Recently I was asked to photograph the workspace and environment of an acclaimed Creative Branding and Design firm Lodge 26, that The Die Line did an article on, in their "Inside the Studio" section. The article is a look at the space creatives work in, the environment they surround themselves with and its importance to the creative process. So have a read, and take a look at the images. They did a great job on this.
I just finished a new video project. I was approached from a friend who got involved as a photographer on a special project, he was to photograph, document and archive, the teardown, the moving and relocation, and restoration of a 120 year old chapel in Heath, Texas. Most of you will recognize Rockwall, Texas. Heath is just south of there. He was to be the still Photographer of note as it were. The people who he was working for however were on the very beginning of this whole project, which was going to be a bit expensive to undertake. So they hired me, at his recommendation, to produce a short film to promote the project and help to get the word out and raise money to accomplish this task. I interviewed, shot, edited and finished two cuts for them, a six minute piece with the backstory and history of this chapel, and what it meant to the people who had called it theirs for so long. I also did a one minute cutdown piece for social media. So....
So if you so inclined, go to The Smirl Chapel Relocation Project and find out more about this project.
So I am taking my drone out for a spin to to do a panorama of the Dallas skyline with its new construction and it's generally busy attitude, as I am prone to do. I arrive on Swiss ave near the "Walking Tall" walking man sculpture which is at at one end of Deep Ellum. ( you can see him in the lower right third of the above image ). I get out my drone and proceed to shoot, capturing the stills needed to compile a pano of our lovely Dallas skyline. I'm shooting along and grabbing some video footage for my reel as well, the when I return to the car I find this...
This car and uhm, "driver" is parked just a bit behind me. This car was here when I drove up and parked but it appeared unoccupied. I seem to run into this kinda thing often, I have seen, and shot a very similar image to this one on several different occasions. Sometimes it's at a gas station or a convenience store, sometimes it's a cat sometimes it's a dog. Is there something to this? Is there something someone isn't telling me? I think the law of averages says I should have used up my quota on this already but it keeps happening.
In 1927 Philo Farnsworth invented and realized the worlds first electronic television. This was a device that would go on change the world. It permeates society today. "Tele-vision" the ability to see at a distance, as it is sometime described, or more etymologically (Tele) far (visio) sight.
Far Sight, it's anything but that, in the fullness of time, sure it technically fulfills that definition, but on just about every other level it is not farsighted. It is also possibly the most misused, underutilized, piece of technology we have. This was an issue for which Philo had not planned or forseen. Many times we see a need and then fill that need but without considering or understanding the full implications of what we have created, or how it will be used.
It was this kind of thinking that got me on to the subject, and I thought would it be funny if the guy who invented television, while he was first testing it, got interrupted by an ad! Something we get entirely too much of now. What would that look like and how would that play out? So I decided to do a short "spec spot" or commercial that illustrated this. It started out as a spec spot but during production it became something else. It became more of a short film, and while I did do an edit that was a commercial I abandoned that idea and just went with the short film. The reason for this was that during research and production, I discovered that Philo had great expectations for his new invention. He expected this technology to be used for the betterment of humanity, however, reality intervened. If you read the wiki page linked above you can see how this played out. This piece now plays out like a microcosm of his experience with the invention of the television. So here is my short film "Philo's Pholly"
This film just won an Award of Recognition from the IndieFest film festival in La Jolla ! Whoop !
So many of you have seen the new shared bike systems that have sprawled all over our city and many other cities across the country. Sentiments seem to be very mixed from "hey good idea" to "clean this mess up". I had a particular experience with these recently. We noticed these had recently shown up all over town but the suddenly one day they were at the park across from our house. Then a day or so later people had left them in our front yard. Then about a week later I was working in in my office one evening, and I heard a voice, which at first I couldn't place, it might have been coming from another room, but then I heard it again, and it was coming from just outside my window. It said "Please activate me to ride me or I will call the police" then a brief moment later " Please activate me or I will call the police". I had no idea what to make of this but when I went to the window all I saw was a Limebike parked between my and our neighbors house
What had happened was there were two burglars running through the neighborhood and the police were hot on their trail with cars and a helicopter and spotlights and such. It seems one of them was trying to get away on this Limebike, but even it threatened to call the police so he dropped it just outside my window! I called 911 and told them what had happened. A few minutes later I am standing outside and a plain clothes unmarked car stops and rolls down his window and tells me he is police and asks if I have seem the two people in question. I said no but I did call about this bike he attempted to take. I told him it threatened to call the police if he didn't leave it or activate it. He just kinda looks at me. I said it talked. He said it talked? I said yes, twice, it talked, they talk. He looked at me and just said well if you see these two guys call 911.
So that was the impetus for this new short, enjoy. "The day before the night of the Limebikes"
Written and directed by Lyn and Judy Caudle
- Her ...Kacie Bangle
- Him ...Lyn Caudle
- Bikes ....as themselves
"War of the Worlds" 1953 is one of my all time favorite movies, and the 2005 version is not too shabby either. Many of you who, may or may not follow my flickr photo stream, (if you don't you should) will know is that one of my projects is photographing toys in an appropriate environment. So for my latest photographic endeavor I decided to build some "War of the Worlds" models and photograph them in and around iconic Dallas locations, another of my favorite subjects. So what if the Martian war machines rolled through our city......
These models were photographed in situ, at the time of capture, that is to say at the same time as the locations, it is a forced perspective trick that has been in use for many many years. This was a factor that I was unwilling to compromise on. This way the light is correct, thats the single most important thing for work like this.
A fair number of people who have seen these, asked where I got the images of the war machines, suspecting that I found them on the web and just photoshopped them in to existing pictures or built and rendered them in a 3D application, like Maya or Softimage. Nope.
I shot two sometimes three images, one for the Model in place on a stand and then move the model out of the shot and shoot a "clean" BG plate, and occasionally shoot a smaller model or move the model and shoot that as well. Once I had the images I removed whatever was holding the model via photoshop and using the "clean" BG plate to aid in cleanup then add smoke, fire, debris etc. I wanted a considered approach. I wanted to travel around a look through the lens and see the model in the frame, at the location and see if it told a story or had impact, not to mention just basic line up. This was for me a much more fun way to do this. I have made prints of these 18"x24" and hope to do something interesting with them soon. If your interested in a print let me know. email@example.com
Above I said I hoped to do something with these images soon, well soon is now, I have 4 of the 18"x24" prints in the summer salon show at Kettle Art, in the heart of Deep Ellum for the next few weeks, the rest of the series of larger prints are currently at the Get Reel Goods store on Elm in Deep Ellum. I also have smaller 8"x10" ish prints available at Makers Connect in East Dallas. So send all your Sci FI Dallas Art loving friends and family to these places and check it all out.
Below are a couple of progressions as an example of how these came together.