25 December 2010

09 December 2010

Lots of miles and a disappointing college football game

Since I last checked in I have logged a lot of miles on the ole' VW.

After completing my marathon road trip across the MidWest with my buddy Brent, I made my back to Charlotte for a few days....   Only to load up Dottie B. and travel to SW Florida to see my father and his wife for Thanksgiving.

Dottie B. on the beach in FL

I returned to Charlotte for all of 5 days before returning to my true home, my 2003 VW GTi.   This time, I made my way to Dallas, TX and the Big XII Championship football game.   This game marked the last conference meeting between the University of Nebraska and the University of Oklahoma.   Both rivals are steeped in tradition and have laid claim to a staggering number of conference championships.

The game was definitely an exciting one.  But, Nebraska managed to blow a 17 point lead and eventually lose by a score of 23-20.

Jerry World, Dallas, TX

The trip was definitely worth it though.   My only hope is that Nebraska manages to make it to the inaugural Big 10 championship game next December in Indianapolis.

In addition to my boys blowing the game, I also failed to book any shoots while I was in Dallas.   This is unfortunate given the large number of people I know in the DFW area.  But, perhaps another time.  I did get to see a lot of old friends (and a few newer ones), which is always nice.

Ryan and Aaron...  A couple NC Huskers

The Fowler family from Omaha + San Antonio

Brad, Rani, and Mark, now living in Dallas

Jason and Stephanie, Houston

I was also able to meet Cornhusker legend "Touchdown" Tommie Frasier.

Special thanks to Frank, Justin, and Max Samland for their generosity!

Justin, Frank, and Max Samland...  Omaha

After Dallas, I made my way to nYc to work for a week or so photographing Coach...   No rest for the wicked.   Next up is another trip back down to Charlotte and then off to Nebraska for Christmas.

12 November 2010

Recap - Two weeks on the road...

A few weeks ago I began a multi-purpose journey.
Near Asheville, NC
Much like a road trip I made four years ago, my old friend, fraternity brother, and software developer, Brent, was my co-pilot.  Our mission was clear...   Make it to Omaha, NE, by October 30th for the Mizzou vs NEBRASKA football game.   In addition, book as many portrait shoots as possible to underwrite the journey and see as many friends as possible.

For me, this trip would also provide a welcomed distraction from my troubles.

I began this journey in Charlotte, NC.  I made my way to Indianapolis, IN where I met up with Brent.   I spent a couple of days in Indy, checking out the city and neighboring towns, meeting up for lunch with our pal Jagger, and becoming acquainted with Brent's baby boy, William.
Downtown Indy

Me, Brent, Jagger...  Indy
Hoosier's Gym...  Knightstown, IN

Since I have been photographing a lot of children and families, I offered to do Henry's 6 month portrait.   We made our way over to a small town in Indiana where some scenes from the motion picture Hoosiers were filmed.   I photographed the boy and his parents in and around an old gymnasium.  Not an ideal location (because of the light), but something different and fun.

Henry - © Scott S. Clinton / Simulacra.com


After a couple of days, Brent and I began making our way to his parent's home in Terre Haute, IN.  While en route, our paths crossed with a truly amazing individual...  Tom W.    Tom is a former teacher and coach.  He holds several advanced degrees (including a masters in astrophysics).  Now retired, Tom was looking for a project...  and boy did he find one.   It seems that this former tennis coach was having a difficult time finding people to play tennis with him on his home court.  That combined with a desire to travel freely and economically with his wife, led him to him to begin a truly spectacular project...  Tom is building a 55' sailboat, from scratch...  Out of steel.

He converted his tennis court into his dry dock, purchased the plans off of the internet, created all of the necessary hardware to construct the vessel, and began.   From the keel up, he has constructed this marvel...   All told, 13 tons of steel have gone into her construction.   She is aptly named FAITH and is set to be completed sometime this spring, 2011.

Money and subject willing, I hope to revisit Tom this spring and photograph him with a completed FAITH.

Our encounter with Tom and his wife proved to be our only "project" worthy encounter during our travels.

Tom W. and his little project, FAITH.© Scott S. Clinton, ScottClinton.com

After spending the evening with Brent's parents in Terre Haute, we made our way over to St. Louis, MO, home of our alma mater, Washington University.   While there, I made a portrait of the Clarke family.  After the shoot, we made our way over to our friends' the Khazen's for a great meal.  Brent's brother Dan was good enough to allow us to couch surf that night.

