When I photographed the Tanner family last Sunday, the parents and two kids had just returned from a Hawaiian vacation. I have known Nicole since we both attended UC Santa Barbara (more than) a few years ago. Now we both live about three miles from each other in the Bay Area. While I was taking pictures, I kept thinking about the different definitions of the Hawaiian word “aloha.” It means hello and good-bye and something in between. I think that also describes my relationship with Nicole and her family. We keep showing up for each other. I expect that it will always be that way… some cosmic Aloha.
Here is the slideshow again from the December 2014 photo visit.
Two years ago, I photographed the Tanners the first time shortly after they moved from the Central Coast. You can find the slideshow in the post.
Sometimes I think I am a good photographer.… Read the rest
Last month I started teaching photography at Pittsburg High School in Pittsburg, California. I love teaching, but I miss being a photographer. Fortunately, I was able to be a photographer last weekend when a friend asked me to photograph her family. We met at Mills College in Oakland, California for a portrait session with her husband and three children.
When Libertad (Libby) Rivera asked me if I were still available to take family portraits, I had just started my new teaching position. At the time, I did not realize that I needed to take pictures more than Libby needed to have her picture taken. I did not need the money. I needed to know that I could still take a decent picture.
Sometimes I know if I have taken a good picture before I see it on my monitor. Last Sunday, I did not know if I had any good pictures, but as soon as I saw the first photograph uploaded to my screen I felt alright.… Read the rest
Each year when I review my pictures, I am surprised by how many images I have taken. This year I knew there were fewer photographs, because I was injured in an April car accident. I planned to separate the pictures into a Best of Part 1 and a Best of Part 2. Then I saw the March 11, 2012 gallery with Richard Leon’s family… Every photo was magical.
I purposely did not title this post, “My best photo gallery,” because I did not do much. I showed up. The family welcomed me when I showed up. The family revealed their love for each other. Richard and Alice clearly loved each other and their children and grandchildren. For thirty years, they had loved each other. They worked together, probably because they wanted to work together and because they were lucky to be together.
The family knew that there time was limited by Richard’s cancer diagnosis, but the family still seemed to understand that they were lucky.… Read the rest
The last week, I have reconnected to my UC Santa Barbara past. In addition to visiting with a few former University of California Santa Barbara Gauchos, I attended the Cal-UCSB basketball game on the Berkeley campus. Before the game, the UCSB Alumni Association sponsored a Pre-Game reception. On Saturday, I also photographed the Tanner family. The adults graduated from UCSB and recently moved to Alameda with their two daughters.
Nicole is a managing partner of Viva Strategy, a communications consulting firm for non-profits and philanthropic organizations. I have always appreciated Nicole. She is smart, kind and considerate. In the past, I would have spent more time talking to her…
but now she has two wonderful kids.
I brought my camera and my two kids. Everyone played.
Nicole also has a husband who bakes bread and watches football. After my wife arrived, everyone had something to do. My wife talked to Richard about baking.… Read the rest