I bought Sambas the other day.

While I like these shoes a lot, I've found they've caused a small crisis in my life because I can't skate in them.



Photography thought #1

The difference between documentary photography and candid photography is this: good documentary photography isn't about people. It's about ideas. Whatever elements are in that photo are only there because they serve to illustrate an idea.

Candid photography is where you trick a kid into smiling at a ducky.


Mark Romanek

This video is by Hillman Curtis. He's done a lot of short documentary's on artists. Others featureLawrence Weiner, Milton Glaser and David Carson. All of them are very good and I highly recommend checking out the rest of the work on his site.

But this post isn't actually about Hillman Curtis, it's about Mark Romanek.

There are many things that can make a music video bad. Poor concept, lame song or boring direction are common causes. The conceptual freedom that one has when creating a music video can be both its greatest strength and biggest weakness.

This is where he shines.

Romanek's video for 99 Problems by Jay-Z is relatively simple. It's Jay-Z rapping into the camera with scenes of prison & ghetto life interspersed between.

The video I've just described could easily suck.

But because of the photography, direction and overall tone it doesn't. It's a dramatic, interesting and beautiful interpretation of Jay-Z's work, a video worthy of the song.

Little Trouble Girl by Sonic Youth is somewhat more conceptual, but the visual of the alien-like girl exploring an empty office building is still somewhat grounded.

My favorite shot from this video is the chair as a light is turned on. The light streams across the leather. It's golden.

Can't Stop by the Red Hot Chili Peppers is on the far side of the conceptual scale. Some could describe it as random* but I prefer the term spontaneous.

Featuring florescent backpacks, an packing peanut/guitar orgy and a luminescent dance, the video for Can't Stop is bright, visually appealing and weird in all the best ways.

For a documentary, commentary & to own these and more music videos you can buy Director's Series Vol. 4 - Work of Director Mark Romanek from Amazon.com.

*Because of the negative (read: stupid) connotations with the word random.


Stereotypes at my work.

I got a job at a credit card security company last week. I'm training right now and have been jumping from person to person for one on one time. If you know what I mean. Anyway it feels a little like a movie how hardcore some of the stereotypes are here.

Fuck, having a real job is odd.

Cop Guy.

Heavyset, spiky hair and always exaggerating, Cop Guy is always down to brag about how knowledgeable he is. He went through police academy but didn't end up joining the force because his wife wouldn't let him. He had one experience involving having a gun pointed at him when he was a cadet and talks about it endlessly.

He's what's called a "Scan Tech". That means that he explains the security scans that Security Metrics does. He thinks he's hot stuff knowing about open ports and cgi scripts, but I heard him asking how to install Firefox on his home computer the other day.

Also, he's named after a character in General Hospital.

Motivational Seminar Kid.

22 and ready to make money, Motivational Seminar Kid has a plan. He's always going to seminars involving business and money. He carries a binder around with him all the time containing quotes, papers and dark secrets.

By his desk is a sheet taped to the wall with quotes about paths of least resistance and business metaphors.

Money is success to him, but he doesn't want to be too rich. A cap of 20M is fine for him.

32 Year Old Guy Who Always Sounds Like He's High All The Time.


Almost Everyone Else.

Wears PHAT skate shoes and shirts from ether Hollister/A.E. or Skin Industries. Backwards hats are the norm and ping-pong is a way of life.

So that's a brief survey of the people who I work with. Everyone is pretty nice and tech company's are pretty boss to work for, so it could be worse.


A hardcore ska band, Modest Mouse covers and I Met the Walrus.

I originally started listening to Iron Horse as a joke, but it turns out I really like bluegrass Modest Mouse covers. Of particular liking is Trailer Trash.

Speaking of Modest Mouse, my favorite song by anyone is So Much Beauty in Dirt.

If you're like me and your musical interests have dabbled in both ska and hardcore - then you still might not like this band. But it's an interesting idea none the less. A Billion Ernies is a hardcore/ska band.

I Met the Walrus is a fantastic animated short set to an interview Jerry Levitan made with John Lennon. Jerry was 14 at the time and John was staying in hotel beds to promote peace.

Also worth checking out is the mp3 on kidsandexplosions.com.

Ok last thing. I like Jake Chessum's bio page. Interesting execution.

Keep it real. Katrina does.

I mean this empty space.

It's the nights like this that I really enjoy – or at least used to before I had work.

Yes, it's only been a week that I've worked at Security Metrics but it's the principal of the matter. The thing is: it's 3:11 am right now and I feel like I could go on a roll. I've decided to split up Love City into three different blogs and I want to get working on that.


I have to sleep. Curse you cruel world.

On the bright side, working a job like this (while I enjoy learning about Linux & working with 90% cool people) has made me remember how much I don't want to do anything for a career but photography.

Anyway. This is the first post of the rest of my life. Soon I'll be eating, then in bed. You, however might be interested in my photography portfolio website.