Posts tagged with "portrait"

whales in the bodies of tiny fish

It’s been months since I had an appoint­ment with my ther­a­pist. I’ve needed the time to work on myself before mak­ing fur­ther progress with him; a sign that I’m at a point where there’s a sense of direc­tion, instead of relent­less con­fu­sion and dread. Now it’s a mat­ter of absorb­ing the con­cepts I should know by now, devolop­ing health­ier emo­tional habits, and let­ting time heal what rea­son can­not. As my body recov­ers from the phys­i­cal reper­cus­sions of depres­sion, find­ing the energy to do these things gets a bit eas­ier each sea­son1.

As a result, I’ve been pick­ing up new respon­si­bil­i­ties in my pri­mary rela­tion­ship, which I have to care­fully bal­ance with my per­sonal goals. Maybe that’s why my wants have become such sim­ple mat­ters. Some days, I look for­ward to noth­ing more than eat­ing ice cream after din­ner, or play­ing a game until my thumbs are raw. The dis­til­la­tion of my dreams has given me another child­hood, which I’m deter­mined not to squander.


Part of the rea­son I stopped tak­ing pic­tures is because I needed to believe Heather was real. To prove to myself that she wouldn’t sud­denly dis­ap­pear and only exist as a col­lec­tion of pix­els on my screen, like so many lovers of my past2. Mostly it was because every­thing was ter­ri­ble, and just being con­scious was a bur­den. Some days I was too sad to walk or eat, let alone decide what lens to put on my cam­era or how to frame a shot. The start of any rela­tion­ship tends to be a time of won­der and excite­ment for me, but I don’t remem­ber those years with par­tic­u­lar fond­ness3.

Continue read­ing “whales in the bod­ies of tiny fish”…

  1. There have been many steps back on the jour­ney for­ward, enough for the progress to be indis­cernible from a week-to-week (or even month-by-month) basis. []
  2. It’s strange to real­ize that my drive to pho­to­graph things was par­tially a way of deal­ing with my aban­don­ment issues. []
  3. At least I feel secure in the knowl­edge that Heather stuck by me when I was lit­er­ally at my worst. []

Humble & Brilliant

Jesse’s Dangerously’s lat­est knock­out album, Humble & Brilliant1, has been released as a dig­i­tal down­load only with no phys­i­cal media. However, you can also pur­chase a chap­book for those of us who enjoy the tac­tile feel­ing of liner notes, lyrics, and kick-ass illus­tra­tions. Included in the dig­i­tal down­load is this top­less pic­ture of Jesse I took to pro­mote the album.

Jesse Dangerously — shirtless


I have so many amaz­ing mem­o­ries of these songs, back before the album was released and I was doing backup ukulele parts for a few of his acoustic sets. That was when I was just start­ing to get into play­ing an instru­ment again, except this time it was in my adult­hood and it was for reals. He gave me a draft of the album last year when all the ideas were there but he had yet to decide on how some of them were going to be exe­cuted, so it’s very sat­is­fy­ing to hear how pol­ished and com­plete it is now.

There were a bunch of shots we did but didn’t end using, and they were all really fun to do.

Pictures more bril­liant than humble

  1. Proper pro­nun­ci­a­tion has the empha­sis on the last syl­la­ble of “Brilliant”. []

go on

I had a fever dream one night. When I woke up, every­thing was clear. I finally snapped back to real­ity. Thank fuck.

Hitting rock bot­tom was the only way for me to gain some per­spec­tive. When you’re at the edge, you tend to get a bet­ter look at your­self. Now my recov­ery is as mete­oric as my fall. To be hon­est, I don’t know if I’m any stronger or bet­ter for it. If I ever end up in the same sit­u­a­tion again one day, will I be able to han­dle it bet­ter? For some rea­son, I don’t think so. All I know is that I held on, I’m strong enough to go on, and I had to fig­ure it out by myself.

Ryan at two


My music has been a mix of stuff lately, gen­er­ally warm and chill, and most of it being too per­sonal for me to post here. Or maybe I’m just being greedy. By a stroke of luck, I found this song after two years of scour­ing every pos­si­ble music venue (I even had my card out, ready to buy it on iTunes, but they aren’t pop­u­lar enough to be on there). I almost cried when I heard it for the first time at 320kbps.

I’m lean­ing towards the pur­chase of a clas­si­cal gui­tar (as opposed to a steel-string one). I’m sure it’s because Cohen always used a nylon-stringed gui­tar in his early albums, and this has influ­enced my palate to pre­fer a rounder, mel­low sound. Even though this deci­sion will be in the far future, I can’t help but lis­ten to as many clas­si­cal gui­tarists as pos­si­ble to see what kind of tone they can muster from their strings. Unfortunately, it’s really rare to find con­tem­po­rary music (the only genre I’m inter­ested in play­ing) being per­formed on a clas­si­cal gui­tar, unless it’s a gim­mick tune like the theme for Super Mario Bros.

The weather is turn­ing lovely the only way Autumn can, as crisp as it is fleeting.

I have so many ideas going through my head, and I wish I could fol­low through on all of them. Or give up writing/photography/cinematography/web design/music and focus on one at a time. But I always get bored of a medium, or feel the need express myself with a par­tic­u­lar one because it may bet­ter lend itself to being a voice in a cer­tain situation.


A few snaps of Jeff and Darren from a quick shoot last night. I never real­ized how much I need my new 70–200mm lens after get­ting a full-frame cam­era; 70mm is much too short, even in my small stu­dio room.

It’s strange to see so much nat­ural vignetting. I’m not sure if it’s the lens or the way the light falls off when spread across the back­ground from one direction.

Jeff in hat


Continue read­ing “peacock”…

Aaron and Ryan: Portrait Test

Thumbnail: Aaron and Ryan portrait

Thumbnail: Aaron and Ryan portrait

Aaron came over with Ryan for break­fast one morn­ing, and it gave me a chance to use them as mod­els to try some of the tech­niques I learned from Sid when I was in New Hampshire. I still had to do some work in Photoshop to keep the mid­point where I wanted, but it was still quite min­i­mal com­pared to my work with colour lately. This type of por­trai­ture is very dif­fer­ent from what I nor­mally do, where instead of using an out-of-focus back­ground to make the sub­ject stand out, I’m using the con­trast of light.

I turned on Chicken Run to keep Ryan occu­pied while we ate, and Aaron kept get­ting dis­tracted by it as much as he did. For a moment, I couldn’t tell if it was the son who took after the father, or vice versa.