Fun #4

© Joe DiMaggio

© Joe DiMaggio

To all the ships at sea,

I stopped by a yard sale last year and this old, red coffee can caught my eye. I put it near the studio outside, looked at it all winter, looked at it all spring until a couple of weeds decided to start growing in it. JoAnne walked past the can and saw these beautiful green weeds growing and thought she’d help me out by pulling them out. So much for green and red! I thought something was there- the red really caught my eye. A branch fell down next to it.The branch came from heaven. (If you don’t believe in heaven, I guess it came from the sky… and if you don’t believe in the sky then you’re going to fail Star Trek 1 – the TV show not the movie!)  I picked it up, stuck it inside, took it to the studio, took three frames and then my phone rang. The next day I looked at the frames. I’m not complaining, I’m just explaining! I’m having fun! It will not be entered in the NPPA year-end contest. Then again, I’m no longer a member of the National Press Photographers Association. Wow, now that I said that maybe I should send in my dues…

Fun #2

© Joe DiMaggio

© Joe DiMaggio

To all the ships at sea,

On August 20th, I did a blog about fun. And to be quite honest, it was a short, concise, and to the point blog. Unfortunately, I think that I did not accomplish what I really wanted to accomplish.

I would imagine that most people that are going to read my blog do not have the power to control the stock market, United States government (or any government for that matter), and certainly not the weather. You come to realize that there is very little that we as human beings can really control, apart from trying to control our own destiny. I believe one of Frank Sinatra’s lyrics goes, “If you can make it in New York, you can make it anywhere,” and both JoAnne and I have been competing in the New York marketplace for over four decades. Okay, maybe five decades. Sometimes we get so wrapped up in what a client needs, what an art buyer needs, what a gallery owner needs, and so wrapped up in the stress and the pressure that both society and ourselves put on us, and so wrapped up in the competition with our peer group that at the end of the day we’re drained.

So, what’s wrong with this picture? In retrospect, everything is wrong with this picture. The time has come to take the years of experience as a working photographer and just. Have. Fun. Have fun with whatever camera you use, whatever lens you use, any place that you go to make a photograph. You dont have to go to Beijing or Venice – you can go three blocks from home. You can go in your own backyard and generate great photos just for the fun of it! No stress, no pressure. Unadulterated fun. If you come to our studio or to the learning center, you’ll have an opportunity to  see and go into the private suite, which was originally supposed to be a VIP suite to have a cigar and some brandy, listen to some great music, and just kick back. It was a good idea, but I don’t smoke cigars and I don’t need an excuse to drink brandy. It’s been converted into a place to store some of our archival work. When I look at the work that was printed in the 70s, whether they are a dye transfer or a great c-print, the cost of each one of the 16x20s or the 20x24s were in excess of $400-$1,100 per print. Suffice it to say, we’re talking absolute telephone numbers.

Okay, where am I going with this?  There’s nothing like the excitement and the fun of going out and generating a photograph, looking at the back of the LCD screen, and loving what you see then putting it into your computer and it comes alive. The next logical step is to make a display print. I seriously recommend a large print. It’s the final step in the photographic process. I had the pleasure to watch Eisenstaedt spend a half an hour in the Life lab making three or four work prints before he’d make his final print to send to the editors at Life Magazine. It was a thing of beauty. And with the red light glancing off of his eyes, you could see he was having fun! There are few of us that still have the ability and wherewithal to go into a wet dark room.

To all the ships at sea, please have fun, fun, and some more fun. Life is too short. Go out and have some fun. The camera will bring you a tremendous amount of satisfaction and pleasure. And fun!

Joe D.

© Joe DiMaggio

© Joe DiMaggio

© Joe DiMaggio

© Joe DiMaggio

© Joe DiMaggio

© Joe DiMaggio

A Desk or a Dove?

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To all the ships at sea,

As a photographer, whether professional or amateur, the one thing you must always be aware of is if you see something you have to be able to move not only quickly but decisively and know your exposures, focal length, horizontal or vertical, and be able to execute or else you’re not going to make the photograph. I just finished my fourth coat of polyurethane on my new desktop and as I left my workshop I saw a dove sitting thirty yards away. Yesterday, I saw a bald eagle twenty yards away but by the time I got the camera, switched the lenses, put the card in and changed the ISO he or she was gone. So I left the camera set up the way I had it and it actually worked for me. I went out and took a few horizontals, loose, with the Canon 7D mark ll and the 100-400 zoom. For all intents and purposes, I think I nailed it. No assignment, no money, no sales- oh, it’s just fun! And a beautiful bird. If you look closely at the bird’s foot, you’ll see the superglue I used to hold the bird to the glass. The last thing you want is to have the bird fly away… IT’S A JOKE!

