Intro

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Phoot Camp 2012 Roster

Thirty-three super creative self portraits submitted to Pictory’s annual creative retreat for photographers.

So hard to believe that I’m planning the fourth Phoot Camp. What started as an impromptu stay at a state park with a crew of talented emerging photographers I’d met through JPG Magazine has turned into so much more over the years. This event takes up significant space in our hearts and minds now. People really put effort into the ideas and the relationships. It is wonderfully rewarding to watch!

And, it’s hard to believe, but we’ve managed to rent out a summer camp in upstate NY this year. It may just be the first Phoot Camp where every person has a real bed to sleep on and gets enough to eat!

The downside to this progress is that now I receive way more applications than I can accept. Of the hundreds of applications this year, there were easily sixty people who would have been perfect fits for the ten to fifteen spots available for new campers. It’s really important to me to keep the camps small so that everyone gets to know each other well — so this makes the decision process agonizing.

How can I solve this problem of excluding amazing people while sticking to my vision for the camps? I’m not sure. But I have a few ideas, like potentially starting a series of workshops and art parties in the major Phoot cities. Stay tuned at @phootcamp, and be sure to drop us a line if you have ideas.

Lastly, huge thanks to our main sponsor Virb.com for helping us make it happen again this year. Virb.com is one of the easiest ways to build your own website. Their simplified platform allows you to easily create unlimited pages, customize themes, add your own domain name, connect your Instagram photos, and so much more. We all use it, we all love it.

Published May 16, 2012

Intro/Design Laura Brunow Miner

Sponsored by Virb

one
Garrett Cornelison

Garrett Cornelison

In addition to 10 years of shooting experience and a trunk full of props that would make Carrot Top jealous, I’d bring with me the passion of a warrior and the excitement of a boy on a trampoline. (I also manage a custom screen-printing shop so I could make sure everyone at camp would be decked out in some fly Phoot gear.) I work as a designer and musician and shoot photos and video with any time that’s left. Photography is wonderful, but collaborating is even better. I have a community spirit and love to team up with other artists to make amazing images, not only behind the camera but in front of it as well. I would also be very excited about capturing video during the weekend which I’m having a blast doing lately.

I want my life story to be about telling stories.

I want photography to continue to take me around the world, to open my eyes wider. I want photography to teach me something I didn’t already know and then introduce me to my next best friend.

I think Phoot Camp sounds like heaven on Earth. Weird, creative, and inspiring people locked in a room with their cameras for 4 days?! Sign me up.

Photographer: Garrett Cornelison
two
Dan Busta

Dan Busta

I always bring a sense of adventure, curiosity, and excitement to Phoot. However, what I would like to bring to Phoot this year is my honest sense of community. I’d like to spend this year bringing everyone together. One of the best parts of Phoot are the friendships grow together year after year and I feel like if we all work hard to share our time at Phoot together we could all become better friends, I’d really like to work on making that more of a reality in 2012. My favorite Phoot was the first event. I felt like we all really formed a great group that year and I would like to bring that sense of community into this year’s event. I’d like to do that by working on a special project that would encapsulate the group in a interesting way. I’m no stranger to thinking outside the box or frame and I have a feeling this would be more than a collection of portraits.

Photographer: Dan Busta
three
Nina Westervelt

Nina Westervelt

By day I’m a runway photographer who documents backstage fashion in NYC and Paris, and I strive to make this realm more accessible to my viewers by showing the calm but vibrant side of glamour.

Come night, I coerce my friends to work with me in perfecting the human pyramid, my group-photo weakness. Phoot Camp would be the ideal environment to cultivate my largest pyramid yet!

Being chosen as camper would be the equivalent of all the world’s confetti being dumped on me at once. And I love confetti!

My life is one giant photo album, and I yearn to create a new chapter with the unforgettable experiences Phoot Camp offers. I thrive in situations where the work I create can be pure, sincere and spontaneous, but also where I can continue to learn and grow with new friends.

