To all the ships at sea, sometimes I just get so tired of throwing the proverbial bull. I find it extremely difficult to talk about my work. Even with my big mouth it ain’t easy! I walked past JoAnne’s half of the studio and caught a glimpse of these four photos. I don’t know where she’s going but they look great. See you on the road, Joe D.
To all the ships at sea, I seem to spend two or three hours at night seeing myself getting on an airline and winding up in Africa, Israel, Northern Italy, Malta, and then the proverbial shit hits the fan and I’m not going anywhere. Please enjoy these three photos.
To all the ships at sea, it seems that we never really appreciate the greatness of people until it’s too late. Ruth Bader Ginsburg is probably up there with the greatest women in the last 100 years. Just barely 5’2″, her power, her strength, her intellect, her caring for her fellow men and women was absolutely gigantic. she broke down barriers and was able to change our society for the better. It may have something to do with the fact that she was born on March 15th. The ides of March, many great women seem to be born on that day. Eva Longoria, Marjorie Merriweather Post, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, and JoAnne Kalish. Many people don’t realize that JoAnne has had many firsts in her illustrious career. First woman hired by Sports Illustrated, first woman allowed in the NHL penalty box, first woman in the pits at the Indianapolis 500, first woman to shoot NFL football, and first woman indoctrinated into the National Hockey League hall of fame (as a photographer). Her work appears in over 50 countries throughout the world. Her iconic photograph of Will Barnett is in the permanent collection of the National Portrait Gallery in Washington, D.C.
To All The Ships At Sea –
Today would have been Peter B. Kaplan’s birthday. Anyone who knew Peter also knew there were 2 Peter B. Kaplans. One was an amazing height photographer who had testicles the size of NYC (I’m deathly afraid of heights but I deal with it.) The other Peter B. Kaplan was a notorious advocate for photographers copyright protection. Peter stood up against SPORTS ILLUSTRATED, TIME MAGAZINE, LIFE MAGAZINE and dozens of advertising clients who impinged on his copyright. This made Peter on one level a serious prick, who was the thorn in many art director and art buyer’s butts. On the other level, he was someone who actually helped other photographers get their fair due whether it be in federal, state court, or in arbitration.
Somewhere around 1974, Peter called me and wanted to borrow a Nikon F, a remote cord, and a 16mm lens. He had seen a photo I had done with a Gitzo monopod and a 14 foot aluminum extension paint roller, which I had used at the Indianapolis 500 to get to places with my camera that you couldn’t get to. I lent Peter the camera, lens, cord and pole and he went out to use it to photograph Lady Liberty’s Torch.
Depending on what side you were on, Peter was a great photographer, or a miserable son-of-a-bitch and always a great advocate for the photographic community. To me Peter was just my friend…
To All The Ships At Sea –
The reason I have JoAnne’s photo on my blog is because it’s a great photo. A day after we both went to a Prayer Vigil. My photos were okay, but JoAnne’s photo, well it speaks for itself. The director of photography Charlie Borst the Acting Director of Corbis Sigma USA , after editing thousands of photos of the tragedy wrote her this note –
Marcel Saba, VP of Editorial Photography, passed along the great photograph
that you’ve shown to Leslie Hughes in some recent correspondence. I must say that from all the pictures I’ve edited of this tragedy, this quickly rises to the top.
As Acting Director of Corbis Sygma USA, I am writing to ask if you would letus syndicate this photograph worldwide.
Again, great work; I’m glad I got to see it!
Corbis Sygma USA
To All The Ships At Sea –
“Tom Terrific” – “The Franchise” and a great guy.
To all the ships at sea, we’ve gone from the week of hell to a wonderful, lovely week. Finally got in for my eye surgery. I now am almost 20/20 in my right eye, and the left eye 20/200 maybe, two fingers only. Still can’t see the “e”. But the doctor says the right one is going to kick ass. I finally had an opportunity to open my pizzeria. It’s a dream I’ve had for many years. I have a magnificent partner, Peter Poremba. I strongly recommend if you’re anywhere near Anchorage Alaska, especially in the winter time , come by and visit DiMaggio’s Pizzeria. The mushrooms and anchovies are fabulous. The week culminated in the wedding of Mark Jacob and Montana. The wedding was held in Water Mill Long Island. Mark was an assistant of mine 18 years ago. The Rabbi who married him was in Jerusalem in the middle of the night who is also my brother. Mark and Montana had definitively the finest after-vow kiss I have ever seen. It was better than any Hollywood kiss, that’s for damn sure.
while doing an edit I stumbled across several photos of the great Ayrton Senna. And here is one of my new paintings, for sale, discount for anyone who reads my blog!
To all the ships at sea,
JoAnne Kalish is always first. It’s a little known fact that JoAnne started work at Sports Illustrated one year before me. She did the first hard cover book six months before me. She did a national billboard two years before me. She shot an NFL football game six months before me. Well yesterday in the middle of our Covid-19 pandemic, JoAnne found out she got the cover of an international french illustration called “L’ceil De La Photographie”. It looks like she beat me again. Which is absolutely wonderful. In our time together I have been asked many questions about our relationship, our business, and if we compete with each other. A writer one time said that JoAnne was an extremely fine woman photographer and I corrected him and said “JoAnne Kalish is an extremely fine photographer“. Photography, writing, art, music, you don’t see gender; just talent. Please take a good look at the PDF, it’s certainly worth it. I took a snapshot of JoAnne and Mario Andretti back in ’74 at indy (I got to indy 3 years before her). I had to get that in. The other photo is JoAnne and I at a get-together. We will be celebrating our anniversary tomorrow. I forgot how many years its been but you can find us at the beach at Sandy hook.
