The Week in Review. Chaos.

Wow.  What a week.  I started getting really sick on Sunday and by Weds. had descended into a bleak underworld of doom and gloom so depressing (as expressed in my column) that world renowned photographers (I had no idea they were even reading my blog) sent me private e-mails asking if I was okay.  I was touched.  And, while the meds my doctor gave me Tues. afternoon have been progressively effective it wasn't quick enough to prevent the staff at VSL from gleefully pushing me out of the way (under the pretense of encouraging me to rest) to make room for that annoyingly gleeful, Charlie Martini to come in and do his mischief, yesterday. 

You know you're really ill if even your collection of original Nick Fury and the Agents of SHIELD comic books doesn't bring you back into balanced contentment.

I know some of you were worried so I though I'd give you an overall update.  I'm back to 92.5% of my usual self and recovering on a geometric trajectory.  I might even make it back to swim practice in the morning, tomorrow.

The world of photography is not imploding.  Everything will be fine.  They just stopped serving the buffets during the shoot.  You know, like in the good old days.  With the iced filled bowls the size of larger beauty dishes, packed high with freshly boiled and peeled jumbo shrimp and the elegant plates with the careful stacks of black caviar grains.  Back when they served Champagne to the cast and crews instead of this cheap Prosecco we're getting now...  But it will all be okay and we'll all adjust.  Just cast that net a little wider and toss it a little harder.

I'm taking tomorrow off from blogging here but sent a scintillating article to Michael Johnston for his blog: the online photographer, that should run tomorrow.  That's providing, of course, that it passes his rigorous editing and high standards.

I know today that it's not the fever so I know I'm really trembling with anticipation as the first copies of our new book:  LED Lighting are being rushed to Amazon.com and other vendors across the United States.  The book has a cover price of $34.95.  The Amazon price is currently so low I don't even want to show it here but it's certainly less than the price of many lunches I've had.  And not really incredible lunches either. 

I can't really think of any big launches or products that hit this week and there's nothing much that I think we all need to run out and buy.  Next week I'm planning to write a bunch of short articles about specific uses of the LED panels and I think that should be fun.  I've used them for all of my assignments so far this year and I'm kinda thinking that I'll persevere through the year just for the hell of it.   I just found out that I paid my lab bill twice last month so now I have enough credit to run through another 20 rolls of MF tri-x.  If you see me out with the Hasselblad and a smile, that's why. 

I'm turning the comments on.  I'm around.  Say hello.  Check in.  Be heard.  


  1. Hello Kirk,

    I'm glad yo are feeling better. Did you remember to get a flu shot this year? If not, make a note for next year. I'm sure it doesn't help but I see Brooks Jensen (LENSWORK) is suffering too. I'll smugly note that I did get a flu shot and so far (knock on wood) I've escaped the galloping crud that is going around.

  2. Hope you will be fully recovered soon, though had not noticed any difference in the outstanding blog! I have the book on order via Amazon UK!

  3. Thanks. Strangely enough writing helps me feel better. And when I'm sick I actually write faster. But in a very un-American gesture I will not strive to get sick just to increase my productivity.

    Thanks for reading.

  4. So, let me get this straight. In five days, sick as a dog, head pounding, fever raging, so miserable you headed to your doctor, you pound out eight juicy and ultra well crafted blogs, thousands and thousands of words, launch a book, and write another (pretty much assumed) amazing blog for a different famous blog site, owned by a friend ????? Amazing.

  5. Glad you're better Kirk. And I dunno if Jim's tip about the flu shot is actually a good one - last time my wife and kid (who didn't have it) were ill for a week, while I (who had the shot some weeks earlier) suffered not as hard, but much much longer - and still had to go to work. I think next time I want a proper flu instead.

    Thanks for still entertaining us here tho you were ill.

  6. Glad you're feeling better! You were getting me quite depressed and I'm not a professional photographer!

    I will expect my copy of your book to arrive soon now, as I ordered it back when first announced. I don't expect to make use of it professionally, but for the price of a good dinner (not including desert or wine!) I know I will not be disappointed! The real cost of the book is the stuff I am now likely to buy with my new found knowledge.

    Off topic: Do you have any comment on the amazing response (getting towards 500 comments) to a rant at DPReview on the cost of professional (in this case wedding) photography?

