Saturday, January 31, 2009

Trip to Ann Arbor

For the last three days I have been in Ann Arbor spending time with my grandmother, Trudy Huntington, a retired professor of Anthropology at the University of Michigan. Thanks to Google's digitization of the University's books, a slew of her writings on the Amish, Mennonites and other religious groups are available here. Now I am off to the NYC area for an interview with Young & Rubicam on Monday.

Here is my grandmother's house, a ten minute walk from UM's campus and stone's throw from multiple fraternities and sororities.

Here is a picture of my grandmother near the entrance to the University of Michigan Nicholas Arboretum, affectionately known as the Arb.

Here is a photo of me using my grandmother's old Pentax slr and her using my Canon. If you look closely you can see her reflection in my sunglasses.

My grandmother and I ate at Zimmerman's, a Ann Arbor institution and restaurant straight out Stuff White People Like # 63: Expensive Sandwiches.

I am a pyromaniac so I can never take enough pictures of fire.

Friday, January 30, 2009

Barbour Internation Jacket

Since its introduction in 1936, Barbour has done little more than change the location of their logo on the iconic International Jacket. The International's 8 oz waxed cotton has kept motorcyclists dry, warm and protected from gravel for the last seventy years. The diagonal left breast pocket, designed for easy access while in the saddle, plainly identifies the jacket and influenced WWII Submarine Allied Officer Jackets.
Today, the jacket is a homage to Triumph and Indian riders like bad boys Bud Ekins and Steve McQueen. I am surprised that Brad Pitt's in the Curious Life of Benjamin Button didn't wear an International in the "look book" like motorcycle montage. Here are some photos from the Life Archive of Ekins and McQueen racing through the Mojave Desert in 1963 wearing their Barbour Jackets.

Note the Barbour plaid on Steve McQueen's well worn jacket.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

An Ode to Transplants More Restless Than Me: Sean Flynn and Dana Stone

Sean Flynn and Dana Stone were last seen on April 6, 1969 on Route One somewhere near the Viet Cong front in Cambodian. Dana and Sean were American photographers covering the Vietnam War via motorcycle when they were captured by the Viet Cong at a Cambodian check point. The photo above was taken roughly two hours before their capture.

Flynn, a former actor, singer and Duke student, and Stone, a former logger, model, sailor and gold prospector, had no prior formal photographic training before arriving in Southeast Asia. Their appetite for risk and adventure put them in great situations to take photos established them as some of the most famous photographers of the war. It also brought about their demise.

Zalin Grant wrote a great piece discussing their lives and their disappearance available here.

Men's Vogue has a slideshow documenting Sean Flynn's.

It looks like Dana is carrying three German made 35mm Nikon F's with what I imagine to be a 50mm, an 85mm and a 135mm.

Before becoming a photojournalist, Sean Flynn followed his father's foot steps, Errol Flynn, and tried his hand at acting, staring in two B grade action movies.

Francis Ford Coppola and John Milius based Dennis Hopper's character in Apocalypse Now, pictured below, around Flynn and Stone.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009


For hundreds of years, American prospectors pushed the frontiers outwards in search of valuable minerals. With just what they could carry on their backs and a couple of mules, these prospectors braved the elements and harsh environments to stake claim to mining rights. They forced the Cherokee from Georgia and dislodged the Sioux from the Black Hills of South Dakota. Few of them ever struck it big, but the allure of instant wealth continues to push geologists, hermits and adventurers to head out for the territories today.

There is something very appealing about leaving the trials of society behind in search of independence, wealth and adventure.

Monday, January 26, 2009

John Loengard

John Loengard is the only photographer to receive a Lifetime Achievement Award in Photography from Life magazine and he just so happens to be my roommate's step-grandfather. He is most famous for a picture of the Beatles in swimming pool but I like his western photos. Here are some links.


Life Archive: John Loengard


Sunday, January 25, 2009

45 RPM

Yesterday I swung by the 45 RPM on east 71st. Specializing in indigo denim for over forty years, 45 RPM has collections that my friend Edge describes as four hundred dollar selvedge denim and three hundred dollar shirts inspired by contemporary Mongolian nomads or Japanese peasants.

The store's decor and merchandising remind me of the Rogues Gallery showroom with substantial nautical influences, including a bunch of Popeye the sailor dolls and a rowboat infused into a brick wall. Their walls were made of woods native to northern climates and had amazing detail including individually chiseled siding. Here is a photo I took in a mirror on the second floor. I like what they do.

Here are some exerts from their AW08 look book.

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Portraits from last Week's trip to Vermont

Here are some more portraits from my recent trip to Vermont taken with a 5o mm f1.8 and 17-55mm f2.8.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

John in front of the United Methodist Church in Waterville

I spotted this guy giving an impromptu sermon in front of the United Methodist Church in Waterville Maine. He said that God was mad at America for electing Obama but that God loved my generation...few...

I wonder what he is listening to on his Sony tape Walkman?

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Changing Seasons: Winter

Seasons change and cultures adjust to handle these changes. Today, I recreated my first picture to capture the season changes in Maine. Instead of the same LL Bean Buck that I used on the first photo, I contrasted the bleak Maine winter with a pink Paul Smith Hudson sneaker. I like how the snow draws out the reds in the American flag.

Obama Inauguration

Today, Obama's iconic face graced the front page of over 400 hundred news paper from around the world. Here is a link to a cool page with all of them.

Here is a short video with Shepard Fairey, the creator of the multicolored Obama portrait poster.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Stuffed squirrels

I have always been into taxidermy. I saw this spread at the Vermont Field Store in Middlebury Vermont. It can be yours for $350.

Monday, January 19, 2009

Bring da Rockus

An ode to the struggles and tribulations in the occupied territories. Here is a link to my picasa page with more photos.

Fuck your TV.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Honda 350 in a snow covered field

I spotted this Honda 350 in the middle of snow covered field outside Charlotte Vermont. Note the snow filled helmet.