Tire Swing

Tire Swing
©2011 Shay Thomason. A little girl swings on a tire at a backyard wedding reception in LaPorte, Colorado.

Believe it or not, I wasn’t shooting a wedding when I captured this. I was actually in a wedding as a groomsman for my best-friend Zach, and this girl happens to be one of the pastor’s daughters. They had a backyard wedding reception and there was a tire swing in the very back that the little girl’s were playing on. I couldn’t resist once I saw what they were doing so I grabbed my camera and ran back there. I took about 3 photos and got this one. I was stoked.

Lost Photographs and the Art of Storytelling

This weekend Bethany and I watched the movie Citizen Kane. Originally released in 1941 and often considered one of the best movies ever made, the film follows the rise and fall of one man as seen and remembered by those who knew him. I had only heard a few things about the movie before watching it, but a big reason I wanted to see it was because I just finished reading Meaning at the Movies by Grant Horner in which he says that’s it not so much the story that grabs you, but the way the story is told.

I love a good story–who doesn’t? But a good story can rise and fall at the mercy of the storyteller. That’s why I love the story and videos below. Yes, the story is good, but more than that, the way this young man tells the story of how he was able to reunite a lost roll of film with it’s owner is just great. Take a few minutes and watch these little videos. I think you’ll be blessed.

Found: Lost Pictures of New York Blizzard (part 1)

Found: Lost Pictures of New York Blizzard (part 2)

Found: Lost Pictures of New York Blizzard (part 3)

If you can’t see the above videos, here are links to all three parts of “Found: Lost Pictures of New York Blizzard”: part 1, part 2, part 3

Jeff Bridges’ Photos Are Neat

I’m sure you’ve heard of the actor Jeff Bridges. Many know him as the “The Dude” from his 1998 role in The Big Lebowski, and more recently he’s been in Iron Man, TRON, and True Grit (which he’s been nominated for an Academy Award in). His film history as an actor is actually pretty extensive, and though I haven’t seen many of his movies, I have seen him on interviews and SNL and he seems like a cool guy.

But what many people don’t know (myself included) is that “The Dude” is a pretty good photographer. I was shocked today to come across some of his work and see that he’s got some excellent shots, all of which he gets using a Widelux camera and black and white film. According to his Web site, he started shooting back in high school, but for the past 16 films he’s done he’s taken his Widelux camera with him on set during filming. Once the movie is done being made, he puts together private photo books for all the cast and crew as a gift. Very cool idea, and these photos are just fun. Check out a few of his shots below and click on the photos to view the book they come from.

photo by Jeff Bridges

Can’t get enough of this style? Check out Jeff Bridge’s site for more of his work.

Flickr also has loads up Widelux shots (click to search). Below are some Widelux landscapes that are just fabulous:

Hand Made Shoes

I’m only posting this because I want to remind the world that there IS life beyond the computer. Okay, maybe that’s a reminder for myself, but I feel like in a world that is increasingly reliant upon technology that this kind of craftsmanship just doesn’t get the appreciate it deserves. I had the privilege once of visiting a guitar factory and I’ll never forget the feeling of watching people hand craft things — it’s inspiring, artistic, and all around just very cool.

The King’s Speech

The King's Speech Bethany and I don’t get out too often to see movies these days, but when we do we like to make sure we’re seeing something we’re going to like. When I saw the trailer for The King’s Speech I knew we would have to see it, and last night we finally did.

If I can use a British word, the film is brilliant. The story is heart warming and genuine, the nineteen twenties era is spot on, and the acting is some of the best I’ve seen. During the opening shot of the microphone I turned to Bethany and said, “I already like it”. From a cinematography standpoint it’s just a beautiful film. The production is high quality and they absolutely nailed the era of England in the twenties. Basically, it’s a film about two things: fear and friendship. I won’t give any spoilers away, but the IMDB description sums the film up this way, “The story of King George VI of Britain, his impromptu ascension to the throne and the speech therapist who helped the unsure monarch become worthy of it.” That’s a very fair explanation, but in no way is this a boring English movie. Colin Firth (King George VI) and Geoffrey Rush (the speech therapist, Lionel) are both just incredible in this movie, and the way their friendship is established is both funny and heart warming. Bethany and I talked about it the whole way home from the theater (which was about 20 miles away because it’s not playing everywhere) and we just couldn’t get over the characters and the nuances of each person. Needless to say, we highly recommend the movie. Yes, we know it’s rated R, and without getting in to how I feel about the useless rating system, I can say that if you’re an adult you can see this movie without any real awkwardness. It’s rated R for language, but I’m telling you that even the very few (about two) sections of language are actually quite funny. Though I don’t condone the use of poor language, I can honestly say I was laughing…a lot.

There are few movies that come out that I clap at the end, and this was one of them. If you’ve been waiting for a great movie to come out that you can catch, this is the one. Like I said, it’s a story about fear and friendship and if those concepts don’t capture your heart then you’re probably not living too well. Go see it–it won’t disappoint.

Here’s the trailer:

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