I am a lover of all things film. I have to buy anything I see with an owl or wolf on it. I collect black and white postcards. I obsessively poke the fire all night when camping, but I can never start the fire. I live for tubing in rivers, jukeboxes, southern BBQ, iced coffee, hula hooping, and sparklers (of which I have a large supply, wink wink).

Photographer: Nina Westervelt

four
Ike Edeani

Ike Edeani

Nothing short of magic happens when creative people get together, and nowhere is that more evident than at Phoot Camp.

As a designer and former architect, I’ve found that certain qualities influence my photography, among them an understanding of space, proportion, color, composition, and a healthy amount of emotion. I intend to bring this perspective in my collaborations with other Campers.

As a photographer, I feel I haven’t even begun to scratch the surface of my potential to create, and this is an incredible opportunity to do so with folks whose work I’ve admired for a long time. Phoot Camp might as well be the Super Bowl.

Photographer: Ike Edeani
five
Gabriela Herman

Gabriela Herman

Last year, I was honored to be welcomed into the Phoot community, which I can now call my own. Every relationship that began at Phoot has since exponentially grown stronger, and that simple fact means that, no question, this year’s Phoot Camp will top the last. I will do everything this year to show that love to the new faces and help our Phoot family grow.

I never got to go to sleep away camp. I was always so jealous of my friends who would return from the summer having learned how to shave their legs and make out with boys. That’s my incentive to turn this Phoot Camp into the wildest sleepway camp experience I never had. I am also highly skilled at making friendship bracelets, and I did, in fact, grow up spending my summers on the top bunk. Plus, I am ready to take an ordinary event, say riding an exercise bike, and bring it to that next level where the whole group is engaged in what only can be described as ‘phooters gone wild.’

I have been looking forward to go back to Phoot all year. Bring it on!

Photographer: Gabriela Herman
six
Beto Ruiz Alonso

Beto Ruiz Alonso

Phoot Camp changed my life. To be in Marfa with 34 amazing talents that shared my passions and interests was mind-blowing.

Since then, I’ve confirmed that the bond forged over just three days was not only real, but surprisingly strong. I now count some of these nuts among my closest friends and even though we’re thousands of miles apart, we talk almost daily. I’m forever grateful to Phoot Camp for this.

I’d love to come back. I bring generosity, great disposition and a knack for bringing people together. Last year my visits to NYC, LA and SF spawned local Phoot reunions and in the case of Portland, reunited campers for the first time since last year’s event. I love to meet new people. To learn and have fun together and build lasting relationships.

After Phoot, I learned to be more open to opportunities. To say “yes” more often than “no”, and to dream more. My first new year’s resolution in December 2010 was “Apply to Phoot Camp (and get in).” I put all my will into that submission and my dream came true. Time flies and we’ll be old in no time, we need to live our lives now, to the fullest. Bet it all on your dreams and don’t be afraid of the outcome. Dreaming is the important part.

My self-portrait? Let’s say I find my fellow phootcampers’ work very inspiring and I have a clear favorite from last year’s applications.

Photographer: Beto Ruiz Alonso
seven
Liz Devine

Liz Devine

An organized creative retreat fueled by chaos and photography—with all of your new best friends. This is Phoot Camp. Shoot, laugh, explore, discover, share, drink, dress up, repeat. I promise to be 100% committed to these tasks and to be ready for whatever else Phoot throws my way. There is nothing I won’t do to maximize the potential of my experience at Phoot, and help everyone else achieve the same.

I haven’t been able to stop thinking about Phoot Camp since I received my acceptance email last year. I can say with utter confidence that it has changed my life, and I can’t imagine anything better then spending another week with such an amazing group of photographers in New York. I’m packed and ready, so bring on the Phoot shenanigans, I’m all in!

