Create the Images You Imagine

 

Create the Images You Imagine

 

Lesson Info

Create the Images You Imagine

Robin has been doing photo journalism for about twenty five years and she has created some of the most amazing images and I'm sure you guys have seen she's considered one of the world's most world renowned photographer's and she's also the author of this fantastic book called hoop the american dream so I got a chance to take a peek and there's really some amazing stuff when does it launch it releases tuesday september twenty fourth okay and they imagine amazon or local bans on dot com barnesandnoble dot com and elliot days haven't book signing thiss twenty seventh for me and it's going to be an independent bookstores as well fantastic moscow costco's okay all right robin I'm going to leave it to you thank you so much thank you for having me hi everybody thank you for coming in a big shot out to creative life for having me I'm very honored to be here today I do want to talk about my hope book like I said it releases on tuesday but I wanted to give you guys a little background before thi...

s book came out and what I've been doing since nineteen eighty five and that is I have been a photojournalist for five different papers all over the country and this is back in the day when we would cover football games I did football games portrait pse and fashion food as a photojournalist you had to be good and everything. You couldn't just say, oh, I'm just going to be, you know, do sports, or I'm just going to do portrait the training for you. You had to be good at everything, and you had to be quick. You had to produce high high quality. You had tio creating all kinds of light that you didn't even know that what it was going to be like into you actually walked into the venue or to the room. So doing that for sixteen years was amazing training, and I was actually the first female photographer ever hired at the sandusky registered, which was a big thrill for me. But I am not shy of being the only girl it goes back to when I would follow my older brother around in the neighborhood and he would be playing kickball or dodge ball. And I would say, come on, let me play and he's like, get away from me and soon he would let me start playing wiffle ball in our backyard and soon the boys to start picking me. Before they would pick up the boys and I learned quickly that I had to run faster and jump higher than the guys and that still holds two for me today I was the only girl in my shop class there was twenty seven guys and me and most papers that I've worked at where I was the only female of the first one there, so that was a big, big honor for me. My motto in life is passion equals purpose to find what really, really love because life is too short not to do every single day what you love to do and it doesn't matter if you want to train dolphins in miami or it could be whatever we find something that you're very passionate about and that you love because it's important to follow your james with that and to make your heart happy and then you will find your purpose and that I tell that to people all the time. Um, I'm going to share with you some of the portrait I did as a newspaper photographer and the lessons that I learned being a newspaper photographer that's helped me get to this book today and everything in between I had to go to an assignment, come back with something and make something out of nothing quite a bit and I'd have to think out of the box this is a twenty six mile marathon that this is the one of the first runners back and instead of being at the finish line like everybody else I have to think gosh what would make something different you know when you do this every single day it's it's challenging to come up with something different which again helped me with this new book so I went to the parking deck where the runners would end up getting refreshments and this is the first guy back shooting with your heart is another big motto of mine I always say you know people ask me where how did you get that shot or how did you do that and I always say you know what it's it's not here it's here you know just follow your inner voice and follow that passion because you already know everything inside your heart so you can't touch it you can't feel that you can't see it where you could feel it but you can't see it you can't touch it but I think shooting with your heart is crucial I'm not a techno person at all I just when I ever I'm shooting anything it's it's with my heart this is ah picture early locally taken at magnuson park and a friend of mine's doggie love the sky there one of the biggest compliments I get a lot is my pictures have emotion or the emote emotion I can't think of a higher compliment on def you can find pictures that have emotion this is a girl at a homeless shelter that I was actually photographing another lady and her baby and I had an assignment for the paper in richmond I was at and I looked behind me and I see this amazing light coming through the door and the patterns on the law and I said I'll be right back and this little girl was sick at the at the shelter and I just I love the light and I love the composition so I mentioned earlier about sports I think the hardest thing is a photojournalist for me was covering sports and I started in the days where we would have you know huge lynch's on mata pause which you still do today but it was film and it was not on a focus so that that day to me a little bit but you know I always equate it to being on a grease bowling ball trying to make all those things happened because by the time you lift your camera to your to your eye that moment's gone so that was that was part of the most challenging thing for may I always say to people, if you can photograph sports you can do anything looking for something out of the ordinary here's another example here you have these tough guys motorcyclists at a motorcycle rally and this sweet tender moment happened I love this picture shows when I was working to cleveland paper so always looking for not the obvious is very important being at the right place at the right time following your intuition I'll explain more about this later that clyde that's coming up, but I looked out that was obviously butter beans fight and the guy fell right in front of me and made a nice shot aa lot of my job is the newspaper for tiger was driving around looking for pictures and it sounds like, wow, what a great thing to get to get your car every day you get to drive around, look for photos well through years of doing that, you know, like really okay, I can't shoot any more kids running through the sprinkler, I just can't I just can't find any more cute dog sites on the on the side of the road, so ah, little that I know that that was going to be a big part of what I was going to be doing with this book, so it definitely prepared me for that. This is a drug raid that I got from a lot of times I would get to ride with police officers and firemen and this was an actual drug way, which is dangerous, I've been in the line of fire a few times and that is very, very dangerous to be in that situation. I talked earlier about following your inner voice I was at a basketball game in ohio and I was down the other end of a basketball court and I see these two guys it was like thirty seconds left in the game and you know, people are on their feet cheering like crazy and you've got seconds to think what you're going to do you going, you're going to try to make it down the end of that court to get that shot are you going to stay put because remember, by the time you lift your camera the moment's gone I decided to go for and I little picked up all my gear ran down the court, set up my my my mama pot in my lens and got this picture in iran huge the next day and although the guy's got teased for having their blanky the next day but so following your voice plays a big part here I was at the olympics in nineteen ninety six and I literally felt like I was the only girl and everybody most that most people there were guys so I was really again used to that and I came to this venue and it was janet evans when she was trying to qualify, so I walked in late little later to the right was before it was back to begin and all the guys are at the other end of the swimming pool and I like cash you know what? I'm feeling something down here and you know they're looking at me laughing because I walk by like ha ha you know you're not going to get anything down there and like now I'm feeling something down here well, I'll be darned if janet evans didn't qualify and she lifted her face out of the pool right and with the lines on the poll I just I love that picture and everybody was just like their mouths job they couldn't believe it but you know, I just if you if you miss then you miss but you've got to follow your inner voice because what if you don't if you don't try very important here's one of examples of feature driving around looking for something different not the normal and this is a protective sheeting on a salt pile um in sandusky and ah this kid was running round up top and I thought it made a really nice picture with the light hitting the alleged there this is a portrait I shot on the way to work it was actually walking down the sidewalk and this woman was in her doorway and the light was was coming in and she's only sixty nine years old I couldn't believe it I thought she was way older and smoking a cigarette so again portrait was a really big part of of what I did so this next picture for use how many people here from seattle yeah um I when I first got to the two seattle nineteen ninety five I worked at the seattle post intelligencer that's why I moved here I was talk recruited by them and in baseball there's four positions that are key when you're at a big game usually have one or two for tigers but in the siri's you have four you have the press box first base, third base and center field well the prime spot for photographers like you know the most coveted his first base and then second his third press boxes you know, not so hot center field it's not that great, so I just moved here was the only girl and I got asked to be in the press box and I'm like under my breath going cash story when I stuck in the press by you know, complaining under my breath and anyway at the end of the game we're playing the angels I believe randy johnson's at the pitching mound I think it was, you know, bottom just like a story bottom of the ninth and he pitches it and the guy misses and strikes him