“People only see what they are prepared to see” by Christopher Broughton

There is such a wonderful, insightful, and ingenious quote by Ralph Waldo Emerson that I try to keep firmly rooted in my subconscious when creating photographs. “People only see what they are prepared to see.”  During the summer of 2014 I had the opportunity to take a group of students from Brooks Institute to the Musée du Louvre while we were studying in Paris.  Visiting the Musée du Louvre and seeing the Mona Lisa is one of those opportunities that everyone should have on their bucket list. When we entered the room where the painting is displayed we soon realized that seeing the Mona Lisa was on everyone in the world’s bucket list too.  Some of the students were so turned off by the insanity that they almost bypassed the room entirely.  With a little mental preparation and persuasion we entered the back of the room and very, very slowly made our way towards the painting.broughton_c_monalisa_room

I have always found it fascinating photographing people observing and reacting to art.  I captured quite a few images of this mass pilgrimage procession of art seekers as we made our quest for the front of the room.  Upon finally reaching the railing protecting the Mona Lisa I took my obligatory photo of her and then for a brief moment I listened to my subconscious telling me to turn around. It was as if my inner self intuitively shouted“ turn around”, reminding me to always look beyond what I was expected to see. The split second I turned around and viewed the world from the Mona Lisa’s point of view I knew I was privilege to photograph something so obvious and special that few were prepared to see.

With both hands I raised my Sony Alpha a6000 above my head and with the 10-18mm f/4 zoom set to 10mm I tried to capture the sea of humanity that was descending upon the painting. I was able to fire off a few frames from Mona Lisa’s point of view before being whisked away through the protective railing and out of the room.


From the moment I opened up the file on my computer I knew instantly that the image needed to be converted into a very large warm toned black and white print.  Working in black and white visually allowed for the conveyance of the idea that the people in the room were flowing out of The Wedding Feast at Cana painting by Veronese located at the rear of the room.  I made myself a 24×40 inch print that I put directly above my desk that still makes me remember how my jaw dropped the moment I turned around and witnessed the world from Mona Lisa’s point of view.



Christopher Broughton


  1. Always look behind yourself when you are photographing, your jaw might just drop!


In 2013 I traveled to Southeast Asia for about a month. It was my second time in Southeast Asia. The plan for this trip was to explore a bit more of Thailand, then head to Laos and Vietnam for most of the trip. Laos was probably one of the best Countries I’ve ever been to. I arrived in Luang Prabang and immediately fell for this sleepy little town. One day I decided to take a boat to the Pak Ou Caves north of Luang Prabang. I arranged for the round trip boat ride and went to the river to find my boat. It was an interesting morning. I was shuttled from boat to boat, and finally told that I should stay on the final
boat they put me in. I was confused by the entire process but ultimately decided that these guys must know what they are doing. I was on a boat with about 10 other people, and we were off.

It was beautiful scenery down the river. The boat was a bit uncomfortable and noisy, but I was loving it all. After about an hour I started to get nervous. I thought for sure we should have been to the caves after an hour. No. Then another hour passed and I thought maybe I got on the wrong boat. Started to get more nervous. Then we finally came upon the caves. I knew I was in the right spot because there were a lot of tourists around. I climbed the steep stairs to the lower cave and was immediately surprised by
the hundreds of Buddha’s placed everywhere in this cave. It was really dark, but I managed to get some great photographs. Then I made my way up, what seemed like 200 stairs, to the upper cave. That cave had less Buddha’s in it, but still very impressive. It is an amazing spot, for sure.

I managed to get this photograph in the lower cave. I loved the way the light was coming in and barely illuminating the gold on one eye. I also loved the cobwebs backlit from the sunshine coming in to the edge of the cave. After getting some photos, it was back on the boat for another 2 hour ride back to Luang Prabang. It was a great day in Laos. One of my most memorable experiences from that trip.

Chris Klinge


Four Princesses

four princesses in Amsterda copy


This image feels like it could have been shot in the early 1900’s, but in fact it was taken on my first trip to Amsterdam in the early 2000’s.

We were on our way to a cafe for dinner, when I saw these four little girls in princess dresses walking the same way as us, but on the other side of the street. I had two cameras with me….one was an old Holga (plastic camera, known for soft lenses and light leaks) that was loaded with T-Max 3200 film. The other was my trusty Nikon F3 with color slide film. I immediately pulled the Holga out of my jacket pocket as I noticed that they were crossing the street and would be slightly in front of us. Shooting with the Holga was s double edged sword. On one hand, it was easy as there was very little control over exposure or focus. On the other hand, it was extremely difficult for the exact same reasons.

As they crossed the street, I was able to get one shot as they made their way in front of us. If I’m being totally truthful, I never saw the bicyclist until I had the negative in my hand. He was an exceptionally happy accident that really adds balance. Afterward, I was trying to figure out if I thought I had a decent exposure….but in the end it was too difficult and I just crossed my fingers. I was able to get two exposures of them with my Nikon before they ducked into an ice cream shop for a birthday party. The images are okay, but show none of the energy of this image from the side where you can see them pulling the adult with them in their hurry to get to the pary.

