Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Angels On High

A place reborn, where bright mysteries beckon from quiet corners of spirit and time, where fine columns; each crowned by a watching angel, rise like great trees--friends talk gently there, as if walking together deep in the woods..... -Douglas Max Utter: Artist, Writer.

There's this place. An amazing place.  A place where the building speaks to you.  It welcomes you and smiles down upon you.  And they filled it with beautiful artwork and invited us to stay a awhile.  I wanted to live there.  I still want to live there.

I'm not sure what it is about this place but it has a wonderful peacefulness about it.  Perhaps it's because it was born and lived out one life as a church.  Or perhaps it's because it's now owned and occupied by people who love it and care for it as if it were a treasure.  Either way, it is lovely in spirit and appearance.  I think of it like a computer, data in, data out.   Beauty in, beauty out.  

The Place: Josaphat Arts
The Art: Convivium33 Gallery: 21st Century Expressions of the Second Sex

We visited here as part of a Hidden Cleveland Tour.  These tours are sponsored by Downtown Cleveland Alliance. Also on this tour, Trinity Lutheran Church, Chapel at St. Vincent Medical and Cleveland Masonic Performing Arts Center.

To see more pictures go here.

One more thing, one of the artists exhibiting is an incredible photographer Garie Waltzer, who lives in Cleveland.  She's amazing, check her out! 

Photographs projected on vintage linens.  This was such a lovely installation.  The photo does not do it justice.

Doors found at a Paris flea market.

Angels are original to the building and are everywhere keeping watch.

Notice the angels lining the hall above the columns.

The stained glass windows were removed and given to another church but
remaining frosted glass adds a nice soft filter to the spilling light. 

Clouds above - art below.

Totally Spent

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Walking On Eggshellland

No visit to NE Ohio would be complete without a visit to eggshellland (that's right, no spaces).  40,000 + enameled eggshells kinda speak for themselves...

Oh, and there's a movie too: eggshellland

My nephew JT and his friend Jordan

Boys have such a great fashion sense...

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Sunday, April 10, 2011

High Expectations

We were there for Cleveland's PechaKucha #12 but it quickly became clear that the space and the view were the stars of the program.
"PechaKucha Night was devised in Tokyo in February 2003 as an event for young designers to meet, network, and show their work in public. It has turned into a massive celebration, with events happening in hundreds of cities around the world, inspiring creatives worldwide. Drawing its name from the Japanese term for the sound of "chit chat", it rests on a presentation format that is based on a simple idea: 20 images x 20 seconds. It's a format that makes presentations concise, and keeps things moving at a rapid pace." ~
The event took place on the 10th floor of the historic Higbee Building in what was once a dramatic auditorium space but in recent years is rarely shown or opened to the public.  This is what sold me on attending the event.  Most people could not resist but be drawn to the windows and the view.  As the night progressed the changing light drew us back again and again.  Better than TV and funner than texting.

The presenters were a mixed bag.  Many were obviously talented, creative and unique.  And local.  Cool.  Some presentations leaned a bit more towards 400 second infomercials.  Wheat meet chaff.  Anyway, high expectations aside, it was an energetic scene in a terrific location.  Hard to complain when you're up in the sky with your friends, a glass of wine and staring at the view.

For more about the event and the presenters: PechaKucha Cleveland

To see my entire set of photos click here.

Lake Erie Between the Buildings

The May Co. - White Building On Left 

My People

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Cool Cleveland

A few weeks ago I was honored to start a creative relationship with Cool Cleveland, a very fine e-newsletter, on-line magazine and blog that reports on and celebrates Cleveland.  I respect their work and have used them personally as a go-to source for events and information for years.  Part of their appeal is that they stray from the common path and provide community insight that you may not see elsewhere.  They have great appreciation for the arts and a true love for our City.  So, I was thrilled to contribute.  It's a great match!

The photo shown above is one of my favorites because it's a picture of Suite Lorain (The Vintage Department Store).  This place is one of the reasons I fell in love with Cleveland.  It's mid-century bizarre and beautiful.  Everything you've ever wanted or [didn't] need from the 50s, 60s, and 70s.  (Ugh, are the 70s "vintage" already?)

The links below will take you to other CC issues where my photos have been selected to accompany the lead message written by founder Thomas Mulready.   It's a great pleasure working with these folks and I hope it continues for a long long time.   I'll keep adding links to this post as my pictures are used.

In the meantime, sign-up for the newsletter or friend them on Facebook.  They're a great resource for local information!

Suite Lorain

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Fast Impressions

I was minding my own business. Really.  I was caught up in taking a picture of something.  Something small.  Something inane more than likely.  That's when he stopped me.

Take my picture, he said.

Realizing he hadn't asked nicely, he tried again.

Please.  Would you please take my picture?

Um, sure.

I moved him into the light.

And then he started chatting.  He explained he had been at a party to celebrate the end of his buddy's life last night and that's why he smelled of alcohol.  And he did.  He reeked.  He apologized about that.  Seeing the concern on my face he quickly explained it was a bachelor party, bad joke.  He apologized again.

He continued on, he was a tattoo artist in Kent and was in law school too perhaps?  Not sure.  The details are kind of fuzzy.  The details were flying and there were lots of details.  There was something about a Russian connection, a dance competition and a woman who's entire body he had tattooed.  Everything.  Everywhere.

As he was talking I was taking pictures and had a chance to study him.  Slowly he came into focus for me. His lip was split and if you look closely you can see he has a shiner under his right eye.  When he took his hat off he had an angry red gash on the top of his head.  Polite.  Self aware.  Nice smile.  Cool jacket.

He invited me to come take pictures at the tattoo shop when it opened.   He told me the name but I've forgotten it.


Sure, he said.  You have a nice camera and seem to know what you're doing.

I do?  Ok.  Sure I'll come.

And as quickly as he appeared he was gone.   Except for these images.

Sunday, April 3, 2011


I took this photo last Friday on opening day for the Cleveland Indians.  We know it's spring around here when we start to see the the Goodyear Blimp trekking up from Akron and hovering around the city.  This is a scene I've been wanting to capture for a while.  I just never took the time to stop.  I always seem to be speeding by to get somewhere.  When I saw the blimp waiting there for me I just had to stop.

This photo is part of a set I've been working on for a couple of years.  It's a tribute to Cleveland.  A series of 'postcards and letters' to my adopted hometown.  Often I view this city with a vintage eye.  I imagine it as it once was.   Perhaps it's because I'm on a mission to romanticize the world around me.   Or perhaps it's me putting lipstick on a pig.  Either way, it's what keeps me driving aimlessly through the side streets and places I have no damn business being in.  Sometimes romance can be elusive.   Obviously.

To see the entire set click here.