Thursday, January 29, 2015

Meditation On The Obvious

Photo: © S. Banos

No, it probably won't make the official "portfolio," but it's actually one of my favorite shots. It's the kind of shot that probably had passerby wondering what the hell that nut was taking a picture of, the kind of shot that had me wondering what the hell I was taking a picture of. And most of the time, when the banality level is that high- the picture does in fact... suck. No doubt, most people looking at it probably think it sucks, and sucks bad. I got no problem with that. 

Surprisingly, the shot came off exactly as I wanted, which doesn't exactly guarantee anything in and of itself- especially when there's just so very little there to begin with. Human imperfection, front and center, accentuated and amplified in almost perfect symmetry for all to see- lipstick on a pig! Someone thought to go all out and class up the joint by sticking a couple of Ionic columns on a building facade already so fake and shallow, it just screams- "Why!?"

Why do we do it? Why do we always so desperately try to be exactly that which we are so clearly not- when it's all so desperately obvious...

Wednesday, January 28, 2015


A few weeks ago I was sick with the flu- wouldn't wish actually, vengeful fuck that I am, there's a mile long shit list of folks I'd wish it on, starting with: W- The Decider, Rummy- The Prick in Chief, 4X Deferment Cheney... Yeah, a whole lotta people I'd wish it on. It seriously kicks ass, and I'm still far from 100%.

Anywho, a few minutes blogging each day kept my spirits up, but now I'm pretty much- spent. Actually, I'm working on an interview that I'm really looking forward to putting up early next week. And then... the ol' blog may go on respite, slow to the proverbial trickle or maybe, just maybe, it'll be time to finally call it a day. I know, I know- I've threatened this before, so I'm not going to go through the motions yet again. Like I said, probably just need to recharge... then again, just in case- it's been a blast!

Monday, January 26, 2015

Ryann Ford's Last Stop

Photo: Ryann Ford

Can't believe just how good this essay is, each and every photo a small world unto itself- and a near perfect one at that! Each and every image a sight to behold for its: beauty, humor, and alas, fragility- many of the subjects no longer exist. The perfect amalgam of history and kitsch, scenic wonder and nostalgic delight; like a good film comedy or stand up routine, that absolute rarest of commodities that manages to import and redefine so many of life's trivialities, offering depth and insight well beyond the cheap laugh.

Won't be the most important, socially relevant, or artistically innovative monograph of the year, but Ryann Ford's The Last Stop will be THE book I want most in 2015, one that I will look at often, with great pleasure, and for many a year to come...

Photo: Ryann Ford

Saturday, January 24, 2015

Age Old Truisms, Part...

Photo: © S. Banos

Granted this no doubt has an overwhelmingly greater philosophical (and humorous) impact in your twenties, than in your fifties. That said, it's the kinda thing that'll no doubt continue to provide insight and entertainment... for generations to come.

Thursday, January 22, 2015


Nelson, our one eyed, man-child of a feline.
Photo: © Lisa Wood

That's right, the rumors you've been hearing are true. We may be turning this into a 24/7 cats only blog on a paid, subscription only basis. Nothing set in stone yet, but it's a revenue rich avenue we've been contemplating for quite some time- stay tuned...

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

The Limited Edition Street Leica Avec Documentary

As recently chronicled, seems my whole approach towards achieving photographic fame and immortality has been ill advised at best. More and more these days, one now makes the self congratulatory, self aggrandizing pseudo documentary first and foremost, well in anticipation of actually becoming either famous or deserving. After all, who knows your own inherent greatness better than you, and waiting for other people to recognize just how great you are is, ya know: wasted time, over rated, and iffy at best. And there's always the chance that half those idiots will be so busy hatin' on ya- and working on their own documentaries about how great... they are!

It's just the new order of things; and when all is said and done, the whole photo greatness thing just falls naturally into place like a well worn... Leica (another thing these guys haven't yet earned themselves either).

Monday, January 19, 2015

Too Good To Win!

So eternal optimist/glutton for punishment enters his first competition of the year: it seemed respectable enough with proper rules, rights and jury- what's to lose, besides another, rather reasonable entry fee, and perhaps the last remaining vestige of whatever's left of my once youthful pride and dignity?

