Blogs, Bullshit, and being a Working Artist

I've "run a blog" off and on, mostly off on my website since I created this online space back in college. I have a lot of feelings- like that girl in Mean Girls and I have a lot of feelings and questions- in particularly about "art." I like the appealing idea of having a space to express my self outside of my photographs and to explore / discuss the complexities of this amazing medium with words that people can read and hopefully respond to. I'm going to start my blog up again, for a limited run (get your tickets, mark your fucking calendars) and see if I can commit myself to a select amount of "articles" and see what happens.

Things I want to discuss: retouching, process, the struggle between art & commerce, inspiration, talent, hard work, and some human interest interests, including- but not limited to : beauty ideals, gender, sexuality, adulthood, etc.

SO if you are interested in this- follow along, share, and interact with what I hope will be a conversational adventure into my thoughts about my work and the work of being an artist and a person. 

photo by  Corban Harper


“I never go outside unless I look like Joan Crawford the movie star. If you want to see the girl next door, go next door.”

-Joan Crawford

A true movie star- Joan Crawford lived a life of drama on and off screen. The strongest of cocktails- she’s sweet and bitter, going down easy, but with a burn. Joan’s on screen presence is startling, her commitment to the drama of being an actress is unrelenting. Her features are large and exaggerated and later in life would become somewhat garish. In 1952’s Sudden Fear, there is a scene in which Joan listens to an incriminating message in silence. Here eyes widen, well up and tears fall. She paces about the room in fear, sadness, and disbelief- it is mesmerizing to watch. You feel that just under the surface there is a true madness in Joan- a raw energy that is threatening to explode. Researching the photographer George Hurrell for this project, I came to find that Joan was something of a muse to him. She and Hurrell had 33 sessions together over 16 years- mostly for specific films, but many of them were for the fun of it. Joan would stroll over to the MGM gallery where Hurrell photographed all the MGM stars and say  “don’t you like this dress?” and he would shoot with her because she enjoyed being the production. Joan also had a sense that the images would be beneficial to her career and today, Hurrell’s images of Joan in the 30s are some of the most iconic portraits of the actress. The woman in the photo is Melody Madarasz. 


“Fasten your seatbelts, its going to be a bumpy night!”  

-Bette Davis as Margo Channing in All About Eve, 1950

Bette Davis is simply one of the greatest actresses of all time. Her style, voice, and energy are unmistakeable. In All About Eve, Bette Davis is transcendent. The film itself is incredibly modern and deals with everything from the ruthlessness of the entertainment industry to the complexities of close friendships and romantic relationships. Bette carries the film effortlessly, completely embodying the aging actress Margot Channing. Margot befriends  a seemingly harmless fan turned overly eager wannabe actress and the drama there ensues. The film holds up, largely because of Bette’s performance. It’s dramatic, but believable- totally engrossing, and ultimately relatable. You get the sense that Bette herself is somewhere muddled up in Margot and that gives the performance an added layer of excitement. Pulling no doubt from her own experiences with the film industry, her age, the expectations for her as a woman, friend, mother. etc.- Bette is explosive. She is one of the greats- something that never was before and will never be again. The woman in the photo is my friend and big eyed beauty Maddy Grabyel. 


Why yes- that is hair on my upper lip. It's been about 2 weeks of mo grow and I'm into it. I'm even more into the whole bit about raising awareness for men's mental health ( and really mental health in general ) so if your into that situation ( you should be ) check out this link and learn a lil more about this lil diddy called Movember.