Most people have good days and bad days. You may find it hard to believe but photographers sometimes have good days and bad days too. You may be surprised to find out that photographers on occasion are also people.
I was talking to an anthropologist in Japan and for some reason, I said to him “if I’m lying, I’m dying”. You can’t make this shit up, and if you do you’re gonna burn in hell. That was with no Sake and at 3 AM at the Tokyo fish market. What the hell does this have to do with my blog? Monday, I made two paintings on my homemade easel outside. When I went to clean up my brushes I was stung not once but thrice by wasps. Where you may ask? Somewhere between my groin and my… you already figured it out! Now being a very macho man, I ran into the studio, and screamed to JoAnne “HELP!” and she said “UPS is here” and I said “FUCK UPS” very loud! For the record, it was a new UPS man. I needed large doses of Benadryl and all sorts of homeopathic stuff on the swollen area.
Here comes Tuesday… JoAnne says, “the car won’t start” I go out, and sure enough the car wouldn’t start! I checked the battery, and the car wouldn’t start. We jumped the car, it wouldn’t start. I called my mechanic, and he sends the captain of the Staten Island Ferry to my home with a super special battery charger (a sweet lovely, guy who tried so hard to help Joe D the idiot, keep in mind, I was still in pain.) Two days, later we still couldn’t get the car started, and I decided to go to town in my Subaru. I drove to the top of the driveway and yikes I had no brakes! Let me clarify – NO Brakes, none, nada, zip! I used the emergency brake, and was warned not to drive the car so I parked the Subaru. On Wednesday, I went down and purchased a $220 battery. I came back and installed the battery. Guess what? Still wouldn’t start! My mechanic said I doubt it’s the starter but called the tow truck anyway. On Thursday morning they finally towed the car away. I was told it would be a week because my mechanic was on vacation. Luckily, they got a cancellation, put in a new starter, a negative wire and a new battery. They called and said come pick up your car. Now what car was I going to drive there? Pretty obvious. I’m not gonna take the new car because then I would have to leave it there. So, I took the car without the brakes (keep in mind I am sober for this whole experience.) I drove with the flashers on. A five minute trip took me half an hour. I used the emergency brake to stop. I dropped off the Subaru and picked up the Honda. Now I’m working my way towards the weekend… Did I mention the repair bill was $562, the towing was $127. The Subaru was going to take a week. The swelling is going down but I look like a degenerate because I am unconsciously scratching constantly in a place you shouldn’t scratch (glad my young female assistant didn’t come to work that week.)
The phone rings and it’s Simon Jacob calling from Jerusalem. Simon is a prince of princes. I would never turn Simon down for anything he may need as he’s genuinely one of the most beautiful people I have ever known in my life. He explains that because of Covid-19 I could not attend the wedding in Israel and neither could his son and 7 children in Jersey, but the wedding would be on Zoom. Would I drive to another son’s home and photograph the family prior to the wedding and the answer was of course! I could witness the wedding as well at his son’s home. I got all the details and hung up the phone. In the background the news report came on and I heard we were going get hit with a hurricane the next morning. I got up at 4:00, did my workout routine. Had to drive deep into Jersey and be there by 10. Halfway there, the storm hit, and I literally couldn’t see the road. I pulled over, the right thing to do was to cancel. But this was the week from hell, so I decided I was not going to cancel. I finally arrived, shot everything I needed to shoot, and then excused myself because I certainly knew what was going to happen if I stayed any longer.
Oh I did forget something… a new hobby is growing tomatoes. During the week I had 100,000 chipmunks attack my tomatoes. Okay so maybe I exaggerated a little bit! They only ate 10% of the tomato and left the rest! The rain stopped and I decided to remove all the tomatoes and just eat green tomatoes, whatever was left. I decided to take the remaining tomatoes plants and one tomatillo plant inside my studio instead of trying to kill 100,00 chipmunks!
We are coming down the home stretch here people. Now, I have a horse shoe driveway. I have made the turn in my BMW, my Honda Civic, my Subaru and many other cars over the years. Well, I made this turn and hit a piece of wood. I brought the car to my mechanic and said “you think we could fix this for $350?” he said “yes but I’d need $2,000 more.”Okay the next logical question is, do you believe this? Remember what I said, you’re going to burn in hell! I don’t wanna burn in hell. I got a bottle of Gin and I made a very large Gin and tonic. On my way to the studio, I got stung 4 times by yellow jackets on my deck. The good news is it was on my arms and chest instead of my lower extremities. So I guess things weren’t that bad after all!
You can see the look on my assistant Olivia’s face after writing this, I think she may quit.
Another senior moment… when things go bad and I get angry, upset, ticked off, and pissed off I have 3 options. I can go down to my dock and meditate, I can pour myself three fingers of Bourbon, or I can go shopping. So I decided to go shopping. There was a huge sale on lobster, clams, and spare ribs. So I drove 30 miles to Jersey, loaded the car up, spent about $70 (which I should not have) but I saved $52. It made me feel better. By the time I got home it was 100 degrees, I opened up the refrigerator and it appeared something was really wrong with the refrigerator. I put a thermometer in it and it was 59 degrees. I opened the freezer and that was somewhere in the neighborhood of 50 degrees. I then had to immediately run out and buy 3 bags of ice and put the food on ice. What an end to a week from hell! By the way, in case you didn’t know it, with Covid-19 all the major corporations that make refrigerators, freezers, are on a slow-down and you cannot get anything and when you do get it, it’s at a premium with no selection. Well I got lucky. I found a local repair man and he put me back in business.
Next week should be better, I’m having eye surgery on my right eye. Can’t wait for that!