film crew


They’ve been doing a documentary on Matt Weber for a pretty long time, and a few months ago I ended up on film because i was having breakfast with Matt on the east side. I was “on”  that morning and they decided they wanted to do more with me.  So they’ll arrive this morning at my apt. at 10:30 a.m.


Only problem: I’m in a miserable mood. I’ve had a bad toothache for a few days and have been applying a concoction of Vodka, Orajel and red-pepper to it every night; and haven’t been sleeping well and yesterday I was eating something and the back molar cracked in half.  One half fell out, the other half is still dangling there.

Since I’m phobic of dentists (and doctors) I didn’t just make an appointment when I should have; and even now I’m thinking maybe I’ll just pull the thing out myself.

The house has been filled with cartons lately from a couple of mat deliveries, so I  got up early and got rid of them; but I don’t feel much like cleaning up (do i ever?) and I’m thinking I’ll just let them in and see the place as it really is.  Yes, the cameras will be turned on me and my abode, and there is no plot that I know of so I’ll have to suck it up and see if I can return to the more “up” Beckerman that they saw last time.

They sort of  picked a bad day (for me) to do this,  plus, although I’ve had a few sales lately, between the tooth, not having dental insurance, and knowing what it will cost to fix this tooth (it’s a little bit more complicated than I’m making it because I have a BRIDGE).  and it is a Bridge Too Far.  which is to say that part of the bridge is attached to that dangling  molar.

If I were on the other side of the camera – I wouldn’t care about the tooth, would I? No.  I have photographed people in the most dire conditions. so now it’s my turn.


I’ll definitely have my camera around so i can get some shots of the crew (two people, one video, one sound) – and whatever happens happens.  or as the French say: c’est la vie (that’s life).

“That’s Life.  That’s what all the people say.
Riding high in April – shot down in May.”

yours truly,

the 15 minutes of fame blog post.

* * *

Finished with the shoot.  It made me nervous at first to have that camera with the lights pointing at me, and a mike clipped to my shirt, but eventually I relaxed.  I guess they were here for about two hours in the apartment, and then we went out and they filmed me shooting in the rain – which really is my natural environment.  By then it was fun, and I was goofing around.  I enjoyed being around the young filmmakers.  It brings back memories.  No, I wouldn’t want to do it again – that part of my life is done with, but it is a pleasure to see how much enthusiasm they have for their work, and what issues they’ve got to overcome.

Will toss a few images in the post later.  Oh, Buddy did hiss at Arlene a few times, and turned on Dan for a moment or two.  No one understood why he was hissing, but I knew: they were crowding in on “his spot.”  He has a few spots in the house, and in the hallway that are his territory.  If you place yourself on those spots, he will defend them.

Here are a few I took after the shoot was finished and they were wrapping up (ASA 1600, f1.4)


From left to right: Matt, Arlene, Dan

and Marcin


They brave the rain…


I test to see how close they can focus with that thing…


I stand on the corner for a while until some school kids come out, and they’re all excited about something
but don’t ask me what… and I plunge in… so now they’ve got film of a street shot happening…


Dan (Producer)



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My name is Dave Beckerman. I am a fine art photographer working in New York City.

10 thoughts on “film crew”

  1. Do something with that tooth-its beyond Oralgel now. After 25 years as a dentist I retired so I could just travel and photograph and I know the longer you wait the worse it will be. You can point a camera at someone from 2 feet away-you can face any dentist.
    I get back to NYC at least once a year, for the fall photo show or for the print show, hope to see some of your work next time. I have always been a B&W darkroom printer and am now trying to decide on doing B&W digitally.
    Cheers, Jim

  2. “I have photographed people in the most dire conditions. so now it’s my turn.”
    That’s a cool statement, Dave!
    I hope you get well soon.

  3. I used to be terrified of the dentist and when had an appointment would have a few shots of whisky beforehand-there,s really nothing to worry about Dave I go now and am not worried at all-after the injection which only lasts for a few seconds-It,s just a walk in the park-Much better than the pain of toothache and far better than false teeth-I just could not contemplate wearing those things.
    Chin up Dave and best wishes to you. Gordon.

  4. If I were to tell you how much experience I have with dentists, from the time I had to wear braces as a kid, to periodontal cuttings (slice gums, scrape, and sew up) four times a year, to having teeth pulled to put a bridge in that I have to put in every morning it would give some of you who don’t have phobias already – phobias. The thing about a phobia is that it is by definition not rational. A real phobia just doesn’t respond to words. It does however respond to drugs. And my old dentist would give me a script for a couple of valiums before I went – and that did the trick. And I’ll do the same this time.

    But some day, I think someone could make a great documentary about dental phobias. But the idea that it can be cured by words is like saying to someone who is afraid of flying: don’t worry, planes are perfectly safe. I happen to love flying, and have absolutely no fear of heights. In fact, when I fly with someone who is scared, I’m the guy who tries to calm the phobic down. In some ways maybe I’m lucky, in that I really only have a couple of these phobias left: dentists and doctors, and I’m not so bad with doctors anymore.

    So to all of you out there who have real phobias – I wouldn’t try to be rational with you about it – I’d just try and find the right combination of anti-anxiety drugs, or drink – whatever works best. Life is too short to conquer all your fears. In some ways, its what makes us who we are.

    They will find, I’m sure some phobic gene someday, and be able to target it, and then we’ll just be regular people, so long as they don’t zap some other genes by accident.

  5. Dave,
    Coming to this late, but congratulations on being interviewed. Good work. Look forward to viewing the finished product

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