The Khazen's
The next day we made our way to Omaha, NE...   Stopping in Kansas City, MO to see our friend Nilesh and to dine on some world famous Arthur Bryant's BBQ.  We also stopped at the Chase candy company (home of Cherry Mash) and the Stetson hat outlet...  Both in St. Joseph, MO.

We made it to Omaha late in the day, Friday, October 29th...

We spend some time hanging out with my mother that night, grabbed a drink with my friend Kelly, and prepared for Saturday's battle.

For those who do not know, Brent and I vowed in November 1997 (while watching the Mizzou v. NEBRASKA game) that we, for the rest of our lives would view that game, together, in person.   We both held true to our word and hit every match up...  12 years straight.   Unfortunately, this was the last year...  Nebraska has joined a new athletic conference and will no longer be playing Mizzou.  In the end, the Husker's were victorious and completed a record of 9 wins 3 losses during our 12 year run.

Traditional Pre-Game shot

Ever confident Brent

Scared Mizzou Tiger

Nebraska Victory!

After the game, we had some dinner with my mother and made our way out to celebrate Halloween.

Sunday (Halloween day) marked my 35th year on this earth.  We celebrated with a nice brunch and steak dinner...  And some sinful birthday cake.

We hung around Omaha for another couple of days, had lunch with my old friend Lisa and even found time to hit the SAC Museum in Ashland, NE.
SR-71 Blackbird
© Scott S. Clinton

Wednesday came and it was time to once again hit the road.   We made our way across Iowa, en route to Chicago, IL.   While traveling through Iowa, we stopped off in Winterset, IA....  Birth Place of John Wayne

and location for the movie The Bridges of Madison County.  We had a nice lunch at the Northside Cafe

and made our way over to Van Meter, IA and the Bob Fellar museum (Brent's choice).

In Chicago, we met up some more old friends, Goofy, P-Do, and Jenni.

Jenni was not only good enough to allow Brent and I to crash as her place, but was also good enough to hire me to photograph her family.  To thank her, I took us all to lunch at Kuma's Corner, home of the greatest burger ever...  The CLUTCH burger.

From Chi-town, we made our way down to Lincoln, IL to see our old pal Don Cicci.  He showed us around town and introduced us to the Horseshoe Sandwich.

After a screening of Almost Famous (which is one of my favorite films) and an all too short night of sleep, we made tracks back to Terre Haute, IN and the completion of Brent's portion of the trip.

Running behind as always, I made my way to Nashville, TN where I had a booking with our old friend Rachel.   While there, I was also able to catch up with Sarah.   So, after another all too short night of sleep (after honky tonkin w/ Sarah and her friends),

a successful shoot with Rachel's family, and meals at the Waffle House and Carl's Perfect Pig, I made my way over to Knoxville.

Once again, I was running late.   I met up with Casey, Crystal, Ricky, and Kary and proceeded to stay out entirely too late...  Again.

Sunday came and so did another booking...  Casey and Crystal's engagement portrait at the University of Tennessee's football facility.   The shoot turned into a long one, but a good one.   Well worth the time and effort.

From there, it was time to head back to Charlotte.   Two weeks on the road had taken their toll on me.   I was exhausted and ready to sleep in my own bed.

After a couple days of recovery, I made myself busy...   Editing the 65+ Gigabytes of images captured on the trip.  Like clockwork, my return to Charlotte also marked the return of my troubles.   I keep trying to forget and they keep resurfacing.  Time does not heal all wounds.   Perhaps it will, however, deaden the pain.

Until then, next up...  Houston, TX and the Texas A&M v. NEBRASKA game!

Lincoln, NE's historic Haymarket (at dusk)
© Scott S. Clinton 

26 October 2010

Soap box rant...

So, I need to take a few moments to rant.  

Recently, I discovered that one of my photos had been featured in an article about the lead singer of Clutch, Neil Fallon.   

Photo :  © Scott S. Clinton, ScottClinton.com

Normally, this exposure would be a great thing...  Neil is a solid person and an amazing performer.   But, this time, the exposure was anything but great.  Either the writer of the article or the publisher of Crave Online decided to use my image with out obtaining my permission.  To make matters worse, they actually cropped my copyright out of said image and failed to acknowledge me with a photo credit or link.

It appears to me that Crave Online is a for profit online magazine.  Logic dictates that they should know better than to simply take images off of the web and use them without getting permission.   Or, should they do choose to violate artists' copyrights, to at least have the decency to provide a proper photo credit and link. 