Photographer: Liz Devine
eight
Ryan Schude

Ryan Schude

The last 3 Phoot Camps I have done my best to put together some sort of group photo with everyone involved. Considering we are only there for a few days and every moment is a precious opportunity for people to get the most out of the experience, I try and get it done as quickly and painlessly as possible. My goal this year would be to streamline the process even further and get some feedback from campers beforehand on how to attain maximum pleasure throughout. We would treat the shoot as a workshop where we can all come together for multiple purposes tailored to whichever aspect you are most interested in. The location this year should also prove to be ideal for the equally, if not more important part of camp, which is hanging out. Campfires, kumbaya, and cutting a rug remain on the top of the priority list; with forest forts and skinny dipping a close runner up.

Photographer: Ryan Schude
nine
Steph Goralnick

Steph Goralnick

I feel so lucky to have been part of Phoot Camp in the past, and am excited for the possibility to continue the tradition of infusing bear-related thematic elements into the event’s collective history.

I am a highly adaptable creature, and plan to bring along my ravenous appetite for creation and collaboration. As an upstate New York native, my familiarity with woodland environments and ability to communicate with the local wildlife will come in handy. Though comfortable running with a pack, I am not afraid to add my own individual roar to the mix. Always on the prowl for creative pursuits that satiate my hunger for design and photography, I come bearing a picnic basketful of ideas for inspiring my fellow forest creatures.

Photographer: Steph Goralnick
ten
Naomi Harris

Naomi Harris

Maple syrup. Pure and simple. I’m a Canadian, happen to have 27 cans of the nectar of the gods and you can’t say you’ve ever really had bacon cooked in a campfire until it’s been doused in the sweet, sweet stuff. And we Canadians know camping, it’s in our blood just like hockey and beer. So if we’re attacked by a bear in the woods I’ll be the first to shout: “If it’s black fight back, if it’s brown fall down” saving us all.

And I also happen to know a thing or two about photography and enjoy a little friendly banter amongst friends.

Photographer: Naomi Harris
eleven
Matthew Mahon

Matthew Mahon

So why does Phoot Camp need me? Why am I am asset? What will I do to make this the best Phoot Camp ever? Those are all excellent questions, especially as this wonderful vision has grown into a very high level creative community. Upon arriving at Phoot 2011 in Marfa, I had an idea of what to expect, but it turned out to be one of the most enjoyable creative groups of people I have ever had the pleasure of being around. It so wonderfully exceeded all of my expectations that I thought to myself, “There is a Santa Claus and her name is Laura!” I have had a very enjoyable career in photography, but never have I had more fun photographically. Phoot Camp reminded me why I love photography, a true photographic celebration like I have never experienced. Phoot needs me because I understand its community and its photographic vision, hence I will do everything in my creative power to make 2012 the best Phoot EVER! I am a Phoot Camper!

Photographer: Matthew Mahon
twelve
William Wilkinson

William Wilkinson

I make crazy 3D GIFs on film. That’s what I’ve been into this year. I share them exclusively on my reasonably popular Tumblr since there aren’t many places that support (or have an audience for) animated GIFs like Tumblr.

I shoot with a Nishika N9000 which is a failed four lens film camera from the 1980 that can shoot from four perspectives at the same moment. It is a very primitive camera with no focus and only two aperture modes. It takes a lot of work to produce a good image from this camera, you have to be thinking in terms of what will create the most interesting depth, you have to consider your foreground, subject, and background.

About myself: I am a 21-year old Canadian designer. I design for clients and for myself. I made the popular Everyday for iPhone app, a photography app for daily self portraits, based on Noah Kalina’s Everyday series. It is my side project outside of my day job as a designer for MetaLab.

I’m totally cool, I take crazy photos, my Canadian blood can take the woods: what’s not to like?

Photographer: William Wilkinson
thirteen
Chad Nicholson

Chad Nicholson

I’m at the point in my creative career where I think most things I make are mediocre but I know that quality lies in my depths.

