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Aug 6

In history, Stories at 7:26am

In the midst of all this stuff about flash, digital, and color, harking back to available light…

Got a call not too long ago from Carly Simon’s folks. We worked together once, long time ago. I was still a pup, basically, shooting for People Magazine, and just starting my journeys for LIFE. The idea of working for Geographic was still just a glimmer, unobtainable, in the distance, a photographic mirage.

So when the call came, I was like, she remembers me??? Huh? Turns out, of course, I was not the memorable one, but one of my pictures, even after all this time, is among her favorites of her and her kids.


Sarah (Sally Maria) and Ben, her kids with James Taylor. Geez, talk about the deep end of the genetic pool. Good looking family, yes?

I was nervous as hell meeting her. Trying to be all things, funny, charming, light her well, figure it out, fill 6 pages, shoot a color cover and a B&W inside feature in about a day. Deep breath.

She made it simple by being so gracious and lovely. My personal favorite is below. By the window, with a book.


Easy going available light, Tri-x at 400. You could get a lot done, shooting this way.


And have some fun doing it.



We had a great time up on Martha’s Vineyard. Still remember it fondly, all these years later. Carly’s been promoting some new work lately, checkout her website. Or, join her team.


Lovely lady with a big smile and an even bigger voice…..more tk….

art meripol says:

on August 6, 2010 at 7:29 am

you both look great in that last shot…skinny…young. Really lovely work, then or now.

Matthijs Rosman says:

on August 6, 2010 at 7:34 am

I really like this old stuff…
But, what’s that on your upper lip?

Maciek Shoewax says:

on August 6, 2010 at 7:36 am

Wow! you were young! :O


Thomas Lester says:

on August 6, 2010 at 7:42 am

Great story and great images, Joe. Thanks for sharing.

John Sharpe says:

on August 6, 2010 at 7:46 am

Joe…your work then and now continues to inpsire me. Hopefully one day I can attend one of your workshops. Thank you for doing what you do!

jussi says:

on August 6, 2010 at 7:49 am

Hey Joe!
What a wonderfull pos.. mustache! Grow it back.

Nice as always. I love these “blogs from the history!” that you do every once in while.

Joe f says:

on August 6, 2010 at 8:00 am

Your first two are magic moments. Shows another side to this music icon.

Jay Mann says:

on August 6, 2010 at 8:19 am

B&W is still Cool, I have been processing more and more digital B&W lately, memories of Tri-X and Polycontrast paper. Deep Purple Machinehead on the turntable, the smell of fixer…. :)

Sathish Mantha says:

on August 6, 2010 at 8:22 am

Wonderful post! B&W is anytime unbeatable!! :-) You are always handsome Joe! :-)

Justin Van Leeuwen says:

on August 6, 2010 at 8:28 am

Holy shit that’s an awesome mustache!

Bill Bogle, Jr. says:

on August 6, 2010 at 8:29 am


Who is the guy with the, uhm, adult film star facial hair next to Carly Simon? Was this a stand in for the exposure, and if so, why is that thingy hanging from his neck? Was that some sort of necklace that people used to wear? And what is up with the left hand in the pocket thing? Was this a posing technique?

Too bad there was no blog at that time to explain all of this. Had the internet been invented yet?

You really captured these two people well.

Bill Bogle, Jr.

Alan Matthews says:

on August 6, 2010 at 8:52 am

I agree with you about the book picture….so pretty

Deb P says:

on August 6, 2010 at 8:56 am

Joe, I loved this post! It’s great to see your earlier work, before you were a Photo Superstar!

Chris Martin says:

on August 6, 2010 at 9:17 am

Love the images – many sides of her personality realized in one day.

Absolutely love the ‘stache… you have to bring that bad boy back!

Chris says:

on August 6, 2010 at 9:21 am

You’re so vain…you probably think this blog is about you! (LOL) Thanks!


Iden Ford says:

on August 6, 2010 at 9:27 am

Great great shots and full of life

Heather (Heather's Dish) says:

on August 6, 2010 at 9:59 am

the window shot brought tears to my eyes…absolutely incredible!

Mike Neale says:

on August 6, 2010 at 10:02 am

Nice,…did U do her Live from Martha’s Vineyard DVD cover shot,…well done! Thanks Joe!

Gary Hess says:

on August 6, 2010 at 10:31 am

Great Story — and outstanding images. She has always been a favorite….. so it was fun to read about your adventures in shooting! Thanks for sharing this.

Karen Vaisman says:

on August 6, 2010 at 10:32 am

She looks like a very easy going person. Brings back a lot of memories I never had! Thanks for sharing these images, Joe!

Michael Ericsson says:

on August 6, 2010 at 11:24 am

Love the from the Archives stuff.

Gwen says:

on August 6, 2010 at 12:10 pm

One of my favorite pictures of Carly is the one where she’s standing in the doorway of that store (last photo). Now I know who took it! Thanks for sharing – you really do have a great eye.

Seth Hancock says:

on August 6, 2010 at 1:17 pm

Great PORN ‘stache! But, as always… Great work.

Mark says:

on August 6, 2010 at 1:17 pm


Nuff said, except for the wonderful images. 3rd from bottom is my fav.

Cathey Shaw says:

on August 6, 2010 at 1:32 pm

Carly brings back so many memories for me, love all the pictures. Thanks for sharing.

