Sunday, December 26, 2010
Awhile back I worked on this piece for the American Cancer Society. It profiles those who have stayed at or had connections with the American Cancer Society's Hope Lodges, a comforting, supportive place to reside while patients receive their treatment. It really was an emotional experience meeting everyone. Compared to what they had already gone through, having a photograph taken was really not a big deal.
Tuesday, December 21, 2010
Tuesday, December 14, 2010
Thursday, December 2, 2010
I have been MIA for sometime and I apologize to those who visit this blog. I have been busy doing a wide range of work including this project for the Union Rescue Mission in Los Angeles. I have also begun shooting some video which has both been exciting and challenging.
These photos were taken at "Hope Gardens" which helps women and their children get through difficult circumstances.
It was really nice to visit my former home and reconnect with old friends.
Tuesday, October 5, 2010
When I did my first "Uniques" book with blurb, I was surprised that the total cost for a 12x12 copy was almost $100.00, making it a serious decision for a book of photographs.
Well the good news is it is now available in a 7x7 version in both soft and hardcover. ($39/$27)
Here is the link.
Thursday, September 30, 2010
Finally, the book is done and on Blurb's Website.
A day later, I learned that Blurb reviewed it and named it their "Book of the Week". Here is the link to the announcement:
Blurb Book of the Week
Sunday, September 26, 2010
Last Friday I was working with the Community Housing Development Corporation, shooting at a housing development made up primarily of Somali Families. Typically I am met with a great deal of reluctance when trying to make photographs in this situation. The opposite was true on Friday. In fact, on my way to my car I was followed out, as more people were trying to become photo subjects. I, happily, unpacked my gear and shot some more. Nice problem to have.
Tuesday, September 21, 2010
This Thursday night I will be giving a talk at the Minneapolis Photo Center about doing photography for nonprofits. Here is the link and it is also pasted below.
The Value of Working with Nonprofit Organizations
September 23, 2010, 7:00 PM - 9:00 PM @ MPC
Working for non-profits has advantages beyond the good feeling you get by helping others. This market is often over-looked and is in desperate need of good photography. The work is rewarding, allows for creative freedom, and doesn't have to mean no-profit for the photographer. Scott Streble will cover a variety of topics surrounding photographing for nonprofit organizations - from finding clients to working in sensitive situations.
Working for primarily nonprofit concerns, Scott Streble’s assignments have taken him throughout the United States as well as to Latin America, Europe, Africa and the Caribbean. Scott is best known for his documentary photographs of people, using an approach through which he is able to portray his subjects with beautiful realism, honesty, and dignity. Scott has worked with leading domestic and international non-profit organizations including Doctors Without Borders, Red Cross, Habitat for Humanity, American Cancer Society, Children's Hospital and The Salvation Army. Scott’s work has been exhibited throughout the United States and he received a Kodak purchase award for his work with Doctors Without Borders. In 2004 and 2008, Scott was awarded a grant from the Family Housing Fund for his photographic work of the homeless and Veterans.
View Scott’s work at www.ScottStreble.com
The Streble talk is free to all Mpls Photo Center members and $10 for guests/$5 for students. Please RSVP to: Lectures@MplsPhotoCenter.com
Thursday, September 16, 2010
Rescue Missions are full of signs. Some are inspirational and others assert rules. Rules, of course, are necessary in a place where so many desperate people are just trying to survive. Rules are also the big reason why some chose not to be there.
I have been paying attention to the signs and will post them occasionally. Just for the record, it is rare for a mission not to serve "seconds". Usually the food is served until it is gone.
Tuesday, September 14, 2010
Often, I am alerted by friends, clients, colleauges about photo oppurtunities that I might find interesting. It's nice to have people looking out for me. I was told that the Womens' New York Rugby team was to be playing here in Minneapolis and asked if I might be interested in doing photos of the players. I set up near the pitch (rugby for field) and took these quick portraits.
