What started as a gag at the NAHBS event in Portland 2008 has blossomed into a regular feature of my life. While at the bike show we spotted Robin Williams admiring all of the beautiful frames made by the very person sitting in their respective booth.
Instead of just asking the tired request for an autograph or photo, we turned things around a bit by asking for a “group photo”. Robin said ‘sure’ so I handed him my camera, showed him the button to push and I walked back to line up with my friends.
And at that moment, “Photo By:” was born. Photo By: Robin Williams.
We didn’t ask for a photo with Robin. That was the end of it and we all walked on. Which brings us to some of the rules of Photo By:
1. Never acknowledge their celebrity. You are simply asking for a favor by having your photo taken.
2. No autographs or photos with or of your subject. No “I loved you in Look Who’s Talking 6.”
3. Get in, get the shot, say ‘thanks’, and get out.
There was an extremely long hiatus in the Photo By: series for various mostly unknown reasons. Maybe I put it on the back burner, maybe I didn’t encounter too many celebs. Regardless, its back now and I’ll keep updating my gallery as opportunity allows. And as far as my therapist and I have been able to determine, this isn’t an exercise in narcissism, more just an unorthodox way of interacting with people who get bugged for photos and autographs on a daily basis. With my technique they don’t have to be concerned with how they look, if they’re having a bad hair day, if they feel fat, or if they have that “fresh out of rehab” face.
Things don’t always work out, however. I’ve ben flat-out denied (William Shatner) or just encountered someone when the timing really wasn’t right (Meg Ryan, Ben Affleck). If they are sitting in a restaurant having a conversation with a friend, of course I’m not going to ask “Hey will you stop what you’re doing and take my picture? Here-“.
Now fast-forward to May of 2010 in Malibu, CA at a Starbucks stop along our 100+ mile ride up the coast to Santa Barbara. We spotted Kevin Dillon aka Johnny Drama from Entourage sitting outside with some friends. I asked him the scripted “Would you mind a group photo?” and he jumped up and agreed. However, before I could stop him he lined up with my riding buddies and posed for the photo he thought I was about to take. “Sorry man” I told him, “I need you over here behind the camera.”
His friends hit the floor with laughter and I got a bunch of shit from Kevin, asking why I couldn’t have just asked anyone closer to us. In the end he was a good sport and gave us what we wanted, and we got back on our bikes and continued onward, mission accomplished.
House party with actress Linda Gray from ‘Dallas’.
Photo By: Larry Hagman
Comedian Doug Benson Valentine’s Night.
“Dallas” premiere on TNT. Photo By: Patrick Duffy
Outside a bar in L.A. Photo (and finger) By: Keifer Sutherland
At the local coffee shop with my barista friend. Photo By: Annette Benning.
Being an avid bike rider and part-time Pro cyclist stalker, I’ve found myself in a few situations that helped fill out the Photo By: gallery.
Photo By: Mario Cipollini in his booth at Interbike 2012.
Perhaps the first “Making Of” photo with Cipo!
Me and the lady. Photo By: Miguel “Big Mig” Indurain. From his poster signing table at Interbike 2012.Shirt courtesy card-snappers on the Strip.
More to come – stay tuned!