I haven't been posting on here for a few months after spending some time traveling this summer I felt it was more important to write in a journal rather as quickly as possible without worrying about grammar or writing errors. There is something freeing about just getting your thoughts down no matter how random they are and thats all I really did. This past summer flew by but it was a very slow summer for me as far as creating my personal work. I traveled the US for 30 days alone and with the time constraints and amount of driving I had to do it left me with little time to create and an ungodly amount of time to think. I realized so much this summer. Like what scares me the most is what I should be doing, that I am not getting younger, and the risks I desperately desire to take should be taken NOW. That NOW is the only right time to get anything done, and that done is always better than perfect. All this thought and on this trip and all the time to just drive and think made me miss one place...New York. After seeing most of this country, I only have 3 states left (Idaho, Montana, North Dakota) I have only grown more in love with New York. It's a city full of transplants and locals fighting to live here, to meet people, and to create a life of their own. There's no backyards, its crammed, smelly and dirty, but it's home. Whatever you put into this city it gives it right back to you ten fold. Traveling exposes your loves, and your hates and it's the best way to find your home. Get going.
People should want to help other people. It's human nature. Were better together than we are apart. So it always baffles me when talented people become hyper insecure. As if people are trying to take their job. For example I love taking photos and there are photographers I really look up to. At times I have sought some of them out for advice, only the ones I know on a first name basis of course and all but one have been nice. It's like this one guy has a vendetta against me for no reason when I admire his work and respect his opinion, yet he some how finds a way to be a dick. It's clear he has some insecurity issues but none the less a good friend of mine helped me immensely with this situation. This may be obvious but kindness is the only answer. Whether it's a little kid asking you what camera you use or a celebrity asking for your opinion treat them both the same. Give insight to everyone because only the people serious enough to work their balls off will take your advice, and on top of that will will probably respect you enough not to come steal your job. We've all felt insecure when someone is hot on our tale with the skills they have obtained but I believe that if we work together with that person we can both push ourselves to the next level. There are no magic bullets to success, so no one needs to act like they hold the secret key.
Sometimes it just feels good to be alone.
I think what makes this photo great is that it needs no explanation. We can all relate to bad luck, like your stubbing your toe on your way to grab your breakfast except your still alive and didn't have to suffer for days on end in the desert heat stuck in a cattle guard. Yeah bad luck sucks but it happens to all of us.
Back in Ct after 30 days on the road.
I spent some time on the road in this country, seen and met a lot of people. The later more important.
The most prevailing observation from city to town in every state, community is no longer.
There remains some small communities but gone are the days of small mom and pop shops and small businesses. The people have voted they'd like the same Dunkin coffee and the same subway sandwiches in every state regardless of how shitty they are, variation is the enemy. We have the expectations of the perfect sandwich at all times yet we ignore that the ingredients of our sandwiches rely so heavily on the seasons and time yet we rush these things in exchange for profit then we wonder why we have some of the highest cancer rates in the world. Not all tomatoes ripen at the same time, care about your community support local small businesses and in return they will take care of you.
I can promise you, that the corporations you buy from will never give a cent back to you or value your endless years of support like a small business will.
NYC to Niagara Falls
Day 1 of my Summer 17 Road trip.
Stood atop of Niagara Falls yesterday around sunset on the American side.
Compared to Dettifoss in Iceland it is much bigger which really blew my mind. This was the largest waterfalls I have ever seen but the view from the American side wasn't the best because your essentially looking over the edge of a cliff behind a railing 20ft from the edge. Not exactly my style lol I'd much prefer to be sitting on the edge. That is literally the only complaint I could have about Niagara falls because it is an astonishing wonder to witness. It is a must see if you leave on the East coast of America where tall mountain ranges and natural wonders aren't really anything compared to the West coast. Not to mention it was very inexpensive, only $10 dollars to park for a whole day. Although I only spent 2 hours there because I opted for the 2 hour $6 dollar street parking. If you haven't seen Niagara Falls I suggest taking a weekend trip this summer.
P.s. If you Leave after sunset Canadian sand flies line the edge of the rivers in swarms that look like clouds of black smoke. I hit about 10 million of them on the highway...
I love this place.
Busy is a bullshit word we use as a crutch. I haven't just been busy lately I have been swamped shooting lookbooks and working manual labor, one to do what I love an the other to pay the bills. I'd love to hop right into a full time photography position with a clothing company right now but it's not something so readily available. The state of photography has never been better making it a hyper competitive job space. Most people my age graduate with a degree and enter a work force with thousands of job positions available in their state. For an aspiring clothing brand photographer in Connecticut your looking at about 3 jobs if that. There doesn't seem to be much of an art scene here or much of a makers movement that I have felt in many other cities like Nashville, La, Richmond Virginia etc. After heading to Portland, Maine to shoot a lookbook for PfFlyers and Badlands Brand this past weekend I realized that this small North East City is keeping American quality alive. There was no shortage of art in Portland and no shortage or clam chowder. The old seaport town was lined with renovated brick factories and fine gastropubs sourcing their foods with locally grown ingredients. The weather was harsh but no one their seemed to bat an eyelash at it, they just went about their days. On our 3 day trip to Portland, Maine we met people working, saw lobster boats, saw bird watchers and hikers and for the most part people were just busy they were moving with a purpose. For something so close to Connecticut it felt so far away and it was refreshing to see.
