About Breakfast in America
Welcome. This website is my personal journal. There’s no guiding theme or topic, it’s whatever I happen to be doing and what I’m feeling enthused (or very occasionally annoyed) about. Primarily it is a collection of my notes and photographs going back as far as I can be bothered to go.
I decided to create this site after I completed my second full year of daily self-portrait photographs. I’d managed to accrue a bunch of different websites for my various personal projects, and it was time to look at rationalizing them all.
I decided to combine everything into one website, and this is it.
Breakfast in America sounded like a good name for the online journal for a Brit living in America, and I like the Supertramp album of the same name. I also had a good header picture taken on my first visit to the US that matched the title.
Gathering all my old content together has proved to be a monumental task. As I’m adding the older material I’m writing mainly in the present tense. Where practical I’ve been using emails, comments, and notes to keep it as accurate as I can. However, at the end of the day this is my perspective, my life, and the inaccuracies, fibs, exaggerations, or omissions are all mine.
About Gary Allman
I’m a Brit and I rather unexpectedly ended up living in Springfield, Missouri, in the American Midwest, complete with my wonderful wife Ginger. I have two grown sons in the UK, three step-children here in the US, all of whom have fled the nest. I should add that we share our home with our cats.
Photography – My earliest memory of photography is of being a child model for my uncle. He was a graphic designer and took lots of photographs. My interest in taking pictures began while we spent hours poring over his pictures, selecting suitable images for the brochures and corporate annual reports he produced for his clients. Early in my career, while working as a computer programmer, I also worked for a photo studio shooting weddings. Years later I worked in multimedia production where I became involved with video and audio production, graphic design, and script writing.
Over time my work and home responsibilities increased and I transitioned into more senior management roles. My work took me away from multimedia and into general production management, principally in financial services. I spent more time managing and less time producing. I became more business oriented, and my cameras, once always either in my briefcase or at my side, were left behind only to be brought out for vacations and occasionally photographing weddings and events for friends and family. Today, in my alter ego (should that be altar ego?) role as Communications Director I undertake a fair bit of event — documentary style — photography, and some stock image photography for promotions.
How I ended up in the American Midwest – In 2006 my kids were away at university and I found myself with some undisturbed time on my hands, so I bought my first digital camera. Early in 2007, I started my first Flickr 365 Days project (a challenge to take a self-portrait every day for a year). The reflection on my life that the pictures I took provided was, in part, the catalyst for a series of life changes and upheavals that culminated in my emigration from the UK to America in 2008. You can read a little bit more about all that here. In 2011 I completed my second year of daily self portraits project, which can be seen here: 365 Days of 2011.
Pictures — I don’t want to accidentally offend anyone; so be warned, a few of my posts and pictures include firearms, and others nudity. Some people may find one or both of those topics challenging. If that’s you, you’ll have to get over it. I enjoy shooting and I don’t understand why people get so hung up on nudity; we all have bodies after all.
Words — At one point I found myself changing some of my posts, editing my words and pictures, effectively redacting my life because I was concerned about what people might say or think about them. That’s silly, I am not responsible for what you (or anyone else) thinks. That is your concern, not mine. If you don’t like what you see, what I have done, taken pictures of; what I think and write about, that is fine. We are allowed to have different opinions and aesthetics. The world would be a very boring place if we didn’t.
The bottom line is, if you don’t like what you see or read here don’t bother telling me; just move on and find a corner of the Internet you are comfortable with.
The reality is that this is just one view on a very normal, albeit sometimes odd, life with all its quirks and idiosyncrasies.
Just to be clear, as this is my personal website and not some money-making venture. However, with the increase in monetization, and criminality of the internet, the cost of maintaining this site has risen exponentially — I now have to use premium security products to prevent the site from being hacked and protect visitors from becoming victims of malware. To put that into context, this site is attacked 10,000 times a month, and that figure is climbing. Backup software (that works) is not free, and low-cost website hosting no longer offers reasonable website response times. The result is that paying for security, backups, and hosting is no longer pocket change (for me anyway).
To offset some of the costs involved in keeping this site up and running I am including affiliate links on some of the products I recommend. This doesn’t cost you anything, but I get a tiny percentage of any purchase you may make based on my recommendations. I am not given products to review, so my reviews and recommendations are based on items I’ve actually bought and used. In short, when I include product links it’s because I think the item might be worth your further consideration or the link provides additional information for the curious.
To state the obvious: I am not responsible for the content of other websites, and their content may change over time without my knowledge. Visit, read, or purchase from the websites I provide links to at your own discretion.
Unless it is specifically stated otherwise, all text and images are mine. If I’ve made a mistake somewhere and included an image or text from someone else and not acknowledged the source, please contact me and I’ll correct it. For more information see my notes on Copyright and image licensing
Want to contact me? Use this link: Gary Allman