This essay originally appeared in my first book, Spiritual Wanderer.
My life is a struggle to make sense of things — enormous things and things like, “There’s a bathroom on the right.”
I’m referring, of course, to the Credence Clearwater Revival lyrics, which don’t have anything to do with plumbing. The line that’s so often misquoted is really, “There’s a bad moon on the rise.”
(First published 25 years ago)
I can’t really say why I went down to Haiti in the first place. Ron, a priest friend of mine, wrote and suggested I make the journey to see some places and faces that would fill a whole book. As every egocentric photographer knows, that’s all you really need to hear. What a jerky reason to go.
It’s good to not know what I’m doing.
My wife texted me on a recent Thursday afternoon, asking if I was into a last-minute cruise.
“Okay, cool!” I wrote back.
Early Friday morning, we hopped into my Prius and drove south out of Detroit and snow squalls toward sunny New Orleans. Read More
I met Zach this past fall down in Kentucky at The Mountain Workshops, a week-long intensive dive into photojournalism. He was one of our students in the Picture Editing sequence that I’ve been lucky enough to help teach each fall for a large part of this millennium.
Zach made us laugh, worked really hard and helped us — with our other students — pull together a 120-page book of photos and stories in less than a week. But I think I bonded with him during our shady drug deal on the streets of a small Kentucky town.
Launched in 1977, NASA’s Voyager 2 just left the solar system.
Opened in 1883, 150,000 vehicles cross the Brooklyn Bridge every day.
And songs from one of the earlier metal bands, Led Zeppelin, are still being played today.
So why is it that I have to replace my razor blades every dang month after using them, at most, only every couple of days?
It’s a first frost on your windshield kind of fall day. The sun creaks above the horizon and the frozen blades of grass quickly melt onto my shoes. Walking out among the mounds, I step back in time.
I wasn’t allowed to express my opinions.
I’ve photographed some of the best and brightest politicians — Bill Clinton and Al Gore — and some of the least auspicious, like the fun mayor of Concord, New Hampshire, who moonlighted as my Social Work professor, while I was working on my Master’s degree.
When I photographed politicians and political campaigns in the past, I had to be objective and not let my own personal preferences sway my journalistic integrity. Spending so much time traipsing around the Granite State during The New Hampshire Primaries, I did indeed form opinions about the candidates I covered. But I had to keep those opinions to myself.