HYENA

No agenda. No desired goal. No end result. No achievement required. Just the cathartic process of letting go. I just make music, I just make pictures, I just write words. Hyena.

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SPIRITWOOD

Finally, I’m off the grid of humanity, off into a place where I can just drift and drive. After four hours, I’m out past the cell zone, out past the radio. My mind and my quixotic soul are now in complete congruence. And on into the silent sheets of rain I spin. Into God’s great sky of grey, folding into each breath of wind. I slow, feeling the pull of an easy magnetism and ease the car to the right. Before me, hundreds of ravens take to the air circling my car. They too are the blood and bone of me, and I…

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MARLIN

I find myself here over thirty years later holding onto the thread of just one memory. I was on a dock somewhere on this island, and a massive, gargantuan beast of a marlin was lifted off of a boat for all of us mere mortals to fathom. Christ, these were big men, real men who fought this sworded demon to its tumultuous death. So yes, I returned to the memory, the myth and started chasing down every boat launch and pier… until I found her. Females are the big ones, and she was a “Grander” tipping in at 1,004…

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THE BARBIE OF OIL

In an abandoned oil refinery, I drift alone under the 108 degree heat. The camel in me manifests, sucking water from one of my humps, my ghost appendage. I feel no thirst or hunger as my soul guides the process. I reside under the eclipse. I am so well accustomed to the loss of self, that photography becomes a complete and utter meditative process. My heart no longer beats and I no longer breathe. I am lost to myself, totally immersed and this is the space that I inhabit. Endorphins flow. The addiction to…

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GOLD OF AUTUMN

There was a time, when those who came to spawn were the only ones. They were soon followed by the fish who swim as rainbows, those who came to swallow the egg. Then came the bears with their dusted coats of caramel, all gathered for hibernations harvest. They dove out from the shores of the Kirkuit as brilliant acrobats into their shared river of life. All of them feeding a hunger that time alone and consequence has brought. As it has brought me. I am compelled however to speak of truth. I am here to…

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BELFAST

Yes, it emerged here on the streets of Belfast. Innocence, mine was about to be lost. It came by way of two children. And it was their smile, their youth, the exuberance, the joy. Held in a moment inside their bright blue eyes. In the opposite direction was an elderly man, shoulders narrowed from the weight of his life as he carried his invisible yoke with him up the delving road. He took me on life’s journey of sorrow that day, and I left my youth cutting the string to my own life. I’d like to go back to…

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SACCHARIN TREE

Saccharin Tree is my timeline; it represents the frozen years that are behind me. It is also about the unguarded creativity of youth, the loss of that innocence and then the slow reclamation of soul, which comes from spending nearly thirty years on the road as a documentary photographer. 

I am in search of answers. Blackened by life, I am the one legged albatross in search of salvation. Words, thoughts, reflections and artifacts will be added...

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ENTER HYENA

I was born in Edinburgh Scotland. Shortly thereafter, I was on a jumbo jet crossing the Atlantic, landing in the punch bowl of sunny, Southern California where I would spend my formative years surfing. But in retrospect, the first of my many rebirths was not until I reached my early 20’s. I was borderline idiot savant until I started to write with my left hand. This single event, allowed me to switch from left brain to right and the photographer I am today, the hyena was born.

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A FEATHER FALLS

It began here, from the 5th or 6th roll of film I ever let spool through a camera. I’d maybe shoot a roll of film a week, but I knew early on that I was drawn to photojournalism. So, I bought a scanner from Radio Shack, and would drive around comatose Santa Barbara in my ’65 Mustang waiting for something, anything to break loose. Desperate as a treeless squirrel, my camera, mind and soul were all for rent. Driving back home on an uneventful day, a screaming red blur of fire trucks stampeded by. So I flipped…

