Seattle Photographer Daniel Berman | Seattle editorial photographer | (206) 387-3767 daniel@bermanphotos.com

Seattle brewery owners for Seattle Weekly Voracious Food Guide

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Ravenna Brewing Owner Tommy Ortega is focused on craft-brewing flavorful specialty beers, like a farm-style saison and a slow-burning jalape–o kolsch. Originally from Hermosa Beach, California, Ortega has quickly created a neighborhood fixture. Photo by Daniel Berman for Seattle Weekly.

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Georgetown Brewing Company Founder Manny Chao at the Seattle brewery’s headquarters. Chao oversees a brand that produces some of the country’s most popular craft beers, from Manny’s to Lucille IPA.

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Way back in August I had the great pleasure of photographing a section for the Seattle Weekly Voracious Food Guide profiling three different brewery owners known for their hard work and excellent craft beers. I photographed Tommy Ortega at his Ravenna Brewing, Manny Chao at Georgetown Brewing Company and Adam Robbings at Reuben’s Brews (blocks from my house!) It was so cool to step into these guys’ world and hear how they got their start – I had a personal interest as a beer lover and fellow small business owner. Compared to most of my assignments, these were wonderfully slow shoots. Me and the owners and a couple beverages, trying out ideas, hanging out and making pictures.

Odesza for Seattle Weekly cover | Seattle editorial photographer

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Odesza in Seattle. Now completing world and national tours, the electronic duo (Clayton Knight and Harrison Mills) got their start in 2012 at Western Washington University as undergrads. Photo by Daniel Berman.

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Odesza in Seattle. Now completing world and national tours, the electronic duo (Clayton Knight and Harrison Mills) got their start in 2012 at Western Washington University as undergrads. Photo by Daniel Berman.

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Odesza in Seattle. Now completing world and national tours, the electronic duo (Clayton Knight and Harrison Mills) got their start in 2012 at Western Washington University as undergrads. Photo by Daniel Berman.

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Odesza in Seattle. Now completing world and national tours, the electronic duo (Clayton Knight and Harrison Mills) got their start in 2012 at Western Washington University as undergrads. Photo by Daniel Berman.

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Odesza in Seattle. Now completing world and national tours, the electronic duo (Clayton Knight and Harrison Mills) got their start in 2012 at Western Washington University as undergrads. Photo by Daniel Berman.

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Odesza in Seattle. Now completing world and national tours, the electronic duo (Clayton Knight and Harrison Mills) got their start in 2012 at Western Washington University as undergrads. Photo by Daniel Berman.

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The electronic music duo Odesza is embarking on their second world tour after playing one of their first shows in a small college town just three years ago — their meteoric rise is profiled in a cool cover story from Seattle Weekly that I got to shoot a few months ago but is out this week. Clayton Knight and Harrison Mills graduated from Western Washington University around the same time that I did, so we had a lot to chat about and it was a fun shoot to do in downtown Seattle. These guys were super nice and very generous with their time, and the photos turned out great. Give their music a listen — jam out — and enjoy the rest of your week!

Opposing sides of the urban density debate | Roger Valdez and John Fox for Seattle Weekly | Seattle editorial photographer

(Left) Microhousing and urban density advocate Roger Valdez photographed in Seattle near his office in the South Lake Union neighborhood. (Right) John Fox, a longtime housing and homeless rights advocate, photographed November 2 in Shoreline outside of The Bounty, a coffee shop he often works from. Photos by Daniel Berman/www.bermanphotos.com

(Left) Microhousing and urban density advocate Roger Valdez photographed Nov. 5 in Seattle near his office in the South Lake Union neighborhood. (Right) John Fox, a longtime housing and homeless rights advocate, photographed Nov. 2 in Shoreline outside of The Bounty, a coffee shop he often works from. Photos by Daniel Berman for Seattle Weekly.

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Seattle is debating how to approach the issues of urban density and housing development and, reasonably, everyone has something to say. I was tasked with photographing two advocates on opposing sides for the Nov. 10 Seattle Weekly cover story. A interesting and thorough article by Casey Jaywork explains the topic much better than I can. And check out the cool illustrations by Art Director Jose Trujillo for the piece!  Big thanks to Roger Valdez and John Fox for being generous with their time!

Gravity Pay CEO Dan Price for Seattle Weekly | Seattle editorial photographer

Back in May I had a cover shoot from Seattle Weekly to photograph Gravity Pay CEO Dan Price at the payment processing company’s headquarters in Ballard. The story was held until now to be included in the Best Of Issue. When I photographed him, Price’s decision to offer a starting salary of $70,000 per year to all of his employees was met by an immediate deluge of international attention. He cut his own multimillion-dollar pay to be able to finance the move. Of course not everyone was happy with the announcement, but the business is seeing an increase in sales and Price says he stands by the principles of making such a transition: for all his employees to have an actual livable wage in the Northwest. Price was humble, present, and generous with his time, and had no problem posing for a few shots with the coffee cup prop we brought in. I gave it to him after the shoot! Assisting by Ian Bates.