out and he raises his hand well the photographer on first base missed it because his arms covering his face photographer on third base missed his face because his arms covering this face so the only picture that you could see his face was from above in the press box so the next day I come in and we now we're going to play the yankees in a five game series you guys remember the west championship games, those five games? Well, I come into work the next day and my boss says ok, robin you're on third base and the rest of guys got there seems like moving on up moving up to arthur so the next game we we lost the first game we lost the second game and now we have to win the next three games to move along in the syria's well, who does that that's impossible, right? And if you remember the the seattle mariners where the bad news bears nobody even went to the games, right? I mean, it was like empty seats. Well, now the stadium is packed everybody's coming that the town is going crazy, you couldn't walk down the street without posters and signs and cars beeping and it was it was mayhem so we lost the first game lost the second game then we lot one the third game we won the fourth game and now we're going to the fifth game can you imagine the pressure, especially on the only girl new girl now we're at our meeting that we had at the paper every time we before we go to the games, we have a staff meeting kind like we'd be in a room like this and my boss would go over the details of runners would come pick up our film at this time and so he would hand out our passes and he would say ok, robin in this game you're on first base I went wow ok yikes so he gave out the passes to everybody else and after the meeting one of the photography that had been on first the whole time came up to me and said, gosh, robin, I've been on first base the whole siri's would would you switch with me? Would you would you between consider switching with me and I thought, wow, I don't know that's the prime spot, you know? And I thought, you know what how would I feel if I was him? You know, I really liked him he's a very talented retire arrested you know what? You can have it you can have it so I gave him the pass and, you know, he's happy I'm happy it's fine. So we're at the game and I don't know if you guys remember this photo but were at the game and it's mayhem again I mean, you can't hear yourself think we were I think we went into eleven innings at this game because it was it was going into overtime and it's, bottom of the eleventh, griffey gets on second base, right? So now it's two outs groupies on second, if we win this game, we're going to win the us championship and I am sandwiched between I guess nineteen for toddlers like this on third base. And I mean, you really can't hear yourself think because it is so crazy. The crowd is going crazy, everybody's on their feet and the kingdom had a roof, right? So it's, even it's just just can't even hear yourself think anything. And here comes mark edgar martinez and he's doing his practice swings, you know, outside the box and I remember saying to myself, quick, quick, quick, robin, robin, you know, try to pull myself in without listening to the chronis of what have you learned in the past? What have you learned in their pass? It could help you in this moment. Right now. This is it. This is this is pick time. Right? And I looked down in my film and it says I have taken twenty five out of thirty six pictures and I thought, take it out, take it out because I only have eleven shots. Let those thirty six rolls on a film, right, remember, this is film, this is not digital. So I take it out manually you know I need to do the automatic that take it up manually and stick it in my pocket which could have been a disaster and I put a fresh roll in we've been loading not all the film can be a disaster what if you brought you drop it what if you don't load it correctly it doesn't go in the spool bubba so here comes acker comes up hits the ball pop goes down third base the guy misses it and here comes ken griffey jr and he's come around third at that point and we got him chills thinking about it at that point I'm just spraying everything that's moving because you know how do you know where to point your camera? You know you're like it's just mayhem and and so I guess instincts your pops and so here comes griffin he's running around he's come around there he comes to home plate he slides into home plate and the rest is safe and all the mariners run out to him and dump on top of him jump on top of him and griffey pops his head up and I take boom boom two frames I'm not a film that picture is the second to last picture on the roll of film if I hadn't changed my role if I thought what if I learned how the past if I hadn't been kind person too say hey, you could have that you pass and believe me, I'm not sitting giving myself because I'm just saying so something to think about you know and I would try to tell the photographers even a competing papers hey, did you notice that the blah blah blahs over there just we're all in this together all here to help each other you know? And so that picture eyes very dear to me and I am very honored that it was voted I guess best sports picture the decade and when I got back to the paper all the guys all the writers had come and gotten all the guys film that and so I'm died back in my little red nissan sentra ana had the roll of film in my pocket and I sat there by myself and all the guys at the end of the room and I you know, got it out and go this looks pretty good and I scanned it in still not knowing the magnitude of it and one of the guys came behind me and said that that's page one get that downstairs right now so the next day it was, um on the cover of our paper and cover of a book and so I'm very grateful for having that taking that picture, I have chills I watched that and you know, to see that and that's such a famous oh, and knowing that the story behind it was really special thank you thank you I it kind of blows me away to this day when I see the clip because it's so fast I thought, wow, that was but that's just you know it's years you can't not success doesn't happen overnight it's years and years of being in the trenches I always tell people you know, it's it's years and years of doing that and just like anything in life you have to practice practice practice at it and so that was very, very fortunate to be at the right place to write time here's another example being kind I was in norfolk, virginia one of the best photo papers in the country and I'm the reason for that every because why norfolk, virginia you know it's in the middle of kind of nowhere virginia it's because we had a director photography that cared about photography and our pictures ran six columns you know, but on newspaper world it's by that it's all about size and you didn't have one column two column three com that's how you would measure your pictures and so we ran six column pictures and so every photographer in the world wanted to come work at that paper, so bob lin wood recruit the best photographers and I was very honored that I got a chance to work with some of the best drivers in the world there and I was at this particular event they were leaving, the rains were leaving for the gulf war and his family came to say goodbye was very touching moment and all the photographers are up on top of these these families, you know, just like, well, leave them alone they're you know they can radio photo war can just back up a little bit and give them some space so I actually got down on the ground with my three hundred millimeter lens. It was a little backlit follow what the heck boom boom and I get back to the paper and once again the runners came with didn't get picked up my film, so we develop my film and we were going through my slides and they had already run the first run on the front page and one of the photographer said, what the heck this is the picture of the day, so he very kindly put it on a p wire again. That was way back in the day and it got on the cover of life magazine it's been inside life magazine. It was in the year pictures in life magazine. They told me that there was three hundred fifty thousand pictures to edit for that one square, but my picture was and again kindness, you know, just pull back a little bit and not get in people's face I always kid people I made it with bart simpson, I actually made it don't let anybody tell you that you can't do it that you can't be a photographer that you can't do anything, really because I was told I was a freshman in college and I remember sitting in my dorm room and, oh, this guy from nowhere just walks by and heat my dorm room is open and he's like you might as well just turn around and go home. You'll never make it in this business, and I'm like, really? Why? You know, I'm eighteen years old and from the south and from richmond, virginia men, ohio, ohio university, the best school in the country for photo journalists, by the way, and I remember thinking, wow, why would you say that to me? He is well, this business is so competitive, everybody in the grandmother wants to be a photographer, so you might as well just pack it up and go home, especially being a girl like you. Wow, okay, so I didn't give it too much thought, but in the back of my mind, I thought I would use that energy to even to succeed even higher because again remember being girl gotta run faster, jump higher and I I always give one hundred percent no matter what and the reason I mentioned that is one of biggest compliments I got besides my pictures, having emotion is I'll never forget I was at a wedding about ten years ago, and this videographer came up to me and she said, you know what I love about you, robin, no matter if you're shooting a janitor's wedding or the queen and king of guitar or whoever you give one hundred percent and I thought, how really that somebody thought that I mean, that's, that's really, really nice the biggest compliment again? And so I even if I'm making a card for somebody, which I do a lot, I just give one hundred percent in everything ideo, you know, and I try and not perfect, but I really try hard tio to do that no matter what the situation is, um came almost done with my photojournalism days, and we're going to jump to the book, but I have another story that I want to share with you that has to do with following your inner voice and don't let people tell, you know, I was a photographer at the p I, as you know, and I had one of photographers come up to