Thursday, May 31, 2012


Just an image today from my travels - this one in London.
They had some good stuff in that shop...

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

villa necchi/

Aren't you in love with this girl? I am. I have been admiring her since I shot this at Villa Necchi in Milan. There is something that is simultaneously self conscious and unconscious in her pose. And the way her mouth is a little bit taking in a huge gulp of life, or calling out someone's name? I just love her. The ideas she conjures in my head are usually diametrically opposed to each other. She makes me think. And wonder.

Friday, May 25, 2012

yelena yemchuk/

A couple of my favorites from my shoot at photographer and painter Yelena Yemchuk's loft earlier this week. I have always loved how more is more with Yelena...the antithesis of me actually. There are layers and layers of reference on her pin board. In my mind taking it down would be one of the best ways to spend a day (and I think it would take a day) because you would go through her brain in some way and see the copious references that get sifted into any one of her many projects. It would be fascinating. As I shot she was working on some compelling new paintings for a show this fall. I cannot wait to see the final pieces...
Have a wonderful long weekend friends. I am heading to a barn raising in the redwoods, can you believe it?!? SO EXCITED!!!

Thursday, May 24, 2012

piero portoluppi/pt. 2

I have been meaning to share part 2 of Piero Portoluppi since I was in Italy but there just has not been time! So much to post lately! But today I finally share some more favorites from the building that housed his office.
Just back in San Francisco for a day and then I am heading out to shoot a barn raising in the redwoods! Should be amazing!!!

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

travel day/california bound

Just a quickie post today as I am jumping on a plane for California. Only to turn around and jump in a car to go for a shoot in the Redwoods this long weekend. Should be good!
This is a shot I never ran of one of the doors in Milano.

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

nyt.people watching/max lamb

My latest post of People Watching just posted! Check it out!
Click here!

Monday, May 21, 2012

note from brooklyn/yelena yemchuk

Just back in the US and am shooting Yelena Yemchuk's loft today! Perfect way to spend a rainy day...a quick shot from my iPhone.

Saturday, May 19, 2012

note from london/freudian goodness

My time here is London is coming to a close. I had so many things I wanted to do and see and in the end I was working on the next People Watching post for the NYTimes a lot longer than I planned. But gotta get it right.
Anyhow, it all works out the way it is supposed to. I did get to see the Lucian Freud exhibit at the National Portrait Gallery on Thursday, which was an absolute priority for me. So today when I was deciding what to do with my last day I just could not resist the pull of the Sigmund Freud Museum. I have wanted to go for years. I am fascinated by him and his office - the couch the chair. No photos allowed in the museum (of course I will be returning for a proper shoot soon), but they did let me shoot the ceiling in what is now the gift shop. Ernst Freud (Sigmund's son and Lucian's father) was an architect, so these fantastic skylights were his work. A couple more from all the Freud experiences as well. Both powerful emotional experiences for me. But the Lucian Freud show had me in tears. I saw some of my most favorite paintings on the planet for the first time.
Heading to NYC tomorrow for a brief shoot! Tomorrow I'll be in the USofA. How strange!

Sigmund Freud's home in Hampstead.

Something about this quote really resonates with me. Of course the rooms I shoot, I don't know when I enter, but I know them as intimately as I can when I leave. And I am there because I love and am interested in the people.

Thursday, May 17, 2012

note from london/bethan laura wood

Spent a really lovely afternoon with designer Bethan Laura Wood today talking about laminate and light. I kinda love her! Just one quick image from her tiny studio! Check out her work here or at Nilufar.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

note from london/the realities of travel

I've been thinking about this post for awhile. Some of you have asked about the daily things that go on on the road and how I manage such a long trip so today I'll talk about that. It is funny, but it is the little things...
First of all, I am a bit shy about portraits of me so I posted this image first, which I took somewhere in Milan, because the thought of a picture of me right there on everyone's Facebook feeds was not my favorite thought. The second shot is me with all my gear at the Torino train station. This was shot by my host in Torino, Maurizio Beucci, who is a Leica toting photographer himself. I asked him to shoot this because it is hard to explain what the reality of this kind of traveling is. Well this is what it looks like. My gear is heavy. This is the part that is not incredibly fun, but necessary. Trains are the most challenging because getting on and off take a bit of wrangling. I can do it though. but I am bruised on my shoulders and all over my legs (bruising easy doesn't make the situation better...) The other things that are necessary are the following. Staying in apartments, with friends or with hosts. This is key because you can cook for yourself and sometimes that is the only way to get grounded. On this trip for some reason my comfort meal have been scrambled eggs, toast and OJ. It started in Milan that first week and has carried over throughout the trip. The second key to travel for me is the "comfort kit". This consists of my cashmere wrap and my music, and honestly, if I have my music I can be OK anywhere. What else...texting helps...and Skype. But all in all, this travel has not had as huge an effect on me as I though it would. It has in the great ways. I have seen some of the most amazing places and met the most wonderful people! But no longing for home or anything. I used to be someone who could not be away from my nest very long and this trip, at a month, I was sitting there scratching my head and wondering how long I had been away. So I guess this is my life for the next few months. Heading to NY on Sunday, SF on Tuesday, Ukiah on Friday and then a bit of a rest back in SF. Of course there is plenty to do for the next trip in late June...

