I'm guessing at least half my readership never knew Don Blair directly, but indirectly, you probably do something today you learned over the years from somebody who did know him or was influenced by his style. He was a remarkable photographer, educator and somehow became the older brother I never had!
Loved by an entire industry, if ten of us who knew him well got together right now and started telling "Big Daddy" stories, we'd still be sharing the laughs tomorrow morning, and with more material to share. So, in keeping with Throwback Thursday here's one of my favorites:
Don gave me a warm welcome with a big handshake and smile and looked me up and down and said, "My man, that's a good-looking suit, and I love that tie!" I was flattered and responded with, "Thanks, it's one of my favorites." With a completely straight face, he looked at me and said, "Hang on to it - one of these days it's going to come back in style!"
That was it - he nailed me and complete with an audience of his "nieces" at the table behind him. Little did I know that short "gotcha" would kick off an incredible friendship that would continue for the next sixteen years!
14 years ago the photographic industry lost a dear friend....Wanted to share some words of wisdom from Don Blair...
- Quality always beats mediocrity! Give your clients the very best images and experience.
- A relaxed subject will always give you better more natural expressions.
- Every subject is beautiful and it’s your job to understand poses that are flattering.
- Learn to understand every style of lighting. Remember, you don’t earn the right to break the rules until you know the rules.
- Never think you’re too busy to help another photographer.
- You never stop learning. Go to every workshop you possibly can.
- Have fun and love life, your family and your friends.
Wishing everybody a terrific Throwback Thursday and memories as wonderful as the ones I have with Don Blair. There's a great line from Alfred Lord Tennyson that I've shared before, "I am a part of all that I have met."
I learned so much from "Big Daddy" and like many of you who met him, he's a part of us.
Happy Throwback Thursday!
And to the man himself, I love ya and miss ya, pal!