Giles Caron burst onto the scene in the sixties in an explosion of productivity. During his brief five year career, he produced over 570 stories before disappearing in Cambodia at the age of thirty. He had planned on quitting because his career arc, covering several back-to-back vicious wars, had already taken it’s toll on him. He never had the chance and on April 5, 1970, Caron went missing on Route 1 between Vietnam and Cambodia.
It’s been warm this month, dragging out that perfect Autumn moment into an entire month of brilliant trees and life outdoors before it’s time to hunker down.
Paul Jasmin, a Los Angeles based photographer and instructor at Pasadena’s Art Center, has a new book out, California Dreaming.
Many of the photographs have been shot in and around my apartment on Wilshire Blvd. A lot of them where done just a bit more than one year ago, especially for the book. So most of the images are from the last two years.
– Paul Jasmin
The older I get, the more I realize that it´s all about dreams. That´s why I like California – it´s all about dreaming. Especially when your young, it´s the dream that keeps you going. That´s what I enjoy taking pictures of, these young people, dreamers, striving to become an actor, a model or an artist. Many of the images in the book are of kids of friends.
– Paul Jasmin
All my images are from a movie in one way or another. It´s a sort of romanticism. They reflects alot of me in that age – I was born in Montana but I wanted to go to Hollywod and become an actor.
– Paul Jasmin
I am a Leica snob, a natural light shooter, a street shooter, a gear fetishist, and a die hard film shooter.
I had helped a friend get his Leica gear CLA’d so that he could sell the gear last year. He ended up changing his mind so I shipped his gear back to him. A few days ago, I discovered that I still had his SF20 Leica flash unit. I had never shot with a flash unit hot shoed onto my Leica before (sacrilege!) but that night I was heading to drinks for a co-worker off the Bowery.
So yeah, what the hell. Why not try it out? Especially as daylight savings time had just kicked in and all available light started to disappear each day around 4PM.
I must say it was fun to shoot without having to listen to my Nikon auto-focus engine complain as it tries to find an area of suitable contrast to lock in on. Focusing in low-light with the rangefinder was a dream. Setting it 1/50 sec at f8.0, I was able to freely shoot fast and unobtrusively, no pre-flash red light warning subjects of an incoming shot.
The bar was very dark and the SF20 is strong and bright. People were blinded for several seconds afterwards.
Here are the results. I must say it feels a bit silly to shoot happy snaps at a bar with a hot shoe flash unit on my Leica MP, but I also have to say that there is something really crisp and nice about these images. Granted, there is nothing outstnding about them but seeing that Leica quality on these snapshots is kind of cool.
Once I worked with the American Ballet. I started arranging my primitive lights when a voice shouted, “Stop, you have no right to put any lights here. You are not in the union.” “What do you mean?” “I said, “these are my lights; I am doing my work.” “You have no right.” I lost my patience and shouted back, “This is my daily work, my daily bread. You eat, I want to east, too.” He won the battle, and I was not happy.
Much later on I wanted to do something my way—with my conception—without complications. I took the dancers along and photographed them on a children’s playground dancing. Some children were playing hide-and-seek and the dancers started to mix with the children. Look at the adoration of the children in the picture. This was a fantastic moment captured in a photo. The dancer, which is the glamour, and the children. the publicity manager sent the photos over to Life magazine. They came back to one and a half years later: “We do not find a place for using them.”
– André Kertész, Kertész on Kertész
That is what I inherited from my father, doing what I like and integrating that into long term projects, regardless of the medium. Like him, I don’t want to be in style, I want to hit where no one is expecting. It requires extreme self-discipline, and constant questioning.
– Sonia Sieff
Well I’ve done a lot of street photography in New York City so let me say something about that. New York is a constant parade of humanity. It’s a very familiar place, but it’s always changing. If you look around there are a lot of amusing juxtapositions, so yes, humor does play a definite part in my work and it’s an element in many of my Leica Gallery pictures that were shot in New York. By contrast, trying to take street pictures in L.A. is challenging. L.A. isn’t a walking city — I considered shooting drive-by pictures and I’m always taking pictures out of my car window, but then you have nowhere to park it. Let’s just say that L.A. isn’t as conducive to street photography.
– Misha Erwitt