Monday, April 30, 2012

What Does This Picture Mean?

Thomas Hoepker, Young People on the Brooklyn Waterfront on September 11, 2001 (Magnum)

It means everything.  

It means nothing.  

Like every photograph ever taken, it means exactly what you think it means.

Simple, right?

Apparently not.  (Look here; and here; and here; and here; and here; and here; and here.)

Friday, April 27, 2012

San Francisco

Fisherman's Wharf, 2011

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

San Francisco

Fort Mason, 2011

Monday, April 23, 2012


Hommage a Blake Andrews, Fort Mason, 2011

Really?  Gone?

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Lauren Simonutti (1968-2012)

Lauren Simonutti, Time Out of Joint, 2011

Rest in peace.

(Her blog was here; Colin Pantall has a nice appreciation here.)

Friday, April 20, 2012

San Francisco

Geary Boulevard, 2010

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

San Francisco

Geary Boulevard, 2011

The very best bar in San Francisco. (Speaking of social media.)

Monday, April 16, 2012

Mr. Social

George LeChat, George LeChat, 2006

I must be some kind of recluse.

No Facebook. No Twitter. No Tumblr. No Flickr. No nothing at all. (Except this blog, which is obviously not what you'd call social.)

I've been reading a lot lately about social media and art. What's the connection? Branding, mainly, and the many opportunities to enhance your status as an artist by doing so.

I just don't care. In fact, I really dislike the whole thing.

What kind of person actually wants to be a follower? (And who, for that matter, would want followers like that?)

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Gray City

Green Street, 2011

Monday, April 09, 2012

Gray City

North Beach, 2011

Saturday, April 07, 2012


Robert Bechtle, Alameda Gran Torino, 1974

Some people just don't like skeuomorphs.

I recently exchanged a couple of emails with Joerg Colberg on that subject. Colberg dislikes online photobooks that look like books. “I get it,” he says, “it’s a book. But my computer screen doesn’t have pages, and I don’t need to see fake pages being turned.”

I don’t entirely disagree. I can’t stand the iCal app in Lion, for example, with that faux leather border. Or the tacky varnished plywood bookshelves in iBooks.

But I don’t mind the page-turning animation in iBooks. And I don’t mind the page-turning animation on Issuu, which is what prompted my conversation with Colberg in the first place. (I’ve published a photobook on Issuu. It's not perfect, but I like it okay.)

I don't think page-turning animation qualifies as a skeuomorph anyway. For one thing, it’s more than merely ornamental. How, otherwise, would you present a photobook with pictures on facing pages? You’ve got to advance the pages. Some kind of mechanism is required, whether it's pages that slide or pages that fade or pages that turn.

Still, I understand the objection to it. It’s just not an authentic form of digital presentation. But I'm not sure how to do it better.

Any ideas? (You can send me an email here.)

Thursday, April 05, 2012

San Francisco

Greenwich Street, 2011

Tuesday, April 03, 2012

San Francisco

Pacific Street, 2011