Category Archives: Night

OCTOBER 4, 2015

Note: we were without internet for 2 days and it held up sending these 2 posts.

Night

Night is a great moment to step outside of where you live to look at where you live. It is different to see it at night. Another layer of mystery might be revealed about why any one of us chooses to live any where. So night time can tell us a lot about ourselves. Well…maybe.

Around the back I came across the two chairs we sometimes sit or lie on. They sat in the last radiance of the day and seemed to glow. Chairs that I would never think of photographing, but how could I not in this light?

And the house itself, when I turned back to it, seemed so inviting that I  found myself standing there, saying ‘who lives there?’ I was happy to remember that it was me. It was so simple and innocent and inviting, that I simply raised the camera to acknowledge the ordinary, but welcoming sight it has become.

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SEPTEMBER 27, 2015

Keeping The Record

Not every day has interesting photographs in it. Some days it’s just a record of being alive and seeing something curious in a familiar place, even if it’s of minimal interest, like this street in the small town, Buonconvento where we live. During that week the town held its annual Sagra Festival, where all 4 quarters of the town cook for the whole town and any visitors who wish to come. On the last night of the festival they held a ‘fashion show’ in which the young kids paraded down the street trying to be glamourous. The town threw itself into the event and set up this ‘runway’ in the middle of the street. What appealed to me was the vision of modernity set inside a place built a 1000 years ago.

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AUGUST 8, 2015

Maggie’s Birth Day

We went to a friend’s restaurant knowing we’d have great food and a good time, and it was even better and funnier than we expected. Celebrations are great moments for making pictures for all the usual reasons; the special moment, the memories, the friends who one day won’t be around but are captured in their liveliest expressions and stay that way for us. Here are four women from 16 to 66 who span the generations yet look so comfortable and beautiful together

Often the camera does things that can only show up as visible in a photograph; that’s the magic of the medium. Maggie ‘s cake came out with a sparkler blazing away, and when I made the shot the sparkler had a fraction of a moment of less sparkle before exploding again, and in that space the shutter – at 1/ 30th of a second – was open long enough to make 2 recordings of everything.

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Then someone put on a Berlusconi mask and just as in his real life the women flocked to him. And here again an accidental ‘catch’ occurred, someone else’s flash went off just as I opened my shutter and it produced this ‘bronzy,’ garish color and hard light.

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JULY 28, 2015

Heavens Above

I have never been one who makes night sky images. Film was not so responsive for doing that, and more often than not it made pictures of streaks of starlight left behind by the rotation of the globe and the time it took to make the shot. But digital is different, and although this is no brilliant photograph it is a reminder of how easy it is to consider the new subjects that might come from looking at things freshly and seeing how they might relate to the heavens above.

Reminders like that are important to thinking photographically.

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JULY 21, 2015

Jewel Box

I was asked to give a talk at the Cortona, On The Move Festival, and then teach a workshop the next day. I arrived at the jewel box of an opera house and was amazed to see this small but grand old theater which was full of students and visitors by the time I was ready to speak.

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Out on the street afterwards I was attracted to this couple, mainly the electric blue of her dress and the great pair of legs, and there was certainly a charge they both gave off.

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Later in the day, after walking around the whole town for hours, I made my way out to the piazza which offered a grand view of the valley, and there I saw the couple again, she wedged into him so close that it justified my response in the morning. It’s always a delicate situation to get close to people who are in an intimate and private moment. It requires a kind of determined boldness, but also delicate footwork, and body feints and deceptions, something I have learned how to do by being on the streets for so many years. It’s exciting too, to see just how close I can come and still not be considered breeching the space they need for their own sense of freedom.

Whenever I see this kind of intimacy in public, the way she has fit herself into him and the way it looks! I find it tells me, or at least suggests to me, something of their, hidden from the public life, and that kind of eros, it projects makes me pay close attention.

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Later I met up with the whole staff of the festival for dinner. We were twice as many as in this frame, but at some point I looked at that Renoir poster on the wall and felt that life continues as always and only the costumes change. Youth and energy, yearnings and life’s mysteries, spin us all through time so one day we can remember these moments of joy and freedom.

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Leaving the restaurant I saw this old woman out in the night, and immediately felt the sense of time as so fleeting; that from youth and love and wonder, we come to age, and it seems but a blink.

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JUNE 22, 2015

Roadside Opera

Here’s a little story. We had gone to a nearby town for dinner and on the way back, as we passed through a burgo, a small collection of about 5 houses, we saw that 3 people were sitting on the bench right there on the edge of the road that passed through the place. Gianni, ever the connection between all things Tuscan, called out to them as we passed by and they waved to us to stop.

As soon as we did, the Italian Opera began, as always, with gestures, and a half hour of stories and laughter. One of the men had broken his arm and was holding a hand carved stick which helped him do whatever he needed to do with his one good arm. By the end of the exchange Gianni walked away with his stick. How he managed to get the guy to give it to him I cannot say, but it offered me a wonderful few minutes of watching the whole drama play out.

Even the nights in Tuscany are rich with possibility.

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