I can help others; and I do help, a lot. I can improve most things that interest me. I’d like to make it known early on during Phoot that I can help organize photo taking, specifically any group photos or projects. I document. I document the heck out of things when I have my camera, I want to continue snapping away when no one else is. I search for that moment that hasn’t been captured before and store a memory for everyone involved. I create memories. I capture them in the wide, weird, style that lets people know that something special happened there. I want to continue doing that with Phoot.

I am also applying for selfish reasons; I love Phoot for what it does to me, how it reminds me how to make something unique within a group, puts me within a community I trust and care about, sparks my creativity, makes me see the beauty in all people, and keeps me open, alive, and listening.

Phoot Camp motivates me and I know that I motivate in return; I’m going to be making a documentary while riding a horse for 400 miles across Texas because of Phoot. Phoot has become a family and I will celebrate until the break of dawn with every member of that family.

Phoot Camp is my creative lifesaver.

Photographer: Chad Nicholson
fourteen
Mark Lobo

Mark Lobo

I’m thinking back now on all the incredible experiences that have really made the last two Phoot Camps the highlights of the year for me. I would imagine that to help make this year’s event the best Phoot Camp yet, it would be essential to combine a few key elements from previous years into one unforgettable Phoot Camp adventure. I’m still sorting out the details, but know that this would involve an RV that would fit about 30-40 people, lots of scenic driving (perhaps near an endless white desert), some Tyvek suits and of course, a pool full of rubber duckies. I’m sure I can help organise this. BTW, I’ve found a place that sells Tyvek suits for as low as $2.09 (AUD).

Phoot Camp has always been all about the people for me, and although Tyvek suits and rubber duckies definitely played their part, it’s the diverse community of creatives that have really made the Phoot Camp experience what it is. To add to this group dynamic, I will be bringing my youthful optimism and curiosity, along with anything else I can get through Australian baggage security. I know that Phoot Camp 2012 will bring together a great mix of big hearts and creative personalities and I would love to be one of these people.

Photographer: Mark Lobo
fifteen
Michelle Alexis Newman

Michelle Alexis Newman

The setting is Phoot Camp, the year 1981. It’s the last day before everyone goes back to the real world, but there’s still a summer’s worth of unfinished business to resolve. There will be a dangerous waterfall rescue, love triangles, misfits, cool kids, and talking vegetable cans. With resolution, of course, at the big talent show at the end of the day.

Photographer: Michelle Alexis Newman
sixteen
David Todd

David Todd

Hi Laura!

So sorry I missed everyone in Marfa last year, but if you so kindly accept me again I promise to bring my new tumor-free spine, swap crazy pain killer induced photo hallucination stories around the campfire, and volunteer as a free scar model. Talk about second chances! I’ve been waiting a whole year for Phoot Camp to come around again.

What I really hope to bring this year though is a spark for conversation about the future of photography. I’m still a conceptual photo theorist nut - but don’t worry, I’m certainly not a walking recitation of Barthes, Benjamin, or Berger. What drives me is the desire for a deeper understanding of Photography with a capital P. That is to say, the greater meaning of photography, inclusive of all the many forms from family snapshots to commercial advertising to journalism to fine art and everything in between and beyond. Photography, I believe, is one of if not the most elastic forms of visual expression the world has ever known.

As the last generation to be “born on film,” (my phrase) having grown up recognizing the value of both analog and digital technologies, while experiencing the turnover first-hand, who better is equipped to answer the pressing question, “what is photography today?” Eventually we will come to define the medium in our own terms. We won’t always agree, but let’s be honest, in the mean time what could possibly be sexier than a little photog pillow talk?

