Thursday, March 26, 2009


- here comes Z -

the AUGUSTA SYMPHONY's newest conductor. Shizuo Kuwahara (what a cool last name) is the third conductor in the organization's history. his friends (which includes everyone in augusta) call him Z. he is an internationally recognized talent, winning first place at the Solti Competition this November. he also happens to be a truly nice guy. he was obviously Sandra Self's (the executive director of the symphony) first choice of the four candidates. during the day, which included a press conference, impromptu shoot, and reception, i was struck by his relaxed demeanor and rapport with his musicians. he seems to have a honest desire for them to have fun. he repeatedly ask that we take fun and creative shots - not the standard stoic poses so often associated with orchestral pics. another thing i found impressive was that he rarely wanted to be shot without the musicians. it gave me the sense that he valued them as integral parts of the team and not just "employees." i believe we will see a renewed sense of pride and ownership from every individual involved with the SYMPHONY under his leadership. BTW, he conducts (and talks) with his hands and NO baton. truth is - if he conducts music with the same passion that he talks about it - the SYMPHONY will be a powerful experience.

Z is pretty cool -


Monday, March 23, 2009


another beautiful STEEPLECHASE weekend. allegedly featured in the book "1000 places to see before you die," the event is one of AIKEN's favorite community parties. always a sort of homecoming literally circled by the race itself. more information from

from the site:


The Association was founded in Aiken in 1930 by several influential horseman among these were Thomas Hitchcock, Temple Gwathmey and Harry Worchester Smith. The first official race was run in Hitchcock Woods (a beneficiary of the Aiken Steeplechase Association) along the Aiken Hounds draglines. Over a thousand people gathered to watch some from as far away as Camden. To keep them company, several hundred children from Aiken Prep and Fermata School were mounted on their ponies for a better chance at viewing the sport. Aiken has been home to many steeplechase greats and to many exceptional trainers: Thomas Hitchcock, the dean of American Steeplechasing and Ambrose Clark, one of the sport's greatest players, to name a few. Many other people have the passion for the sport and it is to their credit that it renewed in 1967 after a twenty-five year hiatus due to war and civic development.

The past efforts of Charlie S. Bird, III, G.H. Bostwick, MacKenzie Miller, Willard Thompson, Ford Conger, and Paul Mellon revived the tradition of Steeplechasing in Aiken and have left a legacy that the Association now calls upon again to secure the future of the sport.

Whether it is fact or fiction, the universal truth is that horses will always rein supreme in Aiken's history and in her future. It is the goal of the Aiken Steeplechase Association to continue this legacy started by these sporting gentlemen.

hopefully we'll see you next year...


Friday, March 20, 2009


LAWSON CODY LITTLE MAN BUDDY MAXWELL CLINE is just about the coolest little guy you can imagine... loves fast cards ( wonder where he got that?) he is kind, creative and just a blast to hang out with. we travel to porsche races, aquariums, museums and other adventures all over the southeast and just have the greatest time traveling. we seem to always have strangers stop and say "OMG, he looks just like you." (which i take as a HUGE complement)

i hope every father feels as blessed as i do -


the POLO

this info is from A VIEW FROM THE BOARDS - a great little pub produced by CARSTEN PETERS

polo is a wonderful way to spend a sunday afternoon in AIKEN.

AIKEN POLO CLUB Spring 2009 Tournament Schedule

Spring 1st 4 Goal: April 16- April 26
Spring 1st 8 Goal: April 30- May 17
Spring 2nd 8 Goal: May 14- May 31
Spring 2nd 4 Goal: June 4- June 14
Spring 3rd 4 Goal: June 18- June 28

For More information please contact the APC @ 803-292-3377

See you on the field!


i've been hired to shoot another stunning property in AIKEN. i had always known it as NIMROD SOUTH although i've learned its original name was "GREEN SHINGLES" - most houses in DOWNTOWN AIKEN have names. sabrina grew up in a house named "HELL'S BELLS" allegedly because the physician that lived there years ago was tortured by phone calls. there is the 60 room "cottage" named JOYE and behind it a house simply named "THE PINK HOUSE." my favorite name for house was "QUEL FROMAGE" which i always felt was poking great fun at the pretentiousness of naming ones house in the first place. by the way - best i could tell, the shingles on "GREEN SHINGLES" were at best the darkest charleston green and probably would be considered black to the casual observer. welcome to AIKEN.

see you at the steeplechase this weekend - which by way - has nothing to do with pursuing church architecture.