Rob Byron says:

on August 6, 2010 at 1:48 pm

Nice story and fantastic pictures but who’s that young guy standing next to Carley in the last frame? He looks vaguely familiar but I just can’t put my finger on it. :-)

Debbie Phillips says:

on August 6, 2010 at 1:51 pm

Fantastic, Joe! Your pictures of Carly are some of my favorites, too, and I hadn’t realized you took them. Next time you’re on Martha’s Vineyard, please come visit Rob and me. (We’re both still smiling from last year’s trip w/you to St. Lucia:-)


on August 6, 2010 at 2:02 pm

I remember some of these photos,I cant help it! Whenever I saw a magazine article that mentioned “CARLY” I bought it! P.S Your photos are exceptional. The best to you!

Alex Grace says:

on August 6, 2010 at 3:00 pm

I love these! Carly Simon was kind of a staple growing up. (My parents were major league fans!)

PS: Why is Tom Selleck in that last picture? ROFL!

Tim Rigney says:

on August 6, 2010 at 3:04 pm

She “must have been mad.” 😉

Andre says:

on August 6, 2010 at 4:25 pm

I wish sch’d have called me.
I really love her voice (and music) for more than 20 years now.
You took wonderful pics of a great lady.

Tim Skipper says:

on August 6, 2010 at 10:36 pm

Its weird. I never thought of you as being young. I’ve always thought of you as you are now, not old, just older, more experienced.

I’ve read everything you’ve written and even when you talk about yourself in the past, I still see you in my mind as you are now.

Great pictures btw.

Sina says:

on August 7, 2010 at 3:54 am

Thanks for sharing Joe… excellent photo.. I like them so much…

Jonathan Thompson says:

on August 7, 2010 at 4:10 am

Hi Joe,

Once again, more incredible work. It’s so nice of you to share the story behind the pictures. I love the reading in the window light, just lovely. It’s nice to see some B&W again, especially with your skinny younger brother in the shot.

Cheers Big Ears


Greg Brave says:

on August 7, 2010 at 6:57 am

I loved how you succeeded in conveying the mood… Carly is lovely and you did a great job showing it.

Mark Ghio says:

on August 7, 2010 at 11:05 am

These are just beautiful pictures of Carly. I especially love the family shot and the one with her curled up with a good book. Thank you so much for sharing these and for the storyline that goes along with it. I am glad you had such a positive experience working with her. She is such lovely person and a musical icon.

R Bailey says:

on August 8, 2010 at 3:19 am

WOW a photo younger than your Avatar/Portrait shot 😉

And as always stunning shots.

Richard B.

Ken Toney says:

on August 8, 2010 at 6:40 am

Did she sing “Your so Vain” while you were shooting. Just kidding. I’m trying to decide who is the bigger cat here! Seriosly, I love Carly Simon (what the hell was James thinking). :)

Eric Muetterties says:

on August 8, 2010 at 12:19 pm

Thanks for posting that trip into your past work. What a wonderful reminder about keeping it simple. The one with her reading in the window in B&W is what it is all about.

One looks at all these images and can feel her personality shine through. They are not about the image captured as much as they take you through the image, to her person.

Glyn Dewis says:

on August 8, 2010 at 4:10 pm

Wonderful to see more of your earlier work Joe and as for the moustache… :)


Scott says:

on August 9, 2010 at 6:26 am


You look like a young Matt Damon, minus the porn stash! LOL!!!


Dennis Pike says:

on August 9, 2010 at 7:16 am

That’s one hell of a mustache, Joe

Ingoman says:

on August 9, 2010 at 8:14 am

Omg, drew could u please Photoshop Joe a mustache too see the difference in one of the next avatar pix? Lol. Awesome!

richard Hales says:

on August 9, 2010 at 10:36 am

Hell of a ‘tache Joe. Amazed she let you in her house

Nestmac says:

on August 9, 2010 at 6:31 pm

That is a very nice story, when you take photos of someone and after the years the person still remember you. That is a great feeling. For me is the best feeling in the world, you can develop great relations with the clients that will last a lifetime. Awesome work Joe as always. Great mustache by the way.

Malinda Hartong says:

on August 10, 2010 at 6:42 am

When you photograph both the outer beauty and inner light of someone, really capture THEM! for who they are at that moment,… Those are the photographs that stick with them for a lifetime – like the first image – SWEET!
Throw “posing” in the trash!
Not everyone allows that to happen for the person behind the lens. What a great day that must have been! Obviously, since you both remember it so fondly!
That’s what I strive for – that connection a person has when they see the image & say “that’s me”. Lord willing we get those opportunities now & then – cliche but really that’s what its all about.

Phil says:

on August 10, 2010 at 9:07 pm

What beautiful images. Real inspiration for my black and whites.

Brian Laurent says:

on August 12, 2010 at 6:10 pm

How is it nobody noticed your mustache? Thanks for the very personal post!

Amy Parish says:

on August 20, 2010 at 1:57 pm

WONDERFUL post about Carly and kids! I love Carly! I love James too. I have started to love the music of Ben lately…..and yep, he’s every bit as good looking as he should be. Beautiful images…..i envy you, and maybe want to be you when i grow up. Amy Parish (Albuquerque)

Girish says:

on August 22, 2010 at 11:02 pm

Late to reply.

Nice shots. I even like the one with the horse.

William says:

on May 25, 2013 at 7:18 pm

Thank you for these…. What treasures! Carly seems so happy and relaxed. Beautiful!

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