I have been a photographer for more then twenty years. My serious interest in photography began with a borrowed prewar Rolleiflex and a single roll of 120 film. Here is an image from that first roll. When my wife, choreographer Lisa Townsend and I first met at CalArts in 1992 she asked me to take some images for her MFA thesis concert RoChamBo. She and I and dancer Kate Weare improvised near the pool for an hour on a sunny Los Angeles morning. When some days later I opened the glassine envelope with the big 2 in x 2 in negatives I could see instantly that the images were interesting and contrasty and well exposed. The shapes and shadows that the dancers created piqued my interest and aesthetic.
I began taking a lot of photographs with that old Rollei buying shop prints from Sami’s Photographic along with the negatives. A few years later Lisa and I decided to relocate to NYC driving from Los Angeles and shooting dance pictures the whole way. In them she wore the same dress sometimes with a picture frame from our wall. Here is an image from that tripThis image was shot in the desert outside Reno Nevada at a place I remembered from ,when as a kid ,I had traversed the country with my father. We stopped moments before an afternoon storm descended upon us. I had by then begun using color slide film in addition to B&W.
Upon arriving in New York I knew that I wanted to know lot more about photography (while pursuing a career as a jazz bassist) and so I got a part time job at Village Photo in Greenwich Village on Christopher Street. While selling used cameras and lenses I educated myself in photography shooting on my lunch breaks, sometimes right out the door of the shop. Here are two photos from that period.
After a few years of street shooting in NYC and a lot of Dance photography, and a huge amount of midnight to dawn B&W printing, I began assisting Photographers in the NY area including well known architectural and portrait photographers learning their methods and skills. I began shooting with a Hasselblad super wide camera, a perspective correct (When used as directed) camera that could be tilted for effect. Its sharpness and dimensionality still have me deeply possessed. (in the shot above the buildings slightly mushroom out in an exaggeration of perspective )
I spent a lot of time on the streets of New York City and Brooklyn wandering with my camera photographing. I experimented with all the (mostly extinct) film choices and refined my sense of timing a shot.