Thursday, November 26, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving

I remember every Thanksgiving spending it at my grandma’s house. These are some of my fondest memories. My grandma was one of the most influential persons in my life. As I got older she became more of a friend than a parent. We would sit around and talk for hours. There was nothing that I couldn’t talk to here about. She always had the right answers she was the smartest person I have ever known. Out of know nowhere I got a call and found out that she had bone cancer. They said she only had 6 months to live. I was devastated. Her spirit was so great she live 10 years past that date. In that time I witnessed strength beyond measure. She never complained or gave up on life. To be able to witness that first hand changed my life forever. She was the most amazing human if my life could be a fraction of what her was I would have no complaints when it was over. Some one could right a book about her life and it would be a best seller. I love the photo because it symbolizes so much to me. I took this when she was very sick but she would still cook for all of us. The negative from this shoot tore when I developed it. This symbolized how I felt torn by the thought of her being so sick but also feeling so proud. I am so thankful for having here in my life!

Happy thanksgiving,


Monday, November 23, 2009

Enabled Project Invitation

This video was shot over 3 years ago when I started the Enabled Project. It is crazy to look back and see how far it has come. This is a message of hope that encourages you to never give up and to always follow your dreams. Even if you can't make it to the art exhibit, I hope this project will still inspire you! Go to: to get inspired!

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Enabled Project

I’m speechless! My friend Kandee Johnson asked to do a video about the Enabled Project. The response has been unreal. She is a guiding light that shines thought the darkness.

Thank you,


Tuesday, November 10, 2009

This is one of my all time favorite photos

This is one of my all time favorite photos, it was two years in the making. The year before, I tried to shoot something similar with John Jackson, but it didn’t work out. After that attempt, I was so upset. There’s only been a few times that I haven’t been able to pull off a conceptual photo. Not to mention, that I planned it out a year before I shot it. Let’s just say I was heartbroken.

I was going to try it again for this project, and I was very nervous going in to this shoot. The day we rolled up to shoot, there was freezing rain coming down. It was probably the worst conditions you could imagine for a shoot. I was sitting in my truck, with my friend Nathan Yant, trying to decide if we should go up and shoot or not. He said , “this is what we do, we shoot snowboarding, we work in conditions like this, so quit trippin’ and let’s just go out there and see if the weather gets better.” I agreed, so we gathered our 20 person crew, and headed up the mountain in the freezing rain, as the sun was setting. When we got up there, we entered into a crazy blizzard! All the photo equipment was covered in 10 inches of snow, and it was dark now. It took us 2 hours to find all the equipment and unbury it, then we spent another 4 hrs setting up in a blizzard!

We wanted to get a test shot before we lit the trees on fire, but no one wanted to hit a jump in a blizzard, in the middle of the night. I agreed. The storm started to let up, but now every one was wet and freezing cold. Cameron Pierce and Daniel Eek said, “we will do some speed checks and see if we warm up.” They sad they’d give it a try. Now it was going to happen. My stomach was in knots, but I couldn’t let anyone know this, because if I show doubt, my crew would start doubting it too. My experience with these types of situations is, every one needs to say positive. Everyone was looking at me, and I just kept telling them, it was going to work out and be an amazing shoot, but I had no idea if it was going to work. Daniel and Cameron, started hitting it. After a few hits, Daniel was over it, it was too dangerous for him, he couldn’t even see while he was riding into the jump. Cameron wasn’t stoked about the conditions, but we wanted to do it. Cameron had just come in to town that day, to replace Peter Line, who broke his back working on this project. Cameron is an armature for Forum, and this was one of his first big shoots. Talk about stepping up, and he did!

Now it was time for us to light the trees on fire. We only have one or two chances to get this. I put, a local Tahoe kid, Kyle McCoy, who worked for the forest service
(with fire) , in charge of lighting the trees on fire. It was hard to get the trees to light because they were covered with frozen rain. Kyle made some crazy concoction he learned from working with the forest service. He started dowsing the trees along with five other local Tahoe kids. Nathan and I were thinking this does not look good. We radioed to Cameron, he was ready. We called “action!”, he dropped in and started riding down the dark mountion at full speed. We motioned to light the trees and there was an explosion of orange light. Kyle was on the peak of the jump with this flammable concoction in his hand. We noticed his half of his body was on fire! It looked like a scene out of a Die Hard movie! He knew Cameron was already riding into the jump, so he didn’t even try to put the fire out! He just ran and jumped off the side of the jump while on fire, not knowing what was on the other side! Next thing you know Cameron comes flying off the jump and bam I shoot this photo. I looked at the image instantly and knew I had the shot.

