manipulation of the organic

in the last two days, 3 different people have said something to the tune of "you been slackin on that blog" or "whens the new photo blog comin up?"  i think this is kind of funny, because it hasnt even been a month since the last post.  usually i do one a month - not cause im any sort of regimented but because a months worth of photos sitting on my desktop starts to look pretty daunting, so thats when i start editing.  the flow doesnt ever stop, and "keeping up" with all these files i create and am obligated to manage/store/display sometimes feels like a job.  i think its at that moment, when i feel like im just doing some kind of personal duty, that i realize how natural it is to be committed to something you are passionate about.  its something you dont think twice about - it could be skateboarding, music, keeping the house clean, protesting, whatever...  im just happy to have something [a few things, actually - each of them "blessings" i count daily] that i dont have to think twice about.  too much thinking can get us into trouble, can slow our movement.  and the point of passions is to push us, not tie us down.  i always thought kids were onto something, with their irresponsible, reckless, carefree lust for life.  throughout the unstoppable, cruel process of aging, its been of utmost importance for me to find ways to continue embracing that attitude, that take on existence - the pure pursuit of our joys.  once we lose sight of that i think we are done for.  photography has been one great vehicle for that cause, an ally in the battle against time, my favorite coworker.

gather your tools

 good guys dont wear white

since jonah moved out, no one sits on my bed anymore.  kipp dickles, reporting live...

grant hs, fox lake, il

let the hunt begin

preferred parking

john long middle school, grafton, wi.

menomonee falls, wi

cops get preferential treatment at the oil change place.  they had 3 dudes working on this car and i had to wait longer than usual.  not that im in a hurry when i get my oil changed, but waiting for cops...  not that rad
showtime on bay 2

some scruffy guy draws himself in unconventional light.  kudos on the hair.

one day my radiator started dripping.  it took me a few days to figure out what that sound was.  i rigged up this little contraption to catch the water while my landlord took his time responding to my calls.  the idea behind the tube was to silence the drip noise so i could sleep and not go crazy.  

but its february, who am i kidding?  im going crazy anyways.  sure, a frozen pizza and six episodes of its always sunny - perfect way to spend an afternoon.  or a morning.  or the middle of the night.

got a new bed though.  been sleeping on that old twin since middle school.  jesus.  no wonder my back is sore after 20 minutes of standing.  pizza crumbs on the new sheets.  classy.

one day the madness drove me to ride my bike downtown and walk around with a camera.  i just wanted to get out of the house.  fuuuuuckin winter.

an agreeable composition

keihl, fritz run

mouse master, dave kiehl

ah geez, there was a blizzard

i get the urge to go outside during sketchy weather.  i think its the desire to actually experience something real and wild and huge.  so i went.

you should know that i dont put vignettes onto photos.  its just what happens when youve got a uv filter over the lens.  thats a problem of a full frame sensor.  thats also the problem with always misplacing lenscaps - you rely on the uv filter too much.  anyways, white balancing the middle of a nighttime blizzard was pretty tricky but this is what i got...

 of course, the hill seemed like the best place to go.  a block away, and vast.  the openness of the area caused incredibly irregular drifting patterns - some places the snow was over two feet deep and some there was no snow at all - bare grass and blacktop.  i felt like i was on another planet.  the wind and snow was so abrasive i had to walk with my head bent over, only looking up when the wind would settle for brief moments.

blizzard grotto

went for a swing

you can see the light of the tower back there

did one with the flash on the 35

mitch was on it the next morning

the alley was a frozen sea of white waves and trash

a few gems washed up.  just kidding, i threw that one away.  the rear wheels had completely disintegrated in our basement.  serious funk down there, eating through urethane.

hey man, have you seen my car?

sometimes you park in the perfect spot.  shooting photos from the car, from where you first see them...  nothing wrong with that at all.  the light was nice on kings feet.

up the street from kings feet, this 13 caught my backwards eye.  this came after a two hour photo mission of the top secret variety.  top secret because thats just how i have to operate now.  no more sharing the big ideas until theyre finished.  had to learn that the hard way.

a trip to cream city 

another trip to cream city

been eyeballin this monster for a few years and had to take care of business [see im learning from my mistakes].  i stood there for about a minute making the best exposure and when i walked back to my car i noticed a couple suited men come out and watch me, then look up sort of dumbfounded at the wall, then back at me, then all around, trying to figure out what the fuck i was doing.  i laughed so hard.  around the corner i found some bros street-brucing...

