Thursday, October 6, 2011


    The rain finally stopped yesterday. I took advantage of the sunshine and went on a photo shoot around the apple orchard in the next town over. I owed the woman who owns the place two dollars from a few weeks back when I bought pumpkins and doughnuts and was short, so I paid it back and bought another half dozen. Apple batter doughnuts. Absolutely to die for.

I fell in love with this incredibly tired apple tree behind the owner's house.

    Later on I went for a drive with my father to scope out a nice spot to take some farewell photos of his BMW 528i. He recently acquired his dream car, an M5, and the 528i is going away tomorrow morning. I really love that car, I'll miss it when it's gone.

    On the way back, we passed the railroad bed-turned-dirt bike trail on my street and the light was coming through the trees so beautifully I had to have him stop the car:

     My crazy work weekend is about to start tomorrow. I'm pulling doubles hosting instead of hosting then prep in the kitchen so I won't be getting out two or three hours after I'm supposed to for a change. I'm working on having Matthew come up Sunday night and then go to the fair with me on Monday but I haven't heard if he's gotten the day off yet. I haven't seen him in so long and I would love nothing more than to spend a day getting fat on fried dough with him.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011


Dear rain,
    It's four days into October, my favorite month, and it has yet to stop raining. I want to be outdoors on my days off, taking walks, picking apples, going to the fair, and taking so many photos that my batteries die and I run out of film. The brook that runs through my yard looks like rapids, and having skylights on the house make the rain seem that much louder. I happened to be awake for a few minutes around 6 am and heard some very impressive thunder, but I've had enough. Rain: stop it. I have plans to go to the Topsfield Fair tomorrow and you. will. not. mess. it. up.
    Thank you.

    In other news, I needed to go up to work yesterday to pick up a blank check for some supplies for a project they're having me do at home. Afterward, I roamed around my college campus for a while. I picked up a ticket for the upcoming John Sexton lecture in November (!) and went down to the photo labs to talk to my professors. Being down there, and smelling the chemicals from the dark room made me nostalgic. I told Bev and Gary what I've been up to, and how I'm planning to re-vamp the project I started last fall. Bev seemed optimistic which gave me a boost of confidence to really get myself back into it. I loved the project when I first started it but time would not have allowed for me to finish it during school. Now if only the damn rain would stop...

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

It's nearly October...

      This summer flew by. I spent most of August and all of September working excessive hours at the restaurant. I started working in the kitchen and earned myself a few stupid injuries, the worst of which were a splatter burn from the fryer and a generous chunk currently missing from my right thumb from an accident with a mandolin (the kitchen tool, not the instrument).
      I shot a couple hundred photos on an antiquing adventure up in Maine a few weeks ago and it felt great. I need to update my website's "Miscellaneous" gallery with some of the better ones.
      It was upsetting at the beginning of the month watching all the new students arrive at the Institute. The restaurant sits pretty much in the center of the "campus" so I watched people moving between the school buildings, their dorms, and the new, makeshift dining hall in the shopping plaza across the way. It made me wish for a week or two that I could be right back there, taking classes and absorbing more information, but at the same time I'm glad to be out. I keep imagining what it would be like to go back and start all over again, especially with the knowledge I have now. In retrospect, there's a lot I would change, but I can't waste time daydreaming about something like that.
      My Mom, Aunt and Uncle are working on selling my Grandpa's house in Andover. I was recruited back in July to photograph his home for real estate purposes. The pictures were posted online and in several area newspapers, and they've had an open house and everything since then, but they haven't had any bites. It's an out-dated house though, and I suspect the much newer, much larger houses in the development behind it may have something to do with it's lessened curb-appeal.

      I hope for my family's sake the place sells soon. As depressing are the circumstances that lead us all to this position, it's such a burden to everyone, especially the maintenance required to keep the house in tip-top shape should any potential buyers come through. 

Just a few more shots from the last couple of months..

Michael feeding a cow behind Beans & Greens farm stand in Gilford, NH.

 An antique native statue in front of Barnard's Tavern-turned (closed) antique shop in Kennebunk, ME.

The Johnson Hall Museum, or should I say a hoarder's wonder emporium, in Wells, ME.

