Friday, September 25, 2015

Adobe Photoshop Elements 14

Adobe Photoshop Elements 14, Released September 24, 2015

With an image that has one foot in Norman Rockwell and the other foot firmly planted in the dark sense of discovery that is both childhood and parenthood, I couldn't have been more surprised when Adobe approached us about this project. 

Why would they want to brand their product with this image? What does it mean? 

A friend suggested that the image might be about making something out of nothing, sending a d.i.y. message of infinite possibilities with the simple power of vision. 

And with that in mind, this inspired use doesn't seem surprising at all.

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Stanford Physics Department With Stand Ins

Every shoot needs a stand in.....correct?

Happy to have Eli and Wilson hanging out on this day to help me scout the location and navigate the lighting for the legends of physics I was about to photograph.

Thanks to Monica Bradley of Scientific American for this thoughtful collaboration.

Monday, September 21, 2015

From My Window

Summer Slams On The Brakes, 9/2015

Monday, September 14, 2015

Augusta Lee Collins / The Stratosphere

So sorry to hear about the loss of Augusta Lee Collins.

As a photographer, you meet a lot of people just once. The meetings slip through your fingers and life very quickly. Some people stick with you, stay in your stratosphere, always reminding you that you had once crossed paths. Augusta was exactly that.

Onward ⚡

Augusta Lee Collins, 69, made a name for himself as a session drummer with numerous bands coming through the Bay Area, including sitting in with jazz greats Herbie Hancock, "Cannonball" Adderley, Sun Ra and Bobby Hutcherson. But over the last 30 years, Collins reinvented himself as a blues singer and guitarist and was a fixture at farmers' markets and blues jams in the region.

While he never achieved great fame, his long career left an impact on local musicians who remember him as influential and inspiring but very humble. In the course of his reinvention from drummer to singer and guitarist, he overcame a drug problem and homelessness but always remained an icon, Bay Area Blues Society executive director Ronnie Stewart said Wednesday.

In 2010, Collins was inducted into the West Coast Blues Hall of Fame. Collins' musical career dates back to the thriving West Oakland music scene of the 1960s, when his band the Metropolitan Sound Company would play downtown clubs, high school dances and outdoor concerts. Stewart said he first became aware of Collins while attending Fremont High School in 1966, when he would jump on an Alameda-Contra Costa Transit bus in East Oakland to go out for parties and dancing. Metropolitan Sound Company was among the bands he'd see.

"He was part of that whole era of young musicians who were making that crossover from blues to R&B," a movement that defined what came to be known as the "Oakland sound" in funk and R&B that drew the attention of artists nationwide, Stewart said. That first band played until the early 1970s, according to Stewart. After that is when Collins embarked on a career as a session drummer playing on albums and live for numerous artists working in and visiting the Bay Area.

Saturday, September 12, 2015

Tanium : Not Far From The Tree

Inspiration ?

Well I guess it's where you find it.

When Forbes called with a story about start up company Tanium, I was focused on the father/son relationship of founders Orion and David Hindawi.

An elaborate image setting them on Treasure Island, with San Francisco behind them was planned out, but to me the most honest image was found in their conference room.

During a staged moment where I asked them to get into an actual discussion, they fell into what I can only describe as "father and son body language", a personal dynamic programmed into the two of them from the very beginning. Two special people who have their own system, I was just thankful they allowed me to see into it for that afternoon.

Read about Orion and David in Forbes Magazine's feature HERE. 

Friday, September 11, 2015

The First Americans / National Geographic

Combing thru a hard drive and I came across this image from our week with Jim Chatters' team up in Seattle for the National Geographic story titled The First Americans. Haunting and almost human, this face of Naya was created by the team over the arc of a week. Lots of images of the process, but this ending image always seemed to inhabit a human quality that never settled in the others.

Monday, April 13, 2015

Again I Formed Whole / Patrick Mahoney

The most compelling story of the year landed on my plate during the first week of 2015.

Patrick Mahoney's story of a bike accident, brain damage and poetry will resonate with anyone who has peaked over the edge of their own mortality. A day of photographic collaboration staged in a reborn Berkeley house yielded so many life lessons I'm not sure how to spell it all out sufficiently, so I'll simply share a poem written by Patrick titled "Heaven".