Gravity Payments CEO Dan Price at their headquarters in the Ballard neighborhood of Seattle May 11, 2015. Photo by Daniel Berman for Seattle Weekly.

Gravity Payments CEO Dan Price at their headquarters in the Ballard neighborhood of Seattle May 11, 2015. Photo by Daniel Berman for Seattle Weekly.

Gravity Payments CEO Dan Price at their headquarters in the Ballard neighborhood of Seattle May 11, 2015. Photo by Daniel Berman for Seattle Weekly.

Gravity Payments CEO Dan Price at their headquarters in the Ballard neighborhood of Seattle May 11, 2015. Photo by Daniel Berman for Seattle Weekly.

Gravity Payments CEO Dan Price at their headquarters in the Ballard neighborhood of Seattle May 11, 2015. Photo by Daniel Berman for Seattle Weekly.

Gravity Payments CEO Dan Price at their headquarters in the Ballard neighborhood of Seattle May 11, 2015. Photo by Daniel Berman for Seattle Weekly.

Gravity Payments CEO Dan Price at their headquarters in the Ballard neighborhood of Seattle May 11, 2015. Photo by Daniel Berman for Seattle Weekly.

Gravity Payments CEO Dan Price at their headquarters in the Ballard neighborhood of Seattle May 11, 2015. Photo by Daniel Berman for Seattle Weekly.

Gravity Payments CEO Dan Price photographed for Seattle Weekly

Gravity Payments CEO Dan Price photographed for Seattle Weekly

Punk Band The Wimps for Seattle Weekly | Seattle editorial photographer

Punk band The Wimps enjoy a spa day in their usual Seattle surroundings. Photo by Daniel Berman for Seattle Weekly. Styling by Tristan Weholt. L-R: Matt, Rachel, Dave

Seattle Weekly’s art director Jose Trujillo commissioned me for an awesome piece in the paper’s Best Of Issue that would send up the idea of The Wimps, which won Best Punk Band, as this exclusive, uptight group barely making room in their day for the story. As luck would have it, Matt, Rachel and Dave are actually nice people and were game for the idea: Jose wanted to have the band enjoying a spa day somewhere kind of dirty — could it be in an alleyway? I scouted a few hours looking for the right sketchy/usable spot. I checked out parking lots and back streets in Capitol Hill, SoDo, Georgetown, Pioneer Square, the ID and Ballard. With hours to the call time I managed to spot a perfectly questionable, graffiti-covered sidewalk with an absurd amount of garbage strewn about. I did a slow roll. There were boxes of beer upturned, bottles everywhere, and someone had gotten ahold of some chalk. I liked the spot immediately and wondered who would litter like that, then parked the car and waited for the team to assemble. Under some nice intense sunlight and with the help of Seattle stylist Tristan Weholt who sourced and staged everything else (and made a plate of guitar-shaped tea sandwiches and refreshing fruit-infused water to boot), plus the help of good friend Matt McKnight assisting, we got to work transforming this SoDo backlot into our makeshift alley spa.

Punk band The Wimps enjoy a spa day in their usual Seattle surroundings. Photo by Daniel Berman for Seattle Weekly. Styling by Tristan Weholt. L-R: Matt, Rachel, Dave

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Restoring John Steinbeck’s Western Flyer | for Seattle Weekly cover

Backed into the southwest corner of a large, unassuming dry dock in Port Townsend, Washington is a vessel with plenty of history. Maybe you’ve heard of John Steinbeck’s book The Sea of Cortez? This is the boat that took him and his team on their epic, problem-laden-but-ultimately-successful tour of the Gulf of California, then in its prime 75 years ago.

Today, the boat has new ownership under John Gregg, a geologist who spent $1 mil to call it his, and will likely have to spend a similar amount to fully restore it. Still, he’s dedicated to getting the boat ship-shape. Other people have tried before yet failed to do so, starting and stopping the restoration process for one reason or another – often financial, sometimes personal. There’s much more to this story, well-told in a fascinating piece by Patrick Hutchison.

The owner was unavailable for a portrait, but his manager for the project is Mike York, a longtime Seattleite who spends most of the week working slowly but surely to coordinate getting this boat back to order. I got the call last Friday from Seattle Weekly to head up to meet Mike the next day. Port Townsend is a ferry ride and an hour and a half of driving, but I’m not complaining. It was nice to check out of town for the morning and cruise through the countryside. Eventually I arrived at the dry dock. I knew what the boat looked like from Google but it wasn’t jumping out at me. I asked around. Did anyone know the John Steinbeck boat? A few workers threw back sympathetic but unhelpful stares. I had one more area to check out and there it was, nestled between cargo containers, a forklift and a set of hand built wooden stairs reaching to deck height.

