Salvation Mountain
“Good gets better. Love gets bigger. Keep it simple, love everyone.” – Leonard Knight. September 2011 Salvation Mountain is a colorful art installation covering much of a small hill north of Calipatria, California, near Slab City and just several miles from the Salton Sea. It is made from adobe, straw, and thousands of gallons of paint. It was created by Leonard Knight to convey the message “God Is Love.” Another of Leonard’s expressions “Keep It Simple” refers back to his message of universal love. Knight refused substantial donations of money and labor from supporters who wished to modify his message of universal love to favor or disfavor particular groups. (text from Wikipedia) More information on Salvation Mountain: Salvation Mountain’s Official Website Salvation Mountain: one man’s momument to God’s love. Salvation Mountain – A Visit with Leonard Knight Interview with Leonard Knight Salvation Mountain scene from Into the Wild    
Slab City
Slab City has been created by a small but committed community of squatters in the Colorado Desert of South Eastern California, USA. Taking its name from the concrete slabs that remain from an abandoned World War II base, it is a tragic yet romantic landscape that commands its residents to possess the same balance of beauty and beast. Unbearable temperature highs in summer weed out the many who inhabit the free space in winter leaving only the most resilient, or the most unfortunate, as permanent residents. These same people maintain the ad-hoc infrastructure that makes it such a desirable community to visit in the cooler months. Those who stay year after year could be described as poverty stricken; living in some of the worst conditions in America. Some residents would tell you this is the truth. Others fiercely defend their lifestyle as a deliberate choice of rejecting mainstream society. For these people Slab City provides a freedom they’d never experienced before. There are others who were forced here through circumstance; society won’t tolerate them due to their pasts as felons, addicts or vagrants, but who wholeheartedly embrace the opportunity to live in a community that won’t judge them. Slab City […]
Time Turned Fragile
It’s been awhile, I apologize. The past four months have been some of the busiest and craziest of my life. The past two weeks have been some of the most humbling. I’ll spare you the sappy details, but life always has a way of keeping you in check and reminding you of what’s really important. I’ve been working on a lot of awesome projects, some of which I will be sharing in the near future, but for now – eye candy from the past couple of weeks. Michigan Central Station – Detroit, MI. In Fear & Faith for Alternative Press Hollywood Hills Aaron Stern of D.R.U.G.S. – San Diego Warped Tour Craig Owens of D.R.U.G.S. – San Diego Warped Tour Motion City Soundtrack at House of Blues Hollywood. Awesome friends + their ridiculously good looking kids.
Mike and Nicole: Detroit
Photographing this wedding meant a lot to me. It’s not very often that I visit home and it’s not often to be able to witness and be a part of something so beautiful. Everything about it was perfect. Call me a sap, but moments like these remind what’s really important in life. A little touch of home so you don’t forget your roots, creating memories that will be remembered for your entire life and the company good friends / family. I’ve known Mike for the latter half of my life and he has been one of closest friends for the past 12 years. He’s been there for me regardless of the dilemma, he is everything you could wish for in a good friend. We even started a business together. His family has become my second family – many nights spent watching movies, chopping vegetables, fishing, lighting fireworks, beach house vacations and all around fun. I knew he and Nicole were perfect for each other when they met eight years ago. Nicole is one of the most down the earth, genuine and caring people I’ve met, it was a perfect match. We decided to hit all of the major landmarks in […]
Eric Nicolau
I have been friends with Eric for the past five years.  I met him while he was touring with my friend’s band on Warped Tour – this guy rules.  Not only is he ruggedly handsome and talented, but he’s full of surprises – actor, musician, model and all around bad-ass friend.  He needed some new portraits of himself for an updated portfolio and I was more than happy to help him out.  Be sure to check him out on this season of Glee and stop by his website and listen to his music! Rocking out with John Stamos on the set of “Glee”. He’s playing guitar behind the drums.