  7. Good to hear you're all right, Kirk. I'll be ordering your new book pretty soon, and am definitely looking forward to your article for TOP. If anything, that article you wrote about the industry got me thinking about my business plans, and to get them spinning the right way again.

    Here's to more from you.

    PS. That Martini fellow creeps me out. Don't let him near the keyboard again.


  8. Hi Kirk, I am new to your site, but I'm a big fan already:) Glad you are feeling better and have have made your way out of the gloom and doom. Looking forward to reading a lot more of your posts and seeing more of your images. Thanks and enjoy a day off from blogging:)

  9. Hey Kirk,

    Glad to hear you are feeling better.

    No worries on the "doom and gloom" post - I didn't read pessimism into it, just an observation of how things seem to be moving. I think it's fine to be hopeful and also describe the dark reality at the same time.

    Even though there are millions of new photographers offering freebies and trades, the phone is still ringing with people who understand and need quality photos to tell their own business stories. I can tell these folks have had some disappointments lately 'cuz they ask questions like, "...are you SURE you can light a white background?..." :-)

    I can only imagine the results they've gotten when they tried out a bargain shooter.

    I just ordered your LED book, I like the advantages you describe of using continuous lights, so I'm looking forward to reading about your experiences and recommendations.

    Peace and Happy New Year.

    - Ron

  10. Kirk, It's absolutely beautiful outside in Austin right now. Go take a walk with your camera, and you'll be your complete self in just a couple of hours from now.

  11. Thanks Gregg, I just got back. Had lunch with Will at Whole Foods on 6th and Lamar and did the downtown loop. Ran into a bunch of young photographers and I asked them what they were shooting. Big ass smile. They'd been reading a blog and decided to give street shooting a try. I asked them which blog. Oh yeah. VSL.
    I was going to introduce myself but thought that would be too self indulgent. I just smiled and told them it sounded really, really cool......Then I headed home.

    Made my day.

  12. The only good thing of getting a flu is recovering, and the time immediately after that.


    By the way, since I follow you by RSS, I would like to say that your RSS posts always end with "©2010 Kirk Tuck" - it is so now and it was so in 2011.

    Ciao, Marco

  13. Thanks Marco, I wrote all this stuff back then and I just have it spooling on a server....

    Seriously though, I have no idea how to fix the RSS feed but I'll poke around in my laptop with a screwdriver and see what I can do....

  14. Whoa... to be a fly on the wall there would have been cool!

    Glad to hear you're feeling better. I'm busy packing and otherwise getting ready for my upcoming trip to Japan...

  15. Glad to hear you are feeling better! And that the doom and gloom was illness and / or drug induced!

    Greatly looking forward to your upcoming posts re LED usage. I have a thimble full of experience with still life studio illumination and would like to learn a whole lot more. Please encourage your publisher to allow Amazon to at least publish the table of contents (or perhaps you could post it to VSL). I encourage shameless promotion of one's work especially for someone who makes their living through our wonderful world of "photography"!

  16. Kirk, I knew it would help! Welcome back to The Real You.

    I bet at least one of those young photographers knew who you were. Probably made their day, too.

  17. Your post may have been fever induced but
    unfortunately I think there was a lot of truth in it.

  18. Great that you're feeling better!

    Also, congratulations on the book.

    And also, I'll leave this behind, in case there are still some lingering clouds of gloom:

    "I long labored under the depressing idea that the art form I had come to love so much was dying. That we were in the process of writing its obituary. Only to rediscover that it has a power that other media can't match and for that reason alone it earns it's place in the hierarchy of visual art. It is the pervasive nowness of video that gives it power. It's the staying power of still images that gives them their pervasive value. That's not going away and neither are we.", written by Kirk Tuck on 04/04/2011.

    Have fun :)

  19. Phillip. You win. That was the best riposte of the week. Hoisted by my own petard. Silly me. Ah well, it all gave me something to do this week...

  20. that photo just makes me smile from inside out. glad to know yo're doing well:)

  21. Hi Kirk -
    Just wanted to say how much I enjoy your writing, both here and at TOP. Keep up the great work - you inspire me!!

  22. Nothing clever to add, but glad you're better.

    And +1 on the flu shot. I get one every year, they don't bother me at all, and I've been well while folks around me were shivering and sweating. Balance the small cost against the cost of a week of non-productivity.


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