« A Followup: Office Space | Main | Your Advice Needed »

Friday, 05 April 2013


Astonishing portraits of hard worked hands.

Mike, one that pushed my button was a post at Lenscratch on 4 May by Will Steacy. I went through those images at least 5 times. It really brought home where newspapers are going. Dogs or cats make great subjects because you do have the connection.

Wonderful work! Thanks for sharing this.

Yep, best not to let the cost curve get ahead of the revenue curve. Makes sense for expenses but if you are making a capital investment then you need to consider if the value of the addition will hold up when you sell.

Since this is dedicated work space you may get a tax write off for the space. Your accountant can help make sense of the economics.

The dogs are cute, but the portraits of the men and their living arrangements are fascinating. The detail is so fine you can almost smell the place and the grime on thier skin, hands and faces is palpable. Wonderful work. Thanks Mike!

That site has some really amazing images! Thanks for pointing us to Chris Gibbs.

Sets like that make me want to put my cameras away and try something else...

Anyone interested in dog mushing would do well to check out some of Gary Paulsen's books, notably Winterdance: The Fine Madness of Running the Iditarod, and Woodsong.

The best movie I've seen for awhile is watching this slideshow. There is a lot said in these photos and a lot that is implied and some real emotional character. Thanks for sharing this link.

Tell Lulu she has a twin, called … "Lolo"! No kidding, I've got two dogs and the other one can't be bothered with television. However, if Lolo's on the sofa with me dozing and the TV's on and I say "Perro!" (he barks in Spanish) - he'll immediately look at the screen and start whimpering.
At first he would try to see what was behind the screen too but he's wise to that one now.

Some beautiful shots and a great series but this also illustrates the dangers of Silver Efex Pro. Frankly, in some of these shots the guy looks like he's suffering from some horrible skin disease. Look at the less processed shots and it's clear that his skin doesn't look like this. Chesty is a sweet dog though.

Olli, I'm glad you said that. This is fine work and a great subject, and the Silver Efex "structure" look suits it better than most things I see these days. But I can't help but feel it'd be even better with a bit more restraint.

As someone who is sometimes 'accused' of liking dogs more than people, I went to these to see the dogs but, as others have said, it is some of the portraits of the 'musher' which transfixed me - my wife's comment was "they look like Rembrandt portraits" and that is not too wide of the mark.
Wonderful work which made me hugely envious of Gibbs's talent.
Thank you, Mike, for bringing this to wider notice.

Thanks Mike for showcasing Christopher Gibbs' "Dog Musher" project; great work and story.

I share exactly Olly's thoughts.
Some beautiful pictures for sure but I'm very puzzled by the post-processing.
I didn't take the time to check whether Chris Gibbs is a reporter or not, but it doesn't matter because his work is of a documentary type, not fine art. With a main human subject involved, I think the editing should have been far more respectful of the reality and of the viewer.
I want to be able to understand from every single photo that the gentleman in question has a clean and healthy caucasian complexion.
No unnecessarily fake drama, please!

I like the whole idea, and I love the dogs, but frankly the tonality is obnoxious - the digital at it's worst.

RE: OLLI's comment.

Agreed on the SIlver Efex Pro "look"

I liked some of the images and decided to download Silver Effects Pro and found that exact thing..I'm still learning the program but it does have a particular signature. It made me realize where this style I see in many BW conversions of other folks work, comes from.

I found myself fighting this look as I playing around with the program.

Is there a good resource somewhere for learning the ins and outs of thisSilver Effects Pro?

I immediately thought of W.Eugene Smith when I saw the images of Mr. Gibbs. One of the most interesting B&W printers ever in my opinion. He never let other people's standards get in the way of what he wanted to say in the print. Mr Gibbs does wonderful work whatever software is involved.

For my money or at least my admiration, the Chris Gibbs link is one of your best picks for Random Excellence. Wow, this is great documentary (or for that matter any type) photography. His use of B&W fits the subject matter perfectly. I plan to follow this guy's work into the future.

All of those dogs are as fascinating as looking through a photo album of someone else's wedding. Not very.
There are however a number of really good people shots.

Great photos of working dogs and their pups and people. Of course, I'm a sucker for anything that dignifies the relationships between dogs and humans and dogs and dogs.

Mike, you mentioned how Lulu recognizes dogs on TV. Does your set refresh at 60 fields per second (CRT with cable/dish hookup), or an LCD that refreshes at a minimum of 120 hertz, or a plasma screen with a refresh rate of 600 hertz? The reason I ask is that I've been studying how dogs process visual stimuli. Vision is a dog's tertiary sense-- first is scent, and second is sound. As for vision, Dogs have a higher flicker rate than humans A typcial dog processes 80 frames per second while a normal person processes 60 frames per second. I think exceptional athletes like Ted Williams or Babe Ruth had higher than normal flicker rates. They were able to see the spin of the red stitching on a baseball approaching them at 80+ mph. Flicker rate and motion detection are aspects of canine visual perception that I am beginning to explore. I'm always intrigued when I hear people mention their dogs recognize dogs and cats on TV. My two dogs--a chiweenie and a senior Heinz 57, are oblivious to TV and mirrors. Here are a couple of blog posts that I've written on vision and smell from a dog's POV. http://topdogimaging.net/blog/dog-vision and http://topdogimaging.net/blog/blue-sky-memory-and-dog-senses.

I think there is a very thin line between being an obsessed animal lover and Unabomber

There is some excellent and original work in that "Musher" portfolio, but I think that it would benefit from greater consistency. For instance, the occasional color photograph has the effect of driving off a paved highway onto a muddy road. The same is true of images with different tones. I don't mind the exaggerated textures ("Structure" in SEP's terms), as I think they are appropriate to the subject. This is, after all, an impressionistic body of work.

@Olli: "Frankly, in some of these shots the guy looks like he's suffering from some horrible skin disease."

He's out in the boonies of Alaska. His hands (and face) in some shots are quite dirty (compared to average Western standards) and messing with the contrast in Silver Efex makes it even more so.

You can see that in some of the less heavily process photos.

The comments to this entry are closed.



Blog powered by Typepad
Member since 06/2007