Saturday, May 27, 2017

Am Printing The Dad On White Background Head Shot For "Healing Process"

Here is the second version of the dad on white background head shot. I need to lighten the left side shoulder in the image. I might also try an even more contrasty version of this print in the next versions. This photo was shot on my dad gifted 8x10 Deardorff (Eddie). It was made in my small home studio.

I set up this second studio copying the design-setup I used in Thailand for the sex workers portraits of 2007-09-12. This last portrait session of my father and the negs that resulted made the setting up of this studio (buying flash gear and soft boxes) well worth the extra expense. If I had not made the effort and paid out the doe, I would not now have these important negatives. (Note* part of my original flash gear is still in Thai).

I intend to use this head shot as the introductory image for the exhibition and for my artist talk. It was dads idea to change his hair, point it down, He did that mid session to get a different look, it worked, His collaboration helped the image.

The printing steps are pretty straight forward:
- 220 seconds f 11 with a 240mm in the Durst 8x10 enlarger. Magenta set at 105 on the color Durst head.
- Dodge left face/shoulder, jaw, mouth for 80 seconds (spread) wit large long handle round dodge tool.
- Mask # 1, added burn to the shoulders 90 seconds (also dodge area with hand movement).

2nd attempt at the opening shot of the dad "Healing Process" exhibition print.

My Endless Gabbing Needs To Be Controlled

When it comes to my photography and the adventures of making pictures  I tend to gab on forever in an excited and uncontrolled manner. I did that to a very nice couple yesterday at the Biennial 2017 opening at the AGA. I started on my gab fest when we I promoted my 2 up coming group exhibitions (complete with hand out paper work) and did not stop for over 30 minutes.

Gosh I can get over excited and quite a bore talking about the art, the stories behind the art, and my views on life in general when I get going. I have to learn how to control that better, shut it down sooner. When I have a captive audience I think might be interested I tend to lose control of myself. I need to stop hitting these groups with a constant barrage of Gerry empty headed babble.

I have 2 artist talks happening in the next bit. One for "Healing Process" at the AGSA, and another possible one with the Shutterbugs photo group. I need to be more concise, direct and focused in the way I explain things. I need to control my exuberance and excitement and stay on point. Just because you have people trapped in a room to listen to you does not mean you should be torturing them with every silly thought that enters your silly head!

I always feel so excited when I am in the moment telling those stories, explaining my creative and altruistic passions and hopes but later on (today) I feel that I went overboard and said too much. Later I feel guilty about speaking too long, saying too much and boring folks in general with my creative only semi interesting life experiences. Control Gerry, focus Gerry, simplify and shorten Gerry and most importantly listen to the other persons thoughts and feelings carefully, close your bloody mouth sometime.

Live and learn I guess. 

Friday, May 26, 2017

Fun Times At AGA Biennial 2017 Opening Night

Had a fun FREE for members night at the Art Gallery of Alberta opening night for the Biennial 2017. This is the first of these events that I have attended, and it was a blast. I met all kinds of cool folk, handed out 5 of my exhibition promotion sheets (for "Trumpet and "Healing Process") and had a I generally good time. I was able to visit the galleries again for the 8th time, thou I did not see the Biennial stuff as there was to long a line up to get into the space. I will view it at a later date, not my cup of tea I think. I even met the head boss of bosses of the  AGA gallery  a very friendly person (we talked food). I gave her and invite to the two shows hope she attends one or both shows.

These types are highly recommended!! Will go back again in the future. You should try one if you can.

Note* I ended up talking to and learning some tips from a documentary film maker at the event. He gave me a wonderful recommendation on how to protect my BMPCC's from humility condensation problems in Asia (plastic bags).

"Healing Process:" Artist Talk Confirmed For August 31

The artist talk at the AGSA for "Healling Process" has been confirmed. I will be speaking of my father, our relationship, our collaboration together on "My Fathers Last Days" and telling individual stories about the making of each of the 7 - 20x24 inch photographs in the exhibition.

The talk will be on August 31, 2017 at 6:30 pm at the Art Gallery of St. Albert (AGSA)

Art Gallery of St Albert
19 Perron Street
St Albert, AB T8N 1E5
P: 780-460-4310
F: 780-460-9537
Regular Hours:
Tuesday to Saturday: 10 am – 5 pm
Thursday: 10 am – 8 pm
Admission: Free

Rich Canadians, Too Selfish And Cheap To Help Children Living In Garbage?

Looks like I am only going to get 2 donaters out of 50 or so email attempts. Nor sure why Canadians living a life of luxury and leisure cannot spare $5 or an old hat to help those in need. Why would they not want to help babies, children, old folks who live in garbage? Why wouldn't you want to help improve those lives? Too selfish? Too cheap? Complete indifference? It is beyond me. We each have to live with the choices we make in life. We each need to follow our own hearts or lack of heart.

Nuff said on that ugly thought.

Thanks to the 2 who came forward, and offered to donate some money, you both showed compassion and humanity for those in need.  Thank you, thank you, thank you.

If I am short of the $1000 dollar donation number I set for this trip, I will throw more of my guard salary into the cause. Right now I am at $550-$600 in money (from my artist exhibition and artist talk earnings) along with some donations of hats and toys promised. I also have the 2 who came forward to donate after my email call, not sure how much they will give.

If I have to add another $400 of my own dollars, so be it. Maybe I can sell some of my photo gear on eBay to pay for it. Too bad they do not buy blood in Canada, would do that if I could. There would be something very human and excitingly valuable and  real in giving your own blood to buy food for those in need, to help send children to school. Wish I could do that :). Will have to settle with giving my security guard wages and artist fee dollars, not as personal, but still a an important and proper way to use those funds.

