responsiveslider_lol_02 The Language of Light DVD - More
MeetJoe_02 Meet Joe McNally - More
inthebag What’s in the Bag? - More


Jan 17

In Friends at 11:21am

One of the cool things about shooting for Nikon a bit of late has been hanging with my Italian and Jewish brothers, Mike Corrado and Lindsay Silverman. Among the three of us, we must have about eighty years of camera experience. (They would immediately assure you right now that they each have ten of those and the remaining sixty belong to me.) We collectively survived the acetate era, and arrived intact in the age of digital. Intact physically, anyway. Mentally, the three of us are a few pixels short of a full frame chip, if you know what I mean.

I love going on location with Corrado. His presence insures that virtually every activity will be in some measure inappropriate, yet somehow productive. He’s also a good stand in for, uh, the talent, while you’re testing, what with all of his roguish good looks and magnetic personality.

Lindsay, as I always say, has forgotten more about flash than I’ll ever know. He’s the conduit for information back to the engineer dudes about what is happening out in the field, and what we need to happen with future flash technology. My emails to him always start with, “Dear Obi-Wan…” And I report back as a not-so-young Jedi about my misadventures and lunatic impulses regarding light. He is a wise and knowing counselor, which is why I did his portrait thusly.

The above is cropped to a square, because Lindsay showed up at the studio wearing a perfectly ridiculous pair of shorts. I recall asking him if he always showed up to have his picture taken while still wearing his pajamas. I wanted to put a backlight into the above frame, but we were laughing too hard to continue to work. Plus, if I used a backlight for Lindsay it might once and for all prove that he’s actually a computer generated hologram, and indeed, not of this earth.

The two of them together are trouble. I was teaching once, and standing in front of a class (that happened to include the former managing editor of the National Geographic) when Lindsay, who was helping out with the instruction, got a call from Corrado, who promised to pay him $20 to immediately go up behind me and grab my ass. Which he did. While I was lecturing. The class was somewhat nonplussed, but, as I recall, I gamely just continued to teach as if nothing ever happened. I think they just wrote it off as a some sort of welcoming gesture culturally unique to the photographic industry. Sure enough, by the end of the workshop, all the participants were greeting each other in this fashion.

I do know this, however. I have learned much from both of them, both as a shooter and a person. They are enormously talented, and dedicated to helping photographers climb the ever steepening mountain we face every day. (The both are terrific shooters in their own right.) They push themselves at the office and in the field, and work crazy hours to make sure numnuts shooters like myself can figure out which way to point the pixels.

And, they’re family. We’re like three crazy siblings mom just gave up watching a long time ago. It’s a good thing all of us found photography to funnel our antic energy into, or all three of us would have ended up as wards of the state. What can I say? When my photo instructor told me in 1973 to buy a Nikkormat camera with a fifty mil lens (“a poor man’s F2,” is how he described it) little did I know that shooting these cameras would lead me to find a couple of brothers I never had.

More tk…

Jojo Nihili says:

on January 17, 2012 at 11:32 am

Bern too long, mcNally. I’ll see you in class in 2012. ;))

Ivan Boden says:

on January 17, 2012 at 12:00 pm

Brothers from another mother…
How fortunate to have such great friends!

Jonathan Lopez says:

on January 17, 2012 at 12:06 pm

Haha, I don’t think I would stop laughing if I saw an instructor get grabbed in the ass during class.

The ‘juggling’ shot is awesome–you just use a rig and remove it or did you just have the right angle for lighting?

Karen B says:

on January 17, 2012 at 12:14 pm

Great post …to the heart of the matter with the pics to go with it. Thanks!

Andor says:

on January 17, 2012 at 1:05 pm

Anyone having such friends is a lucky guy – thanks for sharing a nice story and those great portrait shots again Joe!

John says:

on January 17, 2012 at 1:34 pm

“hanging with my Italian and Jewish brothers, Mike Corrado and Lindsay Silverman”

Which is which?

Michael says:

on January 17, 2012 at 1:49 pm

“Italian and Jewish brothers”

So why is it not “Italian and Israeli” or “Catholic and Jewish”?
Why is it that the Jew has to be identified by his religion, and everyone else gets identified by their country of origin?

John Fowler says:

on January 17, 2012 at 2:23 pm

Ahhh Nikkormats. Still have a couple. Every now and then take one out just feel the beauty of the good ol’ days.

Denzil Jennings says:

on January 17, 2012 at 4:00 pm

Great post, and a lot of fun to read. Those two definitely look like trouble, and a good time. It’s always good to find that kind of comradery anywhere in life, let alone at work.

