I posted this picture of Robert Pattinson, photographed by the brilliant Ryan McGinley to Twitter. It got more RTs and likes than anything I’ve ever shared of my own. Fame is powerful. As are, I suppose, pretty people, who have been well shot.

I’m curious if there’s something to be discovered in this? Is there a way to link to this kind of work and start a more interesting conversation? Or is it just going to get shares and hearts from people who are enamored of “Edward”?

For now, making some connections, it made me check out the work of Mike Brodie again. It’s been a while and I wondered where he went.

His art is like McGinley’s, but the story is more engaging. Brodie was given a Polaroid camera and shot his journey through life for four years, from 2004-2008. His 35mm images were gathered into a show and photobook in 2013, A Period of Juvenile Prosperity, that won Best of the Year awards from Artforum, the NYT, The Guardian and others. But regardless of the accolades, he had quit making pictures years before and didn’t return. He had gone back to college, an automotive trade school in Nashville, to learn how to rebuild diesel engines. That’s what he does now.

I’d like to meet Mike Brodie someday, maybe years down the line, to talk about life, art, work, and the paths we choose. It would be amazing to shoot a documentary about him then and now. To have a long conversation and make something out of it. I think Matthew Ryan might be the person to add the music.

So, that’s where the half-submerged glamour shot of a great actor took me today. If anyone wants to chase this one or talk about their own passions, pursuits and amazingly unexpected journey, give me a shout.

Nick ChildsComment