Giving is so beautiful. When you help those in need it is not only beneficial to them, it helps the giver as much, maybe more. In a way I am selfishly giving to them to help myself. Doing this work allows me to become a better version of myself, a more rounded and good human being. I am often a crude/rude/arrogant/self centered bastard. I am selfishly in pursuit of becoming the best person I can be, and the people in the dump are helping me to chase down that goal.

New dump family 2013
Child crying in the garbage with found doll 2013

Thursday, May 25, 2017

Which Head Shot To Use?

I am making 11x14 inch prints to choose the best negative to make up as the lead photo of my father in the coming "Healing Process" show at the AGSA. It will be a head shot on white background but I have six or seven 8x10 negs to choose from, need to pick the one that communicates our message best.

Prints Dropped Off For The "Trumpet" Exhibition

I dropped off my 5 framed photographs and my exhibition magazine along with some cards at Latitude 53 this afternoon. All went well. It is a large gallery space with a kind and friendly staff. My only worry is that I printed too dark for the galleries lighting.

I also dropped off the Blurb exhibition magazine version #1 that I made up.  Hopefully it can be viewed by the gallery visitors during the "Trumpet" exhibitions run. Version #2 is still in production and will be a bit less contrasty with many more photos. especially from the series ?My Fathers Last Days"/

Note* I plan on using these same scanned jpegs for the PowerPoint artist talk presentation I am also working on. I found out today from a friend Joanna, who is an excellent computer design person, that they are more than large enough jpeg files to project.

Note** I offered to "fill spaces" at the gallery with extra 16x20 "Families of the Dump" black framed pictures. Doubt that offer will be accepted thou, it does not hurt to try. :)

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Will Do A Talk To A Photography Group

I got offered the opportunity to give a presentation a artist talk a local photo group in my city called photobugs. The group is made up of amateur photobugs who love photography and making pictures together as a group. In past years I have invited their membership to several of my photography exhibits. I did that again recently when I invited them to "Trumpet" and "Healing Process". Tonight I was asked by one of the heads of the group to do a talk this winter at a boardroom somewhere for the group.

This is a non paying gig (shutterbug is non profit) so I would not be able to earn donation and or film money but I think it would serve 3 important functions. One it would allow me to tell the stories of the people in my photographs, that is one of my main motivations as a social documentary photographer. Two it would allow me to continue to grow as a artist and creative person. Talks like this will help me become better at what I do. Just like writing this blog does, jumping into the world of art speeches, talks, exhibitions allows for the artist to grow. Three it might inspire people in the photobug community, inspire them to make more photos, or inspire them help those in need (like in the Mae Sot dump),

I will have to make up a quality PowerPoint presentation which I still do not have. Larry and his wife Joanna I hope can help me a bit with that. I can also learn from people at work and online. I think it is about time I did up a high end PowerPoint "The Photographs of Gerry Yaum" presentation. In the future if I do talks for NAIT (as my friend Larry does) or for other photo groups or even at galleries like AGA, I will need a top end PowerPoint presentation to show the work. You can not hand out prints to a room of 50 or 100 people. I also need to get more experience at speaking in front of large groups of folks. This talk will be part of that learning curve, it should be a very positive step forward.

Plus it will be fun : )!!

Will Get The $100 Exhibition Shipping Fee!!, Donation Totals Growing

Found out today I will get the $100 shipping fee for taking my prints to Latitude 53 gallery and for picking them up later. You got to love that, $100 for driving my car about and dropping off some exhibition prints.

I now will earn $500 in donation money from this "Trumpet" exhibition. $400 for the artist fee and $100 for the shipping fee. With the artist talk dad gift fee for "Healing Process" ($50? $100?) I am over the $500 barrier for my "Families of the Dump" donation. I am also going to receive monetary donations from 2 of the people I emailed recently begging for help (2 from maybe 50 emails, not great but still better than nothing). These added donations from good kind people will pull the money numbers still higher. I was hoping to have $1000 before I left Canada, maybe I can reach that goal. I might have to throw in my second artist fee (from Healing Process) or some of my security guard salary to reach it. I was hoping to put the second artist fee towards my photo paper payments, I paid roughly $1300-1500 CAD in photo paper costs to B&H for the 2 shows. I will have some paper left over (30-40 20x24 sheets) but that still lots of money on paper.

I will also receive hats, and toys from people I work with. The company and people I work with at as a security guard have been VERY generous in the past so maybe some dollars will come from there again, hope so. If not the second hand hats and toys are greatly appreciated and more than enough.

My air ticket is bought (not paid for but bought!). The money, and donated goods are coming together. Things are rounding out nicely. I can return to the dump to photograph, film and help the people again soon. I am quite eager to see everyone. How have things change? It will be about 1 year 5 months since my last visit, many things no doubt will be different. Hope everyone is still alive and in reasonably good shape. Life in the dump can be extremely brutal, things can go bad quickly.

World Sleeping Record?

Set a land, air and sea sleep record today. Today I had perfect sleeping condition, drizzling rain, coolish temps (hiding under my quilt) and a warm purring cat on my arm. I went to bed around 10 pm last night, and finally woke up, just now, at 1:38 pm this afternoon. Whats that? 15 hours 38 minutes? Slept all that time with only a few bathroom breaks, FEEL GREAT!! Every now and again I tend to do one of these sleeping binges but those usually run around 12 hours, 15+ is rather remarkable.

Hmm wonder if I should take a nap now? Writing this blog got me sleepy! :)