While Seated [013]

Michael David Murphy
While Seated
Published in
4 min readJul 21, 2016


20160628_IMG_7307.JPG — A long time ago I worked on a photo series of impossible tee-shots, which was basically what the tee-box looked like when you turned 180 degrees from the course. I thought it was a fun haha idea, and I shot a bunch of it in medium format, and I scanned it even, but it was never really any good. It was a fun idea for an audience of one, but that was about it. Sometimes the ideas you think are worth pursuing aren’t really worth pursuing — but I saw this up in Maine and it reminded me of that long abandoned project and I figured what the hell.
20160720 — I was talking with a curator yesterday about the dearth of incredible political art as it intersects Our Particularly Troubling American Moment (which is long and ongoing) — but it was a day before seeing this. If you’re a photographer, this could have been your idea; if you’re a sculptor with an iPhone, this could have been your idea. So awesome, so perfect, and could have easily been staged and dismantled before anyone was the wiser. Gotta love the “barbed wire”, Old Glory on the corners, and the warning posters on the outside. If not brilliant, just plain awesome.
20160720 — A small moment of levity in the middle of last weekend. Phil Mickelson wearing a binder clip to tighten the fit on his hat in the winds at Royal Troon last week, followed by a screenshot of the Amazon page for “Large Binder Clips” (the Amazon screenshot via nolayingup on twitter, I think) with the requisite “Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought” in the footer, whether it was real or photoshopped or whatever, it’s fantastic.
20160720 — Proud of this work effort and first real hardcover book jacket. An advance copy. Will share more news about it later this summer.
20160720 — Wild to see this photo on twitter a few nights ago, as #ATLISREADY protesters swarmed I-20 to shut it down, with varying degree(s) of success. Here they have two lanes blocked with a stretched banner. I don’t know if the shut-down lasted five seconds to take this photo, five minutes, or more. But the two notables are that both women in this photo are allys who are putting themselves in serious, palpable danger, trying to shut-down one of Atlanta’s main arteries after dark, WITH A SIGN that urges people to stop calling the police. As much as I embrace all forms of protest, this banner still has me scratching my head — I’ve heard its message before, that communities should be able to police themselves, that police can be more likely to cuff & arrest than take the time to figure out the reality of what’s going on in a particular situation, but wow. [Screenshot — not my photo]
20160720–”Same beer made by the same people”, sold to Georgians as “local” craft beer, the sales of which will benefit the global shareholders (and politics) of Miller/Coors. Oh, the marketable sweetness of real craft beer that’s become #fakecraftbeer [Screenshot]
20160719 — Glad to see the Democratic interns on Capitol Hill responded to Paul Ryan’s lily-white intern selfie with their own “class photo”. Though this outtake is my favorite.
20160719–[Screenshot of a Starbucks/Facebook/Twitter trifecta]
20160719 — If I ever scoop-up limited release craft beer, it’s by accident, like when you just happen to be at the store when the truck filled with Some Great New Thing pulls-up. Today, I wound-up with Westbrook Key Lime Pie Gose because, like everyone else, I saw the tweet on my lunch-break and went over to grab some. When I left, there were six dudes and a lady each awaiting their allocation; there was a man buying a six-pack of Creature Comforts’ Athena; there was a guy who’d just checked-out with three different six-packs, each from Orpheus; and there was a guy loading-up a hand-truck full of Dos Equis. Craft beer mania is for real, even when it’s not for craft beer. (And that’s my last 6 of Terrapin’s Watermelon Gose, apparently.)
20160719 — #greatforwomen
20160719 — #chimping
20160719 — The only use I’ve found for snapchat (that’s unique to its platform) is the ability to use audio from another app (through your phone’s speakers) while recording video. I’ve been making dumb things like this (which I ported to Vine) which until now, you haven’t been able to do in real-time on Vine, Instagram, or with your own built-in camera app. It’s an imperfect game I enjoy playing. If it only had a name.
20160718 — After Phil Mickelson shot a 63 on a sparkling Thursday at Royal Troon, I snipped together all of his woods & iron shots, much like I did with the drives off the 13th tee at Augusta this year.

It’s been interesting to see how some of the ideas I pursued with these golf supercuts have leaked into actual tournament coverage. I started making them because they offered a way of seeing I wanted to see represented in the real world. And now those same ideas are filtering into actual broadcasts and post-round analysis.

I can’t claim direct credit for anything, but it’s interesting to see “watch Stenson’s round in 30 seconds” videos pop-up from Sky and NBC and whomever else.

After last year’s PGA at Valhalla, a dog-fight between McIlroy, Mickelson, Fowler & Stenson, I wanted to see what it would look like to visualize all four of them playing the course at the same time, and came up with this:


After yesterday’s round, it was interesting to see the R&A’s version (posted to Twitter) of Stenson & Mickelson’s front-nine.

The video team for the R&A pursued a similar idea as mine, while not bothering to sync-up the timing of each player playing the same hole, because half the screen would be blank every now and again.

Maybe I need to scrub yesterday’s footage and do a proper, comprehensive version? With which clone of me?

20160718 — Facebook is a mess, which is why the only way I could bear looking at it on a small screen was through Facebook’s own experimental app, Paper, which they announced they were shutting down this month, but whose access they’ve essentially shut-off already. If I didn’t need FB access for work, I wouldn’t have a single Zuck-app installed. This one app, Paper, made connecting to that messy world a little more orderly and sane. And now it’s gone. Yay, Facebook!

20160717 — This has been a sequence of 10 days that would read best as date-ascending (where you fall into the madness), rather than date-descending (where you travel back in time).

It’s been a one-day-has-led-to-the-next kind of week. But that would be kinda prohibitive here, in that, I’m not re-ordering this scratchpad. But I should and wish I would.

20160719 — Sat down and had a chat with Allen Murabayashi about “What Makes a Photo Iconic?” for the Photoshelter podcast, which might make sense if you were reading all of this in reverse order.
20160717 — An old friend answered this tweet (on Facebook) with this answer below, from Richard Thompson.
Not from the 1st-person of a Trump supporter, but probably as close as I’ll get.
20160714 — enough.png

Odeo released a new service today called Twttr, which is a sort of “group send” SMS application. Each person controls their own network of friends. When any of them send a text message to “40404,” all of his or her friends see the message via sms. This launched officially today, and a few select insiders were playing with the service at the Valleyschwag party in San Francisco last night.

10 years ago today, in Techcrunch.

20160711 — Invasive, low-hanging tree-limb in Savannah [google streetview screenshot]

I put together a compilation of last week’s “best” news photographs, including the greatness from Jonathan Bachman / Reuters:

…and one of the most interesting details of this photograph, beyond the general awesomeness of composition and framing and body language and perfectness, is visible if you’re looking at a large version (the version above was 3911-pixelswide).

Skitching this up is the ugliest way to mark-up an incredible photograph, but doing so makes me realize I should just do the entire photograph and include it all in a post for #PhotosWeLove. (Update: which is exactly what I did here: “Can I interrogate this photograph? Can I hold it here in front of me, arrested?

20160708 — I remember growing-up in the 80s, wondering about the 60s, and how much more exciting that decade seemed; a time of upheaval and war, assassination & empowerment.

We’ve had a week that feels historical, in that same sense, and I hope the moment doesn’t grow into a decade of this nonsense.

20160706_IMG_7497.JPG — I took a fuzzy photo of Fuzzy, one of the most elusive and best things I’ve ever tasted. [Screenshot]