Tocăniţă, plum brandy and good bye…

Cosmin Motei, a friend of Calin’s from Romania, came to Columbia a few weeks ago to shoot this year’s Missouri Photo Workshop. We had a terrific time with him and I can’t wait to go and see him in Bucharest. On his last day, he and Calin invited a couple of people over for a traditional Romanian dish called Tocăniţă (pronounced Toh-ka-NI-tsa), an incredibly tasty and filling stew sort of food. I was a little sick that night, so I couldn’t stay as long as I would have wanted, but it was great seeing Cosmin before he left and sharing a delicious meal with all of them.

Note: There are no pictures of the food as we were all too busy eating it…


Note the enamored look with which the Bavarian expat spots his beloved Weißbier…
Photograph by Patrick Fallon


And enter Vivian and Michelle!


The usual playing around with the camera, photographing in mirrors and stuff. Photographers are terrible nerds…


I just love this picture. Calin fires Cosmin up for an interview about his experience in the States that he was going to give to a Journalism student from New Zealand.


And then of course we had to watch Benny Lava, the best Indian Dance Video ever…

October 7, 2009

MPW.61

Originally, I was planning to shoot a small documentary on this year’s Missouri Photo Workshop in Festus and Crystal City, Mo., but that turned out to be a very ambitious goal. As the webmaster of the MPW website, I spent most of my time at MPW behind my computer in an air-conditioned conference room of the Holiday Inn Express, sustaining myself with soda, M&Ms and Swedish Fish (thanks, Carol Fisher!), preparing dozens of html-templates for the launch of the website after the end of the workshop. However, I did manage to get a few shots at the beginning of the workshop.


Driving past the workshop photographers’ hotel. According to the barber in Festus (or, for that matter, one of the barbers’ in Festus – namely the one who made me look like Mr. Spock), obviously the scene of a grisly mass murder some years ago. Well, at least this year, we did not hear of any irregularities there.


Calin, together with Michelle Peltier this year’s Master of the Universe (a.k.a. Student Workshop Coordinator), pretends to be working on his laptop after setting up the workshop venue Saturday night.


When I got closer, he quickly switched to another application so that I would not notice that he was actually playing some funny browser game.


Believe it or not, but even a David Kennedy has physical limits…


David Rees, center right, discusses his upcoming yodel performance with the multimedia team.


In a detailed presentation of what to expect, the workshop participants are being prepared for the upcoming week.


Faculty presentations…


Kim Komenich, a veteran of countless MPWs (faculty as well as shooter) listens to the faculty presentations.


The almighty workshop masters at their control center.


Tweeting, blogging, taking notes for the Rangefinder, classwork. Pick any of the above and you probably know what Erin Schwartz is doing here.


Calin on the edge…


David Kennedy (a.k.a. DK) left the printers alone for a while to listen in on the faculty presentations.


Jessie King, one of last year’s student workshop coordinators, probably thinking about how happy she is that she actually gets to sleep during this year’s workshop.


Larry Dailey gave a terrific presentation about compassion fatigue, play and innovation.


Liz Lance, left, during her research on healthy food at MPW…


Finally, after a long day, the hungry pack stormed a nearby Mexican restaurant to kill their entire beer and food supplies.


Calin was particularly happy when he found out that he could smoke inside the restaurant rather than having to stand outside.


And then Seth Putnam lit up his classy pipe…

October 5, 2009

I don’t belong in heaven, re-edit

I’ve done a re-edit of the story on hospice care, cutting out about half a minute and making it a little more to the point (at least I think that’s what I did…). Please let me know if you think it works better this way!

1 Comment October 1, 2009

Booking it to St. James

Josh Bickel, a fellow grad student at the Missouri School of Journalism edited a book with the images of last year’s Missouri Photo Workshop for his professional project. Last weekend, the big day finally arrived: Coinciding with the St. James’ 76th annual Grape and Fall Festival, the book was finally published.

So, together with Rita Reed, who is a native of St. James, Josh, Calin Ilea and David Kennedy, we headed down to St. James on Friday to build a float and participate in the Fall Festival parade. Thanks to the meticulous planning and preparation by Josh, Rita, Calin and David, the float was built within a couple of hours and it looked amazing. Obviously, the jury thought the same and awarded us the First Place in the Organization/Club entry category…

Calin and Josh prepare the frame for the huge book that goes on top of the float.

Calin proudly presents his Mickey Mouse sweater.

Josh tries out the M8 – good try, but bad subject…
Photograph by Josh Bickel

It just doesn’t get better…
Photograph by Josh Bickel

Josh is warming up for his role during the parade. With the motto of the parade being “Pedal to the Medal,” he’s going to “pull” the float on Rita’s old bike – wearing Spandex!

Unwinding in the motel room after a day’s work is done.

Josh attempts a self-portrait in the motel mirror.
Photograph by Josh Bickel

Our float looked really, really great – except for Josh in Spandex.

The float gets the finishing touches before the judges arrive.

I don’t know what Phoebe is doing here…

Receiving the first price for our float really made Rita’s day.

Josh tries to gather momentum – once the float was moving, his job became a lot easier.

The only thing I remember from shooting this picture (and the next) was that all of a sudden I was surrounded by photographers who photographed me – seriously, have you never lied down on the ground to take a picture?!?

Even you, Calin!

Notice the camera being held up in the air in the background. This must have been the most-photographed parade/float in human history. At least in St. James.

I don’t know whether it’s the physical exhaustion or the embarassment of knowing that the whole world will see him in Spandex that causes this look on Josh’s face.

Of course, the book in question rode along on the float.

We had local support for throwing candies and waving to the crowd.

Hundreds of thousands of people attended the parade to see our float. They came in from as far as Alaska and Hawaii.

David Kennedy has a patriotic fit.

After the parade, Josh sat until the early morning hours and signed copies of the book for the thousands of people who lined up for miles and miles to get hold of a copy.

September 13, 2009

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