Photos – Commentary

Old lady standingOld Lady Standing (Portraits)

I have begun research on towns in southern Vermont and northern Massachusetts near the Vermont border. Today I drove to the tiny town of Heath, which is very hard to find. I was about to photograph and old house and barn when a man came out to the mail box. I asked him if it was OK. “I don’t live here. You’ll have to see the lady.” I followed him in and met the old lady. “Can I take your photo,” I asked” She said shed have to comb her hair. “No, please, leave it as it is.”

Town Dump - Clyde - rTown Dump (Other Photos)

I want to tell you about Clyde in the dump photo. He is a character. He rarely speaks other than maybe a grunt. The other day after it had snowed, I was struggling to lift a huge black plastic bag of trash to empty  it in the dump area. There was a large area of snow left by the plow that I had to go over with the bag while trying not to slip. Clyde stood there silently watching me struggle. Finally, even he saw I needed help and reached over with one hand to grab the bag. That’s the first kind thing I’d seen him do in over a year.

One day, many months ago, I saw a different man there. He was smiling, talkative and even helped me empty my car. We talked about trivia and I left smiling. What a change.

I hope that my photo captures Clyde.


Heeseop Youn


Heeseop Youn (Black and White)

The Portrait of Heeseop Youn was taken in her apartment just as she walked towards the window on a cloudy day and the soft light washed across her face.


Ruth Angela - rRuth Angela (Portraits)

I met a pretty girl today in Brattleboro as I was taking photos of the town. She worked in a non profit building where they are promoting the parade of the heifers, which happens in June. I asked her if I could take her picture. She said yes and moved into the light to I could get a better shot. This is part of my next book on towns along the southern Vermont border. I like to talk to lots of people to get a feel for the town.


Michael Dougherty (Black and White)

The portrait of Michael Dougherty was taken as he was talking to me in my living room. Suddenly I saw the sun light come shining through his beard.

Doug Wilson (Portraits)

Doug Wilson, Unitarian Minister, is also a longtime director of the Rowe Conference Center in Rowe, Massachusetts


Nan Williams (Portraits)

I think it one of my best of its kind. It is so alive. The woman is 85 and is a writer and historian by the name of Nan Williams.

Ernie Thompson - cropped - rErnie Thompson (Portraits)

I don’t know about Ernie yet. I’m having lunch with him in a few days.

He came up to me on the street in Bennington as I was photographing the catamount. I told him I was looking for someone who knew and loved Bennington. He recommended the head of the Better Bennington Society, whose office was close by. Ernie said he loved Bennington and had lived there all his life. (He had not visited Ireland yet!) As I was walking back to my car after going to the Better Bennington Corporation, he was parking his car nearby and walked over to ask if I had made an appointment. I had, but then I said why didn’t I meet with him.