Archive for January, 2011

January 2011

Posted: 01/31/2011 in Webpost

Update – I have decided to update my weblog with a new WordPress Theme called Greyzed by The Forge Web Creations. If you are a frequent follower of my weblog, please email me at and let me know your comments and criticisms concerning the new design. Eventually, I’ll have a graphic designer create a custom and complimentary website/weblog. Thank you for your patience.

New Blog – The last thing I need is another weblog. But, yet! Visit

Archive/Reflection – Not that I regret where my photography career has taken me (thus far), but I often wonder how different my life would be today if I had accepted a staff photographer position at TransWorld Skateboarding back in 1988. “Dude it’s like Grant (Brittain), Dan (Estabrook) and me (Tod Swank), that’s it! You can stay at my pad and skate and surf everyday!” At that point in my life, I wasn’t considering photography as a full-time profession (I was going to college to become a mechanical engineer) and packing my things, leaving my family and moving to crowded Southern California was the last thing on my mind (at the time). Images posted below were created for Conspiracy Skateboards before, during & after the 1st Annual Colorado Funtest held at the Trinidad Colorado Public Skatepark back in 2003. Check out – Gulf Coast SKATE Review, a 1980s skateboard ‘zine published by Don Cudney, Steven Jacobs, Jeff Dalton, Shawn Thornton and many other writers and photographers spread-out along the Gulf Coast.

Longboard Rick – Bertlemann

Science Fair – Varial – “yes, he landed it!”

Rex Cook – Invert

Dana Buckit – Lein Air

Just Playin’ – I walk past these old & dusty Mason jars just about everyday of my life and occasionally I’ll think to myself, “one day I’m going to photograph those jars”, yet I can not bring myself to break out the real camera.

Jars. 2011.

Assignment/Behind the Scenes – Created images of (Anne Marie Padorie) AMP Diaper Kits for Eyla’s Imports a Denver, Colorado based company, created for children from newborn through the tweenage years. The company has expertise in introducing and providing products to regions all over the world that currently have no access to these products. Eyla’s Imports offers services including new product introduction, dedicated sales forces, logistics and business operations for its manufacturers. A special thank you to Kate Keltie, Organic Division Manager for her styling assistance and diaper expertise. *Final images will be posted after post production.

Assignment/Behind the Scenes – Traveled to Fort Collins, Colorado to photograph Jen Eichhorn, waxing queen & owner of The Screaming Peach – for the April 2011 issue of Entrepreneur Magazine. There is nothing dumber than driving down I-25 North at 75 mph while snapping iPhone images. After the photo shoot, I realized that I should have had my ears, nose and back waxed while I was there! Ouch! *Final layout will be posted after publication (mid-April 2011).

Longs Peak at 75 mph — Graffiti on South College Avenue — Jen by iPhone

Assignment/Video – The trailer for How To Dispose of a Body is finished and posted on YouTube. Also check out the website and weblog! “You’ll never know when you have to take out the trash.” Starring: Mike Walker, Amber Robinson, Maureen Moon and Chad Brizendine. Original story by David Von Kotzebue. Director & Screenwriter, Chad Bardon. Producer, Bradley Wicks. Director of Photography, Don Cudney. Sound, Darren Skanson.

Just Wondering – … many SARs I have accumulated over the years? *Over the last few years, federal, state and local authorities have initiated “suspicious activity reporting” (SAR) programs to encourage law enforcement officers, intelligence and homeland security officials, emergency responders, and even the public to report the “suspicious” activities of their neighbors to law enforcement and intelligence agencies. The problem is that many of the behaviors these SAR programs identify as precursors to terrorism include innocuous and commonplace activities such as using binoculars, taking pictures, drawing diagrams and taking notes. Photographers appear to be the most frequent targets of SAR and SAR-like information collection efforts. Whether lawfully photographing scenic railroad stations, government-commissioned art displays outside federal buildings or national landmarks, citizens, artists and journalists have been systematically harassed or detained by federal, state, and local law enforcement. In some instances, the ensuing confrontation with police escalates to the point where the photographer is arrested and their photos erased or cameras confiscated with no reasonable indication that criminal activity is involved. Comedian Stephen Colbert had a light-hearted take on the story of a man arrested by Amtrak police for photographing an Amtrak train for an Amtrak photography contest, but illegal arrests of innocent Americans exercising their right to photograph in public (like this and this and this) are happening too often to be just a laughing matter. Visit ACLU for more information.

