Stanford University’s Technology Ventures Program is Silicon Valley’s incubator for the next big thing. A business program where playtime is problem- solving. The brainchild of innovation gurus Tina Seelig, Ph.D and Tom Byers, Ph.D, the program is dedicated to accelerating high-tech entrepreneurship. It’s a high value prize for all at Stanford, and enrollment is limited to a dozen outstanding students each year. Plus you get to wear paper cones on your head all day and call it work!
We spent a couple of days with the professors and students of the STVP, poking around the creative hub on campus that is the d.school and generally soaking up the chilled out yet intense vibe that is Stanford for The Times magazine, and let me tell you, these kids know they’re at the center of the business world.
STVP Mayfield Fellows Class of 2012
STVP students Robin Perrani, Jenna Nicholas
Angela Hayward, manager of STVP.
Tom Byers, Tina Seelig, creators of Stanford Technology Ventures Program
Here’s a fun shoot with renaissance- woman Sasha Grey. This girl’s a good laugh and so easy to work with, hope we get to do it all again sometime soon.
A girl who’s resume includes actress, model, author, musician, and former pornographic actress, and all by the age of 24! That’s not messing around! She played the lead role in Steven Soderbergh’s 2009 film The Girlfriend Experience ( and was excellent in my opinion) and is currently in the middle of promoting ‘The Juliette Society’, a fictional erotic novel, released earlier this year. A. O. Scott of The New York Times described her pornographic career as having “an unusual degree of intellectual seriousness about it.” In the words of Andy Samberg doing a Nicholas Cage impression…. “That’s high praise!” She’s an interesting girl, and quite clearly more than just a pretty face. Oh, and her instagram feed…. Sasha gone done got herself a good eye!
and of course, suitably inspired, she insisted on getting in on the photo- taking business herself….. my, what a fine looking couple of photogs right there! 😉
Here’s a fun little behind the scenes video of a personal project i shot a little while ago. With much thanks to Devin Trafford for the iPhone camera-work, and Joe Ashby for almost but not quite pulling a hamstring!
When Dr. Eric Topol, one of the world’s foremost cardiologists, heard an alarmed flight attendant ask “Is there a doctor on board?” he instantly knew he could display the potential for wireless medicine. So he snapped an AliveCor device onto his iPhone and performed a cardiogram at 30,000 feet. “These days, I’m prescribing a lot more apps than I am medications.” he declares. For Dr. Topol, it’s no question that the future of medicine lies within your smartphone, and most notably the AlivCor technology.
We photographed Dr. Topol at Scrips Institute in San Diego for Der Speigel last year, and David E. Albert (below), the inventor of AlivCor, for the USC Body Computing Conference. As soon as i saw the little ECG displayed in real time on an iPhone, it was clear it was going to be a game- changer, and i’m not a Doctor, i just play one in my dreams.
Dr. Topol talks more about this revolution, which he clearly embraces, in his controversial new book ‘The Creative Destruction of Medicine: How the Digital Revolution Will Create Better Health Care’ and in a fascinating interview on NBC’s Rock Center. These two gents are true mavericks in my opinion, challenging the status quo in an industry so reluctant to change, and as so, hopefully help usher in a new era of affordable healthcare for all.
“If you could go back 10 years, what advice would you give yourself?”
“Honestly? I would have told myself to get a government job with a nice retirement package so I could retire after 20-25 years and then do my photography while collecting my pension all the while. I don’t want to sound like sour grapes or anything but I’m approaching 39 and while I’m thrilled to have published books, have had exhibitions and the opportunity to travel to amazing places and meet wonderful people thanks to my career, I have no retirement plan whatsover. I didn’t know then that the industry would change so much and make it more difficult to survive. Frankly I’ve given myself a time limit: if by the time I turn 40 I’m not in the place I was hoping to be I will try a different vocation. I love animals and it’s not too late to go back to school to become a vet tech. This is realistic and pragmatic me speaking of course.”
It seems appropriate in some way that his birthday lands on President’s Day, he kinda feels right for that role somehow. We shot him a few years ago now, and a big shout out to my assistant that day Bo B. Randulff for creating the ‘entertained’ off- camera glance. Nice work my man.
Ok, so you wanna flip through my book again, but still don’t wanna wait for that Fed Ex? Well, that’s still not a problem. And now it’s bigger, better and more in- your- face than ever before! Deal with it.
The writer Bret Easton Ellis, shot at his home in West Hollywood. He challenged me “I’m so bored with all the photo shoots done in this house, every conceivable angle has been shot to death. I defy you to shoot an original picture”. Allrighty then! I think it works quite well, particularly the shape of the legs in the frame.
I was so happy to hear that Graeme McDowell from sunny ‘Norn Irn’ won the US Open this past weekend. It reminded me of a cool shoot I did with him back in 2004 for The Observer Sports Magazine (UK). We spent an afternoon on a Scottsdale, Arizona golf course, just shooting around making pictures, and he was awesome to work with. No publicists, no handlers, just me and him having a laugh. I still can’t play golf though. I guess i never picked up any tips. Anyway, good for you Graeme. I’ve always been keeping an eye on your progress.