Eat The Darkness

by matthew ratajczak

Archive for November 2009


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I recently put together these collage/grids of close-up and macro photographs made at three area botanical gardens. The first one is from Tropical Ranch Botanical Gardens in Stuart, Fla., next is Heathcote Botanical Gardens in Fort Pierce, Fla., and the third is from McKee Botanical Garden in Vero Beach, Fla. Unfortunately, it’s hard to see all the intricate details and textures in the images on the screen in this format. But you get the idea. I’m Planning on making some big prints of a select few. I really like the top middle image in the first grid. Reminds me of fireworks. These flowers are about the size of a nickel. Enjoy.


Tropical Ranch Botanical Gardens

Copyright © 2009 Matthew Ratajczak/Scripps Newspapers


Heathcote Botanical Gardens

Copyright © 2009 Matthew Ratajczak/Scripps Newspapers

McKee Botanical Garden

Copyright © 2009 Matthew Ratajczak/Scripps Newspapers





Written by eatthedarkness

November 24, 2009 at 2:10 PM

Posted in Photography


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Copyright © 2009 Matthew Ratajczak/Scripps. All Rights Reserved.

Had the pleasure of spending a little time with the iconic Burt Reynolds recently at his museum (yes, of course he has his own museum) in Jupiter, Fla. He was a gracious gentleman, friendly, charming, funny and full of stories. Basically, an all around cool motherfucker. If you had to give a visual definition of masculinity, I think Burt would be in the mix. I grew up watching Reynolds in movies like Smokey and the BanditCannonball Run, Deliverance, Sharkey’s Machine and later as Jack Horner in Boogie Nights. It’s hard to believe he’s 73-years-old. Long live the Bandit!

Written by eatthedarkness

November 18, 2009 at 12:41 AM

Kool Thing(s)

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Here’s a couple things I’ve been looking at and want to share.

I’ve been reading Milwaukee-based photographer Kevin Miyazaki’s blog ever since I discovered there were photographers blogging. Although he seems to purposely let a lot of his fresh produce and other food items shrivel, become moldy, over ripen and rot all for the sake of photography (see the ordinary and detailed photographic gems he discovers and records throughout his home in his reoccurring “within reach” posts), his blog is on my short list of go-to sites I spend too much time with on a daily or weekly basis.

Now I have to add one more Miyazaki creation to the list. To compliment the junior-level photography course he is teaching at the Milwaukee Institute of Art & Design (MIAD), he has established a blog called MIAD-FA382 primarily for his students, but available for all of us to glean over as well. Although I remember reading about the blog on Kevin’s site a while back, I’m only now discovering all it has to offer. There’s over 200 links, interviews with established photographers, student work and other forms of visual stimulation and inspiration. Good stuff.




I’ve been a fan of The New York Times staff photographer and Pulitzer prize winner Damon Winter’s work for many years now. I first discovered his talent when he was at The Dallas Morning News and later with the Los Angeles Times. At the time I thought, here’s this super talented, young photojournalist who also makes fantastic portraits (newspaper photographers are not  really known for creating quality portraits. In fact, they’re often very bad). How weird is that? Honestly, it kind of pissed me off sometimes how good he was and how young he was.

Well, I don’t get pissed off anymore, and he’s still really, really good and still churning out stellar photojournalistic work, portraits and everything in between for the Times. Check out this interview with Winter by Pete Brook over at too much chocolate.


too much chocolate

Written by eatthedarkness

November 6, 2009 at 3:01 AM