This, was the Western Flyer.

Curious area residents and tourists from around the country arrive each day to take a peek at the Western Flyer. The adventures onboard close to 75 years ago were foddor for Steinbeck’s prized non-fiction book, “The Log from Sea of Cortez.” Photo by Daniel Berman for Seattle Weekly.

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A view of the Western Flyer ship once owned by  the author John Steinbeck, and now by John Gregg. After many failed attempts, the craft is being restored by a team at a dry dock in Port Townsend, Washington. Photo by Daniel Berman for Seattle Weekly.

A view of the Western Flyer ship once owned by the author John Steinbeck, and now by John Gregg. After many failed attempts, the craft is being restored by a team at a dry dock in Port Townsend, Washington. Photo by Daniel Berman for Seattle Weekly.

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Afterward, Mike asked if I wanted to climb aboard for a peek inside. That just required scaling the stairs and then a narrow ladder. With my c-stand and studio light. Oh well. Every day is arm day when you’re a lighting photographer I guess. It was worth it anyway to see what is best described as a Titanic-esque scene. Just wall-to-wall barnacles capped off by grime and rust-covered artifacts from previous owners and occupants.

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Onboard and inside the Western Flyer.

The cabin has seen better days.

The cabin has seen better days.

 

Space was at a premium. I hunched into the corner with my wide angle to try and show what sinking and years of decay will do to a place. The wall left a fine coat of white dust down my back. Cest la vie. Normally I am assigned to photograph people or preparing meticulous staged product photography, and I enjoy this work, yet getting the chance to document something in disrepair, so completely varnished, just lost in a time capsule, made for one of the most fascinating shoots yet of 2015.

 

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The Western Flyer attracts plenty of onlookers curious about the ship’s fate.

Bertha tunnel project activist Cary Moon for Seattle Weekly | Seattle editorial photographer

I had a great assignment from Seattle Weekly earlier this month to photograph Cary Moon, an activist and urban designer who opposes continued development of the Bertha tunnel project. For those not living in Seattle, the waterfront highway a.k.a the Highway 99 Viaduct, is being torn down and replaced with a tunnel. The project has been plagued with problems and delays, some technical, some bureaucratic — all expensive. Check out the story for a much more thorough peek into why this divisive issue matters so much. We battled the wind on top of Pier 86 in downtown for a view of the skyline and then moved to under the viaduct for another view of the city.

Bertha tunnel project activist Cary Moon. Photographed for Seattle Weekly.

Bertha tunnel project activist Cary Moon. Photographed for Seattle Weekly.

Bertha tunnel project activist Cary Moon. Photographed for Seattle Weekly.

Bertha tunnel project activist Cary Moon. Photographed for Seattle Weekly.

Bertha tunnel project activist Cary Moon. Photographed for Seattle Weekly.

Bertha tunnel project activist Cary Moon. Photographed for Seattle Weekly.

Bertha tunnel project activist Cary Moon. Photographed for Seattle Weekly.

Bertha tunnel project activist Cary Moon. Photographed for Seattle Weekly.

Bertha tunnel project activist Cary Moon. Photographed for Seattle Weekly.

Bertha tunnel project activist Cary Moon. Photographed for Seattle Weekly.

Bertha tunnel project activist Cary Moon. Photographed for Seattle Weekly.

Bertha tunnel project activist Cary Moon. Photographed for Seattle Weekly.

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Thanks for looking,

Daniel

Alison Holcomb & Gregg Holcomb cover for Seattle Weekly | Seattle editorial photographer

Alison Holcomb & Gregg Holcomb cover for Seattle Weekly  | Seattle photographer Daniel Berman

Alison Holcomb & Gregg Holcomb cover for Seattle Weekly | Seattle photographer Daniel Berman

Alison Holcomb & Gregg Holcomb cover for Seattle Weekly  | Seattle photographer Daniel Berman

Alison Holcomb & Gregg Holcomb cover for Seattle Weekly | Seattle photographer Daniel Berman

Alison Holcomb & Gregg Holcomb for Seattle Weekly  | Seattle photographer Daniel Berman

Alison Holcomb & Gregg Holcomb for Seattle Weekly | Seattle photographer Daniel Berman

My first assignment for Seattle Weekly was this cover shoot for a sensitive story about Alison Holcomb and Gregg Holcomb’s unique histories. Alison was the writer and public face of Initiative 502, which legalized recreational marijuana in 2012 here in Washington. Her husband Gregg is the owner of the Capitol Hill bar Witness. Her story as a drug law reformer and activist for criminal sentencing reform intertwine with her husband’s tragic reality. His father was murdered. He is alone among his siblings in calling for rehabilitation for the murderer, and not a life sentence. There is so much more to this powerful story by Nina Shapiro, please give it a read.

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