August 30, 2010

woke up today



and fall was in the air.
you know it, that first intake of breath that awakens your faculties because it feels a little
like a shock.
it was delicious..
and it made me revisit last fall.
a trip to colorado.
a stockpile of fuel.

makes me get ready for creative "stocking up". for the trying out of new ideas, ready to become art.

oh oh fall. you're the restart of me.

a friday morning



an hour out, and feeling revitalized.

August 28, 2010

SAVE THE DATE

I'm going to be at the AVENUES STREET FAIR this year! Some friends and I got together and are doing some crafty fun things. I'll have a surprise for people who visit from the blog, so mark the date!

Avenues Street Fair
Sept 11, 2010
9-6pm
7th Ave between I-N streets


just a sample of some of the things we'll be selling

August 26, 2010

URGENT: NEED HELP

I'm submitting my work to a show, and I need to pick a piece. Please give suggestions:

from unmadeup (and if there is another one from that series that you think is better please tell me. You can access those by heading to the proofing site. unmadeup is the showcase gallery)


from some recent client work:


one of the large formats i really love:


just funky fun.

from some digital client work in january:



I'm really leaning towards either the one from unmadeup OR the last one, of the girl in the dress.

August 25, 2010

wednesdays: lotion


Once upon a time there was a little boy who had CRAZY dry skin who HATED to get lotioned up after bathtime. hated.

One day, papa left the lotion down. mama walked in and found said boy in the middle of the photographed action.... and so... she photographed instead of freaked. happy memory marker.

geeky deets: hp5+, pushed one stop, on canon ae-1

August 24, 2010

inspiration

When I ask to photograph someone, it is because I love the way they look.....
What I’m saying is, I want to take you home with me and look at you for the rest of my life.
--Amy Arbus



Read this gem this morning on the good report. Couldn't think of any better way to describe the MATTER project I've been working on. I think I need to get back into the studio and do some more of that.

August 23, 2010

The Takahashis

This image pretty much sums up this session. Arm-pumping fun.


What do you get when you mix a GORGEOUS mama and a asian (best genes ever!) papa? BEAUTIFUL GIRLS. This sessions marks a new point for me. I did some natural light of these clients. I'm very pleased with the image of the dad. VERY. So much that this is the 2nd time its graced the blog.






More images available at the proofing site . However, its password protected, so sorry, folks!

Gallery Available for Jade



Jade is Q.U.I.E.T. Quite the enigma, for sure. Never know where you stand with quiet ones. But I'm guessing, since I made her "jowl" to relax at least she'll have a funny story to tell people about the *crazy* photographer she sat for once.

You can see more images at my proofing site.

August 20, 2010

comissioned: chuck



Photographing Chuck was eerily like photographing my own father. Chuck is incredibly kind, articulate and thought-provoking. Kinda want to talk to him about life regularly. A wizened man, and why not? Look at the RAD salt and pepper hair he's got! ;) He also had fabulous hands. Well-manicured fingers are a sign of a worthwhile individual, I'd say. You can view more of my session with Chuck here.

Realizing you're green with envy? I accept commissions for portraits. You can contact me directly at alisha@alishastamper.com for pricing/availability.

August 19, 2010

August 18, 2010

someone is five months

geeky deets: hp5+ on the faithful canon ae-1, pushed one stop

wednesdays: last fall

August 17, 2010

Thinking about a new project



And looking for models. This is the pose I need. Every body type, skin tone, etc. Please email me at alisha@alishastamper.com

August 15, 2010

who's arrested

Me??!!!!!

HHAHAHAHA. Good thing I am 100% sure my middle initial is NOT 'C'... and that I haven't been in Vegas for four years.

August 14, 2010

Info for Lullabies from my class

Here is the info for the music we used today in the lullaby class. These are the resources I used. I think Jeanne Brady is a GENIUS and she makes wonderful music, not only this lullaby CD but lots and lots more. The other CD is the only modern version I could find of an old LP my mother has. The recording is not as great, but you only need to listen to it a few times to really get the melodies in your head. Sing sing sing to your child! :)

Brite Dreams by Jeanne Brady
$15.95
Limited Supplies

Songs we sang:
Little Baby Birdies
Where Will Baby Fall Asleep Today?
Grandma's Lullaby
All Through the Night
Lullaby Sleepytime Lullaby
Rock a bye Baby (with better lyrics about the seasons)
Little Baby Take Your Time (we didn't sing this one, we just listened and all teared up. It is so beautiful).


