From Photo to Song

Most of my songs are a combination of three things:

  • A photograph
  • How I felt when I took the photograph
  • A real life story but turned universal and which either directly or indirectly matches the photograph

This blog celebrates both nature photography and still life photography where I make puppet theatre sets with scraps of wood or where I show some of my past assemblage art. One area I’d love to get back to is street photography in cities and towns. I have shared some of my old European street photography, but probably not enough as that was done using film way back in the 80’s.

Sometimes the words are song lyrics, sometimes there is no music and the words are trying to pass themselves off as poetry. Words have a tendency to do that.

My intent with this blog was to meld multi-media together. I had some ideas for doing videos but have abandoned that as I enjoy good old still photography much more.

One in Five

The Wonder of Imagination
I've surveyed my scene
Counted my song hive
The songs I'm proud of
Is One in Five

One in Five
That's Twenty Percent
You have to write a lot
To make something decent

Some are decent
Some on the descent
Some are hell bent
Some seem heaven sent

The Confusion League

There are 3 major parts in 3 vertical lines
I've surveyed the scene
My crime of art
The best of all
Have just three parts

Those that hit
The cutting room floor
Were way too busy
Had too much more

Mental clutter
Leads to fatigue
A one way ticket
To the Confusion League


This rule of thumb
Works for all
Assemblage, Photography, Music
My new years call
There are 3 major parts in a diagonal line

This “epiphany” is not new for me. In my business writing, I’ve noticed people have less of an attention span than ever. You have to make your point quickly, then not dawdle or ramble on.

I was taught about the power of three many years ago in my photography classes. It does apply to Assemblage and Pop Music. If I don’t use three – my goal is two or one. Sometimes an object is so strong on its own.

Let 2022 be the year of keeping it simple and effective!

Three is The Golden Mean

In photography
The rule of thirds
Usually works
Sometimes absurd

When writing
Make three points
Is your strong suit
Sometimes disjoint

When building
The thing that's strong
Is the triangle
Sometimes its wrong


Its not always perfect
But most times its right
Three is The Golden Mean
It shines really bright

I’m going back over my best compositions – Music, Photography, Assemblage and Writing and the “Rule of Thirds” does usually work. There are exceptions – I can think of a couple photographers who purposely broke this rule and made great compositions, but for me its a great thing to try to remember in 2022.

I would argue that less is more – that if you break the rule – then use less than three strong parts in your composition.

There are two poets who practiced the (very) long form poetry – William Carlos Williams (Patterson) and various Jack Kerouac long poems. Every time I’ve tried to read these long form poems I stop after the first good part because I find they always run out of gas.

I love Shakespeare’s comment “Brevity is the soul of wit” and I try to follow that advice.

Have a Beaux Arts New Year!

Seek Beauty and Kindness in the New Year – and may Peace be With You!

Beaux Arts Lamps, San Francisco
Beaux Arts in English
Means Fine Art
Which is the best thing
For a Great New Years Start

I've been a Computer Geek
In my long career
But my secret love
Has been Art and Music all these years

"Don't quit your day job "
I was told
I listened (and glad I did)
Cuz life (seems) bought and sold . . .

My joke on "The Man"
Is my "other plan"
Art was always in my Heart
That's how I stuck it to the man!

Have yourself a great year
Filled with Art,
Peace, Love and Good Cheer!