Creative: August Self-Publishing Project, Chapter Six

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Wyoming: Day One

My goal here is to give you a sense of this place through images that convey a specific mood.

Several things have changed.

1. Didn’t think I was going to use Hasselblad, but I now KNOW for sure I won’t be using it. Too many techniques.
2. No Instax. Sorry FBJ. Again, too many techniques makes it too crazy.
3. ONLY using Fuji for stills and motion.
4. Writing A LOT.
5. Goal is ONE image per day for the book, designed as doubletruck, with copy over.
6. There is no way I can get done what I want, but that’s okay. And I have no choice.

This technique of using digital and “live booking,” or creating one or two spreads a day while in the field, is something I’ve not thought that much about, but over the course of a 600 mile day I had plenty of time to think about it. The idea of attempting to make ONE great image per day with accompanying copy block is such an enticing thing to ponder. It makes things SO much more enjoyable because I now have a target. Will I make more than one image per day? Yes, hopefully, but when it comes to the book do I really need more? Will my family pay attention to more than that? The answer might not be something you want to hear.

Funny, cool or strange things that happened.

1. The weather was unreal. Everything. Rain, hail, sun.
2. Took the truck through some great country. Lots of mud. Even got mud INSIDE the car.
3. Desperate bartender comes us and just flat out asks “Who are you and why are you here?” I explain. She says, “Finally, someone who knows how to dress.”
4. Drunken guy at table next to me says to his friend. “I think I wanna fuck that guy up,” as a tourist walks down the street.
5. Laramie and surrounding area has not changed that much. Locals might differ but I was shocked.
6. Within a quarter mile of my hotel is a truck stop. Within a hundred yards of this truck stop I saw four mule deer, one whitetail hawk and various other creatures. Nature still fights on here.

This entire trip is about the book. Don’t forget that. The book drives my truck, my mindset and my plans. This might seem crazy but it’s actually quite fun and incredibly educational if you are someone who wants to put a story into the world. This trip is also a luxury but I can’t pay attention to much else, including the fact our country seems to be coming apart from the top down. So I work.

How is your book coming?

Comments 14

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  1. I absolutely love the idea of ‘live booking’ – what a simple, brilliant idea. Each photograph potentially helping determine the course of the book. Am so going to steal this idea for the future when I am back up and running.

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  2. An idea struck me as a result of this. ‘Live booking” would be a great collaborative project too – two or more people taking it in turns to add the next photograph. Something for me to noodle on ….

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      That was my second idea. Partner up with someone to do one of the things. Then you could do ONE thing.

  3. Love the idea of the “live booking” concept. Entries for what’s happening a the moment and driving the narrative! Nice!

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  4. My book is good, thanks for asking!

    Another screed of sorts on wealth in America, this time surrounding Wolfeboro, NH. No live booking from me, but I was building and rebuilding a shot list all last week, hunting down those representative pictures in my mind, and then on the ground. I think I have something.

    Like yours, mostly words. As long as I have a handful of the right pictures, I’m OK, and I’m pretty sure I have that.

    Your book sounds awesome.

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      My ugly, family book is coming along. It’s a mess actually but it’s what I’ve got. I like that idea of wealth. Can be scary but it’s the kind of scary we need to see.

  5. I’m reading … makes me really jealous. But the good kind, you know.
    Digesting your trip words one by one … Makes me wanna leave CA for greener pastures. Been feeling like that for a while.
    Life is too short. World is too big.

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      When you come to a place like this you look back at California with a new attitude. That attitude can be a positing thing, enforcing how interesting or unique California is, or it can be disheartening. People here do not like California at all. Our state represents everything they despise. Overcrowding, overdevelopment, etc. and they do not want us coming here because what typically happens is people from California come here and try to turn this place into what they had back home. They want the same everything and a place like won’t support it. Coastal folks come here trying to “preserve” a little piece of this for themselves and in the process destroy what this place is all about. I saw another example of this yesterday and it was sickening. We need to better educate our population but I can’t see that happening anytime soon.

  6. Hola Don Daniel,

    I am just back to our family cabin after ~6 weeks of boating up our coast and catching up on your writings (perhaps musings is the better word). I can identify with a lot of what your are saying…on a slightly smaller scale around here but, per capita, the same. I definitely didn’t get one good image a day but will look forward to making my photo journal book at the end of the year.

    ….And not unlike driving through mud I even got water IN the boat. 😉

    Enjoy your trip!

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      You have to keep the boat under 100mph. Same for the truck. Getting a “good” image a day is always on a sliding scale with the definition of good….

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