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  1. #1

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    Exploring/expressing faith through photography

    Is there anyone out there doing this? I don't mean just documenting churches or cathedrals (though these can be nice images) but I am talking about the beliefs and dogma of different faiths.

    I guess I should preface this with I am looking for positive images. There are a schloo pot full of images and art that explores different faiths from a bitter and hateful stance.

    And not just from the big three: Islam, Christianity, Jewish
    Technological society has succeeded in multiplying the opportunities for pleasure, but it has great difficulty in generating joy. Pope Paul VI

    So, I think the "greats" were true to their visions, once their visions no longer sucked. Ralph Barker 12/2004

  2. #2

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    Mark, that is really good question. I tried, that is I started project which is next: in my town all churches, mosques are closed during the night. Which means that no one who at night (and night is time when this happens in majority cases) get into moral, religious, emotional, etc... crisis can not ask help from his/hers religion, in this case people (priests), whose "job" is taking care of human soul. So, I started to photograph religious places in my town during night, closed, unreachible for people in crisis. I didn't do good job first time, so I will have to start it again...

    So, answer to your question is: I tried, but failed...

  3. #3

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    I think comparing cermonies such as marriage or coming of age might be interesting, and something all faiths share in common.
    art is about managing compromise

  4. #4
    PhotoPete's Avatar
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    I am about to embark on a series of images dealing with the iconography and visual signifiers of Catholic Saints

  5. #5

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    Quote Originally Posted by mark
    Is there anyone out there doing this? I don't mean just documenting churches or cathedrals (though these can be nice images) but I am talking about the beliefs and dogma of different faiths.

    I guess I should preface this with I am looking for positive images. There are a schloo pot full of images and art that explores different faiths from a bitter and hateful stance.

    And not just from the big three: Islam, Christianity, Jewish
    Mark,

    This is a really good post. Certainly one that is close to me. I think, speaking for myself, that any valid faith is personal and apart from any organized religion. It is something that I discover for myself based on the apparent evidence to support it's validity.

    As I look back on my photographs over the past twenty years or so, I find that images taken back then have very personal meanings to me today. Almost as if I were expressing a symbolism in my search.

  6. #6
    Stephanie Brim's Avatar
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    I am of no faith, but I've been wanting to do something like this. I was raised Roman Catholic (so yes, I have a Roman Catholic mother ) and grew up with a healthy respect for the architecture and, even moreso, the traditions. This respect has extended to a wide variety of religions. I think what would interest me most at this time is to document a day in the life of a certain religion. I think the main obstacle I'd have would be whether or not some people/places allowed photography.

  7. #7

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    I guess I am looking for the symbolic representations of a faith's teachings. Exploring this could be interesting. I agree that it can and probably should be a very personal thing. I am looking for an insiders view.
    Technological society has succeeded in multiplying the opportunities for pleasure, but it has great difficulty in generating joy. Pope Paul VI

    So, I think the "greats" were true to their visions, once their visions no longer sucked. Ralph Barker 12/2004

  8. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by mark
    I guess I am looking for the symbolic representations of a faith's teachings. Exploring this could be interesting. I agree that it can and probably should be a very personal thing. I am looking for an insiders view.

    What I experienced in retrospect is that at a subconcious level I was experiencing views and realizations without an awareness that this was occurring.

    In my experience this occurred when I had no preconceived ideas.

    It was almost as if my photography was symbolically revealing the view that I hold today.

  9. #9
    df cardwell's Avatar
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    Light has always been the metaphor for the creator's spirit.

    Look at Salgado, Gene Smith and go from there. Watch the light.

    For a Christian point of view on Imagery, take a look at "Image As Insight" by Margaret Miles.

    Doctrine and Dogma defy imagery because it is nothing to do with Faith.

    Technical Writing perhaps, but not faith.

    .
    "One of the painful things about our time is that those who feel certainty are stupid,
    and those with any imagination and understanding are filled with doubt and indecision"

    -Bertrand Russell

  10. #10
    blansky's Avatar
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    I was employed by Franciscan Communications back in the late 1980s. They were a Catholic Organization that made high production movies and books about Catholic life.

    Some of their movies used people like Martin Sheen, Joseph Camponella (sp?), director Alan Davia, and even Jack Nicholson in his early days.

    I worked on a Time/Life style set of books for Catholics and most of the photography was not "religious" per se. It was mostly about the interaction of families and people in daily life. There were of course pictures of religious events but the thrust of the work was pretty much every day people living their lives. I made about 10,000 photographs for them and they used them in their books and video covers.

    It wasn't high art, just everyday life.


    Michael
    I couldn't think of anything witty to say so I left this blank.

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