me one day and said, what are you working on? And I said I'm going to do a story on runaways because of the becca bill and parents didn't have a right to bring him home with that sweet girl was murdered and and I'm going to do a story and I'm going to find a homeless girl and I'm gonna do a story and he looked at me stop me in the hallway because I'll tell you three reasons why that will never happen as have really goes first of all, you're never going to find a homeless person that's gonna let you do it I go ok because second of all if you do you're never going to get a parent to sign off they have to sign for the release because they're under age and number three if you get those two things you'll never get the paper to run it I've been here thirty three years robin and I have never been able to pull it off so good luck with that paper is never going to run it I said ok week later had an assignment for this heroin recovery addict recovering guy and I said, listen if you know anybody that you would let me photograph him on the street would you here's my card would you would you call me? He is yeah, sure and I'm like thinking like that's gonna happen well week later eleven o'clock p m should tell not call me before before eleven calls me eleven o'clock in those days, we had the answer machine remember laying in bed thinking who's calling me eleven o'clock he's like, hey, yeah found this girl she said she could photograph or if you want to meet me at the corner of a pike and you're twelve and I lived in capital at the time like eyes this safe and so I could get up, you got to get up, you've got to go do this. Eleven o'clock I got in my car, my little red, nissan and I met this girl in the corner appalling that the safest thing to do, and I hung out with her for like, four in the morning, and her name on the street was bride eyes and come to find out later, she was the most popular this girl on the street and I ended up following around for a couple months, the paper end four pages, nineteen pictures, I got the mom to sign the release and I was nominated for a pulitzer prize, so again, don't let anyone use it won some. I told you, you can't use that energy say, yes, I can and I really I'm not telling you this to brag on me or, you know, give myself kudos, I'm telling you that these examples are just if you know what if I hadn't done that? I mean you don't know and so follow your own heart and your own inner voice because you know better than anybody what you can and can't do another example here my friend told me not to enter this magazine contests for life magazine and I was chosen as one of the eight top photographers and young photographer in america twenty four and they made fun of me for entering and again following yet in her voice recently I had the most amazing honor of being asked to be a nikon ambassador there's sixteen of us in the u s and I have been a nikon user since day one on guy I can't imagine she'd anything else I love how durable they are I love the catholic color saturation zay love the lenses I love the bodies now I'm shooting with the d four and a d eight hundred and I've actually had had to hire teams to work with me on big events and there'd be like six of us total and half of them will be cannon or half them would be another camera and they're all great cameras but I have to tell you I saw such a difference in the saturation of the colors we put him side by side, I just ah, I just love nikon I can't say enough about michael so also I if you purchase like to know the gear that all my trip that I took on my hoop trip it's on the bonus material if you purchase my of course now I have left newspaper world year two thousand and I became a freelance photographer wow that is a huge jump and a huge leap of faith right? I'm gonna go get my own jobs I'm going to get my own work you'll learn quickly in the freelance world that you have to go the extra mile because everybody and their grandmother wants to be a photographer and they're all fighting for the same jobs especially in the freelance world but again, if you believe it in your heart if you know that you what you want to do you can do it absolutely a quick thing that I had to learn to is presentation is extremely important I have a lot of high profile clients and they say to me all the time you know what? Robert would such a partisan presentation? You know your pictures are one thing which have to be top notch but you don't just throw him in a box you don't want to just tossem in you know any kind of presentation day without it being top notch and think about what you can do that's different than anybody else's you know follow up with those thinking knows those things are so crucial because everybody in the grandmother wants to do this, you have to think what's going to make me stand out and was going to show that I care you know oprah ways says he loves in the details so that's true it's true and everything that I do another thing I learned quickly in the freelance world is don't be afraid to do things for free if there's something you want to work with or do work with her, learn from or somebody will learn from offer to help haiti, maybe help and and use that as a as a way to learn and get an education that's beyond anything that you can buy use it is in your mind is maybe an advertising budget like how could I learn more about what I want to do? So don't be a shy if anybody asks you to do you think I still do think so free all the time of populates in my heart I try to give a lot to animal causes donate animal causes I think it's very very, very important speaking of animal causes, this is our dog monkey and if you google monkey something good, you will see a video of our sweet dog she's a rescue dog we have four rescue dogs and that that will get into that a little later, but this is my book that came out last november I think and I was actually given this opportunity and offered to do this book, and I'm very honored that I had to get to do this book. Basically, it's fifty seven dogs and their owners and thirty seven of them are celebrities, has robin, robert it's, an open winfrey, tony bennett and I would drive across country and fly across country and take pictures of the dogs by themselves and the dogs with their owners and it's done really, really, really well. So I was very honored to be asked to do that book. The next book that I have coming out on tuesday is this what I want to talk the rest of my time about is hope the american dream. This first of all, this is a self driven project, and how this came about was, I have this dear friend andy, who lives in new jersey. We went to college together, and he came up with this idea of hey let's and each other cards, let's, make each other cards. This is before the internet, you know, before we would be able just do all that online and let's hand make a card because we're always working for other people and it make us give us incentive to shoot for ourselves and and it's a way for us to keep in touch us a great so every month we would mail each other a car that we would hand make well, one year a couple of months out of the air he sent me these pictures of basketball hoops like one in front of a car maybe one there was a front yard sale or whatever and I thought, wow this would make such a cool book this would make calendars and cars he's got to do this or ten years I'm telling my friend you have to do this he's like no no no I don't have the time I'm not interested in doing it so cut too um I go photographing I had photographed basketball pictures before but I am actually in ohio and I see this picture of this hoop in the snow it was kind of where those dr eyes where I literally had my foot in the car I thought I'll take it take the picture and I went, oh oh no I got like I got like the who but it was like something just took over me right? I had no choice in this matter, so the first thing I did literally got it back in the car and I called him and I said andy remember have been bugging you for ten years to do this basketball project he's like yeah I said are you sure you got to do it he's like no why? And I said, well, I just shot a hoop and I'm thinking that I have to do this he's like go for it absolutely at my total blessing show me how it's done and I think I asked him twenty more times report when my partners like ok, you have to keep asking but I want to make sure because my friendship meant more to me than a book, right? So here I go I got a van I called my friend my dear dear sweet friend kim carney who's probably most talented artists on the planet and my partner said you want to ask him to go with you on this trip and so I said she's not going to go u k me so kids at home one day and I called her I said she's like hello and I said, I'm about to ask you a crazy idea and she's like, oh, what I said you want to drive cross country with me and go photograph basketball hoops she's like, are you kidding me? And like no, you know, I mean gone a couple weeks I'm really thinking for five, you know, a couple weeks and her husband's in the background hearing all this he's like go forgo the whole time don't go just two weeks so I literally went to the van we flew to new york and got the van there and weezy exact all across america and so we basically flew from here over tio to new york and we would zigzag away we came this way first right come on and all here that we do a bunch of stuff here that we go back and they come around and this map doesn't show you the actual route but these are the pictures that made it to the book but basically across the united states like this and what the goal for me was I saw this book as a coffee table photography book I saw it as america's game you know basketball is the only game in america that we actually have documentation off and it was invented in eighteen ninety one and I'll talk more about that so I thought would be really cool to have a americana book on unique hoops and then childhood hopes of some of the most revered players of our time you know shaquille o'neal michael jordan lebron james and how cool would it be not only to find their childhood hoop but to have them tell holzer stories about it right about when they were growing up so we're on our way we had no idea what we're doing where we're going and we ended up. We'll talk about that more in a minute. But everybody asked me why basketball? Whose are you? A basketball player. And the answer is, I am not a basketball player. Um, I love sports. I played inter meryl's basketball was voted best six great