Record Store Day
If you didn’t already know, I am a huge Anberlin fan.  When I heard that they’d be releasing “Cities” on vinyl for Record Store Day, I knew I had to get my hands on one.  The most exciting and frustrating part of this day is that there are ton of limited edition vinyl records released specifically for this day, the downside is that you don’t know WHERE they will be released and how many each store will have, if any. I called every single record store in San Diego – none of them had Anberlin.  I called about ten different stores in Michigan (where my family is from) to see if they had any that my mother could possibly pick up.  Nothing.  I was finally able to find a couple of stores in Los Angeles that had a few in stock. I made a quick decision to drive up to Hollywood – a long three hour trek filled with road rage.  I finally made it to Amoeba Music around 2:30 PM and jumped in line.  The employees were passing out lists for us to fill out with our record requests.  At the time, Anberlin was still in stock, I was […]
April Photo Update
Just some photos over the past few months that I can finally post, enjoy!
Alternative Press Tour – D.R.U.G.S.
I was able to spend a couple of days on the Alternative Press Tour with my friends in Destroy Rebuild Until God Shows. Be sure to check them out on the Alternative Press Tour – if you happen to miss them this time around, catch them on all of this year’s Warped Tour! For you tech junkies: Canon 5D, Canon 35 1.4L, Canon 85 1.2L, natural light. No extensive post-processing other than resizing, watermarking and converting from raw to jpg. * photographed through the guitar boat / christmas lights. no fancy tricks. * This is Dakotah, one of the most hard working tour managers / guitar techs I’ve ever met. Say hi to him if you see him.
Destroy Rebuild Until God Shows: Behind the Scenes
As a photographer I feel that in order to really capture true emotions, you need to have a good relationship with your client. Not only will they feel more comfortable around you and the camera, but they’re willing to work with you on a creative level. I enjoy shooting friends because they trust me 100% with my ideas and I’m able to work with theirs as well. When my friend Craig asked me to take some promos for his new band, Destroy Rebuild Until God Shows (D.R.U.G.S.), I immediately jumped on the opportunity. They were on a tight shooting schedule as they had a video shoot later in the morning. I had a two hour time slot to nail out these photos. Being on such a tight schedule meant I needed to scout a location that was relatively easy for the band to find and also be able to use a couple spots within the same area. While driving through the Hollywood Hills last year, I ended up getting lost somewhere on the winding road and ended up in one of the most breathtaking spots I’ve ever seen. Ever since I discovered the spot, I’ve wanted to save it for […]
Adestria: Behind the Scenes
I haven’t updated this blog in over eight months. I took a break to reinvent myself and find that fire that previously fueled my passion. Needless to say, I’m back… and it feels good. My buddy Chris asked me to take some new photos of his band, Adestria. He said they wanted to stray away from the typical band photo / brick wall / etc, etc. We originally planned on shooting in downtown San Diego, but I made a last minute decision to shoot in an abandoned naval center that’s now used for fire fighter training. Since this was an active location (the fire fighting school was across the street and airport security has random drive-bys), we had to be extra careful to be as discreet as possible. I’ve always wanted to do a conceptual shoot in this location since it’s literally the location of a post zombie apocalypse. Be sure to check out Adestria. They’ve been named one of the top ten unsigned bands in the country and they’ll be featured in the upcoming issue of Alternative Press. More importantly, check out the photo with the article ;) Tech Specs I’m a fan of simple lighting and I usually […]
Apr 03
Pierce the Veil Teaser
Happy Birthday to my mom / Ann Rork!
Feb 05
Handguns for Hearts / MikeyWhiskeyHands
From the Handguns for Hearts website: Due to the overwhelming response we received on the last shirt, we are going to be taking pre-orders for the new MikeyWhiskeyHands shirt. All pre-orders will come with an autographed 8×10 shot by Nicole Rork. Pre-orders will ship 2/15/10. Limited edition of 100!!
Jan 14
Help Haiti – Photo Sessions
After the recent tragic events that took place in Haiti, I’ve decided to help out in any way I can. For $100, I will do a 20-30 minute photo session with you. 100% of the proceeds will go to a Haiti charity of your choice. What you will receive: – Photo session (20-30 minutes) in the San Diego area – The best photos in high resolution, fully edited and ready to print (up to 20×30″) – 8×10 print of your choice If you are interested in booking a shoot, please contact me. You can email me here: [email protected] or through my Contact page Feel free to spread the word, you can re-tweet this post by clicking on the “retweet” button in the upper right hand corner.