Now it was time to see if every one was ok. We ran up to
Kyle and he was laughing. I asked, “Are you ok?”, he said, “This is nothing! I work for the Forest Service, imagine being in a real forest fire!” At the end of the day, it all worked out. I was stoked. I grew up in South Lake Tahoe, and let’s just say , “we are a rare breed”. My crew was mostly made up of these people. It would not have been possible to do this without them.

Most people would say we’re crazy… I say, these are my friends!

Side note: If any one was wondering about the trees, I had my friend Tarren and Kyle Norman, gather Christmas trees that people had thrown out with the trash after Christmas. They stored them for us until this shoot. The trash left over after Christmas, is so bad for our environment. That is what this photo symbolizes to me.

This ice wall took 2 days to build, it got finished at 4:30 am. We could only shoot on the ice for an hour before the sun came up. We felt like we were dreaming because we were so tired. (Action by Pat Mo0re)

Action & Portrait photo:Daniel Eek

The pond photo was super fun to shoot, nothing crazy happened. So my boss (Bryan Knox)had to “live up to the craziness”, I told him that every time I shoot, something crazy happens. He told me he was going to jump the pond on my snowmobile. In my head I was like “yeah right”, and said sure. He road it through it a few times, and decided he said I going to do it. I couldn’t say no because I already said he could. I hear my snowmobile just coming out of the darkness at full throttle toward it. Then you see him flying over the pond. He made it!
We started screaming in excitement, he brought the snowmobile around to me…we noticed the whole rear end was bent and all the shocks were blown out!
There was a take off, but just a flat landing. I just started laughing and said I was stoke he did that.

Monday, November 9, 2009

My greatest contribution to snowboarding

These photos are my greatest contribution to snowboarding. I’m very proud of them out of all the submission to snowboard magazines this one is my favorite. One of the reasons I am so fond of then is because thet have a message in them. It is very subtle but that’s the way I like things. They represent what we are doing to the environment. This is one of the most important issues of our times. We are slowly destroying the earth the thing that keeps us alive. That is just a crazy thought to me. How is it possible that we consume so much stuff? The leaders of our planet encourage consumption. Or society is based around this concept. Why do the products we by only last for six mounts? My thoughts are that recycling is important but it is miss leading. Now I’m suppose to feel ok with thronging thousands of plastic bottles away? The fact is we have to stop consuming as a planet. I feel like the earth is a living organism and we are a cancer killing it.

There is a 5 minuet video that goes with this project it tell the story a little bit better .You can get it from I Tunes for $5. Any time I can contribute some good to this word I take advantage of it.

This is not your typical environmental project it is not come guys eating granola trying to save the earth that is not my style. I want to paint a very graphic picture of what we are doing. At the sane time I wanted it to apply to a young audience who are snowboarders. The youth is the future and I feel like if I can plant a seed now maybe it can grow in time. These kids will be running things in time. We all know the people doing it now are not doing that good of a job.

This project was made possible by Forum ,Transworld snowboarding mag and the efforts of so so many people thank you for being a part of this.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Polaroid image transfers / Eddie Wall

The Digital revolution came upon us so fast with in a few years it change the way we saw the world. There will be a time when film and photography will come back. The problem is in the process of this revolution we lost most of the film that had helped create these one of a kind pieces of art

These photos are Polaroid image transfers this process I learn from taking a day class some years ago. The images you see here are from an Eddie Wall interview that was published in snowboarder magazine in 2004. Before I worked on these I researched some other people who had done these image transfers and I wanted to do something that I had never seen before. I wanted to lay images over each other like you would in Photoshop. I did not even know if this was possible. I use the little money I had at the time and bought just enough Polaroid film to complete this project. This meant that I could not mess up!

Each one these multiple image transfers took me 8hrs to complete. I work on then like a mad scientist. The thing that impressed me the most I was abele to do each one with out messing up. Each of these is a one off pieces. One mistake would have meant it was the end of this project.

