je me reviens


My stay in Santa Barbara was satisfying in its challenge and refreshing in its remoteness from things daddy-like. Boy, did I need to get away. I missed Viv and Amy and all that, but so acute was my need for a vacation that the thought of coming home early, well, what, are you kidding?

Vacation isn't the right word for what I was doing. It was a week-long series of photography workshops with a daily schedule from 8:30a.m. to 11:30p.m. Breakfasts and lunches were catered in at the school, so we were solidly there until dinner, which was on our own. After dinner it was another lecture or demo or hands-on exercise in-the-field, and then off to our various local accomodations for sleep.

Sleep... in theory anyway. As is my tendency when visiting foreign lands, I like to tune in to the local TV scene, check out the various news broadcasts, and watch the cable channels that I don't get at home. After long days of school it takes a while to wind down. Lest you think I lech, it was the Bravo Channel that had my interest. I finally got to see an episode of Inside The Actors Studio, the interview show I've heard a lot about but never seen. Anthony Hopkins was the guest and he was a delight to listen to and watch. He made me feel little longings for my acting days, which are gone now, thankfully, mostly because my longings were little.

I came away from the week with a headful of information and ideas. Most of the other attendees were photography educators, many of whom teach high school. Along with the stress of dwindling budgets there comes the drain of dealing with high school kids in general. All this has a way of sapping one's will to live, let alone one's passion for photography, and I got to see the workshop light some fires under some of the teachers. And I learned a buncha stuff, 'cause there's a buncha stuff I ain't never learnt.

One of the assignments we had was to do some documentary shooting of the Brooks Institute of Photography's Annual Picnic. We workshop students scattered throughout the event while the faculty and full-time students enjoyed their barbecue, awards, and raffle. After the picnic we turned in our film and overnight some of the AV staff and students produced a slide show with music and titles. It was a blast, they used a lot of my stuff (my first shot opened the show), and it was a nice break from the intense studies.

The week following the workshop was spent decompressing. I reviewed my notes and worksheets on zone system development tests, chromozones for color value reproduction, film speed testing, and metering for twilight architectural shooting, and I'm just thick enough to where it takes about a week for all that to soak in.

I think it might be time for a vacation.


Today's Music:

"Discipline" -- Bobby McFerrin -- MEDICINE MUSIC


Wisdom of the Day:

"Whom are you?" said he, for he had been to night school.

- George Ade