Check It Out – I just noticed that a friend and colleague of mine, Sarah Clark is using an image that we created back in 2009 as a banner on her website’s Home page. Awesome. Thank you Sarah. You rock!

Humor/Comment – I have the utmost respect for wedding photographers, but occasionally you’ll encounter a not-so-bright one (watch video below). A colleague of mine will often comment as we’re packing up my trailer full of heavy studio equipment, “we should have become wedding photographers – two camera bodies, a few lenses, a flash or two and a cute assistant.” (excerpt from – First, wedding photographers are dealing with the general public. Second, wedding photographers are not encumbered by the egotism that is so frequently demonstrated among editorial and especially advertising photographers.  Third and most important, wedding photographers run their businesses like businesses.Debra Weiss. I create and market images for a living (take pictures and sell/lease them) – a very competitive profession; some amount of egotism and self-aggrandizing is required !

Video/Behind the Scenes – Traveled to the offices of Altitude Sports & Mile High Sports Magazine to create chroma key video footage of Robyn Carlin as part of a webcast pilot for Mile High Sports Radio‘sYour Mile High Sports Minute. *Final pilot might be posted after client approval.

Assignment/Video – I can finally post an instructional video that I help create (Director of Photography, 1st Camera & Gaffer) back in September of 2010 for Kraft Foods, Paula Deen and Philadelphia Creme Cheese. Traveled to Greeley, Colorado to create high-definition video of Mandy Heaston winner of the Kraft Real Women of Philadelphia video contest sponsored by Mandy’s How To video introduces Kraft Cooking Creme as the easy solution to cooking creamy, family-style dishes while embracing Mandy’s Mommy-On-The-Go personality that the RWOP community has grown so much to love. Incorporating shots of her two daughters scooping Kraft Cooking Creme into the recipes they make as a family will show users that this new product is not only creamy and delicious, but a kitchen necessity that virtually anyone can use.

2nd Cameraman documenting my vDSLR rig !

The “talent” receives treats for a good performance.

Tearsheet – A few images that I created for Brand Iron and The Denver Athletic Club back in 2009 are appearing in regional advertisements; an exterior image, an interior image and a styled image of food and wine. Josh Barker, Brand Manager.

Editorial Comment – A noted and respected photo illustrator (name withheld) recently admitted in a magazine article that “I received a bunch of hate mail for it, but I put up fliers all over town offering band photos for $100. You do what you have to do to make it in this business, and that was the right thing for me.” Then goes on to state, “Music jobs have really tanked in the last few years.” DING ! DING ! DING ! Did you hear that bell? The industry has tanked? Well of course “the business” of music photography has hit-the-crapper because young, inexperienced photographers are creating publicity stills (advertising usage) for $100. This is the Cause and Effect that most young, inexperienced photographers just don’t understand and established professionals are not helping by admitting their undercutting business practices. Fact is: Yes, unsigned bands have no money (no budget) and more often barter for their promotional photography. On the other hand, record labels possess huge promotional budgets; music videos start around $250,000. *FYI – Before the band Blues Traveler was signed by A&M, my friend Chris Mather and I were pretty much the official band photographers (Chris grew up with the band members in NJ) creating images for Photo Passes and Travel Expenses (they flew me to NYC for a NYE show at MSG once) BUT after the band was signed by A&M, the record label hired a more famous, more recognized photographer (from NYC) to create all future promotional imagery; Chris and I retained our Photo Passes at Red Rocks, but never received the “Bigger Gigs” we were originally promised. THAT’S the music business!

