Saturday, May 23, 2009

JLOP: Hollywood After Midnight!

Even though I thought it was just a joke at first, I'm becoming increasingly suspicious of my station's intentions. After the trip to DC and the two days I spent running the satellite truck on the Faria Beach triple homicide, holy crap, I'm convinced they really do want to kill me.

It's been quite a while since I last worked so many hours of overtime in one week. By Friday evening I was completely zombie-fried and typically would be looking forward to a night on the comfy couch with maybe a tasty beverage and my lovely wife to keep me company.

Just one tiny problem.

I'd already put out the call for a Justice League of Photographers meet up in Hollywood for Friday night.

Yeah, any sane person would have blown it off or canceled it altogether. I didn't do either. That must speak pretty clearly to my level of sanity. Ha-ha-ha (sinister laughter).

Working so hard during the week just made me desperately want to be free to do something completely for the art of it.

I'm so glad I made the effort.

Including me, five guys showed up. We were very much rewarded for our brave and total mule headed stubborn dedication to capturing the moments a lot of people never get to see for themselves.

The shots in the "red alley" alone made the entire trip worthwhile and would likely never have been captured by any one of us on our own. Even though the area seemed relatively safe, there was a good sense of security in numbers even in our smaller turn out for the evening.

I can't imagine what kind of shenanigans we might get into if the bulk of our group (we are NOT a club) were to show up. Also, I can't imagine how Erik didn't get punched out for at least two of his shots (he can guess which ones).

Maybe next time.

Working in news, I admit I've developed a taste for the grittier side of the urban landscape. The sights and sounds and smells are just completely different from what I experience in the day to day of my adult life.

You know, I can only speak for myself and your opinion of who you are (or who I am, for that matter) might be a bit different, but I think the existence I've carved out of life for myself just kicks ass.

I'm not particularly envious of the people I meet, but having the ability to capture a mood or a moment and share it or preserve it makes me want to put myself in the middle of interesting things.

I can't have it all, but I have enough for me, so I'm content to witness. I'm content and actually pretty happy to have the opportunity to document the parts of the world that don't take place in the comfort of home or just outside our front door.

I don't know that I'll ever do anything more with the pictures I take. I don't know that I won't, it just becomes more and more obvious to me (and apparently to everyone who knows me) as time passes that this is seriously more than just a hobby.

It fills large chunks of my time and it does very much consume me.

It's okay, because I do enjoy it.

The effort and expense I put into the "work" of still photography is extremely rewarding for me. The possibility of ever being "good" enough to support my life through a lens, I'll also admit is very very intriguing.

I'm not sure that I have to "do" anything more. I make the small steps as I move forward. I learn from every photo I take. I benefit from the knowledge of all my friends.

I just try to take advantage of opportunity whenever and wherever I hear the knock.

Had a blast last night. Sorry if you wanted to be there and couldn't make it. Don't worry, we'll be having another meet up next month. Just be ready to heed the call and remember, we are not a club.

Good job, guys. The Justice League of Photographers strikes again!
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Ian said...

This is a really cool idea. How does an amateur photographer find out about the call so he can heed it?

beFrank said...

Look us up on Facebook.

Rick Rivers said...

Wow, your photos are beautiful technically, detail, lighting and dazzling colors, but also the "frank" subject matter. Yeah, us artists mostly do what we do for love. My mom told me "Why be an artist? You'll only get famous after you're dead." Now, I don't even expect that to happen!