My Fathers Killer
Never in a million years did I expect to stare through the eyes of the man that killed my father. I'm 24 years old the same age as the defendant when he committed his crime and it blows my mind to think that someone at my age could have such a disregard for human life. My dad was never afraid of anyone neither am I and there was no better feeling than staring this fucker in the face and telling him how amazing life is when it is lived right. Thankfully my mother never complained a day in her life and she made me realize how simple life is....respect people, work your fucking balls off, and have fun. It's really that simple. Death for murders would be a sound too sweet for their own ears, it would be a returning to their mothers womb but living with regret is the hardest pill to swallow. I don't prefer murders to die I prefer them to change, many won't so until then enjoy your unlimited supply of baloney in prison.
A lot of people think it's all play and no work. That I just get to shoot all day long everyday but it's a struggle. To afford to live and eat and to afford to search for hours for little places like this. Manual labor sucks for the most part but it has taught me so much about the years people put in without ever bitching, they're just happy to have jobs that they can support their families with. I'd like to live a simple life as some do but I can't get rid of this sense of urgency that pushes me to shoot everyday after work when I'm tired as fuck and all I want to do is nap. If you want something you gotta fight for it. Show up to work everyday and hopefully one day soon it will lead me to being on the road full time.
Photography has been a marathon of growth for me. Shooting so many different styles so often and trying to pin point one that works best for me has been no easy task. Then after realizing how much I loved my taking photos I began making a slow transition into freelancing entirely which has brought up more challenges and learning curves than I ever thought I would be able to handle. I still don't think I've found my niche within photography but I am sure of one thing "Rome wasn't built in a Day" but it was built everyday. So for me no matter what happens if I make it or if I don't, or whatever making it even means is different for everyone. Regardless of the end result I am showing up everyday to work and to take photos everyday. There's still so much to be done and so much fun to be had.
Sample Photos for Narragansett Brewery's Spring Line
I swear I'm working.
Just documenting not creating.
It seems to me that when you are young your eyes are nearsighted and only as you age do you look for the longevity in your decisions, yet I am still diving in head first.
Somethings in life are a mess but when you stop trying to clean them up and learn to just enjoy them they seem to work themselves out. Appreciate your mess and it'll fix itself.
All photos Edited with VSCO app on iphone 6s.
Small town blues today.
March 1st 2017
Some days we try for hours but never seem to get it right.
Today was one of those days.
New Instagram feature.
Today some international friends, photographers, and videographers contacted me about the new Instagram feature. If you haven't seen it update your phone because you now have the ability to post multiple photos at once. A lot of the people that contacted me about this feature were apprehensive or hesitant about this. I on the other hand love this feature. It is 1 another way for me to practice visual story telling which is something that goes so strongly with writing which I love to do but at times I don't like to write a lot when I am posting just one photo by itself.
The important part here is that we are going to be seeing the next generation of visual story tellers it may be good or bad for the photo industry or it may spike the demand for content so high that every business will need photographers (wishful thinking)
Either way I think Instagram has done an amazing job by constantly reinventing their platform and staying relevant to the times. With this new update I think they have solidified there user base for years to come. Start telling stories people no matter what you do storytelling is at the heart of communication and entertainment.
Its been a little while since I have been posting blogs. I have since moved home to Connecticut and most importantly I am trying to establish a different routine from the last time I was home. The last time I lived in CT it was the summer I was working 3 jobs, construction, Granite countertop installation and fabricating, and stump grinding. All of these were manual labor jobs I would work 2 jobs every day and then once I was out of work I would hike and take photos for about an hour or 2. Any days I had freelance photography jobs I would take off from work.
In that time I swore to myself that I wouldn't go to any Connecticut bars all summer and I didn't instead I saved my money so that I could road trip the US. With my extra time I took more photos for more brands and eventually landed a beer sponsorship from Narragansett Brewery so I wouldn't waste money on alcohol. Now being home this time I am trying to do something similar by not going to bars, waking up early, and running. I am really missing the social aspect of living in New York which is making it harder not to go out. Especially in the winter when a lot more of my time is spent inside then I prefer. The other thing I have been doing is waking up at 5:30 every morning on week days and it feels amazing but that goal was too easy after a few weeks I needed something more, which leads my to why I am writing this blog. Waking up at 5:30 isn't difficult but figuring out what to do with yourself once you wake up that early is the hard part. If I sit down and blog or write I will be too tired and I will go back to sleep. So I started ending my morning showers with a 30 seconds of cold water....felt amazing but didn't make me any more productive. With all my extra energy and nothing to do with it I decided to start running as soon as I wake up. I am on day 4 as of now running 4.2 miles on the road starting at 5:45 to about 6:20. (Yes I am sore as balls) Sorry Mom. So far it has been amazing for my mental health. Even just in 4 days of running with no music I am getting into deeper thought much earlier than I normally would and I like that. Just for the record I am not a runner and I never have been, and for the runners I do know 4.2 miles is a joke. None the less its a habit I would love to form so I am going to keep going. Cheers.