Francois Laxalt via The Huffington Post

Francois Laxalt, photographer

Francois Laxalt

Carrying the Message of Peace Through Senbazuru is a short post that I wrote about Parisian photographer Francois Laxalt for The Huffington Post.

I first met Francois in Paris in 2013, and then got a chance to review his portfolio at FotoFest in Houston in 2014.

The images are whimsical and abstract, but the story of Senbazuru is what really fascinated me. Click on the image to read the full story.

Literary Journals and Photography

Some of my favorite Literary Journals use photography on their covers.  I’ll take it one step further: some of my favorite literary journals also feature photographers in their issues. Around the horn on these covers you see photographs by Julie Blackmon, Amy Stein, Jenny Fine, Maggie Taylor, Abelardo Morell and Berenice Abbott––a fine mix of modern and contemporary photography.

At the AWP Writing Conference this past weekend, I visited with many of these journals who had booths at the conference and thanked them for using photography.  They probably thought I was a little crazy for commenting on the covers and not the text inside, but I got to tell you, I sometimes do judge a book by its cover.

literary journal, literary review, photography, photographers

Here’s a list of Literary Journals and Magazines (sorry if I missed any of you).  Submission guidelines for writing, art and photography can be found on their websites:
The Kenyon Review — Twitter = @kenyonreview
Hayden’s Ferry Review — Twitter = @haydensferryrev
Ecotone — Twitter = @EcotoneJournal
Ploughshares — Twitter = @pshares
Creative Non Fiction — Twitter = @cnfonline
Manor House Quarterly — Twitter = @MHQuarterly
The Paris Review — Twitter = @parisreview
Harvard Review — Twitter = @Harvard_Review
Indiana Review — Twitter = @IndianaReview
The Iowa Review — Twitter = @IowaReview
The Georgia Review — Twitter = @GeorgiaReview
The Missouri Review — Twitter = @Missouri_Review
The Southern Review — Twitter = @southern_review
Redivider — Twitter = @redividermag
N+1 — Twitter = @nplusonemag
Gulf Coast Journal — Twitter = @Gulf_Coast
The Virginia Quarterly Review — Twitter = @VQR
Lapham’s Quarterly — Twitter = @LaphamsQuart
Salt Hill Journal — Twitter = @salthilljournal

A Book of Books

If you like books as much as I do, including photography books, then Abelardo Morell’s A Book of Books is a must.  For all of my photography followers, most of you will know who Abe is.  This post is for my newer, book-loving writers and literary types.  Abe was one of my professors at the Massachusetts College of Art and Design when I was an undergrad and a mentor during my graduate studies.

abelardo morell, book

Abelardo Morell, Old Travel Scrapbook: Munich, 2000

Many people approach books for the first time in bookstores, in libraries and in schools.  Books come in all shapes and sizes.

But as Abe points out, these books have “less to do with their rarity or preciousness than with my wanting to find out the stories they have to tell. Making photographs of these imagined narratives is at the heart of my work here.

One of the big pleasures of this project has come from spending a good amount of time looking at, holding, smelling, and reading a terrific number of skinny, fat, tall, pompous, modest, funny, sad, proud, injured, and radiant books. Of course, there are many more out there to be found, by anybody!”

Many moons from now, some artist, somewhere, is going to get a wild idea for a series, quite possibly:  A Book of Kindles.

Dogtown – words on rocks

bill franson, courage, dogtownNo…I’m not referring to the skateboard company based in Venice, California.  If I were writing this post twenty five years ago, it might have been about that.  This Dogtown is located in Gloucester, Massachusetts.

(via wikipedia)
Roger Babson (founder of Babson College) was interested in the history of an abandoned settlement in Gloucester known as Dogtown. To provide charitable assistance to unemployed stonecutters in Gloucester during the Great Depression, Babson commissioned them to carve inspirational inscriptions on approximately two dozen boulders in the area surrounding Dogtown Common. The Babson Boulder Trail exists today as a well-known hiking and mountain-biking trail. The inscriptions are clearly visible. The boulders are scattered, not all are on the trail, and not all of the inscriptions face it, making finding them something of a challenge. Samples of some of the two dozen inscriptions include: “HELP MOTHER”, “SPIRITUAL POWER”, “GET A JOB”, “KEEP OUT OF DEBT”, and “LOYALTY”.

An exhibition of photographs of these boulders by Bill Franson are on display in the private room at Panopticon Gallery in Boston, MA from January 11 – February 25, 2013.