June, 2014White Spaceby Mel Lindstrom


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When a friend asked me to give a talk at her book release, I was not quite sure what I could add.  The deeply emotional and involving book is called “Finding Spiritual White Space”, and she wanted me to discuss how I use white space in my images.  As I examined how I use white space in photography, I realized that this fit perfectly.


I use white space to direct the viewers eye, to form the composition,  sometimes actually to change or alter the emotional value of the image.

But more importantly,  by giving distance around the main subject I can give the viewer room to breath, to contemplate, to consider the meaning of the of main subject.  And in that white space, the emotional impact of the main subject becomes more intense. In other words, with less around to crowd the viewers eye, the truth of what is really important can become clear.

That is when I realized that the same is true in our lives. We crowd things into the empty space.  Then, what we should be focusing on becomes lost.


It was a great discussion. And I feel honored to that Bonnie Gray asked me to share. If you get a chance, you should really check out her book. http://www.amazon.com/Finding-Spiritual-Whitespace-Awakening-Your/dp/0800721799

April, 2014The NightFall Pixieby Mel Lindstrom


The day flows into the night. With the help of the NightFall Pixie

November, 2013What’s Behind Door Number 3by Mel Lindstrom

It doesn’t really matter. For the autistic elevator explorer there is no choice. The adventure will take him through each portal to examine the differences in all three.  Speed, temperature, sensitivity of the buttons, even the smells will be compared and analyzed.  To what end? Only the Elevator Pilgrim knows for certain. But there are plenty of them. All across the world.   Like an episode from The X-Files or the Twilight Zone,  Autistic children and adults from each corner of the globe seek out the experience of new elevators and upload the video’s to the web.




This blog demonstrates just a fraction of the variances in design, style, craftsmanship. But the variety is endless. Hence the expeditions will continue. At least until Matthew reaches a point where his attention turns to another fixation. But until then, the next plan in this journey will be to upload some of the more than 100 video taken on these trips. Not because they are exciting. Rather because it will reinforce the mystery of the Elevator Pilgrim.



Copyright Mel Linstrom  All rights reserve

Burbank, California



Copyright Mel Linstrom  All rights reserve

San Diego, California




BASS Pro Shop, Manteca, California



Copyright Mel Linstrom  All rights reserve

Santa Clara, California



The images on this blog are just a few from a very large series.

Series One: http://melphoto.com/portfolios/elevators/

Series Two: http://melphoto.com/elevators2/

November, 2013Banister Walkingby Mel Lindstrom

What is banister walking?

Something I can’t do.


October, 2013Elevator Artby Mel Lindstrom

A little different take on the elevator series.
When a autistic child has a calling to fill his obsessive needs, you need to respond. Often with no time to retrieve the quality equipment I prefer to shoot with.  At those times the iphone and apps come in pretty handy.  In fact, with proper use they can turn an otherwise mundane parking lot elevator into a work of art. As these new additions to the elevator series will show.




Apartments in Mountain View





Parking Lot, Stanford University





Top Floor Parking, Stanford.

Yes, we did ride the elevators up and then take the scooters down. Again, and again, and again,……





Washington Monument, Washington D.C.

October, 2013PowerSkin Adsby Mel Lindstrom

XPAL had a fun use for this great Hyper Realism style.




Excitingly searching for more clients willing to take this bold look and use it wisely.




September, 2013Bunkers, Bars and Barricadesby Mel Lindstrom

On occasion the elevators we visit are not so inviting. Periodically the odor wafting forth will acknowledge a previous human presence. Some elevators appear to be constructed more closely to a bunker or confining moving cell than an elegant carriage of transportation. But when something is an obsession, all one considers is filling that need, that desire, that addiction. So if it’s an elevator and there is something unique about it, Matthew is called to action. And I am literally along for the ride.


Parking garage, Monterey


Office complex, San Jose


Parking garage, Sunnyvale train station.


