January 20, 2012

Grand Memories: A Man Who Taught Me Photography

Well, I'm nervous now...

Nervous, because I've never seen it 'live' and blown-up... Despite the common belief among many of my friends, who think I should be feeling rather comfortable in front of a camera - I'm not, really... I'm a rather shy person. I'm better behind the camera, rather than - in front of it. And the only time that I was actually comfortable is when I was working with my friend, Brian Glover... who just emailed me saying that he wants to work with me again.


I got an email from an old friend of mine who used to be my closest friend, mentor, partner-in-crime - [a.k.a. my photography teacher and film critic] - when I used to live in Los Angeles in 2001. His name is Brian Glover, an acclaimed photographer from Chicago, who has been making Hollywood and indie films in Los Angeles for the last 40 years, if not longer...


I've always truly adored this man, who is not only a very talented film-maker and photographer, but also is a very good person. When we've met on the set of the movie - [yes, there are still not enough details of my life that even my close friends don't necessary know] - where I worked as an AD, or in "Hollywood terms", a Director's Assistant to Bruce Schwartz on a film "Cathedral". Back in 2002, when we filmed it - [and yes, I did work with James Eckhouse, remember Beverly Hills 90210?, and Mark Rolston from The Shawshank Redemption, who used to call me "Sweetie" for making sure they always have hot freshly made coffee on the set] -  Brian and I instantly became friends. He became like father-figure to me.

We used to talk endlessly about films, film making, photography over some great Thai food at a restaurant that became OUR place for the after-movie-screenings intellectual conversations...He was the first one to really teach me how to shoot black and white photography - [before we've met, I only had a year of photography classes in college...] He told me about how it was like working with this and that famous actor - [he made more than 100 films in Hollywood] - and he told me about his life experiences and great  - [and odd] - people he's met in Hollywood...It was an absolute feast for my mind and soul - I was learning a lot...

 
 


As a matter of fact, he just celebrated his 40 years in photography, which - again - I had to miss! This is so unfair.

Brian wrote to me that I'd be - [or rather photographs of me] - in his book. He wrote to me that he missed working with me and that more collaborations to come. He wrote to me that I was one of his favorite 'models' - collaborators -photo-colleagues... I did feel very honored, how could I not?

The first time he showed me his photo studio, I was amazed by his big collection of the cameras. Even up until today, he prefers to photograph with an old-school camera. I'm not joking...See,this is the camera he shoots with:


He's always made me proud, and I kept thinking that one day, some day, I'd be able to see our collaborative work at one of his exhibitions...but I didn't leave up to that day. Meaning, I left Los Angeles. I came back to New York City.  And you can imagine how sad I was when I had to miss two of his photo exhibitions in the last few years, which had our work! I was so damn proud of working with him and being able to contribute to his photographs. He later told me that a few images that he took of me were sold to private collectors...

I wonder where Am I now? Who has those priceless photos?

 

Here's a thing - I could never pose. I do not like to pose. I have to be very comfortable with whoever takes my photos. Yes, we can all make silly faces, pout our mouths, tweak our eyes... But this is no near close to the real 'posing' of non-posing...This brings me to mentioning once again, why I'm fascinated by street photography - capturing the real people in real situations - it's an art...

Have you noticed that the best photos are those when a person is not posing? Of course, there is commercial photography vs. - any other...And commercial photographers want the models to pose like they don't pose...So, when I see great photos in the fashion magazines, I do appreciate the collaborative work between the photographers and models, because I know first-hand what it takes to 'not pose'...

I've learned about the appeature and shutter speeds, playing with the movement and shadows...I've learned a lot from Brian.


The reason I'm actually telling you all this is that Brian wrote to me again that he actually made some blow-ups of our work and will send it to me...I'm very excited! And for what is worth it, I'm holding on to the priceless images that I kept from our a decade long work together. Those memories are grand, and I thank my dearest friend, Brian Glover, for that and for inspiring me even more to do photography...

Me and Brian outside our after-the-movies-conversations Thai restaurant...I miss those times! (Taken in 2007 - 5 years later after our very first artistic collaboration in 2001. In 2007 I came  back to Los Angeles to study journalism at University of California Los Angeles (UCLA))

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