2nd Amendment, I don’t think so.

Hi to All the Ships at Sea,

2nd AmendmentI received an assignment from HBO to do an illustration on hand guns in America. There were approx 357 children killed with handguns the year of the assignment. The photo editor gave me carte blanche to do anything that I wanted to the photo. What you see is a multiple exposure done in the studio with a real 357 magnum with 6 dyna-lites against a clear background. Person holding the gun was silhouetted, then I rewound the film and shot the american flag on top of the silhouette (effectively, there was no exposure there) and by over exposing the corners by 2-3 stops I blew the flag out and just left the hand with the American flag wrapped around the gun. The photo won a few awards when and when people see it today they presume it was done in Photoshop, but it was done in the camera. Entitled 2nd amendment (I never put titles on work).

Two days ago the Senate knocked down the gun bill. Photographic blog, not a political blog…I must watch my language. They should all blank, blank, blank and be totally ashamed of themselves. How much money do they take on the side from gun manufacturers and the NRA? We are taking the greatest country in the history of all mankind and we’re turning it into a third world country. The English couldn’t beat us, the French couldn’t beat us, the Germans couldn’t beat us, the Russians, the Chinese, the Koreans. We’re going to destroy ourselves. anybody who knows me, I love to be happy but with what’s going on today in this world, I’m sorry, we need to get with the program. Go out and make a photograph of your wife…your children…we’ve got enough guns. If you want to shoot something, make a photograph. For the record, I own 6 guns so I am not ANTI-guns. Camera: NikonF 55micro and a grease pencil. Exposure: 1/90th of a second at 22 and 1/90th of a second at 5.6.

All the Best,

Joe D

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The Snake

© Joe DiMaggio

The great author Berry Stainback wanted me to do an illustration for his book on Kenny “The Snake” Stabler, the premiere Oakland Raiders quarterback. To put it mildly, Kenny did not have an alter boy reputation. Let’s put it this way, Kenny may or may not have done things that were illegal, something I would not know anything about. And he may or may not have had more than one drink a day. Again, it’s not for me to say. The art director gave me cuarto blanco to do any illustration I wanted, and this was the cover illustration.

Done with a Nikon f2 55mm micro lens, one overhead wink light, one reflector, and one small electronic flash behind the helmet and bottle. I believe the exposure was 1/90 of a second at f8 ISO 64, but don’t hold me to it. See you next week, Joe D

My First Major Advertising Film Shoot

Approximately 20 years ago I was contracted by Saatchi and Saatchi to do a 20 minute short film on a multi-billion dollar corporation in California.

I had a relatively small budget of $350,000. My first job was to hire a production company. I also hired a co-director. My responsibility was producer and co-director. Everything was in order and three days before the shoot, the director was called out of town on another project. He was replaced by Charles Rudnick. Even though I had no relationship with Charles, but he was the consummate professional. There wasn’t anything he couldn’t do hands on himself. You couldn’t get a better film maker in that particular situation. When the crew was scheduled to go from Los Angeles to San Francisco, the first director wanted to come back and I said “no way Charles is going to complete the film with me” and that’s exactly what we did. Thus a long, prosperous relationship started. Charles and I have a mutual respect for each other and we’ve worked on several projects over the years. Effectively we’ve become interchangeable. Okay, maybe I’m stretching it a little bit. In many ways, he’s drop dead fabulous.

Charles’ wife, Carmen, is the owner/chef of Tommaso’s, one of the finest & well-known Italian restaurants in San Francisco. On any given day, you can walk into Tommaso’s and see John Waters, Nicholas Cage, Francis Ford Coppola, or even my dear friend, Bill Shatner and his lovely wife Liz. I just received a phone call from Charles to tell me that his mother passed away. She was a very special lady. Forgot to mention…Charles’ father was a physicist at UCLA.

Charles sent me the above photo of his parents.

Isadore Rudnick (his dad)