cole thompson photography

 Issue 52      

August 31, 2012   


John Holland Memorial

(John Holland Memorial - Convict Lake, CA - 2012) 


The Story Behind the Image

Restoration Hardware

Moshe Safdie



Dear Cole,

A few weeks ago I helped spread the ashes of an old friend in the mountains.  He was my teacher in high school, I babysat his children, he was a wonderful artist, he was my mentor, we did business together and most importantly...he was my friend.  


We remembered him at one of his favorite places; Virginia Lakes, California. While there I created the above image which I dedicate to my friend, John Holland.



P.S.  Here is a video I found fascinating and beautiful.  It's entitled Murmuration.


The Story Behind the Image

Two Kimonos

(Two Kimonos - Tokyo, Japan - 2007)

The Japanese are almost too polite for good photography.


I was visiting my son in Tokyo when I found this crowded market that I wanted to photograph. I was going for an "Angel Gabriel" look where I would find a willing subject to stand still for a 30 second exposure, and as the crowds bustled past they would create ghostly remnants. Sounds simple enough, right? 


But as I began setting up my tripod and camera something curious happened.  Everyone cleared away so that the marketplace was almost empty. They were being polite and moving out of my shot!


Now the challenge was to get them back into the shot.  As long as my camera was there, they stayed out of the scene. I tried waiting, I tried turning my back and talking to my son, I tried talking on the phone...nothing seemed to work.


Finally I walked away, leaving my equipment in place and hoping people would return. Slowly people trickled back and I set about to find a willing subject. 


And a subject did appear, walking towards me were two girls in Kimonos.  I approached them and using sign language, asked if I could take their picture.  I was able to communicate that it would be a 30 second exposure and they smiled and shook their heads in agreement.


I was all set, I had a subject, people had finally moved back into the market and I was ready to go! I began the long exposure and counted out loud: one...two...three...four...five...and with each count the girl's heads bobbed up and down! 


With a bit more sign language I was able convey that they needed to stand perfectly still and I created the image above.  This image will always remind me of that wonderful trip and how very different their society is from ours.






Restoration Hardware

Restoration Hardware Screenshot 2

(Restoration Hardware Web Site)


Restoration Hardware is one of the fastest growing and most innovative luxury brands in the home furnishings marketplace. They offer the finest historical designs including updated classics and reproductions. For example, I recently restored a 1909 farmhouse and turned to them for period hardware.


Recently they expanded their Wall Decor line to include photography, including several images from my Grain Silo series.  



Moshe Safdie No. 1

Moshe Safdie No 2

(Moshe Safdie No. 1 - Kansas City, MO - 2012) 



While travelling through Kansas City recently, my eye was drawn to the new Kaufman Center for the Performing Arts. It was designed by Moshe Safdie and the architecture is stunning!


I had to stop and photograph it, even in the oppressive 106 degree heat.


View my new images.


Moshe Safdie No. 3

 (Moshe Safdie No. 2 - Kansas City, MO - 2012) 


  Moshe Safdie No 3

 (Moshe Safdie No. 2 - Kansas City, MO - 2012) 








lenswork issue 102 cover

(LensWork Issue No. 102, Sept/Oct 2012)

*  LensWork issue #102 will feature my portfolio "Death Valley: Where Time Stands Still." You can preview the issue here.
*  The June/July issue of "Schwarzweiss" magazine (the LensWork of Germany) featured my portfolio "The Fountainhead."  


*  121 Clicks is featuring an article I've written entitled "The Secret to Creating a Great Image." You can read the article here

*  The NEWS de Cordoba featured two of my images; "Stonehenge" and "Old Wardour Castle." This is the official publication for the Photographic Association of Cordoba, Spain.  


* The September 2012 issue of Shutterbug Magazine reviews my blog and comments on my art.  You can read the review here.


*  The Korean style magazine "G Colon" has featured two of my images in their special Black and White issue: "Harbinger No. 1" and "Smokestack and Clouds" which was featured on the front cover.

G Colon Cover





Gull and Moon

(Gull and Moon - Anaheim, CA - 1970)


The winner of this months drawing is Kimberly Chiaris who will receive a copy of "Why Photographs Work" by George Barr.  


The next drawing will be for the signed print "Gull and Moon."  I created this when I was 17 years old.


For those of you new to my newsletter drawings, to enter simply email me at and put "Gull and Moon" in the subject line.  


Of course if you'd like to also say hello, I'd love to hear from you!


About Cole Thompson Photography

Community of Christ Temple Detail No 1

(Community of Christ Temple Detail Detail No. 1 - Independence, MO - 2012)




Phone:      970-218-9649



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