I had been talking to snowboarder mag about doing an Eddie Wall interview I let them know I had something to show them. I set up a meeting and drove from Lake Tahoe to Orange County witch is an 8 hr drive so I could show then in person. I had some time to think on my drive and I started doubting my self.No one had ever done ant thing like this. When I walked in the office and opened this portfolio book with the transfers in it I had no idea of what they were going to say? The photo editor loved them they agreed to run the pieces in the mag. After it came out people had no Idea of what this was they assumed it was done in Photoshop. That kind of bummed me out but looking back on it I see the importance of this piece. This is proof that Photoshop is not the only way. Weather or not the majority of people gets it that is not important. I was inspired my some one to do this and I hope I inspire people to push them self to be individuals not clones. Even if it is just one person. That is what is important to me

The method


Expose the Polaroid film
Use the Vivitar/Daylab instant slide printer to make the exposure. Set the cropping and filtration. Transfers should be somewhat overexposed. Also, a small amount of warming filter can improve the image since the red dyes tend to get lost in the transfer process.


Prepare the surface
For the wet-transfer method, (far easier than the dry) soak paper such as Arches hot-press 140-pound watercolor paper in warm (80-100 degree) water briefly until it is soft (less than a minute). Remove from water and let it drain. Place on a flat surface and squeezee lightly.


Start the Polaroid development process
Pull the film through the processing rollers. Use a straight, smooth motion and don't stop halfway! This will distribute the developer evenly. After about 12-15 seconds, pull the two sides of the Polaroid sandwich apart quickly. Set the faint sepia "positive" receiver aside.


Make the transfer
Place the "negative" Polaroid sheet face down on the prepared damp paper. Roll with the brayer, being careful not to let the negative move in relation to the paper. Use a gentle technique; too much pressure with the roller can distort the image. Let the negative stay in contact with the paper for about two minutes. It is helpful to keep the negative warm during this time - you can float the paper in a tray of warm water. If you have a warming tray, set the water bath on it and turn the temperature to about 100 degrees.


Separate the negative
After about 2 minutes, (you will need to experiment to see exactly how long it depends somewhat on the room temperature) you are ready to pull the negative from the paper. Remove it from the water and slowly begin to peel back the negative. A very slow pull is the safest technique. If the image starts to lift excessively, try starting from another corner.


Post processing
Polaroid chemistry is very basic, and it is advisable to neutralize this. A post-processing soak in a weak acid, such as vinegar, is recommended. This also tends to strengthen the colors somewhat. Use a solution of 1 part vinegar to 4 parts water. Soak for no more than 60 seconds with agitation. Then wash in running water for 4 minutes and air-dry.

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Polaroid Type 55 The lost art

The start of the digital revolution was the end of to most fine art films. This is a tragedy and a major loss to photography. Digital photography equals laziness so many times I find my self saying I will just fix it in Photoshop. From exposures to composition. There was honesty that film had people just assumed it was real. Digital is the complete opposite. You assume it’s fake or has been altered.

When I shot this photo I use this Polaroid film called Polaroid Type 55. It was my favorite film. (They do not make it any more.) You use a 4x5 camera witch takes photos like no outer camera. The best digital camera cannot even compare to this 1950s camera. The film was even better when you shoot it you would peal it apart and there would be a Polaroid on one side and a negative on the other. You would have to take the negative and put it to a salt water bath then dry it. Then you could use it to make traditional black and white prints.

How I shot this photo. It came to me from an idea I had to incorporate the sport with the person doing it. I asked my friend BJ lines if I could get a photo of his family and him before we went out and shoot for the day. I shot a few photos of them and did not develop the film. We when out to the snowboard park and I put the same film back in the camera and shot over it with him snowboarding. Dubbed exposing the film. The best part was you never knew how it was going to come out. When I develop the Polaroid and saw the results I was stoked. People now a days would say why don’t you just do it in Photoshop. If you are some one thinking this then you may never get it. That is part of thing getting lost.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Distasteful Nudes by Ian Ruhter???

This is why you should not make bets. My friend Cary Perez, Andre Sandoval, Jordan Thomas and my self made a bet and who ever lost would have to do a photo shoot and the others would decide what the concept was. Well Cary lost the bet and this is what we came up with. On the way out to go shoot this we were thinking there is no way he would go through with this. For one Cary has never been on a horse before. Two he had to get naked ha-ha. We all started laughing our ass off when he got naked and climbed up there. I could hardly keep a straight face shooting this. I have to give him props he did not back out of it. This inspired me to start a new collection of photos called Distasteful Nudes. Lol……