Hugh Brodie’s Birthday Party

To all the Ships at Sea,

© Joe DiMaggio

I’m the luckiest guy in the world.  I have great friends all over the world from all walks of life! One of my older friends is Hugh Brodie who is a great musician, singer, writer, and plays one helluva Sax.  The hell with rock and roll.  The women all love him!

Brodie was dealt a bad hand.  His last visit to the hospital the Dr. gave him less than 6 months.  That was 18 months ago. The last time we visited Brodie he didn’t look good. Much to my surprise, for his Birthday celebration he not only looked great but sounded great. It may not have been Carnegie Hall but it was fabulous to have been there.

Brother Brodie we will always love you!  Here’s a short clip from the day https://vimeo.com/204043097

 

 

 

© JoAnne Kalish

Hugh Brodie © Joe DiMaggio

Wow! This Really Blows Me Away

© Michael Hartnett

© Michael Hartnett

To all the ships at sea, last week ranged from brutal to inconceivable, and back to brutal cubed. I was suffering from negativity, which was probably my doing because I allow things to bother me. Well, enough of that. A young man showed up on our doorstep with a number 2 pencil and a tape recorder and interviewed JoAnne and myself. Separately, as a matter of fact, which I thought was a pretty innovative way of doing it (“no white lies, you’ll get caught!”). There’s something about a consummate professional; there’s an aura about them. In my experience, they’re bright, intelligent, soft spoken, and honest. I’m talking about Michael Hartnett. I normally have some minor defense mechanisms in place, but Michael was able to have me drop them in about ten seconds. Great interviewer, again I was totally impressed. We talked a little bit about some of his art and he showed me this beautiful illustration with which I fell in love. Then he explained that he makes them in the woods. Makes a record photograph and within hours it disappears. The initial concept threw me for a loop. You mean I can’t take it home? I can’t put it on my wall? It’s not archival? It’s here today, gone tomorrow? Then I gave it a little bit more thought and realized how brilliant it is. Just like us; here today, gone tomorrow. He’s written a novel called Tales of Allamucha; expect to see it on Amazon in the upcoming future. What a breath of fresh air! This is Joe DiMaggio signing off. PS, he was writing an article on JoAnne and myself for The Milford Journal. Check out the July issue.

 

You Can’t Make This Up

© Joe DiMaggio

© Joe DiMaggio

“I hate artist’s statements. They are pretentious, and I am pretentious enough without adding to it. I have read too many statements about artists who are “exploring psycho/sexual boundaries” or artists who are “Concerned with the tension between x and y…” These statements are more for the artists, to convince themselves that they are creating something meaningful and of value. I reality you buy art because it connects with you, or it matches your couch, not because the artist was “depicting the hypocrisy of gender roles in a post modern America”. I am much more interested to hear what you think about my work, then to tell you what I think about it.”

Thann Clark

There are very few things that motivate me to the point of screaming, jumping up and down, or possibly wetting myself. I was introduced to a young man by the name of Thann Clark and I went to his webpage. What you’ve read above is his artist’s statement.  I am totally blessed that most of my friends are artists, whether  they use oil, water, pen, pencil, cameras, blues, jazz, poetry, or ballet; they’re all artists. I strongly recommend to Thann that he should get his statement copyrighted and trademarked, because if he doesn’t, I’m going to steal it. This artists statement could go on from here to infinity. I’m throwing a photo in here just because I want to. Just for people to keep records, the above gorilla photograph was the number one selling greeting card for over two years. Canon EOS, 600 f4, 1/100th at f4, ISO 100, Gitzo monopod.