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Photography Should Be Fun

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© Joe DiMaggio

As a working photographer for quite a while, you tend to forget what it’s really all about: meeting beautiful girls, having cappuccino at one o’clock in the afternoon, and having some serious fun. Unless you’re hanging out with Mike Phillips, then you’re going to be drinking cheap white wine at one o’clock in the afternoon. It doesn’t make you a bad person. Ernst Haas pioneered time motion studies while I was still in my mother’s womb. I’ve always had an utmost respect for him as a photographer and someone who became more “edgy” the older he got. A great photographer and a great tech rep, Ron Thompson called me and commented on a double truck I had in Time magazine of an F-14 Tomcat and told me to check my camera to see if I had a shutter speed any faster than 1/8 of a second. You gotta love motion. To all the ships at sea, go out and make a photograph.

 

Photo Holiday

© Joe DiMaggio

© Joe DiMaggio

To all the ships at sea,

Every once in a while, you just have to take a busman’s holiday. A very dear friend of mine showed up and instead of hanging around the studio all day we decided to take a ride to upstate New York; we passed what appeared to be a very sophisticated junkyard. We pulled in and there were eight signs saying report to the office. The key here is, “Pay attention to the signs and report to the office.” There were several Rottweilers on chains, and to be quite candid, I had no interest in photographing or meeting them. We checked in, asked if we could look around and they said, “Yes. But first we have to weigh you and the car.” We thought it was a little strange but then they explained, “We weigh you on the way in and the way out. You better weigh the same or we’re going to charge you for the extra weight.” I have to tell you, it was just a lot of fun. Keep your options open, you never know when you will come across something. The photos may not cure cancer, but a little bit of fun never hurt anybody.

© Joe DiMaggio

© Joe DiMaggio

© Joe DiMaggio

© Joe DiMaggio

© Joe DiMaggio

© Joe DiMaggio

Fun Photography

Fun photography. Fun photography.

To all the ships at sea,

What have we forgotten?  When did we forget it?  Why did we forget it?  When did photography become so important?  When did photography become fingernails on a chalkboard?  When did it become so critical that we start to tear people apart for no particular reason?  I think it’s time to go backwards, and when we go backwards, we’ll actually go forwards, and we’ll go forwards quite a bit.  I’ve been making photographs for quite a while… and exactly why did I get started in photography?  Ask yourself that question, why did you get started?  I was on a New York set for Lights Out, sitting with some great, great, great photographers;  Kenny Regan from Camera 5, Johnny Iacono from Sports Illustrated, and Al Bello from HBO.  We started to talk about photography and we all kind of giggled and laughed.  We wanted to change the world?  No.. We wanted to show the importance of an image?  No… We wanted to tear down the establishment and build up independent thought?  No…  We wanted to meet girls?  Yep, that’s the reason.  My God we were in our teens, of coarse we wanted to meet girls.  The reality is, we wanted to have fun.  Sometimes we forget why we do things.  I’ve been with the same girl for a long time, so I don’t need to meet girls anymore, but what I really need to do is have fun.  That’s really what it’s all about; and to be quite honest, I think I’ve forgotten it.  I’ve made a promise to myself, I’ve had some of the greatest teachers in the world.  They’ve given me so much to be grateful for.  I need to take all of those tools for the balance I have left on this planet and incorporate it into having fun.  The reality is I’m not going to change the world.  A journalist asked Bob Dylan if he feel like he changed the world with the songs, and did he realize how important his lyrics were.  Dylan looked at the writer and said, “Hey man, I just play music, I play music and I’m not trying to change anything, I’m trying to have fun.”  So if Bob Dylan didn’t change the world, I probably won’t change the world either, so let’s concentrate on having fun.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

wave© Joe DiMaggio

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Ice Spikes ©Joe DiMaggio 6942 copy

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Waterfall Snow Ice 9498 RB

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