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

jesse schlesinger/nyt.people watching/outtakes

Here I am in London working on the next NYTimes People Watching post and I realized I never shared my outtakes of Jesse Schlesinger! So here they are, including my favorite portrait of Jesse and my favorite image of them all of the blue string study with that amazing triangle of light. A new People Watching post is coming soon. Just need to get it written!

Monday, May 14, 2012

note from london/hofmobiliendepot vienna

Just arrived in London yesterday and I admit it to you freely my friends! It is 3h30 in the afternoon and I am still in my PJs! Feels pretty good to languish around for a day.
But I had to tell you about the most amazing place that Maria Aubock sent me to in Vienna on Saturday. Wow did she have my number!! She sent me to the Hofmobiliendepot, which is basically a museum for Austrian furniture, but also looks at the era where the Habsburg monarchy moved their furniture around from castle to castle in long processions of carriages. So all of their residences were empty and furnished from a huge warehouse of furniture. Part of this museum is like a big furniture is amazing! I am not really one to read all those little placards at museums, but I read every one here and my eyes were wide with the slight craziness of this whole concept! Can you imagine how many carriages and horses and how much furniture there would be to furnish just one? The caravan would be a mile long!
The upper floors look rather in depth at the rish history of furniture design in Austria. Here are my favorite pics from the day. But honestly there are a lot more. I thought my iPhone was going to burst into flames it was so hot from taking pictures!

Love the mix of modern patterns with classic shapes here.

Couldn't ignore my cheeky little cherub, especially when surrounded by such serious faces. Of course what you cannot see is that he is actually pulling out his own heart, but I didn't want that part in the image. Not nice...

Shot in the stairwell, but just such good wallpaper!

One of my absolute favorite parts of the exhibit turned out to be about Lucie Rie again. I tweeted an interior of her Potters studio at the V&A awhile ago (!/lwillphoto/status/189459124235415552/photo/1 ). I was admiring this particular room and it turned out to be her home before she fled Vienna for London. Designed by then 25 year old Ernst Plischke. When she left for London, she deconstructed the room and took it with her and then customised it to fit her little London flat. She lived in this same space for the rest of her life. Love it!

Friday, May 11, 2012

note from vienna/carl aubock, architekt

As some of you know, for the past two days I have been photographing Werkstatte Carl Aubock. It has been a dream...but I knew it was going to be good the second I walked into Carl Aubock IV architecture office. You know how I knew? He has collections on his wall. Masses of the same thing. Groupings. I am obsessed with things that are grouped together and I have been for a long time. But Carl's collections are the best. My favorite are the collections of string that the postman brings around the mail everyday. He has kept them and they hang on a corkboard with a few choice (beautiful) objects. And his collections of harvest instruments is impressive and diverse. It gave me another push to hang all my scissors on my wall.
Back to London on Sunday after tomorrow's early morning floumarkt (flea market) trip and hopefully a little architecture tour!
Have a lovely weekend friends!

Thursday, May 10, 2012

note from vienna/

Excuse me while I take a breather today. I need an early night.
Here is a shot from my time in Torino, Italy. Back tomorrow.

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

note from vienna/Loebmeyr

Today was amazing my friends! I went to Loebmeyr's workshops in Vienna and was given an in depth and inspiring tour! I am going to include them in the craftsman project. This first shot is the iron working room for chandelier making. I love the huge anvil in the foreground. The second is just from their packing room. Beautiful quality of light in there. And the last is from the archives. From 1899! Loebmeyr designed and made the apothecary jars for the Vatican. How amazing is that?!? Their archives are so engrossing I don't know how I will edit down to what we will shoot.

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

travel day/ milano > vienna

Just arrived in Vienna and I thought I would take this opportunity to respond to a couple questions from the feedback post a few days ago. But first the images! When I was in Milan, I fell in love with the Milan subway. I love the primary colors and the simplicity of it compared to so many other cities I have traveled to. Three lines - red, yellow, green. Simple. The design is pretty nice too as you can see. As it was designed by Franco Albini/Studio Albini, that makes sense.

So what I haven't talked too much about is the realities of traveling like this but I'm happy to share. Maureen wanted to know how I stay comfy during a long flight. My secret to that is a cashmere scarf that doubles as a blanket/pillow/whatever I need. I am blessed that I can sleep on a plane, so that is what I do. Todays flight I only woke up on the rather hard landing. As for where I have been eating, restaurant recommendations, I have to be honest, I have no idea. I usually just tag along with friends and never note the name of the place. There were two fantastic meals in Milan during the Salone and I have no idea where they were! But great food and lovely people and I forget the rest... What I have found most interesting about this trip is that I have lost track of how long I have been gone. It turns out I have been gone one month as of yesterday. It doesn't seem like it at all and that is startling to me. I have always been such a nester. During the first book, three weeks was the outside of how long I could be away. But clearly I have changed quite a bit since then. I feel pretty comfortable any where I go. I do have a bumpy entry day, so that was today in Vienna. I was speaking to everyone in Italian and the internet wouldn't work. Just those little frustrations of traveling to a new place. But tomorrow I am researching a wonderful workshop for the Craftsman Project. And that passion and excitement makes all the little annoyances go away. Tomorrow is going to be good!

