Kevin Twomey Visits a Local Legend Before It Closes It’s Doors.

_MG_7014Kevin Twomey spends his weekends riding his bicycle and hiking in some of the most beautiful places in Northern California.   Since my weekends are often very different (think being a mom, 3 kids and sporting events) I am always in awe of the photographs he shares at the end of a weekend of the latest remote place he discovered.  On a recent weekend trip to Point Reyes, he visited a place that compelled him to write a blog post.  

Here is what he had to say.

“When the  choice between paper or plastic at the grocery store was first offered to me (which today will cost you 10 cents per bag in San Francisco),  I stood there in front of the cashier with a confused look while taking too much time weighing the positive and negatives of both.

This  week, my indecision involves the agonizing question regarding extending the lease of Drakes Oyster Company’s operation in Point Reyes. I am glad I am not the “Decider”.

I visited the Oyster Farm on March 2nd to experience what might be my last tasting of DOC’s delicious raw oysters before  they close in a couple of months due to a 40 year lease that expired last year.

I had a nice talk with the son of the owner of Drake’s Oyster Co., Sean Lunny, as he worked on the line that sorts the oysters. He hopes that the federal government will at least allow them to finish harvesting what is still in the waters. The Oyster Farm plants and harvests 8 million oysters a year (producing about 460,000 pounds of shucked oysters).  They still have about 2 years of unharvested oysters in 1,000 acres of submerged land. Their operation accounts for about 40% of the commercial oyster production in the state. These numbers are quite impressive for a small company that strives to produce a product through sustainable agricultural practices with ecological responsibility.

After my conversation I walked around the farm and took a few snapshots of their farm & production.

As one who appreciates our natural wonders, I applaud the Park Service’s efforts to keep supporting our marine life.  But I cannot help but feel there is some way a company that provides sustainable, local-grown organic food can co-exist.  Because closing this company will affect the consumer market for oysters I wonder who will step up to replace what they provided and at what cost?  A company on some other less-defended shoreline waters 6000 miles away?  One that isn’t practicing sustainable agricultural practices?

Feeling compelled to help save Drakes Oyster Company?  Link to here to sign their petition.

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Andy Anderson Says that Ice Trolls Invented Drinking.

Over the years, the word I hear most when people are describing Andy Anderson’s photography is SOULFUL.  That is because he has a powerful connection to the people and places he photographs.  He doesn’t just take pictures, he makes friends.  Life long friends.

On a recent trip to Northern Minnesota to shoot personal work of the ice fishing sub culture,  Andy met some new friends.  Link to Andy’s blog to read what he shares about his trip and why he thinks the ice trolls invented drinking.

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Chris Crisman Launches his New Website.

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As anyone in this business knows, it is never an easy task to design a new website.   The design alone is a huge undertaking and then the uploading and sequencing always adds weeks to an already long schedule!  Congratulations to you and your studio for a job well done!  The images are large, the navigation easy, there are portfolios and libraries to review and the grid view is pretty cool.  Check it out yourself here.

And, if you like what you see and what to view his portfolio, that is easy enough. We have a video of it here for you.


Heather Elder Represents Rethinks the Agency Portfolio.

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Last year, we decided that it was a good time to create an AGENCY PORTFOLIO.  We had a fantastic group of photographers and many opportunities to show it off.  We didn’t want it to be a typical group book that had a section for each photographer.  While we like those and they are always very strong, we wanted ours to be a little different so that it would stand out more at events such as Le Book’s Connections.

What we came up with was a portfolio divided by SPECIALTY instead of by PHOTOGRAPHER.  We liked this idea because it allowed us to showcase the type of work our group can offer while allowing the viewer to file our group away by different specialities.  Of course it is always our main goal for a creative to learn who our photographers are and what they shoot individually.  This will never change.  But, by offering an alternate way for them to view the work in our group, we are opening up another opportunity for them to remember the work.

More often than not the Agency Portfolio is shown in conjunction with the individual portfolios so if a viewer is interested in seeing more, they can choose to do so right then and there.  This is particularly helpful in a setting like Le Book Connections because there are so many books to view and it can get overwhelming for some. We have found that our agency book provides a breath of fresh air in a crowded market.

Take a look for yourself and see.  It is no mistake that we chose the song, Breathe by Sia as the background music.  Enjoy!

Click here to see the video of our Agency Portfolio

Click here to see the video of our Agency Portfolio

Unveiling Chris Crisman new portfolio at Le Book’s LA Connections today. Can’t see it in person, then check out the video here.

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As all photographers know that creating a new portfolio is always a huge undertaking.  As Chris Crisman explains in his blog post about the process, it indeed “takes a village.”

Months of planning, weeks of designing and days of printing and assembling has led us to today – the day we unveil the new portfolio at Le Book Connections in Los Angeles.  If you are going to be at the event, please do come by and check it out.  We would love to show it off.

If you are not able to see it in person, link here and see the video.

David Martinez’s Daughter puts Photography to Use for her Other Passion; Service.

Recently I was visiting a shoot of David Martinez’s and  he was sharing a beautiful story about his daughter Ava and her passion for photography and commitment to service.  She had just started her college career and was growing into a wonderful young woman.  David’s story was so wonderful that I asked him to share it with us on the blog.  Here is what he had to say.