The results... the usual- with a twist. A very nice person involved in the competition (but not the judging) emails to tell me how much they liked my work, then asks if it was "a positive experience," and if I had any pertinent feedback. I reply that: I appreciate that their judging occurs anonymously (w/o the entrants names attached), but am very much surprised that an already familiar photograph that has already garnered critical acclaim won first prize, and that not even making it unto the honorable mention shortlist can't exactly make for "a positive experience." I receive yet another response saying said person just viewed my website and that with work that good... I didn't really need them! Seriously, they-actually-said-that. The guy who wins is represented by Panos and Getty, has appeared in Nat Geo, The Guardian, The BBC, etc, etc... he just "needs" it more than me!!!

Of course! It was as I had suspected all along, years of artistic trials and tribulations have finally honed me into a paramount creative force that has seen me progress and evolve from someone simply beneath consideration- to someone well beyond any possibility of ever being considered!!! This is the year...


Sunday, January 18, 2015

Honesty And Mass Murderers

On one hand you have those that kill innocents seemingly for the hell of it, sometimes even killing themselves in the process- then there are those who claim to be beyond such outright barbarism, kill anyway- then proclaim innocence. I'd say they're both small minded, murderous bastards- and very much deserving of each other. But one is definitely the bigger liar.

But... Stan! Over a dozen innocent people were just slaughtered in Paris- where's your so called compassion for them!? And over 2 thousand more in Nigeria- and don't forget the hundreds of thousands we're personally responsible for in Iraq for no good reason (making Sniper doesn't count), not to mention our ongoing drone collateral recruitment program... that never does gets mentioned. The point is, it's time we stop playing whack-a-mole throughout the world and start addressing this global problem as a human one, one that can not be addressed, let alone solved strictly by military means... Ours, or theirs.

And another thing's for damn sure- Houdini in all his greatness could not have pulled off what the US of A claims these three did one night (in their zeal to get back at us)...

Friday, January 16, 2015

My Kingdom For A Hunch

I had no idea, no freakin' idea whatsoever that the person responsible for discovering King Richard III's body in a car park was not only not a historian, not an archaeologist- but someone who was basically a King Richard III groupie operating on the wildest hunch imaginable! Un-Freakin'-Believable!!!

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

I'm Not A Scientist...

So if I had even the slightest sense (of humility), I really would keep my fucking mouth shut (if only to spare myself the embarrassment)- but since so many of my fellow colleagues in Congress are also bought and paid for by oil companies, and our constituents actually believe in talking snakes and FOX News- what's to stop me!?!?

Friday, January 9, 2015

Making Us Accomplices To Al Qaeda

(via Bag News Notes)

This article in The Nation is one of the most enlightening thing I've read since that despicable act of murder and insanity at Charlie Hebdo. While everyone is concentrating on the obvious, the terrorists didn't even have to plan the second outcome- humanity itself will see to it that we ourselves will comply with the killers' wishes...

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

The Hypocrisy Of The NRA

Frontline forgot one critical, key piece of legislation in their presentation...

Just how hypocritical the NRA is, has already been well documented when they wholeheartedly and enthusiastically supported The Mulford Act, which was passed to ban Open Carry in Oakland- specifically so The Black Panthers could not bear arms in public. It's always a laugh when NRA supporters give their usual spiel about: freedom, self protection, the Constitution, this or that amendment, and how Potus is gonna sneak into their homes and take all their guns away if they dare fall asleep. They want as many of each and every kind of gun known to mankind for one reason and one reason only- so that their delusional, racist, paranoid constituency can keep darkie "in their place."

*And... their hero Governor Ronald Reagan signed it; it's not like anyone's fooling anyone...

Saturday, January 3, 2015


Interesting flick where life and acting, acting and life interact and intercede, and everyone gets called on who they are, what they are and what the hell they're trying to prove. Self indulgent? You bet- but everyone pays the price. And the only Black in the whole movie is the same guy providing the sound track, who we catch occasional glimpses of in the background, laying down the film's cacophonous drum beat, as if all the while reminding us that even in these "post racial" times, many of these artistic and lifestyle problems and decisions still remain in the realm of... "White people's problems."

Thursday, January 1, 2015


Photo: © S. Banos

Due to some serious family related concerns, 2015 does not exactly promise to be a "fun" year, nevertheless it is one of those doors that we all encounter, and eventually must open (and enter)- such is life...

And it ain't gonna put no damper on my New Year's Eve- no sir! I got me 2 pints of PBR and 454 emails to delete, spam and unsubscribe... 

Happy New Year- One and All...