Where I want to be
until I find out

I’m already there.
This world beyond

is inside the wool
sweater my mother knit,

behind these eyes
my fingertips touch

each morning. I live outside
lands long settled and embrace

minutia—I smell the coffee
ground, then taste it brewed.

I feel the dirt road with my feet
through my black faded Chucks.

The end of the road
goes well beyond sight.

So I turn on tips of toes
and I am breathing deeply—

the air, tasting of oak-moss,
my eyes—still closed.

Read Patrick's story "Again I Formed Whole" written by Kara Peters HERE.

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Game of Thrones / The Fans

A chilly San Francisco evening with beautiful light. We had cameras. We had ipods with audio recording apps.
There to meet the fans of Game of Thrones, a super popular HBO television series I know nothing at all about. And sometimes, of course, it's better that way. :)

This all came together for the story "Inside The Uber Geeky Game Of Thrones Season Five Premiere" for Bloomberg Business Week. Read it all HERE.

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Tonight : Lecture at The Battery Club SF

Eyes Wide Shut : Looking forward to getting behind the gates of The Battery Club tonight at part of Photography Salon VII. I'll be talking about ECHOLILIA and HOME, with copies of HOME for sale.

Here's what they say :

The Photography Salon opens on Thursday, March 19, at 7 p.m. In the salon, successful commercial photographer Timothy Archibald will be showing deeply personal and profound portraits of his autistic son Eli. Collected in the book "Echolilia," the photos show the young boy exploring his environment and trying out sensory experiences that might take him out of his isolated state. Archibald also documents his son’s art and writing projects, which quietly speak to his desire to know and communicate.

Berkeley-based Mimi Plumb will present selections from her wide-ranging photographic oeuvre over several decades with a recurring theme of women and girls. Her documentation of Cesar Chavez and the United Farm Workers in the 1970s is one of the most notable records of that important historic period. An avid horsewoman, she has also perfected the equine portrait, lending as much feeling and pathos to her animal subjects as her human ones.

Almost everyone living in San Francisco has a relationship to the iconic Mission District. Judy Walgren, who heads photography at the San Francisco Chronicle will provide the back story to the paper's stunning and provocative visual series documenting how the Mission District is changing during this boom time.

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Pack 42 Art Merit Badge Tutorial

For Pack 42's Art Merit Badge Night I wanted to create a crash course in living and breathing and eventually solving the issues of contemporary photography.

Getting the kids set up with the classic trio of photographer, art director and digital tech, we all put together the series of photographs highlighted here:

Assignment One : The Photo Bomb
Assigment Two : Role Playing
Assignment Three : The History of Photography / Robert Frank's The Americans


Tuesday, March 17, 2015

It Didn't Look This Good In Real Life

Reluctant dinner of sushi and sugar free soda at the Berkeley Marina.
Kinda messy and trashy, we make this snapshot and's romantic brotherly love in which youth and maturity combined will live forever.

Really, keep in mind, it's only a photograph.

An editor from France drops me a note the next day. She explains that she has been inspired by the work I've done with my children and would like to include this photograph in an anthology. She asks me to write an essay and I do, something about the rituals of dinner time while juggling my role as a parent. She accepts it in a confused way. While editing it all she asks one quick question:

"Who are those people in the beach photograph? Are they strangers?"

Friday, February 27, 2015

Vantage / Medium / HOME

Great piece written by Taylor Glascock on my work for's VANTAGE photography online magazine.

Focusing on life after the publication of ECHOLILIA and introducing the current book HOME, Taylor ties it all together with humor and grace:

In November 2014, Archibald released his latest book, Home, which is a quiet meditation on the dissolution of his marriage. He had been with his wife since age 19. He was living in the garage. Home wasn’t so easy to define.

Square black and white images are displayed side by side to denote presence and absence. Eli makes an appearance in the book, as does his younger brother, Wilson. The children are digging a hole. This hole reappears over and over again. “You try to fill in that hole, but it’s never really the same.”

Read Taylor's piece on HERE.

Buy your copy of HOME from Straylight Press HERE.

