Lucha Va Voom Halloween show

Masked wrestlers in a spectacle of mayhem and high-flying antics! See my photos here.

Some of my images from the Lucha Va Voom Halloween show last week. Masked wrestlers perform in a spectacle of mayhem and high flying antics. To see more images and purchase a print, click here.

all images owned and copyrighted by Gatesman Photography. For licensing or prints go here.

Smoke Free

After more than 10 years of living life as a reformed smoker, I wanted to look into what made it such a draw for me. I wanted to explore what made me love it so that in the face of a true health risk I would continue to do it. Smoke Free is a double entendre shot entirely at 240 frames per second, and includes portraits of the people I interviewed.

I just love how relaxing and hypnotic it is…

Continue reading “Smoke Free”

Winter Street Photography – Chicago

I went for a walk around a very chilly Chicago with a couple of young photographers today, my niece Taylor and her friend Casey, to capture some street photography. We started in Chinatown, then went to the Water Tower, Lincoln Park, and ended up at Millennium Park. Here are some of the images I made…

And a shot of the young photographers…

Casey and Taylor
Casey and Taylor

Girl Watching the Sunset

Girl Watching Sunset
Girl Watching Sunset

There were lots of clouds in the sky all day today, which is pretty unusual for Southern California, and I just knew a great sunset was going to come out of it. So I went down to the beach by my house and waited. And I noticed this girl doing the same thing. Contemplative, serene, peaceful.

Drops 2

A continuation of my previous post where I attempted to collide water droplets and freeze them in time by use of a very fast burst of light. This time I added a digital component to help get the timing more accurate and controllable. Click on the images to view them larger, or if you would like a print, or license, hit this button [button url=”″ style=”black” size=”small”] Get a Print [/button]

One of the things I’ve come to like about these images is that they are kind of like cloud watching, in that I start to see different things in the shapes and patterns they make. But then, I’ve been looking at quite a lot of these recently and it may just be the creeping madness that comes from prolonged solitary work. I guess it’s time to hit the bar…

Water Drops

I’ve always been drawn to water. I’m a Pisces so I guess I should say “naturally”. But this is the first time I’ve attempted to photograph it so deliberately. (click on the images to see them larger)

Creating these images required a contraption, timing and patience. Only one of those things, the contraption, do I have 100 percent tolerance for. I love making a contraption: planning it out, finding material, building it. Getting my hands dirty has always been part of my DNA. As for patience, let’s just say as I’ve gotten older, I’ve gotten better with it, though some might still say it is not my strongest virtue. Fair enough. And timing, well, I’ve always had an inconsistent relationship with timing.

Enough of the self-reflection: this project had me firing on all cylinders. I loved every bit of this because the outcome can be so incredibly soothing, satisfying and surprising. I can see why people get so hooked on the pursuit of creating water sculptures. I think I will try this again in the near future. I’ll keep you posted.

Free Music Thursdays in Santa Monica

Ballona Creek at night, PLaya Del Rey
Ballona Creek on the way home

I really like riding my bike down to the Santa Monica Pier for free music on Thursdays during the summer months. Last week was the final one for this year and one of my new favorite bands, Best Coast was playing. I brought my camera along for fun and made these images. I know it’s out of order, but the first image above was the last one I took that night. It was a beautiful, still night and the colorful lights from the buildings on the right just looked so perfect, and contrasted so well with the powerful orange glow of the city in the background. Check out the gallery for more great images I made from Venice and Santa Monica. Continue reading “Free Music Thursdays in Santa Monica”

Remembering John Pedone

John Pedone operating the Whole Hog light board
John setting the lights for the Slash video

[dc]H[/dc]is self proclamation “I’m kind of famous at Burning Man”, I’ve learned was accurate as news of his untimely death spread like wildfire through that community. I knew John Pedone as a colleague and fellow technician in the film lighting industry, and for a short time a decade ago, as a room mate. I only recently became aware of his impact on the legendary annual gathering of artists and misfits in the desert, as he proudly showed me photos of the camp he co-founded there years ago. His status at Burning Man became apparent to me posthumously as I began hearing about his motorcycle accident from some of the unlikeliest sources–all attendees at one time or another at the desert festival. That he was well-known amongst a large group of creatives in southern California doesn’t surprise me as he was one of the liveliest people I have known: well-traveled, adventurous, artistic, friendly and energetic. He created colorful light shows for raves and live performances, insanely huge structures for Burning Man, jumped from airplanes and scaled rock walls.

John and I worked together on more than a few projects over the past decade, the last, and probably coolest one being a 360° video for a new album by Gun’s ‘N Roses guitarist, Slash.

John lived life at full speed and last Friday he was remembered by a gathering of friends and family who came to say goodbye in a way that I’m certain he would have truly appreciated.

RIP John Pedone 1971 – 2012

Balancing Sunset with a Foreground Subject, part 1

A technique I have been wanting to try for a long time now has been balancing a beautiful sunset with a good exposure on a person in the foreground. It’s not entirely simple as the subject should not be lit flat like from an on-camera flash, and the proper balance has to be found. This is my first attempt and I did not have the flash set up properly and didn’t have all the equipment I would have wanted because we just happened to be driving by the beach when we saw this sunset and ran out to grab some photos, but I made do and these are the images I came up with. Thanks to my buddy Bret for being such an accommodating victim. I learned a few things just from that brief foray and will refine the technique from here.