I have a confession to make. I shot a wedding two weeks ago…and…and I liked it. I used to hate shooting weddings because I felt like everybody would just be like “oh Mike has one of them nice cameras, have him shoot our wedding” and then I would just be a paid monkey and shoot what everybody else wanted me to shoot. My friend Chris called me a few months ago and asked me to shoot his wedding, and he mentioned that they wanted me to because of my documentary and portrait work. They just wanted me to do what I do. I went to Maryland, did what I did and boy let me tell you, the photos are good and I had a great time. I think I used to have too much of an ego to shoot weddings. I thought I was too cool because I was a documentary photographer or something. I don’t want to be a wedding photographer only ( I couldn’t handle THAT much sappiness) but it is definitely something I am going to do going forward. I feel like most photographers I know shoot weddings but wont admit to it for fear of being blackballed by the art/editorial establishment. I’m over it.
So, that being said, if you want a wedding photographer that isn’t a douchey “wedding” photographer, I may be your guy.
A couple weeks ago I went to the east coast to photograph a friends wedding in Maryland and then head up to NYC for some meetings and general schmoozing. The whole trip was a crazy whirlwind of redeye flights, couch surfing (thanks keith and linda), good whiskey and lots of sweat. I was in the city to do the whole “meet with a bunch of photo editors and kiss their ass” thing so I was hauling around my beautiful but slightly cumbersome custom portfolio that Tyler Estrem made for me. Then, for some reason, I thought it would be a good idea to bring my Mamiya 7 along for the meetings in a shoulder bag so I could street shoot in between. The thing I forgot to factor in was not having a second hand free to focus so I ended up just racking my camera to infinity and sort of shooting a lot of buildings and other things. Not my usual style but I don’t think I really had the focus or energy to get out and shoot for real. That being said, I feel like I got some neat stuff anyways.
These are super super super crappy scans. Like shoot yourself in the face crappy. I am in the market for a new scanner but in the mean time, deal with it.
“First, let’s address what I believe may be pronoun issues. You think our First Amendment protects us from their mosque, when in reality the First Amendment protects their mosque from us.”—Jon Stewart (about Presidential candidate Herman Cain’s comments denouncing a proposed mosque in Murfreesboro, Tenn.)
I hate the rite-aid across the street from my house. It is a joyless soul sucking experience to have to walk through those doors. In response to this, I am making a zine with Josh Taylor about it called “the most depressing place on earth”. It will feature photos shot by me, a short story by Nick Neihart and text and illustrations by Josh Taylor. Here are the first photos I have shot for it. I think you get the point.
A long time ago when I first moved to Utah, I became friends with a bunch of ski bums that lived in the house next door to my apartment. One of them was named Evan Lewendoski and he boy was he something. Evan managed to quit and start more jobs in the first year I knew him than I thought was humanly possible. The amount of paperwork he did filling out tax forms that year probably desecrated a small forrest. All appearances seemed to point to Evan being directionless. Around the same time, he started getting in to wine. We all thought this was strange, being that pretty much all you drink as a ski bum/ college kid is beer. I remember being underaged and Evan coming home, opening a bottle of wine, pouring me a glass and then talking my ear off about something called “flavor notes”. He was too kind because that wine was totally wasted on my 20 year old taste buds.
Fast forward 5 or 6 years and he really did something about his passion. In that time he has worked at wineries in Australia, France, Italy, Argentina and California. In between these stints he always come back to Utah for a while and our friendship picks up where it left off. Hearing Evan talk about wine gets me excited. His passion for white wine blows my mind. He is excited about every step of the way and the ways he wants to go about making it are incredibly creative. He has spent the last few years working at biodynamic wineries and his dream is to start a winery in Utah.
Yesterday he called me and informed me he was moving to California again for a few months. I had gotten my hopes up that he would stay in Utah this time for good but of course, that would not be the case. We drove his astro van (yes, astro van)
out to the land he found by Utah Lake that he thinks is the perfect spot for the type of grapes he wants to grow. I got my shoes covered in thorns and Evan dug up some dirt to look at it. We then got a milkshake at Daley Freeze, came home and said our goodbyes for the umpteenth time. He’s a selfish bastard for leaving so much but he makes such good wine I’ll forgive him.
Here are a few polaroids I shot out there as a few digi photos.