Say Cheese,

Dave

Photographer: David Todd
seventeen
Michael O'Neal

Michael O’Neal

The whole notion of Phoot was an experiment, place a bunch of photo-loving strangers together for a weekend and see what transpires. I had this same feeling of experimentation while creating this image. Recently, I met a bubble wrangler at a party, he was incasing children in giant bubbles. I shot a few images and loved the way portraits looked through the thin layer of soapy film. I called him up, and the next thing you know, I’m standing inside a bubble. Incasing Phooters in giant bubbles seems like a fun summer camp activity, one of many ideas that I will try to bring to life for Phoot 2012. For me, it’s all about collaborating and trying out new things. And in my opinion, there is no better venue than Phoot for this kind of experimentation and personal growth.

Photographer: Michael O'Neal
eighteen
Henry Busby

Henry Busby

p.s. I cook a mean Southern breakfast.

My first real experience as a storyteller was shooting a documentary about teenagers in small-town Alabama. For five months, I drove down the Alabama highways twice a week never knowing what I’d find each trip. For me, this was a foundational experience that’s touched all the work I do.

Life in Alabama made me the artist I am now. It’s taught me the art of a patient eye and an open ear. I learned light in dancing patches of gold peaking through oaks. My color theory didn’t come off a wheel; it was hiding in the kudzu. Storytelling is not a chapter in a book; it’s the weight of an old man’s words.

Although I still work as a cinematographer and painter, photography has taken me down a path I couldn’t imagine. Phoot Camp has been a constant source of inspiration. It would be an honor to stand alongside the photo giants that inspire me everyday. There’s a piece of me in every project I do, and that’s the wonderful thing about photography. It’s where I intersect with you. I may be telling your story, but inevitably, I’m telling my own. I don’t just shoot because I love it. I shoot because I love you too.

p.s. I cook a mean southern breakfast…

Photographer: Henry Busby
nineteen
Daniel Seung Lee

Daniel Seung Lee

My past two years at Phoot Camp have been truly life changing and unforgettably awetastic (new word!). Making this year the best Phoot Camp ever will prove to be challenging but I know it will possible with the powers of Phoot! (so cheesy, but oh so true). First off, I’m really excited about this year’s location because of all the nature that surrounds the area. My work has been heavily focused on the natural beauty of the world and given the great opportunity to return to this year’s Phoot Camp, I would be able to expand current projects and create new ones. Another one of my goals would be to top my group portrait from last year. Also, I’ve already been bullied about making sure the famous cow skull makes it to New York in June to crown the next camper with the best self portrait; lets not deprive the rest of the campers of this completely haphazard, bootlegged “tradition.” If that wasn’t enough, I’m also pretty damn good at making s’mores and singing “Kumbaya.”

Photographer: Daniel Seung Lee
twenty
Paul Octavious

Paul Octavious

I try to find the extraordinary and special in the ordinary. It helps me to create new work and is an attribute I would love to share with others at Phoot Camp 2012. Collaboration is king. You’d be surprised at what amazing group projects start to manifest themselves over s’mores and tecate.

Photographer: Paul Octavious
twenty-one
Anjali Pinto

Anjali Pinto

If I were lucky enough to attend Phoot Camp 2012, I would only be able to contribute a small fraction to a jumbo bucket of awesome. One person could never single-handedly make this year’s camp the best ever because it’s the mix of personalities that makes it what it is!

The heart of the experience for me was being inspired. After Phoot 2011, I came back to Chicago with a new way of seeing photography. I felt as though all restrictions on what I could or should be as a photographer were lifted. I suddenly could make any type of picture without concern. I’m no longer just a photojournalist or just a food photographer — I’m a woman with cameras that loves making images of the world around me.

If selected to be a participant, I will contribute to making Phoot 2012 the best ever with camp-ready rice krispie treats, spontaneous cartwheels, laser dance moves and infectious positivity.

Photographer: Anjali Pinto
twenty-two
Lauren Randolph

Lauren Randolph

I can only expect my third year at Phoot Camp to be better than my first and second, because every year has been better than the last. It’s not what I can bring to the camp by myself, it’s how everyone who attends feeds off each other’s excitement to create a bond that keeps us motivated and connected all year long. The beautiful work that is produced during our retreat together is just the result of the energy that gets shared over our love for photography, our willingness to help, and our passion for making things – but what is most important is that we all have so much fun doing it. Plus, I went to summer camp for years as a kid, and have definitely never felt old enough not to always want to go again.

