Joe Hungler Meets the Big Doors

Joe Hungler and I recently discovered that we have a connection that neither of us were aware of. Joe grew up in Manchester, NH, and was a close friend of my nephew when they were both in grammar school. It’s the kind of thing that we seem to only discover from social media when there are friends or followers in common.

Joe is one of the many Lowellians who is committed to making life better for those with less. He is currently the Executive Director of the Boys & Girls Club of Greater Lowell and on the board of directors of the Cultural Organization of Lowell. Originally from Manchester, having grown up in the Boys & Girls club there, where he worked for 10 years on the Program staff, Joe came to Lowell by way of clubs in Nashua, Waltham and Worcester. Get him started on talking about his work and you will soon see why his enthusiasm leads to his success. 

Please visit their web site. What they offer kids and the cost will probably surprise you! From their web site: “The membership fee for the school year is $26. No child is turned away due to inability to pay – scholarships are offered to children who could not otherwise afford membership.“

Joe Hungler - Executive Director at Boys & Girls Club of Greater Lowell

Joe Hungler - Executive Director at Boys & Girls Club of Greater Lowell


Open Call

Suzzanne Cromwell, of The Lowell Film Collaborative and The Cultural Organization of Lowell (COOL), among her many other interests and activities in the Greater Lowell Area, has been conspiring with me for over a year to come up with a possible creative collaboration. We are finally getting our acts together and will be collaborating on a photography project that we are calling "After Hours Passions". Intrigued? We will be holding interviews for subjects in my Lowell, MA studio in October, and we plan to begin shooting soon thereafter.

See the details here:

Nope. Not on Vacation.

For those of you who follow my blog, you may have thought I had taken a road trip or was just taking a break to enjoy this New England spring weather. Well, if you live here, you are probably not buying the latter. This spring is not very friendly at the moment. I am still hopeful. But in actuality, I have been busy shooting and waiting for much of it to get published so that I can show off my work. In the mean time I can show you some hints of what will be coming out in print in the next couple of weeks, as well as some shots that I took for the Cultural Organization of Lowell at the city's 175th Anniversary kickoff event.

The Lowell, Massachusetts 175th Anniversary kickoff event consisted of a short parade down Merrimack Street, followed by speeches on the steps of City Hall and a cake cutting reception inside City Hall. The weather was great that day. Unfortunately, we haven't seen such good weather since.

I shot several venues and people for about a half dozen magazine articles that are in the queue to be published. Here is a taste, but there are restaurants, condos, personalities and more. Stay tuned!

Tonight I am also wrapping up my Photographing People course. Here's my crew!

And after much deliberation and procrastination, as well as some other "ations", Amy and I finally painted the outside of my studio and re-hung some work.

It Is the Season

You wouldn't know it from my recent blogging (or lack of it), but the last 6 weeks has been really busy. The uptick is definitely a good sign, from my observation point, for the economy.  It is tough to maintain a good blogging schedule when you are shooting regularly, but it is certainly a good problem to have! Another reason is that I have shot a couple of magazine cover stories in the past few weeks that I can't talk about until they are published. That's tough too, but goes with the territory. Suffice it to say, I will be mentioning them eventually!


I have been fortunate enough to have participated in a couple of shoots for non-profits that were fun. One was a fashion show put on by The Revolving Museum and the United Teen Equality Center, both of Lowell, Massachusetts.


And just a few weeks ago, The Cultural Organization of Lowell asked me to photograph Lowell's City of Lights festivities, for the second year. They put on a great hot chocolate contest among local merchants, a parade, as well as many other events in downtown Lowell. It was fun, but cold!!!


Environmental Portraits in New England

A couple of weeks ago I had the good fortune to photograph the Director of the Cultural Organization of Lowell, LZ Nunn at her home. We had originally planned to do the shoot in a beautiful courtyard in the back of her house. As the hour approached for the shoot, I watched the clouds gather, but we decided to go ahead with the shoot anyway, as we had been planning it for months. The metadata on my first frame reads 6:02:19 PM, and the last one that I shot in the courtyard, before it began to rain reads 6:06:20. Never a dull moment... Anyone who does environmental portraits and other location shoots in New England can relate. But the quality of light just before the rain was amazing!


We decided to move inside. The walls of the room to which I was led are a great yellow. I really do like warm and lively colored walls in general, and they are a gift to photographers. I mean what is more difficult to deal with than white walls? But while the light had been really amazing when we were outside, before the rain began, inside the house was another story. It was dark. So even though it was raining, I decided to put a speedlight with a warming gel and a bounce umbrella outside the window that faced the sofa to simulate late afternoon. I really like the reds, yellows and the richness of the wood floor turned out.

COOL, The Cultural Organization of Lowell, is a 501(3)(c) tax-exempt corporation affiliated with the Office of Cultural Affairs & Special Events in Lowell, Massachusetts. Do checkout their web site to see all of the things they do for the cultural ecosystem in Lowell. See you at the Lowell Folk Festival July 23rd, 24th and 25th!

Another COOL Lowellian

Julia and I had been talking about a photo shoot since January. She is often incredibly busy with events that the Cultural Organization of Lowell organizes, but we finally were able to set up the shoot last week. We had discussed a number of locations over that time, but what was clear to me was that the location should say, Lowell. Then there is always the exciting machinations of Massachusetts weather to contend with. In the end, where we ended up, was a location that everyone who visits Lowell has probably seen or walked by many times, and the shoot took just over 8 minutes. Julia is moving on soon to a new career and I, for one, have really appreciated her assistance in her roll as one of the important facilitators at COOL events in Lowell.


City of Lights Parade and Holiday Art Stroll in Lowell

Last Saturday, November 28th was the Annual City of Lights Parade and Holiday Art Stroll in Lowell, Massachusetts. I had the privilege of shooting for COOL, The Cultural Organization of Lowell, which gives me access to all venues and the ability to cut in line! :-) And they encourage me to photograph anything that interests me. So here is a small part of the documentation of my adventures on Saturday.

I started by visiting local businesses who were participating in the 2nd Annual Hot Chocolate Competition. I went to too many to list here, but here are a few that were chosen ... because I got better pictures ;-)  Unfortunately, the time that I had allotted to me to do this walk-around was short, and I wasn't even able to get to all of the places that I had on my list.

Dharma Buns Sandwich Co.

Coffee Mill Emporium

Welles Emporium

And here is the first place entry being created for me at the Second Wind Cafe.

Second Wind Cafe
Then it was off to the main event, the parade reviewing stand, where there were dancers, floats, bands...and the kids supplies all manner of cute.

And my friends from Western Avenue Studios were there!

Among the many who made this a success were the event's MC, Trica Boshco, and COOL's Director, LZ Nunn.

Trica Boshco and LZ Nunn