How do you spell, ‘Oh, hi?’

Post by Keith
I volunteered to be an author on here because Brad assured me it would bring tremendous fame and prestige. But after two days of Brad harassing me to post something, I’m starting to think he just wants to save himself some work by not having to put my pictures up.

Before I really get started, though, I feel compelled to offer up a bit of background on the blog. I’m sure you’ve all seen the dozens of snappers that have been posted on this blog since its inception, such as these from when we all converged on a library in Oak View.

Summer school

Dave and a young’n   Research

Fun, right? Here’s the picture you don’t usually get to see:


Yes, folks, that’s right: our snappers are set up. I’m sorry to be the one that has to admit it, but I just can’t write on the blog without putting the truth out there.

I also wanted to post this picture of the rental car that Brad was driving while his Volvo was in for repair. He mentioned in a previous post how lame the car was, but I think a picture tells the story better.

Rental Car

That car was so underpowered it made time pass slower. I’ve been here for just over a week now, but it feels like it’s been longer than that. I definitely like how it’s going, though; the land out here is beautiful and is entirely new to me. I can wander around and shoot pictures during the day without all the responsibility and set hours of a real job that an internship would bring. And I don’t bother checking the weather. I know that it’s going to be warm and sunny, and the light is perfect every night. Ventura and Ojai are both highly visual, diverse cities that I haven’t explored nearly enough. It’s the way summer should be.


kas20070618sunset295.jpg   kas20070620sunset031.jpg   kas20070620sunset217.jpg

kas20070621grandpamac021.jpg   kas20070620sunset257.jpg   Getting the picture

The greatest benefit of my trip so far, or at least the greatest unexpected benefit, is seeing all the places that Dave has told us about — such as when he points to a hill next to the courthouse in Ventura and says, “That’s where I got married,” or when he takes us down a road where he photographed one of his first spot news assignments. I’m a visual person; being able to connect those stories to actual places makes them far more meaningful.

One story that I’ve heard Dave mention several times is about his high school photography teacher, Mr. MacArthur. “I can still change your grade, you know,” he always tells Dave. But that story takes on a new dimension when I can sit in Grandpa Mac’s living room and listen as he says those exact words to Dave.


That’s Grandpa Mac on the right, listening while his neighbor Susannah plays guitar Thursday night. Out of frame, Elliott and Brad are playing their guitars, too, along with Pete, another friend of Dave’s, while the rest of us listen (and photograph, of course).


(Well, I actually don’t know what Brad is doing in that last one, but we’ll just assume he’s playing his guitar.)

Grandpa Mac was pretty quiet Thursday night; he made a few jokes and asked some questions, but for the most part just enjoyed the music in his home. It contrasted with the first time I met him on Monday, when I sat enthralled for an hour as told stories of growing up in Ventura — a massive Navy shipwreck of the coast, the teacher that inspired him to take on the same career, his time in the military, and of course a few stories about Dave as a student.

It’s certainly interesting having three generations of photographers sitting together in the same room. The technology has certainly changed over the years — we’ve grown up on digital photography, Dave is transitioning to it, and Grandpa Mac knows next to nothing about it and has no need to learn — but great photographs are timeless. Grandpa Mac has two rows of prints hanging over his couch, photos of his family taken over the years, and they’re the same sort of photographs we strive to capture now.



Another conspiracy! I wrote captions for some of the photos in this post, but they refused to appear once I published. Another blatant case of the system trying to keep the full truth from you, the reader. To keep you all properly informed, here’s the captions for the above photos. Well, the photos I felt like captioning, which is really only a few of them.

Elliott reading: Elliott studies for his summer correspondence class at the library in Oak View. His final paper is on this book, “A Secret for Grandmother’s Birthday” by Franz Brandenburg.

Sitting at tables: Dave LaBelle on the right, one of the kids on the left. Henry? Tucker? Elliott, Brad? I don’t remember; they all run together.

“Reading” Where’s Waldo: After we found Waldo, we took his picture and gave him a business card. We’re getting pretty desperate for sales.

The expose: Sorry, folks, all those snappers you know and love, the ones you have hanging on your walls and flipping by on your screen saver? They’re all set up.

The car: This is what happens when the rental company asks you what kind of car you want and all you say is, “I don’t care, as long as it’s a four door.” The car was up on blocks, but we took those to hold the table up at the office.

Anonymous cowboy hat: There are very few clouds in the sky around here, making for some pretty lame sunsets. Here Ed crawls through the tall grass to try and get a closer shot without scaring away the clouds. The hat’s also important because it… actually, the hat is just goofy.


3 Responses to “How do you spell, ‘Oh, hi?’”

  1. Great stuff Keith! Fame & fortune will come your way soon I’m sure.

    It’s good to learn the “truth” behind the pictures.

  2. Christen Says:

    Come now, that hat is important for more than the fact that it’s silly. That hat is terribly important because you had to buy it specifically for the blah blah blah and I had to run down Hagerman so that we could wear it while we were blah blah blah and…okay, it’s only important because it’s very, very silly. And so by that logic, I think that would make the four of you very, very, VERY important.

  3. Christen Says:

    Also, Keith, will you take pictures of ice cream for me? I don’t care what kind.

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