ART/OCTOBER                                                                                                                                                   2000

                          ....thousands of players can say they  scored touchdowns for their alma-mater
                                                                                                                   ....I can say I broke my leg for mine.

WHEN I first was introduced to chatting online, my intentions were to meet people who would enhance my writing.  I had no intention of meeting a photographer...

       So when the little gray box popped up on my 15-inch computer screen, reading, “Accept” or “Ignore.”  I quickly clicked the “Info” button with my trackball mouse and viewed a brief explanation of the character who had invaded my screen. 

Photographer available 
in the mornings for chat.

       After being IM’d the previous night by people with names like, “Masseur,” who wanted “clientele” for massage, a person who went by the alias of “Nookie” and even one who had the gull to ask if I had an open marriage, I cannot say that I was not skeptical.  But something compelled me to proceed and before I knew it my fingers were uncontrollably typing a message to a complete stranger.

                                                   gmiller:  hi
                                                   dreama:  hi

        So it began, the first of several long chats about art, music, body piercings, photography, and I soon learned this “gmiller” was more interesting than the lack of creativity in his alias.

                                           gmiller:  minus t
                                            dreama:  what?
                                               gmiller:  that would be good for a nickname

        It has been close to seven months since that late night chat with Mr. Miller and I still cannot say it has been anything less than interesting.  I have learned several things about photography, he has introduced me to different types of music and I only hope I have returned the favors.  We have had highs and lows and laughs and complaints and I never thought someone I met online would keep my interest this long, nor I keep his. 

gmiller: I want to be able to hang a roll of 
Kodak 400 from my nipple ring someday. 
......I want to photograph a woman with 
piercings, I want to experiment with light
reflections, starbursts......


dreama:  I firmly believe that regardless of how mundane one may think their life is, everyone’s life is interesting and full of mystery.  What one holds in the black of their mind is outrageously fascinating to me.  We all wear a thick façade in day-to-day life and the Internet has made that façade even thicker.  Cyberspace is a place where one can be who they are without witnessing the shifting of judgmental eyes or hearing the sound of laughter.  It is a place where you can be who you only dream to be and never reveal that persona to another physical being.  You introduced yourself to me as a photographer.  Do you introduce yourself as such to physical beings in real life?
gmiller:  I usually walk around with a camera around my neck so they probably have a good idea.
dreama:  Gee, that's a lot like Warhol.
gmiller:  Good.  Of course, I have pictures that prove I know how to use the thing and I have business cards that break the ice regarding compensation.
dreama: Do people shy away from you when they see the camera?
gmiller:  Most of the time people just stop acting as they naturally would.   I guess they are under the assumption a photo has to be set up.  A lot depends on where the encounter takes place.
dreama:  Does it disappoint you when they do that?
gmiller:  It ruins a good photo opportunity sometimes.

dreama:  How old were you when you decided photography was what you loved?
gmiller:  In  high school, taking pictures for the year book, I thought it was special to be taking the pictures that my classmates would see years from now.  But that was just the photographic result of school activities, it wasn't until 1988 that I really saw the creative possibilities in photography...where I could take my ideas and turn them into pictures.  Capturing moments and creating pictures is a different thing.
dreama:  What happened in 1988?
gmiller:  Well  simply divorce gave me a lot of time to spend alone around the house and the studio grew out of trying to find something to do.   It was just me and my ideas.  When the ideas met with opportunities, the desire continued to grow.

dreama:  The music industry is one of the most influential products of America.  Does your eclectic taste in music influence your photography and how you present your subjects?
gmiller:  Music does more for the subject of the photos.  I’ve shot with “jock rocks” in the background one day and “Prince” the next.   My mood is created in the capturing of the moment; the subject of the photo can use the music to set their mood.
dreama:  Jock rocks?
gmiller:  Music played at sporting events.  Junior high kids love it.
dreama: Oooh, okay.
gmiller:  We will, we will, we will rock you!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
dreama: Aaah, Queen, I know it well.
gmiller:  It sure helps, though, when that cd case is leaning up against an empty bottle of wine…
dreama:  As artists, we have several interests and motivations.  What type of works do you want to share as a representation of your photography?
gmiller:  I like to think I have 2 styles of photography (maybe 3).  One is the erotic side, the other is sports.  Both are endeavors that push people to new limits. The erotic aspect is still largely untapped.
dreama:  Sporting events are something you frequent, do you have any stories or example of these limits? 

gmiller:  Sport limits.... obviously there are the physical limits, one must push themselves to play their game.  It is all those hours in the hot sun, pushing your body to new limits together 
with your teamates that 
make that last week so hard. You work hard, struggle, suffer together....and suddenly it's over.
You know all that grueling work makes that week special.  Then there are the emotional limits....the highs of winning the lows of losing, that aspect of sports has been played out and explained more than any other. 
Then there are the physical limits your body has to play a sport, injuries become more to the player injured. 


