Posts Tagged ‘Santa Barbara Photographer’

Oceanlovers, Blue Ocean Sciences, Creativity and Commerce

Wednesday, July 10th, 2013

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Note. click on any of the images to see them large and in full scale.

In this post are a few images from the past week shooting surf. It has been a remarkable Summer in that I never get to create a lot of high bar work around Ventura and Southern California this time of year. Weather and swell rarely line up as they do during our Winters. A warm and pleasant surprise is occurring!  That is one of the great things about Surfing. You never know when the presents will arrive. It keeps your appetite whetted and hones a weather eye which is innate to all of us who live attached to the Sea.

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I work in some far reaching company endeavors these days. Two massive scale projects are Blue Ocean Sciences and the Ocean Lovers Collective. What those two groups are doing, is pretty incredible, really.  I never imagined being involved in something that could change the world, ever!  But it appears that I am.

I wrote about some of that on the Oceanlovers “Beyond a Blog” education asset today, in a piece titled The Blue Forge. I recommend it for anyone who believes they need to “save” something or someone.

I have long maintained that we really cannot save anything, our goal is to contribute, and to flow, in that is happiness and the good fruit of healthy change.

You can find some my commercially available image work at Corbis images here.  Corbis has been a great asset and help to me over almost 15 years and they supply my work to a large number of clients around the world with instant download delivery, and easy licensing.

And yes, believe it or not, I am always available to discuss shooting projects in Motion or Stills, from weddings like this one, I did as a guest for fun, for my friends at Paradise Pantry as a gift, to just about any subject one can imagine. Yea, weddings SHOULD be fun things. They are all about happiness!

I love it all, and am well qualified in every way. Should I not have the time or acumen a project requires, I connect that project to one of my remarkable colleagues. We are a talented bunch. Best people in the world in more ways than one would expect, and what we do adds ease, efficiency, affordability and an exceptionally high bar of imaging and content creation. There is literally no aspect of Motion Picture or Stills creation that we are not masters of, and many of us have a long list of imaging awards from Emmy’s to Film Festival wins as well as Journalism and Commercial successes to our credit.

Seth Godin has a bit to say about “The Bar”, here in his post titled: “But it only works sometimes”.

In fact, this concept of collective development is outlined further below, in a growing Venture amongst Artists at Oceanlovers.

You can  support the work of Ocean Lovers and Blue Ocean Sciences by patronizing our online store here! We all really appreciate it, and it helps feed sustainable growth AND the Artists.  The funds go to project development. In many Orgs, only a fraction of income goes to the Artists or the causes. In this one, almost every dime fuels change that matters, and the people who drive it. The products themselves are highest bar, in terms of Art and quality.

Aloha oe.

The Supermoon

 

 

 

Pick a Lane

Wednesday, April 4th, 2012
Salud Carbajal

Salud Carbajal

 

In life and in our Western Cultural assessment of what will inevitably amount to a rather short term existence on this blue ball, we are constantly encouraged by the status quo, to “pick a lane” for ourselves. Or at least, this was the method employed till this latest socio-economic meltdown. The concept was to attend school, move in to a field that would best suit our fiscal goals, and supply the road to our own future happiness. Each day, you were to  arrive at that job, and park right between the lines. Never vary that. Or face severe retribution from the system.

A lot has  changed. I will look at that a bit in the coming months.

The image above was shot a week or so ago in Santa Barbara at the Courthouse, and is my contribution to a collection of digital assets to be used in the re election campaign of Salud Carbajal, Santa Barbara County Supervisor. I also shot some work for Doreen Farr and her Supervisorial campaign as well.

Speaking with them both, confirmed research done when I had vetted the job by doing some online checking and making a couple phone calls prior to taking the gig, which was with my friend and colleague Rob Dafoe, who I am a creative partner with. I found Doreen and Salud to be passionate, respectful, educated people, who possessed a compassion for their community.

