Meet our historical photographer, Michael P. Smith

mikesmithportraitNew Orleans native Mike Smith and the author were at Tulane University together in the late ’60s, when he was a photographer for the school’s newspaper Hullabaloo, and their yearbook, Jambalaya. Sadly, he passed away in 2008; but gladly, he leaves behind his great visual works, for which he attained great fame. Known by his New Orleans Jazz Fest performer pictures and for his evocative photography capturing the Spiritual Church, Mardi Gras Indian and funereal second line cultures, I’ve chosen to illustrate using widely varied pictures for which he was not famous – but as you’ll see, show similarly immense passion, creative sensibility and charm – meriting equal acclaim.

Enjoy this lovely video of Mike and his work here.

All photos © Michael P. Smith, The Historic New Orleans Historical Collection

Meet our contemporary photographer, Roy Guste

RoyGusteAce lensman Roy Guste is a native New Orleanian renaissance man; a veteran restaurateur (fifth-generation member of the storied Antoine’s Alciatore family) award-winning author, historian, writer of cookbooks, French Quarter real estate specialist, bon vivant, wizard with a camera – and most recently, like an our times’ Toulouse Lautrec was to roaring-90s Paris – he’s chief chronicler of the Crescent City’s colorful, classy, still steamy southern decadence world of burlesque.

His post-modern approach to our digital optic age’s techno-magic merges an impeccable eye and knowledge of his City into an unparalleled unique pallet of lush, rich splashy neons (many rife with a cartoonist’s whimsy) balancing his renderings of pensively stark to spooky, emotional architecturals and black and whites. Quite frankly kids, y’all won’t believe your eyes!

All photos © Roy Guste

NEW ORLEANS by Johnny Goldstein - Charles Neville, tenor sax; performed and arranged by John Colby

© 2020 An Elegy for the Lost City