Sunday, September 12, 2010
Last week, I drove to Milwaukee to work with the Milwaukee Rescue Mission. Wisconsin has adopted the school voucher program, where parents are given the funding to send their kids to any school, public or private. The Milwaukee Rescue Mission which is housed in a former school, decided to open it's own school. It is attended by both children who stay in the shelter with their mothers and others from the neighborhood. It makes for a nice energy.
Friday, September 10, 2010
Embarrassingly, it's been a solid month since my last blog post. In that time I have shot 15 assignments...homeless shelters, dental schools, weddings, hospitals.... and have not been good about keeping the blog up-to-date. As time marches on I become uncertain about how to catch up and start to feel over-whelmed.
I am sitting on this bag of work and I have decided to let it slowly leak out in reverse chronology beginning with the assignment I shot today for St Paul Academy. SPA, has engaged teachers and students, which makes it easy for me. Frequently, I find myself in shoots where I must encourage interaction to get results. At SPA it is happening everywhere.
Monday, August 9, 2010
Friday, August 6, 2010
I'm in the middle of a nice string of assignments. Last week I was in York, PA and Baltimore, MD working for local missions.
Whenever possible, I will ask permission before I photograph someone. The people were all so very kind and most everyone worked with me allowing me to make the photos.
When I am able to do similar projects like this together, the work becomes more fluid. A rhythm or beat develops. Having to carry my gear all day long, it is very important that it is accessible and becomes second-nature. This then allows me to be able to focus on the people. (no pun intended). That is what really matters.
Next week I will travel to Raleigh/Durham for work at another Mission and for the Salvation Army.
Wednesday, July 14, 2010
Last Friday, I shot this minutes before the ceremony on a beautiful summer evening.
The moments just before the wedding are filled with a great deal of emotion...often times more than the ceremony itself. Here, from a 2nd story window, the bride watches her guests arrive and take their seats. Once the ceremony begins you can feel a sense of relief and calm take over.
Thursday, July 1, 2010
After tabulating the vote results for the cover of my "Uniques" book ...the Twins won, but it was so very close. Only 3 votes separating the top 2. Seems fitting, being from Minnesota, that it was the Twins that came out ahead.
Three of the images received 75% of the total votes. Many expressed difficulty in choosing just one and it was even suggested that I should have had runoff voting. (A good idea Jean). Some even opted to vote for 2 images, in which case I split the vote.
Thanks for all who helped with your opinions and insightful comments. I learned new things about the photos that had never occurred to me.
After the Holiday break, I will finish up the book and get it on-line...will keep you posted.
Sunday, June 27, 2010
Found myself working for Nordstrom at the Mall of America shooting a fashion show. It was a benefit for Starkey Foundation who I have worked with in the past.
I have not shot a fashion show since the old days back in LA. It certainly is a different world than the one I find myself in, but I must concede that it was a visual feast.
Friday, June 25, 2010
Tuesday, June 22, 2010
I am finally getting around to self-publishing a blurb book of my unique series and and need help in choosing a cover. In the past I have spoken about the difficulty I have in objectively editing my images, because of the experiences I have with the subjects. Someone might be kind and friendly causing me to increase the photo value of their image. Conversely, someone might arrive late, try to micro-direct the photo or just be plain rude and I automatically think less of their image.
Here is a selection of images that I feel are cover-worthy. Please leave your vote in the comment section of the email. or if you prefer, send me an email with your choice. (They are numbered 1-6 below each image) Next Tuesday June 29th, I will tally the results and choose the cover. Thanks....and remember vote early and often :)
Sunday, June 20, 2010
A few alternative-wedding photos I took yesterday. Although I now shoot only a small group of select weddings every year, I have shot over 1200 weddings total and I strive to find new ways to "see" them. Even if it means shooting an image of a smoking bride. It is a hard to beat a cigarette as a visual accessory.
Friday, June 11, 2010
The significance of something as simple as a family portrait made itself clear to me last week. I was asked by to photograph John and his first Grandchild, Magnolia who is 6 months old. John is suffering from prostate cancer which is in stage four. He clearly savors every moment he has with his family. Because I know the value that is placed on these photos, it was both emotional and honor to make them.
