Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Radio Days

Okay, how do I not post about my assignments where I get to meet a celebrity?

A couple weeks back when Dick Clark passed away, we were literally zipping back and fourth across town trying to get anybody who had more than a thin connection to the man pinned down for an interview.

The folks at his production company almost went on camera.  Well, they let us into the office, but that was probably a mistake and they never had any intention of talking to us.

At least I got to see the inside lobby of their production office.

We found ourselves grasping at straws until Rick Dees agreed to talk to us.  He and Dick Clark go back a ways and RIck Dees was a great interview.

Our only problem was in getting to him.  Dick Clark Productions is based in Santa Monica.  Rick Dees is located in Burbank.  Getting across town in traffic with a deadline looming is a nice experience.

Yup, good times.

I could have done without the live-shot that day, but we shot the interview, cut the piece and made it on the air.

Sometimes the folks at home don't know what we've gone through to bring them the news.

That's what I'm here for.  I hope I make it look easy.

Monday, May 21, 2012

Studio Time

Okay, now I'm just determined to clear out all the photos I have in draft versions of posts for my blog.

This from a studio group shoot I participated in a few weeks ago.

There's usually not a great amount of difficulty in finding a group shoot.

The tough part is to find a studio and group that actually has the aspirations to try to create images that are more than just nearly naked people.

Sometimes the lights and the model help me capture a photograph that has more going for it than what's seen on the surface.

Is it art?

Not every time, but I'm trying.


I wasn't going to take pictures of the solar eclipse, but the sun was shining, my batteries were charged and I really didn't have a good reason to not snap a few shots.

It was less impressive than I'd been led to believe. Possibly because from where I was, the sun didn't actually "ring" the moon.

There was also the matter of the fog rolling in.

Oh, well. Maybe next time.

Armenian Genocide Protest (pt.2)

It pains me greatly that my time is spent with so many other things that need to be done.

So much so that I'm usually a wreck by the end of the day with little energy to form coherent thoughts about the things I've seen and would otherwise see fit to share.

It's so much easier for me to just capture the moment as it happens. Note, I said it was easier. It's rarely easy and often difficult.But my days are often quietly cool and I do like to share.

My pictures are enjoyed and that makes me happy.

Weeks ago, I covered the annual protest of the Armenian Genocide.

It was a long day for me. Lots of sadness and lots of anger.The sadness and anger I experience (even when it's not directed at me) chips away at me.

There are always lighter moments during the day. Seeing the many luxury cars that were a part of the protest left me feeling a bit conflicted.

It all just added to my feeling of regret.

I'm reminded that even though this act of genocide happened long before I was born, the potential for just as bad or worse still exists.

This is the world we live in.

There might be a simple answer, but I'm sure smarter people than me have given it more thought than I have time to devote to the problem.

I've moved on to many MANY other stories since the day of the Armenian protests.Not because I'm callous or jaded. It's because I work in news and that's part of the nature of my job. Sometimes it's difficult, but don't worry.

Even on a difficult day, I'm living an incredible life where I get to see for myself a part of the world.

No matter how tired I am at the end of the day, that makes it worthwhile.

Saturday, May 12, 2012

The Next Big Thing

My lovely wife Dellis and I flew to Arizona yesterday to attend a book signing of "The Eight-Fingered Criminal" by William R. (Buzz) Snyder.

I actually have a few friends who have gone the extra mile and put down into words the thoughts that have been swirling around in their heads.  I'm going to try to mention them all on my blog in the next several weeks, but while it's fresh in my mind, here's a quick look at the cover of my good friend's collection of short stories.


The eight-fingered criminal was his absentee father and the short story collection focuses on Buzz's growing up in the South Bay section of Los Angeles during the late sixties through the early eighties.

His book will make you laugh and has the kind of heart that I think everyone can appreciate.

"The Eight-Fingered Criminal's Son" is available in print and as an e-book through Amazon.

Monday, May 07, 2012

What? Him Again?

It's kind of funny to me when I run into the same homeless guys while I'm out covering the news.  I've bumped into this guy on a few stories and I'll be blunt, he's a pain in the ass.

I like his Santa Hat, but he actually wears tin foil most of the time.

This guy loves to stand in the background during live shots and harrass news crews.  Now he hasn't really come after me yet.  It's only a matter of time.

So sure, he drives some crews crazy, but gosh darn it, I love it when I see him on the scene.
I'm going to make him an un-official mascot of the blog.

He must have a name.  I have no idea what it is.

Saturday, May 05, 2012

I Am Somebody!

I'm only sometimes a witness to history as it happens.  Mostly I'm there after the fact. Still, it's a part of my job and a part of who I am that I enjoy having a front row seat to as much of the interesting and unusual of the world as I can.

Jesse Jackson has been around for a while and I've had the pleasure of interviewing him a couple of times in the past.

It's still kind of a cool thing to see him speak in person, even if the topic includes the death of a teenager.

My reporter and I were assigned to cover the talk Jesse Jackson was giving to a group of high school students who were classmates of Kendrec McDade.

That's the 19 year old killed by Pasadena Police Officers after having received a report that McDade and a 17 year old had held up a man at gunpoint.

It's a sad and complicated case and even sadder for the fact that even when justice is served, it won't bring back Kendrec McDade.

The talk Jesse Jackson gave was inspiring.  Most of us have heard Jesse Jackson's slogans before, but it's one thing to see the in a news report and another thing to hear them in person.

I think the message that Jesse Jackson was trying to get across is something that I've always tried to keep in mind.

We may not control everything that happens to us, but we can control our actions and the situations we place ourselves into.

I find that if you do everything right, obey the law and follow a strong moral code, well, bad things can still happen to you.

It's just a lot less likely.

For me, I think it's worth it to try and get the odds in my favor.

Wednesday, May 02, 2012

Model Work

Okay, work isn't exactly what I call it, but "practice" might lead some to believe that I was changing my mind about a career in still photography.

One of my friends who does actively seek employment for her skills as a makeup artist needed a photographer to capture images of a couple of models out at Venice Beach.

These are a few pictures from the first of two shoots we worked on together.

Every picture I take makes me a better photographer.It's this attitude that found me up at the too early hour of 5:30am on a Sunday morning.

There's no money changing hands for these shoots, but the experience was valuable. I'd never shot a model on the beach before.
My expectation was that a lifeguard would be coming around at some point with a wistle and running us off.

Sad to say, we've been run off before (I'm looking at you Old Zoo at Griffith Park).

The morning was beautiful and I was happily surprised that no lifeguard gave us any trouble.

Maybe next time we'll push the envelope a bit and bring some light stands with us.