“Like an image appearing on a photograph in silver halide salts-  there is anticipation, excitement, and wonder at having a child return home from college. My daughter, Ava, went away to Occidental College last year and I wondered what she would be like after a year away from her mother and I. Would she be who she was when she left? Would she have new hobbies, new interests, new friends?

Sending a child out into the world is a lot like having your heart walk around on the outside of your body. You hope the world is kind to them, that you’ve taught them the skills to deal with a sometimes unkind world, but that they also have faith that the world can be a generous and loving place.

Ava decided that she wanted to go to Ghana, Africa during her summer break to volunteer at a children’s orphanage. She found the program herself, unsolicited by her teachers, her parents, her friends – it was something that only Ava wanted to do. In a word, I was worried.

She went away for two weeks + we heard very little from her – when we went to pick her up from the airport – I knew that something in Ava had changed.She has always been bright, beautiful and driven – but Ava had new focus. Over the next few weeks, Ava became more and more involved in the orphanage. She decided she wanted to raise enough money to give the orphanage electricity. We sat down together to look through her photographs to make some images for her to show her friends and family and use to talk about her experience. As the images appeared in our photo editing program (forget the silver halide salts!!), I watched in amazement as I took a look at the world through Ava’s eyes – at the children she played games with, the little cot she slept on, at the shaky orphanage structure.

It was the first time Ava had used a digital SLR, we talked about the magic of shooting in a RAW format – how to make color images into beautiful, rich black and white photos. We explored how cropping can affect the entire composition of an image, how just one image can tell a story, and how to take a picture that shows a real moment. It turns out Ava had a really great eye for photography – she edited her pictures and printed a book that beautifully represented her experience in Ghana. As a father and a photographer, I couldn’t have been more proud.

Please take a look at a few of Ava’s photographs and feel free to donate to her cause here.”

What defines a photograph? Some controversy brewing over on Chris Crisman’s blog.

@Chris Crisman

@Chris Crisman

I always like it when a blog post gets people thinking and talking.  Sometimes the best part of the post ends up being the conversation being had in the comments.  Well, a recent post that Chris Crisman posted on his blog sure is starting a conversation about what defines a photograph.  If it is not created 100% in camera, is it still defined as a photograph?  If it was not created 100% in camera, can it win an award?

Well, Chris Crisman created a wonderful photograph that was recognized by the World Photography Organization’s 2012 World Photography Awards and it wasn’t created all in camera.  The ensuing controversy on blogs worldwide made Chris think long and hard about “What Defines a Photograph?”

Click to Chris’ blog directly to read what he has to say about it and how the story unfolded.

And, please don’t be shy – Chris would love to hear from you.  Be sure to comment on his blog or email him directly from the post.


Were you at Le Book Connections Chicago? If not, check out our photos and see who was there.

Another great Connections event hosted by Le Book, this time in Chicago.  Than you Chicago for being such welcoming hosts.  It was so wonderful to see  old friends  and meet new ones too!

Hunter Freeman is NOT responsible for this!*

© Hunter Freeman –

When I first saw Hunter Freeman’s new series of work, “Kids with Power Tools,”  I couldn’t believe what I was seeing!  Did he really do this?   When I asked him what he was thinknig giving power tools to kids, here is how he replied.

“It’s not like any of you haven’t thought of doing something like this yourself.  Of course you have (it’s ok to admit it, especially the guys).  Everyone’s been a kid, and as you recall, one of our young life’s goals was to maximize the fun we had.  So, why not do that again?  In my case, since I am no longer seven years old (except, perhaps, mentally), I thought that I’d just grab some little munchkins and some power tools and see what the h*!! would happen.
As we all know, you need the right tool for the right job.  In a bit of a switch (if you’ll pardon the pun), I started with a tool.  First up, a Milwaukee brand Hole Shot Corded Electric Drill with 1/2″ chuck – an awesome piece of equipment that can drill through anything.  Next, where shall we drill?  Why not a little home improvement?  There’s always room (several rooms in fact) for improvement.  So, cabinets it is! And, of course, they can always use some ventilation! Next, ask one of the neighbor’s sweet kids to make some nice, pretty holes in another neighbor’s cabinets. (Mazie was such a dear, hard-working helper, btw)  Then, just capture the fun.  Here’s how it all went…
Hunter:  “Ok, Mazie, the little trigger makes the drill work, so just press it and push the drill nice and slowly into the cabinet.”
Mazie:  “Mr. Freeman, are you sure it’s ok that we do this?”
H:  “Oh, yes, Mazie, it’s just fine.”
M:  “Um, are you sure, ’cause the Lerners aren’t home right now.”
H:  “I’m sure they won’t mind at all.  Ok, let’s go ahead!”
M:  “Ok.”  (sound of drill)
M:  (shouting)  “This makes a lot of noise, but it’s really fun!”
H:  “It sure is, Mazie!  It sure is!”
When we finished, we packed up my gear and swept up (didn’t want to leave a mess).  Mazie asked if she could borrow the drill, but I told her that I don’t lend my tools to just anyone.  But, I told her, I would be happy to let her use another one, like my disc sander.  I told her how it could make tons and tons of pretty sparks when you grind on a metal surface, like on a car.  She was really really excited about doing that.  I asked her to start looking for a really nice car to try it on.  She was totally up for that.
*Hunter Freeman is not responsible.  And is shocked, shocked he says, that your son/daughter said he gave them the idea to do something like that.

© Hunter Freeman –

© Hunter Freeman –