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Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Today's Levitation

There's a teenager in Japan, Natsumi Hayashi, a self-trained photographer who took a simple idea and ran with it. I love her photos for their simplicity and testament to hard-work and perseverance. She takes hundreds of photos jumping, trying to get just the right pose to make it appear as if she's actually levitating. Her work reminds me of the levitation in such films as "Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon" and "Hero".

Allen Murabayashi, of Photoshelter, had this to say about her and her work, and I totally agree: "lots of people take homage shots, but they’re just jumping in the air. They don’t levitate. They don’t jump 100 times for the perfect image. They don’t do it over the course of a few years to make it their own. She’s just a girl with a camera, and then all of a sudden she got a gallery show and a 5D, and I was really psyched for her. Her photos inspired me to levitate, and what could be a greater gift?"

Maybe her hard work will inspire to you go that extra step in pursuing your idea of a great photograph.Her work is here, enjoy.

Friday, March 16, 2012

Of Motorcycles, Moose, and Missiles

My Father, brother and I are all long-time motorcycle pilots, and while we've had an opportunity to ride pretty long distances one with the other, we've never all-three ridden together at all for any distance, as far as I can remember.
Soooo, one of my resolutions this year was to spur interest in a Long-Distance (LD) father/son motorcycle ride with just the three of us.
Initial ideas ran from the Grand Canyon, to California, to Prudhoe Bay Alaska (okay, that one was solely my idea and no one bit), riding the Gulf Coast, and Ozark Mtns.
But after only a few email exchanges, it became obvious where we must go:
Caribou, Maine.
Why here, at the most northeastern city in the US, deep thru the North Woods where the moose, black fly and jumbo mosquitoes lie?
Its a bit of a long story...
Without telling too much on my Dad, he met my Mom while stationed at a Nike Missile Base in New York in the early sixties. Soon after they were married, I was born and the next 50 years or so are history.
But, my Dad also had the option of being stationed in Caribou, Maine at a Missile base there. He chose New York because it was populated by more than the occasional Moose, but there's always been that "what if"?  Choice of location was a bit of a "Scylla and Charybdis" affair for my Dad, as he was born and raised in the Southeast, and I think having to choose between either Upstate NY or Maine was like having to choose between either getting an enema or having your teeth pulled without novocaine.
As the ride is partially in honor of my Dad's 70th birthday, and because he's probably mentioned Caribou, Maine after every marital spat, new kid, blizzard, or some other reason, every year since I can remember, we figured it was about time we went and checked this place out.
At this point, I've mapped out the final route, and it looks like we'll be doing about 3,000 miles (never touching I-95!) in about 10 days round trip, starting in mid-June. And we've thrown in a "side trip" to Quebec City to boot.
We hope to have the chance to visit one of the better preserved Nike Missile Base remnants while there, as well as take in the Maine Coastline. I plan to post the bulk of our trip day-by-day in June so you can follow along with us. More in June...