Tough gig, the narrow lane of local political office. The job description itself, demands that you stay between the lines of Govt authority, yet still have daily contact with your constituency. This creates a choice. You embrace the relationship, or build a wall, a lane so to speak, and stay there. Each position has benefit, as well as risk. It really is a service position, that of local Govt Office. It was great to meet two servants and in turn serve them with my ability as an image maker.

I chose my lane in life a long time ago when I decided what I would serve. The reality is that everyone must serve something. Service begins in the heart. One does well to attend to the heart first. Out of it will come the issues of your life.

As we begin a look at this, I recall my early education in Photography. Conventional wisdom stated that you select a subject and become that. A Nature Photographer, Photojournalist, Wedding Photographer, Surf Photographer, whatever, and you parked between the lines and were that, which brought in your income. Understandable, that Philosophy. But knowing where it led, I never followed the tiny golden thread into any of those boxes. To do so always seemed flat out stupid to me. (Think rabbit in a box trap)

That is because I came to serve.

Go in to a box, and this limits both who you serve, and the ability of your own soul to thrive and grow.

As I erased the lines which defined my own existence, constantly eschewing becoming niched and parked, I learned something pretty special. Limits are all about fear. Placing them, staying within them, acknowledging other’s rules for our own existence, may make for a somewhat stable cultural environment for the moment, but I have rarely seen them bring anyone any real happiness or sense of satisfaction.

Say you were to lose all today. Where would you be?

Look down. You are standing there. In your own space.

Erase the lines.

Thrive.

Don’t do it to others, don’t allow that restriction to be placed upon you.

Here is a link to a blogpost from Seth Godin which contains his new online version of “Stop Stealing Dreams“, a piece on modern education that everyone who wants a wide lane through life should read!

In the course of an Eight day period (which I am in the midst of right now) I am shooting and filming subjects that range from below sea level to the mountains. If I had ever bought in to the conventional wisdom surrounding my craft and trade, well then, you would likely have not much interest in my common material.

But since my choice was to erase my lines as a Creative early on, I am able to bring forward the most remarkable aspects of Creation. I am continually in awe. Even when sitting in a crew van, waiting to meet two dedicated Santa Barbara County Supervisors.

The following gallery of images are from projects I had in front of me THIS WEEK. Obviously the folks who want to call me a Surf Photographer may have missed the mark when they for whatever reason, wanted to put me in their box.

Some of them are for this cool new project. The Solitary Exposure Collective, which I am building with my colleague, Larry Beard.

Here is the link to my work in it, which grows in scope monthly. Eventually, much of it will be available via Commercial license. What Larry and I have done, is build the foundations for an art collection that is a new type of agency. Right now you can buy art and have it delivered to your door ready to hang. Or just glance through the open collection and maybe get inspired to redraw the lines in your own life. We would like that. It makes us all better.

Click on any of the images for a full view or to toggle through as a slide show.

 

 

Gaviota Muse

Thursday, October 7th, 2010
Gaviota Muse

Gaviota Muse

Robb Havassy is up visiting right now. Yesterday, I got to introduce the publisher of the culturally iconic book Surf Story, to Joe Cardella, who among a long list of artistic accomplishments, was also the creator and publisher of Art Life, a leading collectible monthly publication. Joe’s stint at the helm was twenty five years long.

I smiled on the inside, as both of these amazing men, were people that Mary Osborne insisted that I meet. Mary rarely does that: insists. So, when she calls me, and then follows up, I know I had better pay attention. For over twenty two years, Mary has been my muse. We have  co- conspirited each other’s careers and colored each other’s life and creative vision. Now here sat Robb, Joe and I.

Mary Carmel Osborne

Mary Carmel Osborne

Robb was in town to speak with a few people about contributing to Surf Story Volume 2. Curiously enough, most of the artists cum surfers have connections to the Gaviota Coast and of course the Ocean. Joe, by virtue of his next large project after retiring as Art Life publisher was the first conversation, of what may be three days, awash in the influence of the people who live lives connected to the ocean here.

