Spring is On the Way – Not!

© Joe DiMaggio

To All the Ships At Sea –

You say you don’t believe in global warming. Huh?  We’ve had almost 40 consecutive days of freezing some days minus 10 degrees. What’s the motto – don’t complain about the weather as there is nothing to do about it except for go to Ecuador which I will be doing shortly.

© DiMaggio

 

© DiMaggio

 

 

Tulips and Mias Lips

© Joe DiMaggio

To all the ships at sea,

I usually come home with fresh flowers at least once a week. It’s a luxury that JoAnne and I really enjoy. Well, this week she beat me to it and brought home some beautiful tulips that were very tightly closed. I looked at them and watched Mia, our kitten, who decided to eat one of the tulips- I guess it’s a kitten thing. I decided to move them to another geography. There I saw some backlight and took some photos, then decided to segregate one tulip and make a few more photos. Think of it this way: it’s springtime in January. I normally don’t photograph flowers, but what the hell- I’m having a little bit of fun.

© Joe DiMaggio

© Joe DiMaggio

© Joe DiMaggio

© Joe DiMaggio

Zero Degrees or %@*!!$ Cold!

© Joe DiMaggio

To all the ships at sea,

If you’re anywhere near the East coast, you’ll know that it was beautiful. Then it got cold, then brutally cold, and then the ice came. Well last spring I packaged up all of my winter garb and I put it someplace. Did I write it down in the computer? No. Did i put a label on it? no. Did I put it in the same place? No. I found it, but I found it very, very late. In photography, I’ll tell you “standardization and simplification” – simple, clean, elegant. Also, repeatability. You should be able to go to your insurance shot and as soon as that’s done you should be able to throw caution to the wind and be able to do some crazy fun stuff. Oh yeah you’ve gotta have fun with it. Its all about fun and hopefully generating a new image, or maybe new just for you. New hasn’t been done in 40 years. So when it comes to protecting the cameras, we do that. Or I do it. Make sure they’re all in the trunk so that they’re all the same temp as outside. Tripods, the same thing. Clothes, the same thing. Three, four, five layers. Headgear, eargear, nosegear and gloves. Well, I couldn’t find my stuff so I borrowed some of JoAnne’s scarves and stuff. Not good. The lesson is pretty simple. Repeatability- put it in the same damn place all the time and if you think you’re gonna meed it in January then get it ready in September. Attached are a few photos… yes, I found my stuff. Want to know where it was? The last place I looked! It’s always in the last place I look, think about it.

© Joe DiMaggio; words by Sam Garcia. Where are the two right gloves?

Everybody knows that I’m a Canon photographer, so I very rarely get specific about a camera and a lens. In this particular case I’m going to talk a little but about it, I took out my Canon 5D Mark IV, the 100-400 zoom, a relatively midrange Gitzo carbon fiber tripod, two batteries and two extra cards. That’s it, nothing else other than my trusty cell phone. When climbing on the ice, you really want to have a cell phone with you. What I forgot was that the night before I had a house guest and that he plugged his phone into my charger. Where am I going with this? Well, you know where I’m going with this. It starts to snow and it snows very heavily. I’m not paying attention, I’m just shooting. I’m not making excuses, I’m just explaining. I looked down and the camera was covered in a beautiful coating of white snow and the lens had white snow. It was kind of a pretty picture. Then I looked down to see my itsy bitsy camera bag covered in snow. I reached into my pocket to take a photograph with my iPhone and up popped a thermometer saying “aint gonna happen fella, you dont got enough juice.” It’s one of those snapshots that I have in my brain but not in my other camera- get it? My other camera? I believe an iPhone is a phone, not a camera… other people, not so much. Again, preproduction is the key to a successful shoot. This includes gloves, mittens, scarves, batteries and yes, a cell phone- if I had fallen,  I would  have needed that phone for more than just taking a snapshot of the snow falling down on the camera and  the lens. Don’t leave anything to chance. Remember- Murphy is sitting on a rock waiting for you.

Hope to see you on the road again,

Joe D.