Good Night Baby: A Collection of Lullabies
$9.99
Lyrics available on downloadable PDF here

Songs we sang:
I'll Leave My Love
Little Beloved One

Other songs from this collection that are worth learning:
A Lullaby Against Bad Dreams
You've Got Wings
Night Time Comes

Also, you can find some articles here, here and here are some articles about WHY music (and YOU singing it to them as opposed to just listening to a recording) is good for them:


AND as a bonus to ALL the mamas out there, I'm doing a little promo for nursing portraits:



Just you and your baby, we'll get some beautiful images. The discount only applies those who book by Sept. 1st (sessions can take place AFTER that date, but you must reserve your spot by then). Having recently had pictures taken of myself nursing E, I can only tell you how glad I am to have them. It is such a HUGE part of a mom's life, and it can be documented so beautifully!

August 13, 2010

Commissioned: Jade

Just another sneak peek.

Loving Through Lullabies: Because "Rock a Bye Baby" is CREEPY

Hi All!

Tomorrow I'm changing my hat (from photog to mom) and teaching a class on Loving through Lullabies from 12-2pm at the Salt Lake City Main Library. It is part of the Breastfeeding Cafe, a community outreach program of the Utah Breastfeeding Coalition. Their goals are to...

1) Show that breastfeeding is normal
2) Inspire thought and conversation about breastfeeding
3) Encourage relationships among breastfeeding advocates

Regardless of whether you have breastfed or not, it seems within the circles I inhabit that most moms don't know very many lullabies. I know TONS and I really love to sing to and with my children. There is something soothing about it for both parties. The class will be wonderful and I'll have songs for confident singers AND for the one's who aren't so sure.

Also, if you haven't seen my pieces that are up, you can while you're there! ;)

August 12, 2010

August 11, 2010

picked up some film today




and this is what i saw. Must have taken it in the winter. It was before E was born. I LOVE everything about this.

August 10, 2010

A Study on Captured Pain and Its Mercurial Nature

This is going to be an all text post, but I'll tell you now, its the one I've thought the most about, and contains things which have affected me the most as a photographer. Its what I would tell you if you knew me well.

A Question:
Are tears of disappointment beautiful?

The most common answer here is no. Witnessing anguish, pain, fear, disappointment... seeing these things make us uncomfortable. In some ways we find them as a society to be unacceptable in the general forum of human interaction. THIS IS A FALLACY. The entire spectrum of human existence and experience and all its emotional ins and outs is worth witnessing and relishing. I am not advocating the nauseating level of sharing that occurs via twitter and facebook, and sometimes even blogs, but I AM advocating the applause for human strength when it is shown so powerfully through images.

The entire spectrum of emotion, and its fullness of depth (and height), the weight of it, is worth considering. Smiles and met expectations are what we pursue, but what of the failed attempts and unrealized goals? Isn't the search, in itself, worth a look? What about the surrender, and acceptance, of the path that must be taken, even if it wasn't what you had in mind?

These things CAN be beautiful in their own right when we change our paradigm of beauty. Its not the flawless, commercial view of life. LIFE IS BIGGER than the limits imposed by flawless advertising. We've somehow become so divorced from the laudable glory of real life that people seem to baulk at the sharing of REAL LIFE, choosing instead the fluff that is of no consequence. This needs to change.

Let me tell you about three images by photographers I respect and admire:

The first is by Sebastiao Salgado. It is a photograph of a boy in Rwanda, after the massive genocide the country endured. The boy is lit from above, and he is falling onto his knees as his hand is raised. His mouth is open in a cry, a sob, and the reality of these events is translated to the viewer so clearly and undeniably that many people weep with him upon seeing the image. Many more turn away or avoid the photograph all together when it is displayed in galleries of his work. His captured pain is at once, moving (and therefore a kind of beautiful).

The second is by Ami Vitale. It is, again, a portrait of a child. In Kosovo, during the conflict there, she captured the pain of a boy who is holding the framed portrait of his father, who has been killed. Though he is sitting with other children, and many adults are standing around him, his blue, tear-filled eyes strike the viewer. The reality of shared and uninhibited emotion is undeniable.

