Monday, May 23, 2011

Chasing America- by Beckett

The Utata Photography group that I enjoy acts as a very informative group mind, spreading news on interesting things occurring in the world, many related to photography. They led me to this fellow, who went chasing one of the American Dreams, and photographed what he found..
On The Road.
David Michael Kennedy decided to rediscover his life and America in an old fashioned way: by traveling around the country with his girlfriend and his dog in a 1959 Airstream trailer. He photographed what grabbed his fancy with a handmade 4x5 camera, using film he developed himself in his homemade darkroom inside the trailer, using the antique platinum palladium process used by such photographers as Ansel Adams.

This NPR article interviews him and he talks about what started the idea, the sorts of places they went and how wrong turns along the way led to new discoveries.
Upon doing very little digging I found (to my shame at my own ignorance) that David Michael Kennedy is a famous photographer who has had a long, successful and thriving career as a photographer, a feat that's rare and difficult to achieve these days.
Muddy Waters
He talks on his website about how he managed to get into doing photography for album covers among other commercial work; it's well worth a read just to see how a real professional navigates around the usual barriers to getting regular clients and establishing long term working relationships as the photographer who gets called as first choice.
Bob Dylan
Kennedy offers workshops and has an active and thriving gallery presence. He lives in a small town in New Mexico and has been doing more personal and less commercial work, documenting people with environmental portraits, using his abilities and experience to support causes he believes in. His workshops sound wonderful; check out his video of his workshop, the development process and his house for a taste of what he does these days.
Seems like he's found a pretty good American Dream to me.

(All photographs are copyright David Michael Kennedy, please don't use without permission.)


  1. Wow...LOVE his photographs. I'm going to have to check out his website. Thanks for posting this, Beckett!

  2. Hi
    I love you've encluded me on your blog but could you please change the nam on the image David Micheal Kennedy, Heather Howard and Henry Crow Dog.
    to just On The Road.
    Dvid MIchael Kennedy