Welcome to Stage Left Photography.
With over 20 years of experience we have the skills and the equipment to tackle difficult lighting and locations.
Stage Left Photography is your source for theatrical
photography. We specialize in low light, non flash photography. Stage Left Photography can also provide fine art prints for
sale and travel photography images for license. Please browse the images on the site. The galleries will be updated on a regular
basis so check back soon!
Monday, May 20, 2013
The death of the music and the album as we know it
11:35 am edt
As I am writing this I am
listening to The Who’s “Quadrophenia” start to finish. A few tracks in I realized there there will never
be an album like this made again. No Wall, Tommy, or 2112 either. There is a certain beauty in listening to an entire album
with a musical theme, something comforting. In these days of iTunes and American Idol, if someone did make a great album who
would buy it? There is an entire generation that has no idea that music exists outside a playlist and that is very sad. I
can’t tell you how many people I see on the subway sharing headphones and listening to only one channel of a stereo
mix. I don’t know if they are so clueless that they don’t know what they are missing, or the music is that bad
and they aren’t really missing anything.
I’ve been in the industry a long time now, I’ve seen
a lot of changes, I’ve always tried to be optimistic about the future of music. The realization that the album is dead
may be more that I can take. There are still great musicians out there, I work with a lot of them, there is still great music
being made, its just getting harder and harder to find it.
Sunday, November 18, 2012
Indy Car and F1
11:37 am est
Today marks the first Formula
One race in the US in several years, wait you didn’t know that? Its no surprise as F1 is virtually unknown and unpublicized
in the states. Even a casual race fan frequently confuses Indy Car and F1 here. I’m not going to go into a point by
point comparison to explain the differences, but I will just touch on the highlights and point out the single biggest difference.
F1 is a truly global sport with drivers and teams from all over the map. Indy is a uniquely American product,
there are plenty of foreign drivers (many formerly in F1) but the teams and sponsors are american. Indy runs a mix of ovals
and street courses where F1 runs exclusively road courses. The cars and engines are quite different as well. Indy everything
is spec and all teams run virtually the same thing, in F1 each team designs their own car.
it for the basics, there are a lot more subtle differences but in a nutshell that touches on the main points. The best way
for americans to think of it is like football (soccer here) its a sport the world watches and americans just don’t understand.
The biggest difference is something most people don’t even think about when comparing the two. The biggest
difference between Indy and F1 is one man. Yup, one person Bernie Ecclestone. Love him or hate him (and I lean toward the
latter) he is the man responsible for F1’s popularity on the world stage. Where Indy has a board of directors with political
infighting, a revolving door of CEOs and the constant battle for control between team owners and the board, F1 has Bernie.
Indy uses so much energy to fight amongst themselves its hard to see them ever retaining their former glory, F1 has Bernie.
Many people disagree with his decisions and opinions, but he rules with an iron fist and in the end, that is actually a good
Will Bernie be able to crack the elusive US market? Will F1 gain in popularity here? Only
time will tell, but as much as I don’t like him, I’m not betting agains him.
Friday, November 16, 2012
The power company’s dirty little secret
2:01 pm est
As you may or may not know,
we had a little storm here in New Jersey a few weeks ago. It was apparently the second most powerful storm to make landfall
in the US. Needless to say there was massive amounts of damage done, much more than you probably saw on the news. Understandably
this caused wide spread power outages. In the face of these outages the power company’s efforts to restore power were
admirable . Its after they restored power that this blog will address. I’ve been on my local fire department for 25
years, I’ve handled my share of emergencies and worked closely with the power company in the past, so I have a little
insight into how they operate. If you call during what they deem an “emergency” or storm the first question they
will ask is “Is it on fire” that gets a response, the second question is “do you have power” Its the
answer to that question that causes the problems and exposes the power company’s true priorities. The only number ever
published in the press, the only number the politicians look at, it the number of people without power.
I am not going into how long I didn’t have power, that is not an issue, I will start with the day power
was restored. Understandably @JCP_L employed local contractors to assist in restoring power to peoples homes. In my case it
was Allan Briteway Electrical Contractors, Inc. from Whippany.In talking to them, they are pressured by @JCP_L to complete
the hookups as quickly as possible, corner cutting is encouraged. Remember the only thing that counts to them is “do
you have power‘
Well it turns out that the crew that hooked up my house and my neighbors
did a sloppy job and caused further issues. How did I find out about this you may ask? Four days AFTER my power was “restored”
I hear two guys shouting and arguing on my front lawn. Guess who they were? A @JCP_L crew my neighbor had called to
correct a problem they discovered. To say the crew was unprofessional was an understatement to say they were violent and abusive
would be more accurate. At no time did they address me or contact me that the lights would be going out again. They were to
busy screaming at each other. What was the problem? Was it addressed? I have no idea at all, again all the @JCP_L line crew
was interested in was arguing getting the power back on. Not if it was safe or correct, just on.
is where the fun starts. My wife called @JCP&L to find out what was wrong, if it was fixed and to report the abusive crew.
