Annie Leibovitz At Work

Almost a year between posts is of course an indication of what I think about blog posts which isn’t very positive. Then why post a year and two days after my last post? For myself, a reminder of books read, shows I’ve seen and other things.

So to the book - At Work Phaidon, 2008 a wonderful memoir and a page turner by the amazing and prolific Ms Annie Leibovitz about her relationship with photography and people, leading us through her accounts of famous and not so famous moments of making images.

She starts at her beginning, her first adventure with her camera in Japan hiking up Mt Fuji with her Minolta SR-T 101 and barely enough film. She realized that if she was going to be a photographer then her constant companion would be a camera so she strapped it across her body and set off with her younger brother. She didn’t realize how heavy the camera would become as she climbed or just how much film she should have packed but she made it to see sunrise atop the mountain with a few frames left to record the moment.

Kendrick Lamar, The Bronx NY 2018  by Annie Leibovitz

Kendrick Lamar, The Bronx NY 2018
by Annie Leibovitz

“ I took this, my first experience with a camera on the road or path, as a lesson in determination and moderation, although it would be fair to ask if I took the moderation part to heart. But it certainly was a lesson in respecting your camera. If I was going to live with this think, I was going to have to think about what that meant. There wasn’t going to be any pictures without it. “

And so it goes from traveling with Hunter S Thompson to photographing Queen Elizabeth. One of our great portrait photographers believes she ‘sort of backed into’ portraiture “but it has turned out to be the mode in which I have expressed myself most fully. It has been a privilege to do this work”. Annie Liebovitz

"Patience is the calm acceptance that things can happen in a different order than the one you have in mind."

I'm not Nancy Regan when it comes to astrology but I am a causal reader of my horoscope. I can go weeks and not check it. Then I come across one that strangely connects to what is currently going on in life. 

Rob Brezsny's Free Will Astrology columns for the Stranger are thoughtful and different. Don't think he as ever reported that an Aquarius will meet their truelove, be a good week for starting a business, none of the usual stuff. Rob's weekly take on an astrological sign can be a helpful reminder that there is usually another way of looking at things or something else is going on that you hadn't considered. When I came across this recent one for Aquarius there was a moment of recognition: 

AQUARIUS (Jan 20–Feb 18): "Be stubborn about your goals but flexible about your methods" was the advice I saw on a woman's T-shirt today. It's the best possible advice for you to hear right now. To further drive home the point, I'll add a quote from productivity consultant David Allen: "Patience is the calm acceptance that things can happen in a different order than the one you have in mind." Are you willing to be loyal and true to your high standards, Aquarius, even as you improvise to uphold and fulfill them?

How stubborn and flexible can I be? 

I can be very flexible when it comes to handling life's randomness but many times too flexible. I can subjugate my plans and ideas to make others happy. This has definitely slowed me down when it comes to realizing what I want to do since I can change my mind too easily. Does this mean I don't think what I want to do is important? Probably but I've recently been working on that and it feels good to be stubborn. 

How patient and accepting am I that things can happen but not how I think they will? 

Very! I realize I have always been working towards doing what I want and need to do which is simply to be myself. 

Now this is where it gets a bit interesting...

To being loyal and true to Aquarius high standards. Didn't know we had them.

Remaining flexible and ready to improvise in order to realize those high standards. Sounds like a martial arts move but I'm game. Maybe this is why it took me years to find the right furniture for the living room. There was always something to sit on even it was the floor but it took years to find all the pieces that were right for me and the room. 



“Be stubborn about your goals but flexible about your methods.”
— Seen on a T-shirt

The Big Sleep

Philip Marlowe: What it is you're trying to find out? You know, it's a funny thing. You're trying to find out what your father hired me to find out, and I'm trying to find out why you want to find out.

the big sleep

“He must be a complete man and a common man and yet an unusual man… He is a lonely man and his pride is that you will treat him as a proud man or be very sorry you ever saw him. He talks as the man of his age talks, that is, with rude wit, a lively sense of the grotesque, a disgust for sham, and a contempt for pettiness.” Raymond Chandler describing the archetypal fictional detective in The Simple Art of Murder (1950) 

The Big Sleep has one of the best film scripts at times very confusing but always entertaining. Watching Bogart do a comedic take on what I think is a book collector is priceless. 

Don't know if anyone was as lovely as Lauren Bacall and that statin charmeuse evening robe that she comes out in towards the middle of film when Bogart brings home her little sister is amazing.

Wish the film had been in color.