Sunday, December 14, 2014

The 5 Day B&W Photo Challenge

Some friends and colleagues have been passing around a photo challenge, to post one black and white image every day for five days. Posted on FaceBook among us, we got to see some work from long ago to some from the present with a brief story of why.

This was one of mine..." Bonding "

 To be a photographer is to be a witness to life, the good and bad it offers. It's not just one event that sums it up but it can be just one picture. This picture had nothing to do with the actual shoot of mother daughter for a series on South Beach. It was a stolen moment while patiently waiting for the cooperation of a little girl, a bonding of parent and child, a trust, that leads hand in hand into an unknown, the first step, hesitant yet confident in her mother's hand.
There's a moment in a photographer's time, that one or two hundredth of a second when you know what you've caught, plays out a lifetime, sometimes theirs, sometimes your own. For me this image brings back many memories of me and my daughter at that time in her life. 

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Another Job...

I went to Catholic school. It was small in size, smaller in thinking but I was a wise guy, so for my sins, my parents sentenced me there. My public school brother took shop, made cool things,worked on cars; I marched through Gaul with Caesar and said the rosary. As a small school it drew large characters from all over the county, some by choice, some by last choice, me…only choice. The teachers, a mix of nuns and laymen formed the base of education…mostly theirs. I learned some things from their school books, which I mostly forgot, but everything from some others whom I still remember.

One, a dynamic physical ed coach was influential on a lot of us, boys that is ( don't get the wrong idea here!) .   it was his philosophy on life that tuck to me. I repeat it every time I fail and it gives me reason to continue. He gave it with your last name first :

                                       "…LaBatts,  ya godda pay the price…"

True words he gave us on one hand.  In the other hand however he carried a golf club that he used like a walking cane and caned the ones that didn't walk the walk. He was a real driver. I liked him deep down. He wasn't parochial, he was a stand up guy. He was also ambitious.

When the northern region of the county built a new regional high school, he got the job as the head coach. When I moved onto a new paper, I got the job to shoot a spread on him. I left one Perry White type editor behind to find another, but a better dressed one. His concern was that I was charging him more than I charged his friend which amounted to nothing really but he had to put on the show. It came with his territory.

" Get me some good stuff this time"…were always his encouraging words and insightful direction. " What's the assignment " I asked, It helps to know at times. They were featuring the new county school and part of it was their new star coach…the golfer and when I heard that, in my mind I shouted…" FOUR!!"

He had a winning football team and still a par swing no doubt..A few years had gone by since my high school but not enough not to recognize him from a distance as I approached him on the filed.  He looked smaller for some reason and very surprised for another. I was glad to see him even though I never played football. He was still the same guy, a great colorful character and after spending a couple of hours photographing him in action, we walked back to his office for the feature shot.

A few more clicked by sitting on his desk, standing in the doorway etc when he asked " Is that it? got it all? "
 " I think so.."  I said turning and stopping next to the famous golf club leaning against the wall…." Hey " I said with an innocent tone " how bout you hold this club for one more shot??? " ( a real pulitzer prize in the making.) He stood up walking towards me… caught in the act  " No ! " Smiling I left quickly…still liked him.

His shoot ran two pages. I never got that Pulitzer…but I'm still  "paying the price".

This one's for you Mr.Scrog