Life in miniature has always held a special fascination for me. Dolls, puppets, dioramas, architectural models, etc, all have their special allure. But none more than fashion dolls. Being a boy with two sisters and no brothers, Barbie was the center of the action at playtime in our home, but I was never allowed my own dolls. Like many boys of my generation, Ken and GI Joe were the closest I was permitted to come to "having a doll". This created a yen for them, which I largely forgot until I was an adult, doing portrait and glamour photography. Suddenly it came to me: "Hey! I can have a doll now!"
"Not only can I have them, I can photograph and film them, use them for music videos, photography and movies, just the same as live models and actors." This was around 2000, after I'd been doing portrait photography for years. I started with vintage Barbies, then found the contemporary Fashion Royalty dolls had more photogenic faces. The switch to fashion doll photography jogged a host of childhood sense-memory. Not only of playtime, but of those old claymation TV specials like Mad Monster Party and Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer that featured stop-action photography.
One thing led to another. I started out shooting mostly Sixties-Era Barbie dolls, then I found a contemporary fashion doll whose face I found irresistibly photogenic. A combination of Debbie Harry and Jean Shrimpton. The perfect 60's-80's hybrid, which was perfect for me because those were my two favorite decades for pop culture.
THROUGH SEPTEMBER 15
17 piece exhibition of large-format, canvas-mounted prints (16x20" and 20x30") are currently on display at WeHo Wash, West Hollywood's hippest and most multi-cultural laundromat. Not only do the owners of WeHo Wash work closely with A Million Drops (charity to benefit the homeless), they also supported local art by turning the walls of their laundromat into a gallery space.
Open 6am to midnight seven days a week, WeHo Wash is a wonderful place to visit, do your laundry, or enjoy original art by local artists!
Special prices exclusive to this show: $100 for 16x20" and $150 for 20x30" prints.
I was born in Geneva New York and went to college at Long Island University where I obtained a BA in English Literature and a minor in film-making. While there, I acted in theater, made movies, wrote songs, and took endless pictures...
After college, from the late 1980's to the mid 1990's, I supported myself as a magazine writer/photographer, doing interviews with local people of interest and shooting their portraits for various magazines and newspapers (DAKA, Scene Magazine, etc).
For many years, I specialized in an "Old Hollywood" type of portraiture in a George Hurrell vein. Visually, I was always striving to get out of the present tense and into either an idealized past, or a timeless space where all eras converge and dissolve into one.
From 1991-1995 I sang and wrote the music for Koo-Koo Boy, a 4-piece, power-pop ensemble that released 3 albums, played hundreds of shows in the central NY area, and charted on college radio stations like WITR, WBER and WCMF with songs like "Vampire Girls" and "I'm a Monster". Koo-Koo Boy even appeared on regional network television (Brother Wease's Live Circus, 1992). In 2017, City of Quality Records re-released Koo-Koo Boy's debut album (1991's Every Freak For Himself ) on vinyl.
Relocating to LA, I wrote and directed my first feature film, Murderess, an all-puppet true-crime film noir about Phoenix's legendary "Trunk Murderess" of 1931. The lead role of Winnie Ruth Judd was voiced by actress Joy Nash --later to star in AMC's Dietland in 2018. Murderess, which won Best Animated Feature in LA's 2008 DIY Film Fest, has shown annually in Phoenix every year since its release in 2007.
Whether I'm taking pictures, writing, singing in a band or making movies, I'm happiest when telling stories and entertaining people. I especially love to use my work to show the viewer something I love, am obsessed with, or passionate about, in a way that hooks them and makes them interested in it too. At the end of the day, it's all just storytelling and connection, beauty and , most importantly, fun.
All-doll, live-action music video I conceived and directed for Squires of the Subterrain!
Photo Montage of my doll photography, set to the music of Best Coast!
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