I had a great time shooting with Ryan! It was a good opportunity to talk cameras, recipes, photography, and more. I want to give a special “thank you” to Ryan for participating in this adventure, for allowing himself to be filmed, and for sharing his pictures in the video. Please check out his Instagram account, as his pictures are great!
Let me know in the comments what you think of the video. I appreciate the feedback!
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I recently stumbled upon an abandoned RV dealership in North Salt Lake, Utah. It’s been vandalized. Broken glass and graffiti abound. Nature is doing its thing, too. It’s significantly dilapidated.
Hugh’s R.V. apparently hasn’t been closed for very long, I believe less than two years, but the building looks like it has been abandoned for a decade or more. One of the reviews I found for this place stated that it looked dilapidated—this was when it was still open!—so it was already in a state of disrepair prior to abandonment, and that partially explains why it looks so bad now. Perhaps more than anything, people have just trashed it since it closed.
I captured Hugh’s R.V. with my Fujifilm X100V using my Kodak Portra 400 film simulation recipe. I love how this recipe looks for many things, including structures. Really, it was an easy choice! This particular film simulation recipe could be many people’s “only” recipe. It’s good for such varied situations, and an abandoned building in afternoon light is no exception. This Portra 400 recipe on the X100V is an especially great combination, and a one camera, one lens, one recipe philosophy could be embraced. I appreciate the film-like aesthetic of my Portra 400 settings.
My challenge to you is for one week (or at least one day if that’s too much) use one camera with one lens and one film simulation recipe. If you don’t have an X100V, that’s no problem, just use what you do have. I think the restriction will empower your creativity. Limitations improve art. If you accept this challenge, let me know in the comments which camera, lens and recipe you plan to use, and also report how it goes. I look forward to your feedback!
I created a new video entitled Abandoned, which features my black-and-white photographs of abandoned places that I’ve captured over the last five years. I used to do a lot of “urban exploration” type photography, but I don’t venture into that genre much anymore. I do think that it’s important to document these forgotten and neglected structures, as they’ll crumble away someday, either by man or nature, and the opportunities to record them are fleeting. The photographs also serve as commentary to how society deals with what’s unwanted and unneeded. The decay speaks of our values, and how we handle change.
The main purpose of this video, however, is not the photographs, but the music. I have a six-year-old son, Joshua, who loves music. You can tell that he feels it deeply, like he connects with it at soul-level. He’s learning piano, and it’s impressive the songs that he makes up. He’s not a child prodigy or anything like that, but he’s much more musical than my other kids. He is music smart, and we’re trying to foster that.
My kids like to make songs on an app where you mix samples. It’s kind of like being a DJ. It’s called “live loops” and you can select different sounds and beats, and record it as you go. There’s a lot that can be manipulated and customized. My kids record all sorts of different songs. Last week Joshua came to me and excitedly said, “Daddy, listen to this song I made!” He played it, and I was impressed. It sounded like an actual song! It was pretty well done.
Being a proud father, I wanted to share his creation with everyone, so I made a video. I hope that you enjoy the photographs, but I hope you especially enjoy the music that my six-year-old son mixed. I think that the music and pictures compliment each other, and together they tell a story. I hope that we’ll have many more opportunities to collaborate. I can say for certain that Joshua loves music, and he has many more creations stirring in his heart and mind right now.