I would travel the world on assignment for big companies. I was blown away by China, Korea, and Indonesia. Fortunately, we always had guides and drivers to help us on our way. I’ve always been willing to drive in Europe (except the UK), but often it’s been more efficient in countries like France or Belgium to let the client do the driving. More about my adventures driving in Italy and Greece in upcoming posts. The trip of expanding my business from Hartford CT to Europe, Asia and South America has been an exciting ride. I’ve got stories and lots more photography so you’re invited.

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Shanghai Ride

Missing Shanghai

Believe it or not I miss my travels to China and other places like Jakarta. At least now I am traveling around the US. In the near future I have North Carolina and New Jersey scheduled for shoots and very likely another trip to the Midwest. For this Hartford photographer travel has become a way of life that I find exciting. This photo was taken on my second trip to Shanghai and I was struck by the intensity of the city outside our window. My cab driver didn’t mind having me take a shot of his license. I doubt he’ll see it. By now he could be a bank president. That’s the way things are changing over there. Let me know about your experiences in China. This is another in my series on People At Work.

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Workingman’s Photography

My Brother Working In His Shop

This is no ordinary shop in the basement. It has everything you need to build beautiful furniture and create almost anything out of wood or metal. And my brother takes it seriously. He was fun to photograph because as we grew up he was always building something. It really reminded me of back in the day. Expect a whole series on working and I am planning a book about a particular occupation, so stay tuned.

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Photography Down Below

What’s it like to work over 2000 ft below the surface? I got a taste when I went below with  several miners. Overall, the most frightening part was the ride back from darkness to daylight. The mine ceiling was at least a couple of feet above my head, but I kept ducking because we were moving pretty fast during our exit. It is beautiful country down there in Appalachia. I was hoping to hear some live music, but all I got was a CD form one of the local groups. Nice to be back up on top.

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Guilford Fair

You can see what the Guilford Fair poster looked like back in the day. I was shooting in an old barn and saw this poster. I couldn’t figure the date however. It was old enough to have spots on in and fit nicely with the other items on the wall. No big concept here except to see how they used to do posters.

What Year?

If you know what year this poster came out, I would appreciate you letting me know. The easiest way is to leave a comment. Have any guesses?

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How Green?

How Green Is Green?

I’ve been giving a lot of thought to sustainable practices lately since many of my clients are involved in making their businesses greener. In addition, I am the sustainability liaison for AIGA Connecticut. What does that mean? It means I am working with designers around the country to try to make sustainable practices normal. But more on that later.

Part of my work lately has been going around shooting Connecticut farms and this is a beautiful example of a broccoli and cabbage field nestled in the rolling hills. It was raining but I think that only helped increase the intensity of the greens.

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Turn A Hummer Green

Here we aren’t talking about fuel efficient or eco-friendly. This little baby will make a Hummer green with envy. Next to this rock hauling truck I shot at the top of a strip mine in West Virginia, a Hummer looks like a roller skate. This is coal country, and after they blast the rock away they need to put it somewhere so they can get at the coal. This truck makes it possible.

Big Scare

The worst thing about this three story beast, other than the mileage (can it even go a mile on a gallon?) is that it weighs so much it’s hard to stop. So when I drove over to the mine, I had to climb up this dirt road that felt like a chapter from the Inferno. There were signs lining both sides of the road warning that trucks coming down the hill would not be able to stop. In other words, DANGER! As my hands were sweating and I drove slowly up the narrow road, I kept thinking there must be a regular procedure so they don’t kill people. Besides, there really wasn’t anywhere to go. There were deep ditches on both sides of the road. If I drove off either side, I would probably flip my car. But I was ready to try it, if I saw one of those beasts roaring down on me.

Well you know the answer, I lived to tell this tale. I didn’t even see any monster trucks until I got to the top and at that point it was parked. I had another run in with these babies when I went to Indonesia. We had to shoot at a factory where they were built. They were all neatly parked nose to nose. They didn’t seem to be selling many, so maybe strip mining isn’t as popular as it used to be.

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Eight To The Bar

Can You Hear The Music?

This image of the new Eight To The Bar CD cover is smaller than my usual image posts. that’s because I wanted you to see what the CD looked like, so you can buy it at one of their concerts. They are truly a remarkable band. Every time I listen to one of their CDs, I am amazed at their talent and creativity. On this one called Romper Room I was hired by master graphic designer James Pettus of Farmington, CT.

The idea was to create the feeling of a brothel with their beautiful lead singer standing outside waiting to seduce her next customer. The view to the left is a peek inside the “romper room” where customers are having a good time. In this case the customers are the rest of the band. Design and photoshop are by James. When I created the photo the doorway was on the right. It was a cool shot that James made even cooler.

You can view other photos from the shoot as well as find out more about the band at their website. Make sure to look at their schedule because you just have to see them live. And BTW, after you see them, let me know what you think. Thanks.

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Sustainable Design

Solar Energy

Last week I photographed the interior of this older brick building in Manhattan. The designers were very smart. They rehabbed the old building instead of tearing it down. More important, they figured a way to use the sun instead of electric lights. The conference room and many of the other rooms do not have to rely on electricity for light during the day, because there are large window that let in the sun. But it does not stop there. The interior walls are glass, so the hallways are also lit. And so that the conference rooms provide privacy, the walls become frosted with the touch of a button. Even when frosted, most of the sunlight still illuminates the interior of the building. Sexy stuff.

I really like the open airy feeling created by the sun coming through the conference room’s glass walls. I think it’s beautiful too, as it contrasts with the hardwood floor. What do you think?

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