MorningPortrait #20 – August 29, 2013

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A stop by the old weekend, skateboarding, stomping grounds.

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MorningPortrait #19 – August 28, 2013

MorningPortrait #19 - August 28, 2013

Yeaaahhh … definitely cheated on this one, not a stranger but my beautiful girlfriend Kyla! The stars aligned, the moon was blue, and we miraculously had a day off together. She is also a temporary railroader pursuing the creative life, so her schedule being equally as hectic as mine, makes shared days off few and far between.

Out for coffee and after careful seat selection we were sitting in the best coffee light available. Big window light right, acting as key, and bouncing off the neighbor table adding a little warmth from below. Hair light coming from the window in back, also working double time, bouncing off the wall as fill. After catching this I decided I liked it too much to not use, and wouldn’t bother stalking a stranger before the harsh mid day light set in. Can you blame me? 😉

Oh, and be sure to check out Kyla’s blog, Riding on Rail Cars – Slave to an Age-Old Trade.

Friends … I am back.

And here is an incredible short film I found on facebook stream via friend Will Christiansen, animator extraordinaire and fellow photographer, check out his work >here and >here, the man has skills.

Film by Anthony Cerniello, be sure to check out the work on his >site. Anthony also has skills.

To all worried I had died in a tragic pogo-sticking accident, or something equally likely, I apologize. More MorningPortraits coming soon!

MorningPortrait #18 – August 26, 2013

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After being shut down a record number of times since starting this project, I ran into the “Ice Cold Ryders” the motorcycle gang that has a club house right below my apartment. Going against the biker gang stereotype, they all seem to be super nice guys, and more than one was happy to help me out. Out of the couple guys I shot this was my favorite one …. yeah, even with the sloppy framing.

MorningPortrait #16 – August 24, 2013

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This one was almost too easy. I walked out the door of the coffee shop I frequent in Williston while working on the blog, and this gentleman here, happens to be sitting on the bench right outside the door. I popped off my lens cap, said hello, and even tricked him into looking at the blog on his phone as I set up the shot, two birds with one stone.

New project a brewin – extended.

Here it is!!! dun dundunnnnnnnnnnn. …. a day later than promised :/

MorningPortraits, the idea evolved (8 months later) from a pitiful failure of a New Years resolution, which entailed setting up the strobes, and umbrellas to light a portrait every day. Not having a studio to keep everything ready to go in posed a challenge I couldn’t find the time to conquer.

Still wanting to do something to push my lighting skills forward and being in Williston, a town literally overflowing with people, the place was built to accommodate 12,000 it has ballooned to apprx. 50,000, according to the people that make such estimates. Among the newcomers, I dare to suspect, I am not the only determined dreamer, called here by the opportunity to engineer a bridge to higher ground.

So, after shooting my friend at the Amtrak station who just got in from California, and not hearing enough of his story I decided that it is a must for to properly meet some of these strangers around here and find the time to hear their story fully and hopefully make a good photo to go with the story.

The idea of taking on more right now is definitely daunting, considering I have yet to take todays MorningPortrait, which at the moment has to be shot in the evening due to yet another new schedule, and the above three paragraphs just took me a good half hour to write or better because, #1 -My brain is currently fried, I have yet to sleep after working 10pm to 10am, (which I will be doing again in 8 hours) and #2. I never paid any attention in English class, so every comma I place is a decision based entirely on intuition, which seems to work well enough, but it definitely makes for PLENTY of revising.

With that we will will see what is to come I guess.

now.sleep.

Morning Portrait #12 – August 20th, 2013

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So here in Williston I am staying in a hotel that practically shares a parking lot with wal-mart, which is a pretty awesome for the project. There’s always healthy potential for stranger nagging plus you can find all walks here, more so than your average wal-mart due to Williston’s lack of all things outside of the oil industry, it’s great.

On the other side of the truck stand my initial targets who, in a finish each others’ sentences fashion, declined my request and simultaneously pawned the duty on this guy, by saying, ‘Nahhh you don’t want our photo, we don’t look good for photos,’ as they, in a nervous tough guy way, readjusted their hats and pushed at their hair. “but hey! He pays a hundred bucks for a pair of jeans, go take his photo.” Funny, I thought, jabbing at him for his supposed vanity as they were too worried about their appearance to have a photo taken.

I have actually been surprised a few times now by gruff looking oil workers  who don’t want their photo taken because they are in their dirty work clothes, but have suggested it would be fine if they weren’t just getting off work and maybe had a chance to shower.