The film was pushed two stops, and then I printed the image using the “lith” process. (http://www.lithprint.com/Lith_Print_Introduction.htm) This adds to the graininess of the image, and also helps give it that “period” feel and warmth. Lith printing is a long and involved process, but gives you something that (I feel) is unobtainable with digital. GASP!!

The final image you see here is a scan of an 8″x8″ print.

Thanx for listening!

Stay Loco – by Rick Amado


This image had been marinating in my head for a while. It started with a weird dream I had; I was at a car show on a huge field of grass, just walking around reveling in the orgy of kandy and metal-flake and next thing you know, the grass erupts in flames. Everyone scrambling to drive their cars off the burning field while I stand there taking photos, immune to the conflagration. It was one of those vivid dreams that you can’t get out of your head. In the following days/weeks/months, I caught myself constantly looking for burned-out locations where I might shoot a car but nothing seemed right, I wanted fire and all I could find was crispy aftermath.
One day, I was talking with my friend Rob McDonald, he had just finished building his ’60 Chevy, “Stay Loco” and we were discussing location possibilities to shoot a magazine feature. I mentioned how cool it would be to get the wagon in front of a grass fire or burning building but short of luck or arson, we’d have to come up with something else. Turned out Rob has a friend who’s a honcho at the Kern County Fire Department. He made a phone call and managed to get us access to their training facility along with a station crew and their equipment for a ‘training session’. They piled some pallets in their concrete burn-building, doused them in diesel and lit them off just as the sun was hitting the horizon.

Rick Amado


Brian and Graci by Drew Meredith

This image comes from a series of images that I have been working on for the past 5 years. The inspiration for the series came from the art work of René Magritte and his painting entitled Son of Man. Living in North Idaho I was inspired by the beautiful scenery that surrounded us every day. I would ride my bike around the area and certain things would stick out to me. If I was by myself riding I would get some crazy ideas and then try to execute them. These times would always lead to some of my best photographs. This shot is was inspired by one of these bike rides where I came upon a man tying to wrangle a few head of cows. I stopped and watched for awhile, it was quite a show he had his two children riding rough-shot on their bmx bicycles riding around the cows mostly driving the dad crazy but really only giving the cows fits. The next day I rode out to their farm and told the man of my idea. Initially he wasn’t quite sure he said he would like to talk to his wife about it. Maybe I’m just a little sketchy looking but it turns out that a friend of mine was a neighbor and she put in a good word for me so he said come out any time.
I enlisted my friend Brian McCarthy to be my model not solely for his good looks and friendly demeanor but mostly because he had a suit, ( a rare commodity in the furthermost reaches of Northern Idaho ). I think this shoot was a new world record time. The owner walked Gracie out Brian sat down and I started to shoot but needed the cow to take a half step forward. Now I don’t know if you have ever worked with a cow before but they are not one for taking direction. However I had no idea that this was a trained cow. The owner put a pile of feed about 6 inches ahead of Gracie and sure as shootin’ she took a half step forward and I got the shot.
It’s one of my favorites in the entire series.
You can see more images in this series, along with Drew’s commercial work at:

Denim Factory in Guatemala


In the early 2000’s, I was a Senior Photographer for Gap Inc., in San Francisco. One of the great things about working for such a large corporation is the opportunity to experience things that you might not otherwise be able to.

Gap was heavily involved with Habitat for Humanity and sponsored a few trips each year for employees. Individuals that had volunteered for local non-profits would be invited along to work on building houses for a week at a time. I was lucky enough to be invited on one of their trips to Guatemala.

As part of the trip, a tour of one of the denim factories that Gap worked with was arranged. I was extremely excited to be able to see one of these factories up close…..but pessimistic about my chances of photographing (based on the horrific stories we have all heard about manufacturing in 3rd world countries). To my surprise, the owner of the factory actually encouraged me to take photos as we were shown around (In the end, I figured out that we, as Gap Employees, probably weren’t going to be shown anything that would remotely look bad).

The factory itself was huge, occupying an entire city block and employing over 10,000 people. As we toured, interesting facts surfaced. Things like – Factories around the world all pay the same – so this Guatemalan factory competed with factories in China, India and other places where wages were rock bottom. This meant that the place that they were really able to make money was on minimizing wasted cloth. The only computers in the entire place were used for laying out patterns on the rolls of fabric, in order to cram as many pairs of jeans as possible onto the denim.

We also asked lots of questions about minimum age requirements for the factory. It was explained to us that they were forbidden to use underage employees, but sometimes it was next to impossible to establish the age of applicants for the jobs. Most people in Guatemala didn’t have birth certificates, so Gap actually had a person at the factory that would travel out to the villages that people were from and question family members and neighbors if there were any questions about the age of an applicant.

