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Michael S. Morgan

Michael S. Morgan

About Me

My Photo

Opened my first Studio in 1972, after graduating with my Masters Degree in Photography, which followed a B.F.A. from Missouri State. It's been a great career that has taken me all over the world on assignments, and I've had the pleasure of working for some of the finest companies on product, annual report, and commercial assignments.

I spent one month in The Peoples Republic of China in 1987 representing Eastman Kodak
and their film capabilities to the Chinese professionals. In 1990 I documented the retrieval of Japanese Hostages held by the Iraqi's in Baghdad just before Desert Storm by the American Group called "Peace Wave".

I have also had the distinct pleasure of meeting some of the finest people from all walks of life due to my profession. I love my work personal imagery.

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Red Moon Rising..........

I had heard about the Red Moon on the news and thought it would be good to see. I got up thanks to Karen and went out as the Eclipse was just starting. Using my 300 MM lens I started looking at it to check the progression of the movement. It's very early in the morning, about 1:30, I don't have my contacts in OR my glasses on so I have hampered myself to some extent. I fumble with the camera, set up I can obviously do blind, and head to the back deck. The moon is up but looking through the lens I figured I was led astray by the new people...it wasn't RED......It looked black and white.
Over the next hour or so, the magic happened, the Moon grabbed a tinge of Red from the celestial
pond and BINGO....Red Moon !!!!   YeeeeeeeeeHaaaawwwwww  What a kick............

Thursday, April 10, 2014

In a place Far..Far...Away...

As many of you know we have been going through my Moms' home as she passed recently.....
In doing so we have come across some amazing images taken in the mid 60's, some of which were taken by the NEW and AMAZING Swinger...Polaroid camera. I must have been a sophomore in High School, standing with Scott, Gaye, and Rob on the lawn of the Jasper County Courthouse in Carthage. I'm on the far left, and looking at the picture I noticed a 1951 Chevy Panel truck turning onto the Square. I am absolutely positive that this was driven by Onis Hutchins, a local plumber in town. It is, upon looking back, pretty nice to see it running through the image. I bought that Van from Bill Barksdale about 30 years later and reworked the drive train, wiring, interior, chrome, radio, and repainted it a deep metallic brown on the body and a gloss black on the fenders and running boards.  It made a great studio vehicle because of the room and individual look. I had it several years and a guy dropped into the studio one afternoon asking about the Van parked in front.  I told him it was mine and he asked if it was for sale. I replied that everything is negotiable, was he interested in buying it. Answering yes, he asked what the price was. I wasn't really expecting that and I priced the Van to him. He sat down and wrote me a check, and said he was in town for a week and to cash the check, he would pick up the Van on Friday. On Friday....as the Van drove away.....my heart sank. The Van was going to a new home in Florida..........I've been looking for one ever since......a 1951 Chevy Panel truck.

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Solitude in stone...


Growing up in Carthage Missouri it was made known early on that I lived in the "Limestone Capital of the World", which for years only meant that there were a lot of rocks around. At 16 and a new driver, I found the "Quarry Quarter", a strip of road out in the country, that ran past a VERY large hole in the earth that Limestone was quarried from and turned into marble by Carthage Marble. The "quarter mile" had been marked off and that became one of two locations were you could find out how fast your parents car was. It was obvious that you had to run North as if you ran South you would run into the "T" at the start, and crash. You also didn't want to veer to the East as you would go over the rim of the quarry and drop a hundred feet or so onto a limestone floor. That happened once without good results.

In addition to Carthage Marble, another company, Locarni Marble, was located just south and across the street. Locarni furnished the building trade "Art Marble" of various colors and origins. Absolutely stunning marble was finished by them and sent all over the United States and Canada. Recently the company closed and I got permission from the Real Estate Agent to enter the buildings and photograph the working and storage areas. The buildings and areas are protected by video surveillance to prevent theft and damage from vandals. It is interesting that the cameras also have night vision. These are some of the images from the session.

Monday, March 24, 2014

Liberty Laundry

I had the distinct pleasure of photographing a new Laundry service location here in Tulsa. Liberty Laundry's facility is on South Delaware and is a "state of the art" facility. They offer a self serve or drop off service and this is the third location within the chain. I love to photograph chrome and this location is loaded with it. Just a really clean look that photographs well....I love my job...



Wednesday, March 19, 2014

WOW !!!! Topped 14,000 !!!