Monday, May 7, 2012

note from milano/look up

Today was one of those days where life felt sublime. I shot Achille Castiglione's Studio for the new book. On the cab ride over this morning I was so excited I was spontaneously giggling in the back of the taxi. (The driver was not so amused.) I wish I could show you everything (I tweeted a couple, so sign up for that and see @lwillphoto ), but I definitely wanted to share these with you all. I spent a lot of time looking up because there were glorious things going on with the light on the ceiling. Isn't it just beautiful?!?! These reflections kept dancing around all day.
In the back room I couldn't help myself, I just had to lay down on the floor under the Taraxacum light. I had wanted to do this since I went on the studio tour during the Salone a couple of weeks ago. Of course the tour was packed so I resisted, knowing I would get my chance. I just layed there and looked around. It is amazing how you see things differently when you lay down on the floor in a room. I noticed all the beautiful old hardware underneath the desks and marveled at just how much they have stored to the ceiling. I also got a splinter in my jeans from the floor, but no one said there were no hazards to this kind of behaviour. Soooo worth it! 
Tomorrow I head for Vienna!

Sunday, May 6, 2012

note from milano/salone del mobile 2012

At this point in my travels (it will be one month tomorrow), I am feeling like I have a mountain of editing to do. If not Everest, a modest Mt. Kilimanjaro. I finally edited through all my favorites from the Salone a couple of weeks ago. So here it goes...
The first three are from the Studio Nendo show I loved so much at Palazzo Visconti. As you can see it was soooo well done.
And the next couple were from up/market. That first of the door I was just in love with the door good is that? And the second is work by Simone Berti, and Italian artist and sculptor. And the last two by a couple of favorite designers of mine - Lindsey Adelman's candlesticks and chandelier at the Wallpaper show and Paul Loebach's vertical chandelier at the Carwan Gallery.

Saturday, May 5, 2012

cinco de mayo/happy birthday grandma

These two things have always been linked in my head. Cinco de Mayo and my Grandmother's birthday. So today, as I sit here in my apartment in Milan and crave a burrito and some California sun, I find myself thinking of her. She passed away almost 6 years ago but it is beautiful how the most important people never leave you. I love that I photographed her so much. I look at this image I know she is kissing me.
Today is rainy, with thunder and lightening here in Milan. I was hoping I would get to see the huge full moon we are supposed to have, but that may not come to pass. So I have taken this day just to be still. I didn't realize how much I needed that. In the midst of all this travel it is important to find a space to be idle - to just be.
This next week is one I am so excited about. I am shooting two studios that I have wanted to shoot for SO LONG. By Tuesday I will be in Vienna!

Friday, May 4, 2012

note from milano/chairs

Someone needs to do a chair intervention on me. I've been looking through my images and these are just my favorites from the past two days. The first is my favorite place to sit in the apartment I am renting - a heavenly little perch. Then a couple from my trip to the Museo del Novecento to visit the Giorgio Morandi paintings.
But I don't see chairs so much. I see people, personalities, moods. Chairs never fail to fascinate me with what they can convey given their setting, design and light. They say so much.
Have a lovely weekend friends. more soon.

Thursday, May 3, 2012


Hey everyone!
Just thought I'd write you all a little note and check in with you. Obviously I am traveling and shooting the new book. There is only so much I can share of that, as you can imagine. But I was wondering, what do you want to see? What do you want to know about my travels? I love sharing things I've seen and places I love with you, but I am sure some of you are wishing I would talk about x or show pictures of y. What are x and y for you? Let me know what you are interested in hearing about. There is so much going on that sometimes I don't know where to start. I haven't even shared my images of the Salone de Mobile yet.
Anyhow, just a check in. Would love to hear from you!
More soon!

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

note from milano/piero portoluppi

Last Friday, I was lazing by the pool at the Villa Necchi again. I was supposed to shoot it with my proper camera, but just sat in the sun by the pool instead (guess I needed a breather). Anyhow, I was looking through my pictures on my phone and ran across a picture I took  of a bike tour of Piero Portoluppi's work around Milan that was in the newspaper. Portoluppi is the architect of Villa Necchi. I happened to notice that his office was still there so I jumped on the Metro and I was there! It was in the aftermath of the Salone (read: half cleared for a party) as most interesting venues were (and still are) right now, but wow...I have a new crush. Here are just a couple of images. The first is of the elevator, with brass and marble walls. No idea about that fine statue, but it is working for me. And take special note of the floor - patchwork marble and it gradates from pink to grey! yes!