Cross This River

Cross this river.

I’m sitting on so many drafts of posts it’s getting kind of silly. My phone is full of voice notes, my notebook full of scribbles and sketches, my brain full of ideas.

The truth is, I started writing this post exactly a week ago. I forget where I was at the time, all I know is that right now I’m laying in a bed in Hudson, MA, typing this out on my Kindle Fire (which I had to root and side-load the WordPress app onto, among other things), while eating a tiny sandwich. In the time between, I flew to Las Vegas, photographed an amazing model, drove to Los Angeles, photographed the same amazing model (and a bunch of other stuff), hung out with my brother, got invited to Palm Springs for New Years, and flew the redeye back into Boston.

The Darkened Skies V
The Darkened Skies V

I should probably be filling this post with all kinds of insights onto the valuable lessons I learned on this foray. Things like being amazed at how sometimes age has nothing to do with maturity (in both directions), that my brother and I continue to discover things in common (we both continually push ourselves, trying to find our own breaking points [neither of us have]), and that I might actually like Santa Monica despite it’s association with Los Angeles. Really though, I not in much of a recapping mood.

The quickest way to get over a woman is to climb on top of another. – Marc Mercury
Some things we don’t agree on.

My Tumblr pages have been keeping up lot of the regular day to day stuff. My current host hasn’t upgraded the PHP or MySQL on this webserver, so I can’t upgrade to WordPress 3.3 yet, which is driving me crazy since it has Tumblr integration. That is actually something I’m really looking forward to and is one more step in aggregating all the outlets named in the last post back here to //dropslash.


I’m, of course, working on a 2011 recap post. It has been a hell of a year, so expect that to be full of all kind of fun lists and anecdotes and recaps. There is still some writing to finish in the meantime. I’m also working on multiple photo sets, including the aforementioned Vegas and LA shoots. I’ve also been trying to keep up with the December Bohemea Photo Challenge. I’m a little behind because of travel, but I’m working on getting caught up and filling in the gaps. That gallery is below.

Project: BoChallenge – December
[flickr-gallery mode=”photoset” photoset=”72157628242239117″]

Angel, angel, what have I done
I’ve faced the quakes, the wind, the fire
I’ve conquered country, crown and throne
Why can’t I cross this river?

And the worst part is…

This update is really just a collection of half-written posts and notes from the past week or so. It happens from time to time. I just get too busy to put together anything of significant length, add photos, etc.

BTSOE 2011: Heather Conlin

And now.

It’s been a hell of a weekend. Well, it’s been more than that. It’s been surreal, strange, heartbreaking, exhilarating, disappointing, and everything in between. I’m standing on a precipice that represents a great many things. My professional career is headed to a place I didn’t anticipate. Ok, that’s not totally true. I’m well aware of my skillset. I know how to use the tools I have and I certainly know how to adapt and pick up more. There is very little that is beyond me, or that escapes me. When I made the decision to alter my career path I knew that it would just take hard work to get to where I wanted it to be. I knew what I had to do, the pieces that were in play. It’s really just a matter of motivation. As a good friend told me recently “I don’t know what it is about you, it’s like you’re a weird nexus of opportunity. It comes looking for you, it finds you and it’s like you don’t even have to try.” I’ve been thinking about that a lot recently. I suppose in a way it is true, but it is also because I leave myself open to those possibilities. I don’t always capitalize on them. I don’t grind everyone down, tooth and nail, to wring every possible outcome out of them, I kind of just make myself available and see what happens.


In the six months or so though, I stopped doing that a bit. Especially with people. I stopped making myself so available. I stopped just “seeing what happens” and devoted myself to going after what it is I really wanted. It was a huge shift in how I approach people. I let my guard down, gave up my armor, and showed someone who I really was underneath all that. Unfortunately, I now stand alone without that armor. I’ve been told I’m not allowed to put it back on. That I can’t live life like that. I’m not so sure. It’s devastation and reform, but every time you have to rebuild, you just become more and more of a shell of what you had when you started. It’s extra-ordinarily demotivating.



The truth of the matter is, I’ve been a photographer for as long as I can remember. My grandfather, and his daughter, my mother, were and are passionate about photography and it’s role in our lives. I grew up around cameras. As I got older, I was always the person in my circle of friends with a camera. I used to keep Kodak disposables everywhere, always ready to capture our antics. I took photography courses in high school and learned the basics of not just photography, but also how to use a dark room to process film.

The first time things really changed though, was in 2001. I bought my first digital camera, an Olympus Camedia C-700. Though archaic by today’s standards, it opened up a whole new world for me. A couple years earlier, I’d started using Adobe Photoshop 5.5 to create graphics for my websites and to mess around with scanned photos. This new ability to have an all digital workflow drastically changed how I approached photography and the artistry photographic manipulation. From that point on, I was never without a digital camera.

This convergence of passions; photography, computers, technology, and creativity started to lead me into totally new directions. The power of these combined things enabled me to truly immerse myself in the mediums and really explore possibilities.

Los Angeles


It’s a cold night in Hollywood, for the second night in a row. I can see my own breath, but then again that may be due in no small part to the hot grande Pike w/ vanilla I’m drinking right now. I’m sitting outside in the West Hollywood Gateway Plaza. There is a waterfall behind me and it reminds me of Mexico so many months ago. My netbook clock says it’s 9 hours ahead of the correct time, which makes me realize I haven’t opened it since Paris. This city, Los Angeles, seems to never change. Neither do the people in it. I was discussing with my brother how New York City is always changing and if you can’t keep pace, it will mercilessly chew you up and spit you out. NYC will not wait for you, ever. Los Angeles never seems to change. It’s like a byproduct of the insincerity that underscores the people who live here. Millions of people forced to cling to fake lives, just to survive. No wonder it, or they, will never change.

I was standing outside Angels & Kings a few nights ago and I witnessed the following scene.

A guy grabs a girl by the shoulders and looks right at her. “No, really, I think you are great.” He then turned to his friend standing next to him and said “Psstt, not really, I fucking hate her.” He then looked back to the girl and said “That is LA. Here’s what New York is like’” Same motions, grabbing her by the shoulders, looking into her eyes, and saying “I really fucking hate you.”

I laughed.

Steve Jobs. That is a post for another time. His death has affected me much more than I thought it would.

There is lots more going on, but that’s all I have time for at the moment.