About Me

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I write about thinkers, ideas, images and technology. I was raised in Rochester, New York, home of Eastman Kodak, where Instamatic cameras and those crinkly Sylvania flashbulbs were a staple of late 20th-century visual culture.

I’m fascinated by the dynamics that connect images, technology, and culture, and you’re just as likely to find me learning how to make photographs with the first nineteenth-century process as you are contemplating what exactly Instagram is doing to photography. I’ve written about photography, digitization and archives, the visual culture of the internet, and the social forces that shaped nineteeneth-century American art.

Like a photographer looking through a viewfinder,  I’m always framing what I see, selecting details, and arranging an image to tell a story, whether I’m writing a commissioned communications piece or composing a personal essay.

I’m a big-picture thinker and a keen media strategist.  My communications background includes stints on the account management side of a big Chicago advertising agency and as a university speechwriter. I’ve taught art history, US history, literature, and American Studies at Harvard, Boston University, MIT, Tufts, Colby College, and Rutgers University.