Saturday, April 17, 2010

Holyoke Panorama Photos: Mt Tom and The Dam

This afternoon as I was crossing the river I happened to notice just how interesting the scene was with the clouds. I pass this scene daily and have been looking for an excuse to make a panorama of it for some time now. I have also been waiting for the trees to grown some green on them. Today was the first day I have been out there to capture the scene. I will be doing so again, on a mid-summers eve.


2 toned

5 Toned


Holyoke Sun: Front page photos

The front page of The Sun has a few photographs from the surfing photos that we captured a few weeks back. Holyoke: Surfing in Holyoke a growing trend, has the full photo collection and write up of the afternoon. You can pick up The Sun in various locations in Holyoke, or you can get a PDF version by clicking here...

Friday, April 16, 2010

Body found: The remains of…

The remains of a scarecrow were found this afternoon while out   making some photographs for an up coming exhibition. Saturated



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This lone goose sat peacefully on the edge of what looks like a small pier while enjoying the sunset.


Former sight of Parsons Paper.


Featured Photographs: New friend of Holyoke in Photos

I mentioned over the weekend meeting a photographer while out shooting. Bob Gordon, an amateur photographer from the Valley was shooting one of the crumbling mills when we happened to run into each other. Both Bob and I have known each other via Crush, Holyoke’s social network for some time now. We talked and discusses photography, Holyoke, and a few other personal interests. I recalled a few photographs of Bob’s as we were talking. One of the subjects we discussed was his interest with abandoned buildings. Bob is primarily concerned with and interested in post-industrialist America and the abandoned buildings that have been left throughout the cities of the country.

One of the most interesting things we discussed was the de-construction of the state hospitals throughout Massachusetts. Most residents of Western Ma are familiar with the Northampton State Hospital, and the new condo development that occupies the property. Bob described how he had visited this former property in combination with the now 12 other defunct state hospitals. He has a passion for exploring the once occupied places that now seem doomed by the ghosts of memories and the decay of unkempt property.

After talking with Bob for a bit and meeting one of his friends who stopped down to see where he was shooting, we parted ways with the intentions of speaking again. After a few email exchanges and a very eager to share photographer, I am going to post a few of his photographs. Aside from Tim Lastowski, co-owner of my studio, Bob is the first person I am featuring here on Holyoke in Photos.

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Most of the photographs displayed here are from Parsons Paper. Just a mere 3 days before Parsons burned down, in a sad blaze that took an historic paper mill from Holyoke, Bob and a group of people ventured around the inside of the mill. One of the most chilling photographs he made, can be seen here. It was as if a premonition presented it self in front of his lens. Subsequently, Bob made this quasi-iconic photograph that looms as an eerie reminder of the sad fate of the cities largest paper company. 100_6369 (2)

It is a very simple composition. A hard wood floor that has seen decades of use, a fire extinguisher, and the abandoned background of the mill. The natural light provides the perfect key lighting to fill the composition and light the subject matter. What is even more iconic of this photograph is the steep history Holyoke has with fire and arson. Which coincidentally, Parsons was a victim of.

The next photograph that I enjoy viewing, the clock that has stopped time.

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A simple still life. Time has stopped in an omniscient reminder that Parsons is a part of Holyoke’s rich history. The hands of time are frozen in a metaphorical sense and photographic sense. Sitting close to a window, this clock becomes the subject. A portrait of a clock that once sat in an office, perhaps the work floor. This clock provided the time to the employees day in and day out. Eyes viewed this clock time and time again in anticipation of a number of events. The beginning of a shift, the end of a shift, the start of a weekend, the end of career in paper production, or the ever lasting minute that Parsons was no longer open as a functioning mill. This simple still life is an image of Holyoke that I feel speaks volumes about the history in which we have heard of and learned of over the decades.

As you can see, Bob put a lot of energy into his images. I am very grateful to Bob for having taken the time to send these over to me. We have varied styles in terms of photography, composition, and why we make photographs. We both wont disagree though, we are drawn to make photographs to share with people. Bob’s main focus, like I said is abandoned buildings, in contrast to my work as a portrait photographer who has a style for producing fine arts images. We both share a passion for exploring areas and making images of what we find. I hope that you have enjoyed seeing his photographs, as it is a pleasure to feature his images here. 

Thank you Bob, for sharing your photographs.

Friday, April 9, 2010

Valley Paper Company and more…

It was late. It was frigid. It was Friday night and I was on my way into the studio to do some work when I decided to make a quick photo of the former Valley Paper Co

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I hopped back in the car and made my way around back to scrounge around. I ended up meeting another photographer who was also shooting the former paper producer. Both of us knew the other one, just had not yet physically met until today. His focus is on post industrialism and abandonment. Not my focus at all, nor do I try and convey that in my images. However, he does a great job of doing that in his photographs. Hopefully I will be able to secure a few images to share. In the mean time, here he can be seen making a photograph. (He wanted a portrait of him shooting, while I wanted a portrait of him since this was a rare occasion)


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The sun had managed to come out for a bit. Even though it was raining partially where we had been standing. Off in the distance the sun was setting behind MT. Tom


Thursday, April 8, 2010

Portraits: Shooting film in a familiar place

Digital photography is fast, easy, and more affordable. Yet as a studio we still enjoy shooting and working with film. I have two exhibitions lined up, 1 in September 2010 and then in January 2011, in which I am using film. Here are some portraits we did a while back. The film was just processed and scanned today.


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Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Friday and Saturday: Fun and portraits

Friday night was such a great night to be out shooting. We had to make a mad dash from Northampton to Holyoke in time to get for a shoot. We were at a bit of a time crunch and its safe to say I would have preferred to have been back about half an hour before we really were. We overspent our time in Noho because of how great the shooting conditions were. (will provide a few images, even though they are non-Holyoke based) Either way, we still had a great shoot.

Location shoot

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Northampton Images

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I chose to include these images within this article even though they arent of Holyoke. It was because were shooting in Northampton that we were a little late getting back to Holyoke. Essentially they fit into the article in terms of what I had done this weekend.


This portrait was made during a very in depth conversation that consumed a few hours of our time at Pizza D’Action on Lyman st. Great food with an even greater topic for discussion. Justin, CSC_0413pictured here, is also a photographer. He shoots at a different level than myself, with a different subject matter in mind. Though we have differences in subject matter, he is still a very intellectual photographer and we share opinions and views on the contemporary issues surrounding photography.




After getting back from Chesterfield, I was passing through Holyoke on my way up to South Hadley. I stopped and made a few images of the location I was at the evening before.

 Pano of street and lot final

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As you can see, I had a some what busy Friday and Saturday in Holyoke. For me, they were just two average days shooting and spending a few minutes in the city.