Havana, Cuba

Just weeks before the Covid-19 pandemic hit the US and everything more or less shut down for a few months, I was lucky to get to squeeze one last trip out of 2020. I spent a week in Havana, Cuba —staying in a hostel that doubled as a convent and was run by the nuns. I spent my days and nights exploring Havana and the surrounding areas — meeting other photographers, artists, dancers, boxers, fishers, farmers, and chefs. I loved photographing this historic city — however briefly.

Then I got home, and everything changed. My 2020 calendar got wiped clean, as almost every assignment and project I had that involved international travel got put on hold or outright canceled. I kept busy shooting small local advertising jobs and headshots for several months and put completing these images on the back burner for too long. But as 2020 turned into 2021, I decided that it was time to sit down and revisit the rest of this library of images, finish the collection, and share them — It felt like the right time finally.

After spending the last year homebound, I miss travel. I’ve been looking back fondly on this last trip: Early morning coffee on the Plaza Vieja, getting demolished by a giant wave while I was walking along the Malecon, incredible food and drinks at the Paladares I ate at, navigating the narrow and rickety network of docks that seemed to go on forever at Cojimar village, and spending several nights at my new favorite bar — El Dandy.


Hopefully, when things return to some semblance of normalcy, I’ll get to make a more substantial return trip to create more of these portraits of Havana. In the meantime — enjoy!

DAILIES.3.11.2013

Tom Tubiolo and Devin Caskie visiting Victory Studios

Dailies is a monthly collection of the images I take in my day to day life: casual snaps and test shots of friends and family, unguarded behind the scenes images of my subjects, Polaroids, Instagrams, and documentation of my myriad and sordid adventures. 

A look back at my recent trip to Seattle, mobile images from an assignment with Hero Design, and a rundown on who has been visiting the studio over the last month.

Clockwise from top left:

1. Musician Thomas Tubiolo after we wrapped a shoot developing some new PR and Press images for him.

2. Devin Caskie dropped by the studio with some much appreciated color to help me and my intern out with a small project.

Dailies images of the team from Hero Design

Clockwise from top right:

3. Mark Brickey of Hero Design Studio – I am working on a cool project and creating some images for the awfully talented  team from Hero right now.

4. A more lo-fi look for Mark – sans glasses.

5. Beth Manos Brickey – the other super talented half of Hero and author of one of my favorite food blogs; Tasty Yummies

Dailies from the Ace Hotel in Seattle

Clockwise from top left:

6. Outside of my room at the Ace Hotel in Seattle. I was out west a bit this month for a workshop and to meet up with some friends. This friendly guy greeted me every morning.

7. A colorful take on the lobby at the Ace – I just loved this exceptionally stylish and affordable hotel.

8. Kain Vuong, one of the new friends I made on this trip  –  We initially met up at T5 at JFK and ended up hanging out for most of the weekend since we ended up being on the same flight from NY and staying in the same hotel once we arrived in Seattle.

9. My deer themed room at the Ace – which became quite the office / refuge while I was there.

10. I am usually loathe to post food Instagrams, but these red velvet pancakes were too good for me not to share – and as we all know, the rules don’t apply when it comes to red velvet.

Images from UnWorkshop in Seattle WA

Clockwise from top left:

11. One of the reasons I was in Seattle was to check out the UnWorkshop event that John Keatley was hosting. I ended up making a ton of talented new friends there and learning a ton of new info – both from the other attendees and those that were part of the event,

12. John Keatley – photography badass. Check out his work here.

13. One of the highlights of UnWorkshop was an amazing Mariachi band who showed up un-announced and played some amazing music for us. John certainly knows how to throw a party.

14. Another one of the mariachis rocking out.

15. A small spelling error that became a running joke that became an idea for a brand change. Shauna from Nubbytwiglet.com put it best “Luke Chopping: Photographer  – Blogger – Logger”

Dailies images from Victory Studios

Clockwise from top right:

16. A shot I grabbed of Devin while she was working on some test shots with my intern Lisa.

17. Anna Dominick was visiting Victory studios with her sister Lydia this day, but I will be working on a project with her soon.

18. I don’t think my new intern Lisa was prepared for how friendly Lydia Dominick is. You can see some images I shot of Lydia in a recent issue of The Hockey News’ Fully Loaded Magazine. 

19. Yours truly and Lydia

20. I was really excited to have Leo Chan in the studio for a series of portraits I am working on. Keep an eye out for some of the pictures we shot that day to début on this blog soon.