Years ago, during a morning cleaning up after a long night partying, my room mate got pissed finding a bunch of half drunken cans, “Who’s coming over and sandbagging their beers?!”
I always like when someone uses “sandbag” in a sentence. I understand the sandbag. I can relate to it. Not in the sense of half drinking a beer, but in the sense of just chilling.
When I first moved to LA I remember telling someone that I now only have 2 modes, “chill mode” and “chill mode deep”. I was proud of it.
But now I see that I was trying to be a spectator. We are meant to experience new and exciting things, not just a handful of times but all the time. We are not a bag of sand sitting and watching from the bank of the river, or at the bottom of the river, or trying to dam up the river and steer it in a different direction. We are the river.
This is Fred and Max. They own a restaurant called Burgerlords and they are about to open a second location. Stoked for them.
We talked a lot about restaurant survival in Los Angeles. It is so curious to me how some businesses will dump $1000000 dollars into a new spot and then be shut down 4 months later. This happens a ton in SF too. How could you have that much money and not last at least a couple years? At that point you can buy Yelp reviews. But you can’t buy cool. That’s my take away.
I didn’t tell them my restaurant idea. It would be called “Ray’s Eggs” and it would be breakfast only. No dining area, just bean bags and coffee tables. And lots of books. No wifi.
Since my car died, I been riding my bike everywhere. I went to the post office and noticed this electric bike parked in my spot.
At first I thought about how lazy it is to ride one of these and how it defeats the purpose of exercise, but then I looked this little guy up. Turns out he gets a 15 mile range on one charge with a top speed of 15 mph. That is pretty legit for $500.
I live approx 7 miles to the beach and it’s a nice little exercise mission. But usually turns out to being a big chunk of my day. I go and shoot photos, have lunch, go for swim maybe, then ride back. (I haven’t been doing this much lately since it’s rainy and cold.) This e-bike could cut that time in half. But will cut probably 100% of my exercise, that is if I don’t pedal at all and just use the electric motor.
I probably will not buy this. But taking inventory of time spent, it’s curious to see where I can shave off some time for more productivity.
Another post about scheduling, this will not be the last. LOL.
This is Jimmie. He grew up skateboarding with my cousin in Chula Vista, so I’ve known him since he was little. He still is little to me and now we are in our 40s. He is a talented cinematographer.
Still working on planning out my entire year. I don’t really like it, it feels un natural. But I know if I do stick to a schedule I can make my days more productive. And that’s the point right? Put together some good days, weeks, and months and then you have a good year. Stack a bunch of those together and then boom a great life.
Sounds easy enough, but my life is usually all over the place. Being your own boss you get angsty, like I can wake up whenever I want and do anything at any time and no one can tell me what’s what. But that’s just not productive and some sort of structure is needed. Yes, I am just learning this now. I am a late bloomer you could say.
This is Jason. He is a longtime friend, photographer, painter, sculptor, and teacher. He has massive amounts of work. Sometimes I don’t understand how he has the time to make it all.
I think while we all have criticism and judgement, we also have some cynicism. And I think cynicism is the primary enemy of creativity. Jason is a rare one of my friends who is not cynical, or at least that I know of.
Thinking about how much work I plan to make this year. There will be zero time to complain or second guess anything. Of course I want to make good work, but I will have to trust my instincts to hit some of these deadlines. Which in a sense is freeing because it will be fun at least, regardless how it comes out.
So today I am thinking about how discipline is somehow related to creative freedom. They say it takes 10,000 hrs to master something so you should be working on your craft minimum 4 hrs per day. Let’s get to work.
(Trying to put out 1 issue of Hamburger Eyes per month, we have 3 other books coming out, and some fairs and events.)(That is as of right now, could be more later.)
This is Luis. A lot of people I meet through friends. I met Luis at goth nights in SF. Whenever there was a fight, he was in the mix. It turns out he ran a black and white darkroom rental facility at the same time as I did and we have a ton of mutual friends too.
I saw him at a bar called Zebulon the other day. I had assumed some lame djs were gonna be playing so it felt like I was in for a treat when I saw a band setting up with sitars and bongos. But then they started and it was super mellow. I was hoping it would get more jammy and psychedelic but it didn’t.
I said I was going to try and write every day. I don’t think it is impossible, but I have other sites and responsibilities I have to maintain. I guess here is me trying to get out of it already on the first post of the new year.
I’ll make a deal with you, not that you care or that any one is even reading this. How about I will post everyday. Either photos or writings or podcast. That’s not really a deal, that’s a proclamation. An editing of a proclamation I already made. Or really just a personal mission because I wanna see if I could do it.
I was thinking about how we have tendencies to shut out certain things in life that we don’t want to deal with specifically at this point in time. Like just not going to look at these bills right now.
But how can I edit this? There exists a timeline where all my bills are paid easily and on time. Can I bring that timeline into this one?
When you are writing something, you are writing it as yourself and you can consider the piece of writing as a timeline. When you are reading it back, especially if you are writing for public consumption, you are reading it as yourself but also as the intended reader. Which could be multiple personalities like your parents, your friends, your clients, etc.
Reading it back as all these different entities is loosely a metaphor for existing in multiple dimensions at once. And what happens next is you starting changing words, deleting sections, and editing with a purpose thus changing the timeline or, merging a future timeline with the present one.
I am overthinking it, I know. To pay bills easily and on time is a simple formula of increasing income and lowering expenses. Also we go into predictive mode all the time with driving directions, invites to kook holiday parties, random food spots, etc. We make educated guesses about if something will be worthwhile or not.
But, if we go into hyperspace mode we can see the habits and lifestyle of our future wealthy self and then try to incorporate those habits and lifestyle choices into this present timeline. Now we are on to something.