Blues Traveler 4 – CD booklet of behind-the-scenes and live images

Promotional Packages starting at $500

Archive/Behind the Scenes – Recently elected Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper and best selling author, Christian Lander are in the news again. Hickenlooper has taken office as Colorado Governor and Lander has published a new book entitled Whiter Shades of Pale.If you thought you had white people pegged as Oscar-party-throwing, Prius-driving, self-satisfied latte lovers—you were right. But if you thought diversity was just for other races, then hang on to your eco-friendly tote bags. Veteran white person Christian Lander is back with fascinating new information and advice on dealing with the Caucasian population. Visit DONCUDNEYPHOTO.COM for images of  ‘Looper and Landers.

Hickenlooper at the Denver Mayor’s Office  –– Lander at Crispin Porter + Bogusky’s studio

Update – When I released my 2010 Year In Review video earlier this month, I never anticipated I would receive such a response because of a 3-second video clip of live marijuana plants. “Dude, what’s the deal? Are you growing weed now?” Actually, the video footage is a small part of an ongoing project concerning marijuana as an alternative to prescription drugs. Before the Medical Marijuana Registry existed in Colorado, I found it hard to convince growers (caregivers) and users (patients) to allow me to photograph and/or interview them. “Are you serious, you want to photograph me smoking weed, are you crazy?” Then shortly after the state “lost their mind and control of illegal marijuana sales” people began flocking to photographers and news agencies screaming look at me, photograph and interview me; that was until several people went to prison and dispensaries began to get robbed at gun point. I could go on and on, but the fact is medical marijuana has become a big joke in Colorado. “Nobody cares if you smoke a joint.” – Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger on The Tonight Show.

Medical Marijuana ?

I Couldn’t Resist – I have come to the realization that at least 35% of the people that “follow” or read my weblog are amateur, student or aspiring photographers and although this web based-log is intended entirely for my clients, prospective art buyers, my family and ultimately, me, I try to keep the “teaching” and “commenting” (online) to a minimum , but when a good industry subject arises, I just can’t resist. Should I work for free? No. Never. Not even for my mother or girlfriend. Nothing is free in life, nothing. I’ll barter (for a home cooked meal) but I’ll never work for free*, never. With that said, check out this great illustration created by Jessica Hische. “They probably have a budget for you if they’re charging the client.” *non-profit company – for expenses only – twice a year!

Assignment/Behind the Scenes – Photographed three beautiful young women, Jenna, Morgan and Amy, for future Girl In Your Corner layouts appearing in Mile High Sports Magazine. A special thank you to The Curtis in downtown Denver for their time and hospitality. By the way, The Curtis rocks. I’ve stayed at many hotels, some cheap some very expensive and The Curtis is by far the best experience. I really don’t care about valet parking, fancy lobby’s and decorative bathrooms, I prefer to be entertained by my surroundings. Check out The Curtis!

iPhone Image Gallery

Paying Respect & Admiration – I’ve had a revelation. My father was a great photographer! Plain and simple, the guy had real talent during a time of expensive film and processing costs and the complete absence of instant gratification (digital imagery) and/or Polaroid. It wasn’t until this past New Years holiday  (years after my fathers death) when my sisters and I were editing through some of my fathers 2.25 Kodachrome transparencies that I realized, “Dad’s got some real keepers here!” Factor in the news that a recently deceased hobbiest may become the world’s newest and best unknown, I thought my father’s “documentation of life” images deserved a second look see.

Much respect, Dad, much respect.

Red Rocks – The Kids – Mom – Me – Air Force Academy – Disneyland – Family Gathering

Route 66 – Halloween – Christmas – Grand Lake – The Office – California – Dad’s Ride

2010 The Year In Review/Behind the Scenes – I had this elaborate idea of creating an introductory video clip where I have a dwarf punch a tall skinny guy in the nuts, but decided …. screw it, upload the existing edited video and be done with it. Thank you to all the Dwarfs and Tall Guys that answered my craigslist listing. Enjoy the video; I’m looking forward to making next years! View more of my YouTube videos online and enjoy more Behind the Scenes action. LOL. Check out this review at The Denver Egotist.

