Sunday, May 4, 2008

Brooklyn Excursion with Keith Powell

My friend Keith Powell and I had a fun-filled excursion around Brooklyn, to take photos for his hilarious, forthcoming website. One might recognize Keith from the cast of NBC’s 30 Rock – he plays Toofer.

There were a lot of fun things about this shoot with Keith – the first of which is that he is hilarious. He is silly, in the way of a young, intelligent boy, and had me cracking stupid jokes and singing in a goofy high-pitched voice all day. That’s just what hanging out with Keith makes you want to do. He's super smart, yet you want to act like a seven-year-old around him.

We went down to a park on a pier in Red Hook, and Keith posed in places of varying levels of restriction, unafraid, and dedicated to getting the right “feel” for the hilarious art we were making. We stopped by my friends’ bakery, Baked, for some lunch and sweet treats – thanks to Matt for introducing us to the Whoopie Pies – they were amazing!

Keith, being a fan of irony, really wanted to make a funny photo of himself in a suit juxtaposed with a touch of silliness – like a helium balloon, or other random prop. (I always say you can find anything in New York City, but I now revise that by saying, you can’t always find a helium balloon in Carroll Gardens.) Keith spotted a snorkeling set in the toy section of CVS, and with a knowing glance, I helped him select a fluorescent green set.

I cried laughing when we were in the park, trying to get the shot of Keith in a suit and snorkeling mask, blowing a giant pink bubble. I cried. I collapsed on the sidewalk in the park with tears streaming down my face. I said, “Keith! I can’t shoot, I’m laughing too hard!”

Keith was undaunted by my tears, and continued posing in the mask.

Finally, we got a Flash-Gordon-inspired shot of Keith running like a blur through the frame down an adorable Brooklyn side street, and called it a day. “Working” with Keith was one of the most hysterical things I’ve done in my adult life. It truly made me feel like a kid, and I remembered why I am an artist in the first place – to honor that little kid that I have always been.

To see more photos, check out Keith's website at

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