It's been a while since I've had anything published, so when I read the call for work for a new collection of toy camera photography book last year I knew I had to submit some of my photographs.
The great people who are responsible for the book, put out a call for the book over a period of several months, looking for work in different categories, only one of which interested me.
I submitted two photographs in the "portrait" category and much to my surprise got them both in.
The first photograph was one of a friend and now fellow veteran Charlie Nichols. I first met Charlie while we were on active duty, and made the portrait of him while I was about to leave my active duty tour. I have felt that my photography is rather autobiographical and therapeutic in a way too, so it's really no surprise that I made his portrait at the end of my tour.
I really wish I was able to make more portraits of the wounded Soldiers I had worked with and gotten to know during that time, but I guess was compelled by some kind of professional courtesy or not wanting to invade on the privacy into the lives of the Soldiers I was helping take care of; of course there was the geography too, with me in Utah and the Soldiers in my platoon being in one of 10 other states. It's not that I didn't make any photographs at all of these Soldiers, in fact I made photographs of nearly all of them, but unfortunately they were for work and not art.
I was fortunate enough to be able to do some photography for the unit, even though it was anything but artistic. When a Soldier would in process into the unit, I would make a simple portrait of them that the platoon sergeants and case managers would use for memory purposes, because after they in processed, we would rarely see them. The platoon sergeants and case managers would use the photographs I made in the information sheets they kept on each of the Soldiers in their platoons. I know it was very useful to them and I glad I could find such a way to incorporate my photography into the mission.
But back to the portrait of Charlie..
Charlie was a part of a unit that had been mobilized in Afghanistan, he and four other Soldiers in his 40 Soldier unit came back with some form of cancer.
The other portrait I submitted to the book was from the fly fishing project I have been working on for the past couple of years. When I made this particular portrait it was my first trip to the Green River her in Utah to fish. I made this portrait within the first few minutes of the journey down the "A Section" of the Green, the only section that seems to face directly east. The walls of the canyon that surround the Green are pretty steep so unless the sun is directly over head there is little opportunity for any really good light. At least that has been my limited experience with the river.
The book is scheduled to published soon, so look for an announcement here, so you can buy your copy...
I'd like to thank the selection team for selecting my photographs, I appreciate the work they have done and look forward to seeing the final book when it is published.
I'd also like to thank these two men for letting me photograph them and for being a part of my photographic journey..