Watch 2010 The Year In Review on Vimeo

Accolade?  – 2010 was the fifth consecutive year that I have created images for Mile High Sports Magazine’s Snow Angels issue, the December issue is dedicated entirely to beautiful young ladies dressed in bikinis and/or lingerie. The majority of responses are positive, but a small number of emails and letters reflect the conservative cowtown attitude of “old Denver.” Thankfully the publishers and advertisers see past all those conservative insecurities or I would get stuck photographing guys in ties, shirtless male athletes and women in fleece jackets all year round. *I grew up in coastal Florida where women wear a bikini to the grocery market and no one seems to notice or care.

It’s Just Business – I’m not much of a “tech head,” but when I notice a huge spike in visits to my website and/or weblog I’ll do my best to figure out exactly what caused that increase in traffic. Nine times out of ten that increase in traffic is caused by a Twitter or Facebook post in which I have “tagged” a professional athlete, a political figure or a celebrity. Don’t get me wrong, I love Jane Krakowski and I love the traffic that she drives to my website and my weblog, but when a “CI” called and inform me that my image of her is being downloaded, printed and sold in Chinatown, New York, I was more than a little pissed off !! “Are you serious?” was my response. “I’ll email you a copy, dude!” – Click.  I’m still waiting for that email. I’m not convinced the rumor is true, but none the less, I immediately removed the image from my weblog and “slapped” a much dreaded DONCUDNEYPHOTO.COM watermark across the posted image; I hate watermarks, they appear amateurish, scream of insecurity and degrade the overall image viewing experience (my personal opinion). Yet, no one, but my current stock agency, is allowed to profit from my photography without further compensation. Yeah, right, like I’m going to sue some guy living in Yonkers and selling my images on Canal Street. Good luck, buddy!

Assignment/Behind the Scenes – Created images of AlloStem Strip & Cube, Craniofuse Strip & Dowel along with Morselized Allograft for Allosource.

Jill Bagdasarian, Creative Director. Newsha Nami, Marketing Associate.

*Final images will be posted after post production.

Getting Close To The Client – Don “Chimping”

Assignment/Behind the Scenes – Collaborated with a colleague of mine to create high definition stills and instructional video for Mark VII Industries.

Visit THIS LINK to view a Mark VII – Turbo Jet XT car wash in action!

Running time = 5:33 seconds.

iPhone Image Gallery

Last Day of Vacation – Feeling a little blue now that the holiday season is over, but I am looking forward to all the great assignments, opportunities and friendships that will arise during 2011. Happy New Year Everyone! *2010 Year In Review video will be posted soon!

Okaloosa Island, Florida

Just For Fun – Woke up at 5:30 in the morning, while on vacation, to create high definition digital video of a beautiful Northwest Florida sunrise. When I think of the gorgeous white sand of the Emerald Coast, I imagine 95 degree temperature and 95 percent humidity, NOT a 20 degree wind chill and cold offshore winds. Brrrrrrrr.

Behind the Scenes iPhone Image

Assignment/Tearsheet – Photographed Conor Casey, Forward, Gary Smith, Head Coach and Jeff Plush, Managing Director of the Colorado Rapids Soccer Team for the January 2011 cover of Mile High Sports Magazine. Conor Casey was named MLS Cup MVP after scoring the tying goal in the 57th minute vs. FC Dallas (11/21).

Conor Casey – Outtake

Archive/Tearsheet – Every January the National Western Stock Show is held in Denver, Colorado. During the 2001 show I photographed Chris Shivers (the 2000 & 2003 Professional Bull Riding World Champion), Luke Snider (the 2001 PBR Rookie of the Year) Kevin Stewart and about 12 other professional bull riders for CINCH Clothing and Rocky Mountain Clothing Company. Images were used for autograph books, PoP posters, billboards and semi-truck trailers; many of the riders reproduced the images on the side of their personal rodeo trailers. Cool.