are 20 stairs gnarly on a snowboard?  how do you guage the gnar when youre buckled in and going off a ramp and dismounting whenever you feel like it?  i do think its pretty nuts that people are doing this without any way of locking in.  i drove to the top to poach a view from up on the bridge but when i got up there a cop was shutting them down.

had some weird job on super bowl sunday down in illinois.  trying to sell 5x7s at a basketball tournament.  8 hours of sitting and listening to yelling, watching texters.

liked those speakers.  longfellow middle school in wauwatosa.

they have a skate club.  a teacher said "ok boys, get your hats on."  its the trend right now for youngsters to wear their winter hats way back on their heads so they look like weird gangster elves.  i find it to be kind of an eyesore - i think this is why i dont like to watch jordan grace skate.  that fuckin hat...

  "grab a burger, dude."

pretty impressive.  i like sequences.

i like how the cut out snake looks.  i also like the corpo-commentary.

im guessing these girls like lady gaga

robot, also a fan

pius has a pretty cool old gym that they dont use anymore.  old school buildings are usually really slick.  all day i kept imagining building a skatepark in there.

probably spent too much time watching this turtle eat

kid art is so rad

mitch wondered why i was photographing the pot

travis gaastra's sister t-shirt flow.  i acquired this from travis in 1999, and handed it over to dugs in 2011. 

speaking of flow, the drip became a steady trickle and i had to upgrade to the rubbermaid container.  this thing filled up in under 12 hours.  finally a zolper-bot came and handled the situation.  cuttin it a little close.

checked in on kipps old boo-woo friend and got a two-fer

well, cars lookin good

one day after work i got to go to the airport to pick up my girlfriend

super rad

we did a lot of stuff for the five days she was here.  a good portion of that was junk/antique stores

 what a treat

found this for my bro.  a monkey feeding a giraffe.  

racine wi

i dont really care about cars, but there was something i liked about this one.  maybe just a nice blue.

i usually do all this stuff alone, which i like, but second hand stores can be kind of heavy sometimes.  having sarah with changed that.  an entire room full of old kitchen supplies were no match for the joy i was feeling.

still in racine

we drove to illinois.  the place i wanted to stay only did weeklys.  i drove past hotels that would have been fine in search of something better.  what does better even mean?  then i ran a red light and saw two flashes go off.  [just got the ticket in the mail today, the photos of my car are fucking hilarious].  i stewed.  we found a place.  i was lucky to be in such tolerant, understanding, tender company.  lucky indeed...

the next morning we took a train into chicago and went to the cultural center to see this exhibition...


please scope that work [if you cant make it to the exhibit, at least check out that link], its mind blowing, and a great story of discovered treasure.  so good.

they didnt allow any photos in that part of the exhibit.  but i shot some of the louis sullivan display...

reminds me of baus

apparently this is unsanctioned knockoff work, but its still incredible.  i wish these types of trimmings were still standard on buildings.  

sullivan smoked these.  'quality not style' is an interesting slogan.

scott walker, fuck you

an art museum is a good place to annihilate one anothers checklists.  fish in a barrel, i tell you.

an evening in milwaukee bars...  champions for some shuffleboard.  very animated.  cute.  shit talking.  ska?

oh haaaayyyy

keys, dude.  

dude, horsies.


a damn fine trip.  im moving to reno in july.

back to my solitary routine...

exposure test.  i can guess this close before the camera is turned on about 90 percent of the time.  like tuning a guitar by ear.

in film school, there was this one kid who loved to use the word 'juxtaposition' in every other sentence and it drove me nuts.  thats all i could think about whenever i drove past this wall.

i do, however, spill the beans

perfect composition number one

perfect composition number two

experimenting with the agoraphobic frame

pretty sure i had just eaten a cruller

shot from the hip.  super sick.

light, dude

they wouldnt sell me this flag.  arent you a store?  whats the point?


both of these shot in a mint green anscoflex 2 from 1954

milwaukee bike polo did a halftime show at a roller derby.  wish i could have played.  i was relegated to photo duties, which was actually fine because i was sick with one of those delirious chest/head colds. 

the future of bike polo?  as always, you can see the rest right chere

has robot ever had last wraps?  probably...