athlete and since then, and I am proud of that plaque it's still in my elementary school basketball. Well, you see, I think that I think they're beautiful and I think the others representative of a dream, you know, you have a hope in a backboard and who has not thrown a basketball up at a basketball hoop, whether it's game of horse to try to make it. And I think it was just challenging for me to take something so simple and make a beautiful photo of and it was americana, and one of my favorite things is it's like an easter egg hunt, right? I have my friends tease me that I have who pie because we can't drive anywhere like, wow, did you see that ring on that telephone pole? Like what you did? You see that ring? And we were recently in hawaii, and I said, well, you stop the car, there's a hope up in that tree there, like what are you talking about? Like I came watch a commercial anymore our movie and I'll say to my partner look, did you see that hope she's like what we back it up and there it is so I have who by now and so we I just decided that this would be a really, really cool project in a fun project. And basketball has a lot of philosophies that spoke to me not only as a photographer, but as a person, you know? You miss one hundred percent of the shots. You don't take that to me, remember, that poster was like the ball on the court, and and and I never will forget that saying it really resonated with me and that was another reason why I was drawn to this project. I get this question a lot. How do I get my book published? I've got this great idea. How dumb I going to get my book published? Well, remember the dog book that was actually him? Give me that was a gift from god. So I really learned a lot about the way that happens, but, um, I would say, how determined are you, uh, how bad do you want it? Because, you know, if you're writing a book, if you think about it it's it's ink, right it's words paperback probably it doesn't cost that much to print when you're talking for color press and coffee table you know color photographs on do you know called photography books are on the way out you know book stores are closing right I mean every time you turn around there they're becoming is a rare breed so getting a photo book today is really hard and I am so honored because powerhouse books published hoop and I think they're the best fine art photography publishers ever existed and I've never worked with nicer people they actually let me lay out the entire book kim and I did it together which is unheard off and they're just a wonderful to work with and random house is distributing the book which is a dream so I don't know how you ended up with powerhouse random house who just merge of penguin but there was a dream come true and so anyway I would always tell people how determined are you how bad you want because it is not an easy road it could be very frustrating I think I got twenty five nose before I got my yes that's hard you know it's hard you're like wow am I doing the right thing that you got pick yourself up believe in yourself now I can do this and it's not even easy for me to do that a lot of times I have to keep telling myself come on you can do this patience and perseverance is huge you have to be patient you know I want everything now I'm in german eyes don't want it now and I wanted to be great and I want a lot of things now because german eyes are creative demonize one at all you have to be extremely patient and you have to have an idea remember passionate all purpose well I had no choice in this project this project chose me and I am extremely passionate about my who project I just can't believe that I had this idea in my head even ten years ago and now I'm sitting here talking to you guys about that just crazy and the people who are in the book and who have helped me get to this place is just crazy do your homework you're gonna have to do a lot of research so let's say today you want to do a book on cats lessons is that many here have a book idea they want to do that they want to share no okay yeah what would you like to go roller coasters oh questions oh I'm sorry my first well goes to die in costumes okay? Photographs of costumes okay, so what you would do is you would do your homework first thing you want to do is google books on costumes see what your competition issues he was out there right then that's considered your homework find out what they're doing what your idea what how could your idea of being different yes, I know we all see it differently that is one part of it but find out maybe a twist on it that hasn't already been done the next thing I would say is get a collection start shooting them right because you have to have pictures to show somebody you can't just call high random house I've got this great idea going to duke awesome pictures now you have to have a a many portfolio twenty images to get started they're probably gonna ask you for more but just to show people what your idea is then you get your you know ipad that's what I did I put him on an ipad started showing people ah the next thing I was suggesting this is what worked for me I'm sure there's many ways to do things but this is what works for me we called the expo of the book expo of america's my partner's genius idea she's like why don't you call the expo in new york? They're the biggest you know I always go for the best you know when I was ah anything in life why stay here when I was going to go to school why would I go to school down the street I want to go to the best let's go for it let's go to the one hundred percent right we want to go to the best so she's like, well, the best expo is in new york, so I called new york and the lady and I who actually we've become dear friends. Her name is lisa and lisa again, an angel in my life came and said, you know, come on out, if you guys do come, you know, I said, I have to give you a hug because we had this connection over the phone and she was very helpful, and so we did. We bought tickets again, take the guts, do it right? And I want to tell you something that I say all the time and this is before the internet, so you'll laugh because it's dating me again, but people always say, how did you do that? Had you build a house when you build a house? And I was thirty three years old last year and I didn't physically build it, but I, you know, bought the land. I designed it. I've collected all the old wood. A lot of this is in my house. It's all barn wood shaped the old barn wood floors hand him beeves like, how did you do all that? How to collect all those different doors and windows, and I say, I picked up the following and I walked out the door that's all you really do did you guys what probably went on the internet now the phone was being replaced by now you went on the internet and you walked out your door and you got your car right? Is that how you got here? Isn't that every single thing in your life think about I don't know even chills thinking about it okay I want to go to england and take pictures of whatever the british are the guards of soldiers okay so go online click click the mouse always they click the mouse a walk out the door click the mouse get out the door and you're going to the airport you're dodd it's that simple and and I don't know why we all have fear I mean I still do about certain things but you could really think about that that's pretty much everything in line so back to the expo went to the expo did a lot of homework at the expo I met people that I thought maybe I'll self published you know maybe I'll do that I was this close by the way on dso I would talk to people that you could hire to distribute your book because really it's about distribution it's really hard we're going to store for five thousand books I mean you could but how you're going to get him to the independent bookstores you need two people to do their thing that's what they do so I went to the book expo, I looked at all my a b c d s choices, and actually I was told by many that I needed to write a proposal rideable polls I'm not a writer, I'm a photographer. You mean I couldn't write a little paragraph about what I'm going to do? Oh, no, you need ten to twenty pages, you have to find out what the competition is doing, the name of the competition and all about those books that the research, all of that you have to research who your target audience will be, you have to research how you're going to market it, and you have to write pages of what it's really about it's not easy. You really have to want this. You have to want, eat, sleep and drink it that's true on dso also, I bet a lot of research that I have an agent or not, and I learned quickly that, um, you it's best to have one if you want to go to the big publishing houses like random house chronicle because they won't think imagine how many proposals they get a day. They're not gonna look at you unless you have somebody of your legend who's legit to present it so when I got my book agent elizabeth who was amazing I don't know what I would do without her she's like you gotta have a proposal go you know and so it's she would send me the specs and what they were looking for a kind of outline and which made it a lot easier and I believe me I had help on my proposal let's just put that way we'll leave it at that but I had help because no way I could do that it's just too involved if you can't get a publisher I remember I had brought twenty five knows then you could self publish and there's a great company called three three being press and I met them when I was at the book expo last year and for the independent booksellers association out new england they can take you by the hand and walking through the process too again the distribution is going to be the tough part but they're definitely ways just do it and again don't let anybody tell you now because if you want it and you know in your heart and you see it you can do it for sure so my book I I thought you know what I don't want to do all women I don't want to do all men have them participate in my book so what I did is I invited both and I don't know people ask me well, how did you pick? How did you pick who could be in there? It was more about a connect the dots like I meet somebody and meyers drysdale is a legend she would connect me to rick berry and then rick buried like, oh, you gotta have, you know, oscar robertson and there and then and then rick perry connected me to jerry west, jerry west wife who fell in love with the project and who was instrumental in helping me get a lot of these