Posted on April 10, 2013
Stepping into Hartford Denim Company‘s workshop felt like taking a step back in time. Vintage Singer sewing machines everywhere I looked, lots of thread and of course stacks of denim. The owners: Dave Marcoux, Marshall Deming & Luke Davis are driven by old-world craftsmanship, taking great pride in their products and the process. And btw…lifetime repairs are guaranteed!
Posted on April 1, 2013
Growing up we always went to my grandparent’s house in Brooklyn for the holidays. Easter was always one of my favorites for one simple reason, my Aunt Netti’s Easter Eggs. Every year she featured a different theme and would arrange dozens of her egg creations on display. I was and still am fascinated by them. I recently spent some time with my Aunt at her home in Leonia, NJ and photographed all the eggs that she has, although sadly she does not have all of them. As a child, the best thing about her egg creations was that I’d get to choose and keep one, now what also interests me about them is hearing the stories behind them, like how some themes were inspired by her travels to Spain and China and how she would find all the small parts for them. These planes were made in 1980 while she worked for TWA airlines, the engines are electrical wire connectors.
Posted on March 5, 2013
Posted on February 14, 2013
I’ve always been drawn to classic portraits of actresses of the 1930′s and 40′s made by the great Hollywood photographers like George Hurrell. Fatima was looking to do some head-shots and this is definitely one of my favorites from her session. Amazing hair & makeup done beautifully by Amanda Russell. We did a few funky ones as well which I’ll share later on…
Posted on January 30, 2013
Well, I’m just playing with movie titles a bit but I do like the sound of it…One of my favorite things to do in my spare-time is going to Trinity College’s movie theater Cinestudio here in Hartford, CT. Having studied cinema in college, there are classic movies I’ve seen before but rarely on the big screen. Seeing Casablanca on a big screen is of course a totally different experience as seeing it on a TV, no matter how big a screen you have. Last year, I saw two films that I’m amazed I never saw before. Both are from French directors that were key figures in the poetic realism movement. First, Children of Paradise. Marcel Carné’s classic film has been touted as the French answer to Gone With The Wind. The film has been restored from the decaying original negative to ultra high-definition 4K Digital. Called the greatest of all French movies, the story is equally as interesting as the production itself, which was filmed in Paris during the German occupation of France during World War II. The story revolves around a beautiful and charismatic courtesan, Garance and the four men who love her. The costumes, the sets, the acting, everything about this film draws you in and holds your interest. The writing is poetic, the characters are unforgettable. It speaks volumes about love, desire and self-truth and the ways in which those emotions are honestly expressed and dealt with. The cinematography, and here I really mean every frame,is beautiful! Okay, I guess I like the movie..a lot.
The second film is Jean Renoir’s Grand Illusion. And this time, the thought kept crossing my mind while watching the movie… “I can’t believe I’ve never seen this film before!” Grand Illusion is considered one of the best films ever made and it’s certainly one of my top five. The story follows French aviators who are shot down, captured, and plot a dangerous escape while being held in a World War I German prison camp. Although the story is captivating and it’s commentary on class, race and war strikingly poignant, for me the draw is the depth of the characters and their dialogue, which effortlessly presents us with the notion of our universal humanity which transcends national and racial boundaries. “Grand Illusion is a story about human relationships. I am confident that such a question is so important today that if we don’t solve it, we will just have to say ‘goodbye’ to our beautiful world.” Jean Renoir.
Posted on January 11, 2013
I’m not much for lists beyond the “to do” list that helps add some sense to my days, just thought I’d share some things from the past year that inspired me, made me think, laugh etc… throughout the next few weeks. All my following posts will only update to my blog at http://lourussophotography.wordpress.com and Facebook Photography Page at https://www.facebook.com/LouRussoScenes so follow or like!
First off, James Nares STREET at The Wadsworth Atheneum. STREET is an unscripted 61 minute high-definition video filmed on the streets of Manhattan that is simply amazing to watch. Shot using a camera normally intended to be stationary while shooting fast-moving objects (Phantom Flex) the camera was mounted on the back of an SUV while it roamed the city streets. When played back in super slow motion, every facial expression and movement of the people on the street becomes, well, beautiful. One of my favorite pastimes has always been people watching, STREET brings it to an entirely different level. The typical intensity and determination of the city street-walker is slowed down and presented as mellifluous dream-like movements. While some slowly move, others are motionless, frozen in time while on a cell phone or waiting to cross the street. The normally unseen flicker of fluorescent lights seem to strum the guitar played by Sonic Youth’s Thurston Moore, an original piece which was composed for the video. A man stands on a street corner and with eyes closed, rubs his forehead with his hand. What’s his story? Money problems? Health? And then you realize that this image you’re staring at is most likely just a second in time, just some guy who blinked while rubbing his forehead. And that’s what interests me. Taking an everyday action or idea and presenting it in a way that strips it of its reality and redefines it. The hour-long video is actually just under three minutes of footage. You have to check it out! Here is a link to two short clips. http://www.thewadsworth.org/street/
Posted on November 23, 2012
“Are you with the news?” a young man asked me as I took photos of the volunteers in action. “No, I’m from Staten Island and I want to document what’s going on here and share it on my blog.” “Good, because It’s becoming old news, and when it makes the paper I think people are wrapping fish in it,” he told me, referring to what he views as a decline in news coverage and apparent lack of interest by those not directly affected by the devastation caused by Hurricane Sandy. Last Saturday, November 17th, almost three weeks since the storm made landfall here on Staten Island and here in Midland Beach, it is hard to turn your head in any direction without seeing something that makes you take a deep breath. I think back to all the times I have driven down Midland Avenue as a teenager, making my way to the beach at night to meetup with friends and hangout usually until the cops would come and make us leave. A woman has a massage chair setup with a sign attached to it that reads “Spa Sandy”. I watch as she approaches a volunteer and asks them “Would you like a quick massage?” They smile and politely decline. “Come on, five minutes!” She says, in a mom-like fashion. The volunteer agrees to it but has to finish a task first. “Is it tough getting people to relax for a moment?” I ask her. “They just keep going and they don’t realize that they haven’t had a break.” She tells me how important it is to feel the touch of another caring person and I realize that just as I can look in any direction and see devastation caused by the hurricane, I also see people everywhere helping each other. Volunteers delivering and dispersing meals, people sorting piles of clothing, handing out cleaning supplies, helping in any way that they can. Perhaps news coverage of the relief efforts and rebuilding is tapering off, but since the hurricane hit I have been so inspired to see just how many groups have formed utilizing social media to organize and communicate their plans and needs. Every person I spoke with that day gave me the impression that there was no place they’d rather be but right there amongst all the other people doing whatever they could to lend a hand to those in need in the community.