Lost and Found

My journey as a photographer has endured its share of bumps and bruises along the way. Though I had had a few images published and had my first paid gigs a few years before. I had very little knowledge of putting a cohesive portfolio together. I was a hobbyist and an enthusiast. One that had become passionate of the art, but had little grasp of how to get from A to B. Somewhere in my twenties, I picked up a second job working nights at an East Village record store. The owner, himself a published stock photographer became somewhat of a mentor, giving me the green light to build a portfolio from the continuous flow of interesting characters who came in the place. Good, bad or ugly, I was photographing and documenting much of my city life. Many, if not most of the people who took me up on my offer to use them as my instruments of creativity would meet me at a certain time and near place. I was more than happy to share prints with those who agreed to meet up. At the time, I was working with a very basic Nikon film SLR film camera that another boss gave me a few years before. While revisiting some old image files. I found a folder marked “slides”. I recall shooting almost exclusively with slide film at the time. While I don’t remember this particular woman’s name. I recall the session taking place within the lower east side’s Tompkins Square Park. In indulging myself in looking through old files. I’m surprised to find so many keepers.

All the Right Ingredients

Having worked with Iya numerous times during my years of shooting in my cramped Hoboken home studio. I’ve been eager to have her over to the Loft to close out my new portfolio in a much more open and for lack of a better word, lofty space. Having someone who was both a friend and an experienced model at my disposal initially felt like a no brainer. However, her inquiry regarding my providing a makeup artist and/or stylist threw me in to panic mode. And while having one of the industries best makeup by stephanie perez living in the adjacent loft went a long way to ease my tensions. Trying to book her only days in advance  was a bit of a challenge. In the end, the m.u.a’s assistant Karen not only stepped in. She amazed. As beautiful as Iya looked walking through my door. *&^%$% had her looking like an absolute goddess. Going forward as a photographer, I hope to incorporate the use of a make up artist and stylist. Knowing that I have such fantastic options at arms reach is very reassuring.I highly recommend you take s look at Satephanie’s site. I assure you, you’ll be inspired.
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Berd “Now and Then”


Last night I met up in Chelsea with Berd for some head-shots and tests. I met Berd in my Hell’s Kitchen days when she worked only a few blocks from me at the Virgin Mega- Store. At the time I was just starting work on my first portfolio. Most of my work and inspiration was coming from strangers I would approach. I had this crazy energy back then and was never afraid to engage complete strangers in conversation and ask that they pose for me. One day I was at the Virgin Mega-Store looking for some new tunes to wrap my ears around. As I twas riding  the escalator upstairs I noticed the most beautiful woman going in the opposite direction. I was in total awe. My head dropped while my jaw dropped further. No joking, her eyes were like none I had ever seen before. I was tempted to turn around and talk to her but for whatever reason I was gripped with anxiety and fear. When I got home I couldn’t help but think of missed opportunities. What if I would have just said “Hello”? Later that week I was back at Virgin looking for more music and alas, there she was. This time I approached and introduced myself. I told her I was working on my first portfolio and would love to photograph her. She probably thought “who the hell is this nut?” I probably came off like one. I remember telling her what beautiful eyes she had. She really did. Well, she agreed to get together as we shot some work at the community garden across the street from where I lived. I saw her a few times after and over time lost touch.  A few years later I ran into her in Chelsea. She had shaved her head but still looked as beautiful as ever. We spoke briefly and went our separate ways. We’d kept in touch through Facebook but last night was the first time I’d seen her since that brief encounter in Chelsea. I hate the phrase “Some things just get better with age.” But in this case the phrase fits like a glove. It’s hard to believe but Berd is even more beautiful today than she was back when I met her more than ten years ago. It was an absolute pleasure spending time and getting to know her all over again.