The Scrapbook of Photographer Andrew Sullivan

Archive for the ‘Ideas’ Category

Many Changes, Many Chances, Many Challenges

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The bar has been raised.

Reading “The $100 Startup” by Chris Guillebeau has filled me with ideas about how to move forward with my work and life. From location independence to self-publishing to diversifying the ways I share my work and help clients, this book has sparked many new thoughts and reinforced the idea of limitless possibility. Chris talks about “solopreneurs,” individuals taking their ideas and expertise and working for themselves.

The distinction between a freelancer and a solopreneur is refreshing. It’s a transition from being a gun for hire to empowering myself to make my business a proactive extension of my interests and lifestyle. I’ll still pursue assignments from my clients, while also going directly to a worldwide audience online. With some new creative collaborations that I’ll be announcing this year, exciting times are ahead.


Written by Andrew Sullivan

May 29th, 2012 at 11:37 am

Solitude Essay Published on Zocalo Public Square

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“If I take the easy way out, I fall. If I focus and trust, I ascend…”

In conjunction with a discussion about Cheryl Strayed’s new memoir, “Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail,” asked me to write a short essay about how I seek solitude. While there is an appeal to spending time wandering forest trails or backcountry skiing, I need a more regular escape to healthy alone time, and I can find it in a place many people dread. Click over here to read more.

Written by Andrew Sullivan

April 12th, 2012 at 11:03 am

Workshop Day One

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Erica McDonald and I have begun The Intuitive Document workshop in Brooklyn. Nine photographers traveled from Italy to work on the streets and study with us. They have a week to explore NYC with their cameras and bring back a fresh body of work. Our hosts Roberto and Laura will provide daily updates on the workshop blog. I’ll do my best to show some photos and give brief updates. This Saturday we’ll celebrate the students’ work with a festive slideshow and maybe a few beers.

We’re going to encourage the students to stretch and break their comfort zones, and photograph with newfound intensity. We encountered Angelica as she whirled with her hula hoop in a park off Broadway near the JMZ. Angelica showed no self-consciousness, just the confidence to be comfortable among a group of strangers with cameras fascinated by her ability.

Catching this energetic lady in a moment of repose at the end of our meeting, I imagined her offering us good luck as we embark on this wild week of creative adventure. Thank you, Angelica.

Written by Andrew Sullivan

May 23rd, 2010 at 8:42 pm


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Jorge Colombo uses an iPhone app called “Brushes” to make digital paintings reminiscent of the work of painter Edward Hopper. The New Yorker magazine’s website features Colombo in a blog called “Fingerpainting.”

Each post is an animated video of the steps Colombo takes while creating his pictures. It’s beautiful, inspiring work. Really fun to see.

Jorge Colombo | The New Yorker

Written by Andrew Sullivan

February 10th, 2010 at 12:51 pm

Paolo Ventura

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Here’s an interview with Paolo Ventura on his new book Winter Stories, in which a dying circus performer remembers everyday moments of his life. The astonishing photos show hand-built miniature scenes of mid-century Italy. I spent hours with the book, in awe of Ventura’s imagination and the execution of his ideas. Ventura spent more than a week assembling the miniature books in this picture. Does this shop have a first edition of The Americans or The Decisive Moment hidden in the shelves somewhere?

Libri E Stampi | Paolo Ventura

Written by Andrew Sullivan

January 19th, 2010 at 10:20 am

Photo-eye’s Books of ’09

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If you’re in need of some inspiration or ideas for a wish list, photo-eye magazine’s curated list of 2009′s top photo books is a good place to start. Twenty-seven prominent photographers, editors and critics comment on their top ten favorites of the year.

“Looking In,” the volume celebrating the 50-year anniversary of the publication of Robert Frank’s “The Americans,” was on nine of the the curators’ lists, essentially earning the top spot on the “master list.” I’d have to agree. It’s a seminal work, filled with historical and critical essays, contact sheets and hundreds of pictures. Essential reading.

Written by Andrew Sullivan

January 19th, 2010 at 10:05 am

Intuition, Persistence

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“The aliveness of the unguarded intuition and the persistence of our own feelings guide us to our discoveries.” Quote by Emmett Gowin from an interview published in American Suburb X.

The first I often distrust, the second I often lack. So I’m working on trusting the sixth sense and sticking to it..

Written by Andrew Sullivan

September 23rd, 2009 at 10:50 am

Mindy McAdams’ Multimedia Guide

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Download journalism instructor Mindy McAdams’ no-nonsense & fantastic PDF “Reporter’s Guide to Multimedia Proficiency” here. I’m on Step 2, “Start a blog.”

I hope her contention, “…writing a blog with commitment, on some kind of a regular schedule, makes you smarter,” turns out to work on this old brain of mine.

Written by Andrew Sullivan

September 10th, 2009 at 12:58 pm

Posted in Ideas,Must-See

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Antonin Kratochvil

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There’s a gritty profile of Antonin Kratochvil in Outside Magazine that reveals quite a bit about one of the founders of VII. He’s a genuine bad-ass who was forced to join the French Foreign Legion while trying to find political asylum.

“The Legion shipped him to the north-central African nation of Chad, where he fought against Libya-backed rebels for a few months. Later that year, while lugging ammunition at a Legion base in Marseille, he stole a length of rope and used it to lower himself off a high wall. He ran to a nearby rail station, hopped a commuter train, and fled toward Holland, which he’d seen only in pictures.”

Bernardo Bertolucci | by Antonin Kratochvil

Written by Andrew Sullivan

August 28th, 2009 at 2:01 pm

Robert Frank Interview

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My friend Erica McDonald, a portrait and documentary photographer in Brooklyn, kindly shared this interview with me recently. Public radio’s Bob Edwards talked to Frank about his groundbreaking work, including his book “The Americans,” which redefined documentary photography. It’s about an hour long, but good to listen to while working on images in Photoshop or driving to your next shoot. One highlight is Frank talking about Walker Evans writing the application for the Guggenheim Fellowship that paid for Frank’s travels around the USA.

Written by Andrew Sullivan

March 17th, 2009 at 12:09 pm