Thanks to everyone for having the interest in my Blog top put me over the 14,000 views that I have gotten. Who would have ever thought that such ramblings and misspellings would create such an audience.....Hope you like the imagery and tales also. 

Family history.....

A friend of mine purchased a 1966, 427 Corvette convertible, several years ago and I told him that I had the perfect location to shoot it at. We met there, about 175 miles away, and waited for the light to get right. As it turned out one of his relatives, uncle I believe, had painted the original sign on the building behind the car. After speaking with him a couple of weeks ago and asking about the car, he told me he had sold it. Once again an image becomes family history.

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Been gone...Now back..

It's been a wild first of the year...I have been working in Missouri on a project that won't be done till June, and have had no time to sit down. I came across the real definition of a Shoe Tree that I thought I should share.
There has to be a story behind this.....

Monday, December 23, 2013

A side note....

I got an alert that a car dealership, in Joplin Missouri, had a post for me. I went there and was really astonished that they had the audacity to alter one of my images. They added a really bad snow like gif to one of my images. What a bunch of trash ...unsolicited by me, and delivered by a car dealership. Absolute trash.......I took care of it I think...but poor taste and when you ask why we are suspect of car salesmen....there's your answer.

Topped thirteen thousand !!!

Thanks out there !! My blog has surpassed thirteen thousand viewings !!! I hope you have all gained something from viewing my visual experiences. It's been a blast...I've had a great life. Have a good Christmas.

River shooting

This last week we went to Branson for some R&R and of course I had my Nikon D3 with me. I made several exposures of different images mainly the river and I found another "flag" image for the up coming book, "Flags". We missed the ice while traveling in both Branson and Tulsa. And presently we're settled in for a family Christmas. Wishing one for everyone else also.



Saturday, November 23, 2013

The Leaves fell.......

It's happened again....it's Fall and the leaves fell.........kinda like clockwork. I'm lucky enough to have a neighbor that has a spectacular tree that took the cake for the brightest leaves this year. The first fell and I didn't get there soon enough....the rake got 'em. The next fell and I missed again. Relatively early, a couple of days ago, I got to them before the rake did and I photographed a couple of collections........I had no idea rakes got up so early to do their job....there's got to be a 12 step plan to correct that problem........

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Walking the streets.....

I went out to our downtown here in Tulsa the other day to see if anything looked good enough to photographically keep. I think I actually hit a true goldmine.

These are a couple of images and there will be more to follow. As a side note my webpage is getting close to being finished....I'll keep you posted.

Thursday, October 31, 2013

New picture of the Courthouse.......

I was home in Carthage recently and as usual I ran around the square and noticed that it was an opportune time to catch the Courthouse of Jasper County in morning light. As a kid I can remember being taken up to the top of it and viewing all around the city from the high vantage point it offered. I could see Morrow Mill, the Quarry, and the water tower south of the city. For a kid that was as good as it got.

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

I Don't Know Where To Start...

About 1966 I met a guy that as life ran it's course, would become a source of amazement, and appreciation. I can't put my finger on the exact time of our first meeting but the earliest memory I have is of him showing up at a friends house with a strobe light. The music was changing from the California Car and Surf tunes to the British Invasion and there was a change in the air. "Hippies" were
not yet on the scene in the mid-west but were slowly spreading from the West. Free thinking was starting to be OK and there seemed to be something new around every corner. Steve was in the middle of the change. He was an Art Major at Pittsburg State University and a painter, silk screener and had a good hand for drawing. He had started collecting Civil War uniforms as well as Indian Artifacts. As the story rolls on, you can sort of stand back and ask, "What to hell was that" and see Steve leading the pack into a new adventure. The first real adventure I heard of was Steve, Larry Wooster, and Bill Russell deciding to drive Woosters' hearse out to California to check out the "Scene". Obviously there are a lot of small towns between Pittsburg and California, and seeing the interior of a Kansas licensed hearse rolling down the road with three guys with long hair, dressed in Confederate and Union uniforms screamed for every cop in every town to stop them and ask the obvious......."What's up"... The trip took a LOOOONNNGGG time.

Steve and I would cross paths as the years started to run together and we could always start the conversation where we had let off. It was just a great friendship. He was an expert on Indian art and early western pieces. He would buy and sell items as he found the market and seemed to fall into treasure troves of important items he could fine new owners for. At one time he had many original Frank Lloyd Wright drawings for sale. He traveled throughout the West and Midwest picking and selling as he traveled. Spending some time in Europe he made a small fortune selling worn Levi jeans...only Fenimore could have done that at the time.

