Maiden Voyages: February 2015

(Last Updated On May 15, 2022)

I begin with some sad news; Pip has informed me that Will McBride died a few days ago. This is confirmed by news reports and you can read more here and here. He died on January 29th in Berlin at the age of 84. The world has lost a great proponent for a better peaceful world and I believe that despite the controversies stirred by his work, his efforts are being vindicated in the light of reason.

Donations: I had intended to establish a PayPal account for those who wish to make financial contributions to help Pigtails keep running. However, quite coincidentally, I have been reading a biography of Martin Luther King, Jr. and realized that despite the nobility of his work, there was still much infighting about the appropriation of funds. Operating this site is challenging enough without the stress of such considerations. I am nevertheless willing to accept contributions privately. You can email your interest to [email protected] and we will discuss the possibility. Monetary help will have to be conducted this way until Pigtails more formally becomes a non-profit organization. As it now stands, my priorities are: 1) Pay for the maintenance of the website and services associated with it, 2) Hire researchers (on a case-by-case basis) to do some of the legwork needed to complete projects now in the pipeline and 3) If there are sufficient funds and there is no other way to access the material, purchase hard-copy materials of interest so they can be used in posts. My accountant informs me that there are other considerations as well, but those would be more properly discussed in direct communications.

Snail’s Pace: I do recognize that new posts have been more gradual lately. Thank goodness there are the contributions of other writers now. This state of affairs is due to the enormous amount of information coming my way. Also, some artists and collectors have shown an increased interest in meaningful collaborations which will make this site stand out even more. In any event, the fruits of my current efforts will become apparent to the general readership in time; there are a couple of big projects in the works that need my ongoing attention right now.

Wish List: I made some small mention of the new Wish List page last month. Unfortunately, I think most of you have missed it as I have not gotten one inquiry or offer of information yet. I will continue to add/remove names as needed, but without the expertise of readers, many of these leads will kind of dead end and I will have to put up rather perfunctory posts on these artists.

Best of wishes to you all, -Ron

8 thoughts on “Maiden Voyages: February 2015

  1. About donations: I’m not going to donate your page, but maybe you should consider accepting donations in Bitcoin? It’s easy to use, pseudoanonymous, transfers are nearly free, you can transfer ANY (even equivalence of 0.01$) amount, no one will “block” your money…

    • I have run into BitCoin before and have been intrigued by it. However, a client informed me that the value crashed due to manipulation/speculation. I was told that the participants were compensated out of the pocket of teh creators, but something like this should be designed to resist the effects of rampant speculation. An alternative currency, which is probably technically illegal in most countries, is a noble idea but I suspect the creators of BitCoin may have set it up for personal profit rather than with the notion of providing a service. In time, I will look deeper into it to see what role it might have in a constructive economy. Thank you for your input. -Ron

    • A currency is only worth what you can do with it: buy things on the market or exchange it with the currency in use in your country. For this Bitcoin is quite limited, I doubt that all expenses for running the site and getting documentation could be paid in Bitcoins. And given the limited audience of Pigtails, collecting individual cents from readers will not bring as much money as substantial payments (in tens of $) by motivated supporters.

      • The limits of the system naturally includes its accessibility since it is a volunteer system. As of now, there is only one expense I can think of that can be taken care of with Bitcoin and it is minimal. That fact should not be used as an argument to diminish its value. Bitcoin does not yet benefit from the economies of scale that moneyed institutions have (namely, banks and governments). I suspect that if Bitcoin does ever gain mainstream popularity and acceptance, we will see strong resistance from governments and their allies as we have with The Pirate Bay. Since Pigtails is making a point of operating under the constraints of U.S. law, the legal complications must be clearly understood before attempting any involvement. Large conventional donations are certainly appreciated but, as a matter of principle, Pigtails must resist the temptation to be beholden to such contributors. In reading a biography of Martin Luther King, Jr., I have observed the tactical error of depending too much on contributions in the operation of the SCLC and the Civil Rights Movement so that when he diverged into criticizing US aggression in Vietnam, he lost a great deal of financial support and SCLC had trouble servicing its debt.

  2. Sad to read about Will McBride’s passing – the photos of the little girl in ‘Show Me!’ are unforgettable, capturing at the same time the girl’s extraordinary beauty, her joyful personality and her ease with her own body.

    Those photo sessions must have been so much fun!

    As to your wish list – I honestly did look at it, and spent quite a bit of time trying to find something I could help with, but had to admit defeat.

  3. Yes, I was very saddened when I read a few days ago about the death of Will McBride. He was truly one of the greatest photographers of the 20th century.

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