      Yankee Magazine did an article on Bill Johnson, the man who owns this bizarre place, in their September issue. My friend and I hadn't known about it before stumbling across it on our adventure, and we surely won't forget it anytime soon.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Farm Exposure

  I met up with Matthew for lunch today up in Manchester. We ate pizza and shared our thoughts on isolation and inspiration. He seems to be in a similar rut, but at least he's still creating. We've come to the same difficult conclusion as well, that we feel the best up here in this city - inspired and at home.
  I have work at the restaurant this evening at 5 (KISS is in town and it's going to be chaos so they've called everyone in) and I thought it foolish to bother driving all the way back home after lunch only to have to turn around in a few hours, so here I am at the school library. I just finished developing three rolls of black and white 120 film downstairs and it felt go great to be back in my element. My dad notified me that my color film finally came in the mail today so that will be quite a treat when I get home tonight.
  Since the film I've just developed won't be ready for another half hour or so, the following are a few of the double exposures I shot with my Holga at Dargoonian Farms before Grandpa passed away.

  I purposely set the camera incorrectly, allowing the frames to overlap, resulting in the bars at the side of several of the images. I set out to corrupt my typical desire for perfect images, and instead tried to capture the repetition so present inside the greenhouses, set against the cracked earth and machinery out in the fields.

Monday, July 11, 2011

I'm lost.

  I've been out of college for near two months now and I'm no closer to starting my professional life than I am to once and for all cleaning up the residual crap from moving back home out of the basement. I feel totally lost and cut off from everyone I was once close with. My three best girlfriends seem to have forgotten me, yet still see each other, and my best guy friend is still up in Manchester, where I wish I was. I feel like I'm sixteen again, living at home, having my parents give me the fifth-degree every time I walk out the door: "Where are you going? How long will you be out? Don't stay out too late! Who will you be with? What are you doing?" I'm going out of my mind with the exact kind of claustrophobia I feared I would be subject to.
  I want so badly to get back into my craft but I find myself rationalizing my lack of effort towards it at every turn. Between working two part-time jobs, one that I hate immensely, and one that I'm starting to dislike, I don't feel up to breaking out my camera when I get home because I'm so damn tired. (Matt told me on the phone tonight with mild surprise in his tone that he noticed how easily I fall asleep - I fell asleep Saturday at our friend's Harry Potter Marathon night, right in front of everyone, and I'm only now realizing how embarrassed I am by that.) I haven't honestly journaled since before graduation and I can't even begin to remember everything that's happened so I stay away from that, too, my second passion, because I know I can't make up for the massive gap in time.
  I bought a book called Origin of Inspiration: Seven Short Essays for Creative People and I'm hoping it will help me pull myself out of this hopelessly uninspired rut I've found myself in. I've really lost sight of what was once so important to me, and I truly believe this isolation in southern New Hampshire is the root of it all.

  I'm still waiting for my three rolls of color 120 film to be returned from the developing lab. I check the mailbox every day, thinking somehow that getting my photographs back might just be the spark I need.

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Set your sights on Paris.

  I graduated from college a month ago and things have been going slowly. I moved back home and I've been working at both the restaurant and the grocery store. After living next door to the restaurant for thirteen months, driving 25 minutes to work Friday thru Sunday is much more of a pain than I thought it would be. I desperately miss my apartment and the convenience that came with it but I can't afford it on my own. I never thought I would miss Manchester, but home is so unbelievably boring and there is nothing and no one around.

  As for finding a job in my field, I'm looking but I'm really not that invested in it. I'm more focused on saving up money to travel first. I don't want to get tied down here too soon, before I get to go out and explore the world. I'm hell-bent on getting to Paris before the end of the year. I just need to learn French first.

  Artistically, I'm in a funk right now. Since I moved home I've taken my dslr out of its bag once and I didn't actually use it. I've been obsessed with using my Holga and 120 Lomography color film. I sent three rolls out to be processed last week and I can't wait for them to come in. But Southern New Hampshire isn't really doing it for me anymore, making it that much more important that I travel elsewhere. Nothing here is inspiring me.

Friday, May 20, 2011

Two days...

For some reason I thought it was a good idea to delete all my posts a few nights ago..turns out it wasn't.

I'm graduating in two days and I'm so excited. It's been really amazing seeing my friends' and my own work progress over the last four years. We hung our senior show two weeks ago and it looks better than I could have imagined. This graduating class really put out some of the best work I've seen.

My professional website is up and running: I need to get some of my work posted as fast as possible since I'll be handing out my business cards at the Preview Party tomorrow night and I want people to actually be able to see my work if they visit the site.

In other news, it's been almost a month since Grandpa passed away. I started shooting double exposures at the farm with my Holga right before he passed and I haven't been able to put it down since. I took this photo three weeks before he passed and it's the last picture ever taken of him.

I thought I was completely burnt out photographically, but since I've been shooting film I've been so inspired. I guess it's the digital component that I've been straying from. Film slows me down and I concentrate so much more on my composition and lighting than I have been with my DSLR. I know I'll get back into the swing of it soon, but I definitely needed a break.