Jason says:

on January 17, 2012 at 4:25 pm

@Michael, 1) perhaps Joe is describing ethnicity not nationality and religion/
2) Why do you assume the Italian is Catholic and the Jew from Israel? 3) perhaps these phrases are how Lindsay and Mike self identify?
Why go looking for trouble?

Thanks for sharing Joe, love the juggling shot.

DaveB says:

on January 17, 2012 at 4:27 pm

a couple… sorry Joe… you may not realize you have hundreds (thousands) of brothers and sisters you still haven’t met… and we are all legitimately claiming membership in that extended family through your leadership…

Michael Corrado says:

on January 17, 2012 at 4:28 pm

So, to help everyone understand the arse grabbing ritual, it actually started at a Kentucky Derby photo workshop where we were teaching together. For an number of reasons, I was loaded on morphine (totally separate story). While Joe was presenting to the students from a lecture, I was resting on the floor behind him. I wanted to see if this man could continue speaking whilst addressing these young minds while, unbenownced to the students, I was grabbing his tush. This may have gone on for about 30 seconds before I realized he was enjoying it. So, long story longer, I challenged Lindsay to grab his tush again for money at one of his workshops, and tell him in front of his new group of students, that the gesture lovingly came from yours truly. I don’t even remember how long ago this was, but it continues on to this day. And NO, I still have not paid Lindsay.

Thanks for the kind words Joseph. FAMILY. BROTHERS.

Michael Corrado says:

on January 17, 2012 at 4:29 pm

Oh yeah… Sorry Annie…

Joe Reitz says:

on January 17, 2012 at 8:17 pm

Great post. Great images and subject matter, as always.

I think the best part was Michael’s apology to Annie above, though! 😉

Darren Elias says:

on January 17, 2012 at 8:41 pm

Good stuff!

Rick Lewis says:

on January 17, 2012 at 10:07 pm

Joe, I love your Blog posts. When you talk about your starter kit, “a poor mans F2” it brings back fond memories. I started in about 1967 with a Nikkormat FS….no meter! I’ve been shooting Nikon ever since.

I now have a D3 & D3s and am set for life! Have fun with that awesome D4 & report back often:-)


Jerry says:

on January 17, 2012 at 10:12 pm

Mike is Jewish?? shalom brother! great post. The theee of you remind me of Moe, Larry and Shemp.but you’re all princes.

Barry says:

on January 18, 2012 at 9:21 am

Bought a nikkormat in 73 also w/50 mm. Loved that camera. Only one that ever got stolen.
If I saw someone grab your ass during a lecture I would laugh but would not find it unexpected knowing you.

Skip Dickstein says:

on January 18, 2012 at 9:38 am

It’s truly amazing we ever got through the CD workshop with these two clowns but without them and Dave Black there might never have been a workshop at all. About Lindsey, there might not be a sharper pixel on a sensor.

RobyFabro says:

on January 18, 2012 at 11:02 am

Great story and excellent photos, as usual!
Good friends are the spice of life!

Ana GR says:

on January 18, 2012 at 11:05 am

me muero de risa cuando leo tus posts! =i crack up
thanks Corrado for clarifying, anything to add, Silverman?

Ed Fasano says:

on January 18, 2012 at 2:05 pm

Knowing two of these three knuckleheads very well and treasuring my favorite (Young Frankenstein) coffee mug, given to me by the third, I feel qualified saying:

While the three of you, along with any other two do not a full house make, you do somehow make a terrific team.

Mario Plouffe says:

on January 18, 2012 at 3:06 pm

In 2009 i go to New Orleans and tto Preservation Hall where you test your New toy and it’s a fantastic place to listen live music.

Joe when i receive your post a smile came to my face because i know i’m going to have fun reading it.
Thank you

I Hope my english Is not so bad.

Save the Planet, the only one with Joe Mcnally

Ryan says:

on January 19, 2012 at 12:00 am

Great post Joe. You always know how to warm the heart.

Fernando Salcedo says:

on January 20, 2012 at 1:10 pm

Ha ha! I like very much your anecdotes around photography, the serious and the funny.

Giovanna Matarazzo-Mandel says:

on January 20, 2012 at 5:17 pm

As the Italian marrie to the Jew, I completely love your work, teaching style and humor. Thank you for the amount of info you share. It thrills me to know that you have wonderful partners in crime!

majid from Iran says:

on January 21, 2012 at 5:16 pm

با سلام جناب آقاي مك نالي
احتراما ميخواستم از آموزشهاي عكاسي شما تشكر كنم كه بسيار زيبا و استادانه است

Leave a Reply