Thursday, February 26, 2015

PPGBA Lecture / Special Guest Star

The Best Western Grosvernor rises from a functional neighborhood on the outskirts of the San Francisco Airport like a hotel from another era, another culture. Shades of a bunker that could sustain a hit from a SCUD missile, suffering only blown out windows and keeping it's residents safe. Eli and I approach the space with curious anticipation. I was here to deliver my lecture, he was along for the ride, ideally hoping to also get to drink a Coke.

To say this event was sparsely attended would be generous at best. As always, the show must go on. Great to meet everyone involved in the PPGBA: Paolo Salcido, Julie Olson, Joseph Valenzuela ran the show. Super excited to meet long time inspirator photographer Mark Tucker from Nashville and new pals Icarian Photography from Berkeley.

As often happens at any speaking engagement, I'm always thankful- I learn more from the audience than I'm sure they learn from me. Peace.

Saturday, February 14, 2015

The Creative Family Tree We All Pick From

Bob Dylan gave this speech the other night that is floating around the internet. Totally fascinating view into the creative process, with all the mystery stripped away. He goes forward in detail about how he wrote particular songs and points out his direct influences. The best line, paraphrased here, could apply to any creative process. A solid acknowledgement of the creative family tree that we all are picking from and watering every day we do our work:

These songs didn't come out of thin air. I didn't just make them up out of whole cloth. There was a precedent. I just opened up a different door in a different kind of way.
More good stuff : 

The last thing I thought of was who cared about what song I was writing. I was just writing them. I didn't think I was doing anything different. I thought I was just extending the line. Maybe hard to pin down, but so what? A lot of people are hard to pin down and you’ve just got to bear it.

Just to keep things in perspective, Dylan also devotes at least four paragraphs to directly ridicule his critics and demand clarification as to why they focused on him and let other artists off the hook.
So much for not caring what people think. Why do I bring this up? I think whole thing just reinforces how even the most exalted artists get stung like we all do. Why am I bringing this up? When one has a lecture looming in a matter of days, you look everywhere you can for subject matter. :)


Lecture Coming Up!

Timothy Archibald: Photographing the Family Landscape

Originally finding fascination in “the other,” Archibald's projects later took a turn inward and he has now focused closely on family for the past ten years. He’ll address the successes and failures that come when photographing those to whom access is unlimited and discuss ways to find the path to beginning and completing these projects. He will also share a variety of commercial projects that have sprung off his personal work and discuss the challenges of mixing the two genres. Bring your questions!

Thursday, February 19, 2015 / 7 pm – 9 pm
Location: Best Western Plus Grosvenor Hotel, 380 S. Airport Blvd., S. San Francisco. Tickets and info :

Friday, February 13, 2015

New Gallery / The Cats Of Instagram

What else?

The Cats Of Instagram on

It should be called My Cats On Instagram, but for now, this is what we got.

Enjoy it HERE.

Thursday, February 12, 2015

Long Distance Valentine

Long Distance Valentine, 2/2015

Thursday, February 5, 2015

Timothy Draper / Draper University

Breaking the ice with Timothy Draper for our brief photo shoot was really not hard at all, seeing that both my girlfriend and I went to Draper High School in Schenectady, N.Y. and Timothy was currently running something called Draper University. That, and the shared pun that is often shared when you meet someone with your own name.

Elegantly published in this month's Review On Business Magazine, edited by longtime favorite photo editor Clare Vandermeersch.

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

The New Home School /

Always happy to have a rich story land in my lap to kick off the new year. Photo editors Neil Harris and Maria Lokke of directed me to the home of Samantha and Chris Cook, a family homeschooling their kids in a contemporary way.

Rich visuals and a rich home life, there really was a photograph to be made everywhere we looked.

Out today on HERE.


Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Time Travel Photographs / 1982 and 1985

Top: Me Photographed By My Brother, 1982
Bottom: My Bedroom, 1985

Monday, February 2, 2015

LECTURE: Photographing The Family Landscape


Timothy Archibald / Photographing The Family Landscape
An event hosted by the Professional Photographers of the Greater Bay Area.

