Stahl House

A visit to the Stahl House with Benjamin Heath and Lauren Randolph — Los Angeles, California. October 2014.

(All color photographs were taken with a Mamiya 7ii and black & white were taken with a Leica MP. All images scanned and processed by Richard Photo Lab)

The Calm

I’m really enjoying Marco’s latest creation, Overcast and as a result I’m listening to more podcasts these days.

As you might expect two podcasts are related to photography: Pdexposures which is a lot of fun for film shooters. It’s three photographers talking about gear and goofing on each other. Highly entertaining.

The Candid Frame is more serious. It’s a weekly 1:1 interview show with a different photographer each week. Charlie Rose style. 

One thing I’ve noticed with many/most of the photographers interviewed on the Candid Frame is the common bond photography has with all of them. Some of the artists are depressed. Some are content and some are currently high on life. They are all at different stages of life and their career.

But regardless of their current situation, they all say describe a similar experience of calm when out making photographs. It doesn’t matter if the photographs were any good that day or not. They have found a source of peace.

I’ve tried meditation on and off. It’s wonderful but for some reason it comes and goes with me. I’m sure it’s me. 

But I absolutely do share and treasure that feeling of calm when I’m out taking photos. With my business travel schedule, I think photography in some ways has saved me …. or at the very least has made my travel routine less stressful. 

Fred Wilson likes to say that struggling portfolio companies need more help than those that are doing well. But cynics would say that VCs stage their investments so that they can “cut and run” when things don’t look promising. What’s your take?

A few thoughts come to mind. 

Fred is right. Struggling companies need more help.

And VCs I have worked closely with tend to dig in more when things are hard. Inside rounds, recruiting, hard conversations with the founder, layoffs. All painful, all require time and much harder than it looks. 

I have also seen VCs “cut and run” so to speak. It’s more of a drift away than a run. Yes, sometimes this happens because the VC is lazy, unable or unwilling to help. Other times VCs drifts because they are fatigued of a founder controlled company where the board is unable to impact change. So they drift.