Photography is Magic

NL - April13-1

© Ann Raine

To all the ships at sea,

On one level, if photography is magic then Ann Raine was Houdini. She put forth an unbelievable effort in everything that she did, and she reinvented herself on at least five occasions. We had very long discussions on where she wanted to go photographically, and in many ways I encouraged her with all my heart and soul. That was on the right hand; on the left hand I explained to her that the overall perception of photography was losing some of its magical powers. With the advent of digital, the image became a little too easy and a little too common. Having said that, the cream always comes to the top, and Ann was on the top and in many ways still is. Both JoAnne and I think of her all the time. There’s no doubt that she’s no longer in this consciousness but she has progressed and moved on to a finer one. Her great work will always be here; it will be archival in the truest sense of the word and last to infinity. The next time I see you, you are going to have to lead me on your workshop.

Please see the beautiful tribute from Warren Rosenberg.

To all the ships at sea, health and happiness

Joe DiMaggio

NL - April13-2

Easy to Destroy, Difficult to Build

Hi to all the Ships at Sea,

When you slip a CF card into a digital camera, you plan on going out to make a great photograph and that’s a great motivator.  Question remains, can we do it? The answer is, yes, we can. There’s truly only one judge of YOUR photography that counts, and that’s YOU. If you can satisfy yourself and you’re happy then you’ve accomplished what you set out to do and no one, I mean no one, can tell you different. We have had thousands of people, that we’ve taught in our workshops, lectures, Photowalks,  and the majority of them want to be critiqued. The simple fact of the matter is, it’s the most difficult thing in the world to do. Here’s my analogy: Imagine standing on a sidewalk, holding a beautiful piece of Murano Glass, and you pick it up and smash it onto the cement. I’m not sure I could do it, but there’s no doubt that it can be done. You look down and there are thousands of shards of colored glass in hundreds of different angles and pieces. My question is, how many of us, could make that piece of Murano Glass?  The simple answer is, there are only a small amount of artists in the world that could make it. They take 20, 30, 40 years to perfect their art and their trade. By now you’re asking yourself a question, what the hell does this have to do with photography? That’s also simple, go out, perfect your style, make it YOURS. Put your heart, soul and passion into it. Don’t let anybody, smash it on the sidewalk.

Did anyone slip me serious pills this week?

©Joe DiMaggio

©Joe DiMaggio

All the Best,
Joe D

You can now follow me on Twitter @dimaggio_photo
Visual Impressions with Joe DiMaggio, Sponsored by Adorama
www.adorama.com
Adorama Learning Center

Wheeler The Great

Image

I’ve started many lectures, workshops, TV shows, radio shows, and magazine articles, with similar words; I’m the luckiest man in the world. My life is full of extremely creative, intelligent, and dynamic artists. One day it may be a blues musician; another day it may be a jazz man; the following week, a world class athlete; a retired boxer; or an author who has actually changed the world. This weekend, it was Dennis Wheeler; one of the finest artists in the United States today. Wheeler’s career has spanned six decades, he’s responsible for 45 Time Magazine covers, his work appears in the permanent collection of the Museum of Modern Art, all of his children are extremely bright and creative, and he’s married to an adorable young lady named Kathi Doolan. Dennis was kind and generous enough to allow me to bring an elite group of advanced photographers to the Wheeler farm in Columbia County, New York. Unbeknownst to me, the timing could not have been perfect (Murphy had left the building). Wheeler, his son Dave, and Kathi launched the Atlantis for the Floatable piece of art. I believe, and I could be wrong, it is a 1/16,000 scale of a futuristic and green city of the future; right out of Buckminster Fuller. When built full size, it will be around 2,654 feet tall and house 30,000 people, with schools, shops, and a landing strip which will allow you to land and take off a 737. A dream; maybe. But sometimes dreams can become reality; remember Buck Rogers?

