Photo by @gerdludwig My good friend Gerd Ludwig is offering a wonderful new flash print for sale. This image goes way back to 1978 when Gerd was selected to do a portrait of famous Austrian artist Friedensreich Hundertwasser. Gerd was in competition with other photographers vying for the commission including the renowned Ernst Haas but Gerd got the job. He spent two weeks with the artist and ended up doing the portrait with his subject immersed in a fire heated bathtub in a grassy outdoor setting, quite a unique portrait approach. This makes for a really humorous, eye catching print. As a young photographer in 1978, I had been asked to submit my portfolio to photograph Hundertwasser in New Zealand for a book project. As I was competing with the legendary Ernst Haas and one of my idols since college, Thomas Höpker, I did not expect to stand a chance – but I was chosen. So I spent a couple of weeks with Hundertwasser at his rugged and remote property on the northeastern tip of New Zealand. Hundertwasser had a wicked kind of humor. To be allowed to take this photograph, I had to promise that I would bathe after him – without changing the water. Which I did – but it was definitely one of the shortest baths I ever took. Friedensreich Regentag Dunkelbunt Hundertwasser (1928–2000) was a world-renowned eccentric artist, architect and early environmentalist. He designed houses with grass roofs, undulating floors, and onion-shaped domes. In his art and architecture he used bright colors and organic forms, was fascinated by spirals, and considered straight lines as ‘immoral and godless’. For this flash sale the photograph is printed on an archival 8.5x11 inch Legacy Platine paper with an actual image size of 6x9 inch. It is signed with an archival marker on the front border. Large limited edition prints of this image are in several private collections. The flash sale ends on December 4th. All prints are shipped via USPS priority mail. Go to link in the bio @gerdludwig to purchase the print”
***FLASH SALE ENDS TONIGHT AT 11:59 PM*** In another week Ani and I will drive up to Lancaster County, Pennsylvania where I will meet again for the first time in almost 54 years, the Amish boy I photographed holding his pet guinea pig in the doorway to his family's barn in the summer of 1964. It was a picture that pretty much started my career as a professional photographer and for National Geographic magazine. My essay on the Amish way of life was published in the August,1965 issue and the Amish boy's portrait was the lead picture. I'm really looking forward to meeting him. His name is David Zook and he is 69 years old. His daughter, who has the lovely name of Charity, recently contacted me about her father being the boy in my picture. And I'm going to also meet the Amish girl who I portrayed with the heads of two huge draft horses. Her first name is Dora and she is the sister of David. It's going to be so nice to make contact with two people who played such major roles in my photographic beginnings.
***Flash Sale Ends 10/29 at 11:59PM. Click link in profile*** Today I received quite a nice surprise. The daughter of an Amish man I photographed when he was just a teenage boy in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania, contacted me, bringing to mind those wonderful days in the summer of 1964 when, as a National Geographic summer photographic intern, I roamed the roads of Amish country trying to document a way of life I knew nothing about but would prove to be an exploration that opened the door to a lifetime of meeting fascinating people and seeing wonderful images as a National Geographic photographer. Unlike my ongoing relationship with the Hutterites in Montana, I have not stayed in touch with the Amish I met so many years ago. I’m not sure why, considering they live much closer to me here in Virginia than do the Hutterites. Maybe it’s the love I have had for Montana that has made the difference. Now I have the opportunity to renew my relationship with the Amish and I intend to go soon to Pennsylvania to do so. The picture of the Amish boy, now a 69 -year-old man, showing me his pet guinea pig, was made after I’d spent hours with his father while he worked his fields with a team of heavy draft horses. I’d seen the farmer from my car as I was driving and I stopped, walked out into the field without a camera and talked to him. The girl in the picture with the huge horses was the boy’s sister. That assignment and those pictures of the Amish in my “Amish Folk,” essay in the August, 1965 issue, truly started my professional career, establishing my status as a National Geographic photographer that would continue for fifty years. National Geographic was my first professional job as a photographer. It’s fair to say that that was unusual--to start at the top--just as it would be now. I suppose it was partly luck; I got a chance and was able to make good of it. And once I got started I loved it and as the years passed I loved it even more. There aren’t too many people who can say they spent a lifetime doing what they loved. I can.
**CLICK LINK IN PROFILE TO PURCHASE** As part of my bi-annual flash sale, I am offering this signed 6” x 9” image on a 9” x 11” paper at $100 for a three week period beginning October 8th and ending on October 28th at 11:59 pm (EST). Lancaster County, Pennsylvania 1964
This gentle portrait of an Amish boy holding his pet guinea pig started my career as a professional photographer and my 50 years as a contributor to National Geographic Magazine. In the spring of 1964, I was blessed with getting a photographic internship at National Geographic in Washington D.C. after showing my portfolio of work to Robert E. Gilka, the legendary director of photography at National Geographic. As my first assignment as an intern, Gilka sent me to Lancaster County, PA to cover a Pennsylvania Dutch festival. "Try to get some pictures of the Amish, if you can," he told me. It seemed the magazine had a finished manuscript about the Amish but had no pictures. He didn't tell he'd earlier sent a staff photographer to Pennsylvania who'd come back with nothing. Although I photographed the festival events my success with the Amish came through driving the country roads, introducing myself to Amish farmers, many of whom turned me down but eventually finding one who allowed me to photograph his family and their way of life. My first assignment which was to have been for a weekend or perhaps a week, lasted through much of the summer and into the fall of 1964. On an overcast afternoon, after photographing an Amish farmer working in his fields I was brought to the barn by his son so he could show me his pet guinea pig. My portrait of the boy and his pet became the lead picture in my essay on the Amish of Lancaster county published in the August, 1965 issue, a story which has been credited as the beginning of a new, more intimate look at people in the National Geographic Magazine.
