Last week I had the pleasure of attending Bob Sacha‘s class, “New Media, New World,” at the Maine Media Workshops. The goal of the class was to produce a one minute multimedia piece. In today’s world, it’s important to understand how to distill a lot of information into a small amount of time and space. Working with my Canon 5D Mark IV, a shotgun microphone and a Zoom audio recorder, I had one day and two meetings with my subject to capture enough audio and video to create an interesting piece. It was fast paced and crazy. My subject was a recovering alcoholic who runs a dog-sledding business in the winter on the central coast of Maine, and here it was, the middle of August. It took 4 days, but I was able to complete my mini-documentary! It’s slightly over one minute, but Bob granted us all a few seconds grace period if it would finish the piece nicely. Below is the result. I’m working on two other projects, and look forward to getting those finished and uploaded. However, I’ll likely be a bit behind schedule as this weekend I am headed to Wales and England for National Geographic Expeditions to teach photography on their ships. Follow me on Instagram for images from the Expedition, or better yet, jump on a plane and join us! Thanks for visiting.
A while back, I had the pleasure of photographing Paul Theroux, the famed travel writer, at his home on the island of Oahu for a story for Smithsonian Magazine. I also collected sound and video for a short piece for the online magazine.
I uploaded it to my Vimeo channel so that you can see this short piece about the art of hula in Hawaii.
Aloha and a hui ho!<p><a href=”https://vimeo.com/178621129″>The Meaning Behind Hula</a> from <a href=”https://vimeo.com/susanseubert”>Susan Seubert</a> on <a href=”https://vimeo.com”>Vimeo</a>.</p>
A while back, I photographed a story about Haleakala, the volcano located on the island of Maui. This is a very popular tourist destination where people go to watch the sun rise or go for a hike in the gorgeous volcanic crater. It is also a sacred place for the native Hawaiian people. I had the good fortune of not only landing the story on the cover of Smithsonian, I also gathered video and audio for a multimedia piece that was subsequently edited by the team at Smithsonian Magazine and published on their web site. There is now an HD version of the final piece to my web site as well as my Vimeo channel. I’m very proud of this piece as it was extremely difficult to produce. I gathered all of the sound in the field. I shot the video footage at the same time I was shooting stills. It was not an easy task, but I was thrilled to have the opportunity to do so for such an amazing publication.
Aloha and mahalo nui loa for visiting my blog!
The current, (May 2012), issue of Smithsonian Magazine features an online multimedia piece about the meaning behind hula and I had a great time shooting the video and audio that comprise the bulk of the piece. I had been assigned to illustrate a story written by Oahu resident and well known author Paul Theroux entitled, “Paul Theroux’s Quest to Define Hawaii.” It was a pleasure to spend an afternoon with Paul, an extremely interesting and generous man. He’s always got a tale to tell and is engaging in conversation. I feel quite lucky to have now worked on two of his stories. His story can be read here, the photo gallery can be seen here, and you can hear his thoughts, along with Kumu Hula Hinaleimoana Wong Kalu in the multimedia piece here.
All of the still images and video were made with Canon 5D Mark II bodies, Canon L series lenses and the audio was captured with a wireless Sennheiser mic system and the Zoom H4n hand-held audio recorder. The stills were processed in Adobe Lightroom and Smithsonian’s in-house video editors compiled the raw material into the finished piece. Go team Smithsonian!
Last night, Oregon Public Broadcasting aired their twice weekly segment on art, called Oregon Art Beat. I was one of the three persons featured on the show. It is so strange to watch myself on tv, as I’m used to being on the other side of the camera. The piece is about the fact that I work both as an editorial photographer and a fine art photographer. I would like to thank OPB, Jule Gilfillan, Tom Shrider and Randy Layton for putting together such a nice piece. I’d also like to thank This Old House for giving OPB permission to photograph us working on location for the March 2012 cover. I am also grateful to Michele Greco for allowing herself to be filmed while we were working – so a big thanks to my favorite stylist/producer. 🙂 Although this feels like more shameless horn-tooting, I really hope that you’ll take a moment to watch the video.
Portland, Oregon is an amazing place to live for so many reasons: the food scene, the forward-thinking development, the great public transportation but for me, our home is the reason we have firmly planted roots here in the Pacific Northwest. Our house backs into the Marquam Green Space which is tangential to Forest Park, the largest in-city park in the United States. If you can figure the maps, it’s possible to walk out our back door and join up with the Pacific Crest Trail. The other great part is that literally steps, (with a little bush-whacking), from our back yard is the newly developed 4-T Trail: Trail, Tram, Trolly, Train. If you are a resident or visitor, this is one great urban hike and a fantastic way to tour the city for under 5 bucks. Last year we began the process of becoming certified for Backyard Habitat, a joint program between the Audubon Society and the Columbia Land trust. This program acts as a guide in transforming your property to a haven for urban flora and fauna. Since our property butts up against the Marquam Green Space, it made sense to get on board. We’ve removed the bulk of invasive plants and re-planted our back yard with native plant species. Now the battle with bindweed, holly and ivy begins! The great part is that we’ve already noticed an increase in the wildlife that visits us, including this Barred Owl who spent a good deal of time on a branch about 5 feet from my office window. You can hear us whispering to the owl as it sits nearby…
Here is how difficult it was to photograph the owl 🙂
In addition to the Barred Owls, we have regular avian visitors. Tonight, while sitting outside having dinner, I noted the following species: Black-Headed Grosbeak, Spotted Towhee, Rufous Hummingbird, Anna’s Hummingbird, Chestnut-backed Chickadee, Black Capped Chickadee, Steller’s Jay, Red-breasted Nuthatch, Lesser Goldfinch, Pine Siskin, Band-tailed Pigeon, House Finch, Red Shafted Northern Flicker, Downy Woodpecker, Song Sparrow, and to top it off, a mother/son pair of Hairy Woodpeckers. Below is our regular summer set-up for dinner. Bon appétit!
The video was shot with a Canon 5D Mark II and a Canon 70-200 f2.8 IS USM L series lens and edited in iMovie. The stills were shot with a Canon 5D Mark II and a Canon 24-105 IS USM L series lens and edited in Adobe’s Lightroom software.
Last week I spent aboard the National Geographic Sea Bird where we traversed Alaska’s Inside Passage. The weather was constantly changing but it rained very little, much to my surprise and delight! I will be writing more about this National Geographic Expedition in the next few days, but I was so excited about this footage that I felt that the blogsphere would be a better place if I could share the joy of watching a pair of Dall’s porpoises bow riding on the last day of our journey. I was preparing for a slideshow presentation when I suddenly heard hoots of excitement coming from the front of the ship. A group of these cetaceans had decided to join us and bow ride for a good deal of time. For a while, there were as many as 5 in front of our ship, much to the delight of everyone on board. People took turns looking over the bow as the animals jumped and played in the water. I was fortunate enough to get some video footage of these amazing marine mammals. Their distinguishing marks were made visible as they turned on their sides and it was wonderful to witness their agility as they frolicked in front of the ship. I hope that the movie below transports you to Southeast Alaska for a moment and affords you a glimpse into what it’s like to be on board with National Geographic.