players, in fact, jerry west, I don't know if you guys know who jerry west is, he is the n b a logo is made after him, you know, you've seen that silhouette of the guy basketball that's jerry west and he actually wrote my ford, I can't I could even job that if I tried was so amazingly great grateful for that oh, and super whose local and swin cash is to play for the storm. They're in the book and I went to both their childhood hoops and very honored, and pat summitt is in the book and I was talked a little bit more about that, too, and here are the men, by the way, these doors, the girls and the boys when I was in washington, d c at the boys and girls club I saw those in the lockers went oh you know what that will be perfect for the names and actually in the book I didn't put it here I'm trying to save some secrets for the book but are some surprises in the back of the book there's pictures of all the players when they were kids like there's a picture lebron when he's three with a basketball in your christmas tree and it has their bio because I wanted to inspire kids to follow their dreams that you know these guys were all kids wants to just like you you can do it and so it was really fun to see all these these players and coaches with their childhood players but so very honored who agreed to be in the book and ah again jerry west wrote my ford I know that's ah lo rez but this is james amazement how many people in here know who james may's mathis jim knows well I didn't know I've heard of the nays myth a basketball hall of fame I've heard of the days my trophy I didn't know who he waas and thanks to kim's husband david who was our guiding light to this trip and he would coach is on the road see if you're going to kids you got to do this and so james nays myth and correct me if I'm wrong but this is my understanding of how it all happened eighteen ninety one he was at I think it was the y m c a massachusetts and he was thirty one years old in eighteen ninety one and his boss says to him you got to do something with these kids they're driving me crazy of a snow outside it was cold outside because you got to think of something inside the driving me nuts so he gets this peach basket and he tax it up in the gym or in the in the building and the kids start playing basketball and he actually calls it basket period ball and I'll show you in the next slide the actual rules but so that's how it started in eighteen ninety one so you come up with this idea and holy smokes look where we are today and I thinking he passed away in nineteen thirty nine and he actually had a chance to go the olympics which was must have been amazing thrill for him so I'm driving across country with my friend can you know, two artists who crazy artists in seattle and my old boss alana call e mails me and this is how the whole trip you guys went I always have angels on my side with this ship always in life, especially on this trip and I get this email on it says, hey, robin, I heard you on camera doing this ship by any chance you guys going through kansas and right like thirty seconds or less before I got this email it says welcome to kansas now one of the chances of going zigzagging across the united states we than a thirty second period that I get this email and I said, oh, I am not emailing her back I am calling this woman so I called her and I said alana, I can't believe that I we just we just passed the sign welcome to kansas I said what's up she's like well I don't know why I'm telling you this but I just thought you've got to call my friend bill I like bill she's like yeah he's a photographer you know, just calm he knows about you have talked about you to him just I don't know you kind of call maybe could help you on like ok, so I'm cold calling this guy bill mick I bill robin layton and I was told to call you and I'm in kansas and I asked this question a lot too even if I'm buying like a ah dvd player or anything a tv I always ask the salesperson if you were me which one would you buy if you could buy anything in this room? Which one would you get? Because you know they're going to get the best one because they worked there right? So I say to bill bill fewer may and you're doing this book what would you photograph if you were me in this town and you know, I know we had gone there to shoot pictures at the university of kansas because danny manning went to school there and david booth and suzanne booth who bought the basketball rules, that means that typed out they have a museum there, so that's, why we were there, this was a bonus, so he goes, you know, james, nate smith is buried here and I went really and I think I first sounds like they're going to shoot the cemetery, I don't know I said, okay, that's cool kim's like we're going, we're going tomorrow like, ok, you know, we're going today, so we went to the school, I did the tour university kansas and afterwards I say to the guy I heard the cemetery is not too far from here, so we go see it he is oh, yeah, definitely because I'll tell you a secret let's see if I had an open mind not that would have known this and by the way, do this on the airplane next time you fly an airplane, if you're sitting one inch from somebody say hi, you guys could die together, they introduce yourself, open your mouth in life, that is how I've gotten a lot of places open your mouth top you know, communicate connect with people hey beautiful shirt say something nice communicate it's just makes us all connected so I go and I say to thee go after the tour I said hey chris should we go this cemetery he's like oh yeah goes but look everybody thinks it's a statue at the beginning of the cemetery it's actually in the back and I go well how am I going to find it it's freaking your huge cemetery with ten storms he's like look for this white pillar and you and you'll see it right there are like okay, I get in the car and like kim what do you think she's like we're going on said ok, we're going so we driving around getting towards the back like this is like this I'm getting really skeptical and I look in the distance and I'm like no way is that what I think that is? Is that a basketball? Okay? It has to be hiss it has to be his please don't let it be don't let it be john smith so we get out the car I'm like running towards the towards the twosome and their wass it was his team stone and some people cheerleading pompon thing on it too I'm like are you kidding me? So it was just such another a blessing along the trip and these are the first half of the rules or two pieces of you know eight and a half by eleven pieces of paper that's that's it they're small and they're all hand type and this is the first half of the first page and it's the end sheet of the book which I thought was really program because he is the father of basketball and then the last page is sorry the last page is the um second half of the second sheet does that makes it so these are these became and I knew that was gonna happen I thought ok that's perfect so we could use those so everybody asked me how many pictures did you shoot? Well I shot over one hundred thousand images that's right one hundred thousand and about nine months and it's not about quantity as we all know is about quantity but that just shows you how crazy what's it's referred to do this project I had to edit as we went because there's there's no way I could keep a handle on the amount of images I mean that's just craziness so um just under one hundred images made the book which is not that many but again a lot of tight editing um we covered thirty five states and including hawaii um didn't drive that why though and thirty one players ended up participating fifteen women sixteen men which I wanted this to be like a said americana and the childhood hopes of some of those guys but um, I didn't want to be quote, quote, quote, story sort, so I kind of wanted to make some actually worked out perfect. I dedicated the book to pat summitt I don't if you guys are familiar with pat, she exemplifies the definition of a champion she's the most winning his coach in the world like no command or woman's won more games and this woman she's to be at the university of tennessee and recently has been diagnosed with alzheimer's. They've done a film on her panic, so and she has a book out as well, so I can't think of ah, another person to dedicate the book than to her she's such a example to so many people and also I dedicate the book to the boys and girls club of america because I found in my travels, a lot of players said they owe their life in the careers to the boys and girls club and also our dedicated to my parents has always because everything I do, I do thanh or them, and they encouraged me to follow my dreams and supported me with with all the crazy ideas that I had in my career. So kim's husband I mentioned earlier david was our driving force at home and was a team effort here and he's like, oh, you guys got to go to the crow agency in montana and that's an indian reservation I'm like on that sounds awesome so we're driving through these neighborhoods back roads and we've been going to some pretty tough areas and a lot of these cities and we see this beautiful hoop on the side of ahh guess was like a barn and kim said to me, you know what? You should collect some of these and maybe doing exhibit in a show when you because I want to do in our exhibit and gallery show whatever and so we would ask people well, if we could buy the hoop off their bar you know, like of you know it's funny because when I would remember when I'd have to drive around look for feature pictures and for the newspapers well driving across country you have to get permission and they have to sign a release for these pictures right? Because you can't just go on people's property so coarse you have to knock on doors and if they're not home we would leave a note and so the first thing somebody would do and I knocked on the door ah, they would say yeah, and they look at me like, what are you selling? And then I would explain I was there to photograph, you know said, is that your basketball hoop like, yeah, that's it can take a picture of it and they're like that all things and they're like yeah that's fine and then they felt relieved because I wasn't selling anything and then I told him and I was doing then they started getting excited about it but when I was telling these guys about what I was doing, they actually said that their kids made that like kind of thirty years ago and that I could have it but I always insisted that I pay him for um I