As we were touring the facility, I was using two film cameras. One for color, and one for black and white. As I finished a roll in the camera with color film in it, I pushed in the rewind button and attempted to crank the film back into the cassette. To my astonishment, the film wouldn’t budge!!! Something had malfunctioned and the film wasn’t able to be rewound into the cassette, which meant that I couldn’t put a new roll of film into the camera. I was in a slight panic, and couldn’t stop and figure out what might have happened as we were continue walking through the factory and I needed to keep shooting with my other camera (in the end, I ended up losing the entire roll of film).

I kept shooting with my black and white camera, which had T-Max 3200 film in it. Closer examination will reveals huge grain in the image, but back then it was the only way to shoot in the low light conditions of the factory.

The image above shows a pair of jeans being sanded by hand. They are attached to a rubber bladder that is inflated into each leg. I had always assumed that the finishes on a pair of jeans were all done by machine….but they aren’t. Stone washing is exactly what is says – large industrial washers with stones in them are filled with jeans and ran through a cycle. Jeans that look “pre-worn” are actually hand sanded like in the image. “Whiskers” are added the same way. Sandblasted jeans are actually sandblasted. It’s all very labor intensive. And fascinating to photograph.

Thanx for listening.




Rainbow Over Turret Arch – by Mark B. Waldron


I remember creating this image as if it were yesterday, although it wasn’t meant to happen, strange things occur out in the desert. It was March 1995, almost 20 years ago. I was on day 15 of a 20 day  photo trip in the Arches and Canyonlands area, I hand been photographing Arches National Park for the last 3 days and was ready to head home and spend a Day at  Goblin Valley. I waited that night for a sunset at Arches but it never happened, some rain moved in and the clouds never opened up. Checked the map and it looked like I could cut over on Willow flats road on the north side of the park to Hwy 191 (Back then I had my 1991 Isuzu Trooper…… Damm I miss that truck!). By then it was pitch black, I was crawling along this dirt trail when I saw water running across the road and decided I better not try to cross. Ok I thought to myself, just sleep in the back of the trooper and head back in the morning…..and if the light looks good stop at North Arch. I woke up 1 hr before sunrise and drove back to main Arches road and headed over to North Arch. Parked at the lot as dawn started to show. I grabbed my backpack and tripod, back then a Wista metal 4×5 with 5 lenses and 10 4×5 film holders loaded with Velvia, and a heavy ass Bogen tripod. The morning light ight was coming up quick as I climbed through North Arch to the back side. It was shaping up to be sweet, I spotted  a little shelf where I climbed up to and started setting up as fast as I could.

“Holy crap its happening the light going to be  great” I remember telling myself. Turret Arch behind North Arch has started to light up, gotta make quick decisions 135, 90 or 75mm. Decided to go with 90mm to get some foreground in the image. Put the dark cloth over the camera, a little rise on front element, I am talking to my self at this point, “this is freaking coming together” I start to get the shakes, grab the loupe, ok a little tilt and I am all in at f16 , as I am checking focus with loupe I see the rainbow over Turret Arch ” Oh Sh*t” gotta move faster.  Spotmeter on highlights  turn the knob to get correct exposure. I expose 2 sheets of Velvia, then as I insert another film holder and rainbow gone.
Got it!


Location Tent Shoot – by Rick Szczechowski


This image is from a tent shoot at Vasquez rocks. Vasquez Rocks is located in northern Los Angeles County, and has been used in numerous movies and television shows. The prominent rock formation has also been nicknamed “Kirk’s Rock” due to being featured in several Star Trek episodes, each time representing a different planet. The use of the rock as a place to struggle with an enemy was echoed in the film Bill and Ted’s Bogus Journey twice, once replaying the Gorn Star Trek episode on the TV, and again when title characters are murdered by their doubles at the same location.

This was the last shot of an extremely long day. It had started sprinkling when we were setting up but the Art Director wanted to push on and finish the shot. By the time the tent was set up, the shot was propped, and we were ready to shoot it was raining pretty hard. We waited in the production RV  for about 45 minutes to see if it would stop, but it showed no intention of letting up. Rather than can the shot, we decided to make the best of it and prop the shot as if we intended it to rain. We added some rain boots and had one of our assistants put on some rain gear & walk through the shot.



Franz Klammer Lodge by Mark B. Waldron


This image was captured during a shoot for Fairmont Hotels & Resorts.
We arrived at the Fairmont Heritage Place, Franz Klammer Lodge in Telluride Colorado smack in the middle of mud season. Have you ever been at a ski resort during mud season? Nothing going on at all. So quiet…… no restaurants or bars open, town dead, just maintenance going on during the day.
We arrive at the resort for a 5 day shoot of rooms, pools and overall amenities, etc… We meet with the General Manager and marketing person and go over shot list, and at this time they tell us we are the only ones staying there. Ok….. shades of the Stanley Hotel and Redrum run through my head, especially after hearing a few spooky stories from the night manager. We wanted to get this image at sunset but weather wasn’t going to cooperate, so we had to do a sunrise image. We had to go in every room and pull shades and turn on every light on at 4 am in the morning, could have sworn we heard a big wheel running over carpet and hardwood floor.