3.01.2011

Hanging out with really good photographers is cool.


Living in Austin as a photographer is a bit like living in Beverly Hills for film buffs.  I stumble into my local Starbucks and there's Dan Winters.  Head out for BBQ and run into Wyatt McSpadden.  Drop into the neighborhood library and there's Michael O'Brien.  Every once in a while there's an Arthur Meyerson sighting and, once in a blue moon, lunch with Elliott Erwitt at El Azteca....

So I didn't exactly faint when Will van Overbeek called on Monday to ask if I'd take his photo for a project he was working on.  I love taking photographs of other photographers.  They seem to know how they're going to look best or, at least they know what they want the photo to say.

I grabbed a Canon 5d2, slapped the new Zeiss 85mm 1.4 on the front and got to work.  I used a giant Fotodiox 70 inch octabank on an Elincrom Ranger RX AS head and pack system, nice and close.  Will was happy and I was happier.  I had visions of my camera falling apart in my hands or the front element falling off the lens and I was trying so hard to be "professional."



Will was going to take me some place really snazzy, and probably healthy, for lunch but that particular food trailer was closed so we headed over to ArtZ  RibHouse instead.  The special on Monday is "Country Style" Pork Ribs.  We'll take two plates.

It's fun to photograph the very people you look up to in  your business.  Hell, everyone needs a role model.  Might as well be someone who loves good BBQ.

(Confession:  As good as Artz is Will actually made me a few racks of ribs during the last of the cold snaps in Feb.  If he weren't busy working for cool magazines he would have made one heck of a BBQ chef.)

Bonus: Restaurant Review: Today, Belinda and I had lunch downtown at a place called "Maria Maria" and the buzz is that it's owned by Carlos Santana  (Yes, that Carlos Santana).  The chicken flautas were the best I've ever had and the mango and spinach salad was just right.  Big place, high ceilings, tables far apart.  Loved it.  

Being an Austin Texas Photographer can be pretty sweet.  Who's coming to SXSW?

13 comments:

Trudy said...

I didn't know Austin was so "happening." I've only been to Texas to change flights to Cali and once for a visit to Houston.

Great portrait above. Awesome work, as usual. I really enjoy your blog, images and writing alike.

kirk tuck said...

I think there are more photographers in Austin than there are lawyers, Trudy. And that's saying something....

Craig said...

Considering that it's the state capital, more photographers than lawyers is pretty impressive. Tempts me to move there! Actually, I've heard many times that Austin is very cool, and also that it isn't really part of Texas at all.

TomboCheck said...

Being an outsider whose been poking around Austin for the last three weeks - it seems like this town is filled with artists of all types. Almost every day I see other shooters (I wouldn't know a famous one from any other), but everybody seems to enjoy photography around here. I've yet to get a snarky glance walking around with my cam, it's a nice change of pace! :) Cheers on a great blog, I've been reading you for a while, but now I get to see a slice of your town.

Bold Photography said...

Kirk - re: SxSW - I rarely go. Yes, it's a ton of fun - if you're single or have older or no kids... but with a 4 yr old, it's not much fun. I get periodic offers to photograph in exchange for wrist bands... but the terms and conditions of those deals are usually so draconian that I pass.

That said - I'll modify your sentiment - being in Austin is pretty sweet - the fact that there are so many cool people to hang out with is icing on the ribs...

Anonymous said...

Too bad it's so expensive to live in Austin or I'd be there in a heartbeat. Center of the Universe? No. Really cool place to live and hang out? You bet.

Dean Forbes said...

Come to Seattle and we'll surround you with great photographers, including myself, and we'll do our best to make you feel like one of the gang :-)

Michael Ferron said...

Two more for the Austin list Kirk. Travel/documentary photographer Joe Englander and fine art photographer Polly Chandler. Both are well known and have been featured in some of the better B&W publications.

Dave Jenkins said...

Totally inane question from an incurable gearhead, but did you happen to notice which lens is on the 5DII van Overbeek is holding?

kirk tuck said...

Hi Dave,

It's the same lens he shoots most of his stuff with, the Canon 28-105mm.

Yes. The inexpensive one.

Dave Jenkins said...

What a joke on all the people who think you can't make a worthwhile photograph without an L lens on your camera! I've owned two of the 28-105s, but for some reason, when I switched to digital I found myself preferring the 24-85. I've nearly worn out the second one of those.

Patrick Murphy-Racey, a long-time Sports Illustrated shooter who also does a lot of corporate work, probably owns more L glass than most of us have ever seen in on place. Yet, he told me once that the 24-85 was his real money lens.

kirk tuck said...

Dave, I was just in Will's studio earlier this afternoon and he was showing me his selection of images for a National Geographic Traveler assignment. Almost all done with that lens and they were great. Even at 100% they were sharp and detailed. It's not the lens.......... but we both know that.

Jessica said...

Great portrait. No wonder he was happy with it. And I'm not sure when, but I will make it to Austin again sometime. You make it sound so great.