try to do something different to again you know, when you're shooting basketball hoops same old same old try to find different ways to make it interesting and this is actually at the university in l a and this is through the netting at night and I made this really cool feel to it so um trying to find something different this is actually larry bird's childhood hoop and I had seen on the internet that his hoop still existed but I think it was date a couple of years ago and I'm like, gosh, I hope that still take you to today because you never know about dates and if they're still there. So kim and I decided that we I think we spent three days in indiana because indiana, as we all know is a big basketball state and we the light was getting like just just about right you know, the best time as we all know to shoot pictures is early morning late evening well when you're driving across country you can't do every hoop during that time I'd still be on the road you know, a year later so we had to take what we could and when we could so the light's getting right and we're driving through french lick indiana that's where he's from and I remember you know we ran into this bartoli quickly quick is larry burns who is still here and he's like what? And so this guy gave me directions and we peeled out of there we pull up in the light was perfect and this is the original backward that he's to play under and it was recently just sold by another we've got the couple bought it and there's there's been a shooting under but what a thrill to be you know it's one thing to see the picture of of the hoop you know, on an internet or take every tv whatever but to stand there and just imagine them is just quite a thrill we were in kentucky and you know, we had long days in fact actually they were long but they weren't we would get up at seven ish and then we would probably unpack ten ish every night but it seemed like two hours because we were following our dream we were doing or my jane thank you camp we were doing what we were passionate about and I was like what? We just checked out of the hotel this morning when we were checking into another hotel every night we were pretty much in a different hotel and sweet cam would unload the carts load the carts and she she's a lot stronger than me and uh zits I was like, ok, we had two carts full every day morning and I talk about hard work one hundred seven degrees it's hot you're tired, you know it's it's it's a lot of work so one night she's like you know what I'm going to stay in and shell out I said no problem me being the crazy driven one I'm like I'm going to go find a picture and I drove around in kentucky at sunset and I love this picture I love all the shapes um so they were still on the way back into the indian reservation up in montana and I see this hoop and get permission to photograph it and this young guys buy a thirty comes out I said, hey, is that yours he's like yeah and tell him what I'm doing is like cool so I start shooting it and I look over and when I'm done does that mean something to you are these excuse me? I'm like well, you know, would you be interested in selling that hope and he looks at me, he said I'll sell it to you for the cost of a case of beer I'm like are you kidding me is like you guys are just kidding is like I'll buy it from you so I ended up buying it from him and that thing is on a nine foot posts right? I'm thinking kim's like are you crazy like oh no we're just pull it out of the ground and throw it in the van the van that has two carts full of gear equipment and three other things which I'll get to in a minute that you guys don't know about yet at the end I'll tell you so weigh started to get a crowd going and he left to get some friends in a chain and tied it to his car we had to pull it out of the ground and um you will see it a little bit later what happens with that hoop this is lebron james childhood hoop and this is in akron ohio and lebron was sweet enough to write us a paragraph just for the book I think ninety nine percent of all the quotes in the book were written just for me for the book and there was one maybe two they gave me permission to use what I think it was it was actually one but most everybody in that book wrote it just for me it was very sweet because they're busy you know and they get request all the time so it was actually amazing that he actually took the time tio do this for me details a lot of things that I do in my career are details and going you know when I would be an event if there was a fork we had a really cool handle on it trust me that fork would be photographed with my mike roland's and uh and then the whole scene and a great example of that is this is a bar I think it was in connecticut and last year and I'm like well that's so beautiful it's beautiful setting and then I noticed this little tiny speck in the net and I get closer I start walking up and start walking up and there it wass this little tiny leaving he's just like hanging out right now that well that's the picture you know from this again thinking not just taking dive in their different lenses go a little tighter tighter, tighter and I mean look at the difference between that and that and that actually this actually made it to the book here's another example this is one of my favorite pictures from the trip so everybody asked me and I think this is the silliest question did you put that vine and they're like no can you imagine me being I'm gonna weave this no, I did not and recently I just realized that this is actually the vine not part of the basket the net, which is amazing to me. So that's one of my favorite pictures from the book as well think out of the box that's a big one. That's what we've been talking about, right? Think out of the box here's example of that, most people would shoot the red, white and blue. Who can I believe me? Because I didn't just walk up in this came to me sometimes if I had the luxury would take me an hour, you know, arm or maybe and sometimes I'd have two minutes. I mean, it would depend on how much time, but start really just sitting with your subject to start, just like relaxing into it and start shooting different ways. I mean, I shot this a million different ways, but at the end, I thought, oh, my god, is that brick wall is so amazing. What if I made that sharp? You could still tell what it is you don't have to be so literal and that's one of my favorite pictures in the book as well. Here's another one this's a bright, sunny day and it was against a old shed. It was nothing really special, but something told me. You got to make something out of this you have to do something with this and there's a puddle on the ground and the trees were reflected and I was like that's crazy and I just love it it's one of my favorite pictures as well making something out of nothing that was a perfect example you see something and I always tell people take a piece of something let's say you see this the scene and has buildings and then this little red ed let's call it a wagon let's say that has some yellow on it if that's what's getting your I work that and take a piece of it and start because you don't have to be so literal with everything and I think that is important in every every picture you know it just think out of the box and make something out of nothing this is another example of that this was a thirty old backboard it was leaning against the bush and um if this picture did not make it to the book but I love this picture it was a dirty backboard that had gotten rain and dirt all over it and it was leaning in somebody's driveway against the bush and it was like nothing really you saw it being really but when I noticed the sun hit the backboard a certain way I thought that was just beautiful and again not being little you know that's a basketball net this is a barn outside of san francisco again not being literal we all know what that shay pissed right comptel right away with that is this is that peekaboo streets house? I was actually there photographing her for the dog book and I saw this this hope and I love since it was all glass I thought, wow, just focus on the trees you know, do the opposite of what you're thinking okay? This is my motto and every thing I do, how can I make it better? And it could be from wrapping a friend's birthday present and have a tag on it I'm not kidding and maybe if I layered with another color and maybe use a different color ribbon every single thing I do in life is how can I make it better? How could I make that cover better? Oh, what if we put our and spying on it? It never stops and I think if you if you khun china had to think that way it can not help you but succeed whatever you d'oh this is a reflection of this picture is funny at a friend of mine tell me that that's the least favorite pictures of hers of the whole thing and it's actually one of my most favorite and I was interviewed by slam magazine ah which is coming out this week and he said, you know, my favorite picture is also what he said that that pink town car with that reflection in it now if I listen to my friend no again following your heart following your inner voice this is ah, I know if you guys have been in new york it's called the cage I think it's like a sixth and fourth and we had heard that it was, you know, really dangerous, but they have cool stuff and, um I love this is I know I keep saying it, but that was my favorite pictures in the book I just love all the shapes and the silhouette and we all know his photographers light, light, light, it's like location, location, location, it's all about the light, light light and like I mentioned earlier when I could I would try to shoot pictures you know, early morning, late evening. This is a sample example from battery park in new york and I loved all the silhouettes of everybody, same thing this is in los angeles and I I had seen it earlier the day before and I noticed that the light was changing and I made a note to myself the next days have come back an hour later because I had to go so ahead appointment I couldn't come back and I went back and I went back like a week later to l a and the hope was taken down and I said, oh my gosh, what if I had not done that and you know you might think oh, it will be there I'll get it later I had to learn quickly in this life that you know, you got to get the picture now because the lights going change or it might not be that man who knew who knew that that would be taken down this is ah sue birds from the seattle storm this is her childhood hoop in