Low-Light Shooting at Bastille Day 2011

One of the great joys of modern digital photography is shooting in extremely low light without a tripod. Serious “professional” photographers invest in expensive high performance lenses to produce sharp full tone images that stand up to the demands of enlargement and reproduction, as our reputations may hinge on image quality no matter the conditions of shooting. This year I hauled out my Mark II and 35/1.4 to stalk the wild environs of another Bastille Day celebration on the Grand Route St. John…enjoy! Continue reading

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The Sax Player/Composer

It’s always great to make portraits of master musicians and, occasionally, they’re guys I’ve also played gigs with like saxophone master, Jason Mingledorff.  photo of Jason MingledorffIf you follow the New Orleans funk scene at all you’ll recognize Jason as a member of John Gros’ Papa Grows Funk.  What you may not know is that 1) he’s an incredibly well mannered and gracious guy, and 2) he’s one of the best horn arrangers in the city.  “But what’s a ‘horn arranger'”, I hear you ask.  The arranger is the person who figures out what melody or harmony lines will fit best into the overall structure and groove of the song. Continue reading

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Ground Hog Day Music

With snow blasting most of the continent I can’t imagine PunksaTony (sic) Phil will be seeing anything resembling his shadow today.  But every day in New Orleans is a day for great music.  Today’s featured cut was brought to my attention by my dear friend, Alex Chilton, on his masterful High Priest album.  Along with fellow Memphis boy, Tav Falco, Alex had that amazing way of digging up the coolest, funkiest old tunes and springing them on the world like this funk masterpiece from Ground Hog:

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How I Got Into Photography

Olivier-Cindy.Kitten-Photo-1606Professional photographers always get asked: “So, how did you get into photography?”  When I answer that I started in high school with the local newspaper in 1973, the next question is often “How old are you, anyway?”  As I look back on my first tentative steps in a picture-making career I must first give credit to an amazing group of people at the Greater Plaquemine Post where I started.  The editor, Gary Hebert, was a visionary who pushed his paper Continue reading

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A Ride On A Mardi Gras Float

Boy at Mardi Gras parade ©2010 Rick Olivier

Boy at Mardi Gras parade ©2010 Rick Olivier

A couple of years ago our band, Creole String Beans,  was asked to provide live music for one of the floats in the Krewe of Endymion (which is one of the biggest Mardi Gras parades, fyi if you’re not a New Orleanian).  Most of us in the band had never ridden on a float before, especially not in a parade as gigantic and spectacular as Endymion.  Continue reading

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A Magazine Named Desire

Tom Varisco is the only design genius I’ve ever known. He’s also a great lunch partner. I’m not just saying this because he designed my “big O” logo/identity way before Oprah had hers, or because we seem to share a slightly cynical Cajun sense of humor and the sarcasm that can often produce. I’m saying it because he put my song in his magazine. Continue reading

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New Orleans’ Amazing Music Culture

This week I tuned up the vocal cords and played at being a co-host of the It’s New Orleans podcast with my ole buddy, Grant Morris, formerly of The Zephyr radio, and the event really brought home to me the amazing variety of New Orleans’ music culture, a major subject at Rick Olivier Photography. We all met up at The Columns Hotel, sat down, ordered a round of drinks, and just began to talk. Grant, in addition to having one of those perfect ‘pear shaped’ radio voices, also has a great laid back style of questioning that reveals his curiosity of others’ lives.

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