In September of 2015, I fulfilled a lifetime goal of traveling to Ireland, and driving a circle around the island (visiting Ireland and Northern Ireland both). I drove the circle clockwise, and constantly reflected on how lucky I was to finally visit Ireland. After all, who knows what life brings - I may never be back, let alone have the time to drive around the country.
So, due to an element of my speaking tour, in February I am flying to Dublin, speaking in Belfast, driving to Cong, then to the Cliffs of Moher, then Listowel, Cork and back to Dublin. In essence, I am driving a circle around Ireland, in the other direction, after having just done it a few months ago.
Everything I do is stupid, but I'm glad.
As I am stuck indoors today because of the blizzard, I have been trying to clean up my web presence. This includes trying to cobble together an updated version of my horribly old and incomplete photography CV. In the process, I discovered that in 2011, I was awarded an Honorable Mention for 'Absent Friends' in the IPA (International Photography Awards) that I don't think I even knew about. (Or my memory is failing me, which is possible). Huzzah!
A short time later, I received an invite from the GWWC chapter of the University of Pennsylvania to come and speak to their group. Very honored to get these invitations.
At least now I can feel like I got something done today.
In 2009, I began work on a portrait series called 'Absent Friends', which I just completed a month or so ago. It is now in the process of final edit and preparation for book form, and possible gallery display.
Imagine my surprise when I came upon the musical work of Max Middleton (no relation), whose 2013 album 'Two Cranes' has a track titled 'Absent Friends'. Since I would be very, very surprised if he has ever heard of me, I presume this is a classic case of separate Middletons stumbling on to the same title. The universe does enjoy its games.
Give the track a listen - his channel on YouTube also has more of his very relaxing music. I'm playing some of it now.
Absent Friends - Max Middleton - from his album, Two Cranes
In 2009, I was selected by Dr. Jessie Voigts to be spotlighted as the Photographer of the Month for the website Wandering Educators, a global community of Educators who share travel experiences for the purpose of improving education. I was very honored by Jessie's invitation, and enjoyed coming across this article today as a reminder (time flies!).
The links in the article for my website and blog are long-dead, so don't click them. But Wandering Educators carries on, so make sure to explore the fun site there. Huzzah!
Photographer of the Month: Michael T. Middleton
With Vaibhav on vacation for this episode, we are bringing in a special guest correspondent who has participated in one of the most epic past road trips...a 2-day absurdity that ranged from Minneapolis, Minnesota, to Miles City, Montana, and caught both Dakotas in between...
With this entry featuring actor Osborn Focht, I have concluded the long-running Absent Friends series. Pieces from the series appeared in numerous gallery shows; won an Official Selection in the 2011 Prix de la Photographie in Paris; and had a gallery show at the Straube Center. Possible book offering and gallery shows to come.
Upcoming Speaking Dates
Wed, Feb 17 - Queen's University Belfast, Northern Ireland