science at new york um I shot this hoop holly about two hours it was the daylight but this starting it later in the day and I noticed when we were leaving I mean, I liked what I had a head in the shadow on the grass it was really cool and I I don't stop until I know I have like, you know that feeling inside that you have something? Um I thought I had something, but then I started seeing the light hit the rim of this hope I'm like, oh my gosh, that is so dramatic, so stunning and I'm so glad that I waited until I had that extra feeling of yes, I've got it this is a picture in seattle it's over on near jackson street and after the cia did christmas lights last year and after the christmas lights I was coming home was a foggy night. If you saw this hoop and I meant to shoot it before today, just show you the difference. If you saw the super broad daylight in the daylight, you would never know in a million years that that's the same hope, the lighting and the fog. It just made it so magical. So I have to tell myself this all the time, clean it up, bend your knees, moved to the left, lou to the right it's work, you know? And even if I'm taking a picture of an iphone of like a friend and there's somebody walking by like, hold on again one hundred percent you've got to give how can I make it better? Even if it's taken a picture of your friend, why not? If you can do it, give it another second two seconds, thirty seconds. Do it, make it better crop when you're shooting that's a big one for me. Um, I crop in my camera and I know it's impossible to do one hundred percent of time, but I bet you'd do it ninety five percent of the time ninety six percent of the time um that's just not being lazy make it work the first time you know I used to get my insurance shot like get it and then I would say how could make it better and I make it better and if you see my pictures you'll see get that insurance shot and it just keeps getting better better than bam and when you have time that's a great way to do it uh don't use photoshopped as a crutch every picture in the book is taken from my camera into the book there's no, I'm going to make it cool by doing this and that's just my personal opinion I know there's a lot of amazing photographs that people do don that's their style and I think it's great and it works for them but for me personally because of my photo journalism background you know I was taught you can't set things up I'm a purist this is a personal thing but for me I like to use use it and shoot it from the camera even my impression is that stuff everybody thinks I manipulated afterwards that's right from my camera this is example of cleaning it up. I spent a lot of time trying to get this picture because that people jumping for it and it wasn't working and um waited for the ball to be kind of where I wanted it so again cleaning it out making sure there wasn't anything in the background and it makes for a really graphic place picture um, so ok, so we were told that we let me back up for a second a lot of the neighborhoods to get the cool hoops you got to go into some pretty tough neighborhoods, right? I mean, you can't go toe, you know, hodgepodge in the ricci neighborhood, you got to get some, you know, the ones have character and that's what? I really want it, and we went to some pretty tough towns, and we were in I think it was chicago and we are shooting, derrick rose's told the hoop, and this guy comes over he's, like, what are you doing? You know, it's not really safe for two girls to be out here with this camera gear, and we're like, oh, we're good, you know, he's, like, really? So we tell him what we're doing and he's, like, you really want to go to a tough area, you should check out gary, indiana, and I'm like, really okay and he's like, no, but don't go and were, like, running to the man, right? So we like peel out of there before he could even stop, and so we get to gary, indiana. And you know, I'm a little nervous, but I got my wits about me and we meet these kids on the street and they were so nice and I have to tell you they were some of the nicest people that we ran across, so I was very surprised and so pleased to know that people across america were very generous with their time and for letting us photograph their hopes I'm eternally grateful and that's a picture that I shot that made it to the book this was right around the corner from that when we saw this this crate, we thought we hit the lottery because way only saw one crate one hundred thousand images across america, and so it was not easy. I spent an hour with this picture and I didn't think that the woman was going to let me do it, but she actually agreed and that's a whole nother story and by the way, before I forget aa lot of these stories going in depth, we have a blogger on hope, the american dream dot com and every day I released a day from our trip on the block I think we're up to date twenty five or twenty six today until the book releases so you can see our whole trip um and it's really fun to see all the things that happened so ok, I have to tell you this story because this is one of the most things I'm proud of that happened, so I'll make this since quick as I can here, I thought we can't have a book on america's basketball, the game of basketball without america's basketball hoop the white house, right obama president obama's basketball hoop so I had four people I reached out to four productions pretty powerful connections to help me get into the white house. I don't know about you, but getting in the white house not easy thing I had a chief of staff of somebody pretty predominant person I had michelle obama's, photographer I had a white house staff photographer that I used to work with in the senator for a month trying to get me it wasn't getting anywhere, so can I say to kim on their own on mike? All right, where's my phone, I was like, what do you do on a sound or a cold call the white house she's like you're doing what? So this is how they answer the phone, the white house white house? Yeah, hi, my name is robin layton and I'm a photographer. Listen, seattle, I'm gonna cost country photographing unique oops and the childhood hoops of some of the most revered players of our time, and I'm wondering if I could get in the white house and president obama's hoop he's like what do you want to do? What so long story short? I do this for three to five times for two weeks every day and sometimes I'll get lucky enough to get sent an email sometimes I get lucky enough to get a person and but everybody thought I was crazy you can't do it so one day I'm talking to one of the players sister and I'm like I'm about to give up and I said, you know by any chance know anybody at the white house to you and she said, well, you think about it should you know what I do? I don't know what she does, but I know somebody I said text me remember text marymount now when we hang up she text me the email text me the number I call email a couple days go by your robin, I've gotten all your e mails I've gotten all your phone calls because all this stuff to her I I'm like ohio and she's like I just want you to know there's no way in heck this is going to happen this basically what she said and I'm like, all right, ok, ok, I'm not giving up hope so I get back to the hotel at night here here's a more information about my notebook next email you know, so the next day I get this email dear robin, if capital if we were to do this, how much time do you need? Mike kinney? We might be getting close and she's like I'm like all we just need five minutes from thirty seconds but fifteen minutes would be awesome. Okay, two hours later, if we were to do this, how many people do you have give me this might happen it's just going to be your friend kim ok, so way get to the hotel and we don't know I know I was so we were in west virginia she's like where we're going I said let's go the white house she's like oh you can't be like that let's get what's the address sixteen hundred pennsylvania she looked at me like I was not so let's go so we just head out to the what we're heading towards d c now I said let's stop a half hour before you know, save a little money not going to the city will be close enough if we get the call, we can go she's like yeah okay. All right, so we get to the hotel but for thirty I mean there had that we had our routine down, right? I went in, checked and she's out there lived in all the bags you onto the cart and I have stenosis by the way that's why it's not on the lazy my sweet friend takes care of my back for me so I'm in there and the lady goes may help us said yes two rooms one adult parent nonsmoking quiet room because they're working please no ice machines or elevator can you tell I did this for a month I know what I'm doing so she's checking me in I get this email thing today is your lucky day be here four o'clock tomorrow you've got fifteen minutes and I went oh my guys I'll be right back so I run out the door revolving door swing around and killed one thing all the bags like kim can we got in we got and she goes isn't that great of a hotel I said no we got in the white house she goes oh my god well they got like I went about gonna wear and we were spending each other around and it was unbelievable and while we were waiting for the them oh, by the way the woman was the deputy white house press secretary so you're the press person the person while we're waiting for her to come get us I had gotten a ball to take just was a prop and I said can I bet there's never been a ball of the podium before I should say, don't you dare and I went, oh yes I am and I set it down and took this picture with my phone and and there's a picture on the poster in the middle there that the balls on the ground and that some that's the carpet where president obama stands you know when he gives his address and these are pictures of a lot of players hoops in this poster I sell off my website as well. So there's a about fifteen famous players hoops in the rest americana so that was kind of fun tio to do that and there's me photograph in the white house who I cold called obama no, I call call the white house okay, so I get back to my my room and remember you know, I had four people trying I thought I'm going I'm going to take this in my home my own hands on doing it and the lady gives us a karberg cardboard holder far key plasticky cardinals set it down on the table I go get impact come back out and I look down on what are you kidding me? Come on, right. The key to your dreams is in your