Struggling here to keep some sort of connection with the goings-on at the homefront, whilst I indulge in the guilty pleasure that is my time in Peru, (which also has one of the most robust economies in South America, in no small part because they have very tight constraints on mortgage procedures), I find myself pondering the uncertain future of yet another major newspaper in San Francisco.
What is the alternative to newspapers? TV News? No thanks. And I must confess no great love for citizen bloggers as a source of current events either. I see them more as op-ed pages, and I am sure there are notable exceptions, for the most part I am not interested in asking them for their opinion. I am one of those curmudgeons that values experience and team playing when it comes to news gathering. It is not a perfect system – but, um, what is?
And so verklempt, I ponder how I can help, aside from subscribing (which I already do too many magazines and two dailies), to make newspapers viable. I would gladly pay a nominal fee to subscribe to content online for a year. Somewhere between $25-50 seems reasonable to me, or for specific content, I would happily pay a $.25-.50 download fee. Since no one is asking me to do this, except for the venerable Wall Street Journal to which I already subscribe (and really prefer reading the object versus the screen, sorry Kindle) I have decided to make the conscious effort to click on those paid advertisements in hopes that it will support the newspapers that I so adore. When you click on those google ads I know it benefits the site, so I hope that the same holds for the other paid ads. And so I say, Click if You Love Your Content, and try to help your newspaper help you.
The first time I won anything it was tickets to see the Bodeans at the 9.30 Club in Washington. A radio station called my home number and I answered (yes, before the dawn of
time cell phones). Total fluke. I’ve won a few things since then, here and there, if honorable mentions were bridesmaids I’ve worn my share of pistachio flouncy dresses until I reached a point where I flat out refused to be a bridesmaid (sorry T!) and then my friends began, er, maturing to the point where they didn’t need to walk down the aisle with a calvacade of candy-colored confections accompanying them. But I digress, as always.
I just wanted to toot ye olde horn and say I won a great prize associated with being at Photo NOLA and being ranked by reviewers and that was a portfolio of my Consumed series on PhotoEye. You like me, you REALLY like me. (Sorry I could not resist. Noone under 35 will understand that quote anyway).
For those of you who don’t get PhotoEye’s newsletter it is a weekly fest of enticement: vintage and recent books, beautiful work from people I am unfamiliar with. But be forewarned, it got my shopping demons hopping, and I was tempted and succumbed. More than once. And PhotoEye if you are listening, I am still waiting for my Martin Chambi! Apurate!
There are many ways to get your work out there, and I feel sometimes that I spend more time disseminating the work then producing it, but sometimes these little gifts come your way and fortify the soul. (Free portfolios and accompanying press releases that make me feel validated) I LONG for the day when I can just produce and produce and it magically goes out there, but I think that day might not arrive, I am certainly not entitled to that. Being a photographer and being able to make a living doing what you LOVE (tho I would be lying if I said I LOVED every assgnment, but that is my point of departure) is such a gift when I see so many other people I know really just working, and not enjoying it so much. Thus one must accept all the naughty bits, because if it wasn’t drudgery than even more people would be photographers and we all know the horror of THAT. So all I can tell you is enjoy the process. Even the part where you are just sitting on your potatoes putting the work out there. You are the best advocate for your work. Be a gracious steward of it. And when it works out for you toot your horn and let me know.
The Day has finally come. Posting may be sporadic as I am dispatched to assignment in never-been Argentina on Friday. Am looking at large horde of fellow passengers queueing for Zone 2 in Miami Airport and I am Afraid.
Like everything, this quest is one for the long haul. Must-read Ed Winkelman helps get you gallery-ready here.
In the keep hope alive department we hear that one new arts center devoted to photography is opening with an inaugural exhibit of LA Photographers this March, “L8S ANG3LES” features 8 LA-based Master Photographers Plus 3 From LA Times” (I am sorry that the LA Times photographers had to be signified as an addendum of sorts, but whatev). Welcome to the Annenberg Foundation’s Space for Photography. Read about it here.
It’s so exciting when people you actually kinda sorta know are in Jen Bekman’s 20×200 project. Such is the case with Kevin Miyazaki, whose series of abstract defunct fast food joints is being offered today. I share an affinity for his subject matter and execution. Support Kevin Miyazaki here.
Have you seen “My Kid Could Paint That?” It is a fascinating and complex tale of 4 year-old artiste Marla Olmsted whose abstract oil paintings sell for thousands of dollars. I took the title of this post from the extra commentary with NY Times critic Michael Kimmelman which is really not to be missed as he deconstructs what is art and to whom very neatly. From which I take it to mean is that one could be just as happy with the brillo soap box as the warhol if there is virtual nil difference.
Anyway, MKCPT, is a fascinating tale, that had me taken quite for a loop, and foregrounds all these complex issues with fame, childhood, art, underage labour etc etc. I, for one, am grateful, that though I am also the proud mum of a savant genius, our pilot of “My Dog Took that Picture” never became a full-fledged reality show.
Check it out and let me know what you think: Did she or didn’t she?