Wednesday, June 9, 2010
Graduations are always exciting, emotional times...making them great photo opportunities. Working for the Minneapolis School District, I shot the Wellstone International High School Graduation this past Tuesday. Named after Senator Paul Wellstone, this High School is designed to serve students with limited English language skills. They offer accelerated English Language development coupled with a high school curriculum.
Even though many of the graduate's parents were not able to understand the words spoken at the ceremony, the pride clearly displayed on their faces made it obvious that they understood it's importance.
Thursday, May 27, 2010
Tim Donahue and Charlie Henrickson make up the Eclectic Ensemble, an ambient experimental music group. They're a client of Springboard for the Arts who has me photographing a wide-range or groups that they serve. Tim & Charlie rode up on trailer-pulling bikes to play on the Martin Sabo which carries the Midtown Greenway bike path over Hiawatha Avenue. Their rigs are amazing, transporting everything they need to perform, including their own power (solar).
I had to dash off, so I didn't have the chance to hear them play for more than a moment...but what I did catch was really interesting stuff on many levels. They play again tonight at 7pm at the same place. Check them out. Eclectic Ensemble
Thursday, May 20, 2010
Since the date of my last post (April 29th...oop) I have been churning out the assignments. Shot 18 of the past 20 days. It is a pretty safe assumption that when posts are few...work is plentiful.
It has been a good variety. From shooting at a Somali Mall, Buddhist Temple & Mexican Consulate for Blue Cross to shooting kids for the Minneapolis Public School District. Mixed within that, has been work for Bethel University, Walker Senior Homes, Children's Hospital, and Target foundation.
A good, positive momentum starts to occur just by the sheer volume of shooting. It starts to feel easy and "seeing" the photos becomes clear. I've taken advantage of this energy by looking for other things to shoot... free portraits for the neighbors, personal work...photos are everywhere. Anyone need a photo? I'm on a roll, but you better hurry...this isn't going to last forever and my finger is going to need a rest.
Tuesday, April 27, 2010
Some more images from my trip to Tucson a few weeks ago. A good productive shoot, although a quick trip. I flew in on a red eye flight. shot the next day and flew out on another red eye that same night.
A mission shoot involves two parts: Shooting within the mission, showing the clients and services and then shooting outside the mission to try and capture "the need" for the services provided by the mission. For the outside, street work, I try and find a person (called a fixer) who can guide me to areas where there are people to shoot and hopefully give me access to these people. Mike, my fixer, was excellent. He had recently come off the streets into the Mission program and knew, and more importantly was liked by everyone. This made my work very simple. Getting the access is really the hard part and makes all the difference.
On another note, I did not make the final cut for the McKnight fellowship, which is a bummer. I'll try again next year.
Saturday, April 24, 2010
I love working at Bethel University. When I began my career I liked to think that I could take on any job and acted accordingly. As I gained experience, I learned what I was good at and then slowly tried to find clients that matched this same thing. Bethel University is one of those clients.
Thursday, April 22, 2010
Over the weekend, I did some photography for Alliance Housing's Annual report. Alliance housing rehabs old houses and apartment buildings to use as low income housing. Often using its' own residents as workers. I have several clients who do work in this area and most have strict guidelines that must be followed in order to obtain housing. (drug testing, a job...) Alliance housing's only requirement is a fundamental one: " You can have no outstanding warrants." Their thinking is to get people off the street, out of shelters and into housing. Things can only get better from there. I agree.
Tuesday, April 13, 2010
Another Senior shoot...this time at Good Samaritan in Stillwater. It is interesting how many of the seniors really don't like their photos when they view it on the camera. Coming to grips with becoming old must be difficult. I know their families will appreciate the photos. I also know from experience...if you don't like your photo now...let a little time pass...it will get better as you get older.
On a side note..I am liking the impact that the photos have in mass like this. Maybe this can be a series in itself.
Sunday, April 11, 2010
At most every homeless shelter I have worked there is the person who is rumored to be rich. He is said to be at the shelter, not because he doesn't have the means, but because he prefers to be there. The other residents will come up to me and secretly whisper, "see that guy over there...he is rich...he owns houses.."
