Behind Photographs at The Museum of Contemporary Art, San Diego.

It is an honor to have 31 of my original 20x24 Polaroids on display at the MCASD in La Jolla until 1/10/16. This is the first time these original Polaroids have been shown in public.

Behind Photographs is a project that I spent 5 years working on with 4 different 20x24 Cameras. Shoot across the United States, I documented over 150 photographers on this format. Please check out our store to see our book from this project.

Lumiere Brothers Center For Photography, Moscow

My show in Russia is coming to a close next week. Thanks so much to the staff at The Lumiere Brothers Center For Photography in Moscow for showing 100 images from Behind Photographs. I would also like to thank the US Embassy for helping to bring me and this project to Russia.

If you are in Moscow and a fan of photography, this place is a must!


Remembering Ken Regan

I only met Ken Regan once, the day I photographed him for Behind Photographs in New York at the 20x24 Polaroid Studio. Ken told me he was very private and rarely allowed others to make portraits of him. He said that he wanted to only show a part of his face and hide behind the cover of his book, All Access. The book and the title could have not been more fitting for a photographer that was the rare shooter that could do it all. Ken covered sports, politics, music, celebrities and shot for a huge range of editorial and advertising clients.In the little time I spent with him, I can tell you that he was kind, genuine and generous to have shared an afternoon and a few of his most important photographs with an unknown photographer from San Diego. Thanks for believing in me Ken, may your images live on forever.


Graham Smith - Portrait on 20x24 Polaroid

When my friend Graham Smith and I discussed the idea of him painting a portrait of me and us shooting a time-lapse of it, I really had no idea what to expect. When he showed up to the studio, he suggested finding something that had already been "Mantoani-onized" to paint on. I ended up pulling out a 20x24 Polaroid portrait of myself and he took the ball and ran with it. Here is the video. Thanks Graham, always an honor collaborating with you.


It has been a long year and long wait, but the books finally arrived last week, all 6 pallets of them! We have been busy moving the 4,500 pounds around the studio and getting books signed and shipped for the holidays. If you would like to order a signed book, you can purchase books direct from the studio at:

Kickstarting Behind Photographs

I have started an effort on Kickstarter to get some positive pre-sales rolling for my book which is due out soon. Please take a look. Books are priced with shipping at the same cost as retail + shipping, plus there are some other special offerings. This book has taken five years to shoot and get published. Thanks for taking a look. Click here to give me a "kickstart"!

LeRoy Grannis 1917-2011


LeRoy Grannis is known for taking some of the most iconic surfing images of the 1960s and 70s. I photographed "Granny" at a retirement home in Carlsbad with his picture of Dewey Weber at 22nd Street in Hermosa Beach. This was one of two 20x24 Polaroids we shot. The room had a very low ceiling, so I had to pop out one of the ceiling tiles so the dark slide could come all the way up. Thanks Granny for your inspiration and your images, we will miss you.

20x24 Wisner Camera on Location

Herman Leonard - March 6, 1923 – August 14, 2010

Herman Leonard with his photograph of Dexter Gordon at the Royal Roost 1948

The work of Herman Leonard has had a great impact on the world of photography. Herman had a unique perspective and a thirst for technical perfection. Although his work was recorded in still photographs, his images often gave you a sense of sound. He will be missed dearly. Please pay him a tribute by viewing his work

On the bottom of his Polaroid portrait he wrote, "It was early 1948 at the Royal Roost in New York. An afternoon rehearsal gave me a unique opportunity to photograph many giants of jazz with my trusty 4x5 Speed Graphic. What a great career! To do what you love and be entertained at the same time!"

[Herman Leonard and Tim Mantoani