Cannery Row, Monterey Ca


Eastridge Mall, San Jose

September, 2013Legal Force Adsby Mel Lindstrom

This project was actually completed a while ago, but this is my first chance to show off the nice images we created for a totally new concept in legal services. LegalForce is the first walk in legal service venue. It’s such a unique concept that it’s best for me to not even try to explain it. Better to just check it out for yourself: http://www.legalforce.com







September, 2013Tony Stewart – Waiheke Island Yacht Clubby Mel Lindstrom

Another project from my New Zealand friends at Fairfax magazines.  http://www.fairfaxmagazines.co.nz/index.html

A portrait of restaurateur Tony Stewart and his new place in San Francisco, the Waiheke Island Yacht Club.   Great place and great food. As the photo’s below will show.  I have to say, I was treated to the best lamb meal I have ever had in my life!

I wish you great success Tony, you have taken on quite a project.




Just some of the excellent food being served to famous photographers at the Waiheke Island Yacht Club.

September, 2013Catherine Mohr – Da Vinci Deviceby Mel Lindstrom

The Da Vinci Device.  A totally cool, futuristic robotic surgical machine.



I was contacted by Fairfax magazines out of New Zealand to shoot a unique portrait of Catherine Mohr, the Director of Research at Intuitive Medical.  http://www.fairfaxmagazines.co.nz/index.html

The people Intuitive Medical were amazingly inspiring because, like Catherine,  they are all passionate about their jobs and the future of surgical procedures. The overriding theme seems to be to constantly ask the question: “How can we improve this procedure next time?”.

Since this large device basically mimics a surgeons hand, I thought of putting the device behind Catherine with her hand properly lit in the foreground.




I also found out the the Da Vinci Device is now being used at an out of the way Hostel in Romania. Free stay there also.
Just kidding. Dont stay at any hostel that has a Da Vince Device. Unless you want to be the start of the next horror movie…


July, 2013From Elevators to Escalatorsby Mel Lindstrom


From elevators to escalators. It’s just how things progress.
Actually it’s the competitive wishes and will of Adi, my younger son. After years of being drag to elevators for years, Adi makes a choice for his own curious obsession.  Escalators.




Paradise Pier, Disneyland

Here Matthew makes certain that Adi understands who still rules the elevator buttons.
What a strange path life (and my sons) continue to lead me down.



Four Seasons, San Diego

One son rides up as the other son rides down. Getting them both to arrive on the same level at the same time can be time consuming.



The Hyatt, Phoenix

Do you see the elevators in the background? Guess where Matthew is?



The Hyatt, Phoenix




Valco shopping center, Cupertino

No that is not Adi on the escalator. He is just out of frame on his way up. But I kinda liked this shot a little better.




The images on this blog are just a few that have not been added to the entire series. Which can be found here: http://melphoto.com/portfolios/elevators/

June, 2013Successful Lighting Demoby Mel Lindstrom

Since working directly with Flolight, the video lighting manufacture, there have been some exciting and fun events taking place. Like the recent lighting demo at 4th Street Studio’s.  These shots were all done with the FloLight lighting systems.



Thanks to the wonderful model Domonique was lit here using three LED lights. With a separate spot on the backgrond. Simple, clean, but beautiful.





Lighting set-up for these shots started with a 2500 fluorescent from FloLIght. Aided by 2 – 330’s for a rim light, and one LED spot on the face.

4th St. Studios – FloLight Demo from FloLight on Vimeo.



Feel free to send an e-mail if you would like to be invited to the next lighting demo.

May, 2013In – Out / Up – Downby Mel Lindstrom

More in the on going elevator series.

The background story: Matthew is autistic. For some reason Matthew and many other kids and adults like him have an eerie compulsion to ride and video tape elevators.

The images on this blog are just a few that have not been added to the entire series. Which can be found here: http://melphoto.com/portfolios/elevators/


Hard Rock Cafe’  Hotel,  San Diego




K Parkade Bay Elevators,  San Diego




A C O  Furniture Store, Santa Clara Ca.     Cool ride on a freight elevator.




Westfield / Oakridge Shopping mall,  San Jose



Hyatt Regency, downtown Phoenix



The images on this blog are just a few that have not been added to the entire series. Which can be found here: http://melphoto.com/portfolios/elevators/

May, 2013PayPal Quality Standardsby Mel Lindstrom



Sure it’s a basic commercial shot. But when a large, international company wants the simple to be produced with quality, efficiency and accuracy, they make certain to work with someone with experience.  OK, and I really do love to make simple products look great.  So this images was just one from a very large shoot. But look at that detail.



