I’ve had this idea in my sketchbook for quite some time now. It just took awhile to find the perfect person and the perfect place to tell the story. There’s something fascinating about the dying breed of shabby motels. The decor, the odor, the polyester sheets, the transient guests, the odd management, the broken signs, the filled-in swimming pools and perhaps most evident…the peculiar vibe that attaches itself to these places and just won’t let go.
LIke many, I am inspired by David Lynch and his ability to evoke a deep, uneasy feeling, way beyond what you are seeing in the scene. I think a good photograph makes you ask more questions. Sometimes its not about what it shows, but what it doesn’t. So this was a personal project to push those boundaries and leave a few blanks to be filled in.
“….as if something is about to happen.” I have that written on my Note board. I think those are words to live by when making images.
A big thanks to my main man, Ian Reid (first assistant) for all the help on this one. And, of course, thank you Veronika. You brought the whole idea to life.
The Slumberland Motel
Trevor Graves is a legendary snowboard photographer that captured a good chunk of the sport’s history and help pave the way for other action sport photographers to carry on that tradition. He has always been a inspiration to me, long before i knew him. I’m proud to say that he’s a good friend of mine now. Most of his time now is spent managing Nemo, an agency based out in Portland that I’ve had the privilege to work with quite a bit for all of the NIke 6.0 shoots.
Trevor and his crew have also managed to find time to organize a photo camp that runs parallel with the HIgh Cascade Snowboard Camp up in Mt. Hood every summer. Its been running strong for quite some time now and this year I was honored to have been invited to come out as an instructor, share my experiences with the students and learn a whole lot for myself. It was an amazing few days up there. There was an all-star cast of photographers on hand to teach as well. Tim Zimmerman, Andy Wright, Christie Chaloux, Kari Rowe and even a special appearance from Mr. Trevor Graves himself. It was an honor to be among that crew and pretty much geek out on photography for a week.
Incredible things happen when creative, open minds get together and break down the walls of competition and secrets. THere’s power in sharing. Everyone walks away a little something that can go a long way. I know that I learned so much about myself as shooter, came home refreshed and even have a whole new bag of tricks to apply to my workflow. (The Lightroom immersion from Tim was intense and insightful for sure. )
I set my own intention to start sharing more of my own “process”….to be more transparent with my workflow and humble in regards to the workflow of others. My experience at the Photo Camp was just that. My topic of discussion for teaching was “Transitioning from Action to Lifestyle” and how I made my way through the ranks. I was amazed at how good it felt to tell my story, relive it and then watch it inspire others. Thats the full circle….
So, thanks to all the campers, instructors, counselors, riders and everyone else that somehow made our time up in Mt. Hood a great experience. I”ll be back for sure.
Here’s some images from the weekend. Just a few fun ones of the campers and instructors up on the mountain. Enjoy. Get out there and shoot….and share.
You can write it down, plan it out, talk about it in focus groups, edit it, rehash it, set a date….
But in the end…you just gotta DO THE WORK.
Here’s a few shots from around these parts recently. Evidence of all the above.
I’ve been reading this REWORK book lately and discussing it with some great friends. its says that we should be more like Chefs. Share our recipes. There are no secrets that someone is going to take from you, open a shop and put you out of business. There’s still that magic ingredient that only you possess.
I’m gonna start sharing more. Be transparent, be vulnerable, unveil the process. Its ultimately up to each one of us to DO THE WORK.