Injuries become thieves of that playing time and, at the end of a season, you want it back.   That time is gone.
dreama: You had a pretty good football injury yourself didn't you?  Does that ghost haunt you sometimes?
gmiller:  It's not a's a friend....thousands of players can say they scored touchdowns for their alma-mater.  I can say I broke my leg for mine.
dreama: Hey, I have ghosts that are friends…;-) friends who told me, hey this is your limit, go now or die!
gmiller:  I really missed a good photo opportunity at the end of last week’s game.  Long after the game ended and the boys were out of their uniforms and outside the locker room, my son and his friend were down near the field and he was kneeling on one knee looking out over the field and she was kneeling next to him.  The lights were still on, it would have been a great pic.   He reached down and rubbed his hands in the blue paint one last time.

dreama:  Even pictures can't capture something that deep.
gmiller:  Sorry...I could ramble on for a while about his last week.
dreama:  I understand completely
gmiller: Amazing grace
gmiller:  They have “Amazing Grace” on this cd.
dreama: I still get excited in June when these kids are graduating, I wish I could look back and enjoy it like they do.
gmiller: I think it is from “Braveheart”....Was that on that soundtrack?
dreama:  I don’t know.

dreama:  In previous chats with me, you have mentioned that you like to see how far someone’s limits go…Do you have limits?  How far do they go????
gmiller:  Starting with me first...I have limits.  Limits are like a slinky to me, you reach a limit then, from that point, you create new limits along the way.  However, you need to achieve some comfortableness with a newfound limit before you move on.  Regain your courage, or your strength, or more than anything else, BE INTRODUCED TO IT.  That is my goal as a photographer, especially involving erotic photography.  In your first question, you asked about a public image and a private image.  Erotic photography is taking a private image, and making it public.  Erotic limits are no good if kept to yourself (I think).  If I can suggest new things, which turn someone on, and they have a good time doing it...then we've all had a good time and the artistic result is there to keep forever.
dreama:  For those who don’t know, in your opinion, what is the difference between Erotic Photography and Pornography? 
gmiller:  Pornography is for sexual stimulation only.  Erotic photography is the realization of people.  People's fantasies, both the photographers and the models.  Erotic photography takes people to different places and time.
dreama:  I saw a good definition once, "Pornography is the degradation of the human body, erotic photography is the celebration."
gmiller:  Yeah well, some groups call Playboy pornography and to me that is a celebration of the human body. It all boils down to the definition....and everyone has their own definition.  Some porno is downright long as something is done voluntarily, without intimidation, well, I guess it has the right to be done.
dreama:  Yeah, that’s why I don't believe in banning, I believe in educating.
gmiller:  Viewers won't see it unless they go looking for it.
dreama:  You mentioned before that your involvement with erotic photography is still largely untapped, where do you plan on going with it?
gmiller: Right now, all the erotic shots I’ve done have been between me and the subject.  I’d like to someday hire a model and not use a friend, then with those pictures, make some sales.  If people buy the photo, that lends a lot to the idea that I am a good photographer.  When you are taking pictures of someone, and every 5 minutes they say, "No body better never see these pictures!"  It sort of dulls the moment.
dreama: Hahaha.
dreama:  A friend of mine had a good theory; if someone doesn't want someone to know something, they keep it in their mind, otherwise they release it.  Like writing unsent letters, that is really a want to let someone know. 
gmiller:  That is a limit right there, the limit of sharing the pictures is between the two of you only.  I want more than that.
dreama:  By the way, did you find the model you were talking about?
gmiller: I thought so, but she's busy interviewing someone today, tsk tsk. 
gmiller:  No really, I haven't called her yet.
dreama:  Do you own a pair of handcuffs?
gmiller:  I own 2 pairs of handcuffs.

dreama:  Photographer by day, corrections officer by night, in the line of work you do, would you say that you meet a lot of aggressive women?
gmiller:  Women have become more aggressive, regardless of where you find them.
dreama:  Women have always been agressive, they just are being acknowledged now. 

(several minutes pass because gmiller gets interrupted.)
gmiller:  Sorry devin.
dreama: That’s okay.
gmiller: Talking about plans.
dreama: Do you need to go?
(again a minute or two of “silence”)
gmiller: This is no way to treat Barbara Walters, is it?
dreama: Nope.
dreama: You'll pay.
dreama: Disregard that (I was just trying to win back your attention.)

(another minute passes)

dreama: Didn't work, I see.
(several more minutes)

gmiller: Now I suppose I’ll pay twice :-!?
gmiller: How about just twice as hard?
dreama: I said disregard that statement.
gmiller: :'(
dreama: Oh don’t cry about, I'll refer you to someone else.
gmiller: :-)
dreama: Your job requires a uniform, when that's over with, what do you like to wear…another uniform?
gmiller:  I only have the work uniform.  Any other attire I wear is totally impromptu.   I need to wear shirts with pockets so I can carry my note cards and ballpoint pens. 


dreama:  I'm talking on the phone, now.  I apologize.
gmiller:  Paybacks are hell, I know.
dreama:  Do you have a philosophical viewpoint on life or the existence of?
gmiller: Life takes people on a hundred zillion different paths....some are way ahead of schedule, some are behind schedule.  The secret is to determine where you are, make the most of it but still reach for new limits.
dreama:  With the election coming up, do you have a political comment or status you would like to share with us? 
gmiller: I feel that personal convictions on issues are being sacrificed for the sake of the political parties.  That does not sit well with me.
dreama:  What brand and style of shoes are you wearing right now?  What brand and style do you wear when you go out for fun?
gmiller: I just bought some Nunn Bush shoes.
gmiller: Black 
gmiller: The Seattle style.
gmiller: Nobody commented on them at the wedding…

And the moral of the story is…Never judge a man by his alias…the truth is much more intriguing.

Next Issue…Will gmiller’s deviant charm and wit convince dreama into a photo shoot???  We'll see...