So it did not surprise me that Robb, Joe and I sat in one of the amazing rooms in Joe’s home and that the subject turned to that of the muse and their role in our lives. Plans were made. They involved muses. As we chatted about some of ours, and how they influenced us, my thoughts went from Mary, to the many people who have driven and continue to push my work.

Today I have a show that opens in Santa Barbara at Couch, with fellow artist Glenn Gravett. Here is the invitation.  It will be my first show in my home town in twelve years. Curiously enough that last show was with both Glenn and Rob Heeley in their gallery workspace on Canon Perdido.

Below is the description for the installation, which will be in place for a month.  Curiously enough, this show is all about one of my most significant muses, the Gaviota Coast. Two of the center pieces in the show are large nude illustrative compositions of both Mary Osborne, and Jeanette Ortiz, which were shot in two very significant locations on the Gaviota Coast, and carry deep resonance with the history of the Chumash tribes native to that coastline, and my own rich experiences under what I have been cognizant of experiencing in their footprints, and under their gaze.

The show was custom designed by Glenn and I, in collaboration with the artists at Pi Studio Printing. It was a huge group effort, and tonight’s opening should prove a great opportunity to experience quite a cross section of amazing artists on First Thursday in Santa Barbara.

Coastal Blossom

Coastal Blossom

Gaviota Nude

The modern day boundaries of the Gaviota Coast extend from Coal Oil Point in Goleta at the South, to the Northernmost location of Point Conception, which is the Westernmost tip of the Continental United States, and is also known as the Western Gate to the original occupants of this land. That was the spot where native legend has it, their souls would leave earth at life’s end.

The Gaviota Coast was originally populated by multiple tribes of Chumash natives.

As a part of the California Missions land acquisitions, which took that coast from the Chumash, was the largest Spanish Land Grant in the Continental United States: the land which became known as Rancho Dos Pueblos. Today a shrinking Rancho Dos Pueblos is still owned by the Schulte family, who for decades, in the tradition of the Californian ranch and land operator, have been faithful stewards.

In Memoriam. Rudi Schulte

In Memoriam. Rudi Schult


It was my good fortune to grow up along this coast. I have walked, swum, surfed, fished, dove and sailed every inch of it, in a massive triangle, which ranges from Goleta, out to the Channel Islands and up to Point Conception, and every point in between. I have photographed quite a bit of it over the years.

This show is a very limited look at, and homage to, the amazing spirit of this stretch of coastline.  If you take anything away from this collection,  may it be the understanding that the spirit of the Chumash people still occupies this place, and it should forever be treated with reverence and respect.

David Pu’u

Gaviota Campfire

Gaviota Campfire

Walking Backwards

Tuesday, September 28th, 2010
Dark as Night

Dark as Night

When growth really isn’t.

This was inspired by a conversation with my oldest son Joshua, as he and I were looking at what defines our paths forward.

“I think a life for music is a well-spent one.”
-Luciano Pavoratti

Light Dance

Light Dance

What I have learned, is that the  things which I embrace and implement into my life, act as filters. They color my perceptions and growth, or lack thereof.

Peace

Peace

Did you know that sometimes growth is not such a great thing?

I have found that often the most remarkable creative moments are happened upon by walking in place, or even backwards so that your perception is in step with a reality that growth would have taken you away from.

This is why, within the context of an artist’s life you will see periods of work, that history will later describe as being great, definitive of that person’s ability to do whatever it is, he or she does.

Warhol would not have become Warhol, or Monet become synonymous with such a definition of a style, were it not for this.

Seth Godin had this to say about taste and fashion today.

Sapphire Surreality

Sapphire Surreality

This week I had multiple big projects to assess. Work with civic action groups endeavoring to fix some things in my town, designing a shoot and campaign for a prestigious ocean lifestyle marque, looking at how growth should go for a very promising Corporation, and designing an Art show on the “Gaviota Coast”, which is under assault by developers due to it’s pristine nature.

