I take notes with a camera.

Marshall Mayer Small Portrait

I often feel as though I'm an anthropologist studying my own country, trying to understand how it's changed so imperceptibly but radically since the '70s. I'm retired now, but I'm not satisfied with how things turned out in my lifetime. Thus, as an amateur anthropologist in America, I take notes with a camera. I'm also trying to spark the same interest in others to take notes.

If you want to more know about me, I have a resume. Or check out my note-book.

Image Copyright © 2010 by Marshall Mayer.

    Production Notes

    For those that are curious, here's what I use to take and publish my notes:

    • I exclusively use a point-and-shoot camera, nowadays called a smartphone. Thus, the cameras I've used for the past several years have no viewfinder: I only use the screen, which sometimes makes photography interesting as I'm slightly farsighted and often do not wear my reading glasses when taking notes.
    • I never use software to change the images that come out of the camera, nor do I edit the image while it is in the camera (computational photography, which changes with each software update, does all that for me). I don't crop images or even use the digital zoom function; I don't adjust the color or white balance; I don't change anything whatsoever about the image that the camera produces automatically. What you see is what the camera got. It's usually good, often very good.
    • I publish originals of my images in only one place, the take-note.com website (my images that are promoted to the site's front page—along with those of any other photographers published on the website—may also be published on social networks). I develop, manage, and host the website myself using the open-source Plone content management system.
    • I rarely make permanent prints of my images (field notes are printed on biodegradable newsprint), and I exhibit them only in appropriate contexts. With permission, I'm open to seeing my images reproduced in appropriate newspapers or magazines (print and/or online editions). Contact me for commercial use or reproduction rights of the highest quality digital files.

    Portrait of Marshall Mayer by Phel Steinmetz, 1979.