If all goes as planned, at some point between now and the end of June, I will release a short film under the “From the Van with Dan” series about my time in Pittsburgh. There is a story here, friends, but one I don’t want to share too much of. Not yet anyway. This story is about a photographer and his influence on me as I was coming up in the photography world. He didn’t live in Pittsburgh but he certainly worked here while producing one of photography’s most legendary photo-essays. That essay etched itself into my still-developing brain and was something that clearly illustrated where the long-form, documentary bar had been set. Once you learn about this man, and you see the depth of his work, you can’t unsee it. You can’t unlearn what your eyes and brain have revealed.
I am not one to ever use a legend’s work on my site or channel. Those who do are scum in my mind. Tarnishing the work of a legend isn’t high on my to-do list, so when I do the great reveal it will up to YOU to find the man and find the work. Trust me, it won’t be difficult. But when you do, just know what it will do to you if the pursuit of the documentary picture is your goal. A clearing of the baffles might occur. The photographer in question spent five months in the city while shooting over 17,000 frames. He then delivered 10,000 prints and claimed he wasn’t finished. (I spent a few hours and shot about 50 pictures.)