John is that person at the Gospel Rescue Mission in Tucson where I worked this past Thursday. John told me he was a lawyer for 53 years. He has limited use of his legs and slowly gets around using a walker. I am not sure what has caused John to arrive at the Mission, but I can't imagine he, or anyone, would chose to be there. I think having "the story" helps other residents cope with the situation.
The day of shooting was a success from an image production standpoint. More importantly it gave me a lesson in keeping things in perspective.
More to come from this shoot...
Wednesday, April 7, 2010
Saturday, April 3, 2010
It's that time of the year again to apply for the annual McKnight fellowship for Photography. The McKnight is one of the most prestigious fellowships and therefore one of the most difficult to win. It was actually due yesterday and I somehow managed to get the application in at 4:58pm (deadline 5pm). I've applied almost every year since I have moved here from San Francisco almost 9 years ago. Maybe this year be the the one. Having the hope while you await the results is a beautiful thing...so full of possibilites. Maybe I should buy a lottery ticket too.
Amber is one of the images I submitted with my application.
Tuesday, March 30, 2010
I shot this woman's photo many years ago when I worked in Los Angeles. I wish I could remember her name, but I have not forgotten her kind, caring face. It was taken near downtown LA in MacArthur Park for St Vincent's Medical Center, who cares for her. She used to work as a seamstress and still wears the scissors.
Sunday, March 28, 2010
I met Amanda Leaveck when she came to my studio to be a part of my Unique Series. She is leading a group of young people in a great cause called "Face Forward". They are working to improve education in third world countries and are hosting a fund-raising event at First Avenue, here in Minneapolis on April 14th. I think it is a great idea...getting young people involved in a great cause by having them participate in something that is of interest to them...just makes sense.
Here is a link:
Originally the thought was to use some of the "Unique" series faces to help advertise/promote the event. We eventually decided it would be better to photograph some "new" faces specifically for the "Face Forward" project.
The group of faces appears to have a certain "sameness" to them on first glance. It is not until you look closely that the differences reveal themselves. We are all alike yet different at the same time.
Wednesday, March 24, 2010
Saturday, March 20, 2010
Jonathan came to my studio about a year ago to be part of my "Unique" series. While filing some images, I came upon the treasure trove of images from that shoot. Jonathan performed the straight jacket escape multiple times for my camera. Makes me wish I had been taking notes just in case I find myself in a predicament requiring the knowledge to perform this feat. Never mind the fact that I don't possess the necessary flexibility.
Tuesday, March 16, 2010
For the past five weeks, I have been teaching a "Photographing People" class for Southwest Community Education here in Minneapolis. Over the past five years, I have taught a variety of classes and it has always been an enlightening experience. Explaining my thought process to my photography along with viewing the student work makes me look at and evaluate my own work. It ends up making me a better shooter. Wish I had time to do more teaching.
Sunday, March 14, 2010
Wednesday, March 10, 2010
I have always been visually attracted to public bathrooms. The clean lines, repetitive shapes and admittedly the idea that you are really not suppose to be taking photos in one. That being said, I have done this many times, always hoping someone would not walk in (or out of a stall) wondering what I am doing. This would be hard to explain.
Monday, March 8, 2010
I have put together a book of 62 images from the "Unique" series. It is being bound in Italy and I should have it in about 8 weeks. Finally, having them all in one volume will be nice. I will also put together a blurb version if anyone wishes to get a copy.
Friday, March 5, 2010
It was the second time I have been to the Morningstar Mission in Joliet, IL. I previously worked there about a year ago. Saw some of the same faces as before, along with some new ones. Having familiarity with the people and surroundings can be a benefit.
This type of work requires me to both earn the trust of people while at the same time being "on-guard" just in case. For me, the tension that is felt trying to maintain this balance has always been good a good spot for me to work.
Wednesday, March 3, 2010
Working all day and then going to school at night has got to be difficult. That is what many of these students do at Bethel University. On top of that we are asking them to sit for a photo. To me, it is surprising that they all seem so happy. (Maybe it is because they are getting a break from class for the photo?)