About Alan Pakaln

I could be called an accidental photographer, sculptor, and writer, and clinical engineer because, at what might have been an appropriate age, I never thought about becoming any of these.
By profession, I am a (retired) clinical engineer with many years of experience overseeing the application of medical technology in New York City hospitals.
My education in photography began about age 17 (1964), and took place in a small darkroom, a closet under the stairs leading to the basement.
Eventually, my darkroom had two enlargers, one for medium format, and I could produce both color and black-and-white images.
I’ve never been a high-tech enthusiast, although I have studied aspects of Weston’s and Adams’ zone system.
I am an amateur in the classic sense; I only create what I care about.
My favorite cameras were the Nikkormat 35 mm and the inexpensive, point-and-shoot cameras, like a Brownie with 127 film.
I still mostly use simple, inexpensive, point-and-shoot cameras.
I consider my written projects the same as any visual thing I’ve made – it all feels like it’s coming from the same place.
I cannot spell to save my life, nor do I know technically correct grammar – my writing must be edited.
When creating something that really works, there is no “visualizing” or reflecting on what I’m doing.
When it works, I am not really feeling present; I just am present.

Other interests: intentional community, permaculture, public libraries, nonprofit organizations, and risk management. See https://concernedconnections.com

 

 

Facsimiles of old sites.
AdForPeace
OhNoOhYes
In 2004, my friend Igor and I worked on a social network project, a nonprofit named Post-a-Notice
It failed spectacularly: lack of money and knowledge. PostANotice
How we described it at the time CLICK HERE

I was born in Manhattan, Doctor’s Hospital on the upper East Side (now a luxury condominium), childhood spent in the extreme Southeast corner of Yonkers in a house my immigrant from Latvia  grandfather built c. 1930. Family photos before he was born.