About six months ago I hadn't heard from him in a while and called to see what he had going on. He had been sick, and diagnosed with type 2 diabetes....not good. Another call later and everything seemed under control. Reading the Carthage paper as I always do, I was shocked to see his Obituary.
His health had not been good.

Steve Fenimore was a good friend, a source of interesting adventures, and a mentor of sorts. He made his living through his vast knowledge of collectible art and artifacts, connections with collectors and the business sense necessary to make a buck. Because of Steve many pieces that could have been lost through time are in the hands of collectors that will protect them and pass them on to later generations.

As with most of my friends in the arts I traded a photograph for a drawing of Steves' produced in 1975......I'm going to miss the conversations and stories but at least I have a piece of his original art.
Happy Trails Steve...............


Sunday, October 20, 2013

The Maple Leaf !!!

Wow !! What a fun but rushed time....

We left Tulsa about 7 in the morning to get to Carthage and prepare for the Maple Leaf One Shot. Typical ride up I-44 no really interesting items to see on the way other than the progress of St. Johns Hospital in Joplin that was destroyed by the Joplin Tornado a few years ago. It is going to be an amazing and much needed facility of the area.  They were one of my best Commercial accounts in the area when I was located in Carthage. I'm looking forward to working with them again once the construction is completed.

I had advertised on Facebook and my Blog concerning the One Shot for the first time actually. I was amazed by the turnout. We had a great time seeing past clients and a few new ones appeared. Very good to see everyone again. I am precess the images getting ready to send them to my lab for production. I'll post a few after I'm finished.

I didn't have much time to get to the Car Show regrettably, but I did briefly walk through. Amazing number of Hot Rods and custom cars from the twenties through the present cars we have now. I'll spend more time next year. I'll write more later concerning the day.

Monday, October 14, 2013

The Annual "One Shot"....

Maple Leaf is here again and YES ! I will be hosting the "One Shot Special" again this year. This is the one time in the year when you can have a Morgan Portrait at extremely reasonable prices. However, this year is going to be different. I have decided that the old background needs an update and a couple of more options available. I will be posting on facebook leaking out a bit of information on each post so stay tuned to your facebook account for more information.

The day of the shoot is Saturday the 19th, Parade Day, and the time is set for 1:00 to 3:00 in the afternoon at 401 Belle Aire Place, off of Grand avenue. Bring yourself, your family, pets, you name it,
they will all look great in a Morgan Portrait. 

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Fall Peppers......a longer journey than expected..

My last entry promised a shot or two of some peppers that I was really taken by. I walked into our local grocery and was slapped in the face by the color and "look" of a cascade of peppers they had on display. The rainbow of color really blew me away so I bought a few....4 to be exact. I had misread the pricing sign and thought they were more expensive than they were....the bill totaled 25 cents. However, that was my big purchase of the day. I have been very busy the last several weeks and I didn't get around to shooting them however enjoyed a new pepper every day as they continued to ripen........and eventually turned a solid red. Nice red but sort of boring.

I had some time the day before yesterday and went out to restock and actually forgot where I saw them originally. It was obvious that the store I was in was the wrong one.....no peppers. I was out of time and let the mission for a better day. Yesterday, through a process of eliminanation, I decided to try Reasor's, another favorite store. Wandering through I found a greatly reduced selection of peppers, however still pretty good lookin' as far as peppers go. This had been the store. I spent another quarter, another splash for the economy.

This is my favorite pre-salsa shot....I love the colors....

Saturday, September 14, 2013

Favorite time of year......

This is just a heads up for images that are soon to be posted...within the next couple of days. If you have followed the blog at all you have probably picked up on the face that I love the subtle colors and textures of peppers. I have several that I got the other day and have they have been a blast to have around. It's like having a visual book on the counter top in the kitchen. Every day is a new chapter. I was taken by the color of the peppers in the "original sighting" of them. ( Sounds like a war novel...Peppers !! INCOMING !!!! ) The greens and yellows were just amazing. As the days have gone by.....the plot has thickened and changed. It is just stunning. I'll try to get them photographed today. Advice-Go out and get some and watch....What fun.

Friday, September 6, 2013

Last one Zooooom, Zooooooming away.......