Timothy will address the successes and failures that come when photographing those to whom access is unlimited and discuss ways to find the path to beginning and completing these projects. He will also share a variety of commercial projects that have sprung off his personal work and discuss the challenges of mixing the two genres. Bring your questions!

Thursday, February 19, 2015...
Time: 7 pm – 9 pm
Location: Best Western Plus Grosvenor Hotel, 380 S. Airport Blvd., S. San Francisco.
Tickets and more information HERE.

Monday, January 12, 2015

HOME, explained.

This interview originally appeared on the Straylight Press blog, 1/12/2014. 
In an attempt to explain the new book HOME, I interviewed myself:

Q: So, you have a new book out?
A: Yes! HOME, published by Straylight Press up in Ottawa, Canada. $24 bucks for a book and a print!

Q: What’s this book about? Pictures of your home?
A: Well yes and no. There was a chunk of time a few years back where I was living in this home, sleeping in the garage, seeing a psychologist and witnessing the dissolution of my marriage. I was in that relationship for most of my adult life, we had two children and all of this created this tidal shift. I would look at my life, my kids, my home through this new filter- not positive or negative, but clearly changed.

Q: How does that relate to the images?
A: I think it fueled them. There was a feeling of time passing, of children being pulled by gravity and then coming back up again. Seasons changing, holes being dug, things breaking and the world just keeps on turning. None of these things are literally in the photographs, but these are the themes that were on my mind at the time and seem to inform the work.

Q: Straylight is in Ottawa, you are in San Francisco. How did that go?
A: Every book for me is this kind of emotional gut wrenching experience. Usually I don’t really know what these projects are about until I put them all together in book form…and even then they still allude me. Tony Fouhse works at a pace I could rarely keep up with: he cranked out book dummies and edited the book into multiple permutations, he edits with a jackhammer, no waste, no fat, every image needed to have a reason to be there to build and contribute to the feeling and tone of this little story. Half the images got cut from the project right from the start. It’s tight. And much better for it.

Q: Did you guys harmonize?
A: Honestly, I just couldn’t keep up. The thinking that I needed to do to address the book could easily derail a day. Tony would be up early, sending me comments and edits and issues to address and I 
would save them for the evening to try to slow down the process…I just couldn’t think that fast. 

Q: Lots of energy there huh?
A: Yah. He seemed to have a vision for HOME, seemed to know how to make a story of sorts out of it. He created this inner fabric that would hold together….fall apart….and then hold together again. Reminded me of jazz, or like of The Stooges 1970 album “Fun House” : some tight pairs suck you in, then it becomes a bit more abstract, then you have these pairs again, the catchy hooks, sucking you in. In the end I loved what the book became, and the title HOME has all the mixed emotions that the work has.

Q: Why Straylight for this project?
A: Well Straylight has had these kind of harsh books- very anchored in the real : Live Through This, Christina Riley’s book Back To Me, and  they have a big Scot Sothern book coming out. I mean badass artists and topics. I’m like this suburban soccer-dad type of guy, so I thought it would be ironic to have them put out this book: it’s called HOME, it’s got two kids hugging in it, it even came out during the holidays.

Q: So what is the payoff for you with these books?
A: Well really at some point you let these things go out into the world and you try to see what comes from it. My first book “Sex Machines: Photographs and Interviews” was clearly an attempt by me to get attention: a rich subject matter that had the shock of the new to it, and then the words to try to humanize it all. But it was this kind of anthropological project, and in the end the world seemed to simply find it either repulsive or humorous. “ECHOLILIA” came after that, and that had the hot topic of autism behind it, so it almost ended up being like…some big U2 anthem song or something for a while. Then this book, HOME, in the way it began and then in the look and feel of the final  book, is like an underground indy music album ---some people will understand it, some will be confused by it, some will get the secrets that may be in there, and others may project their own story into it. And now, after a month of it being out, that seems to be exactly what is happening. And really I couldn’t be happier.

Photograph of TA by Jen Siska, 2014.

Thursday, January 8, 2015

On Location at Amos Studios

One of my favorite images from our shoot for the January 2015 issue of Family Circle magazine.

Props, wardrobe and production by Shannon Amos, shot on location in Amos Studios.

Sometimes we can really hit that note of saying as much as we can with as little as we can.