Monthly Archives: May 2014

“I’ve learned that making a living is not the same thing as making a life.” -Maya Angelou.

With time and my own experiences, I now believe I understand these deeply profound words.

Thank you for all the wisdom you shared with us Maya. You will be missed.

Abstract architecture.

Sometimes looking up while walking is a good idea.

As I was thinking about Memorial Day and all of those who have bravely served our country, I thought about my uncle Bill and who was a B-24 pilot over the skies of German in 1945.

The more I thought about my uncle and the courage he had to captain his plane, it suddenly dawned on me that he was slightly older than my nephew Sean (pictured here) during the war.

I can’t image being 18 years old and responsible for the lives of eight crewmen and knowing that each time you flew out on a mission that there was a 55% chance that you would not make it back alive.

Although regrettably my uncle Bill passed away years ago, I thought it was fitting to photograph my father and my nephew holding a replica of the nose art on his plane the DNIF.

DNIF stand for Duty, Not, Involving Flying.

Crew of the DNIF.
Pilot: Lt. William W. Kuster.
Co Pilot: Lt. Felix M. Smith.
Navigator: 2nd Lt Francis G. Paul.
Engineer: Glen L. Pool.
Radio Operator: Angelo J. Pizzo.
Nose Gunner: John M. Burke.
Ball Gunner: Dominic F. Nigro.
Waist Gunner: Leo J. Keehley.
Tail Gunner: Robert C. Kaska.

Thank you uncle Bill and all that served to ensure and protect the freedoms that I enjoy today.

Happy Memorial Day.

Old Glory over Chi Town Glory.


Beauty comes in all different shapes, sizes,’s, and expressions. It is often an eternal quest for many and often over-emphasized by some cultures.

I’ve seen different representations of beauty all across the globe, however, NOTHING is as beautiful as a sincere, honest internal happiness expressed through a radiant smile.


Now this is a new beer I can support!

What should their tagline or slogan be?

I will announce the winner on Saturday!

Design by Spirograph? Let it sink in.

You are free to love without and agenda. —The Shack.

This little girl followed me around all day while in the slums of Dandora. Her younger brother was always an additional 5-8 feet behind her.

This was the only moment she allowed me to take her picture without running away or hiding her face.

Perhaps she just needed time to trust me and realize I had no agenda other than to capture a small portion of her beauty.

Her presence alone brought me great peace and joy in a very dark place.

The mission of a good portrait is to capture a slice of humanity. If done really, really well, a portrait should reveal the viewers humanity through the eyes of the subject.

Perhaps after seeing this image of a Maasai boy that I photographed in his village, will move me to see what else I might have captured.

For some reason, I have yet to look at any of my images I took in safari. Strange but true.

They say character comes from within. However, some people’s faces reveal more character than others.

Coming up in the world of professional photography you’re often left to learn on your own, drown with your mistakes and are often left to swim with the sharks.

The bussiness is really cutthroat and rarely did other photographers promote other photographers or teach you any of “their secrets!” @instagram and mobile photography couldn’t be more different than my past professional experiences. I find the sharing, connecting and meeting new people through @instagram so fantastic and rewarding.

I had a great day meeting several new people at the Chicago WORLD WIDE INSTAMEET today.

Plus, I loved hearing the sound of my old Pentax 645 film camera crank and spin as I took photos. Have to wait on seeing those image till I get them developed. Ah, the tension on waiting to see your shots. Delayed gratification, I love it!

Thanks @igerschicago and @johnmfrench. #wwim9_igerschicago, #wwim9_igerschallenge

Today I will be attending the Chicago WORLD WIDE INSTAMEET stating at 1:00pm.

In honor of how much this little app called Instagram and my mobile camera has changed my life, I will be going old school and back to my roots. I am dusting off one of my old film cameras and will be shooting with my Pentax 645.

I decided to post this image of the character Sean O’Connel from the movie Walter Mitty because several people have told me recently that I remind them of Sean O’Connell.

Although he has a slightly different hair style than me, I was touched my this assessment. I like the character of Sean O’Connell can get very intense when I take images. I understand his passion and sometimes can get “overly focused” when telling stories with my camera.

I also want to invite all the jjers that follow me to the event to support @igerschicago and @relaxocat. She does such a great job building community.

Here is to passion. Here is to great story telling! Here is to those that have inspired me and most importantly, here is to the moments in life when it is better to sit and observe than let the camera get in the way of the moment.

Things that are beautiful don’t ask for attention.

By consciously choosing not to bring attention to their beauty, these things are made even more beautiful.

Mothers often project and radiate this type of beauty. Their work is hard, constant, and often goes unnoticed.

Today, I celebrate and honor all the mothers I have had the good fortune to meet, observe, and serve this past year.

I also want honor and thank my own mother. To me should be enshrined into the Mothers Hall of Fame!

Happy Mother’s Day to all.

Do you like video enhance? School is almost over. What are the plans?

With cut and callused hands the size of a baseball mitts,this boat repairman greeted me with an open smile despite the sign that hung next to him.

As I looked around all I could see was carnage and destruction reaped upon every boat in view from hurricane #Yolanda.

Despite experiencing huge losses almost every Filipino person I met had such a welcoming and joyful personality on Bantayan Island.

I hope the recovery process is still going well and I get to visit my friends there again soon.

Into the nothing.

Gotham sleeps tonight.

Mobile Masters second edition for iPad is now available in the App Store and is FREE only today!

In my opinion the @mobilemasters ebooks are the best resources available on mobile photography, app stacking and what is happening in the world of mobile photography.

Great job and congratulation to @lovepaperplane, @mindsqueeze, @wesleygrim, @kanellos.

Daniel Marcolina does a fantastic job on these @mobilemasters ebooks and I will tell you, it is a real labor of love! There are so many great images, wonderful interactive design and engaging video content.

Thanks again Dan for asking me to speak at this years @macworldexpo. Loved working with you and @jackhollingsworth.

Some city.

With his smiling son just slightly behind him,this father living on Iling Island invited me into his makeshift resting area to get out of the blazing sun.

The cost the for the hospitality…a snap from my camera and the opportunity to see his face in my LCD screen.

I have been to Iling island three time and have never seen a mirror in any of the huts I have visited.

I couldn’t help and wonder if this was the first time this father and son had seen their images paired together.

As I was working late last night and driving home, I was complaining to myself about my commute and working late into the night.

I was in an air-conditioned car, head-lights on, full tank of gas, radio playing, sports drink in my hand and my cell phone at arms reach was fully charged.

Suddenly I thought to myself, “how could you complain about anything.” You are so lucky to have all that you do.

This image is us returning as the sun sets after we were done delivering solar lights. In essence this is what our evening commute looked like on Iling Island with @watts_of_love.


Many people love to give. It’s a great feeling, and they do so with no expectation.

Sometime people however, are awful at receiving, and really deprive others some of that joy of giving. If given a gift, they say, “You shouldn’t have,” “It’s too much,” Not a good response in my book.

These highschool students from the Kenya Children’s Fund made the experience of giving out their new @watts_of_love solar lights even more joyful than I could have imagine!

Let face it, some faces are just made to be photographed while expressing pure euphoria!