The radical designs of the 30's "Art Deco" cars weren't always necessarily appealing in my estimation. I think I found the ugly duckling of the exhibit. It had the biggest fin to "keep it stable "
at high speeds but I don't think that would be enough to make me like it. Be sure to check out the size of the rear scoops on the side of the car. I hope it could go fast as standing still it could visually cause a tire to go flat. A huge red speed

blur would be beneficial............

It was fun seeing the cars..we'll move on to other projects soon.

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Zoom Zooooom Scarab...

We are closing in on the last of the Zoom Zoomz with this remarkable Art Deco car. In the thirties Egyptian discoveries lead the headlines in the papers and the Scarab was directly affected in a "tribute



" design. How wild is this......great party car or kid transport. Drive like an Egyptian.....

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Cycle Zoooooommmmm

A couple of more Zoom pieces...we're getting toward the end of what I saw but I felt as though there should be a "Cycle" for the "Cycle Zoomers "out there. I find it amazing that these concepts haven't been picked up by present day designers. How cool could they be tooling down the interstate.

In the 80's I had a 1951 Chevy Delivery truck for my studio vehicle. It was drop dead good looking with a deep brown body and black fenders and running boards. I'll scan the one image I have of it and drop it on the blog soon. That is one vehicle I should have never sold. I love cars....



Sunday, August 25, 2013

More Zoom.........

As promised..
 


a few more images from the show in Nashville of the Art Deco Era Cars..

The green "boat tail"was the first Edsel from Ford.  Fabulous Automibles.
More to come....

Friday, August 23, 2013

Cars........Zoom...Zoom

While in Nashville I took in a show of Vintage Art Deco cars that were produced in very limited editions in the 30's. Total elegance and really unbelievable that anyone would chance driving them on "the road". I'll drop in a few images in the next several weeks every now and then.

Note the fin in the middle of the bottom car on the rear. I guess it kept the car between the bar ditches.

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Traveling Tennessee......

I just got back from a road trip to Nashville and Franklin Tennessee. It was a good time and as I was traveling I was looking for images with the flag book in the back of my mind. You never know when something will catch your eye. As always, rounding a slow curve I had my shot of America in Tennessee. Enjoy....

Sunday, July 28, 2013

Images from the road...so to speak.

While home last week my nephew Tim Putman, a photographer with a great eye, and I were driving around on a mission. I had gone out the previous morning to drive and just review my old sites I had used while located in Carthage for the 30 year run of Morgan Studio. I didn't have my camera with me on that first trip. By now you'd think I would know better...this was a redo excursion. I had been to a spring I first started using in the early part of 1973 and it was still flowing. As I went past an old barn I used memories started flowing back of families I had photographed there as will as a few individuals. I then happened upon this flag hanging on an old rodeo arena. It looked as though it might have had possibilities. On the repeat run I shot it and it occurred to me as though there is a flag
icon out there slapping me up the side of my head. I caught the one over the window in Arkansas, now this one, PLUS another I saw on the previous run. There my be material out there I have been missing for a collection of images. I guess I'll have to keep you posted.

Friday, July 26, 2013

Home for one of the last times....

As some of you may know, my Mother passed away a week ago last Thursday. She was perhaps my best cheerleader, telling me I could do anything I wanted to, I just had to do it. Growing up in Carthage I assumed that all breaks were received by those living elsewhere. London, New York, Los Angeles, or Chicago, never in Carthage, Missouri. I was wrong but didn't realize it until I was in my 20's. I think the fact that I even entered into the photographic profession was through the encouragement I got from Mom. You can do anything you want to keep echoing through me when I started my Studio in 1972 as I was 22 and needed a job.

Over educated with a Masters in photography and film I had no choice but to do the one thing I said I would never do....open a studio. I thought it would last three or so years then I'd move on to something more interesting. My first break came when I was asked to bid on a job through Joplin Printing to photograph for a brochure they were producing for Teledyne Neosho, a rebuilder of jet engines. I was fairly sure I could do the work but had never bid on anything with that high of a billing. I walked through the factory with the designer, Rita Lopp, and I gave her some ideas and I got some from her. The shoot was scheduled to last a week and it took all of that time due to the imagery involved and the fact I was shooting with my Linholf 4 x 5 view camera. It turned out to be a fabulous time and one of the images of the gears that I shot received a first place in the Missouri Professional Photographers exposition in St. Louis.
This was my first real break.....in Carthage Missouri.

