Valentino: the last emperor

Is a fabulous documentary about Italian fashion designer Valentino Garavani and his long time partner, Giancarlo Giammetti. The movie is quite touching and highlights a classic designers unwillingness to back down from his artistic principles in the face of pressure from corporate investors who see things only in terms of dollar signs. He certainly lived an extravagant and excessive life and justified it by saying that for the good of his brand he needed to perpetuate the fantasy that consumers of his designs could have a piece of it. Nevertheless a strong film.


Fall River - a subject in the NY Times today

I'm certain the times picked up this story due to the pandemonium surrounding Fall River Boys.

Nicole Bengiveno/The New York Times


April's 19th Century Photograph

Portrait of Mato-Wata-Kpe by Charles Milton Bell 1848-1893


Seth & Richard by George Towne

I saw the painting today that my friend George Towne recently finished of Seth & I today. Seth & I are very happy with it. George is a great painter and I am so happy to have been his subject. Here are a couple photos I took of George today and the painting.
You can see more of his work here.



I couldn't help myself...

Doug DuBois: All the Days and Nights

Hats off to Aperture for bringing this touching project and insightful work by photographer Doug Dubois to light.
All the Days and Nights spans almost twenty years of Doug photographing his family-since 1984 and the pains and trials that
befell them. Doug's documents with the respect and passion of a loving son the aftermath of his dad's fall from a commuter train and his mother’s subsequent breakdown and hospitalizations. The book is beautifully designed and edited and for me particularly resonates at a time when my family is experiencing so much sorrow in regards to my own ill mom. I thank Doug and his family for sharing this with us and appreciate the importance of affirming the painful moments of our lives. Aside from the more emotionally raw images All the Days and Nights contains many quiet lovely images.


Spreads from Fall River Boys

Check out my new book Fall River Boys at charleslanepress.com


Illness and Photography

I've been home in Chicago the past week visiting my mother in the hospital who has been through a tough time suffering from a slipped disc and a stroke. I brought my camera with me to the hospital mostly out of both habit and instinct. When I was there and saw through my own eyes how fragile and close to the edge my mother was and how emotional me and my siblings were I did question whether I should make any photographs in this situation. I thought about it and it felt right for me - that the camera was for me a way of extending and documenting my emotional state. The next day when my other sister was in the hospital room and noticed that I had my camera she became angry with me as she considered that my mother would never want to see herself in that condition. This naturally caused some tension between my sister and myself and I was not inclined to fight for this given the support we were all there to give each other. For me though this does raise some serious questions. Did I have a right to photograph my sick mother when she was weakened and unaware of my camera? Was the experience that I was going through in the hospital those three days mine to capture however I choose? If I were a writer and wrote a story or in my journal about that experience would my sister have that same defensive reaction?



On My Way - through the airport...

My former producer from the Microsoft campaign and friend Mary passed through the airport in Brussels and she
saw this lightbox display of the On My Way photographs I shot in 2007-2008. I think it looks really nice presented this way.