hands. Well, if that isn't the truth, I mean that was what if I hadn't done all that you know, and I just knew that I knew that that picture had to be in the book um this is a low res picture too, but this is the back of the book and I can show you that uh I don't know how lucky I am, but I'm pretty lucky because I've gotten amazing endorsements and blurbs for the book gary payton, hannah storm george best the new york times steve russian from sports illustrated all gave me amazing blurbs about the book so uh that I'm very, very, very grateful for and here's kim let me remember when you guys if you can google monkey something good member the dog book that I did that that dog or monkey ok, so I made this video because nikon thank you nikon came out with the three three d s o I d three a sorry I was so excited because I made love one have been told that I should make films that I should be a director that should be assuming photographer so I was so excited when they came out with the camera that video and I actually made a video of our dog monkey and since then I've had the honor amazing honor of making films for own oprah winfrey's network and I have one that's going to air I think september twenty ninth of this month on super soul sunday thank you own on I've got two more coming up a cz well so been very honored to have films on their show so make this video of our dog monkey and it goes viral and all of a sudden, I get e mails from around like world saying, oh, we have a dog that looks just like lucky I'm like that's. Great. Are you sure this you know, did you steal her from our e r? Mike? No, I mean some weird e mails, right? People asked me if I stole their dark. So I get this one email from a woman in atlanta, georgia, and this is before I went on this road trip and she says, dear robin, we have a dog in our shelter that looks just like monkey and his name is status at home, like I made the mistake of showing my partner, mike, look, this dog looks just like monkey, and she says we have to get that dog. I said the dogs in atlanta, we live in seattle, remember tom hanks and sleepless in seattle when he pulls down the map and says, we live here and the dogs here and she says, yeah, but aren't you going there on your hope trip? And I'm like, oh, yeah, but that's a month away, she's ok, so the sweet woman, candice, who we've become very different, uh, took the dog home this is status and kept him for a month at her house and foster domo make their cannon someone you don't know if I'm gonna get this dog but you know ok it's very sweet so she took the poor dog was a stray band kill shelter another shelter she I mean he's been through a lot so we go kim and I go on away we actually went out of the way to go through atlanta we go into the shelter and I see that he is and so mike okay yeah we're good we're going to get him and I'm signing all the paperwork and I look over and I see this beagle and he's like behind the fence would like twenty other dogs and I say to candace what are all those dogs and she goes oh there up for adoption to like really and this beagle looks at me with these big brown eyes because what about me blake blake and I'm like oh no so I pick up this eagle and the eagle goes like this right? I'm like honey can I bring home two dogs and she says you know what? We have enough chicken and refrigerator and enough love in our hearts bring him home meanwhile kim doesn't hear all this she's outside on the phone she comes in what's taking so long and she sees the penha dogs just like look at that cute chihuahua and I said, oh you're getting that dog I am not doing this by myself she's like what? So she's like honey can I bring home so she already had three dogs and we had to sue now we pull away from the shelter with three dogs and they had a they had a blackboard where you know they said adoptions today before we got there to have the number three after I got trapped we named the fattest travis they raised input for and then I got georgie we named him georgie for georgia and they're raising five kids to ella pebbles we put a six oh, it was hysterical and they took us to the pet store and we were like in, you know, zombies so this is pebbles and that's one of our two cards remember? So now we're traveling across america with three basketball hoops that we've collected three dogs and this is before the hoop spin and actually when we first started out everything was so nice and neat we're not after a month you're just like wow it in there you know, so that's georgie and there's the hoop and the other group is below that one you know, the one on that pole and there's just enough for infertility o s o those are our babies and we love him very much so I what in this with just talking about some recap on some words that but I love you guys tow tow walk away with patients have patients take a deep breath that was for me and just push for you know don't let anyone anyone anyone tell you that you can't do it follow that voice we all have it it's there for a reason trust it learned to trust her and her voice follow that inner voice hello remember white house you know kim and I when there's something impossible that has to happen she always goes white house and we know okay I mean that to me that is that is the most amazing thing I still can't believe that we've got to do that work hard go that extra mile you know I notice a lot and that that there's not a lot of passion in the younger generation today and I think it's because we're saturated with ipads and iphones you know I can show him something that's like amazing they're like oh yeah I'm like wow that was their age and I had seen that would've been like low but I can tell that there's a passionate thing missing where is that drive that passion if we can find it within their inside of us and find what makes us happy that is the that's the golden ticket right there believe in yourself don't let anyone tell you that you can't do it and I always say you know when I built this house and them in north bend washington I remember thinking can I do this on a single woman of thirty three and I started thinking about it well that guy did it and that guy did it that girl did why can't I what makes them special that I can't do it and I think that's true in anything in life you can do it you just have to have the drive at that the talent of course you know you have to know it might it might my good it doesn't be honest and if you can draw it have that drive and work hard it's an equation for success you cannot fail you just can't this is the poster I was telling you about um I can just show you real quick on here that this is lynette woodward's the first female globetrotter which has ever ever play for the globetrotters this is michael jordan's childhood hoop sue birds and diana taurasi that's where president obama stands when he gives his speech shaquille o'neal's james nays myth gravesite this is the cleveland cavaliers practice gin larry bird's shamika holdsclaw and reggie and cheryl miller's backyard and the book you can order it if you guys are interested on amazon dot com and there's more stories and blogged and trees on who the american dream dot com and the posters for sale on american dot dream dot com is not hooked american dream dot com so anybody have any questions after all that rambling, that must be one question. Well, how about I'll start and that might way do you have about four minutes before we need toe to wrap up? But one question from j l e was you know and we know how persuasive you are, right? Was there ever a time when you couldn't get permission to take a photograph whether like the owner might have been gone or unknown land owner did you leave a note? Did you shoot leaving our can you tell me a little bit of a question? Yeah, a few times there were not be anybody home. Andi, we have we we've got smart after the first time we would hand write a note hi my name and did the whole spiel handwritten I'm like ok, can we got to get a leave behind letter so quickly? We went to kinko's and I type something out and printed it out and then we would talk that people's doors and I talked about that on the block as well. On guy wanted the pictures that we did get permission back from was a tree in montana. Kim is climbing over the fence toe techno knock on the door and you know, there's dogs running around it's kind of scary and we blocked the let lee behind, stabled it to the tree by the driveway and they actually sent it in so I'd say two out of maybe ten that we left behind respondent and you know what? I just looked at it as if it was meant to be for that picture to be in the book it would and that's how I let that go so perfect that's difficult and then how many days like how long with total was the the trend was the trip well this trip was ah for five weeks and then I went out another time for two weeks and then we went on another trip for two weeks so I would say about three months shooting two to three months shooting time actually, but over a span of nine months because you have to edit and your plan and all that so so beginning to end nine months about two, three months shooting depending on how you divide that up great thank you when you were documenting like all of these block post you say that you you've had come out how were you like I mean you're like take photos you're any in camera like did you just have remember rule these two words? Kim carney my dear friends who went with me just happens to be and you know, I told you the most amazing artist ever and most most unselfish person I've ever met truly in my life and I don't know what I did to deserve her but she blogged the entire ship and would come up with these amazing details, like fireflies. And, like, I mean, she would scream when we'd be drive, like, like, what's wrong. Look at those fireplace like, ok, like she's, very detail oriented. And she blocked the entire trip. So it was. It was such a gift for many, many levels and reasons. So good question.

Class Description

Photographs begin as stories in your head — but these stories can become a fulfilling career. Pulitzer-prize nominated photojournalist Robin Layton will reveal how she turned a single idea into a powerful national narrative featuring President Barack Obama himself. Robin, who at 24 was named one of the most talented photographers in America by Time Magazine, will show you how to turn your dream project into a real, living, money-making thing — all through strategic concept development.

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