Gaviota Local

Gaviota Local

I saw something being repeated to me in each project. Sometimes the way forward, is really found in walking backwards a bit.

You are never really sure how the variables will be forward. But looking back, you will know. Because it happened.

Want a good future?

Watch where you step. It will determine the view.

Change

Change

Blur

Wednesday, May 6th, 2009
Adam Gray-Hayward

Adam Gray-Hayward

Remember what it was like as a child, where in your grassy yard on a Summer’s day, you held arms outstretched, tilted head back and whirled around in circles? The scenery would whiz by in an increasing blur. A fun thing to do, as you examined play options.

The whirling activity sort of is my life this beautiful spring day, with birds singing outside as the morning expands.

I am looking at a lot of things right now. One interesting piece was just sent to us by Elmar Von Hoesslin (Donna’s ex husband)  and is a creative look at his Berlin based company. I liked Elmar from the moment I met him, as he and Donna had traveled through California and stopped in to visit. This video says a lot about why. Curiously, the subjects AND the length are similar to the film that Donna and I are creating for Intuit which is titled Passages.

In addition to working on my girlfriend’s film, I have been deep in study for a project. I use books for reference. I love books and own a LOT. There is no substitute for them in the digital realm. Books require an investment in time, money and physical space. They have weight. They require a commitment that digital content examined on the computer does not. You cannot press enter or delete. They have an analog form. Sort of in the same manner as our physical bodies do. Probably why I like em.

In front of me is a book entitled Toni Frissell, Photographs 1933-1967. Toni’s work was so very diverse that I believe she would be thrown out of most Art and Photography schools today, which encourage an aspiring professional to focus on one thing. Fashion, Journalism, Portraiture, Art and yes WATER! Toni shot it all, and did it so well that she will live forever in her imagery.

As I flipped the pages, my eyes fell upon a paragraph with yellow highlighted words (a study tool I learned in school) which I had applied maybe 12 years ago on the page. The paragraph reads:

1. Catch the subject at an instant of pleasure or emotion.

2. Know your subject’s interests beforehand (highlighted)…this so you can get him or her talking, even to the point of saying something provocative to the extent of outrageousness.

3. Click your camera at typewriter speed. Film is a cheap commodity.

4. Luck-the commodity that puts one at a crucial event and the chance is given a vital instant. (highlighted)

Below in my own hand I had written these words:

Preparation breeds foresight, foresight gives birth to opportunity.

In doing my research I found the seed which gave rise to the tree bearing the fruit of my own career and in looking through her imagery once more, I found my own self. It was shocking to me,  and caused a slowing down. The whirling scenery stilled and pulled into focus.  God I love books. You cannot press delete!

The project I am designing will invite a select group of subjects on to a friend’s estate where we will spend some time on a one of a kind property which has locations that are the photographic equivalent of gems in a crown. I will have an assistant or two, a small crew, wardrobe and the new Canon 5DM2 and new RebelT1i. We will also be shooting some motion picture. It could possibly be one of the more ambitious projects that I have endeavored to do. Time will tell as the process unfolds.

These sort of loosely scripted shoots have generally been looked at askance by some of my colleagues with the possible exception of Shawn Frederick whose challenge: “You think that you can do something better than anyone else? So do it!” always rings in my psyche. So I just do, and the images without fail end up being something that rewards both myself, subject and crew in multiple ways. It is sexy, exhilarating, adventurous, artistic, wearing, emotional, fun and well, REAL. But there is zero fiscal motivation for me. It costs in that way.  It can be terrifying as you are banking the recovery of the time and money of all involved in long term return. I don’t think the IRS likes em(my shoots) either.

The imagery below is a sampling of a few in the “Because I can” genre. Friends, colleagues, special people and moments.  Some have passed on but they live in the imagery. From Academy Award winners and famous covers, to simple snapshots.  Click on any of the images for the back story and a full view. There are fifty one here.  I have a lot more.

© 2009 David Pu'u. All rights reserved.

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