May, 2013Henkel Interior Diving Platform?by Mel Lindstrom

The Henkel Corporation is a huge, international company. They produce many well known brands. Such a enormous conglomerate would no doubt be filled with stuffy people in stuffy white lab coats strolling around a stuffy, cubical filled corporate office – right?            Maybe not.


Look close at this image. There is no support pole for the interior stairs to the next level.


This is the small pole that supports the stairway system from above.




Now you might think from these shots that I was on an architectural shoot. But since I am a people photographer, I was hired for a full day of shooting group portraits. When I arrived at the Henkel headquarters in Scottsdale Arizona,  I was astonished with the incredible building and wonderful people we met.

The building was a work of art. So cool that I had to take some time after the real shoot to try and capture the unique and fun design of the building.  I really could have spent all day there shooting the building.


OK – We did have some fun working with these “stuffy corporate servants”.

With guns-a-blazon’ and whips-a-snapping, we laughed and had a great day. Oh yeah, we shot plenty of portraits on white too. I mean, that is what I was there for……………..





May, 2013Communicator Awardsby Mel Lindstrom


Three new awards from the Communicator Awards.  Nice new trophies too.

The Communicator Awards is the leading international awards program recognizing big ideas in marketing and communications. Founded nearly two decades ago, The Communicator Awards receives over 6,000 entries from companies and agencies of all sizes, making it one of the largest awards of its kind in the world. As we enter our 19th season, we’re also introducing expanded mobile and new cause marketing categories, making this year’s awards bigger and better than ever.


April, 2013The Mystery Of Elevators Continuesby Mel Lindstrom

From a hallway at Embarcadero 3 in San Francisco.

The series continues. Mainly because Matthew still needs to get his elevator fix on a weekly basis. For those who are still unaware of the background story, Matthew is autistic. For some reason Matthew and many other kids and adults like him have an eerie compulsion to ride and video tape elevators.

The images on this blog are just a few that have not been added to the entire series. Which can be found here: http://melphoto.com/portfolios/elevators/




The Hyatt Regency in San Francisco


We are now using his hobby as a way to get him to improve his handwriting and other skills in school.  Even Math.  He can not do word problems with apples. But if you ask him to tell you what floor you would end up on if you started on the 6th, went up 10 floors and then went down 4 floors, he could tell you instantly.  Hey, I work with what I have.




Los Gatos, CA  Safeway


A parking garage at De Anza College in Cupertino CA


Top level of a parking garage in San Mateo.


Let me know how you like this blog, or the entire series: http://melphoto.com/portfolios/elevators/


April, 2013ADDY Regional Updateby Mel Lindstrom




Here’s a little update. Just got word that two of the Local ADDY winners just went on to won Silver awards at the regional’s.  Next is National’s.

April, 2013ADDY Award Winnersby Mel Lindstrom


I am a bit behind on this, since the awards show was in early March, but it’s been a busy month.
Two ADDY trophy’s, one Silver and one Bronze.





The ADDY Awards Competition is a three-tier national competition conducted annually by the American Advertising Federation. The ADDY Awards Competition is the advertising industry’s largest and most representative competition for creative excellence

The annual Silicon Valley Ad Club ADDY Awards Competition recognizes exceptional advertising created in the San Francisco Bay Area. The ADDY Awards honor advertising excellence in all media including print, broadcast, out-of-home and public service advertising.



A Trophy Winner




A couple of the images that were selected for the honors.




March, 2013Ronnie Lott is In The Houseby Mel Lindstrom


Since I am known first and foremost as a people photographer, and my main studio is located in the heart of the SOMA district of San Francisco,  it can be expected that I have been lucky enough to photograph many players from both past and present 49er’s teams.   Recently I was on a shoot with Ronnie Lott, 4 time Super Bowl champion.  I have actually worked with him before so I know what a wonderful humanitarian and inspiring person he is.

Past shoots have allowed me to make great friendships and walk away with signed posters from Joe Montana or Dwight Clark. But this shoot was much different than any other shoot with a 49er player, as it was the first time I given with a signed football.  How cool!





The football now sits in my Sunnyvale Studio office.

Thanks Ronnie!

And Steven Jacobson, of Fairway,  for allowing it to happen.