Image

Image

Image

Atlantis 4, full size will be 265 stories and 2,654 feet

Image

Image

Image

Image

Image

Image

Image

http://lindapedersenphotography.zenfolio.com/p405196090

To all the ships at sea, I will return to this blog and caption the photographs. The people in the photographs know who they are. I have to leave for Manhattan for a meeting, and will try to get back to it in a day or so. In my opinion, this was one great workshop.

paPA ArtSpace

About 10 years ago I had a amateur photographer ask me to accompany him to a framer’s shop in a small town in PA. He had to pick up some large pieces. We pulled up to what appeared to be a huge Brooklyn New York Factory. Suffice to say it was overwhelming. We walked up a couple flights of stairs, I looked around and there was an awful lot of space. He returned home, I went back to the studio and figured I’d never see that space again and you know what I was right. I will never see that space again.
Yesterday my partner JoAnne and I took a ride to see paPA. As it turns out it’s the same factory, whoops, no not the same! Both Ron & Yvonne Parker have taken a turn-of-the-century Silk Mill and made it into an absolutely magnificent gallery space. Oops not a gallery space but an ArtSpace. From ceiling to floor it’s drop dead fabulous! It’s drenched in beautiful available light and when the available light starts to diminish their spotlights take over. If it was empty and did not have one piece of artwork it would be amazing.  But once you add the eclectic artwork, you as the visitor take a voyage to a different time and place.
Both Ron & Yvonne are thinking way outside the box. They’ve subdivided their 33,000 square feet into three separate spaces and that’s just the first floor.  You can envision an artist’s loft in the second space which could house at least a dozen different artists all working at the same time. Actually upwards of 20 if they wanted to.The third space you could envision as an art space for music, poetry readings etc. You could put anything in there. Then there’s a space, let’s call it the boiler room that would make a perfect theatre for multi-media shows and films. The acoustics are really great. All of this on the first floor.  I will let Ron and Yvonne tell you about the rest. The outside area is large enough to put together anything from an outdoor concert to a open air art show similar to the shows in Greenwich Village. Granted it’s not around the corner but it is more than well worth a visit.  I can’t wait to see what it will look like next year. They’ll probably utilize More’s Law… They have a special opening next Saturday “Yvonne Parker and Friends” July 16
 Their website is  http://www.papa18473.com

IT’S HOLIDAY TIME AGAIN!

Artist/Photographer Gary Nicamin 
Every time the Holidays come around I tend to get melancholy. You think of old friends, old times, and of singing Auld Lang Syne. I think of the good old days. A psychologist friend of mine tells me it’s normal.  I was working with a new intern today and noticed he was removing some digital dust from a photograph of a dear friend of mine, who passed away. My friend’s name was Gary Nicamin. He lived in Hollywood, Los Angeles While I’m feeling in the mood, let me tell you about Gary.  He was one hell of an amazing artist. I met Gary in 1970 and he was the photographer for Chicago, The Beach Boys, Blood Sweat and Tears, and The Turtles. He photographed all of the great sixties and seventies bands. He was also a full blown art director and master of cut and paste. When I had an artistic technical problem I always went to Gary. He also could answer any rock and roll trivia question you could think of.  Gary wore a long Raccoon coat, drove a car that was originally a taxi, and had a penchant for colorful bowling shoes (he had a closet full) which he wore all the time.  At a time when everybody seemed to be stoned on something, Gary NEVER drank or did any type of recreational or prescription drugs.  His only drug of choice was Pepsi Cola. When he wanted to get really high he would eat a chocolate chip cookie. I could spend a long time telling you stories about Gary. So for purposes of this blog we’ll call this Gary Episode One.
Here’s the story behind the photo; It was approximately a little after 5 AM in the morning. Gary was in his bedroom and I was sleeping on the couch in his studio. I always stayed with Gary whenever I was on assignment in L.A., and in those days it was at least several times a year – usually more. Anyway, I heard sirens screaming, so I got up looked out the window and it seemed like the building next door was on fire. I ran into Gary’s bedroom – he was sitting there reading the LA times and watching the local news. I said “Gary I think the building next door is on fire.” He said”calm down it’s an abandoned building that is being used as a crack house.”  He non-chalently, mentioned that it caught on fire frequently.  He led me to the window and we climbed through to get a better view.  I obviously took the opportunity to make this environmental portrait of Gary. Notice the bowling shoes, one of his trade marks. I loved Gary and I sure as hell miss him. A true renaissance man.

-Joe DiMaggio