***CLICK LINK IN PROFILE TO PURCHASE*** As part of my bi-annual flash sale, I am offering this signed print at $100 for a three week period beginning October 8th and ending on October 29th. Lancaster County, Pennsylvania 1964 The portrait of the fragile but seemingly unafraid little girl seen alongside the heads of two enormous draft horses was published in the August, 1964 issue of National Geographic in my essay on the Amish of Lancaster County, Pennsylvania. The child was with her father who was working in his fields. At some point in the afternoon she was standing in the back of a farm wagon, the horses, unhitched, were about to be led to the barn and for a moment they provided the background for her profile. Her blouse appears worn, perhaps a bit dirty from childish play, and its pale blue color seems to echo the softness in the child's light complexion and whispy, blond hair. Photographing the Amish was the beginning of my photographic depiction of several subcultures in my country and elsewhere during the 1960's. My essays on the Amish in 1964, the Basques of France and Spain in 1968, and the Hutterites of Montana in 1969, all dealt with the lives of people living in a culture all their own. This flash sale print is a 6” x 9” image on a 9” x 11” paper. It is an archival ink jet print on archival watercolor paper. It is signed in graphite pencil on the front border. It is a perfect gift for a young aspiring photographer or for anyone who loves photography. At a price of only $100.00 it is a bargain not to pass up. All prints are shipped via USPS priority mail.
Memphis, TN, 1997 // The blues musician, Clarence “Gatemouth” Brown, was performing at the Memphis in May blues festival and had just finished his last song, ending the set at this annual festival consisting of a number of performance tents set up along the Mississippi river’s edge. I had asked the stage crew to please, please, let me work the wings of the stage, the edges of the performance instead of being stuck down below, in front of the stage. I told them I was doing a National Geographic story about the “Blues Highway,” how black blues music had traveled up north with the tremendous African American migration from the early 1900s through the 1950s and 60s. I told them that every picture in a Geographic story has to compete with all the other pictures made and has to be truly special to make the cut. The stage crew gave me permission to move around at will and by the end of Brown’s set I was almost playing in the band! After he finished his last song, Gatemouth turned to take his coat from the chair, looked up, saw me, and gave me that fantastic Gatemouth smile. Of this image I have often said, “I could eat this picture with a spoon.” It’s not my favorite picture, there are far too many to signify just one, but that assignment, to travel the county listening to great music and photographing great African American musicians, rates as perhaps my favorite assignment from my 50 year career. Even more so than all the years I chased out West, hanging out in cow camps in Nevada and Montana, riding with the ranch hands during branding time. Music has been a driving force all my life; I come from a musical family and if I were not a writer and photographer I’d probably be a musician, at least a singer, which I still love to do.
Sicily, 1994 // One of my favorite assignments was to photograph Sicily for @natgeo . I simply loved the outgoing people of that country, the landscape of what is the largest island in the Mediterranean, the toe of Italy and a place invaded and ruled by numerous cultures over the centuries. While driving along the southern coast on our way to the city of Sciacca, I saw a church far atop a hill on the outskirts of town. I ask my assistant, who was driving, to take the road leading to the top of the hill. “Maybe that will provide a fine view of the town,” I told him. We ascended the hill and upon arriving saw people sheltered in the doorway of the church. They all seemed dressed in their very best clothes as strong winds ripped across the hilltop. Standing in the middle of the doorway, framed by two adult men, was this chubby, rose-cheeked young fellow, filled with pride as I took his portrait and the wind pressed hard against his trousers. I eliminated the faces of the two adults flanking the boy so the viewer could concentrate on his youthful and prideful face and stance. I have always kind of imagined that he grew up to migrate to the United States and has become mayor of some town in New Jersey.
Outer Banks, NC, 1992 // My wife @anaallard is from Lima, Peru, and grew up loving the ocean and going to the beach. I am a native Minnesotan and through my travels grew to love the plains and mountains of Montana and Wyoming. I lived a long, long way from the ocean on either side of my country. But in the early years of our marriage - we lived then as now, in Virginia - we managed to rent a house somewhere along he Outer Banks of North Carolina which Ani and our then four-year old son @anthony_allard87 loved. Anthony took great joy wading in the shallow water of the sound although he’d sometimes cry out from the sting of coming up against a jellyfish. Here, framed by our red Isuzu Trooper, my wife and son are smiling, happy with our togetherness at the beach. The colors are rich in the light of Kate afternoon. Those were happy days so well reflected in this portrait, a favorite of mine. #familyphotography#family#outerbanks#northcarolina#beach#filmphotography
Two young women in summer dresses stand beneath a volley ball net setup near a children’s swing set and a flourishing vegetable garden. Their family members were gathered this day to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the ranch’s homesteading in 1910. An American flag flies proudly above them beneath a gorgeous and vast Montana sky. @natgeo@thephotosociety #montana#homestead#ranch#bigsky#leica#flag