Wednesday, March 18, 2009


one of favorite pictures is of my daughter waiting to see the macy's thanksgiving day parade from last year. she is not terribly photogenic... SHE IS wonderfully strong-willed, independent and intelligent. she truly is an amazing little person for which i have tremendous respect. for me, this picture has always captured her personality well.

here she is on the subway.


Sunday, March 15, 2009


i spent most of a cold and dreary saturday at the AIKEN TRIALS. i actually enjoyed the racing and was extremely proud to see DOGWOOD STABLES make such a fine showing. i left my camera in the car thinking i would take the day off, didn't want to get the gear rained on, there were plenty of photographers there and i wasn't feeling very creative... blah, blah blah pick your excuse. seems like everyone i saw ask where my camera was and why i wasn't shooting when i replied that i didn't have a "press" badge... one showed up. so i crossed over to the outfield and set up with the other photogs to shoot a couple races and the polo demonstration. as i watched the people around the judges stand i noticed this quiet man with a unwavering smile letting people through the "gate" onto the track to cross to the tent party in the infield. all levels of money, status, age, beauty came through his gate. they all got the same warm smile. i never heard him say a word and am ashamed to say i never asked his name. which means - you guessed it - i didn't get a model release. but, i did get an unexpected lesson in SERVICE.

NO MATTER what you are here to do, do it well, do it with a smile, do it equally for everyone and do it humbly... and you will provide a good service. and eventually, you might even inspire someone.

it was a good day.


Tuesday, March 10, 2009


if you haven't been to MORRIS MUSEUM of ART lately, you're missing something special. JIM MCGUIRE'S nashville portraits is a collection of intimate portraits of some of the most legendary musicians. it help me understand why the native americans thought a photograph could capture a person's being. these images are deffinately captures of some extrodinary souls. it was an honor to meet MR. MCGUIRE and an intimidating prospect to take his picture. i highly suggest you stop by and breathe this collection in deeply.


Friday, March 6, 2009


MARCH in aiken.

The Aiken Trials / Saturday, March 14

Polo Practice / Spring Season starts March 15

43rd Running of the Aiken Spring Steeplechase / Saturday, March 21st, 2009

USC Pacers and Polo Triple Crown Game / Saturday, March 28

Whitney Field is one of the oldest and most historic polo clubs in the United States. Aikenites have enjoyed polo on Whitney Field for 127 continuous years.

MARCH is a great time to be in AIKEN. See you around...


Tuesday, March 3, 2009


i had the distinct pleasure of photographing the mayor of augusta, ga - DEKE COPENHAVER. along with being a very gracious subject, he is also one of the best loved local political figures in decades. he has an ongoing conversation with closing on 3000 constituents through his facebook page. we collaborated (through facebook) on a shot that would convey augusta's strength and direction through this economic climate. to that end, we shot the new library construction site and an area along the newly reclaimed canal system. what we didn't plan on was the 28 degree weather. DEKE told a great story of how seeing his name permanently carved in a huge marble slab along the canals was one of those moments when he thought - wow, i really am the the mayor. (not a quote, more of a paraphrase) i scratched my name in concrete once, so i can kinda relate to the permanence... but can't even come close to the gravity. GOOD JOB DEKE. and THX for your time.


Monday, March 2, 2009


i'm nice, and dog-on-it my clients like me...

for real, these guys are blowing up. it has been fun to be a small part of their rather dramatic rise. plus, it gave me an excuse to show a pic of alex wier and his custom logo painting by jay jacobs.

STROBIST INFO: SB800 shoot through an umbrella on mr. wier and a gridded spot in the conference room for the logo/painting.

RAD shoot

another WIERHOUSE shoot, this time it was a fast trip through a medical setting. one day to get a variety of medical vignettes for their upcoming campaign. while it can be fun to set up enough lights to shoot ISO 50 with the RZs, sometimes the job calls for a more nimble solution. in this case is was even more fun to improvise with the D3 and a couple speedlights (thx david hobby) the shoot ended up being extremely productive. the way WIERHOUSE is going i'm sure you'll see more of these shots at next year's addy awards.