I started college as a drawing and printmaking major....destined to teach on the college level. I got really tired of the smell of ink and solvents and the time it took to produce a plate and make prints, that were personal images with not much of a commercial market. I took my first photography class from Bob Johnson, an amazing watercolorist and was hooked. However my eyes were opened by Alan Brown the following fall semester when he passed on the printing technique of multi-negitive printing on one piece of paper. New realities were ready to be created that had to be real as they were photographs...............but they were based on the reality of the mind.

I know that Mom was proud of my accomplishments, starting the business, winning awards, serving on Boards of Directors of Non Profits, going to China with Kodak in 1987, and a bit taken back when I went to Iraq before Desert Storm to get Japanese hostages, but over all was pleased with my success.  I feel certain that without her encouragement I could not have accomplished all I have.
I will try to continue sailing on the ocean of her encouragement always remembering the sweet woman she was. Margaret Lynn Speer Morgan 1921 / 2013.

Thursday, July 4, 2013

Light seen...

For years I've  of "seen" light in much of my imagery, but it is a fairly abstract thing to talk about. For those that have never taken the time, or even thought about light, seeing light is a duh moment. It has no seeming importance it is just expected to be there. Why bother seeing it.

20 years ago I bought a chiminea to burn pinion wood in for the pleasing smell and to have on the deck. Last night I had it fired up and, as usual, was sitting enjoying the light through the trees. This is one of my most enjoyable pastimes. Light through the trees. The experience is enhanced with old tunes from the late 60's and early 70's, I'm in hog heaven. The light bulb came on in the attic and I thought I should share this with you today. Have a safe fourth and remember.....Light.....Throw...

Saturday, June 1, 2013

Memorial Day........

I have had an interesting commercial account for several years....one that seems unexpected at first. It is one of the largest cemeteries in Oklahoma. I photographic at different times of the year and the images keep their advertising files up to date. Of course Memorial Day is a very important day on their calendar. This image is from the last venture out, and will be used for several pieces I'm sure.

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Three Ladies.......

I have been working with an account of mine associated with the floral business and in the process of the journey I'm starting to look at flowers in a different light. It's been fun and actually pretty rewarding. This is one of the latest.

Sunday, May 26, 2013

Walking in Paris......

I guess I've never mentioned it in my blog but Paris has a special place in my heart. It is a city of found art, fabulous history and of course great food. We were walking through the small streets and I saw a window that held a particular draw for me. I think it was the subtle color and light on the bottles, or perhaps their age, I just don't know.

Friday, May 24, 2013

Birds nest Almost...on the ground.......

I was wandering around the other day and looked a bit closer than perhaps I should have at a bush. It housed the nest of one of the most optimistic birds I have ever seen. I say this because the nest was located about 4 feet off the ground and easily reachable by one of the cats in the area. Maybe the bird has a very vicious mate that will fend off all predators. But then again probably not. I guess I'll have to keep my eye on it and see how things transpire.

I have a commercial job coming up next Monday. Be ready for some new imagery from a long standing account of mine.

Thursday, May 16, 2013

New Images.....

I have been a bit hampered with my background stands that I have used for the last several years. The whole setup was a pain to put up, subject to wind, large and in several pieces blah blah blah. I took into consideration what I was shooting generally for the blog and personal tastes, and reconfigured the way to work with a new background system. It is still under development....not rocket science by any means....but these are the first shots. I can already see that I can tweek my light with a couple of modifications and perhaps influence the background depth with a couple of changes. Obviously this is the low key test....later on I will have the high key samples for you to look at.


Sunday, May 5, 2013

Sparks Flying...

I was on a commercial job and my client wanted a shot of the hardening process they did on parts they manufactured. This is a hardening process that  extends the life of a surface in a machine and will have to be smoothed in the next process.

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Colorado revisited

Here are a couple of images I captured in the Colorado mountains. I find shooting there almost as exciting as in Georgia. Still liking water and quiet light.


On one of my recent trips through New Mexico I thought I'd take a shot at the moon, just for the record so to speak. I liked the terrain and thought I could pull out the feeling I had of being in the middle of the open spaces. The enlarged print is a bit grainy, Tri-X all over again,
but I still think it holds together pretty well.

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

From our pond...

I just like the look.......

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Arkansas travel........

I was traveling through the blue highways of Arkansas and came upon this door. Love the texture and implied patriotism of the setting. It is as American as it gets in the backwoods.

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Spring again.....

We have a pair of doves that have remained with us for several years. We see them together and hear them early in the morning and in the evening at dusk cooing to each other. We are their "hang out" location.