© Joe DiMaggio

 

Young Pup

© Joe DiMaggio

To all the ships at sea,

Back in the day I coined the phrase, “Standardization and simplification,” when it came to photography. Another phrase I coined was, “Shoot it when you see it, because you’ll never go back to photograph it again.” Everything I say is my opinion, not fact- I get it. I was on a Sports Illustrated assignment to photograph the largest white shark that was going to be caught on rod and reel- 3427 pounds (hadn’t been caught yet but they had been fighting it off the coast of Montauk). I had just left a TIME Magazine assignment when a phone call came that told me to go to Montauk. I changed my clothes, my photographic gear, got my foul weather gear and left for the 70 mile drive where I would meet a fishing boat to take me the balance of the 30 miles to get to the fish. Ten minutes after leaving, I realized I left two electronic flash in my darkroom. When it hit me, I lifted my right foot and went to hit the break and said, “No ____ way!” but I kept going. Did I need the flash? Yeah, I think so. Pushed the film anyway, made the photo, and it ran in TIME and accidentally in Newsweek- not my fault. Also the DailyNews and Newsweek. I think somebody syndicated it.

Yesterday, I had a very special appointment in Manhattan. I canceled a shoot to make this appointment. Right before I got to Route 80, I saw a magnificent sunset. (You know what, they’re all magnificent. But this one was special.) I looked to the left, was going 70 mph, looked straight ahead and knew it would be gone in five minutes. I looked and found that there was a turn off for an exit. I hit the brakes, made the turn off, went two blocks and wound up in the parking lot of a bar. No photo. Drove down a very narrow road of very expensive homes; the photo was still up and running but too many trees and homes were in the way. Went another mile down the road, found an opening, got out jumped over a 1 foot fence that said “No trespassing.” I recalibrated the ISO and started to shoot before the first dog came out barking, followed by the second dog barking and doors opening. I went back to car and said, “I knew this was a bad idea..” Drove some more, saw an opening for a PRIVATE YACHT CLUB ENTRY MEMBERS ONLY, but made believe that I didn’t see the sign. I drove another two or three football fields down to the end of this beautiful lake and there was my sunset, waiting for Joe DiMaggio. Also waiting for Joe DiMaggio was a police officer in a shiny new SUV. Did I have my seatbelt on? No. Was it shining? Yes. I made an executive photographic decision and drove past him like I was a member. Got out, recalibrated the ISO and made the photo. First time going back fora photo. Was it worth it? I think so. Maybe old dogs can learn new tricks… woof, woof, woof. Ice photos were thrown in, shot it the day before. Video to follow.

Joe D.

© Joe DiMaggio

© Joe DiMaggio

 

Winter Fun

© Joe DiMaggio

© Joe DiMaggio

To all the ships at sea,

What I strongly recommend at this time of year is an ice breaker. We are rapidly coming up on the winter solstice and the temperature at the falls drops to five below zero at night. It makes for some very beautiful ice designs. Please remember to keep your camera and lenses in an extremely cool place before you take them out in very cold weather when photographing in the wintertime. I recommend transporting the camera and lenses in the trunk of your car, especially if you are driving any distance. This is because you don’t want to know what will happen when your camera transitions from the seventy-eight degree interior of your car to near-freezing temperatures. You won’t need a fog filter, that’s for sure! Common sense is a great ingredient when making a photograph.

© Joe DiMaggio

© Joe DiMaggio

© Joe DiMaggio

© Joe DiMaggio

100 Degrees Fahrenheit, I Don’t Think So

Anyone who knows me knows that I don’t like the cold weather. While working on a short video piece for CBS, I found myself literally in the cold for two days. In reality, it was an awful lot of fun, and the video turned out quite well. While we’re going through this heat wave, I just thought I’d cool you down with some ice photos. Photos were taken with a 5D Mark 2 and a 7D, 100mm 2.8 macro lens, 24/105 zoom and a 10/22 mm f4, a super light Manfrotto video tripod, a Zacuto finder, a Singh-Ray variable neutral density filter, Manfrotto ballhead, and a Sartek underwater light. If you have a few minutes, take a look at my first Adorama TV episode.

Thanks, Joe D.

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H48CJGZXijo&feature=youtu.be]