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THE BLVD INTRO 

I spent 3 1/2 years on foot chronicling, looking for the last few glimmers, the last few rays of hope the blvd had to offer before that chapter closed. I too was cleared, evicted from my rent controlled Villa Carlotta. We gotta make way for the next big wave of money, and that wave, totaling billions, would change the face of everything. It already has. The graffiti, the spray paint, the murals have all been consumed, white washed, purged and painted over. The six mile circuitous walk I used to hammer provided hundreds of growing, ever evolving works of art in varying states of decay. The streets, the blvd, was a living breathing entity. That same walk today yields only two sanitized pieces. The voice of the blvd, born from the hands and minds of so many talented men and women has now moved on too. I am fortunate to have walked the blvd in its perfect time. We are both now obsolete, and our time in this era is now done. Above and below are excerpts and photographs from the blvd project.  

 

THE MICROCOSM

For the blvd. it was a day that unfolds only so often. The convergence of souls, the dance between the atoms, the energy was perfect. It began in the deep light of winter’s shallow afternoon. A man, pink and sweating was running small twenty-yard non-concentric circles in the top half of an empty parking lot. I gather he’s getting some exercise and he must have a thing about waiting for traffic lights to change. Either that or he’s a human goat tied to an invisible spike in the asphalt that only he could see. I asked the guard who’d just let in his first car. “Hey, that guy been up there for a while, he’s really giving it hell?” “Yeah man, I think he’s nuts. He’s already fallen over twice. I’m gonna have to get the cops here pretty soon if he doesn’t leave.” “Good luck with that” I offer, heading back down further into the blvd. My window perch where I do most of my writing awaits, empty, screaming at my half tired cerebral ass. It has provided both a grace and graceless view, and today is no exception. The beanery of choice is Starbucks, not because they provide the best coffee, but because they have on offer an accessible bathroom that others do not. 

 At the moment, suffering through our current economic paranoia they have chosen poorly, and have overcompensated by laying off two of their four staff. This puts twenty people deep waiting to order and another twelve to fifteen have walked in looked at the line and left. In the middle of this silent debacle, a black stretch limousine pulls slowly into the red zone with the driver promptly exiting a man contained within an exquisitely tailored, immaculate suit. His shoes are also perfect, as was the hair parted perfectly to one side. Graciously, he made his own way to the door. Once inside, he briefly surveyed the line, and in a moment of inspired genius, swanned his way past the patrons to the front and tried to place his order. Some words were thrown, and the immaculate man was forced to wait with the peasants and returned to his place at the back of the line. He pulled out his blackberry and sent a text to his driver who pulled away moments later. He then scanned his PDA, looking for words of wisdom in times such as these, and probably found his own words staring back at him. The man standing before me was Deepak Chopra, forced into commonality. Out the window from a distance, came another vision. She was a Latina of average height, hair dyed auburn in a crème and beige perfectly matching ensemble with cheeks blessed with a little too much rouge. The mind bender was what she had balanced on her left arm. I stared in disbelief as she moved closer and closer into my view, my window. Onto my soft retina it settled. It was her gelatinous double, with the exact same clothes, same hair dye, and same make-up. And the way the arms giggled, man I tell you, it looked like her three-year-old identical twin. I can only imagine the conversations she must be having with herself. Or the guy on the receiving end, the guy who had to fabricate her miniature, taking all the measurements. I couldn’t tell if she was married, but that would be a tough work around for the husband. I’ve never seen her since, but that is the way of the blvd., all of us taking in the same air, all of us exhaling our converged energy. The man with the two Oscar’s license plate drives by for the second, still desperate time. I don’t know, maybe his two best friends are named Oscar? He’s now looking though at two other guys, and so am I. Outside, pressed against Frederick's windows are two tattooed handcuffed men placed there by the desire and hunger that has brought them here. The sun, it bends off the windows and into their eyes, while the sweat-less men in black do God’s given right. I snap their indignity into my little black box for safekeeping and reflection, entering the stream of consciousness that makes up our world. The blvd is simply a microcosm, a three block radius, and it’s a trailer to the movie I call life.

MOTION + SOUND