Thats when nothing happened. Again remember, as long as your lights are on, they do not care what other issues you may have.
I spoke to Darlene and Walt in their West Virginia call center and.......nothing. I finally got the idea to try twitter.
It took me a while to think of it, but eventually I remembered Kevin Smith. A few nasty tweets and I have an almost instant
response from LOCAL employees not the useless West Virginia call center. The potentially dangerous situation on my house was
finally rectified, a week AFTER it was created but I am still waiting on a resolution to the reason why the case didn’t
make it past Darlene and Walt and what is going to happen to the abusive, violent crew.
On a side note when I contacted Allan Briteway Electrical Contractors, Inc., a local company I had a response in 4 minutes
(not 4 days) and a representative at my house in under an hour. His excuse, as mentioned previously is @JCP_L pressures them
to work fast and that they usually come out to “clean things up”
So just remember, if you
have power don’t hold your breath for @JCP_L to get back to you, and their West Virginia call center is a complete waste
of time and breath. Twitter to the rescue!!!
Thursday, September 20, 2012
9:53 am edt
Who are your influences?
Thats a question a friend asked me a few weeks ago. I thought about it and gave the standard answers, a photography teacher
I had, a few well known photographers and a book. Its true all these things have influenced my photography but so has a lot
more. I was reminded of this by watching an old movie the other night. Its a movie that came out in the early 80s about the
same time I was getting serious about photography. I’ve always liked the movie, quoted lines from the movie, but I never
sited it as an influence. My wife had never seen it and it was on one of the many movie channels so we decided to sit down
and watch it. I probably hadn’t seen in in 20 years and I was shocked. From the opening sequence I could see a
reflection of my work. My wife looked at me with that knowing look saying now I know why you like this movie.
Who are your influences? If someone asks me that question again I think my answer is: Everyone and everything
I have ever seen. I’m a photographer, I look at the world a little differently, and apparently I retain a lot more than
I thought I did. Every scene and photograph I have ever experienced is an influence on the work I currently do.
Monday, September 10, 2012
Customer Service, Customer Appreciation, and Social Media
1:28 pm edt
I know its been a while since my last blog post, it seems life has a habit of getting in the way. The good news is, I have
several new posts lined up, so there shouldn’t be a big gap again.
I know you are looking at the
title and wondering what the heck I am going to talk about, this has nothing to do with my other posts. Well it doesn’t
and it does. If there is one thing I love as much as photography its Formula One racing. Truth be told my ultimate dream job
would be photographing F1. Its not easy being an F1 fan in the United States, it a primarily European series, almost
unheard of here. Up until this year the only F1 race in North America was in Montreal Canada. I attend this race regularly,
but this year due to various circumstances was unable to attend. In a weird twist of fate the Formula One Teams
Association (FOTA) (@ollyfota) had an event in NYC that I was able to attend. Several of the teams and their drivers
were featured in this question and answer session. A side note, in F1 there are top teams that are expected to win races,
mid field teams that score points and the “new” teams that aren’t really in contention for anything but
bragging rights amongst themselves. One of these “other” teams that participated was the Marussia F1 team, To
me they were the most impressive of the teams there. They may be small, they may have no chance at a victory at the moment,
but they work just as hard as the other teams, and, most importantly understand the need for fan (customer) interaction.
They have a very active twitter feed (@Marussia_F1Team) and post a lot of info and photos on their facebook page. I
have been a F1 fan for over 25 years and attended dozens of races, but never had the chance to interact with a team in that
way before. I admit I was initially skeptical and maybe looked down on the smaller teams, but after this event I came away
impressed with their entire organization and huge fan. They are currently running a contest to allow one of their fans to
join the team at an upcoming race to be their twitter corespondent for the weekend.
go to show just how much customer service and social media can enhance a brand or business. It doesn’t matter how small
your business is, in todays world social media is here to stay. Customer service is always important and going that extra
mile can really go a long way in gaining fans (clients)
Just one last note, during the event I was fortunate
enough to meet their test driver Maria de Villota. She later suffered a horrible accident in testing and I want to wish her
all the bestl. Here is a link to a photo of Maria signing an autograph for me.
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Please note that each photograph has been registered
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All images copyright Stage Left Photography 2000-2010