Penny and Sparrow // The Red Room @ Cafe 939 Boston

About two years ago I went to small show for Penny and Sparrow at an art house in Cambridge. There were about 20 folks there. It was a beautiful experience with banter between the artists and audience, personal stories, laughter, tears, and damn good music. Last weekend Andy and Kyle were back in Boston. This time to a sold out crowd with barely room to move in the back at The Red Room on Boylston. It was a beautiful experience with banter between the artists and audience, personal stories, laughter, tears, and damn good music.The lovely and hella talented Rose Cousins opened and helped close the evening.

I've seen a couple shows at The Red Room now and on Saturday night got to see the process from load-in to load-out since I got to tag along with Andy and Kyle for the evening. I was struck by how laid back and yet energized the hours before the show were. These were all professionals who had done their jobs hundreds, if not thousands, of times. And yet there was patience and detailed attention paid from the crew at The Red Room (Kyle and Rose talked about how it was the best their sound had felt in a while). Further, even though there was quite a bit on the line for Andy and Kyle (this was a larger crowd than expected; a chance for a lot of new fans to meet them and hear their music live), they were relaxed as they humbly went about the task of hurry up and wait.

The crowd may not have known it but as they entered the space they were in good hands. They were here for a good time and were not disappointed. I found myself smiling like a big dummy looking around. A few hours ago, this room was empty. And then a handful of committed artist came together, set up, and opened the doors for strangers to enter and participate in a humble, poignant event.

Below is a glimpse of the show from just off stage and between members of the crowd. Do yourself a favor the next time these fellas are in town; be a part of that crowd.



Location Scouting // I've Pretty Friends

Bumming around MIT the other day with the one and only Sara (that's not true, there are close to 47,000,000 people named Sara(h) on the planet...I would put money on her being in the top 10 though). Not surprisingly, MIT boasted lovely architecture, textures, and colors all around. We only got lost 2 or 3 times. Decent way to spend an evening.


ghost light's hamlet // support them local arts yo

I miss doing promotional work for theater companies. I've dabbled here and there since moving to Massachusetts but it was a good chunk of what I did in Houston and golly I loved it. These days I find myself more likely to be on stage. And while that's proven to be another fun and challenging creative outlet, I miss shooting live theatre. Light is constantly changing and beautiful pictures are painted in front of you at rapid speeds. At times it's like literal magic happens before your eyes. Such fun to be capturing the story as it unfolds in front of you.

I started hanging around this community theater troupe a couple years back and it's given me some of my closest - and I hope longest lasting - friendships in this season of my life. Most of their productions take place in a small space provided by the First Church in Marlborough. It's not much to speak of, the space is pretty much your typical fellowship hall/cafeteria/place for large groups to gather. But what these players accomplish in this space is surprising and remarkable. 

Hamlet is a tricky beast of a play and these talented folks have made it accessible and a joy to watch. I stopped in at this brush-up rehearsal before the play closes this weekend and I truthfully didn't have the intention of promoting the show, I just wanted to take some pictures of what my friends were up to. But I'd be remiss in not telling you to go see it. If you're local, you've no excuse -- it's free with a non-perishable food item. Only two more shows left this Saturday and Sunday (link below for more details).



dusting off and brushing up // personal work

I rarely use strobes or extra light sources if I can help it. This is mainly due to my laziness and unwillingness to try new things for fear of coming off like an idiot or not liking how the end result looks when I know I can usually get something I like with the light available.

This is dumb.

So, in effort to be better at things I'm decent at, I set up my old Alien Bees strobe, cranked the model lamp to the max and messed around with back/profile/and ye ol' 45º lighting of my non-make-up-ed/un-showered self. Here are a few I found interesting. Other than bumping the contrast a bit, these are straight from the camera.

Posting here to keep myself honest and to return to for ideas.


walk at dusk // thinking about work

There be a lot of thoughts jumping around in my head lately. Since moving to New England it's been hard to focus my attention on one creative outlet. I think I've made the mistake of thinking any one particular venture had to be exclusive, requiring my full attention or creative energy. And while it's certainly hard for me to focus on too many things at once (I want all the things to be good/worth everyone's while/done right) I've come to the realization that building community, no matter the outlet, should be the number one priority of that time spent. A photography client, theater company, student film, commercial work, when I'm behind the camera, when I'm in front of the camera -- the freedom to just create and build into the people I'm spending that time with is the most important "work." And I'm finding the more freely I give myself to these projects and the people involved in them, the more overlap there is and the more dense and layered the work is. And, ultimately, the more fulfilling the work is too.

relationships > accomplishments

I've been chewing on all these thoughts for a while now but just in the last few weeks and even in the last hour, as I took a walk at dusk with my son, these thoughts have really begun to sink (sync?) in to the hardwiring of my brain (at least I hope they have). I want this space on this here floundering blog to be more of an open journal of these relationships. My time spent creatively. Usually those are story-telling and narrative building projects. I'm not sure entirely what that means for this space (maybe it'll stay the same, maybe it'll look different) but I'd like to think I'll be here more.

In the meantime, as I continue to figure that out, here are some images from that walk I mentioned. About half of these shots were taken by my son (that was humbling/inspiring).

Here's hoping I grab my camera more as I walk out the door. And here's to pushing myself to share more of the creative stuff I'm working on, whatever shape those projects end up taking. Time to get rid of these categories and boxes I've done such a poor job trying keep tidy.

I'm embracing the mess, there's likely a reason behind it.