My last post was about getting new habits to reach new goals. But I know just coming up with new random habits isn’t the complete answer.
Here’s Albert Einstein saying it.
“No problem can be solved from the same level of consciousness that created it. “
Wishing you a Happy 2019. May all your wildest dreams come true.
I started writing down goals but it felt off. While I did hit some of my goals for this past year, I knew something had to be different for next year.
I thought about action. Being deliberate and purposeful. For instance, eating better. What if I made a specific grocery list and only got those foods for the entire year? What if I spent 1 day a week to prep lunch for that entire week?
But these aren’t goals. These are habits. The goal would be something like “Get tubed and come out alive”. So the habits to achieve that goal would be surf everyday, eat better, stretch, exercise, etc.
Now I’m writing down new habits. It’s easy to write them, but mind boggling planning to actually implement them.
I’m reading this book about speed reading and it says you have to form the habit of reading. To do that, start with 2 sentences everyday for 90 days. That’s how long it takes to stick. Starting small makes sense when you think about that amount of time.
I guess for me 2019 is about the habit of making new habits and these first 90 days might be the most crucial.
Warning: That includes blogging. One day may my writings enchant you. For now, let’s just try to get in 100 words per day.
“If you wish to make an apple pie from scratch, you must first invent the universe.” – Carl Sagan
I love this quote. I had it on the first page in the first draft of my book. I decided for less text so it got denied.
I love it because I understand the idea of starting something very small and then growing it and growing it. Turning nothing into something. This is how Hamburger Eyes began and it is how everything I do begins.
I interpreted this quote as a belief that there is a natural staircase of steps to achieve something. This long and winding staircase assumes a large chunk of time will be needed. And I operated with this always in mind. I think I have extreme patience when it comes to creative endeavors. I think I have extreme optimism too, which sometimes works against me.
But now I’m thinking I was wrong. Depending on what you believe, the universe was created in an instant big bang or by God in 7 days. Either way, it didn’t take that long.
The idea that you have to spend a long time on something for it to work is a limiting belief is what I am trying to say. You can have success in an instant. You can have a delicious apple pie within 7 days. Recipes already exist, tweak them to your liking. No need to hurry, but no need to wait either.
When we think about resistance, well me anyways, I think about “The Resistance” like all the rebel forces in the sci-fi movies. In fact I have stolen this line from Terminator 4, “If you are hearing this message, you are The Resistance.” I used it multiple times in product descriptions and email newsletters for Hamburger Eyes.
But when it comes to matters of the self, particularly creativity, resistance is the opposite of flow. I find myself battling upstream sometimes, getting tossed, struggling. I plan a certain project out all perfect, yet before I know it chaos occurs.
“What we resist, persists.” That’s a quote I heard recently. I think it means if I resist “problems” then I give those problems more power. I think maybe we have to incorporate the problems and go with the natural flow that will hopefully navigate us to somewhere proper.
Our GPS in this river then must be experience. So from there we could say the sooner we experience more things, the sooner we could navigate a little better. “But I don’t wanna die,” you might say.
Here’s a quote from Charles Barkley, “Everybody wants to go to heaven, but nobody wants to die.” He commentates on NBA Basketball. He says this line a lot. He is talking about how everyone wants to win the championship, but no one wants to play defense. Somehow I think this applies here.
This is Ed Templeton signing copies of his new book at Arcana Books near my place in Culver City. This book store could probably place in the top 10 photo books stores in the world. They have everything. I love going there and browsing books and it’s always a treat when someone I know is doing an event there.
Looking at books it made me think about how different editing for books is versus editing for zines. And how different that is from editing for prints and how different that is from editing for blogs and how different that is from editing for social media. Each seems to have it’s own dialects, boundaries, and obstacles. I have written about this on the Hamburger Eyes site, but I think I will go in on it again.
This is Lee, the owner of Arcana Books. Maybe one day I can interview him and ask what makes a perfect photo book and if or if not that translates to sales.
This is a photo of Alex. He came over and bought some frames.
I’m on this thing where I think I should just be writing all the time even if it is not at all interesting to anyone. Just a heads up.
On the first of every month I dump everything on my phone into a folder on one of my hard drives. Also all my neg scans and other digital photos from that month go in there too. I have all these folders labeled by month and year.
I had a slight feeling of panic realizing that I don’t have back up for any of these drives. What if everything got deleted? I have already had it happen twice before. I think I need to make prints of everything. Yeah?
I drive like a Grandma. I think people who have driven with me kind of trip out on it. Here’s why, I have mostly been driving illegally since I started driving. My Dad would send me on errands since I was 14. I got a driving permit when I was 15 and that seemed good enough for everyone involved.
Eventually got my license at age 28 and didn’t always have insurance or registration on the cars I have owned. This is why I keep it so mellow. I use my turn signals and follow all the rules and try to keep a low profile. Now I am all proper with my paperwork, but my driving habits stayed the same.
I can’t say the same for my health. I have been having problems. Time to act like the health cops are ready to pull me over any minute for fucking up. Eating better, sleeping better, and exercising better. We all should. My body is achy like I just got a seatbelt ticket or some dumb shit.
Thanks to everyone that bought prints! I have 100s of them and plan to update the store regularly so check back from time to time. I’ll remind you. I’m actually going to leave the discount code running for 24 more hours if you are feeling froggy.
Also if you need frames and live in Los Angeles, I got some for you. I have too many and they’re taking up too much space. These are from past exhibitions and are in mostly perfect shape. I have 100s of them in all sizes and shapes. I have started listing them on Craigslist. Let me know if you want some.