Photographer: Lauren Randolph
twenty-three
Adrienne Pitts

Adrienne Pitts

Hi - my name is Adrienne. I’m a magazine art director (who used to be a photographer) living in London. I’m originally from New Zealand, and sometimes my accent slips and I do sound a little like Bret and Jemaine from Flight of the Conchords. So I guess that might be the first thing I can offer - to make people laugh…

I’ve been keeping up with Phoot Camp and the work that has come out of it, and it’s been something I’ve wanted to do for a long time now. I have this complete and utter passion for photography, and I really love sharing that with other people. It’s hard to articulate it without sounding overwhelmingly cheesy, but let’s just say I love documenting the world around me, and the people in it. Hopefully by having someone from little old New Zealand there, I can bring a lot of enthusiasm to the group, and maybe a slightly different perspective as well…

I make a pretty mean fettucine carbonara. I also really like knitting, but that’s hardly a group activity…

Basically — it’d be enthusiasm, funtimes, a willingness to collaborate and learn and be inspired — that’s what I’d like, and hopefully, that’s what you’d get with me!

Photographer: Adrienne Pitts
twenty-four
Matt Nuzzaco

Matt Nuzzaco

If I were to attend Phoot Camp this year I would be bringing several things to the table. I’m a humble, caring person with a bit of contrarian stirred into the mix. I’m not a professional photographer but feel as if photography is beyond just a hobby… it’s a way of life for me.

I shoot mainly film, love the process and want to teach other people the things I’ve learned. Being a Phoot Camp alum I can offer some perspective and vouch for the significance of the experience. I’m not quite sure how I’d incorporate my film experience with others at the camp but the challenge adds to the appeal of wanting to attend this year. At the end of the day I want to be bring the quiet contemplation of photography to the camp and share the pure joy of making something that speaks to who you are as a person. Each photograph we make is a little tangible piece of ourselves that can be shared with the world.

Photographer: Matt Nuzzaco
twenty-five
Tyler Sharp

Tyler Sharp

Last year’s Phoot Camp in Marfa changed my life.

Never have I become so genuinely connected with so many people, in such a short amount of time. I honestly feel like I was gifted with 34 new best friends, all of whom I could call if I was in a jam, or needed a place to stay.

Many people have asked me to describe Phoot Camp, and I have tried many times, but it isn’t that simple. Phoot Camp is hard to explain. It is a phenomenon.

Last year was my Phoot maiden voyage. I went in wide-eyed and enthusiastic, eager to meet all the people I had read so much about, and do what I could to make sure everyone had a good time in my home state of Texas. But this year is in a place I have never been, and I would be able to step back, and observe more. The individual stories and talents of everyone is what makes it interesting, and my goal would be to film as much of this as I could.

If I am invited back Phoot Camp, I plan to do my best in telling some of these individual stories. By doing interviews, and asking lots of questions, I aim to find out what Phoot means to everyone. It is not so much that Phoot Camp needs to be explained, or categorized, but at least it could be more fully understood.

Phoot is camaraderie. Phoot is creativity. Phoot is family.

Photographer: Tyler Sharp
twenty-six
Neil Berrett

Neil Berrett

I’m a great jumper.

Phoot Camp 2011 changed my life. I’m serious. A fantastic group of very talented people welcomed me into the open arms of adventure and wonder. It spurred a new cycle of positivity, creativity and exploration in my life. I’d love to share the endless zaniness, the “I have an idea” or “Try this” again with more photo campers, old and new.

If accepted, I’ll document a portrait series of the Phoot Campers, and the people we encounter, probing into people’s realities and ideas of the future, complete with an exhibition-ready print. I’ll drive out to Woodstock from Oakland, Calif. and bring my best jumping legs, ready for adventure.

