Archive for January, 2010

I watched the sun rise over Paris this morning. And now, at 3:00 pm, the little light that was illuminating the Baltic Sea here on the coast of Sweden is slipping quickly away. It’s been extremely cold and humid here and the trees look like they have been dipped in delicious white chocolate.

Flying into Stockholm I was momentarily transported to the other winter we experienced in the last 6 months, and how that one started. Nikon asked us to create a film to celebrate the launch of their new flagship camera--the D3S--and we so we headed south. Really, really far south. Our friend David Callow has been telling me of the wonders of Tasmania for years. I don’t know why I stayed away so long. We left the Rocks in Sydney well before sunrise and headed out over the Tasman Sea and swoped into Hobart. Fog above, steam below. When the plane dipped out of the clouds and crossed over the edge of the island we were presented with one of the most glorious views I’ve ever been blessed to witness. Laura, never very talkative, sat in a stunned silence....and then allowed that it looked the way she imagined Peter Pan’s Never, Never Land looked when she read it time and again as a child. Thanks Nikon for that. And now for this. It’s midnight in northern Europe, and I am having hot chocolate and sitting with Laura and software wizard Curt Bianchi next to a fire looking at the ice flows in the Baltic Sea.
Stockholm, Sweden

Stockholm, Sweden

Jennifer Herbig, another buddy, who has a company called Triple Scoop Music just checked to say hello and tell me that she was sending me a link with some music she’s prepared for a multi media We are creating images --both moving and still and teaching multi media production. It’s going to go by way too fast.

Bill met Missy through mutual friends in 1983. She played soccer and volleyball and was a student at the University of Miami. He was a young newspaper photographer at the Miami Herald.

A year later Missy was diagnosed with cancer in her right foot. Desmoid fibersarcoma, an extremely rare tumor that flares in the limbs of physically active people, possibly due to repeated bruises to a section of the body. To beat the cancer she would have to have her right leg amputated. Bill called her as soon as he found out the news. He thought she might want to take some pictures before the leg came off. They talked and decided that he would follow her through the entire ordeal. He spent a year following Missy on top of his daily assignments at the Herald. The story was published on Christmas Day in 1984 in the Miami Herald Tropic Magazine. The entire issue was dedicated to his pictures and the story that Steve Sternberg wrote. The story won the Gold Medal in World Press that year. After a second amputation and subsequent radiation, Missy has been cancer free now for 20 years. She has been married for 19 of those years to Todd Billingsley who she met at her church in Miami. They are now living in Rome, Italy, with their three adopted children, Joey, Abbey and Lukas. With the advent of the new technology we can now show Missy's story on multiple platforms to millions of viewers. The piece was shot with the Nikon D3s and put together in Aperture and Final Cut. From our Macbook Pros we could then ship the video to multiple clients via ftp and other means. From our blog to Sports Illustrated. There is no limit to what is possible now. Sports Illustrated posted the Missy story on Monday. Manfrotto was with us in Rome for the shoot and posted a piece on Bill working on the story along with the video. Her husband, Todd Billingsley, is writing a book about her life that is due to hit the shelves this fall. Bill was also Scott Kelby's guest blogger today discussing the Missy story. The power of the internet coupled with the new Nikon cameras now allows us and other photographers to get stories seen. You can be your own publisher with a web site, send your work to possible clients and network without leaving your office. Don't let that lead you to believe that this work is easy. Quite the contrary. Creating multi media productions is a time consuming process, but if you love it is also rewarding. For this story we have to give a special thanks to Manfrotto for making this follow-up project possible and especially our dear friend Marco Tortato.

Every year Bill puts together a book for my family called "On the Road with Laura." The book chronicles our travels with pictures of me in the various places we have worked and visited. This year started off in New Orleans for the Sugar Bowl. New Orleans is a gorgeous city for features. I'm not sure what it is. Maybe it's the colors of the buildings or the shapes of the balconies, but the light in that town is just different.


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