Vegas and Oregon

Yes, people. I am still alive and kicking. Any rumors of my demise have been greatly exaggerated. I’ve just been away for awhile and have been kind of busy since I’ve gotten back. So, now here I am trying to get back into the swing of things – until my next trip, at least.

It all started off with five days in Las Vegas to visit family. On my first night there, I met my friend Terrell Neasley, and along with his friend Melissa, we went to see the new Star Trek film. Terrell has written on hid blog about our experience sitting in the third row of the IMAX theater. What he didn’t write about was the film itself.

One of the ads for the film says that people should see it even if they’re not Star Trek fans. Being a long-time Trek fan myself, I think that non-Star Trek fans may like it even more than fans. Why? I don’t mind the fact that a new cast of actors inhabits the characters from the classic series. I don’t mind that the starship Enterprise is given a new look both inside and out. I don’t mind that they’ve tried to make Star Trek cool.

I just couldn’t take the way that this film simply ignores and rewrites Star Trek history. The only way I could somewhat enjoy this film was to tell myself that these are not just different actors, but different characters, too – that it’s a totally different parallel universe of sorts. The names are the same, but the people are different. Parallel universe or not, I still thought the ending of the film (with what Starfleet does to Kirk) was totally preposterous. Anyway, enough said with that.

In Las Vegas, I also had lunch with my family one day at a very good Italian restaurant called Maggiano’s Little Italy in the eastern end of the Fashion Show Mall. If anyone happens to visit Vegas, I can recommend this eatery.

The only thing that had me a little miffed was seeing another customer wearing a tank-top shirt. Now, I’m not one for getting dressed up to go out to eat (especially for lunch) and Vegas is a casual kind of place. I like to at least wear a shirt with a proper collar, though I’ve sat near people wearing T-shirts and that was fine with me.

Wearing a tank-top, though, (especially in a nice restaurant) is a bit too casual for me – even in Las Vegas and even for lunch. Just the thought of there being nothing between that guy’s armpit and the rest of the air in the restaurant kind of gave me the creeps

As for Oregon – well, that was for photography. I made my first trip ever to the Pacific northwest to attend Steve Anchell’s Nude at Westwind workshop. (The photos posted here are from that event, made with my pocket digital camera.) I attended my first workshop with Steve at Big Sur ten years ago and I hadn’t seen him for five years, so I decided to make a return visit.

I flew into Portland and then drove down to the state capitol, Salem, in (what else?) a driving rainstorm. Still, I made it without incident, and had dinner with Steve and his wife Donna that night. The next day I drove out to Lincoln City on the coast, close to the private property where the workshop would be held. Then, the next day, the workshop group met, followed by two days of photographing models.

While most of my photography now is done with models on an individual basis, occasionally I don’t mind working with a group for the chance to meet other people interested in photography and for an opportunity to show my work. Besides meeting Steve and Donna again, I also had the chance to catch up with some photographers I met at previous workshops.

As for the photos I made over the two days, I think I got some good images on the 21 rolls of film that I used. Of course, I’ll have to develop that film to make certain.

Perhaps I’ll have it done by the end of the year.

About Dave Rudin

Dave Rudin is a fine art photographer based in Brooklyn, New York. He specializes in art nude and travel photography, using black & white film and making silver gelatin prints in a darkroom.
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