Both of these images make me weep every time I see them and give me goosebumps to describe. They have never left me.

A third image has entered my mind's eye never to leave. It is by Kiera Haddock. A woman this time, strongly, shows COMPLETE emotion. Its during a birth, one of the most marginalized events in female experience.

We are told-- you should feel no pain. Somehow this has translated into ALL female existence. Women are buttoned up in so very many ways. However, I'm so grateful to this woman for showing it. For letting it be documented. Especially documented by a REAL photographer who could capture it. For showing the pain and the redemption and the strength of being honest in one's emotions, the disappointment and its dissapation in the face of a new life. The strength of the "weaker" sex could not have been more clearly stated.

THE REASON THESE IMAGES ARE MOVING AND UNFORGETTABLE IS THAT THEY WERE CAPTURED COMPLETELY. There are two parts to the equation of trueness and the "darker" side of emotion. Firstly, when you have someone who photographs regularly and well, someone who SEES images instead of merely clicking a shutter, the capturing of a scene is composed, analyzed and removed of excess. When this person chooses the settings on the camera, these compositional elements are kept in mind. The emotion deserves the RESPECT of having it captured well. The composition, lighting, ALL things the photographer considers, are aids to conveying the worth of the emotion and experience.

When pain is captured well, it gives the viewer something to aspire to. We aspire to prevent genocide and war in the name of religion. However, with birth, the aspiration isn't to prevent, but to BECOME. Only respect, admiration, and the recognition of the strength of women are the responses to this last image.

Seek something out. Find your own examples of FULL human existence. They must be found amidst the fodder. Anything of worth must be.

(p.s. i left out the images intentionally. You may email me at alisha@alishastamper.com if you really just can't take not seeing them)

August 7, 2010

the last few days

have been completely breathtaking. I stopped more than once to snap a couple pictures.... even the sadness of only having the "just in case we're in an accident" digital to take 'em couldn't stop me. so lovely.


August 6, 2010

i've got a dilemma

Here's the problem--

I get to pick a print (11x14) from the amazing Leslie of The Good Report. She wants this one of mine. Dang it all for her decisiveness!

So here is why I think for each of these, and you ALL better help me decide, so pick one, ok?

maybe for the bathroom?


W's room for sure.


this one is sentimental. It was the first image that I really loved so much of hers.


Just lovely. Want for my kitchen.
pretty. love the color palette.


just pretty. AND it reminds me to go outside and see this kinda stuff.

oh garlic. how i LOVE thee. How I LOVE that I started cooking with you when I first got married. Makes me remember how far I've come with cooking.... since now I'm sometimes a gourmet-y snob.
beautiful beautiful

perfect for christmas. I think a SWEET photo is just what the doctor ordered for our festivities.

Remember this post from so long ago? That is why I LOVE this picture.
these two are just so breathtaking. I LOVE THEM. THE MOST. but i'm pretty sure unless I have some solid friends backing my choice, T will FREAK OUT when I hang up a portrait of the chicken in the house. Incidentally, I have a few stories in my pocket about about chickens, so it is kinda fitting.

your TURN, peeps! Help a sista out!

August 3, 2010

sometimes i double expose for fun



just another from the commissioned series.

August 2, 2010

MATTER: large format of my sister




Remember awhile back when I said I had my sister and her husband in the studio? You can see the one of just her husband HERE.

These are the two I did of just her. Click on the bottom image to see larger. I focused on the tear in her jeans and I LOVE the quality it gives to the rest of the image, having that part be so sharply in focus.

August 1, 2010

Pieces on Display!


I was asked to participate in creating the art for the 2010 Utah Breastfeeding Coalition's community outreach program. Two of my pieces are there, both 20"x30". It's been awhile since I printed images even close to that large, and I gotta say:

MAN. LARGE FORMAT RULES.

You walk closer to these images and you don't see pixels, you see more DETAIL. See, a large format camera is roughly 150 mp. Yeah, that's not 50. Not 15. 150! Not to mention the beauty that comes from manipulated film and focal planes. Seriously. I love this. I love film. I love photo.

Commissioned: Natalie


This is another portrait from the series of commissions.