For the longest time, I’ve been fascinated by clouds. Ask anyone close to me. Some of the best clouds are in Seattle. There is just something about that city which brings out the best clouds. The only place I’ve ever seen with better clouds is Santa Fe, New Mexico. What is it about clouds? I don’t know…there’s something magical and humbling about watching a storm develop. I could sit for hours and watch storm clouds develop in the heat of summer. When the clouds turn dark and the lightning starts, you know your place in the world very quickly.

This image is in Seattle, just outside the Experience Music Project (a must for music lovers when visiting Seattle).

EMP Clouds

This image is from a boat on Lake Union in Seattle. The cloud simply dwarfs the skyline of Seattle.

Lake Union Clouds

I remember presenting a report about the life of photographer Alfred Stieglitz in college and recalled a story about how he spent months photographing clouds every day. This is an excerpt from an inductee statement for the International Photography Hall of Fame.

Searching for another way in which to make a personal, artistic statement with his camera, Stieglitz looked to the sky. In the early 1920s he made some of his first images of clouds. However, by using the palladium process, the resulting images were extremely bright, and one was unable to differentiate between the sky and the clouds. Driven by challenge, Stieglitz began to experiment with some of the newly introduced emulsions and silver gelatin paper. With this paper, combined with the .straight. photographic practices inspired by Paul Strand, success found Stieglitz once again and by 1924 he had an artistic series he called Equivalents. I wanted to photograph clouds to find out what I had learned in forty years about photography. Through clouds to put down my philosophy of show that the success of my photographs was not due to subject matter.not to special trees, or faces, or interiors, to special privileges, clouds were there for everyone. Paul Strand inspired the characteristics of most of this series, some of his 1920s work, and most of Stieglitz.s later work.

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  • Erio

    The Equivalents series is just amazing. When I was back in Chicago, I had the chance to see quite a few of the original prints. The simplicity of what clouds are to us, forever living beneath them, the prints that Stieglitz created still have left impressions on my brain.ReplyCancel

One of the grooms I photographed happens to be an F-15C Eagle pilot. He and his wife travel all over the world and continue to stay in touch, sending updates about their lives. His mission is a seemingly simple one… Air Superiority. In today’s world that is very serious, but his life is one that brings out dreams we’ve all had since we were little boys.

My father treated my brother and I to an Air Combat mission a few years ago. That is something I will never forget as long as I live. We flew three dogfights in the SIAI Marchetti SF-260. This small prop plane is so swift that it’s considered a trainer for jet fighter pilots. From the time you lift off until just before touchdown, you are in complete control of the aircraft. The co-pilots are ex-military pilots and the whole flight is video taped from both planes so you can compare your flight in the debriefing. While that was one of the most exhilerating experiences of my life, I can only imagine what it would be like to fly in an F-15 fighter.

This pilot was kind enough to share a couple of photos that he thought I would enjoy. These are F-15C Eagles, just off the coast in “the Wash” region of the North Sea, north of East Anglia in England. You may think this photo is oriented incorrectly, but it’s actually a 150 degree bank as the two jets turn into the clouds along the coast.

150 degrees of bank

The F-15 banking in formation. What beautiful countryside!

F-15C Rolloff

Two F-15’s flying above the clouds in formation.

F-15C Formation

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For the second year in a row, I was asked to join photographer Gary Voth as an associate photographer for the Microsoft CEO Summit. This conference is held every year at the Microsoft campus in Redmond, Washington. It’s fascinating and exhilerating to stand behind the scenes and document the world’s business leaders. Access that I would never have if I were not a photographer. It’s one of the aspects of my profession that I enjoy the most. It’s one thing to hear Bill Gates speech “The New World of Work” and quite another to see it up close and in person.

Due to the nature of my agreement with Microsoft and the very private nature of the attendees, I am not permitted to show you my work. But Gary Voth has posted a few images from our photo shoot on his web site. CEO Summit 2005 Working with Gary is an amazing experience. He is extremelly talented and I am continually humbled when I work with him. His ability to pull out great images from these very challenging situations is inspiring and uncanny. Be sure to visit Gary’s web site. His archive of newspaper photojournalism is impressive as well as his photoessays on Africa and India.

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This is how Urban Dictionary defines blogging. Urban dictionary is an online slang dictionary with definitions written by “real” people. As such, it’s not always appropriate for everyone. Use with discretion.
Short for weblog.
A meandering, blatantly uninteresting online diary that gives the author the illusion that people are interested in their stupid, pathetic life. Consists of such riveting entries as “homework sucks” and “I slept until noon today.”

v. intr.
The act of posting to a weblog.

My goal is to provide interesting contributions and photos that will inspire or intrique you. Finding time to actually keep up with this is another story! Please feel free to write to me and let me know what you think or what you’d like to see. This is all new to me and I hope you enjoy your time here and want to come back. Thanks for looking!

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Oregon International Airshow in Hillsboro, Oregon

Ever since I was a little boy, I’ve been fascinated by planes. This is something my father, my brother and I all share…our passion for planes. It was refreshing to step out of wedding mode and point my camera towards a new subject. Photographing a jet breaking the sound barrier requires a whole different set of skills. I hope you enjoy a few of my favorites from that rainy Saturday in September.

F-15C Fighter

This is an F-15C fighter that is flown by the Oregon Air National Guard, stationed at the Portland International Airport. I live close to the airport and hear these fighters take off daily on their routine missions patrolling the coast. Sometimes I’m lucky enough to catch a glimpse of them ripping up the skies.

F-15C Afterburner

There is nothing quite like the sound of a jet fighter’s afterburner. Look at the pulsing exhaust coming out of the jet and onto the runway.

Low Pass Oracle Plane

It’s easy to be enamored by the loud and fast fighters, but I have to admit this pilot (Sean D. Tucker) was easily one of the best at the airshow. His plane is a custom built Pitts S-2 Special called the Challenger II and this guy really put it through it’s paces.

Some interesting facts about his airshow routine. More than half of Sean’s maneuvers are original and have never been duplicated by another aerobatic pilot. Twice, during every air show, Sean will fly the Oracle Challenger-II backwards at a speed of more than 100 mph.

The G-forces exerted on Sean when he is flying are greater than those on the pilots in modern fighters like the Air Force Thunderbirds and Navy Blue Angels. From his normal weight of 175 pounds, Sean will weigh nearly 1,700 pounds while pulling 10 positive G’s…and will resist the force 1,200 pounds pulling on his head as 7.5 negative G’s tries to pull him out of the cockpit!

Red Baron Cross

The Red Baron acrobatic team was on display at the airshow. Who knew pizza’s could pay for a vintage aerial acrobatic team? This near miss always makes your heart skip a beat.

Wing Walker

Talk about a vintage airshow from the 1930’s…when was the last time you have seen a wing walker?

A-10 and P-51

Two of my favorite planes flying together…the A-10 Warthog and the P-51 Mustang. Just the sound of the P-51 brings back memories of days gone by. There is nothing like the sound of that engine flying past at treetop level.

Air Force Thunderbirds

The Air Force Thunderbirds were the finale of the airshow. Unfortunately, there was a large thunderstorm in the area. It was rumored that the routine would be cancelled, but they showed up in the end. Their routine was a low level, shortened routine, but the Thunderbirds are the best of the best.

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  • Les McClain

    The DVD of this movie has a history of the aircraft on it. The striking thing to me is how quickly they cobbled them together. Compare that to the reconstructed Wright flyer for the 2003 anniversary which seemed to take years.

    You’ve got an interesting site here.ReplyCancel