Needless to say, I was very angry about this unauthorized usage (more angry about not getting credit).   So, I fired the following email off to the people of Crave Online:


This evening, I came across an interview with Neil Fallon (of Clutch) on CraveOnline.com, dated 19 October 2010 (http://www.craveonline.com/entertainment/music/article/neil-fallon-of-clutch-company-band-114703). This article features an image of Neil performing live which I captured (created). This presents a problem for you as you have violated my copyright by not obtaining/purchasing proper usage rights for this or any other image. To make matters worse, you did not even have the decency to give me a proper photo credit.

Contrary to popular belief, images found on the web are not public domain. Images like this one are the property of the person who created it... In this case, me. Of course, usage (for print, web, etc) can be purchased by an individual or company, which CraveOnline FAILED to do. Images cost money to create and in turn cost money to use. Since you are running a for profit website, you should be aware of this already.

You have two options:

1) Remove the image in question immediately and send me a written apology with an explanation of how you justify infringing my my copyright.
2) Contact me for my pricing information for web usage. Then, after a rate has been agreed upon, provide a proper photo credit "Photo: © Scott S. Clinton / ScottClinton.com," a link on your website, and a written apology (with an explanation of how you justify infringing on my copyright).

Failure to comply with one of the above solutions by end of business (EDT) 22 October 2010 will result in a legal escalation of this matter.

I appreciate your prompt attention to this matter.


Scott S. Clinton
Principal + Photographer, Scott Clinton Photography

Within one hour of sending the email, they had removed my image and replaced it with another illegally obtained image.  This one by fellow photographer Steve Truglio (Clutch's Staff Photographer).

I should mention that I did receive a quick little apology email from one Ahmad T. Childress of Crave Online.  He failed to acknowledge that he/they had broken the law...  In fact, it basically said nothing.

This experience has left me more disenfranchised with the current state of the photography industry than ever before.   More and more I feel like working for private individuals doing portraits and weddings is the way to go.   I love commercial photography...  I love shooting bands...  But, I will not continue to put my energy into providing a product for which I am not properly compensated (or credited).

*Edit - 27 October*

I just discovered a second crappy online magazine, AntiQuiet.com, used the same image in question back in 2008...  Again, without permission...  Without credit...  Without a link.   Grrrr!


(end rant)

18 October 2010

Another day... Another trip to nYc.

This past weekend was spent trying to forget.   With the help of some of my good friends in Charlotte, I was able to do just that... If only for a few hours.

Sunday was spent driving North to PA.   Unfortunately, my start was later than I wished, but I was able to spend some time with my friends Randy and Jen.  Typically, I look forward to my drives as a way to catch up with friends (via cell phone) and an undisturbed opportunity to clear my head.  This time, the drive was torture.  I mind was wondering to places it shouldn't have...  I found myself dwelling.  I found myself playing the what if game.  I found myself wishing I was on my trip to Spain/France and not driving North to PA/NY.  

Spending time with my friends last night in PA was nice, and did offer me some distraction.

Today (and tomorrow) are all about working...  Shooting at the Coach studios.  Again, distraction is good.

Wednesday I will make the drive back down South and hope that I can stay focused and not dwell.

Wednesday night, Thursday night, and Sunday night are booked up with live concerts in Charlotte.   Saturday, time for college football!  Maybe some pro football on Sunday afternoon.

Monday AM, I'll be hitting the road again...   This time to the MidWest.   Much more on that later.

14 October 2010

At long last...

Scott S. Clinton, photographer, is attempting to remove his head from is posterior.

After almost 12 months of failing to blog, I am changing my ways. Today I launched a new blog specifically for my portrait business, Simulacra Photography. Become a follower today!

This blog will serve to be more of a personal account of my photography, life, and travels.

The cat is out of the bag... I moved my principal residence to Charlotte, NC back in January. For reasons I won't go into, I chose to keep that under my hat. I am still traveling to nYc every two/four weeks for shoots and plan to continue for some time.

The past 10 months here have been interesting to say the least. Many positives, too many negatives... Both personally and professionally. I have experienced major setbacks and soul crushing let downs these past few months at the expense of my career and the people I care about. Hopefully, the worst is over and the blood letting can cease.

On the positive, Simulacra is starting to gain some traction, inquiries and bookings are both headed in the correct direction for both portraits and weddings. On a personal front, I am starting to make some great friends here in Charlotte.

October through December promises to be very busy for me with traveling and bookings, which... Is a good thing. Destinations include: NYC, Indianapolis, St. Louis, Omaha, Chicago, Nashville, Knoxville, Houston, Dallas, and Austin.

With any luck, I can make a real push in 2011 for success in my personal life, my commercial photography, and my portrait photography.