Photographer: Neil Berrett
twenty-seven
Cody Bratt

Cody Bratt

When I heard Kevin Meredith had a scheduling conflict with Phoot this year, I realized his infamous Speedo would be absent for the first time in four years. If given a chance, I’ll help make this year’s Phoot Camp the best yet by continuing his legacy. I may not be able to fill his Speedo, but I can bring an American twist to it and a taste of the wild western frontier to upstate New York.

In all seriousness, I could say I’d bring this or that technique to Phoot, but honestly, Phoot has always brought those things to me, not the other way around. If you told me a year and half ago that I’d be applying with a pure studio lighting shot — or that I’d even have my own studio space — I’d have given you a crazy look. Phoot Campers either taught me these things or inspired me to do them. I’m forever grateful.

So how would I help besides the Speedo and too many cameras? I’d like to bring a whole lot of heart with an eye towards growing the fine art side of Phoot. With the first ever exhibition, I think Phoot Camp will need to take a more measured tone while keeping its penchant for going over the top. I think between my philosophy background and non-commercial shooting practice I can help the other Phoot Campers bring more depth and meditation into their images and really help guide us to a successful show.

Photographer: Cody Bratt
twenty-eight
Rachel Been

Rachel Been

I have incredible lactose tolerance, I love breakfast burritos (the first two facts work in tandem), I’m a virgin karaoke participant but I’ve been saving up for the perfect moment to perform Chumbawamba’s “I Get Knocked Out”, before my moped was stolen I was planning on starting a vintage Puch club titled, “It’s Cookie Time” and honestly, I make a damn good Michelada.

I’ll make Woodstock the best because I’m going to channel Billy Been. Thanks to Billy Been, I love photography. MLK, Joan Baez, kids getting pumped with rubber bullets, Billy shot of all of it during the 1960’s at Cal. He also dropped a substantial amount of acid at Woodstock 40 years ago, and as a result we have a lot of black and white nudes in our basement. We take Billy’s 50-year long photo affair, add some fist pumping, throw in a burrito or two, take a few of my cranky rockstar portraits and an artichoke, and we might just have a Phoot power player.

Billy asked, “Why the hell am I getting on my knees!”

I said, “Phoot Camp, dad!”

“Food stamps? God damn, you’re that hungry?”

Photographer: Rachel Been
twenty-nine
Michael Forster Rothbart

Michael Forster Rothbart

Laura,

I’ve been excited about Phoot Camp since I heard of it last year. I dreamt you’d come do it in our neck of woods. So glad you heard my prayers.

I’m a photojournalist who keeps crossing that double yellow line into the art world.

How can I contribute? Here’s 4 ways:

  • I taught kindergarteners before I became a photographer, and used to be a camp counselor. Teaching again this year at SUNY, it’s been great to transform old games into photo activities. Love to do some at Phoot Camp. Read this quote.
  • I believe strongly in the importance of building community and learning from everyone around us. That sounds sappy. I said it better here.
  • I’m currently obsessed with David Hockney’s collages, working out ways to transform collages into time-lapse animations, swapping out individual photos. I’ve got an experiment I want help trying, using 9 or 12 cameras shooting in synch.
  • I live close to Woodstock and the Catskills. I’m glad to come help with logistics or any other work in advance.

It’s equally important to know what people will NOT do when gathered together in the dark. I hereby swear:

  • I won’t eat sheep eyeballs. Once was enough, thanks.
  • I won’t bore anyone with stories about living for two years in Chernobyl. Unless they really, really want to know.
  • I won’t ask anyone to attempt crossing Manhattan naked, like my brother did. Actually, I take that back, just got an idea for a photo…
Photographer: Mike Forster Rothbart
thirty
Kristina Yamamoto

Kristina Yamamoto

This year, I finally quit my part-time job to work as a full time photographer. I’m still figuring out all the ups and downs of being a freelance photographer. But having picked up work with a local photo studio, a few print publications, and any freelance jobs I can get my hands on, I’m making my way through the path I want to be on. My real creativity comes out when I can get people in on my silly ideas and can have fun with a story line. I know it wouldn’t be hard to get any one of the campers in on any of these ideas. I’ve been working on my 366 project this year (yes, it’s still going) and I’d love to bring more of that creativity to Phoot Camp this year and get some of the other campers in on it as well.

