Friday, May 30, 2008

Random NYC street shot

© 2008 by Mason Resnick

My next street photography course starts next week! You can still register...

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Street Photos: Memorial Day parade

Photos © 2008 by Mason Resnick

Also a shout-out to Leora Wenger for busting me for shooting these with a digital camera! (Scroll halfway down the page). And thanks to Leora for posting a link to my street fair pix.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Street photo contest call for entries!

If you're a street shooter in New York, check this out: WNYC, New York's public TV station, is holding the Street Shots Challenge. You can enter as many as 20 shots, as long as they were taken withing the 5 boroughs. It's being hosted on flickr.

Enter here

Sunday, May 18, 2008

New Jersey street fair: Part 3


New Jersey street fair: Part 2


Street photos: New Jersey street fair (Part 1)


Friday, May 16, 2008

50th Anniversary for "The Americans"

Robert Frank's seminal book, "The Americans," is one of a handful of must-have books for any serious photography collection. Influential to generations of street and documentary photographers, the book captured the essence of the 50s in a way that somehow visually evoked beat poetry and jazz. Yesterday, May 15th, was the 50th anniversary of its publication.

To celebrate the 50th anniversary, Steidl has reprinted The Americans in what apparently is the finest quality reproduction to date. If you care about black-and-white photography and don't already have this important book, I highly recommend it.


Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Film camera death watch II: Who cares?

Wired's Gadget Lab blog notes, under the headline "Film Cameras Officially Dead In Japan" that indeed, only 529 film cameras were sold in Japan in February, but get this: according to Wired, the number of new digital still cameras sold in January was 5,417,463 vs. 1,580 film still cameras the same month.

Then again, as B&W World friend David Schonauer, editor of American Photo, asks in his State of the Art blog, are you sad about this?

I think David asks the wrong question. The right question is: What will pot users store their stash in now?

Michael Adams (Ansel's son) speaks!

A California-based photographer who blogs under the pseudonym Thomas Hawk spent two days in Yosemite with none other than Michael Adams, Ansel Adams's son, and interviewed Michael for a video which we can't wait to see. In the meantime, Hawk has put together a list of 10 things he learned about Ansel from his son.

Most interestingly, number 1 on the list is that Ansel would have loved and embraced digital photography. This jibes with everything I'd heard. In discussing Ansel over the years with people who knew him, such as Julia Scully, former editor of Modern Photography, and the late Herbert Keppler, Adams was indeed interested in digital in its early days and saw its potential.

To quote from Thomas Hawk's blog post: "When I asked Michael how his dad might view digital photography, Photoshop, etc. today, he told me that he thought his dad would love it and very much be involved with it."

I know Ansel's interest (or lack thereof) in digital has been debated endlessly by people who studied the Zone system but never met Adams. I'd say this conclusively answers that debate!

Read the entire post

View some rough videos of Michael Adams by Hawk's trekking partner and videographer Robert Scoble

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Film camera death watch: CIPA drops film camera stats

The Camera & Imaging Products Association (CIPA) has stopped reporting on film camera production figures, according to an article by Chris Cheesman of Amateur Photographer.

According to the Japanese Ministry of Economy, Trade & Industry--now the only source for such information--only 529 35mm cameras were made in Japan in February. That's sad.

And I'll bet most of those cameras were specialty cameras made by Cosina under the Voigtlander Bessa brand (see a fine specimen, below).

Is this the last of the Dodos?

Friday, May 09, 2008

30 years later, street photographer meets subject

Like many other street photographers, I've always wondered what would happen if someone I'd photographed recognized himself (or herself) in one of my photos. Would they get mad? Would they sue?

Jill Freedman, an amazing street and documentary photographer, found out when a postal worker named Mario Pesa recognized himself in one of Jill's photos. The photo, of a couple standing in front of a store's metal grating and the guy wearing a T-shirt with the image of a gun pointing at the girl's head, is one of Jill Freedman's best. According to an account in yesterday's New York Times, Mr. Pesa, who was wearing the T-shirt, simply wanted to meet the photographer. "I wanted to thank her for immortalizing me," he said.

Read the entire story.

Wednesday, May 07, 2008

NYC to Wedding Shooters: Pay Up or Get Out

Is New York City about to put wedding photographers out of business? It seems that way: The City Council wants wedding photographers to submit a $5,000 bond, get a license, and fill out burdonsome paperwork, according to a law that the Council will discuss today at 10:00 AM. If you refuse to get a license, you will be fined $1,000-$5,000 every time you break the law, i.e, photograph a wedding.

Way to send wedding photographers packing for the suburbs, New York!

Read the whole pathetic proposal.

Israel at 60!

Here's a picture in celebration of Israel's 60th birthday, shot in 1977 at the Maccabiah ("Jewish Olympics") opening ceremonies at Ramat Gan stadium.

Visit IL77 for more photos I took of Israel.

Yom Holedet Sameach, Yisrael (Happy Birthday, Israel!)

Tuesday, May 06, 2008

Attack of the Terror Tripods!

Scott Kelby, editor/publisher of Photoshop User and Layers magazine, was waylaid by a hotel security guard in New York city because he and his friends were carrying tripods back to their hotel rooms after doing a shoot at Grand Central Station (where they had a permit to shoot using tripods).

I must tip my hat to the hotel guard for his vigilant alertness and swift action. Imagine the unspeakable horror that could have happened had these tripods actually been used for something like, oh, taking pictures. Wait a sec--they were coming back from a shoot. Never mind...

Read this head-shaker.

More communities should do this!

Ventura, California, is running free darkroom demonstrations geared towards kids. "Kids in the Darkroom - Photography the Old-Fashioned Way." They're going to take a photo with a large-format camera, develop the film, and make a big print. The hope is that kids will see the magic of a print appearing in the Dektol and be changed for life.

Sounds like a good idea. Any photographers want to open their darkrooms to groups of kids and give a demonstration? You never know what you might start!

Here's the article in the Ventura County Star.

Just like old times

Remember when you could rent a darkroom for a small hourly fee? Most of those facilities are gone, but don't tell Chris Fuller of Bellingham, Washington. Fuller just opened The Darkroom, a gallery space and darkroom rental facility, and plans to show the work of local photographers in the front while offering hourly black-and-white photoprocessing space for up to three people at once in the back. Fuller also plans to teach people how to use the darkroom.

Is this the start of a revival trend? Here's hoping!

Read the whole story in the Bellingham Herald.

Sunday, May 04, 2008

A Street Photographer newbie's interesting thoughts

Mitch Alland, a recent convert to street photography, has written a thoughtful article on the subject on his blog, The Online Photographer. Good stuff, debatable thoughts such as his feeling that you need a project in order to be a better street photographer. Not how I learned it. My motivation is to see what things look like photographed, in black and white, and how the framed two-dimensional image freezes and transforms a moment.

Of course, it has to be interesting, and there has to be a tension between the form and content of the image. Visit his site to see some really good work.

In any case, this is a good read, as are the reader comments at the end.