I’ve been waiting all year for the chance to go to Phoot Camp again. The excitement just keeps building as I brainstorm through the multitude of possibilities that this year’s camp has to offer. To be able to spend more time with friends I made last year and to welcome new ones. I’m still amazed by the enthusiasm, brilliance, and warmness of the campers I met last year, and feel honored that I was welcomed to join such a group. It’s amazing how quickly you can form bonds within such a short period of time, and I’m grateful for every one of them.

Photographer: Kristina Yamamoto
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Netta Marshall

Netta Marshall

I’ve always been a curious person. Intrigued by everything around me. Inspired by the things I see on a day to day basis. Finding the beauty in the everyday things, and the intricate details in the simplest.

Capturing moments has been something I’ve done since I was a small child. Before I could operate a camera, I would draw the things I saw around me in a sketchbook I carried with me. I was always aware of my surroundings. When I got to be old enough, I’d grab my dad’s old Minolta and run around snapping photos. My friends on our bikes. My birthday parties. My after school outings. Playtime in the park. My parents would develop the film for me and the pickup days were always my favorite.

Now that I’m older, not much of this has changed. I carry a camera with me everywhere I go. I’m still asking all my friends if I can have their portrait when we’re out. Photography has become my outlet. My creative release when I’m having a bad day or I’m frustrated.

I’m constantly inspired by other photographers. Constantly learning new things, and I strive to sharpen my skill by endless practice and challenging myself to try new things with photography. I’m always looking for an opportunity to better myself and learn from those around me, and I think Phoot Camp would be perfect for this.

Photographer: Netta Marshall
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Lisa Weatherbee

Lisa Weatherbee

Coming back from last year’s Phoot, my goal was to hang on to all that creative energy and inspiration I was feeling in my heart and to use it every day - to keep the experience alive, inside of me. The work that came out of that weekend helped me take my photography to a new level of personal growth and the memories we made together continue to push and inspire me on a daily basis.

I feel a bit like Jack Shephard from LOST these days, telling Kate “WE HAVE TO GO BACK!!” I want to return to “the island”, the source of so much creativity and magic for me in the past year, to recharge, to see old friends, and to meet the friends I haven’t met yet. I am fully committed and excited to make this year as fun and inspiring as possible. I want to be a part of the new memories.

I live in kind of a fuzzy reality, a place where what is real, and also what I would really like to be real, tend to blur into each other. Phoot Camp is one of the few places I have found this to be totally acceptable. For 3 days we get to go away and make up our own world, a world where nothing is too silly or not worth exploring. I realized that’s where the magic happens, and that is a pretty cool thing to be a part of.

Photographer: Lisa Weatherbee
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Chris Butler

Chris Butler

What I will bring to Phoot Camp 2012 (A list by Christopher Butler):

  • My memories of Phoot Camp 2011, which was both the art school I never attended and the inspiration I always sought. And my sincere appreciation for being invited back.
  • My Bolex. (I will devote the majority of my creative energy to filming the Phoot Camp 2012 Home Movie, which will be a silent, motion picture portrait of the weekend, the attendees and their work.)
  • My unbridled enthusiasm for this one-of-a-kind weekend of collaboration.
  • My abiding love of analog photography, and therefore a) my Nikon, and b) my “Decade” cameras (so I may include the faces of Phoot Camp in my ten-year-long photo project).
  • My fear of bears.
  • My lean, sinewy physique.
  • My hair.
  • Advil.
Photographer: Chris Butler
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